Tuesday, January 31, 2017
Heinous sexist culture inside STEM industries exists in Australia (and elsewhere)
Of course it does. Women are being pushed into occuptions where they don't belong and where they don't generally do well.
What's this about "belong"? It's simple aptitude. We have known for a hundred years that women do not perform well on tests of mathemtical ability. And STEM fields have a heavy mathematical requirement. So those who do do well (men) in such fields tend to look down on those who do not (women).
All men (and all women) are NOT equal and ignoring that for the sake of political correctness is always going to create friction. It opposes policy to reality and those who can see the reality will reasonably object.
There is a small minority of females who excel at STEM tasks and it is they alone who should be in such fields. If such women were the only ones is such fields the cause for derision would disappear. Women in such fields would be respected
A PARTICULARLY heinous brand of sexism faced by Australia's most educated woman has been exposed in a damning survey of professional industries including engineering and IT.
Managers in STEM industries (science, technology, engineering and maths) have been revealed to avoid hiring women because they "nag", take on women considering reasons other than their skills and qualifications because they want a "work wife", and prefer men because they can "pee on the run".
The shocking details accompanied by the concerning warning that three quarters of women who work in these areas plan to drop out of their profession within the next five years due to restrictions in career progression.
The claims are included in a submission from industry group Professional Australia to a senate inquiry into gender segregation in the workplace.
The comprehensive submission includes results from a survey undertaken by the professional body, showing that 25.8 per cent of women reported being sexually harassed at work with half taking no action on the matter, and 7 per cent quitting their jobs over it.
Women in the STEM industries reported experiencing bias against women in their male-dominated fields, and described their industry as a "boys club". "Career progression is not always based on merit," one respondent said.
Women reported having to "fight for the pay and respect that men get naturally", and were told to be a "good sport" when on the receiving end of sexist comments.
One employee said women were regularly accused of "nagging" when making reasonable requests of male colleagues, with one recalling being told "you sound like my wife" after requesting overdue information from a male colleague.
"I took over a job on an industrial site from an obviously disliked female employee and on first meeting an operator (was) told `not another f***ing woman, are you here to nag us as well?'" one respondent said.
A female scientist reported opportunities diminished for women in the eyes of male managers once they became more senior. "A lot of scientists like cute student girls," she said. "Once that time period has passed, you are less likely to be offered any roles in anything."
The report also highlighted that women felt sidelined once they had children, with men being considered "more serious about their careers".
One respondent reported being offered a demotion after returning from maternity leave to "help with family flexibility". Another said she was told by a manger if she applied for a job alongside a male of the same age and experience, the male would be selected "as they are less likely to take leave in the future to care for children".
The report showed male engineers earned 24 per cent more than their female colleagues when they worked fulltime, and fulltime male scientists earned 18 per cent more than their female counterparts.
In its submission, Professionals Australia said it hoped shining a light on the issues faced by highly-educated professional women could be addressed.
The group said it wanted to "encourage police-makers and employers to look at ways to tackle gender segregation by looking at the need to address entrenched structural bias in work practices".
"Tackling the issues will be fundamental to providing for the optimal attraction, development and retention of women in the STEM workforce, and to fully realising Australia's productivity potential and innovative capability into the future."
The senate inquiry into gender segregation into the workplace and its impact on women's economic equality is due to report by March this year.
Donald Trump’s election a rejection of identity politics
Donald Trump was, in effect, given permission to win by the progressives despite smashing the orthodox bounds of political and policy behaviour
By senior Australian journalist Paul Kelly
As Donald Trump’s new presidency surges across our politics, creating chaos and uncertainty, there is one element in his victory where most Australian politicians remain in ideological denial — the revolt against identity politics.
Trump, in effect, was given permission to win the election by the US progressive class despite his narcissism, his coarseness and his smashing of the orthodox bounds of political and policy behaviour.
In retrospect, the 2016 US election story is a grand joke — enough voters in Middle America decided to tolerate Trump’s juvenile viciousness because they felt the narcissism of prevailing closed-minded progressive ideology was no longer to be tolerated. In the end, the alternative was worse than Trump. Is this too difficult an idea to grasp?
