Public Square

There’s Even a Formula for Happiness?

Email Print

What’s the secret to achieving happiness?

Arthur Brooks, president of the American Enterprise Institute (AEI) thinks that he’s found it.

Ramesh Ponnuru, a Bloomberg View columnist and visiting fellow at AEI, notes that according to Brooks, work is one of the four components of happiness:

Once basic material needs are met…satisfying work matters more than money. What people want is not just success, but also “earned success” – the feeling that one’s efforts have paid off.

That’s great news for Americans since, according to Ponnuru, eighty-nine percent of us are satisfied with our jobs.

It also means that Americans can shape public policy to increase happiness. The secret? Allow more people to earn their success:

That is…the ultimate reason for a focus on promoting economic growth and reducing dependency on the government. Policies that discourage work – aid programs that phase out steeply as poor people move ahead in their jobs, for example – do reduce happiness, not just economic efficiency.

So what else do you need to be happy? Read Ponnuru’s entire article here.

Have our latest content delivered right to your inbox!

Further readings on Public Square

  • Public Square
  • Theology 101

This month we celebrate the five-hundredth anniversary of the posting of Martin Luther’s 95 Theses on the church door in…

  • Public Square

I’ve heard a thought-provoking statement repeated in some Christian circles: Caring for the poor is too big for the church….

Have our latest content delivered right to your inbox!