Miscellanea

A woman writer concludes that having a woman’s name may handicap her, even though it shouldn’t.
She also links to this post by a blogger who says he doesn’t like books by female authors because they’re by female author. He a valid observation (making stereotypes is part of how our brain works) and makes the jump to stereotypes therefore being useful. Except then he proceeds to cite such stereotypes as “blondes are ditzy” and “hispanics are all illegal aliens” and Asians are all incredible musicians, and that while this sort of thing isn’t 100 percent correct, they’re still useful (he seems to fudge between claiming there’s some truth behind them and claiming people have just been brainwashed by the media, so it’s not entirely clear what he’s saying).
•Speaking of stereotypes, here’s Paleofuture looking at the origins of the Women are Bad Drivers stereotype and how that stereotype plays out in an episode of The Jetsons. The blog (which I highly recommend) has been reviewing The Jetsons episode by episode. Here’s the explanation for why he thinks it’s worth reviewing—basically that it took a ton of assorted ideas about the future and injected them into mainstream pop culture. Remember, eep op ork ah ah means Meet Me Tonight.
More on stereotypes and science.
•LGM responds to a post in The Atlantic arguing that dress codes for girls are a good thing.
•A reporter discovers Teavana’s sample teas taste better in the store because they put in much more tea than recommended on the bag (which is to say, the per-cup price will work out higher than customers may assume). Much as I love tea stores, I’ve been to this one and they’re way too pricey for my blood (I can get good tea cheaper online, and there are local stores that offer good quality tea at comparable prices).
•A New Yorker article argues that raising the minimum wage won’t boost unemployment or put companies out of business. And that the majority of workers are adults, not teenagers (one of the staple myths of conservatives is that the minimum wage is reserved for teens working fast-food jobs and the like so they don’t really need more money). Echidne points out that the male/female wage gap is not based completely on women’s different life choices (studies have shown that even if you pick single people working the same amount of hours, men come out better).
•Time Warner tells a customer that even if his service rep promised a bigger discount than he actually gets, he’s still getting some amount as a discount, so what’s the problem?
•Slacktivist reports on Kevin Swanson’s claim that birth control leaves women with tiny aborted fetuses in their wombs (according to one of the comments, this is a common belief in the Christian Quiverfull movement). He also touches on James Dobson’s equally (though less dramatically) bullshit claim that a new law will make it illegal to give people over 70 heart stents. What leaps out at me with the latter is how carefully Dobson hedges—he hasn’t had this confirmed but “that’s the kind of thing that is coming” so even if it’s not true, something like it is probably true, so there you are Obama, death panels, evil!
•Good news: An initial court decision on covering birth control with insurance says that a)corporations have no religion (they don’t engage in any religious activity) and their owners’ faith is irrelevant (the point of creating a corporation is to separate it legally from its owners).

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Filed under economics, Politics, Undead sexist cliches

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