Posted on | April 10, 2014 | 43 Comments
President Obama’s repetition of feminist “pay gap” lies — the false claim that women earn only 77 cents for every dollar men earn in the same jobs — has come back to haunt him, Jennifer Rubin says:
I’m betting the White House staffer who thought up the equal pay initiative is getting some fairly icy looks and snippy calls from Democrats.
Rubin cites a series of consequences, including this:
The White House discovered this week that calculations using average wages can yield unsatisfactory results. McClatchy newspapers did the math and reported that when the same standards that generated the 77-cent figure were applied to White House salaries, women overall at the White House make 91 cents for every dollar men make. White House spokesman Jay Carney protested that the review “looked at the aggregate of everyone on staff, and that includes from the most junior levels to the most senior.” But that’s exactly what the Census Department does.
The magic feminist “77 cents” number is derived from a crude comparison that, in essence, aggregates millions of apples-to-oranges comparisons. To compare the average income of all women to the average income of all men necessarily yields these false comparisons, because such crude averages do not take into consideration a host of factors that account for differences in income. Once you control for such factors — occupational specialty, years of education, etc. — the mythical “wage gap” evaporates. Caroline May at the Daily Caller reports:
The pay gap among women in the White House is more than twice as large as the average in the nation’s capital.
While female White House staffers earn about 88 cents for every dollar men in the White House make, women in the District earn about 95 cents for every dollar a men make, according to the most recent data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
That’s a 12-cent pay gap at the White House compared to a five-cent pay gap in the District of Columbia.
It’s always fun to play “gotcha” with liberals, using their own professed criteria to indict them for hypocrisy, but it’s important to remember that this is not ultimately the point of the exercise. When we call attention to the falseness of Democrat rhetoric by citing their inability to live up to the standards they would impose on others, our larger purpose should be to expose the erroneous beliefs that are embedded in liberal “standards.”
The radical egalitarian worldview, which sees “discrimination” and “social injustice” wherever inequality exists, and which proposes government regulation as the solution to such alleged problems, invariably produces “solutions” that make life worse for everyone — except, perhaps, for the bureaucrats who get paid to enforce the regulations. A free economy may not result in what everyone would call fairness, but it does reliably produce prosperity. The radical egalitarian goal of “social justice” is a mirage, as Friedrich Hayek explained, and the pursuit of mirages is a waste of human resources.