Author Topic: Women and Mustachianism (Take 2)  (Read 28624 times)

impaire

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Re: Women and Mustachianism (Take 2)
« Reply #150 on: December 11, 2013, 10:48:14 AM »

Maybe more billboard ads are targeted towards women?  More women read magazines, so those are more targeted?

Like I said, I don't know.

Either way, I think companies are indiscriminate when it comes to consumerism - everyone is green (money) to them.

True that advertising is gender-targeted depending on the type of media you are exposing yourself to. And in fact, women are underrepresented in advertising: they make about 85% of household purchase, and are "proportionally" represented in ads for food or house supplies, BUT they also decide on 50% or more of car or consumer electronics purchases, which you would never believe by surveying the ads for these sectors or by looking at the ad dollars targeted at them versus men (source: http://money.cnn.com/2004/09/22/news/midcaps/advertising_women. tbh I also have at the back of my mind several studies from when I worked in marketing, but while the general knowledge is not proprietary, I can't share the sources. I'm fine with challenge if anyone doesn't believe me, I'm aware that personal authority claims are... flimsy). I have never seen the data for beer and alcohol in general, but I bet the money is also disproportionately spent to cater to male audiences.

Women are subjected to much more looks-related advertising, as per Catherine's comment (http://womeninads.weebly.com/statistics.html), but so many of the "male" ads play on status insecurity and group acceptance, I honestly can't decide how to weigh them against one another except to say that it's all a bunch of nefarious horseshut...

randymarsh

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Re: Women and Mustachianism (Take 2)
« Reply #151 on: December 11, 2013, 10:58:03 AM »
One of Betty Friedan's main arguments in The Feminine Mystyque was about how women's consumerism leads to inequality.

Wasn't it women's rise in equality (working & earning their own money) that allowed them to be such profitable consumers in the first place? Bit ironic if that's the case.

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madgeylou

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Re: Women and Mustachianism (Take 2)
« Reply #152 on: December 11, 2013, 11:12:29 AM »
One of Betty Friedan's main arguments in The Feminine Mystyque was about how women's consumerism leads to inequality.

Wasn't it women's rise in equality (working & earning their own money) that allowed them to be such profitable consumers in the first place? Bit ironic if that's the case.

i don't think this was what friedan was writing about. her book pre-dates the rise of women in the workplace (1963). her book was more about why women who seemed to have it all -- stereotypical betty draper suburban housewife types -- were so unhappy in their lives. pretty good synopsis of the book on wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Feminine_Mystique

ShortInSeattle

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Re: Women and Mustachianism (Take 2)
« Reply #153 on: December 11, 2013, 11:25:16 AM »
Personally I think that equality will be reached when children are no longer a part of "Women and Mustachianism" type posts, nor are they the second theme of "women and finance" "women and ____" anything.  When we can talk about women as women and not as mothers/potential mothers, then women will have become men's equal.   

This.

I admit that I've never felt disadvantaged as a female in the workplace. I've gotten good jobs promotions, been a manager and now I am self-employed.

I also happen to be childfree.

I wonder how many of the concerns about women in business are really about parenthood. Because women do much of the caregiving, we talk about discrimination/disadvantage as a women's issue instead of a parenting issue.


Albert

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Re: Women and Mustachianism (Take 2)
« Reply #154 on: December 11, 2013, 11:48:59 AM »
I wonder how many of the concerns about women in business are really about parenthood. Because women do much of the caregiving, we talk about discrimination/disadvantage as a women's issue instead of a parenting issue.

Most perhaps, but that doesn't make it any less relevant. 3/4 of male managers I know in our company have children and it never hindered their professional careers. Why should it be different for women?

randymarsh

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Re: Women and Mustachianism (Take 2)
« Reply #155 on: December 11, 2013, 11:55:48 AM »
I also happen to be childfree.

I wonder how many of the concerns about women in business are really about parenthood. Because women do much of the caregiving, we talk about discrimination/disadvantage as a women's issue instead of a parenting issue.

I think this is much more responsible for the pay and leadership gap than simple discrimination. Once you enter management and executive type positions, your time commitment goes up. You're expected to answer the phone and emails 24/7, plus there's all kinds of things you do that aren't directly "work".

