Saturday, April 28, 2007

Take Back the Blog!

One need only read the comments under a post below on pay equity to understand why there needs to be a Take Back the Blog blogswarm. Does anyone REALLY believe that women choose to be downwardly mobile because of their desire to find a mate? Someone named "Stanton" does.

Stanton says:
One social force which I believe shapes the pay gap (and have not seen explored) is the mating instinct. Simply stated, higher pay increases the field of possible mates for males and decreases the field for females. This exerts downward pressure on the motivations of females to increase their compensation levels and upward pressure on that of males.

Do you believe this?

8 comments:

stanton said...

Please, BAC, don't work yourself into a tizzy over things not said. "Downward pressure on motivations" is not the same as chosing to be downwardly mobile. Both parties are strongly upwardly mobile, by choice.

Perhpas an example would clarify. Let's take two software engineers (a man and a woman of equal skill, education, and experience) at company X, each highly motivated, and each earning $90k. Scanning the web and other sources for the next big opportunity, many choices are available to them. She chooses company Y, which pays her $98k, and is pleased with the increase, even though she could have chosen company Z at $101k. She declined that job because the commute would be two hours each way. Her male colleague accepts the company Z job at $101k, willing to accept the two hour commute. Neither consciously considered the expanding or contracting field of possible mates when they made their choices, but were, in fact, influenced by this, along with many other factors.

Does this seem absurd to you? Perhaps it is not enough of a factor to account for the entire four cent (some say it's ten cents) pay gap unexplained by other factors. I don't know, since it hasn't been studied that I know of, and it would be challenging to design a robust study that measures it accurately.

But far more absurd is your interpretation of this to mean that women choose to be downwardly mobile. Good grief! Taking back the blog might be better considered closer to home, BAC!

BAC said...

No matter how you attempt to couch it, your hypothesis is still silly. There is a long history of the oppression of women that makes it much more logical to suggest the difference in salary is based on sexism, and sex discrimination.


BAC

stanton said...

So you are not interested in facts or research, because you have your convictions. The fact that no researcher has been able to demonstrate a discriminatory source for the pay gap is of no interest to you. The suggestion of the possibility of other factors is not only of no interest, the heresy of such a suggestion seems to you to be grounds for hounding the heretic out of the blogoshpere (or however you would like to "Take Back the Blog" from those who do not accept conventional wisdom as sufficient proof in and of itself).

And I'll bet that you also think of yourself as a progressive thinker, and see no irony in your attempt to shame someone who doesn't automatically accept a proclamation when it fits with the current vogue of explanations. Interesting.

BAC said...

Unfortunately for me, your responses to this (and other messages) have come at a time when I've been traveling for work. I'm not going to have a lot of time to respond to you until the weekend.

I do like "facts" and "research" ... but I don't think you have a theory that is worthy of the latter. I also think there is plenty of evidence to suggest that sex discrimination is a logical cause for the difference between what women and men of equal ability earn.


BAC

stanton said...

I would be very interested in the facts and research that you would present to demonstrate that the $0.04 piece of the gender pay gap (the part that is not already demonstrated to be from non-discriminatory factors) is a result of gender discrimination in the workplace. AAUW presented none themselves, and could only state that it "MAY be presumed to be due to discrimination". The Census Bureau study that they were announcing expressly stated that there has been no evidence of workplace discrimination in their long-term study. If you know of any information that escaped these two bodies, they would no doubt want to know of it even more than would I.

I hope that you are able to get to it this weekend.

stanton said...

I guess you just don't have time, right?

BAC said...

Last weekend I was in San Francisco for work. The weekend before that I was in Miami, also for work. Which means, I've now worked three weeks in a row without a break. Yesterday I had to mow the grass, because I couldn't find the dogs in the back yard. I had laundry to do, I needed to go to the grocery store, and I had other tasks that needed to be done.

I guess we might have to agree that I'm right and you are wrong ... and leave it at that.


BAC

stanton said...

I understand. That's how these discussions always end when actual evidence is requested. How you (and the many other chronically and righteously oppressed and offended persons) can continue to declare your fantasies as truth after these replays is a question worth considering some time. Not by you, of course.