The Other McCain

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How @ClaireShipman Ironically Proves Phyllis Schlafly Right About the ‘Pay Gap’

Posted on | April 16, 2014 | 27 Comments

The Left has been going nuts over an argument veteran conservative activist Phyllis Schlafly made about the “pay gap” between men and women. Schlafly referred to the pervasive phenomenon of hypergamy, i.e., “women typically choose a mate (husband or boyfriend) who earns more than she does.” Sociologists would say it is not merely higher income, but higher socio-economic status in general — including such factors as educational background — implicated in hypergamy. Women’s preference for high-status husbands is indisputable, as Schlafly says:

While women prefer to HAVE a higher-earning partner, men generally prefer to BE the higher-earning partner in a relationship. This simple but profound difference between the sexes has powerful consequences for the so-called pay gap.
Suppose the pay gap between men and women were magically eliminated. If that happened, simple arithmetic suggests that half of women would be unable to find what they regard as a suitable mate.
Obviously, I’m not saying women won’t date or marry a lower-earning men, only that they probably prefer not to. If a higher-earning man is not available, many women are more likely not to marry at all.

This set off all kinds of shrieky reactions on the Left, with Think Progress headlining their item, “Prominent Republican: Women Need To Be Paid Less So They Can Find Husbands.” But this distortion of Schlafly’s meaning only shows (a) the dishonesty of the Left and/or (b) their willful ignorance of social science. The truth of her observation — that any policy aimed at closing “the so-called pay gap” would diminish women’s prospects for finding higher-earning husbands, and thus make marriage less likely — cannot be disputed by facts or logic. But this is not the same as Schlafly saying “women need to be paid less.” Schlafly rightly regards the “pay gap” as evidence of how men and women make different choices that reflect their personal preferences. The gap is not explained by sexist discrimination, Schlafly says, but by human nature.

Well, ABC’s Claire Shipman shows up on the cover of The Atlantic, along with the BBC’s Katty Kay, presenting a feature, “Closing the Confidence Gap: Even successful women lack self-assurance at work. Men have too much.” Leaving unexamined their thesis, let’s focus in on certain biographical data Shipman supplied:

Claire . . . had a habit of telling people she was “just lucky” — in the right place at the right time — when asked how she became a CNN correspondent in Moscow while still in her 20s. And she, too, for years, routinely deferred to the alpha-male journalists around her, assuming that because they were so much louder, so much more certain, they just knew more. She subconsciously believed that they had a right to talk more on television. But were they really more competent? Or just more self-assured?

Check Wikipedia: The daughter of an Ohio State University law professor, Shipman graduated from Columbia University, where she studied Russian before landing an internship with CNN. So if she was “just lucky” to be posted to Moscow, she was highly qualified.

Ah, but what about those “alpha-male journalists”? She married her boss: CNN Moscow bureau chief Stephen Hurt was 44 and Shipman was 28 when they married in 1991. After she returned to the United States, Shipman and her first husband separated in 1996, and soon she began dating Time magazine White House correspondent Jay Carney, whose Russian language studies at Yale University had also helped him land a Moscow bureau assignment in the 19990s. Shipman went from one “alpha-male journalist” husband to another.

Perhaps many older professional women like Claire Shipman, now 51, take for granted the availability of high-achieving husbands. Perhaps she does not consider the advantages — not to say privilege — conferred on her by her father’s status as a university law professor, nor does she think of the career advantage she might have gained by marrying the CNN Moscow bureau chief. No one need disparage Shipman’s abilities and hard work in saying that her connections with high-status males (first her father, and then her two husbands) have been beneficial to her.

So, what about that “pay gap”? As Phyllis Schlafly says, any policy that could eliminate the “pay gap” would, of necessity, reduce the number of men in higher-paying jobs. Young women in the future would have less opportunity to access the kind of advantages that Claire Shipman derived from her association with high-status males.

Schlafly, a very influential and successful woman, cannot be stereotyped as someone who is opposed to female achievement. The rhetoric coming from the Left in regard to the “pay gap” instead reflects feminist hostility to male achievement, and proposes to inhibit male achievement by coercive government policies to bring about an artificial regime of “equality” — a condition that could only be implemented by discouraging the hiring and promotion of men.

Such policies probably would not much harm the children of the elite — Claire Shipman and Jay Carney’s son and daughter — but what would be the effect on the middle and lower classes?

Answer: The policy-making elite don’t give a damn about them.

As long as liberals can congratulate themselves on doing their part for Equality and Progress — Shipman and Carney decorate their  home with Soviet-era posters —  they are indifferent to the actual impact of their policies on the lives of the toiling masses.

And of course, there is a “pay gap” at the White House, as if anyone needed further proof of liberal hypocrisy.