During the Obama era the US underwent a cultural revolution. Fuelled by social activists on race, sex and gender issues and the decisive swing by younger people to social liberalism as a way of life, the Democratic Party embraced identity politics as a brand. It mirrored the values transformation that swept through many American institutions: the academy, media, arts, entertainment and much of the high income earning elite. But revolutions are only guaranteed to bring counter-revolutions in their wake.
Barack Obama won two presidential elections enshrining identity and minority politics at the heart of his campaign. But Obama is a unique historical figure. What works for him doesn’t work for other Democrats — witness Hillary Clinton. In 2016 minority politics failed to deliver. Its momentum has been checked, with American progressives sunk in an angry valley of rage.
Last year Clinton, after a long and often tortuous journey, embraced not a call to all, but a collection of separate identity groups, a pervasive agenda of political correctness and pledges to end discrimination for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people. This testified to the US Supreme Court decision in favour of same-sex marriage, the injustices visited on African Americans, the voting power of minorities and their decisive capture of the soul of the Democratic Party. The problem for the Democrats is now obvious: managing the Obama legacy without the magic of Obama.
This election, beyond its madness, was about a clash of moral vision. Trump stood for three visions: economic protection against free trade, nationalism against internationalism, and cultural tradition against social liberalism. In Australia there has been immense coverage of Trump’s victory combined with denial of its full meaning. It is a historic failure of progressivism.
In his defining New York Times article of November 18, “The End of Identity Liberalism”, US professor of humanities Mark Lilla said the liberal orthodoxy that society should “celebrate” its differences was splendid as moral pedagogy “but disastrous as a foundation for democratic politics in an ideological age”.
Lilla said: “In recent years American liberalism has slipped into a kind of moral panic about racial, gender and sexual identity that has distorted liberalism’s message and prevented it from becoming a unifying force capable of governing. One of the many lessons of the recent presidential campaign and its repugnant outcome is that the age of identity liberalism must be brought to an end.”
Lilla, no fan of Trump, said Clinton’s “strategic mistake” was slipping into “the rhetoric of diversity, calling out explicitly to African-American, Latino, LGBT and women at every stop”. It became a bigger problem when, having decided to play group politics, she ignored the biggest group: white voters without college degrees. They punted for Trump and who can blame them?
After the result Lilla said American voters were “disaffected with the liberal message”. He said: “Democrats have simply lost the country. They have lost the capacity to speak to the vast middle of America, an America that is, in large part, white, very religious and not highly educated.” He said identity liberalism was about self-expression, not persuasion, and claimed that “it’s narcissistic, it’s isolating, it looks within”.
The superficial lesson of the US election is that identity politics failed at the ballot box. That’s important. But what’s even more important — for the US and Australia — is that identity politics is bad in its essence, bad for nations, bad for societies and bad for peoples. Identity politics is a far bigger issue in the US than Australia but that does not gainsay this reality.
It goes to the flaw in progressive politics — its blindness to consequences of its policies. This is relevant in Australia given the Labor Party is fully pledged to identity politics as a tactic while for the Greens it is core ideology. The pent-up backlash, however, will come in this country probably sooner rather than later.
Trump, personally liberal in many ways, rode the tide of conservative moral revolt. It was wider and deeper than liberals expected because the rising progressive ethos touches virtually every aspect of US life. Progressives misjudged partly because they felt Trump condemned himself as a bigot, sexist and anti-Muslim extremist.
The genius of Trump’s “make America great again” slogan was that it resonated at multiple levels — with people who saw their jobs and incomes were being eroded along with something even bigger: they felt the values of their America were being stolen, that they were losing their country.
Lilla joins that other brilliant American academic, Jonathan Haidt, professor of ethical leadership at New York University and author of The Righteous Mind, whose speeches over the past year are a tour de force in documenting and exposing the crisis in the US university system caused by identity politics.
These speeches are reinforced by Haidt’s 2015 Atlantic magazine article, “The Coddling of the American Mind”, co-authored with constitutional lawyer Greg Lukianoff, that reveals the destructiveness of identity politics.
