President Obama has repeatedly expressed his concern about our rising unemployment. The worst losses of jobs are in manufacturing, because building autos has gone overseas, and in construction, because the housing industry has tanked.
When Obama announced his stimulus appropriation, he promised millions of "shovel-ready" jobs. Many people worried about increasing the national debt to create government jobs, but his proposal was attractive because it conjured up visions of crews in hard hats repairing our nation's infrastructure, roads, bridges and electrical grids, and building long-needed highways and schools.
We were told that the purpose of this extraordinary deficit spending in the stimulus package was to jolt the economy. We expected the money to be concentrated on the areas that have suffered the steepest decline during this recession, such as the auto industry and housing construction.
But the feminists then demonstrated the death grip they hold over Obama and the leaders of the Democratic Party. The feminists swung into action with noisy accusations that the stimulus discriminated against women because its jobs would go mostly to men.
The feminists had no sympathy with the fact that men were victims of most of the lost jobs because the majority of manufacturing and construction jobs are men's jobs. The segments of our economy dominated by women -- social services, education, health, childcare and welfare -- have actually gained jobs during this recession.
Nevertheless, the feminists demanded that half the stimulus jobs be given to women. The feminists worked to achieve this result by directing the stimulus funds into the types of jobs where women predominate and by allocating at least a third of the spending in manufacturing and construction industries to training women for those men's jobs.
All the feminist organizations joined in the political clatter. They called for a meeting so they could lecture Obama's economic advisers and hurl their demands that the stimulus package create jobs that women like, such as workplace-comfortable inside jobs with air-conditioned offices and carpeted floors.
As one tactic to intimidate Obama administration officials, the feminists successfully insisted that participants in the meeting be seated in a circle without a table between them -- a format that enabled the feminists to be confrontational. The feminists created their own vocabulary to shout at the men, demanding jobs for "human infrastructure" and "human bridges," which were euphemisms for social service, health-care, childcare and librarian jobs.
The feminists were well aware that Obama's chief economist is Larry Summers, the former president of Harvard University, who had already proven himself a pushover for pushy feminists. His embarrassing confrontation with hysterical feminist faculty over academic math and science professorships proved that there is no way to appease the feminists and that apologizing to them only makes matters worse -- they still demanded their pound of flesh and saw to it that he resign.
After working over the administration representatives assigned to get their orders from the feminists, they moved on to lobby Congress to write their demands into the text of the stimulus bill. They succeeded with the compliance of Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid after face-to-face meetings, and Obama signed the revised stimulus bill.
A member of Pelosi's staff dared to offer the suggestion that "apron ready" could be the female equivalent of the term "shovel ready." The feminists didn't think that was funny.
Unemployment figures show that men are continuing to lose jobs and that women are getting jobs created by the stimulus bill. The Associated Press reported in June that "social programs get bulk of stimulus cash; state 'shovel-ready' jobs take back seat to spending on health care, welfare."
Obama gave two of his economists the task of calculating the gender ratio of jobs to be created by the stimulus legislation. They reported that women had only 20 percent of jobs lost in the recession but would get 42 percent of stimulus-created jobs.
In Georgia, for example, two-thirds of the $3.9 billion stimulus money will go to existing social programs.
Despite the recent welcome Ricci decision by the Supreme Court against egregious reverse discrimination on the basis of race, the feminists can look forward to Sonia Sotomayor joining the high court and ruling that "empathy" requires reverse discrimination for women. After all, when she was on the Second Circuit, she upheld affirmative action in the Ricci case, and her own words (repeated many times) reveal that she believes a woman's view of the law can be better than a man's.
When are the American people going to wake up to the fact that the feminists are not for equal opportunity or fairness? The feminist movement is for reverse discrimination to give jobs to women and make men, husbands and fathers irrelevant as family providers.
Phyllis Schlafly is a national leader of the pro-family movement, a nationally syndicated columnist and author of Feminist Fantasies.
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