Icelandic women walk off the job 14% early to protest 14% pay-gap


#1

Originally published at: http://boingboing.net/2016/10/30/icelandic-women-walk-off-the-j.html


#2

They are so far ahead of the U.S., and they’re still having to fight for equality.


#3

I was trying to find out how many managers and executives in Iceland are women, and ran across this study. I skimmed it briefly and it seems like a good read for those who are interested: http://mark.hi.is/sites/mark.hi.is/files/women_and_men_as_business_leaders_in_iceland_28032016_ensk_vef.pdf

For those who are wondering, it appears that Icelandic managers and executives are 20-25% women in Iceland, EXCEPT the large publicly traded companies, where that number plunges to 8%. The study also looks at the makeup of managing boards.


#4

I think inequality is like bigotry in that it’s sort of fractal. There are features of it at every scale, so when you progress, you have a sort of Zeno’s movement paradox, where you overcome a large inequality only to be faced with smaller and smaller-grained inequalities to get past.
But yeah, they’re still doing so much better than the US, where a significant percentage of people - including many women - refuse to acknowledge that inequality even exists. I frequently see people argue that if you adjust the data, the wage gap, for instance, disappears. Except that the studies that “adjust” the data still do show a wage gap (albeit not as high a gap), and the elements they discard to adjust the data are part of that inequality. Things like women working fewer hours because they’re expected to provide child care not expected of men, and women working in “lower-paying occupations,” even though studies show wages will go down for everyone when more women join a field - that is, wages are depressed in an occupation when it starts to become seen as “women’s work.” Step one is acknowledging you’ve got a problem, and we’ve got such a long ways to go just to get to that point…


#5

I think this passage says more about the author than it does about Iceland.


#6

To be fair, everyone who associates with human beings in an even vaguely capitalist system has to fight for equality at times. That said, it’s obvious that ladies have had to fight harder for less for too long, and that has to change. I support a single universal wage for this reason. Equal humanity = equal pay.


#7

#8

Don’t forget that salary negotiations usually favor men.


#9

What always strikes me is how small is Reykjavik’s parliament house and his front plaza.


#10


#11

Because men’s social life revolves around their work buddies, on every step of the ladder.


#12

sure, but that kinda puts the lie to ‘rational capitalism’, and ‘the sacred duty, the only duty, of every corporation is to make money for shareholders.’


#13

Is there anyone who actually believes that claim? I mean, in the actual business and financial worlds?


#14

Yeah, there’s a whole bunch of mechanisms that contribute to the gap, that one is especially pernicious in creating wage ceilings

It says more about the country in which the comment is being made - in the US, women do far more of the housework and child-rearing than men do, even when women are working equal - or greater - hours outside the home compared to their partners.


#15

Of course not, but do you think that stops them trotting it out whenever the natives get restless?


#16

Yeah, that’s what I meant; the author was reflecting their society. And, coming from a different society, that reflection is flat out hilarious.


#17

Yes. Not all, of course, but it isn’t a straw man. It kind of turned IBM into the shell of a company it is today.


#18

?

When have well-off white males ever had to fight for equality? From birth, they’re already “more equal” than others.


#19

We are not all on the same team over here in white maleland. Speaking truth to power has consequences even for one of us.


#20

Being ahead of the curve on Earth is a little like being in the top percentile of a remedial education* class.

*Or it would be if remedial ed was actually for learning deficiencies and not a dumping ground for kids who aren’t good at scanatron tests.

Economics, at least at the level of political football, isn’t real economics. It’s an idealized oversimplification, like talking about vectors of force in a high school science class without accounting for the myriad real world complications such as friction. The average public hardly ever hears about real economics, because economists are mathematicians, and mathematicians (with few exceptions) mostly aren’t great at explaining their fields in ordinary English. It’s like this old joke…

Milk production at a dairy farm was low, so the farmer wrote to the local university, asking for help from academia. A multidisciplinary team of professors was assembled, headed by a theoretical physicist, and two weeks of intensive on-site investigation took place. The scholars then returned to the university, notebooks crammed with data, where the task of writing the report was left to the team leader. Shortly thereafter the physicist returned to the farm, saying to the farmer, “I have the solution, but it works only in the case of spherical cows in a vacuum”.