Neither women nor men can have it all. I read an article a long time ago (wish I could dig it up...) that looked into the parenting situation of executives at large corporations. The key take away was if that executive had kids, they either had a stay at home parent or made enough money to hire help. This was true regardless of gender.
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ShortInSeattle

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Re: Women and Mustachianism (Take 2)
« Reply #156 on: December 11, 2013, 12:54:46 PM »
I wonder how many of the concerns about women in business are really about parenthood. Because women do much of the caregiving, we talk about discrimination/disadvantage as a women's issue instead of a parenting issue.

Most perhaps, but that doesn't make it any less relevant. 3/4 of male managers I know in our company have children and it never hindered their professional careers. Why should it be different for women?

I never said it wasn't relevant. I never said it *should* be different for women. :)

If the primary caretakers have a harder time advancing at work, and if that burden falls more heavily on women, the next question is what do we do about that?

A good start might be for couples to negotiate up front about the division of labor when kids arrive. And for women who want to succeed career-wise to look for a spouse who will support that goal.

Those dads you know who don't let kids slow them down... What is different for them compared to moms? Does their spouse do the lion's share of care? If so, that is something the couple can negotiate, no?







smalllife

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Re: Women and Mustachianism (Take 2)
« Reply #157 on: December 11, 2013, 01:05:00 PM »
I wonder how many of the concerns about women in business are really about parenthood. Because women do much of the caregiving, we talk about discrimination/disadvantage as a women's issue instead of a parenting issue.

Most perhaps, but that doesn't make it any less relevant. 3/4 of male managers I know in our company have children and it never hindered their professional careers. Why should it be different for women?

I never said it wasn't relevant. I never said it *should* be different for women. :)

If the primary caretakers have a harder time advancing at work, and if that burden falls more heavily on women, the next question is what do we do about that?

A good start might be for couples to negotiate up front about the division of labor when kids arrive. And for women who want to succeed career-wise to look for a spouse who will support that goal.

Those dads you know who don't let kids slow them down... What is different for them compared to moms? Does their spouse do the lion's share of care? If so, that is something the couple can negotiate, no?

+1
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Roses

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Re: Women and Mustachianism (Take 2)
« Reply #158 on: December 11, 2013, 08:57:06 PM »

A good start might be for couples to negotiate up front about the division of labor when kids arrive. And for women who want to succeed career-wise to look for a spouse who will support that goal.

Those dads you know who don't let kids slow them down... What is different for them compared to moms? Does their spouse do the lion's share of care? If so, that is something the couple can negotiate, no?

After a while, yes.  But for the first several months there is no sub for the mom unless you make men start breastfeeding.  The whole pumping at work thing is such a drag and adds another level of stigma on the mom who's taking 20 minute breaks every couple hours, filling the office fridge with her breast milk, lactating during meetings, etc.  And the more evidence of the benefits of longer breastfeeding the more educated moms choose to breastfeed longer, the longer this is an issue at work.  Not to mention the miserable or nonexistent maternity leaves that we have in this country.  A 3 month break is seen as luxrious and disruptive to the work flow even though it's essential for new mothers and new babies.  A 6 month break is virtually unheard of here, though standard in other countries.  More than that and you may as well quit.  Just this 'hiccup' (as an old male boss put it) can cause problems for a female professional and the way she is seen by her superiors.  And if she does this every 2 or 3 years while having kids it can really impact her career.  Imagine a woman who has 3 kids in the span of 6 years, for each one she takes 3-6 months off (very rare here) and even while she's at work, she's pumping, she's tired from overnight feedings and eventually gets pregnant again.  Many just decide it's easier to stay home for that period.  But that's a long time away from the work force or continuously interrupting a career.  There is no system in place to safeguard a woman's career in this situation.  So, I don't agree that true equality will come when we stop talking about parenting and women at work.  I think it will come when we specifically address parenting and women at work and we take steps to accommodate it rather than ignore it.

As for later, when the last kid is already beyond that stage, I still think the decision to stay home comes down to who makes less money.  The difference in salaries for women encourage more couples to choose the mother as the stay-home parent.  This in turn keeps more women out of the work force, and I suppose it's a bit of a vicious cycle.

smalllife

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Re: Women and Mustachianism (Take 2)
« Reply #159 on: December 12, 2013, 05:24:13 AM »
A 3 month break is seen as luxrious and disruptive to the work flow even though it's essential for new mothers and new babies.  A 6 month break is virtually unheard of here, though standard in other countries.  More than that and you may as well quit.  Just this 'hiccup' (as an old male boss put it) can cause problems for a female professional and the way she is seen by her superiors.  And if she does this every 2 or 3 years while having kids it can really impact her career. . . . . .  So, I don't agree that true equality will come when we stop talking about parenting and women at work.  I think it will come when we specifically address parenting and women at work and we take steps to accommodate it rather than ignore it.

