Monday, September 12, 2005

Mythical Income

The Seattle PI recently perpetuated the myth that women are paid less than men.

The calculation used to determine the relative incomes of men and women is simple enough. Take the total income earned by each sex and then divide by the number of people.

The problem is, it aint so simple.

In a free economy such as ours, the incomes that people earn are based on a large number of factors. Years on the job, past experience, education, and especially hours worked, are all key determinants of income. Thus, a valid comparison of income levels between men and women, blacks and whites, or between any two groups, cannot be made without factoring in these variables.

An appropriate analysis should also consider who receives the benefit of these incomes. For example, the income of a man working to support a stay-at-home Mom and their children should be allotted to everyone in the family, not just the man. After all, any good marketer will tell you that women purchase the vast majority of consumer goods in our country. If the income of women is so much lower than that of men, how exactly is that happening?

Equally important, a good analysis should take into account the recipients of wealth redistribution. Our country’s combined tax rates are close to (if not over) forty percent of individual income. This income is taken from the hands of the person that earned it and redistributed throughout the economy. Women receive far more of this income redistribution than do men. For example, many federal programs are far more generous to women than they are to men. The Violence Against Women Act provides billions of dollars to women only, while the National Institute of Health provides several times more research funding for female-only disease than it does for male-only health issues.

Finally, a good analysis would consider the relative performance of men and women in different types of employment. Often, the obvious differences in the ability of each each sex to perform a particular job are considered too politically incorrect to even mention. Men, for example, are much more capability of performing some jobs because of their greater physical strength. It doesn't stop there though: a female friend recently told me that whenever she calls a company's customer service line, she hangs up if she gets a woman on the line. According to her, men customer service agents are more helpful and courteous, so she will continue calling until she gets one. That example is just anecdotal, of course, but science finds numorous and impossible to ignore biological differences in the brain structure of men relative to women that go well beyond our obvious difference in physique.

But, if these issues were taken into account, gender feminists would ultimately have one less thing to be hysterical about. A responsible newspaper would clearly caveat these studies before allowing their results to be printed. In fact, these bogus studies would have been long ago dismissed on the pages of our country’s newspapers if they cared much about truth.

They don’t, though. Perhaps this is why so many Americans are now looking to each other for sources of news instead of traditional sources.


Blogger Tom Swanson said...

I have this argument at least a dozen times a week in my travels. It is difficult to educate the ignorant people of the world about what seems so painfully obvious to us.

Women in general choose jobs or occupations that yield less income. That is the "TRUE" reality for the disparity in income. For example, the first three jobs I can think of for a man would typically be a firefighter, construction worker, and a truck driver. The first three I would think of for a woman would be a receptionist, nurse, and a teacher.
Stereotypical perhaps, but these are the first things that came to my mind!
For the sake of brevity, I wont bore you with the known average incomes of these occupations from the Department of Labor and Industries website. Suffice it to say; I think we all know approximately the general median income of all these jobs. It appears obvious to the laymen that the average woman chooses jobs that are either not in high demand or do not require a certain amount of physicality to them. That coupled with the fact that women typically take more time off during their career for pregnancies, family leave time, flextime, sick time, sabbaticals, leaving early for Sara’s recital or taking Johnny to soccer practice, etc.
I know from my own experience as an officer in the Navy that all 0-3’s to E-3’s are paid the same for the same time in rate. I also know from my Teamster days, as a youth, that all employees were paid equally by labor agreement for their respective time of service. I surmise that in most occupations if a woman has equal qualifications, experience, and background they are paid no differently than their colleges of similar time in service.
Ironically one has to ask themselves; especially during a time in our history when outsourcing and downsizing are so prevalent, “Don’t you think if the major corporations could hire more and more women for .75 cents on the dollar, than why aren’t the doing it”? Why hire American men at all, if you can get a woman for cheaper? Fortune 500 companies are compelled by their boards & stockholders to make a profit at any expense. So why you bantering feminist, has corporate America denied such a lucrative opportunity to hire only women for cheaper?

Is it because your theory is quite possibly erroneous?

9/12/2005 09:43:00 PM  
Blogger Mark said...

And let's not forget the child support is not included in all these calculations. Never shows on W2, and is never included in calculations. Tax free money pours into the woman's house that's all off the books.

9/18/2005 04:35:00 PM  

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