Is money and happiness related?
Have you ever heard the famous saying “money can’t buy happiness”? Well I have done some research and I think it is safe to say that whoever came up with that saying obviously had enough money to survive. I am about to be halfway done my college career so the real world is right around the corner. But before I enter the real world and start my big girl job, I want to know if it is possible to live a happy life that I’ve always dreamed of while living comfortably (a.k.a making enough money to survive).
World Happiness Report 2017
I know exactly how I can live a happy life while living comfortably… Move to Europe!
Just kidding… kinda?
All About Unions
This page provides answers to the following questions: 1. What is a labor union? 2. What are the benefits of being a…www.workplacefairness.org
It is generally argued that the U.S. has a small social welfare system compared to other rich nations and far more…www.heritage.org
Does the United States have a smaller social welfare programs compared to other countries?
I found a very interesting article from the Heritage Foundation named “Social welfare in the United States and other nations”. The United States has a higher per capita government social welfare spending compared to European countries. This is surprising to me because the majority of the United States social programs tend to only target the poor and the elderly. European social programs seem to be “bigger” because they are able to provide more to everyone, no matter what age you are. My father brought up during his interview how he believes he had more benefits when working and living in England compared to the United States. The government provided him with healthcare and free education even though he was a part of the middle class. His parents who still live in England now both work at the local church in their town. They live very simply lives and barely make enough money to live off of. If the British Government did not provide as much welfare as they do, they would not be living the happy lives they are living now. Although it is a positive that everyone has access to healthcare and secondary education, it does come with a consequence. My Dad discussed how living with these benefits in England resulted in making much less money due to extremely high taxes that go to the government to make welfare possible. As the article discussed, the target groups of U.S. social welfare programs tend to be the poor and the elderly while the working and middle class are left to rely on their own resources, a fact that is often mis-recognized in contemporary discussions of health care. I do believe that calling the United States’s social welfare programs small compared to other nations is an incorrect statement since a much larger amount of money per citizen is put into it. But, I do believe other countries have better systems set up to be able to provide welfare and educations for everyone.
This article opens up with the statement that workers in the United States put in more hours, retire later, and take less vacation days than anywhere else. It talks about how a study shows the average person in Europe works 258 fewer hours per year (19 percent less) than Americans. Many of the points brought up in this article were also discussed during the interview with my Dad. My Dad discussed how he prefers working in the United States because he is more likely to “move up the ladder” and is rewarded for his hard work. I do believe that is a part of the reason why Americans work more than Europeans. They come in early and leave late to get more work done and to prove themselves to their bosses. This is unheard of in the workplace in Europe. They believe it is important to use your free time for yourself and family. Working this much results in employees competing for the title of “who works more” and it turns into a hostile work environment. I thought it was very interesting that there are more Americans over the age of 50 working in the U.S. now than ever before. A reason for that could be because the U.S. does not have a generous pension like Europe because they moved away from traditional pensions to 401k plans. These plans make it harder for Americans to know when it is safe for them to stop working which is why Americans are working the extra hours and taking less vacations. In relation to the 2017 World Happiness Report, I believe that working less hours and taking more vacations increases happiness especially because most of the happiest countries are in Europe.It is crazy to believe that only forty years ago Europeans and Americans worked the same amount of hours but the American working culture has recently become a non-stop working machine.
After spending my semester researching these sources, I think it is safe to say that money and happiness are related. As minimum wage increases, life satisfactions increases. When a government offers it’s citizens more welfare and free secondary education, their citizens are overall happier. Also, when companies and employees negotiate things like wages and come up with agreements such as the guaranteed severance agreement, the employees are less stressed. I think its time we all admit… Money CAN buy happiness!
Helliwell, John, Richard Layard, and Jeffrey Sachs, eds. “World Happiness Report 2017.” World Happiness Report 2017 I (2017): n. pag. Web. 23 Mar. 2017.
Radcliff, Benjamin, and Michael Krassa. “Does a Higher Minimum Wage Make People Happier?” The Washington Post. WP Company, 14 May 2014. Web. 23 Mar. 2017.
Rector, Robert. “Poverty and the Social Welfare State in the United States and Other Nations.” The Heritage Foundation. N.p., 16 Sept. 2015. Web. 23 Mar. 2017.
“Severance Agreement Template — Free Download on UpCounsel.” UpCounsel. N.p., n.d. Web. 28 Mar. 2017.
Steverman, Ben. “Americans Work 25% More Than Europeans, Study Finds.”Bloomberg.com. Bloomberg, 18 Oct. 2016. Web. 23 Mar. 2017.
“Workers, Employee, Employment and Job Rights — Workplace Fairness.” Employee Rights, Job Rights, Workers Rights. //www.workplacefairness.org, n.d. Web. 12 May 2017.