'Disbelief over Pakistanis being called happy'
Islamabad: Pakistanis could be "forgiven for looking around in disbelief" on learning about a survey that says Pakistan occupies the 16th slot in the Happy Planet Index, said a leading daily.
"Post-colonial nation that we are, we've become used to receiving wisdom, often about our own society and situation, from the West...there are occasions when the results produced by the mighty number-crushers on the other side of the planet seem literally that: from another planet altogether," said an editorial in the Dawn Monday.
"That is the case with the Happy Planet Index 2012, the results of which were announced Wednesday.
"Pakistan never appears anywhere near the top of a list gauging prosperity, but in the case of 'sustainable wellbeing', which the Index purportedly measures, it seems we occupy the 16th slot out of 151 countries, ahead of both India and America and one spot below Israel," said the daily.
It said that on receiving this news, "the average Pakistani could be forgiven for looking around in disbelief".
"But as always, the devil lies in the detail."
The index is "calculated using human life expectancy and wellbeing, and the ecological footprint, of countries through data collected by a range of sources such as the UNDP and Gallup".
The daily said that Pakistan rated 'mediocre' on the first two counts but was saved by its ecological footprint - or lack thereof.
"What that means is that the average Pakistani's perception that this is a tough country to negotiate is probably true, but fortunately we are not in the business of actively harming the planet - which, we must suppose, is encouraging," it added