Monday, November 28, 2011

The sex pay gap

According to Gaby Hinchcliffe in The Grauniad, we have managed to solve the pay gap between women and men.
According to official statistics released last week, the pay gap between men and women—that barometer of shifting power between the sexes—has quietly shrunk to a record low and among younger women has shot clearly into reverse. Women in their 20s now earn a solid 3.6% more on average than men their age, after narrowly overtaking them for the first time last year. The rise of the female breadwinner, it seems, was no blip, but the beginning perhaps of a social and sexual sea change.

Of course, Timmy has been banging on about this for some time now. And, as he says, there are two main reasons for any existing gap.
Overall it is in favour of men but that’s down to two things.
  1. Overall is comparing women in their 50s etc, people who did not receive the same education or career opportunities as the men of their age group. This is a problem that will be solved simply by time.

  2. Motherhood. The pay gap appears at the average age of primagravidae. We don’t actually have a gender pay gap any more. We have a motherhood pay gap. To change this you’re going to have to change biology and good luck with that in a mammalian species.

So, can we please declare this problem over and get on with solving some of the others that plague us?

All of which makes Jerry Hayes's article at Dale & Co. (a pretty site full of high-profile writers who know bugger all about anything) look like precisely what it is—a pathetic whinge backed up by no evidence whatsoever.
So how does Cameron woo the women back to the ballot paper? Simple. Show that they are being treated equally and fairly and that means, shock horror, that they should get paid the same rate for the same job that men do. It is hard to believe that in 2011 Britain the pay gender gap can still be up to 20%. It is a national disgrace.

Jerry Hayes is, apparently, "a former Conservative MP and leading barrister defending and prosecuting high profile cases", so it's no wonder that he is a clueless twit.

Unfortunately, his article is typical of that site—a mess of anecdote and personal opinion with not a single link to any evidence whatsoever. And whilst Jerry might be right that the law, as a profession, is full of useless, bigoted arseholes, this is hardly news, is it?


Smoochie said...

"a clueless twit"

Who are you and where have you stashed the real devil? I'd assume it was an error but there's a lot of distance between the 'i' and the 'a' on a keyboard...

Mark Wadsworth said...

Agreed, I've been saying the same thing for years.

interestingly, although having more kids seems to cause women to earn less (unsurprisingly enough) there is a positive correlation between how much men earn and how many kids they have (heck knows which causes which), therefore for a married couple who pool income and expenses (most of them), the negative motherhood pay gap is more or less cancelled out by the positive fatherhood pay gap.

Rosscoe said...

To be fair to Hayes, he's only taken at face value a much quoted statistic and plainly not had the benift of reading Tims long running debunking of it. The rest of his article seems pretty sound, i.e that the best people are the best people and that their type of genitals and skin colour aren't relevent.

Skimmer said...

The Economist quoted research that showed the principle reason for a pay gap was confidence. Men ask for more money. They also push for prestige assignments.

Anonymous said...

Men also die younger. Have you read the DM article about the female-to-male ex-serviceman copper who wants a man's pension, or woman's, I can't remember.

bewick said...

I've known women who managed both parenthood and a high flying career. Without exception they despised women who played the gender card. They, without exception, regarded such as losers who denigrated the women who succeeded by pure ability. In short LOSERS who had to use means other than real ability to progress.
The women I knew also found it demeaning to be told that women should get special consideration just because of their gender. Same applied to successful ethnics - THEY didn't want a "leg up". THEY, like the women, wanted to be judged on ability - not gender or colour.
There lies the issue. The competent don't need special consideration.

Steve Perrett said...

I thought this was about the cost of loose women...

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