When ALL human beings are free to take a 3-6 month sabbatical to do something they find meaningful, yet exhausting, that they can't do while working a full time job, then we will have reached equality between parents and non parents.   Mothers seem to have the only "career" break excuse - just look at the people on this board who want to take 3-6 months off of work but won't have anything to show for it so are afraid to take a much needed break.  When you miss or are distracted for a quarter of your early career, why shouldn't there be an impact? I'm all for support for new parents, just not at the expense of those who don't want children.  A paid 6 month break (or hell, unpaid with a guaranteed job at the end) for everyone once every 3-5 years . . . do you think that would happen?  Why do mothers (and occasionally fathers, who should definitely have more paternity time) get to do that?  What if a non parent wants to write a book, travel, take care of a sick puppy, visit with elderly family beyond FMLA leave (or take care of a significant other not covered by FMLA), volunteer for a 3 month project, etc. etc.

 Parenting is all well and good, but it should not be privileged over every other life choice.  When I hear that parenting should be accommodated at the office even more than it is now - parents leaving early for sick kids, practices, maternity leave and breastfeeding while the rest of us pick up the slack because it's not worth it to hire someone in their place for 6 months to 1 year, it's really frustrating.  And yes, it IS disruptive to the workplace.  It leaves everyone else doing 150% when they were already at full capacity.  Then the moms come back and complain that they don't get to see their kid enough - you should plan for that and not burden the rest of us!  Parents already get soooo many perks and privileges that they don't even see.  The day someone can rush out early because their pet needs to go to the vet (just using sickness as an equalizer) with the same understanding and social approval as the parent picking up their sick kid from school, then we are all treated equally as humans.   Until that day I will be treated as a potential mother in the workplace, not as a worker.

Sorry for writing a novel, parenting while work is important.  I just think everyone being treated equally is more important.
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galaxie

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Re: Women and Mustachianism (Take 2)
« Reply #160 on: December 12, 2013, 10:11:54 AM »
The day someone can rush out early because their pet needs to go to the vet

I did this yesterday.  Worked from home all day to make sure she was all right.  (She'll be fine.)

I think people's perspectives on this are going to be heavily colored by their own child-having plans and experiences with employer attitudes.  At my job, folks have a very flexible schedule "as long as you get your work done."  So all this resentment against parents leaving early to pick their kids up... what?  I leave early because it's sunny on a Friday. 

Nobody gripes about how mortgage interest deductions are unfair and there needs to be an equivalent tax credit for people who don't make the choice to own a house.  People understand that the government for some reason wants people to own houses.  Paid parental leave is a similar issue.  If the government wants to encourage people to have kids, they can make it easier by mandating paid parental leave, or providing free day care/preschool, or any number of other policies.  If the government wants to encourage people to take time off work in general, that's a different discussion.  I don't want to be That Person, but does anybody smell a straw man up in here?

brewer12345

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Re: Women and Mustachianism (Take 2)
« Reply #161 on: December 12, 2013, 12:02:41 PM »
Parenting is all well and good, but it should not be privileged over every other life choice.  When I hear that parenting should be accommodated at the office even more than it is now - parents leaving early for sick kids, practices, maternity leave and breastfeeding while the rest of us pick up the slack because it's not worth it to hire someone in their place for 6 months to 1 year, it's really frustrating.  And yes, it IS disruptive to the workplace.  It leaves everyone else doing 150% when they were already at full capacity.  Then the moms come back and complain that they don't get to see their kid enough - you should plan for that and not burden the rest of us!  Parents already get soooo many perks and privileges that they don't even see.  The day someone can rush out early because their pet needs to go to the vet (just using sickness as an equalizer) with the same understanding and social approval as the parent picking up their sick kid from school, then we are all treated equally as humans.   Until that day I will be treated as a potential mother in the workplace, not as a worker.

Sorry for writing a novel, parenting while work is important.  I just think everyone being treated equally is more important.

So you think the next generation will just appear, educated, free of disease, and ready to be a productive member of society?  You childless types get the benefit of all that, remember?
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Jamesqf

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Re: Women and Mustachianism (Take 2)
« Reply #162 on: December 12, 2013, 12:12:18 PM »
n will just appear, educated, free of disease, and ready to be a productive member of society?  You childless types get the benefit of all that, remember?

