Gender Pay Gap?

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Gender Pay Gap?

Unread postby Lochlan » 26th March, 2017, 7:53 pm

Right, to kick this off, I'm just going to say this - as far as I know, the gender pay gap has been proven to be due to factors other than the actual pay a person is given in any given job e.g. a man and woman will both earn the same in a position, while one may earn less if they are in a different position - this may only be true in developed countries.

My question is whether or not this concept should be introduced to young people, as I have noticed it to be. My French homework last week actually contained a text talking about the gender pay gap and how it affects women, and a ( I must note female ) teacher is holding a debate, not on whether it is true or not, but whether it is ok or not, with the assumption that it exists.

In my mind, this is unacceptable as its shows people pushing uneducated, uninformed, disproved concepts to very naive kids that are likely to believe teachers and learning aids.

What do you think?
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Re: Gender Pay Gap?

Unread postby Knope » 26th March, 2017, 9:26 pm

ok I'm gonna put some of my thoughts on this here

You can try to account for the gap by considering external factors like different lifestyle decisions between men and women, but the problem with that approach is it's almost never followed by any serious analysis of WHY these huge professional disparities exist between men and women in the first place. It's rather moronic to take such an analysis and use it as evidence for some nonexistent equality between the genders in terms of income and employment. You can only hear things like "Actually, 15% of the gap is due to men and women going into different fields and choosing different majors..." smugly said so many times before you're driven crazy. There are tons of problems we have to address here, people! Let's start with the fact that women are, from the very start, discouraged from pursuing what are the real high-skilled and high-paying jobs, which are those in the STEM fields. Don't play with trucks, they're for boys. Here's a doll, play with it. And here the talking points are studies like this, which have findings like: "Contrary to prevailing assumptions, men and women faculty members from all four fields preferred female applicants 2:1 over identically qualified males with matching lifestyles (single, married, divorced), with the exception of male economists, who showed no gender preference." But even a cursory glance at the broader statistics, as opposed to cherry-picked findings, quickly reveal the truth. For instance, even though "Women with STEM jobs [earn] 33 percent more than comparable women in non-STEM jobs", they "hold less than 25 percent of STEM jobs."

I can also say anecdotally that girls don't participate in STEM at nearly the same rate as men, even though they're clearly just as capable. Whenever you go to a competition or event, it's penises everywhere.

I think whenever this larger debate comes up, any real chance at both sides reaching any sort of consensus or agreement or even basic mutual understanding is severely limited because they're both starting from radically different assumptions. Those who argue against the wage gap as a concept often think that those who believe in it are making the argument that it's the result of widespread malice and hate, that it is the natural ending point of rampant, uncontrolled misogyny and sexism. What I think most people are actually arguing, however, is that women are more harmed by the collection of biases and unconscious assumptions we all make. Even though households with two working parents are hardly a rarity these days, the old-fashioned expectation that the onus is on the man/husband to provide for his family is still alive and well. Nobody looks down on a housewife, because that's a parallel expectation. Men are also expected to be more competitive and ambitious; an ambitious and career-oriented woman is something that often requires a little adjustment, because it's so contrary to our deepest, most underlying presumptions. Of course, any existing discrimination is compounded and made worse by the fact that many executives and occupants of high level positions in business are older men with old-fashioned ideals. Many companies and even entire industries are essentially giant men's clubs.

Interesting study.

Occupational segregation plays a huge role here.

"Despite the clearly demonstrated economic rewards that accrue to companies with women in
corporate leadership, women remain dramatically underrepresented in corporate boardrooms and
executive suites. While women comprise 46.4 percent of all employees in Fortune 500
companies, they make up just 15.7 percent of board seats, 14.4 percent of executive officers, 7.6
percent of top earning executive officers, and 2.4 percent of chief executive officers (CEOs).
Women lag men in Fortune 500 leadership across all industries, including female-prevalent
industries. The percentage of women-held board seats and corporate officer positions are quite
similar across industries, even in fields such as retail and finance, where women represent a
greater share of total employees. The only fields where women’s leadership is markedly lower
than average are utilities, mining, and quarry extraction and oil and gas extraction, where
women’s overall representation is much lower."


It's a falsehood that the 'wage gap has been disproved.' The exact opposite is true. When analysis is conducted, the 'true' wage gap, or what's usually referred to as the discriminatory component of the gap, is almost always found to be much less than the oft-quoted figure of 22%. However, as I said before, it's a mistake to assume that 'accounted for' occupational differences can't be the result of wider discrimination and sexism in society, which many often do. But even putting that aside, let's focus solely on the discriminatory component of the gap. This is from the same report:

"Economists have explored the gender pay gap for many decades and produced hundreds (if not
1000s) of articles and reports to explain the reasons for the gender pay gap. No matter how
sophisticated and complex their models, they always find that some portion of the wage gap is
unexplained by the sets of variables for which they can measure differences between men’s and
women’s education levels, work experiences, ages, occupation or industry in which they work,
or region of the country they reside. Because the wage differences cannot be explained by any of
the differences in workers’ traits, this unexplained portion of the wage gap is attributed to gender
discrimination."


