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I had two nice young folks stop by my house last night canvassing for a candidate for a local State Senate race. Too much was covered in our conversation for a single post, but id like to make two points.

First, to their great credit, they were actually very interested in hearing what makes me tick and then they proceeded to try to sell me on how their candidate would represent that. but they were also very honest when i asked them questions about their positions. They honestly said, “we’ve never thought of that” in response to at least a half dozen of my questions. I told them they would get my vote if they merely began to ask themselves and their bosses why they believe what they do and if there is any chance that confounding evidence would make them reconsider.

A second point was that one of the three major platform positions they took was ensuring legislation would pass to support “equal pay for equal work.” I wasn’t about to give an economics lesson, but they were shocked to learn that a recent study of 150 major cities found that in 147 of them there was a wage premium for single women under age 35 over similar men.

They had to get going, but I would love to have asked them why they wouldn’t push for an equal pay amendment that worked the same way as this:http://savingsports.org/2012/09/24/title-ix-compliance-costs-dont-add-up/

What is particularly puzzling about the equal pay movement is that it largely comes from a group that wishes for much sharper progressive taxes on the rich as a way to equalize pay. So why not institute a “man tax” to get the same result for gender equality?

And of course, what is the policy proscription for the women they are kickin some men’s asses among recent labor market entrants?

4 Responses to “Equal Pay for Equal Work”

  1. Student says:

    Don Bourdeaux over at Cafe Hayek made a really great post almost two weeks ago that was related to this topic. The link is posted below. Perhaps you can this and some more of your own analysis over to the senate candidate. The fact that you got as much as you did out of the canvassers has to mean something, right?


  2. Harry says:

    “Equal pay for equal work” seems fair enough.

    Often, though, I hear dog whistles when the subject comes up:
    Do they mean the doctrine of Comparable Worth?

    This was a hot topic in the late ’60s and early ’70s, and may still be hot in progressive circles today. It is an attempt to correct the injustice of the free market whereby, for example, a bulldozer operator gets paid more per hour than a librarian. After all, the librarian may have a Masters degree, and the bulldozer operator just a high school diploma; the librarian spends his day helping people, including our children, while the bulldozer operator spends his day raping the environment, bulldozing trees and causing erosion, and worst of all, burning fuel and contributing to global warming. The question is, should they be paid in accordance with their value to “society”?

    Some Progressives want to intervene in these situations, as we as in writing and enforcing equal pay law; the dog whistle they and I hear beckons them.

    They may sincerely believe they are collectively capable of deciding what is fair. Others put more faith in free voluntary arrangements to do the job. The big side benefit of the latter is that it is free.

    Pardon me, WC, if I veered from your question.

  3. Speedmaster says:

    >> “I had two nice young folks stop by my house last night canvassing for a candidate for a local State Senate race.”

    Those poor poor souls. They had no idea what they were stepping into. 😉

  4. Harry says:

    Ha, ha, Speedmaster! Dick and Jane meet the Energizer Bunny.

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