The key lies in its cultivation of victimhood and the creation of laws, rules and processes to allow victims to pursue and punish the people who have offended them. This vests victims with a superior moral standing, even social status, with the assumption such processes represent superior public policy and prove the compassion of institutions that embrace these norms.
The argument “I’m offended” is the ultimate card. Once these norms are accepted, it is unbeatable. This thinking is spreading rapidly into Australian institutions and is embraced by authorities who don’t understand the consequences of what they are doing.
Any Australian politician will gain currency by standing for the victim, winning moral acclaim and usually votes. The great examples are rejecting the same-sex plebiscite because it would offend and hurt gays and lesbians, the insistence under section 18C that people have a right to be offended because of racial comments, and the right of LGBTI students to have the school norms redesigned on gender grounds for self-protection. The principle in each case is the same: the norms of the majority must surrender to the demands of the victimised minority.
Once the victim culture prevails, then notions of morality and decency are redefined. As its scope widens any established idea is vulnerable: that male-female gender norms should be respected, that Australia Day should be kept as January 26 or that the British civilisation heritage should be fundamental to the school curriculum.
While Haidt’s analysis is university-based, it is valuable because US universities are the most advanced outreach of identity politics. He argues this transformation weakens the integrity of institutions and damages the precise people it is supposed to protect.
“What has been happening since the 1990s is there’s been a change — the most sacred thing at university is the victim,” Haidt says. “There are six groups of victims traditionally since the 1990s so mostly whenever there are big political blow-ups and controversies they tend to be around race issues, gender issues, or LGBT issues. Those are the big three. There are three other groups that tend to be sacred but there seems to be less controversy around Latinos, Native Americans and the disabled. The last two years have been extraordinary because there’s been a revolution in just two years with a seventh group, now Muslims, in the sacred category. You know you’re in the presence of sacredness when any little thing, any affront or insult, elicits a huge reaction.”
Haidt describes how the process works at American universities: “The transition to a victimhood culture is one characterised by concern with status and sensitivity.” The self-declared victim looks to the new norms for satisfaction. “They bring it to the attention of the authorities,” Haidt says. “If something happens, you don’t deal with it yourself. You report it. You get the president of the university, the dean, some older person, some bureaucratic authority, to bring them in. To punish the person who did this. In such a culture you don’t emphasise your strengths, rather the aggrieved emphasise the repression and their social marginalisation. The only way to gain status is not just to be a victim but to stand up for other victims.”
This is an accurate description of the ethos and operating rules of the Australian Human Rights Commission.
What are the consequences? Haidt says: “Professors are increasingly afraid of students. Everybody’s on the Left but they’re increasingly being hauled up for some charge of racism or sexism. Professors all over the country are pulling videos, pulling material. Undergrads are being exposed to far less provocative material in 2016 than they were even in 2014. Just in the last two years professors all over the country are changing their teaching.”
The origins of this cultural sickness are deep and pervasive. Lilla says: “The fixation on diversity in our schools and in the press has produced a generation of liberals and progressives narcissistically unaware of conditions outside their self-defined groups and indifferent to the task of reaching out to Americans in every walk of life.
“At a very young age our children are being encouraged to talk about their individual identities, even before they have them. By the time they reach college many assume that diversity discourse exhausts political discourse and have shockingly little to say about such perennial questions as class, war, the economy and the common good.
“In large part this is because of high-school curriculums, which anachronistically project the identity politics of today back on to the past, creating a distorted picture of the major forces and individuals that shaped our country.”
Haidt says that children born after 1980 got a message: “Life is dangerous but adults will do everything in their power to protect you from harm.” He’s right. But he misses the sharper political point. For progressives, identity politics and victimhood are a wedge to delegitimise leaders and institutions that sustain any conservative status quo against the radical social changes they want. This has played out in the politics of both the US and Australia.
Identity politics should be seen in its historical context. It is one manifestation of the chaotic yet momentous embrace of populism on both the Left and Right, fanned by social media, the crisis of traditional values and the debasement of the notion of what is a virtuous person. Emotional self-expression, not piety, is the behaviour that is now rewarded.