It doesn't matter how small such a gap is (estimates vary, usually 5-10%) -- the very fact it exists at all is disturbing and poses a problem we must confront and attempt to remedy.
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Re: Gender Pay Gap?

Unread postby Pity » 26th March, 2017, 9:31 pm

The gender wage gap is entirely a myth.

I posted this video before, but it does a great job in explaining why:


Women supposedly earn 76 cents on the dollar because that is what they make on average. Women choose overwhelmingly choose lower-paying careers and the opposite is for men. It is estimated that the real wage gap is 7 cents not 24. This can easily be explained because employers pay more to those willing to work longer hours or in riskier positions, which men are.
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Re: Gender Pay Gap?

Unread postby JonathanT88 » 26th March, 2017, 10:05 pm

You're not really arguing that the gender wage gap is a myth though, are you Pity? You're suggesting there is a gap, but that it occurs for reasons other than employer discrimination, which should remain an issue in the gender equality campaign.

Nevertheless, I too am skeptical of the idea that deliberate discrimination from employers contributes notably towards the wage gap. This economist has a pretty interesting way of accounting for the unexplained portion of the gap mentioned by Dylan, and if you're looking for clarification here she is a second time in neat, snappy interview form. It seems to me that the problem with studies arguing that discrimination exists is that they base analysis on a comparison of workers' individual traits rather than their group habits/behaviour, and this is what Goldin (who seems to be an authority on the matter) fixes.

Also, and I'm not sure whether or not mainstream studies account for this, but many high-ranking (and this highly paid) workers entered their profession in a time where gender discrimination was rife, and have been working their way up since. In this way, it's no surprise that men dominate the upper echelons of companies, as this demographic reflects the situation several decades ago.

But yes, of course we should be trying to knock down sub-conscious barriers affecting men in their choices in career. Women shouldn't fear computer science because of its perceived masculinity, nor should men shy away from teaching and nursing. It seems to me that gender equality movements should move away from addressing systemic discrimination and on to the disparity caused by our own inner biases and preconceptions if they really want to make noticeable advances.

That said, would it be callous to suggest that this issue is kind of frivolous when compared with all the other challenges we face as a society, and to discuss it so extensively does nothing but provide a temporary distraction? Real economic inequality does exist, but rather than creating small differences between gender groups it creates monumental disparity between a very very small group of people and 'the rest.' This is what we should be talking about if we really do care about economic fairness, and getting paid in proportion to the work you actually do. It is testiment to the weakness of modern leftism that we're able to become so fixated on a small issue while allowing another (underpinned by the same principles, just on a much wider scale) to go relatively unaddressed
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Re: Gender Pay Gap?

Unread postby TheBrunswickian » 26th March, 2017, 10:05 pm

The gender pay gap is difference between what men and women earn in general. Bob Hawke made it illegal to pay men and women different wages for the same job illegal back in the 80s.

No one is saying that male teachers earn more than female teachers for example. Overall, women generally work in professions that get paid less than industries men tend to work more in. Look at the number of women on corporate boards and then look at the number of women in teaching. Legal professions vs retail work. So while a woman serving on a corporate board will earn about the same as a male colleague, and a male teacher earns the same as a female teacher, the gap exists in the average between the two.

also we as men aren't exactly the best people to be talking about this
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Re: Gender Pay Gap?

Unread postby JonathanT88 » 26th March, 2017, 10:20 pm

TheBrunswickian wrote:also we as men aren't exactly the best people to be talking about this


Why not? We're just as capable of analysing statistics as women. If you're going to argue that we haven't had any "real experience" of discrimination, then I'd respond that nobody's individual experience of discrimination makes them entitled to speak about a problem which affects millions. In fact, I'd argue that person experience is likely to cloud objectivity and make them more prone to conflating personal experience with broader trends.

I don't understand the logic behind "x group can't discuss an issue which exclusively effects y" argument. It totally undermines academia too. :P
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Re: Gender Pay Gap?

Unread postby Knope » 26th March, 2017, 10:30 pm

Generalized income inequality is definitely the bigger issue and the good news is I think people are becoming more aware of it. Just look at the healthcare debate. For what must be the first time in recent American history, a majority of Americans now believe healthcare is a right, and that government should ensure health coverage. There will always be opposition from hard-line conservatives, but if things continue the way they are, I don't see why it's too optimistic to consider single payer as being maybe only a decade or two away. But now I'm detracting from the main point so I'll stop. :P
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Re: Gender Pay Gap?

Unread postby TheBrunswickian » 26th March, 2017, 11:52 pm

JonathanT88 wrote:
TheBrunswickian wrote:also we as men aren't exactly the best people to be talking about this


Why not? We're just as capable of analysing statistics as women. If you're going to argue that we haven't had any "real experience" of discrimination, then I'd respond that nobody's individual experience of discrimination makes them entitled to speak about a problem which affects millions. In fact, I'd argue that person experience is likely to cloud objectivity and make them more prone to conflating personal experience with broader trends.