Ummm...  What benefits are these, exactly?  Especially when carried to excess, where birth rate exceeds death rate.  They're producing my competitors: for jobs, housing, resources, living space...

brewer12345

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Re: Women and Mustachianism (Take 2)
« Reply #163 on: December 12, 2013, 12:26:11 PM »
n will just appear, educated, free of disease, and ready to be a productive member of society?  You childless types get the benefit of all that, remember?

Ummm...  What benefits are these, exactly?  Especially when carried to excess, where birth rate exceeds death rate.  They're producing my competitors: for jobs, housing, resources, living space...

Like it or not, our economy has a strong element of Ponzi scheme.  Without the next generation to pay taxes, wipe our asses (nursing homes), do physical and other labor, and pay our debts you would be looking at a nuclear winter-type economy.
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Jamesqf

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Re: Women and Mustachianism (Take 2)
« Reply #164 on: December 12, 2013, 02:26:09 PM »
Like it or not, our economy has a strong element of Ponzi scheme.  Without the next generation to pay taxes, wipe our asses (nursing homes), do physical and other labor, and pay our debts you would be looking at a nuclear winter-type economy.

Err...  Was it you who was complaining, in another thread, about robots taking all the ower-skill jobs and so creating a class of permanently unemployed?

Indeed, the whole concept of early retirement strongly suggests that there's not a real shortage of labor.  And as I personally hope & plan to be doing some sort of productive work long after even 'normal' retirement age, it's not an argument that really resonates with me.

Roses

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Re: Women and Mustachianism (Take 2)
« Reply #165 on: December 12, 2013, 03:02:15 PM »
Ay-ay-ay.... Ok, Smallife:  Here's the thing.  We would all love to get time off for the things you mentioned.  Men and women, parents and non-parents are all candidates for having pets that need to go to the vet, we all could be writers in need of a year sebatical, we all could be interested in travel or going back to school, or any number of activities that would require time off work, flexible schedules, understanding bosses, etc.  In some companies those things are allowed and in some not.  I feel like a dummy for stating the obvious here but in those areas men, women, parents, non-parents have the same potential needs.  What's the ONE thing that can't be delegated to a man, or a non-parent?  Answer: getting pregnant, giving birth, breastfeeding, waking up in the middle of the night to pop a boob in a kid's mouth.  And that just happens to be ONE thing that humanity can't really do without.  I don't mean because we need population growth - we don't.  But we also can't just stop having kids all together, can we?  I'm not sure it's even worth arguing about.  It's just BI-freaking-OLOGY :)  And no, I'm not a slave to my animal urges.  I just have one kid and am strongly considering adoption.

And your claim that parents are already accommodated enough and the poor suckers who are stuck at work have to pick up the slack?!?!  Seriously, I'm trying to keep it together!  I remember when my bosses would have endless lunch meetings about nothing in particular and the rest of us had to stay late to meet deadlines (yes, parents and non-parents).  If you think parents have it good at work, it's really because you haven't been one.  Parenting is not only not accommodated at work in the US, it is hindered.  Nobody is saying they should have an advantage for being parents, just that policies should be in place to make it a little more even - it's not even close now, in the country as a whole.  Your argument is sort of like saying that a handicapped person shouldn't get to park in the spot closest to the door.  I mean it's his fault if he chose to go skiing and broke his legs!  Or maybe it's ok just for the person who was born handicapped.  Should they not get 'special' treatment to compensate for something more difficult?

How come all the other developed and progressive countries in the world have policies to accommodate parents?  Are they doing it wrong?  Why don't they complain about the unfairness of it all?  I'm not saying pity the parents.  Actually, I think parents are very lucky people.  What I am saying - and what this whole thing was all about - is that if you want women to be able to close the gap at work you have to make it feasible to have a career and have kids.  Otherwise there will always be an income gap, always be less women in certain industries, and always women in lower-level positions.  And if you want men to have the choice to stay home with their kids, what better way than making sure their spouses have the potential to earn as much money as them - so it's not all on their shoulders?  That's all I'm saying.  If we don't care about those things I guess we can just say it's the price of having kids.  I suppose you think that's 'fair' since having kids is a choice.  So be it. 

Roses

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Re: Women and Mustachianism (Take 2)
« Reply #166 on: December 12, 2013, 03:12:14 PM »
Like it or not, our economy has a strong element of Ponzi scheme.  Without the next generation to pay taxes, wipe our asses (nursing homes), do physical and other labor, and pay our debts you would be looking at a nuclear winter-type economy.

