Quickies

Skepchick Quickies 11.16

Amanda

Amanda is a science grad student in Boston whose favorite pastimes are having friendly debates and running amok.

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18 Comments

  1. @Glow-Orb: I’m going with guy problem for the most part. This type of situation always makes me wonder why, given the statistics for women in business management positions and government leadership as well as the blatant misogyny in the popular media, so many people feel Western Europe is much more enlightened than the US. And perhaps this is more of a problem in certain countries in Europe where these types of attitudes are more entrenched. I really can’t see this happening in Sweden or Denmark for example.

  2. @James Fox: Lies, damn lies and statistics. Whatever comparison you want to make, you pick the Western European countries with the best stats in whatever area you want, and then argue “In Western Europe we see that (site stats for Denmark and Norway)”. The reason for this of course is that no American knows there are separate countries in Europe, so you have to use the collective Western Europe for them to understand the comparison… ;)

  3. @Bjornar: There’s that, as well as the monolithic notion in Europe that the US consists of New York, Disney World, Mississippi, Texas and LA with corn fields and mountains in the middle. ;-) In the stats I read I recall that in the US women were better represented at all management levels in the corporate world than any country in Europe. Of course there was a significant difference between countries, but I recall being surprised at how low the percentage of women in business leadership positions was in France and Germany where I assumed it would be higher.

  4. re. Science cheeleaders. So, where was all the boobies and bums? Cheerleading is almost solely about boobies and bums and they didn’t show hardly any boobies and bums!

    Seriously though, I’m with @Gabrielbrawley. Way, way inadequate.

  5. I was disappointed with the fake doctors article. 2 of them are *real* doctors.

    Dr Nick, of course, has a real medical degree and is board-certified, even if he is incompetent.

    And Dr. J is a brilliant experimental physicist, specializing in General Relativity. He discovered how to negate gravity and furthermore put it to practical application. Definitely Nobel-caliber research. And I say this as a Celtic fan.

  6. I live in Italy, and I don’t support our PM in any way, shape or form. The Newsweek article is pretty good, sufficiently accurate, and downright embarassing.
    Now, obviously Italy is not the only country where women are not really appreciated unless they are good-looking — the companion story about Anna Chapman, the Russian spy, who is becoming a symbol of Russian nationalism, says a lot about this.
    But that’s evidently neither here nor there.
    I’d like to consider what has changed in the past, say, 40-50 years. Italy has moved forward in terms of equal rights for women, and generally in the direction of non-religion.
    National referenda gave us divorce and abortion rights in the late 1970’s and early 1980’s — before that, it was “Divorce, Italian style” and home-made abortions with a high rate of deaths.
    In both cases the Vatican did all it could to cajole Catholic voteers, but did not succeed — many voted with left-wing, non-religious people.
    Women are highly under-represented in all kinds of activities.
    BTW, I found it funny that to show some “Italian women” who are not bimbos, Newsweek chose Sonja Gandhi, Sophia Loren and Carla Bruni. Gandhi is now Indian and Bruni is French, and at the same time both Bruni and Loren have had a long and distinguished career ar “bimbos”…
    But they exist — Milan’s major is a woman, the head of the Italian federation of corporations is a woman — and unlike some of Berlusconi’s female ministers, they got there on merit alone. (There are even football clubs’ presidents who are women).
    This was sort of unthinkable a couple of decades ago.
    What’s probably the worst about the current situation — but it’s more of a political question, than a sexist one — is that our PM owns almost half the Italian media, and is institutionally in charge of almost the remaining half. And this means that his “world outlook” shapes everything. In the US, as well as in other Western countries, there are well-defined laws to prevent this kind of things, and the judiciary takes the Constitution rather seriously.
    Here, for several years now, there is an ongoing discussion, with several changes already implemented, to modify our Constitution in order to make it easier for the politicians to act outside of “external” controls — in other words, once they get elected, they only respond to “the people”, and do as they please. We are not quite there yet, but there is still hope… (Think of “All the King’s Men”)

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