"Whenever the people are well-informed, they can be trusted with their own government." Thomas Jefferson

Women: Looking For Love In All the Wrong Places?

Melanie Sturm | @ThinkAgainUSA Read Comments - 17
Publish Date: 
Thu, 02/13/2014

“Life’s greatest happiness,” Victor Hugo wrote, “is to be convinced we are loved.”  As most experienced couples know, love-induced happiness is a year-round triumph, not the outcome of a singular, mass-marketed Valentine’s celebration – the one Jay Leno calls “Extortion Day.”


But men ignore this expectation-filled Hallmark holiday at their peril, which is why it’s become a $16 billion industry. More than heart-shaped bling, women savor attention -- a lesson noted by politicians.


Just as women beware of transient Romeos, they must Think Again about politicians who whisper sweet nothings into their ears, over-promising before an election and under-delivering after winning their commitment.


A frequent refrain of President Obama’s -- asserted as earnestly as “if you like your health care plan, you can keep it” -- is the claim repeated in his State of the Union address that women “make 77 cents for every dollar a man earns.” Promising to close the “embarrassing” gap he declared, “Women deserve equal pay for equal work.”


While discrimination can’t be ruled out, should it be the default explanation? Are whites the victims of discrimination because they earn less than Asians? If women do the same work for less, why would anyone hire a man?


Playing honest broker and mindful of research studies, feminist Hanna Rosin wrote in Slate, “I’ve heard the line enough times that I feel the need to set the record straight: It’s not true.”


Though the rhetoric is as empty as the calories in a box of Valentine’s chocolates, it sells, 51 years after President Kennedy signed the Equal Pay Act to prohibit gender-based wage discrimination.


Equally delicious are Orwellian-named laws like the Paycheck Fairness Act, which would increase the risk of costly litigation for employers, discouraging the hiring of women whom the law purports to protect.  That’s because “employers could not use fewer hours, less education, and lower performance to evaluate salary differences,” explained Diana Furchtgott-Roth, former chief economist at the Labor Department.


Nevertheless, opposing labor market-imperiling legislation – sops to the trial-lawyer lobby that kept tort reform out of Obamacare – is worse than overlooking Valentine's Day. It's a “War on Women.”


Yet asserting that women make less than men for the same labor without considering hours worked, education, industry, job tenure, and marital and parental status, is like saying women are cheated out of food because men consume more.  


That men and women possess different minds and bodies, have distinct interests and life goals and make unique choices largely explains gender-gaps, though many feminists resist these truths.  Incredibly, sex differences are also overlooked in medical research and treatment, a dangerous oversight attributed to feminism in a recent 60 Minutes report. 


Women make less than men, Rosin posits, because they “don’t want to work the same way men do” – a theory confirmed by a 2007 Pew survey in which 79 percent of working mothers preferred part-time or no work, compared to only 12 percent of fathers. They’re also happier working part-time, according to an American Psychological Association study.  


Additionally, women consciously choose the least lucrative college majors and enter less demanding and lower-paying occupations, even in medicine where men predominate in higher-paid specialties requiring more training and hours.


Economic studies that consider these differences report a full-time wage gap as small as 5 percent. Meanwhile, the New York Times reported, women earn 10 percent more than men for part-time employment involving 5 to 39 hours.


"The point here,” Rosin argues, “is not that there is no wage inequality. But by focusing our outrage into a tidy, misleading statistic we’ve missed the actual challenges."


Those challenges include the feminization of poverty triggered by an explosion of single-motherhood (42 percent overall and 73 percent among blacks), and a declining standard of living caused by falling wages, less work and skyrocketing healthcare, food, and utility costs.


Nearly five years into an economic recovery the AP labeled the feeblest since the Great Depression, we have 4 million fewer jobs than in 2008 (despite working-age population growth of 14 million), crisis levels of government dependency, and severe underemployment. Though women have regained more jobs than men, Census data shows a record 17 million live in poverty compared to 12.6 million men.


There are programs that could help women rise out of the safety net onto the ladder of opportunity -- if targeted with cupid-like precision -- though intact families are the best remedy. Ultimately, the ideal bed of roses is a robust economy, higher-paying jobs and the disposable income boost that comes from lower prices – all of which are undermined by current policies.


Most importantly, women mustn’t allow suitors to romance them with bouquets of sweeping government programs that wilt at the challenge, but never die. 


Think Again – Aren’t pandering politicians who mislead in pursuit of one-night stands on Election Day the ones waging the War on Women?


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Dear Melanie, My

Dear Melanie,

My Universe Deity, you have done it again -- just such a clear presentation that is right on the money. Oh my, how can I get the whole US to read what you are writting, what refreshing clearity, what hard hitting and authoratative and believeable facts, fearlessness around sacred cows, wisdom of tactfull presentation, plausable alternatives outlined. Then a use of metaphores that stick in the mind.

