Leading article: Happiness is... the end of pointless surveys like this

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The Independent Online

Perhaps it was the summer weather. Perhaps it was our natural sense of optimism. Or perhaps it was the loaded questions which were asked. Whatever the explanation, you might be pardoned for arching an eyebrow at the results of David Cameron's first National Well-being Index.

Apparently, seven out of 10 of us are satisfied with life, and a similar proportion "felt happy" the day before the interviews were conducted. One particularly inane question asked whether "the things you do in your life are worthwhile". It would be a very unusual individual who wasn't able to create some sense of meaning and fulfilment from some aspect of their life. Unusual or, of course, clinically depressed.

There is one certainty: we could all be happier. One way to achieve that, for most of us, would be by persuading the Government to stop wasting our ever-onerous taxes on entirely pointless surveys.