There is all the difference in the world between teaching children about religion and handing them over to be taught by the religious.

Polly Toynbee Religion Quote

People want the right to die at a time of their own choosing. Too many families have watched helplessly as a relative dies slowly longing for death.

Polly Toynbee Death Quote

Most people come to fear not death itself but the many terrible ways of dying.

Polly Toynbee Fear Quote

How do you make any sense of history art or literature without knowing the stories and iconography of your own culture and all the world’s main religions?

Polly Toynbee History Quote

But how odd that in this heathen nation of empty pews where churches’ bare ruined choirs are converted into luxury loft living a Labour government – yes a Labour government – is deliberately creating a huge expansion of faith schools.

Polly Toynbee Faith Quote

But instead of standing up for reason our government is handing education over to the world of faith.

Polly Toynbee Education Quote

Could a government dare to set out with happiness as its goal? Now that there are accepted scientific proofs it would be easy to audit the progress of national happiness annually just as we monitor money and GDP.

Happiness is a real objective phenomenon scientifically verifiable. That means people and whole societies can now be measured over time and compared accurately with one another. Causes and cures for unhappiness can be quantified.

Inequality makes everyone unhappy the poor most of all and that is well within the remit of the state. More money gives less extra happiness the richer we get yet we are addicted to earning and spending more every year.

Is anyone serious about the politics of happiness? David Cameron dipped a toe in the water using the word lightly but denying the hard policies it implies. Labour shies away from it but should take up the challenge.

It is now possible to quantify people’s levels of happiness pretty accurately by asking them by observation and by measuring electrical activity in the brain in degrees from terrible pain to sublime joy.

Polly Toynbee Happiness Quotes