Haidt says identity politics is tied to the idea of “emotional reasoning” — or, to be crude, the elevation of emotion over reason. Its essence is: “I feel it, therefore it must be true.” Feelings are permitted to guide reality. Lukianoff and Haidt say: “A claim that someone’s words are ‘offensive’ is not just an expression of one’s own subjective feeling of offendedness. It is, rather, a public charge that the speaker has done something objectively wrong. It is a demand that the speaker be punished by some authority for committing an offence.”
Emotional reasoning is now evidence; it is seen as illegitimate for an authority or a government to inflict mental or emotional damage on people who constitute a historically repressed minority; subjective evidence of the hurt is all that is required to make the case. Let’s be clear: emotions and claims of mental damage have become political weapons to be ruthlessly deployed. This is a core tactic of identity politics.
Bill Shorten grasps this and has used it brilliantly. Shorten and most of his frontbench were explicit in their rejection of the same-sex marriage plebiscite: it had to be rejected because of the emotional damage it would do. Shorten said the “No” campaign would be “an emotional torment for gay teenagers” and raised the possibility of suicide. Many mental health clinicians backed him.
These views must be challenged. How healthy was it for the LGBTI community to present itself to the Australian public as such entrenched victims that they were unable to sustain a national vote on the marriage issue? Are such individuals better off having embraced this position? Are they better prepared for future life when, in an imperfect world, they will face inevitable discrimination from time to time?
Moving to the central contradiction in identity politics — as relevant in Australia as it is in America — Lilla said: “It says, on the one hand, you can never understand me because you are not exactly the kind of person I’ve defined myself to be. And on the other hand, you must recognise me and feel for me.”
Rates of mental illness have been increasing rapidly in both the US and Australia among young people. This is a serious issue but it is being exploited in the cause of ideology. As Haidt says, if young people are taught, encouraged and rewarded “to nurture a kind of hypersensitivity” that does not assist their lives. On the contrary, this new moral culture advocated by the progressives results in “an atrophying of the ability to handle small interpersonal matters on one’s own” while at the same time “it creates a society of constant and intense moral conflict”.
Nobody doubts that hurt and offence are genuine and justified across every minority group. That is a fact. But it is not the issue. The issue is the institutional, political and legal response. Haidt argues that the cult of victimhood in law and process “causes a downward spiral of competitive victimhood” and the generation of a “vortex of grievance”. The further tragedy is that victimhood penetrates both sides of the political conflict: men branded as sexist by feminists claim to be victims of reverse sexism.
Progressives have been setting the cultural agenda in Australia just as they have done in the US: on same-sex marriage, LGBTI rights, gender fluidity programs, social and ideological agendas in schools, the campaign against religious freedom, winning more support for affirmative action, radicalising the proposed indigenous referendum, shifting multiculturalism towards the “diversity” side of the spectrum and deploying anti-discrimination law as an instrument of radical social change.
It is futile to think the counter-revolution will not occur. The only issues are its leadership, its rationality and the extent of its conservative or reactionary populism. If Malcolm Turnbull, as Coalition leader, feels this is not his responsibility then the vacuum will be occupied by others.
As the two-generations-long campaign in the West for individual human rights reaches its logical cultural conclusion in identity politics, the results are an increasingly fragmented society, the decline of a shared historical narrative and a distorted moral order that damages us all.
All cultures are not equal
by Jennifer Oriel
Long after the West has defeated Islamic State, the jihadist threat will remain.
For the past 40 years, Western immigration policy has been based on multicultural ideology.
Its consequence is clear: Islamism has become a Western condition. Successive governments have diluted Western values to the point where they are no longer taught in schools. The result is a population unschooled in the genius of our civilisation whose youth cannot understand why it is worth defending.
Multicultural ideology must give way to a renaissance of Western civilisation in which Australian exceptionalism is celebrated and Islamism is sent packing.
Multiculturalism is not merely the acceptance of diverse cultures, or open society. It is the a priori belief that cultural diversity has a net positive effect on the West, coupled with a double standard that excuses lslamic and communist states from embracing it.
Thus, Western nations must open their borders while Islamic and communist states remain closed. The West must accept the myth that all cultures are equal while Islamic and communist states celebrate their unique contribution to world history. Under multicultural ideology, the greatest civilisation of the world, Western civilisation, is held in contempt while theocratic throwbacks and communist barbarism are extolled.
The UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Zeid Ra’ad al- Hussein, regularly frames the West as xenophobic and racist. In a recent speech, he decried xenophobia and religious hatred. But he did not address the Chinese government’s persecution of Christians, or the governing Islamist regime in Gaza, Hamas, for hatred of Jews. Rather, he took aim at the West, saying: “My recent missions to Western Europe and North America have included discussions of increasingly worrying levels of incitement to racial or religious hatred and violence, whether against migrants or racial and religious groups. Discrimination, and the potential for mob violence, is being stoked by political leaders for their personal benefit.”
Western governments should explain why they continue to send taxpayers’ money to the UN when it has become an organisation expressly devoted to defending the interests of Islamist and communist regimes against the free world.
The growing hatred of Western culture goes unremarked by politicians whose populism is firmly rooted in political correctness. No major political party has calculated the cost of multicultural ideology to Western society. Instead, they extol it as a net benefit without tendering empirical evidence. When politicians claim truth without substantive supporting evidence, ideology is at play. It may be that multiculturalism is a net benefit to the West. If so, why has the evidence been withheld? Without it, minor parties can contend that multiculturalism is a net negative for the West and appear credible.
In the absence of empirical proof that multicultural ideology is beneficial, politicians such as Pauline Hanson, Donald Trump, Geert Wilders and Marine Le Pen seek to curb Muslim immigration and deport those who disrespect Western values. Hanson plans to push for a burka ban in the new year. The policy has international precedent as Dutch politicians voted recently to ban the burka in some public places. German Chancellor Angela Merkel also has proposed a burka ban, but it is reasonable to question her motives ahead of the 2017 election. In a state election held in September, Merkel’s party polled below nationalist and anti-Islam party Alternative for Germany. She has driven porous border policy and repeatedly castigated European heads of state who defend their sovereign borders, such as Hungary’s Viktor Orban. Her call for a burka ban is thus viewed by some as blatant political opportunism.
Malcolm Turnbull addressed the issue indirectly by citing poor border controls in Europe as the cause of the problem. However, as with so many issues concerning political Islam in Australia, the question of a burka ban is indivisible from the defence of Western values.
One such value is the universal application of law that requires the equal treatment of all citizens. If Australians are expected to not wear a balaclava in banks, courts or Parliament House, why are some citizens permitted to cover their faces in a burka or niqab? Double standards and preferential treatment of state-anointed minorities is fuelling widespread, and rational, resentment in the West.
Consider retelling the events of the past week to an Anzac just returned from war. We would tell him that a Muslim married to a terrorist recruiter refused to stand in court because she wanted to be judged by Allah. Muslims in Sydney and Melbourne were charged with preparing a terrorist act against Australians. In France, several people were arrested for plotting jihadist attacks. News broke that 1750 foot soldiers of a genocidal Islamic army had entered Europe without resistance from Western armies. As in Australia, many jihadists entered as refugees and lived on taxpayer-funded welfare under a program called multiculturalism.
In the same week, a German politician called Angela Merkel, who ushered Islamists into the West by enforcing open borders, was lauded by a respected magazine called The Economist as “the last leader of stature to defend the West’s values”. Yet men from Islamic countries who allegedly entered Germany under Merkel’s open-border policy were arrested for sexual assault, including the rape and murder of a teenage girl. Asylum-seekers and refugees had assaulted women and children across Europe. Less than a year before, on New Year’s Eve, Merkel’s asylum-seekers had attacked women and girls en masse.
We would tell the Anzac that Britain attempted to acknowledge the negative impact of its undiscriminating approach to immigration. A review recommended a core school curriculum to promote “British laws, history and values” and a proposal that immigrants sign an oath of allegiance to British values. But secularism, private property and Christianity were absent from the principle list and as such, it wasn’t very British at all.
There were few Anzacs left to see what the West has become. I suppose that’s a kind of mercy. We have dishonoured the millions of soldiers who laid down their lives in the 20th century fighting for our freedom and the future of Western civilisation. We should hang our heads in shame for letting the Anzac legacy come to this. We are the descendants of the world’s most enlightened civilisation. It is our turn to fight for its future.