Err...  Was it you who was complaining, in another thread, about robots taking all the ower-skill jobs and so creating a class of permanently unemployed?

Indeed, the whole concept of early retirement strongly suggests that there's not a real shortage of labor.  And as I personally hope & plan to be doing some sort of productive work long after even 'normal' retirement age, it's not an argument that really resonates with me.

How about the world you live in?  Well-cared for kids are more likely to grow up and cure cancer or other diseases - which unfortunately everyone is susceptible to.  They might make scientific discoveries to make your life easier, maybe they'll find a way to keep the ocean from swallowing us up.  Does that not impact your life?  What about the kids who don't have those advantages?  The ones who may grow up to rob you or shoot you?  The ones who will drain the system when they need to be jailed or rehabilitated at tax-payers expense (I hate to use such crass examples but it seems the money argument is strongest).  It's ridiculous to say that just because you're not a parent you don't care about parenting.  As if you were somehow immune to the world around you, not sparing any thought regarding kids or the future.  Just because other people are doing the parenting doesn't mean it doesn't concern you!

Albert

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Re: Women and Mustachianism (Take 2)
« Reply #167 on: December 12, 2013, 04:02:19 PM »
I think those of us who have chosen (or are unable to) have children have a duty to be within reason accommodating to those who are engaged in producing and bringing up the next generation.

As for oh so awful disruption to workplace, I call bullshit on that. In my country (and company) 6 months of maternity leave is standard and the sky is not falling over.

brewer12345

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Re: Women and Mustachianism (Take 2)
« Reply #168 on: December 12, 2013, 04:24:31 PM »
Like it or not, our economy has a strong element of Ponzi scheme.  Without the next generation to pay taxes, wipe our asses (nursing homes), do physical and other labor, and pay our debts you would be looking at a nuclear winter-type economy.

Err...  Was it you who was complaining, in another thread, about robots taking all the ower-skill jobs and so creating a class of permanently unemployed?

Indeed, the whole concept of early retirement strongly suggests that there's not a real shortage of labor.  And as I personally hope & plan to be doing some sort of productive work long after even 'normal' retirement age, it's not an argument that really resonates with me.

Nope, it wasn't me.  In fact, as a member of the upper class I look forward to the day when I can hire some poor schlub to do any damn thing I please for peanuts.  (kidding, of course)

I think you are very optimistic about your ability to continue being able bodied to an advanced age.  Yes, you will in all likelihood need someone to wipe your butt/shovel your snow/move heavy things.
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Jamesqf

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Re: Women and Mustachianism (Take 2)
« Reply #169 on: December 12, 2013, 07:17:18 PM »
How about the world you live in?  Well-cared for kids are more likely to grow up and cure cancer or other diseases - which unfortunately everyone is susceptible to.  They might make scientific discoveries to make your life easier, maybe they'll find a way to keep the ocean from swallowing us up.  Does that not impact your life?  What about the kids who don't have those advantages?  The ones who may grow up to rob you or shoot you?  The ones who will drain the system when they need to be jailed or rehabilitated at tax-payers expense (I hate to use such crass examples but it seems the money argument is strongest).

First, I have yet to see that parenting makes all that much difference.  No few of us have come from non-nice childhoods to become productive.  And on the other side, many kids raised in advantageous circumstances turn out to be spoiled brats, for instance this example from the current news: http://newsfeed.time.com/2013/12/12/the-affluenza-defense-judge-rules-rich-kids-rich-kid-ness-makes-him-not-liable-for-deadly-drunk-driving-accident/

Second, why do we need lots more* kids, some fraction of whom might hypothetically grow up to cure cancer (or whatever)?  The current generation(s) of researchers seem to be doing pretty well so far.  (And isn't just as reasonable to suppose that the young genius researcher who might otherwise discover the cure in a couple of years instead has her career derailed because she takes a decade off to raise kids, thanks to a generous family leave policy?)

Again, it seems illogical to complain about needing to have more kids to fill jobs, when so many of the current generation can't find jobs now.


*That is, above replacement rate.  In a badly overpopulated world, why should we make it easier to have kids?

brewer12345

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Re: Women and Mustachianism (Take 2)
« Reply #170 on: December 12, 2013, 07:40:02 PM »
First, I have yet to see that parenting makes all that much difference. 