About the whole world being able to see these highly instructive pieces, not to worry Dan, right things always triumph in the end over the unwise error that seems prevalent. We all have a little piece of the Divine that is wispering in every ear, and finally we tune in, A catalist like you of course greatly excellerates the process.

So much positive connecting umph going your way. You really are a rare and invaluable endity that is doing great helpfull things. My impatience for you to scream all of the many things you have written from the cell towers, [no that wouldn't appear credable] is on the way in surity, as the time is now for your gifts and us believing that the time is now, is, what is necessary.

Again thanks for your long hours in producing these pieces. I'm guessing , you may knock them out in a few minutes.


Dear Bob, Your point, and its

Dear Bob,

Your point, and its an important one, is there are laws and government agencies — federal and local -- charged with assuring equal pay because discrimination does happen. This is a very good thing.

My question is, why do we need more laws? Can't we merely enforce the laws on the books?

That's my point — new laws sold on compassionate and fairness grounds often do little more than increase politicians' power, influence and ability to pay off special interests (trial-lawyer lobby, in this case). No one represented this racket better than John Edwards. It needs to stop because the unintended consequences are grave -- real people are getting hurt.

How many women don't get hired because an employer doesn't want to risk potential pay equality litigation, especially if they aren't allowed to justify pay discrepancies based on experience, time worked and education? Meanwhile, women who would otherwise have competed for higher paying jobs are relegated to lower paying ones, and now, a record number live in poverty. This is a national tragedy.

Anyway, I ALWAYS appreciate our dialogue and your readership!

Melanie -- I agree with your

Melanie -- I agree with your general. point. There are cases that mischaracterize factors in either claiming Equal pay or even the politics of raising said claims.

I was for 8 years an Administrative law judge for the Nebraska Equal Opportunity commission and for 3 years a Commissioner.

Here's a link http://www.eeoc.gov/eeoc/statistics/enforcement/epa.cfm to the Federal EEOC statistics of cases they managed. We knew that these cases represent a fraction of violations but with limited Resources dealt mostly with cases presented by a complainant.

I have seen, personally, many cases of workplace discrimination in violation of law. These tend to be men and women in the same workplace doing substantially the same work with substantially similar qualifications and the women are paid less.

These cases may be fewer than some think but I urge you to think again. I do agree with you in some cases but this remains a workplace problem that in some real cases represents real discrimination based on sex and historical pay patterns- not fair or legal under current law.

Enjoy your view and always your writing.


Anything this lady writes is

Anything this lady writes is worth reading - well researched, provocative, often mind changing as this article was for me. Thank you Melanie

Women vote more on the basis

Women vote more on the basis of race and ethnicity. Obama won the black women's vote 96% to 3%. He won the Latina vote 76% to 23% and other (including Asian) 66% to 31%.

Romney won the white women's vote 56% to 42%. Romney also won the married women's vote 53% to 46%. Obama won the single woman's vote 67% to 31% and the single male vote 56% to 40%.

The War on Women stratagem seems to only work on certain segments of women. Gender doesn't appear to play as big a role as race, ethnicity, and marital status.

Now while this article is

Now while this article is more about pay inequality, to think that women get treated them same in society as a whole is not true.

Putting restrictions on access to birth control and abortion is more than enough for a rational person to believe that certain people want to control, or limit the rights of women.

I wonder if many women hook

I wonder if many women hook up with the Dems because the like being treated badly.

I mean think about it how many girls did you know growing that hooked up the dumbest, meanest guy they could find.

Conservative thinking women excluded of course...

Romney won the white women’s

Romney won the white women’s vote 56% to 42%.

Women vote based on

Women vote based on consensus.

As a consensus develops, others glom on.

Then there is the Oil of Olay effect. A good pitchman can sell them anything

[ Women vote based on

[ Women vote based on fear.

Men vote based on freedom.

If the Republican party wants to attract more womens votes it needs to do something to address womens fears. It must make them FEAR another Democratic administration more than it fears losing their federal government sugar daddy. ]

Most Women vote on fear because they have been raised poorly by their dim witted city slicker mothers who were bra burning 60’s hippies or an “American Princess” who are spoiled rotten and their biggest fear is the “gravy train” running out.

Raised in environments that spoiled them with convenience they fear ANY loss of convenience and especially fear the idea that they may have to take responsibility of taking care of themselves despite proclaiming / lying to themselves that they are an “independent woman”.

This is why Fluke going out and lying to women that they cannot afford their own birth control is so effective.

We need more Anne Oakley and far fewer American Princesses. Anne Oakley would make it matter of pride that she would buy her own stuff for her own body where the princess would feel entitled to it.

If you are raising a daughter, raise them to take care of themselves and also raise them to have a sense of Pride in taking care of themselves and that learned helplessness is a sin. Rugged individualism is not a men;’s only club, it is learned helplessness that begets Democrat voters.

I am glad I was raised right, on a farm alongside my brothers and expected not to do the same things they did but still expected to pitch in as much as I could and not to make excuses for myself.

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