On the flip side, however, it seems also that these happy-go-lucky folk tended to be both more socially conservative and "less likely to look for a new job if they were out of work."
Now, if that doesn't paint a clear enough image your mind, consider the following, from "A proposal to classify happiness as a psychiatric disorder":
It is proposed that happiness be classified as a psychiatric disorder and be included in future editions of the major diagnostic manuals under the new name: major affective disorder, pleasant type. In a review of the relevant literature it is shown that happiness is statistically abnormal, consists of a discrete cluster of symptoms, is associated with a range of cognitive abnormalities, and probably reflects the abnormal functioning of the central nervous system. One possible objection to this proposal remains--that happiness is not negatively valued. However, this objection is dismissed as scientifically irrelevant.[*]
Department of Clinical Psychology, Liverpool University.
Clearly all that remains is a bit of empirical research to sort out "chickens" from "eggs," that sort of thing, followed by a general culling of happy fools from positions of power. Then maybe the rest of us can get some fucking work done.
[*] If anyone knows whether this went beyond the stage of "proposal," please let me know!