I don't understand the logic behind "x group can't discuss an issue which exclusively effects y" argument. It totally undermines academia too. :P

I'm not saying we can't discuss it, but that we are not the best placed people to discuss it. This goes for anything. White people can talk about the impacts of racism, but they are not the best placed people to do so. And its even worse, in a situation such as this, when its only men talking about women's issues. Its all being told from a man's perspective. Yeah, we can discuss it, but the only variety in opinions is going to be between the ideology of the different men discussing an issue that impacts women. We shouldn't be talking about whether or not the pay gap exists, because, well... it does, we should be discussing what we as men can do to balance the scales.
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Re: Gender Pay Gap?

Unread postby Cxurujeto » 27th March, 2017, 2:09 am

JonathanT88 wrote:
TheBrunswickian wrote:also we as men aren't exactly the best people to be talking about this


Why not? We're just as capable of analysing statistics as women. If you're going to argue that we haven't had any "real experience" of discrimination, then I'd respond that nobody's individual experience of discrimination makes them entitled to speak about a problem which affects millions. In fact, I'd argue that person experience is likely to cloud objectivity and make them more prone to conflating personal experience with broader trends.

I don't understand the logic behind "x group can't discuss an issue which exclusively effects y" argument. It totally undermines academia too. :P


Agreed. Being in x group lends itself in things such as anecdotal evidence, but it also can sometimes maybe make conversation impartial due to bias.

Pity wrote:The gender wage gap is entirely a myth.

I posted this video before, but it does a great job in explaining why:
*youtube link*


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Re: Gender Pay Gap?

Unread postby TheBrunswickian » 27th March, 2017, 2:43 am

Cxurujeto wrote:
JonathanT88 wrote:
TheBrunswickian wrote:also we as men aren't exactly the best people to be talking about this


Why not? We're just as capable of analysing statistics as women. If you're going to argue that we haven't had any "real experience" of discrimination, then I'd respond that nobody's individual experience of discrimination makes them entitled to speak about a problem which affects millions. In fact, I'd argue that person experience is likely to cloud objectivity and make them more prone to conflating personal experience with broader trends.

I don't understand the logic behind "x group can't discuss an issue which exclusively effects y" argument. It totally undermines academia too. :P


Agreed. Being in x group lends itself in things such as anecdotal evidence, but it also can sometimes maybe make conversation impartial due to bias.

As I said, we can talk about it, but aren't best placed. And furthermore, it should not be the responsibility of group y to talk about the experiences of group x, but rather to talk about what group y can do to help group x.
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Re: Gender Pay Gap?

Unread postby Lochlan » 27th March, 2017, 11:14 am

Wow, it's nice that I've opened a conversation on this, but I'd reply like to the effects of pushing false statistics like 74 cents to the dollar, especially towards minors, and whether this is acceptable or not? I'd even push it as far as to say should teachers be informed on the truth of the gap so as to not spread misinformation.
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Re: Gender Pay Gap?

Unread postby Pity » 27th March, 2017, 12:35 pm

They absolutely shouldn't spread misinformation. I was taught 74 cents on the dollar myth last year in sociology. If I wasn't the innately skeptical person that I am, I would have believed it.
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Re: Gender Pay Gap?

Unread postby _Jay » 8th May, 2017, 4:44 pm

The gender pay gap is not a myth. For the UK you can look up the ONS's statistics online and see that men do indeed get paid more on average over their lifetime.

It is quite interesting though how some people explain why this is the case though. Many people believe it is to do with discrimination against women in the workplace. I do not personally think that is the case since that would be illegal and most companies wouldn't ever take that sort of risk. However, I do believe that women need to be encouraged to enter the various industries. I do believe there are a disproportionate amount of women in specific industries due to the specific gender roles men and women use to play. This is partly due to religion, such as Christianity in the UK, whereby women are expected to raise the children and do housework whereas men went out and did work. This obviously is not the case so much now. Here are some interesting stats though:
http://visual.ons.gov.uk/the-gender-pay-gap-what-is-it-and-what-affects-it/

Also I watched an interesting documentary called "The Red Pill" by Cassie Jaye, it is about Men's rights activists and feminism. I'd recommend watching it as it quite well balanced and gives an insight into some areas I did not even know existed
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Re: Gender Pay Gap?

Unread postby Pity » 8th May, 2017, 5:19 pm

_Jay wrote:The gender pay gap is not a myth. For the UK you can look up the ONS's statistics online and see that men do indeed get paid more on average over their lifetime.


Men typically choose higher-paying careers, so, of course, they are paid more over their lifetime.

_Jay wrote:I do believe there are a disproportionate amount of women in specific industries due to the specific gender roles men and women use to play. This is partly due to religion, such as Christianity in the UK, whereby women are expected to raise the children and do housework whereas men went out and did work.


I don't think religion has much to do with it. Women are more biologically apt to be homemakers, child carers, and other hospitality-related positions.

_Jay wrote:Also I watched an interesting documentary called "The Red Pill" by Cassie Jaye, it is about Men's rights activists and feminism. I'd recommend watching it as it quite well balanced and gives an insight into some areas I did not even know existed


I saw the trailer for it; it looks awesome. I'm going to watch it soon :D
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