Monday, May 7, 2012

Paycheck Fairness Act...

Being against something named the .“Paycheck Fairness Act” sounds like being against motherhood and apple pie, doesn't it?  Of course, that's the entire reason for the name in the first place.

This is such an obvious recipe for disaster that one hardly knows where to start.  It's really a way of imposing the sorts of controls over compensation normally associated with unions on the rest of society – the productive part of society.  The assumption underlying this act is that women are being paid less than men today for the same work.  I don't doubt that there's some of this going on, but I also don't doubt that in certain workplaces and in certain professions, men are being paid less than women.  The part of this that's very difficult to measure is the “same work” bit.  In my own profession (software engineering), women are quite rare still.  I don't know the exact numbers, but by my firsthand experience it's well under 10%.  My profession's male skew is exactly the sort of thing that laws like this deal with stupidly.  The assumption will be that the skew is prima facie evidence of underlying bias – and that pay differentials are the underlying reason.

Bottom line: if this law passes, eventually I will most likely be asked to take a pay cut.  Because I am a male.  Not because I'm incompetent, not because I've done something wrong.  Just because of my genes.

We are roaring headlong down the road to cultural self-destruction.  Remember that when you vote this November...

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