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Princeton Professor Proves Academia Really HAS Run Out Of Ideas

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Angus Deaton, a professor of economics and international affairs at Princeton University and the author of a study out in the current edition of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, has managed to slice thinner than Kate Moss the debate over how much money it takes to make one happy.

According to Deaton, "day-to-day contentment" increases the more you earn--up to $75,000.

Above $75,000 per annum, day-to-day contentment doesn't change.

However, what does change, apparently, is a person's overall satisfaction with life, once they cross the $75,000 threshold.

"It's really important to recognize that the word 'happiness' covers a lot of ground," said Deaton. "There is your overall evaluation of how your life is going, while the other has to do more with emotional well-being at the moment. Higher incomes don't seem to have any effect on well-being after around $75,000, whereas your evaluation of your life keeps going up along with income."

The question now becomes even more opaque:

If you are happy day-to-day, every day, does that preclude being happy overall?

Or, if you are happy overall, does that preclude being happy day-to-day?

No. I mean, not really. Or, sort of. Kind of. Well, it all depends. Like, you know, it's an individual thing.

"That's a really deep, hard question," Deaton said. "[Both measures] are important. But if you're unhappy now, the fact your life may be going well doesn't make up for that."


Oh, and there's more:

Losing a substantial amount of income is not good for emotional well being; as income drops, happiness does too, while sadness and stress increase. Also, people who live in poverty are less happy than people who are well-off.

And who says Princeton isn't worth $50,000 a year?
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