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North Korea Global Happiness Index: China Is The World's 'Happiest' Place

China Tiananmen Square

First Posted: 06/06/11 01:18 PM ET Updated: 08/06/11 06:12 AM ET

Most global polls rate Scandinavian and west European nations as being among the world's happiest and most liveable. Not so says a North Korean survey, which ranked China as "the happiest place on earth."

As Shanghaiist is reporting, a new global happiness index released by North Korea's Chosun Central Television awarded China 100 out of 100 possible points. If the "Gross National Happiness" survey is to be believed, isolated dictatorships are the key to overall well-being, with North Korea reportedly coming in second with 98 points, followed by Cuba, Iran and Venezuela.

Though full rankings and the survey's criteria have not yet been revealed (at least In English), the lowest marks are said to have gone to South Korea, which scored just 18 points to come in at 152, while the United States -- reportedly listed as "the American Empire" -- fared even worse at 203 with a measly three points, MSNBC is reporting. Israel was nowhere to be found.

Still, the survey has created a global media sensation, with resounding grumblings in the blogsophere. "Famine and repression apparently didn't hurt North Korea's standing in the eyes of the 'researchers,'" joked NPR's Mark Memmott, while another commentator reportedly pleaded, "Please send me to the U.S. so I can suffer too."

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Filed by Curtis M. Wong  |