Addiction Could be a Happiness Index.

The ,marijuana,barbiturate,nicotine,amphetamine,alcohol etc.latticework picked up by public health reporting,can conceivably be used to rank nations,regions,states,counties cities etc on a scale of happiness vs unhappiness,misery vs contentment etc.Addiction and its use paraphenalia constitute what the anthropologists call a culture item and within and across cultures it has class and status significance.In a country.state.or region where privilege is protected its presence is often an affectation of that privilege and unless accompanied by physical or mental/ moral degeneration is not considered a disease requiring treatment.Similarly where the addctive use of an agent(usually cheap and readily available) is neccessary to fend off fatigue and demoralization  attendant upon serfdom and brutal exertion,unaccompanied by physical and mental degeneration, treatment is not a consideration.Physical and moral degeneration are usually “treated” with imprisonment or death.

The public health approach is not necessarikly limited to authoritarian or socialistic regimes but there is the danger of deontology.i.e.slavishly pursuing the techniques of inquiry while forgetting the human purpose of the data collection and thus the problem of regulating the regulators will continually arise.

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