Then you lead a sheltered/naÔve/self-absorbed life.  Just because you beat the odds and became (you suggest) not a fuck up, does not mean that is what happens to the great majority of kids without a decent home life.
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Roses

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Re: Women and Mustachianism (Take 2)
« Reply #171 on: December 12, 2013, 10:18:52 PM »
How about the world you live in?  Well-cared for kids are more likely to grow up and cure cancer or other diseases - which unfortunately everyone is susceptible to.  They might make scientific discoveries to make your life easier, maybe they'll find a way to keep the ocean from swallowing us up.  Does that not impact your life?  What about the kids who don't have those advantages?  The ones who may grow up to rob you or shoot you?  The ones who will drain the system when they need to be jailed or rehabilitated at tax-payers expense (I hate to use such crass examples but it seems the money argument is strongest).

First, I have yet to see that parenting makes all that much difference.  No few of us have come from non-nice childhoods to become productive.  And on the other side, many kids raised in advantageous circumstances turn out to be spoiled brats, for instance this example from the current news: http://newsfeed.time.com/2013/12/12/the-affluenza-defense-judge-rules-rich-kids-rich-kid-ness-makes-him-not-liable-for-deadly-drunk-driving-accident/
 

Yes, those kids grow up to be total brats.  But donít for a moment confuse an engaged parent who cares for their kids with one who is a wealthy consumer buying their kids whatever they want whenever they want, setting them in front of the tube for hours on end, paying top dollar for elite preschools, 24-hour nannies, etc, etc.  Thatís an entirely different scenario and not at all what I was talking about.  So letís not pretend they are the same thing.  I for one am glad that I grew up Ďpoorí, so is my husband.  Weíre always trying to figure out how to replicate that experience with our son even though weíre not actually poor.

Second, why do we need lots more* kids, some fraction of whom might hypothetically grow up to cure cancer (or whatever)? The current generation(s) of researchers seem to be doing pretty well so far. (And isn't just as reasonable to suppose that the young genius researcher who might otherwise discover the cure in a couple of years instead has her career derailed because she takes a decade off to raise kids, thanks to a generous family leave policy?)

Again, it seems illogical to complain about needing to have more kids to fill jobs, when so many of the current generation can't find jobs now.
 

So this generation thatís doing so well, theyíre not going to die off at some point?  And who said anything about lots more kids?

Is the person who took a decade off to raise kids just dried up when he/she goes back to work?  No more left in that Ďmommy brainí?  My whole point was that a career shouldn't be derailed but just put on hold. 

*That is, above replacement rate.  In a badly overpopulated world, why should we make it easier to have kids?

People are going to keep having kids, period.  We're not talking about a country where people are starving and reproduction rates skyrocket (also has everything to do with financial stability).  So itís not about making it easier to have kids.  Itís about making it easier for those who do have kids to keep working if they want to, when they want to.  What are you going to do to figure out which kid is part of the replacement rate and which one is above that?  All the third kids in a family?  The last couple to have a child in a particular neighborhood?  The argument just doesnít make sense.  What the current system does is punish people who want to have children and continue to work. 

Roses

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Re: Women and Mustachianism (Take 2)
« Reply #172 on: December 13, 2013, 10:04:56 AM »
This is very timely, and interesting.  Not perfect but a start.  Check out all the benefits listed.... for everyone:

http://thinkprogress.org/economy/2013/12/12/3053911/family-act-benefits/

Jamesqf

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Re: Women and Mustachianism (Take 2)
« Reply #173 on: December 13, 2013, 01:26:23 PM »
So this generation that’s doing so well, they’re not going to die off at some point?

Sure, but that's way overshooting the point I was trying to make against the idea that you have to have kids to grow up to do these things, which implies that the reason current generations haven't done it is that we're all incapable, not that it's an inherently complex problem that takes lots of work.

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And who said anything about lots more kids?

I did :-)  Again, I'm trying to get past the straw man idea of no kids at all.

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Is the person who took a decade off to raise kids just dried up when he/she goes back to work?  No more left in that ‘mommy brain’?  My whole point was that a career shouldn't be derailed but just put on hold.

Probably, because that's what usually seems to happen.  Take a decade or so off from any scientific field, and at best you have years of catching up to do.

*That is, above replacement rate.  In a badly overpopulated world, why should we make it easier to have kids?

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What the current system does is punish people who want to have children and continue to work.

I don't quite see that, since the argument seems to be for giving them lots of paid time off to have kids.