Equal pay for equal work. Its a mantra Hillary Clinton uses on the campaign trail at almost every stop, always to thunderous applause.
Come to think of it, and believe me I don't say this a lot about anything Hillary says, but it's actually a pretty good line. After all, how could ANYONE possibly disagree with that, right? Not in the 21st century anyway, not unless you're some kind of knuckle-dragging, fur-covered neanderthal who wants to beat women with clubs and keep them barefoot, pregnant, and in the cave, er, kitchen cooking you bologna sandwiches.
The premise, of course, is that women are NOT already receiving equal pay for equal work, that employers are basically hiring, for example, a man and a woman for the exact same job, except the woman is told something like this in the female orientation: [begin Southern drawl] "Sweet Cheeks, this job is just a teensy bit rough and stressful for a delicate flower such as yourself, so I'm sure you understand we won't be able to pay you as much as Bob because Bob doesn't have lady parts to hold him back."
Yeah, that's not happening, not anymore anyway. What IS happening is any employer that doesn't want to get sued into oblivion is paying people the same rate of pay for the same job. Why? Because equal pay for equal work is already on the books!
Since 1963, this has been the law of the land:
"No employer shall discriminate, within any establishment in which such employees are employed, between employees on the basis of sex by paying wages to employees in such establishment at a rate less than the rate at which he pays wages to employees of the opposite sex in such establishment for equal work on jobs[,] the performance of which requires equal skill, effort, and responsibility, and which are performed under similar working conditions, except where such payment is made pursuant to (i) a seniority system; (ii) a merit system; (iii) a system which measures earnings by quantity or quality of production; or (iv) a differential based on any other factor other than sex."
So, why all the fuss? Apparently, the law didn't go far enough, because that dastardly wage gap still exists, albeit on a smaller scale than before. The law merely leveled the legal playing field instead of actually achieving the results desired by social manipulators over the past 50 plus years.
According to the NWLC (National Women's Law Center), when the law was passed in 1963 there was a 41 cent wage gap on the dollar between men and women - women on average earned 59 cents for every dollar earned by a man. By 2011, that pay gap had shrunk to 23 cents, or 77 cents for every dollar.
And yet, despite the fact that a law exists on the books making pay inequality illegal, Hillary Clinton still wants "equal pay for equal work." The problem with this is that any efforts to actually achieve, by force of government, equality of results (as opposed to opportunity) is destined to utter failure.
Here's the obvious, yet politically-incorrect reason why - Women are biologically different!
Duh, right? Problem is, there are folks out there who do insist otherwise, as insane as that sounds. Some people insist that the fact that women aren't equally represented in, for example, the concrete laborer or the airline pilot fields means that employers who hire concrete laborers and airline pilots are sexist and just don't want women to enter.
So, let's tackle each field on its own considering biological differences.
Concrete laborers - First, it must be mentioned that, oddly enough, nobody is actually complaining about concrete laborers being mostly men, ostensibly because that field isn't sexy, or lucrative, enough to warrant complaining about.
Still, its worth noting that the wage gap has decreased over the years not only because of the law, but also because technology has made biological differences in strength more and more irrelevant in the workplace while at the same time making taking care of the home no longer a full-time endeavor. In the 1880's, it wasn't so much that men wanted to deny women the right to work backbreaking railroad or coal-mining jobs (although that was true) than it was the fact that women were biologically incapable, on average, of performing those jobs at the level of men without severe risk of injury. What is possible now wasn't even possible then.
So, it wasn't so much that men were sexist, but that the WORLD was sexist.
Thankfully, no longer! But still, an increasingly declining number of careers still require brawn, and concrete happens to be one of them.
However, we've still got airline pilots to deal with. Ain't no heavy lifting there! Just push a bunch of buttons and you're good to go. Easy peasy, right? So, why aren't women dominating THAT field? Could it be that maybe, biologically, women have the children and enough tend to want to be with them instead of in an airport hangar 24/7, enough at least to skew the numbers?
Interestingly, the NWLC report cites an increasing pay gap the older the person gets. Women ages 16-24 earn 92 percent of what men that age earns. The figure declines to 88 percent from ages 25-34, 73 percent from ages 45-64, and 70 percent for ages 65 and up.
Looking at the data as well as the facts as they are, it would seem that, while opportunity exists everywhere a capable woman wants to grab hold of it, enough women make choices - either in the trajectory of their careers or the careers they select in the first place - to cause a gap in what men and women make on average.
Given this, along with the fact that the market really determines what any job is worth (or it should, anyway), how on earth do you even attempt to rectify this using the force of government? Sure, you can try, but the unintended consequences will be devastating on the economy, our legal system and our societal fabric. How do I know this? It's what always happens when government goes from playing field leveling into the murky realm of equality of results.