Monday, November 29, 2010

Why Conservatives are Happier than Liberals

A friend of mine sent this article to me the other day, and I found it quite interesting. Here's a snippet:
According to polls — Pew Research Center, the National Science Foundation — and studies such as Arthur Brooks’s Gross National Happiness, conservative Americans are happier than liberal Americans.

Liberals respond this way: “If we’re unhappier, it’s because we are more upset than conservatives over the plight of those less fortunate than ourselves.”

But common sense and data suggest other explanations.

For one thing, conservatives on the same socioeconomic level as liberals give more charity and volunteer more time than do liberals. And as regards the suffering of non-Americans, for at least half a century conservatives have been far more willing to sacrifice American treasure and American blood (often their own) for other nations’ liberty.

Both of these facts refute the liberals-are-more-concerned-about-others explanation for liberal unhappiness.
The unhappy gravitate toward the Left for a second reason. Life is hard for liberals and life is hard for conservatives. But conservatives assume that life will always be hard. Liberals, on the other hand, have utopian dreams. At his brother Robert’s funeral, the late Sen. Edward M. Kennedy recalled his brother saying: “Some men see things as they are and say, ‘Why?’ I dream things that never were and say, ‘Why not?’”

Utopians will always be less happy than those who know that suffering is inherent to human existence. The utopian compares America to utopia and finds it terribly wanting. The conservative compares America to every other civilization that has ever existed and walks around wondering how he got so lucky as to be born or naturalized an American.
Read the complete article here.

In my experience, this article hits on a point that I've often noticed. It seems to me that liberals are always angry. If it's not one thing, it's another. They are perpetually offended. It's the left, for the most part, who resort to personal attacks and name calling. Sure, some on the right do that but in most cases, the most vicious personal attacks come from liberals.

Generally speaking, I'm a pretty happy person. Sure, I rant and rave on the blog, but ya know what? That's why I started blogging! It gives me a place to vent. I see or hear something that gets to me, I rant on this here blog, and then I let it go. There are also times that I can get pretty intense, such as the weeks just prior to the recent elections, but that's a pretty short-lived thing.

That's not to say I don't have my down moments. I was feeling pretty blah last Wednesday. There was no particular reason for it. However, rather than wallowing in my blahness, I decided to do something about it. What did I do, you ask? Well I'll tell ya! I wrote this post. Instead of whining and bitching, I decided to think about all those things that make me happy. As I thought over the past year, I realized how truly blessed I've been.

One thing I've learned is life ain't fair. Bad things happen to good people all. the. time. But I've also learned that life is what you make of it. If you choose to be miserable and/or a perpetual victim, you will be. If, however, you choose to take whatever life throws at you and make the best of it, you'll be a happier camper. Now, I'm not trying to get all "Pollyanna" on y'all, but it is what it is.

You see, I don't depend on others to make me happy or content. Nor do most conservatives I know.

1 comment:

  1. I'm not sure this is a winnable debate to be honest, and I'm not about to argue on such vague and large groups as "liberals" and "conservatives" and what "happiness" means.

    But frankly, the right is very capable of vicious attacks. In fact, in my personal experience as a Libertarian, the most vicious personal attacks that I have faced have come from conservatives, not liberals.

    The commenters at are a great example of that.