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View Diary: Peasants as far as I can see (169 comments)

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  •  Women in workforce driving down prevailing wage = (7+ / 0-)

    mythology IMHO.

    Women always worked for pay in large numbers  -- in "traditonally" female and usually low-paid jobs e.g. as factory workers, food preparers, cleaners, secretaries, prostitutes, and -- at the top of the scale -- nurses, teachers and social workers.

    There were always a lot of women whose husbands didn't make a family wage, and single women, and widows or divorcees or wives of men disabled for one reason or another, who had family responsibilities, and did they work!

    In a lot of middle class families, sure, a man got a "family wage," out of which he basically paid his wife in room and board and whatever perks he was willing to grant. At the upper end of the scale, he probably also paid a part-time maid to do some of the housework under the wife's supervision.

    In the 70s, women entering the workforce made some inroads in the professions at the lower to mid level, but very little in male bastions like the well-paid construction trades and upper management. The majority stayed in pink collar ghettos.

    Meanwhile, other trends were underway. Minority men -- another exploited group -- also bid for equal opportunity. Immigrants arrived in large numbers, willing to work for less. Companies fought unioinization and broke unions. Jobs were offshored. Leveraged buyouts forced better-meaning companies to take the low road along with the worst.

    "Women took our jobs" is a wrong narrative and moreover potentially feeds the "war againt women."

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