27 Responses to “How @ClaireShipman Ironically Proves Phyllis Schlafly Right About the ‘Pay Gap’”

  1. RS
    April 16th, 2014 @ 12:20 pm

    “Closing the Confidence Gap: Even successful women lack self-assurance at work. Men have too much.”

    I fully realize the above is just a subtitle, but it does encapsulate the Leftist view of the world. All is zero-sum, as if “self-confidence” is a commodity which is parceled out or better, appropriated by people who get more than their “fair share.”

    As for the balance of the post, it dovetails nicely with the studies showing that marriage is quite strong among the elites, because they can afford it, in spite of the policies which they champion for others. The fact is, the main casualties in Feminism’s war on tradition have been women who heretofore could rely upon Society to maintain incentives for being wives and mothers. Fifty years ago, a husband who left his wife would lose most of the marital property and pay alimony for breach of promise besides in order to make sure the wife was not damaged financially by his philandering. Not so, today, where the same wife is expected–kids or no–to go out and earn a living, even if that means the children are adversely affected.

    Toss in Phyllis Schafly’s spot-on observations about personal choices and you see that men want to be the breadwinners as a matter of pride and self-esteem; women want that as well. Some of us believe that to be ordained by a Creator; it may be an evolutionary adaption. Regardless, it is, and no amount of carping about the nefarious Patriarchy is going to change that.

  2. jkpalmdale
    April 16th, 2014 @ 12:23 pm

    Excellent as usual

  3. Quartermaster
    April 16th, 2014 @ 12:50 pm

    The ‘why’ of why women would prefer high status men goes back a very long time. Back in the “stone age” women judged a man by his masculinity because it meant the difference between living and dying for her and her kids. Manly men had high social status for that very reason. Earning power is the current proxy for that and it is understandable that a woman will settle for a lot if she gets that in a man.
    I know a very lovely Attorney who is not married in her late 40s because she has not been able to cross paths with a man that fulfills that feminine imperative. I know there are many others out there and it is a large reason why many women feel put upon by men.

  4. RS
    April 16th, 2014 @ 1:05 pm

    Fortunately for me, humans have evolved to where a sense of humor combined with an ability to make the house payment outweighed reliance on buff muscles and a surfeit of edged weapons during the courtship of my long-suffering wife of a quarter century.


  5. Eric Ashley
    April 16th, 2014 @ 1:25 pm

    A sense of humor might be a marker for Confident, Perceptive, and Quick-Witted,,,,which are all useful traits in a protector. Sure Og the Big and Stupid is useful as a protector, but so is Stabs In the Back.

  6. Quartermaster
    April 16th, 2014 @ 1:59 pm

    Age and treachery will be youth and skill.
    Big, but not stupid, is a good trait in a protector for when physical force is needed, unless Mr. Colt’s invention can be brought to bear. The rest in the list are every bit as important in a protector.

  7. Quartermaster
    April 16th, 2014 @ 2:01 pm

    Such things were wired into mankind at the creation. The fall brought out some things quite forcefully since that fall introduced violence into the world, and the desire for women to be protected so they can raise their kids in peace is strong in them.

  8. texlovera
    April 16th, 2014 @ 2:44 pm

    Why look: another heaping crock of bull in The Atlantic. I almost feel sorry for the nitwits who buy their crap…

  9. Durasim
    April 16th, 2014 @ 2:46 pm

    “Feminist hostility to male achievement” doesn’t begin to describe it.

    One of things that feminists necessarily despise is a traditional and functional familial arrangement, with a breadwinning male and caregiving female (and offspring that are all biologically theirs, not an assortment of step and half siblings). What infuriates feminists even more is when such traditional families demonstrate advancement and success in life, like when the husband has a high status and well paying position, the wife expresses satisfaction and pride with her role and family. The feminists prefer that such retrograde families disappear, or be relegated to trailer parks on skid row so that propagandists can make condescending documentaries about the miseries of heterosexuality.

    And they are implementing steps to make that a reality. Feminists and their cohorts have declared that if any professional male has a stay-at-home wife who cares for offspring and such, then that male has an unfair and unjust advantage over the single mothers and working mothers and lesbians and male homosexuals who compete for positions (and who now enjoy political favor). In their view, a male who works at the primary breadwinner is not a “breadwinner” at all, but is a parasite who exploits and abuses his non-working wife and her domestic labor. Therefore, they demand that any such “breadwinning” males be disfavored and excluded from hiring or promotion. Since feminists have not yet eradicated such traditional spouses and families to their satisfaction, they must currently content themselves with using indirect measures to disrupt and destroy such families, like inhibiting the economic prospects or working husbands and fathers. If more potential male breadwinners are shut out from hiring and promotion, then that probably means more divorces, as well as aborted marriages that never were. This kind of family ruination makes the feminists swoon.

