Sunday, April 1, 2018

NJ’s Discriminatory ‘Pay Equity’ Bill Threatens Freedom and Competence

With a new Democrat governor, New Jersey’s Progressives are racing ahead to roll back economic freedom in the state. As Susan K. Livio reports for in an article published in the NJ Star-Ledger, N.J. could soon get the strongest equal pay law in America:

New Jersey is now on the brink of enacting the most sweeping equal pay legislation in America.

A "historic" bill protecting women and minorities in the state from workplace discrimination passed both houses of the state Legislature on Monday, and Gov. Phil Murphy has already pledged to sign it into law.

Women working full-time in America in 2015 earned just 80 cents for every dollar that men earned, and at this rate, women won't reach pay equality until 2059, according to a report by the Institute for Women's Policy Research.

I left these comments, edited and expanded:

“Women working full-time in America in 2015 earned just 80 cents for every dollar that men earned. . .”

I can’t believe Livio is using that statistic, especially in an article for the Star-Ledger. Way back on 7/1/2012 the Star-Ledger Editorial Board said, “The 77-cent figure that’s used by the Obama administration to discuss how much a woman earns compared with a man’s dollar is bogus. It’s wrong to use that number as the basis for any corrective government policy.” (“Gaming the gap: Let's get real about gender and pay”)

The SLEB reiterated that stand often, such as on 1/26/2017, when it wrote that “An oft-cited 77-cent number is a bogus exaggeration.” (“N.J. senator gives rare insight into what a white man thinks about pay equity for women”) Maybe that gap has shrunk to 80-cents—but it’s still bogus. In 2012, The SLEB reported that “when [economists] take life choices into account, they estimate [the gap] at somewhere between 91 and 95 cents to a man’s dollar.”

In any event, statistics prove nothing, including broad-based discrimination against women, even though some employers undoubtedly do. Statistics can’t differentiate between unfair discrimination or differences in compensation based on life choices, productiveness, reliability, or myriad other factors. That’s why statistics rank below damned lies on the scale of honesty. It’s terrible to use statistics, especially bogus statistics, to justify laws. Especially one-size-fits-all laws that violate fundamental individual rights such as the moral right of employers and employees to freely contract on mutually agreed terms.

At best, this terrible law empowers whiners who, failing to get paid what they think they deserve by mutual agreement, to turn to law--the government's guns--to get it by force; or to empower women and “minority” (but not male non-”minority”) mediocrities and achievement-haters to undermine more competent co-workers’ well-deserved raises or bonuses from employers fearing “discrimination” lawsuits.* In effect, this anti-discrimination “pay equity” bill discriminates against competence, ability, intelligence, productiveness, and the good character that makes those qualities possible,

At worst, it is an attack on one’s freedom to make work choices and negotiate compensation terms based on one’s own life choices.


And if you think you can turn to NJ Republicans to defend individual rights to freedom of contract and association, consider this:

The Senate voted 35-0 to pass the bill. The Assembly's vote was 74-2 ,, with Assemblymen (sic) Michael Patrick Carroll, and Assemblyman Jay Webber, both R-Morris, voting no.

None of the 15 Republican Senators, and only 2 of the 26 Republican members of the Assembly, voted against this bill.

* [I put “minority” in scare quotes because the smallest minority is the individual, and individuals come in all colors and sexes.]

Related Reading:

Collectivist Left on 'Pay Equity for Women'

How Anti-Discrimination Laws Undermine Free Speech

There is No ‘Right to Equal Treatment’; Only the Right to ‘Equal Protection of the Law’

Does rescinding laws banning private discrimination make a moral statement in support of bigotry?

The Right to Discriminate is About Contract, Not Religion

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