Ultimately if you push a leftist far enough in their thought, there are several T-intersections their mind will come to;
1. Happiness isn't all about money.
2. GDP or Income per capita isn't an effective measure of standards of living.
3. I just don't believe the data.
4. George Bush sucks.
Well, at least you can knock out two of these 4 mainstay arguments of the left. Many thanks to Sunrunner 4 for this spiffy chart;
The research was done by professor Richard Easterlin of southern California. He seems pretty happy, but that's because he's an economist and we economists always have chicks chasing us.