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April 25, 2006

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Jim Durbin

If it were true, it would be terrible, but several salient facts stick out.

1) Large portions of the female population want men to make more (check out mating preferences of single women and the difficulties experienced by successful women in finding men wealthier and more successful then they are)
2) Women are not as aggressive at negotiation. (they simply don't ask for as much - perhaps because of point 1)
3) Women are not as likely to compete (Even women in highly successful academic programs show a marked preference for cooperation over competition)
4) The presence of a large bloc of women who do not want or ask for higher wages causes severe problems with the numbers put by the wage project.

And the kicker
5) Unmarried Single women without children make more than unmarried single men in the same industries.

If anything, it is the single people who should be complaining, as married men make more than all other groups.

Of course, we want married men to make more, as then women who choose to stay home can afford to do so, which brings societal benefits to everyone.

The Wage Project is something that is easy to get steamed about, but it's not based on very good statistics or an understanding of the strengths of men and women.

The GAO study which just came out, http://usgovinfo.about.com/cs/censusstatistic/a/womenspay.htm, says the problem is women are out of the workforce and more likely to take jobs that are part-time. That explains the 80 cents to one dollar gap.

There's a great book called Taking Sex Differences Seriously which follows a large number of studies to show that despite what is taught in schools now, men and women have different strengths.

The Wage Gap Myth, on the other hand, has significant reason to keep pushing the myth of women working more for less.

More resources:

Search "myth of the wage gap" on Google

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