Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Bits and Pieces - August 16, 2011

The latest in the Murdoch scandal: a four-year-old letter by Clive Goodman, formerly royal correspondent for now-defunct News of the World, indicates that higher-ups at News International were fully aware of the phone hacking. And investigation of whether NI hacked phones in the US continues.

More infrastructure fail. But hey! Having clean water piped into your house is an unwarranted government intrusion, right?

Does your ketchup come from China?

Washington really is disconnected from the rest of us.

I've been disturbed lately at how much rhetoric reminds me of the bad old sexist days of the sixties and before. Part of the reason is that the rightwing is obsessed with sexual issues as a way to keep women down (nicely commented upon by Molly Ivors)

That makes it easier to blame women in pieces like this. I saw something along these lines yesterday and almost posted on it. I haven't had time to read the report itself. The reasoning in the popular articles, and perhaps the report, is that women act this way, so they are making choices (or are driven by hormones? That's a nice old trope.) to avoid science and technology. Silly women! We certainly can't do anything about their choices! And they have cooties, also, too.

The article I've linked at least considers that men may have something to do with this too. I recognize that data is not the plural of anecdote, but my experience is that the quickest way to end the possibility of romance, long before one gets to that stage, is to talk about even the light side of your lab work. Some younger men seem to be more tolerant of such aberrations, but I wouldn't be surprised if younger women's experiences had some points of similarity with mine.

Update: Getting a little closer to the report, but not all the way there. Here's a quote the popular versions leave out:
"Gender scripts discourage women from appearing intelligent in masculine domains, like STEM," Park says, "and in fact, studies show that women who deviate from traditional gender norms, such as succeeding in male-typed jobs, experience backlash for violating societal expectations. On the other hand, men in gender-incongruent occupations don't experience the same degree of backlash as women do."
What I said.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

ketchup from China!!!! Hu nu?