Wednesday, June 22, 2005

Lies, damned lies and statistics

I'm out of town but I just had to commandeer my hostess' computer to vent on this news story:

Married men earn more if wives do the chores?

Married men earn more than bachelors so long as their wives stay at home doing the housework, according to a report Wednesday from Britain's Institute for Social and Economic Research (ISER).

Academics Elena Bardasi and Mark Taylor found that a married man whose wife does not go out to work but is primarily responsible for the cooking and cleaning earns about 3 percent more than comparably employed single men.

But that wage premium disappears if wives go out to work themselves or don't do most of the housework.


He said analysis suggests there could be two explanations for the results:

A marriage might allow a husband and wife to focus their activities on tasks to which they are most suited. Traditionally, this would result in the man concentrating on paid work enabling him to increase productivity and in consequence his wages.

There's so much wrong here I don't even know where to start, but I'll just pick one...

Three percent? Excuse me, three percent? You're getting all exercised over THREE FUCKING PERCENT????

Let's do some simple math, people. Say the guy is a hard-charger making 100K a year. If wifey stays home and caters to his manly needs, he can potentially up that to a whopping... 103K. Wow.

Look, in what universe could she NOT go out and get a job making significantly -more- than 3,000? Even if she clerked or taught and made a modest 23K a year, the family UNIT is still up by 20K. So any guy looking to use this study to keep her barefoot in the kitchen should frankly shut his yap.

And "A marriage might allow a husband and wife to focus their activities on tasks to which they are most suited."??? What year was this study commissioned in, 1950?

Where's the study that shows how well women do when they're not married to paleolithic morons?


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