  10. maniakmedic
    April 16th, 2014 @ 3:01 pm

    It doesn’t help that feminism has been actively attacking the masculine, making being a real man an unattractive proposition. So we end up being surrounded by guys who, believing the piles of bullshit coming out of feminists’ mouths, turn themselves into mirror gazing, skin cream using, wimpy little metrosexuals thinking it is somehow attractive to look just one level off of drag queen. But hey, they’re totes masculine and manly because despite the manicured nails and the girly skinny jeans and pink polo shirts they’ve got a little bit of facial scruff. I see guys like that and want to kick them in the nuts just to see if they actually have any.

    If metrosexuals are the future of masculinity, kill me now, because I will never be attracted to that. It’s bad enough as it is right now where, even in the military, I’m surrounded by guys I could beat the shit out of. I myself am almost 5’10” and while I’m strong for a GIRL, I’m not strong for a GUY, so that’s pretty freaking sad.

  11. Rosalie
    April 16th, 2014 @ 3:04 pm

    It’s not only a magazine like The Atlantic. I receive three or four different magazines from a friend when she’s done reading them. Believe me, they all lean left no matter if they’re a Martha Stewart magazine or a health magazine. Most have some kind of test to see just how happy and fullfilling your life is. And there’s usually something about global warming to boot. They all promote this kind of stuff.

  12. maniakmedic
    April 16th, 2014 @ 3:08 pm

    THIS. This this this.

    You cannot have a captive audience of idiots willing to soak up bullshit if they are happy with their lives. So you make women believe they can’t ever be happy as a housewife and you make it impossible for men to be happy being the breadwinner by hamstringing their earnings (whether by strong-arming companies in the name of “social justice” or using the government to steal their money in the form of ever more burdensome taxes, doesn’t really matter).

  13. OyeVe
    April 16th, 2014 @ 3:26 pm

    Just so much conspiratorial bullshit, and reduces human beings to the level of dumb beasts which due our consciousness we are clearly set apart from. Well, maybe not you, but most of us.

  14. OyeVe
    April 16th, 2014 @ 3:28 pm

    And of course you have the baaaahhing sheep who mindlessly approves. And aren’t you a working woman? I guess you’re a threat to “traditional households”! Schlafly is living in the stone age. The old bag needs to die off already because she has ZERO place in the modern world.

  15. RS
    April 16th, 2014 @ 3:57 pm

    Quite so.

  16. RS
    April 16th, 2014 @ 4:04 pm

    You obviously don’t read much, eschewing acquiring knowledge and rational analysis in favor of playing with yourself and keyboarding comments on the internet with one hand.

  17. Durasim
    April 16th, 2014 @ 4:06 pm

    It is “conspiratorial” in that it involves persons and groups complaining and devising ways to modify society to conform to their expectations. That happens every minute of every day since time immemorial. There is nothing fake or “bullshit” about that. The feminists make no secret about their disdain for breadwinning males with stay-at-home female spouses. They even argue that breadwinning males are an inherently pernicious, sexist influence in the workplace because their traditional domestic lives apparently cause them to infect the workplace with their retrograde home influences.

    They suggest that breadwinning males and stay at home females should enact and demonstrate egalitarian domestic practices to combat the inherent sexism of their living arrangement and to discourage their children from emulating a sexist model of family.

    And even creatures with reflective self-awareness respond and are subject to socio-economic incentives and penalties. And socio-economic incentives and penalties are subject to political forces and influences that seek to guide and coerce people to behave in certain ways. This applies to everyone whether Ph.D’s or welfare freeloaders (who are sometimes one in the same).

  18. maniakmedic
    April 16th, 2014 @ 4:30 pm

    Hey everyone, the troll has come out to play! So, what kind of dance will you favor us all with today?

    April 16th, 2014 @ 4:35 pm


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  22. sdharms
    April 17th, 2014 @ 7:59 am

    Who in their right mind thinks Jay Carney is “alpha male”? He is sniveling little Dweeb. THis is why , if push comes to shove, the left will not win. Yes, let them give peace a chance. I will be reloading.

  23. Daniel O'Brien
    April 17th, 2014 @ 9:18 am


  24. maniakmedic
    April 17th, 2014 @ 11:44 am

    I’m going with this meaning we’re well on the way to Dune and I’m awaiting the coming of the Kwizatz Haderach.

  25. Daniel O'Brien
    April 17th, 2014 @ 5:44 pm

    Fear is the mind-killer.

  26. texlovera
    April 18th, 2014 @ 12:30 pm

    Very true. Which is why I don’t subscribe to anything anymore; I get my news and other information from the web…

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