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Opening Arguments

Reality gap

Is this an indication of what Gregg would do as governor, waste his energy and our time on something that's not even a real issue?

INDIANAPOLIS | Democrat John Gregg has vowed that women in Indiana will earn equal pay for equal work if he's elected governor.

Citing statistics showing the average Hoosier woman earns 74 cents on the dollar compared to a man, and even less if the woman is Hispanic or African-American, the former Indiana House speaker said "we can do better."

"We are talking about making sure our mothers, sisters, daughters and wives are treated with dignity, and have their work rewarded with wages the same as any other citizen," Gregg said.

As governor, Gregg said he will identify and promote businesses that support equal-pay practices, establish a governor's award honoring companies that practice gender equality, create a toll-free telephone hotline for Hoosiers to report gender discrimination in the workplace and focus on creating high-paying jobs with benefits that accommodate the needs of working parents.

Never mind that all that silly government falderal like a governor's committee and a "gender discrimination hotline" is just make-work window dressing that wouldn't get anything accomplished even when applied to a real problem. The idea he's peddling -- that America is still a hotbed of anti-femal worker discrimination -- is pure nonsense.

The "gender gap" in pay has been debunked over and over. Carrie Lukas summed up the case pretty well earlier this year in Forbes:

The wage gap statistic, however, doesn’t compare two similarly situated co-workers of different sexes, working in the same industry, performing the same work, for the same number of hours a day.  It merely reflects the median earnings of all men and women classified as full-time workers.

The Department of Labor’s Time Use Survey, for example, finds that the average full-time working man spends 8.14 hours a day on the job, compared to 7.75 hours for the full-time working woman. Employees who work more likely earn more.  Men working five percent longer than women alone explains about one-quarter of the wage gap.

There are numerous other factors that affect pay.  Most fundamentally, men and women tend to gravitate toward different industries.

But I'm being insensitive to "our mothers, sisters, daughters and wives" who aren't being "treated with dignity," aren't I? Call it anti-pandering. Yes, there are creeps who pay women less than they deserve just because theyr'e women, just as there are greedy capitalists who try to screw people out of pay for a lot of reasons or no reason at all. Not a job for the Gender Police, though.