Trump's immigration crackdown is a clear message to the Muslim world - get your own houses in order before you come to ours
By Katie Hopkins
Have you noticed? There has been more outrage from the left over Trump’s so-called Muslim ban, than over terror itself.
More gnashing of gums and loud wailing, more placards decrying the plight of a few tourists and travellers, than over the bodies blown apart by Islamic extremists at Brussels airport in March last year.
So much collective outrage, in fact, I wonder how on earth a ban imposed by 16 countries on Israeli citizens has remained in place for quite so long with such quiet acceptance.
Curious, isn't it? What liberals will and won't accept.
What is also strange that when I speak to Muslims and ask why they feel the need to flee persecution or seek refuge, I am told it is because Islam is suffering and is incredibly divided. Because the tensions between Sunni and Shia are simply overwhelming.
What stumps me is why non-Muslim countries are expected to welcome such a divided religion with open arms. And if we think about the problems facing Syrian, Iran, Somalia and Yemen and the rest in the context of the US president’s inaugural address, why would America want to keep allowing such division to its shores?
Whether Muslims want to acknowledge it or not, extremists commit atrocities in the name of Allah. They do it according to and in observance of their interpretation of their faith.
What has led us to this latest executive order is not only Islamic extremists knifing, shooting, stabbing and exploding peaceful citizens in the West, but also the abject failure of the wider Muslim community to denounce these vile acts.
It is troubling to many that after each terrorist act there is largely silence from the families and communities that raised the terrorists and from the mosques that they frequented. Imams seldom condemn terror. And in their silence, in the void, acceptance, encouragement even, is assumed.
The typical response in Western Europe is a hashtag, a tea light and a leader, saying their people will not be cowed in the face of terror. Except, they no longer speak for us. We are sick of their platitudes.
The response from the US president is far more reassuring: a ban on travellers from seven Muslim countries and a total ban on refugees and asylum seekers from Syria. Finally, a politician taking action.
Some have questioned why Saudi Arabia has been left off the list. They quote statistics: 15 of the terrorists involved in 9/11 came from Saudi Arabia.
When I ask if they would like Saudi added to the list of banned countries, they say no, appalled at the idea of a ban at all. At which point their argument dies on the spot. Doesn't matter if your country has terror or no terror, they don't agree with a ban. The Saudi argument is a distraction.
They lamely argue for more stringent checks to sift out jihadis. I offer the attacks on Western Europe by Islamic extremists as proof that we are not sophisticated enough to work out who is a jihadi and who is not.
In fact, we have allowed those who travelled to Syria to fight for ISIS to return to our country.
And even when we do know who would wish to hurt our people, the jihadis’ right to privacy and freedom trumps our right to safety or life.
In its wild lament, the left has missed the point entirely. Trump is sending out a message. His 90-day ban on seven Muslim countries is in place to achieve one thing and one thing only: Trump wants you to understand America has borders, and from now on it’s going to protect them.
He is going to build a wall with Mexico. He is going to reinforce Homeland Security. He is pouring funds into the US Immigration and Customs Enforcement services.
And thanks to the outrage, the placard-waving protests, the Clinton News Network and the Biased Broadcasting Corporation, you all know about it. So everyone is now clear. Perfect.
All those desperate to get into the country, to get back to work or to their brothers or sisters in America originally from Iran, their daughter who has dual US-Yemeni nationality, or their American-Somali mother based in California — they now have 90 days to reflect.
To think about how lucky they are to have a home in the land of the free. How fortunate they are to live in a country where democracy works and laws are made by the will of the people, not religion.
Trump said, 'We only want to admit those who will support our country and love deeply our people.'
Think of it less as a Muslim ban, and more as an American invitation. If you support America and will put America first, you will be welcome.
If you cannot bring yourself to condemn the actions of those who commit terror in the name of your god, probably best stay in what's left of your home.
Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.
American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of other countries. The only real difference, however, is how much power they have. In America, their power is limited by democracy. To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges. They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did: None. So look to the colleges to see what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way. It would be a dictatorship.
For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and DISSECTING LEFTISM. My Home Pages are here or here or here. Email me (John Ray) here.