No, I don’t think it’s cynical:

Am I being too cynical here or is the proliferation of happiness studies indicative of something sad and pathetic about contemporary America?

That reminds me of something funny: I remember reading an anthology of American Indian poetry years ago. There was a brief story in it about an anthropologist asking a Southwestern man why so many of their songs were about rain. He said it was because it was so vital to their existence, but they never had very much of it. With that in mind, he said, why are so many of your songs about love?