Diary

Get Your Hard Hat, Lilly

Here’s a proposition for the feminists: Let’s make a law called the Women’s Equal Employment Act where the government forces females to work in coal mines, on oil rigs, on railroads, in construction and manufacturing.

 

That law would represent government-enforced  “equality” in the American workplace where the sexes share the burden of the hard work after females have been dodging it for millennia. Just as the government is going to get further involved in private business decisions with the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act of 2009 wage equality law which was signed by president Obama on January 29, 2009.

 

Here is the story of Ledbetter from wikipedia.org

 

Lilly Ledbetter was a supervisor at Goodyear Tire and Rubber’s plant in Gadsden, Alabama, from 1979 until her retirement in 1998. For most of those years, she worked as an area manager, a position largely occupied by men. Initially, Ledbetter’s salary was in line with the salaries of men performing substantially similar work. Over time, however, her pay slipped in comparison to the pay of male area managers with equal or less seniority. By the end of 1997, Ledbetter was the only woman working as an area manager and the pay discrepancy between Ledbetter and her 15 male counterparts was stark: Ledbetter was paid $3,727 per month; the lowest paid male area manager received $4,286 per month, the highest paid, $5,236

 

So let’s look at this rationally. Imagine you own a business and you pay all your different employees at all different rates, as most businesses do, based on the employee’s merits, value to the company, length of service, skills, likeability etc.

 

Now imagine you pay Employee A $25 an hour and Employee B $30 an hour even though they do roughly the same job. Is this fair?

 

Well, if you know nothing about either employee, how can you possibly judge? Yet by making law on the basis of only criterion – the employee’s sex –  you are not even considering myriad other factors. Perhaps Employee B is a much better worker who contributes more to the company. Perhaps Employee B has been with the company longer. Perhaps you as the business owner like Employee B better personally and wish to reward him/her.

 

In any event, it is nobody’s business what a private company pays its employees.

 

The Fair Pay Act is a result of a lawsuit brought by Ledbetter who felt that as a female that she should be paid the same as better-paid male employees doing the same job. Yet what is this act and what does it do?

 

This is a piece of left-wing legislation that will force companies to open up their books so that any employee can find out what other employees are making. This is a way to cause chaos in the workplace, with workers pitted against one another. Imagine the anger if Employee A finds out that Employee B is making much more money when Employee A always thought they were making the same. Then of course the government comes in to act as referee and make it all better.

 

Here’s an excerpt from answer.com Women In Business about Ledbetter:

 

Lilly signed a contract with her employer that she would not discuss pay rates with other workers. She had no way of knowing that she was being underpaid until just before her retirement when a source that remains anonymous today, slipped a note into her mailbox. The note listed the salaries of three other men doing the same who were being paid $4,286 to $5,236 per month. Lilly was only making $3,727 per month.

 

Thus someone broke the company’s confidentiality code to give Ledbetter the salary information. This is how liberals operate; they break the law and breach private contracts and agreements at will to get their way. Then they make their own laws and prosecute people who break them.

 

This Fair Pay law is a way for government to impose ‘equal pay’ plans on businesses, despite the fact that no two workers are alike. But that is the way that socialism operates – everyone is the same, according to their theory.

 

So if we are going to use government to force business to open its books, let’s use government to force women to do the gut-busting jobs that men have done for millennia in coal mines, on railroads, in construction…

 

See the point? Once you start to use government coercion, where does it end?

 

Today it ends where liberals want it to end. Because they are the ones using government to do the coercing.

 

Who says Ledbetter was a good employee? Perhaps she was frequently late, took too many days off, or simply was a malcontent. Yet she has managed to force a law that would impose pay equity on employers. Perhaps she was an excellent employee with a sterling attendance record. That makes no difference. Because it is the business owner’s decision alone what to pay employees.

 

Here is how Obama introduced the signing of the legislation:

 

“Lilly Ledbetter did not set out to be a trailblazer or a household name. She was just a good hard worker who did her job — and she did it well — for nearly two decades before discovering that for years, she was paid less than her male colleagues for doing the very same work. Over the course of her career, she lost more than $200,000 in salary, and even more in pension and Social Security benefits — losses that she still feels today.

 

Yet Goodyear could easily explain the discrepancy this way: That Ledbetter’s $44,724 annual salary was an excellent salary for people living in Gadsden, Alabama, and that Goodyear paid the highest-paid man $62,832 to reward him with an even better salary. Perhaps that man was a sole breadwinner while we know that Ledbetter was not. Why should Ledbetter complain when many of her neighbors certainly were making much less and had fewer benefits than the employee of a national firm like Goodyear?

 

Answer: To cause trouble, that is why. Because that is the way that socialism works, constantly agitating people no matter the logic of the circumstance, and creating envy among employees, which is the most powerful emotion of all.

 

The point of this legislation is to set up a system under which all workers feel entitled to the salary of the highest-paid employee, even when their wages may be a perfectly good salary. This is intended to weaken private business and to draw wealth out. And to see the result, just look at the dying Big 3 car companies in Detroit with their $70+ per hour union-enforced wage/benefit/pension costs for many assembly-line workers.

 

George Washington warned specifically that business must be regulated, but that government must never set wages or prices. This is a step in the wrong direction.

 

Here is Obama again:

 

“Equal pay is by no means just a women’s issue — it’s a family issue. It’s about parents who find themselves with less money for tuition and child care; couples who wind up with less to retire on; households where one breadwinner is paid less than she deserves; that’s the difference between affording the mortgage — or not; between keeping the heat on, or paying the doctor bills — or not. And in this economy, when so many folks are already working harder for less and struggling to get by, the last thing they can afford is losing part of each month’s paycheck to simple and plain discrimination.”

 

Question for Obama: Since your Democrat party has expanded government to the point where the average family pays 50% of its income in taxes, why are you suddenly so concerned about Americans’ economic well-being?

 

Here’s a quote from Lilly Ledbetter at the signing ceremony:

 

“Goodyear will never have to pay me what it cheated me out of. In fact, I will never see a cent from my case. But with the passage and President’s signature today, I have an even richer reward.

 

Question for Ledbetter: Cheated? They employed you for 19 years. Why do you have no appreciation for the fact that you had a steady job with a great company with full benefits for all those years? This is seeing the glass half-empty… as liberals always do. And for Ledbetter to use that type of language shows that perhaps she was the type of employee who indeed may have been disliked by the Goodyear people. 

 

Perhaps now we could use the Fair Pay Act as a model to start to investigate one other inconvenient truth about America today, and try to figure out how the government might remedy it: Why are the people who have lost jobs in this recession overwhelmingly male, according to this excerpt from BusinessWeek?:

 

From last November through this April, American women aged 20 and up gained nearly 300,000 jobs, according to the household survey of the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). At the same time, American men lost nearly 700,000 jobs. You might even say American men are in recession, and American women are not.

 

And what is the reason for this great inequality? Here’s BusinessWeek:

 

Simply put, men have the misfortune of being concentrated in the two sectors that are doing the worst: manufacturing and construction. Women are concentrated in sectors that are still growing, such as education and health care.

 

This obviously is why we need the Women’s Equal Employment Act, to force women into construction, manufacturing, oil drilling, coal mines etc., in order to share the pain of the recession equally and to allow men to have higher wages by forcing companies to give them jobs in education and health care.

 

Thank heavens the government is going to make everything “equal”.  Now, where do we MEN file our lawsuit??

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