And, now I’ve heard it all. David Cameron wants a Happiness Index, now Fine Gael (rather belatedly) appoint a Minister for Happiness, the comedian Jarleth Regan. Presser below:
An Taoiseach, Mr. Enda Kenny, T.D., has announced the appointment of Mr. Jarlath Regan as the Minister of State with responsibility for happiness; a newly created Ministerial role.
The announcement follows regular comments and acknowledgments by An Taoiseach and Fine Gael during this year’s General Election that if elected, the focus would not only be on economic growth but also to ensure that the quality of life for all Irish people would improve for all, resulting in a happier and more productive country.
Mr Regan will be assigned to the Department of Health and will work alongside the Central Statistics Office and key officials from the Department of Health in establishing key areas that matter most to people’s happiness. The happiness level will be measured through the Happiness Barometer; a qualitive and quantitative research project that will examine happiness levels in all areas of Ireland (county by county) over a 12 month period, starting in May.
The information gathered will then give the Government an overall picture of how life is improving for Irish people and help in re-evaluating priorities in life for Irish people. The counties that fall under the national average will be treated as a priority for the newly appointed Government to ensure a better life for all is achieved over the next 2 years.
Mick is founding editor of Slugger. He has written papers on the impacts of the Internet on politics and the wider media and is a regular guest and speaking events across Ireland, the UK and Europe. Twitter: @MickFealty