The Bogus Wage Gap War

The Bogus Wage Gap War

February 21, 2013
Originally published in PJ Media

Additionally, women tend to work fewer hours than men, which could also partially explain this discrepancy in pay. As Hans Bader of the Competitive Enterprise Institute wrote on February 13:

As The Washington Post‘s Glenn Kessler notes, government data shows women work fewer hours than men, which explains much of the apparent pay gap: “since women in general work fewer hours than men in a year, the statistics used by the White House may be less reliable for examining the key focus of the legislation — wage discrimination.” I discuss some other unfounded claims made in support of the Paycheck Fairness Act at this link.

As Steve Tobak noted at CBS News,

Men are far more likely to choose careers that are more dangerous, so they naturally pay more. Top 10 most dangerous jobs (from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics): Fishers, loggers, aircraft pilots, farmers and ranchers, roofers, iron and steel workers, refuse and recyclable material collectors, industrial machinery installation and repair, truck drivers, construction laborers. They’re all male-dominated jobs. . .Men are far more likely to take work in uncomfortable, isolated and undesirable locations that pay more. Men work longer hours than women do. The average fulltime working man works six hours per week or 15 percent longer than the average fulltime working woman.

According to the federal Bureau of Labor Statistics, 92 percent of all workers who die on the job are men, even though only a bare majority of all workers are men. These examples are at odds with the assumption of many supporters of the Paycheck Fairness Act and the Ledbetter Act that pay disparities are simply the result of gender bias or sexism.

The Society for Human Resource Management contends the Paycheck Fairness Act “would effectively prohibit employers from using many legitimate factors to compensate their employees, including professional experience, education, training, employer need, local labor market rates, hazard pay, shift differentials and the profitability of the organization.”