Sunday, September 30, 2012

Todd Akin: Overturning 1963 Equal Pay Act Is 'About Freedom'

That's right: Rep. Todd Akin (R-MO, US Senate candidate), opposing Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-MO), suggested Thursday at a town hall meeting that nearly fifty years of settled law requiring equal pay for equal work by women was an assault on the employers' freedom. As good as his word, Akin is on record as having voted against the Lily Ledbetter Fair Pay Act.

Note this exchange:
Rep. Todd Akin
AUDIENCE MEMBER: You voted against the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act. Why do you think it is okay for a woman to be paid less for doing the same work as a man?

AKIN: Well, first of all, the premise of your question is that I'm making that particular distinction. I believe in free enterprise. I don't think the government should be telling people what you pay and what you don't pay. I think it's about freedom. If someone [wants] to hire somebody and they agree on a salary, that's fine, however it wants to work. So, the government sticking its nose into all kinds of things has gotten us into huge trouble.
In other news, Akin proposed once again legalizing slavery and withholding the franchise from women and racial minorities. OK, no, he didn't say that. Aloud. That's a pernicious slander. For now. Wait a week...

But here's something that is true: Akin's conservative consultant Kellyanne Conway praised Akin by comparing him to David Koresh... yes, that David Koresh, of the Waco compound in 1993. Now there's an exemplar of conservative leadership: everyone under Koresh's command was killed, but before he killed them in a fire, Koresh was... yes... banging girls who had not reached the age of consent. Is Conway saying we need more like David Koresh?

I should be grateful for Akin's efforts in McCaskill's behalf. But his whole candidacy frightens me. The GOP is not going away, despite my fondest dreams. But it IS changing. Election after election, Republicans grow ever more morally extreme, further from the American center and further from sanity. If the GOP will continue to back a candidate who has gone off the deep end as far as Akin, how far will they ultimately go? and... with what consequences for women and racial minorities?


  1. Jesus the man gets worse. I hope the people of Missouri aren't so mad as to elect him

  2. Make it like in Greece: On the fast slope of the internal devaluation, we broke the collective bargaining agreements and replaced them with individual employment contracts!!

    One Day on Earth: Women at Work

  3. jams, as of 8/25, McCaskill had a 9‑point lead. I don't have newer numbers, but I think it's looking pretty good for her. Remember, Akin was the "legitimate rape" guy; that didn't help him among women!

  4. Enfant, breaking labor contracts was probably a major goal for all the drastic governmental changes in the first place. The unions in the US are pretty much powerless already, but the day they try to illegalize them is the day I take to the streets. Labor deserves its voice in all bargains, and it shall have it... by any means necessary.

  5. BTW, Enfant... great video. Do you think they mean it? In the US, there's a lot of lip service paid to women's equality, even by the Republicans, but when push comes to shove, a lot of conservative men want to see women controlled as if they were in, say, Saudi Arabia. It's a constant battle.

  6. Enfant, one more thought... remember that in the US, women did not obtain the right to vote until 1920. Women were the last US citizens to vote; male African Americans won the right in 1868. The anti-woman feeling here is persistent and difficult to overcome. I know of no other modern Western democracy in which women are more discriminated against than in the US.

  7. I think in 1920 women's suffrage was generalised everywhere in the USA.
    First was Wyoming Territory in 1869 and then Utah Territory in 1870.

    Please have a look at what was happening during the 18th century.
    Timeline of women's suffrage:

    I am preparing a post on the "suffragettes", how they got arrested etc..

  8. "I think in 1920 women's suffrage was generalised everywhere in the USA." - Enfant

    Enfant, you are correct. The 19th Amendment to the US Constitution was proposed in 1919 and the amendment ratified in 1920. My father was born in 1920; that's how recent universal women's suffrage is for Americans.

    I look forward to your post on the suffragettes. They were a courageous lot! Ironically, the earliest mention of American women's suffrage I am personally aware of (there may be earlier ones) is by Abigail Adams, wife of John Adams, the 2nd president: she was quite an advocate in general for women's participation in the business of the republic. Of course no women sat in the Constitutional Convention, but she was a strong influence on John, as evidenced in their correspondence.

  9. Let me clarify: I am ashamed of the US for being so late in establishing universal women's suffrage. We have always had too many like Todd Akin here, determined to grasp and hold male privilege to the very last. Sometimes it's the religious fundamentalists. Sometimes it's more traditional conservatives. Either way, their outlook is simply wrong, and the discussion should be closed. But Akin cannot resist one more word...

  10. Greece established the universal women's suffrage only in 1952
    -Hungary in 1953
    -Cyprus in 1960
    -Australia and Monaco in 1962
    -Andorra in 1970
    -Switzerland in 1971
    -Portugal in 1974
    -Liechtenstein in 1984
    Don't you consider "us" as western countries?

  11. Of course, Enfant. I apologize. I should have researched the question before I posted. This seems to be my day to put my foot in my mouth! If it makes any difference, I mistakenly assumed that Greece and the seven other countries you named had instituted women's suffrage BEFORE the US... at least my thinking, however mistaken, was not uncomplimentary of Greece or the other nations! :)

  12. As for "Western country," Greece took its place at the center of Western philosophical and scientific thinking more than two millennia ago, when America hadn't even been imagined by Europeans. Maybe "US" stands for "upstart". :)

  13. But what does "upstart" sand for?

  14. Ancient immortal spirit ...
    Now Greece is tumbling in the mire..

  15. "But what does "upstart" stand for?
    "new-rich"?" - Enfant

    Yes, more or less. As large, powerful, wealthy nations go, the US is relatively new, only a couple of centuries old. And many Americans are very certain they have the answers for everything. New-rich and arrogant, that's the US (hence the upstart)!

  16. OK. I got it!

    (except for the pre-Colombian Indians)



• Click here to view existing comments.
• Or enter your new rhyme or reason
in the new comment box here.
• Or click the first Reply link below an existing
comment or reply and type in the
new reply box provided.
• Scrolling manually up and down the page
is also OK.

Static Pages (About, Quotes, etc.)

No Police Like H•lmes