The experiment that turned popular gender theory on its head

NationalPost.com – Full Comment – Overwhelmingly, disinterested research confirms what anyone with common sense can see: Men and women are innately different in traits and drives
August 16, 2017.   Barbara Kay

Google is a for-profit enterprise. It’s their right to pander to trendy theories in their hiring and training policies. It’s also their right to fire employees who call them out for doing so. I only wish Google had had the integrity to attribute James Damore’s termination to “insubordination,” rather than implying that his evidence-based statements regarding “gender stereotypes” are false.

I don’t think the mucky-mucks at Google really believe the gender disparity in their ranks is due to sexism. Corporations have no soul. I think they’re going with the ideological flow rather than enduring the public hassle of bucking it for no material reward. If tomorrow the Flat Earth Society achieved prominence in progressive circles, they’d likely throw a round-earth employee dissident under the bus in exchange for social peace.

Overwhelmingly, disinterested research confirms what anyone with common sense can see: Men and women are innately different in traits and drives, and their respective career choices are therefore guided by those differences (in general, women prefer “people” professions, men like “systems”). Ideologues who believe “social construction” alone (rather than a combination of biology and culture) is the reason for mostly-female nurses and mostly male war-game obsessives, are the gender equivalents of Flat Earthers, and will eventually be mocked as such.

Overwhelmingly, disinterested research confirms what anyone with common sense can see

In 2008, Norway was chosen as the top country in the world for gender equality by the World Economic Forum. And yet, in what is known as the “Norwegian gender equality paradox,” gender-segregated labour markets persist in gender equality-oriented welfare states. Even though girls do better across the board in school, and the number of female doctors and lawyers has increased, the number of women opting for Google-type engineering careers has remained low. Notwithstanding more equality in opportunity, choice, pay and work/life balance support, women have resisted entering certain traditionally male-dominated professions, and men have resisted entering certain traditionally female-dominated ones.

Nobody in government has suggested discrimination or lack of opportunity is a factor. And strenuous efforts to recruit men to nursing and women to engineering have been made. Yet lo! The gender breakdown in certain occupations remains stubbornly unchanged. Policy-makers raised on the kinds of “social construction” gender-gap theories that govern Google’s diversity policies must be flummoxed.

But in Norway, something happened in 2011 that removed the mental blinkers. It may have contributed to the Nordic Council of Ministers’ (a regional inter-governmental co-operation consisting of Norway, Sweden, Finland, Denmark, and Iceland) decision to defund the NIKK Nordic Gender Institute, the allegedly scientific greenhouse where social and educational gender policies were seeded and nurtured, making the Nordic countries the most “gender sensitive” societies in the world.

Yet lo! The gender breakdown in certain occupations remains stubbornly unchanged

The “something” that shook their world? A 2011 television documentarybroadcast by Norwegian State Television. Made by popular satirical comedian Harald Elia (who also holds a degree in social sciences), “Hjernevask—Norwegian for “Brainwashing” exposed the unscientific character of the NIKK and its research.

Hjernevask is a persuasive and entertaining documentary. Anyone interested in the gender issue should view it.

Elia’s method was simplicity itself. With his camera team he visited NIKK researchers (two, a man and a woman, are featured) and recorded their answers to his innocent, but pointed questions about the gender paradox. They made assertions about the identical nature of male and female brains, explaining women’s stereotypical career choices by social construction alone, but offering no proofs for this conclusion. Elia then took their taped statements, and played them back to prominent university-based researchers in England and the U.S. These scholars—amused, bemused and incredulous in turn—responded with rebuttals that included evidence-based studies for biologically inherent difference. Elia then took those responses back to the NIKK people for comment. 

Isn’t science science?

Their discomfort is palpable. But they stonewall, dismissing the research of giants in the field out of hand (“weak studies”). One says it is the role of social science to “challenge” biological thinking. Elia is taken aback. Isn’t science science? Finally he asks, “How do you know there are no (biological differences between the sexes)?” The stunning answer from one: “My hypothesis is that there are none.” Equally damning from the other: “I have what you would call a theoretical basis.”

When Norwegian viewers saw their gender emperors revealed in all their unscientific nakedness by this impudent “boy,” many shamed the powers that be, which presumably contributed to the council’s decision to defund what was clearly an ideological house of card. (Even though NIKK managed to resurface, housed in the Swedish Secretariat for Gender Research as the Nordic Information for Gender Knowledge, it has lost its wonted halo.)

Gender warriors, please don’t shoot the messenger. Take the Hjernevask challenge and watch the documentary. If, after watching it, you still think social construction and discrimination account for the gender gap at Google, well, my advice is to not take ocean cruises lest you fall off the side of the world. 

National Post

http://nationalpost.com/opinion/barbara-kay-4/wcm/2e410abb-7754-4e4d-89cb-a16d271223db

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