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Quillette: Don’t worry about the pay gap, ladies, because you could always become “a bar prostitute, a girlfriend, or a wife”

Cha-chingggg!

By David Futrelle

Now I know you ladies like to complain about that pesky pay gap. But there’s no need to worry your pretty little heads (or bodies) about it, because some dude on Quillette has some great ideas on how to extract all the money you need from hapless cash-rich, sex-poor men. Even if — especially if — you live in a mining town, as so many of you gals do these days.

Take it away, Jerry Barnett, self-described “technologist, author, and campaigner.”

On the surface, in a mining town, the gender pay gap is huge, with the vast majority of money officially going to men.

“Officially.”

And yet, by Saturday morning, much of the cash has been transferred to bar owners, prostitutes, girlfriends, and wives.

But Jerry doesn’t seem to mind about the money going to bar owners. He’s more concerned about the money “transferred” to the latter three groups because of all the sex.

While most fair-minded people would no doubt agree that women should be free to take mining jobs if they choose, it’s unlikely that many women want such gruelling, dangerous, and unhealthy work when being a bar prostitute, a girlfriend, or a wife to a miner is available as an alternative.

I’m sure there’s nothing grueling or dangerous about being a sex worker in a testosterone-heavy mining town in the middle of nowhere.

Later on in the same post, Mr. Barnett tries to prove that men are “the low-value sex,” biologically speaking. As partial evidence for this claim, he cites … marijuana plants.

Even in plants (at least those species that produce separate male and female flowers), the females are forced to invest more. It is no coincidence that marijuana farmers destroy male plants, and retain the females for their big, resin-heavy flowers. Females are more valuable, almost everywhere.

Even later, he talks about cave men hunting the “largest mammals” to extinction so they could give the cave ladies meat for sex, thus making these big beasts “an early casualty of the human sex trade.” (Never mind that there’s no actual evidence of the meat-for-sex hypothesis; it’s just an evo psych “just so” story.)

Now, technically, Barnett didn’t mention mammoths by name. But “largest mammals?” Come on. I think this is close enough to count as a “we hunted the mammoth to feed you have sex with you” moment caught in the wild.

Really a lot of innovative thinking going on over on the Quillette there.

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magnesium
magnesium
1 year ago

There is literally nothing and nobody stopping ol’ Jerry from becoming a sex working in a mining town bar, if he’s truly certain it’s such a luxurious, easy money-making scheme.

Crip Dyke
1 year ago

@magnesium:

Word.

If it’s so desirable a job, why don’t they desire the job? Hmmmm.

Dalillama
Dalillama
1 year ago

@Magnesium
Depends on the mining town. A lotta them are in places where sex work is illegal.

Naglfar
Naglfar
1 year ago

@dalillama

Depends on the mining town. A lotta them are in places where sex work is illegal.

Quillette is based in Australia, where prostitution is legal, so Jerry could probably get into sex work without too much difficultly…don’t know if there are still many mining towns in Australia, though.

kupo
kupo
1 year ago

don’t know if there are still many mining towns in Australia, though.

They have gemstone mines at the very least; particularly opal is a big one there.

Ariaflame
Ariaflame
1 year ago

Largely FIFO mining camps these days I think. Maybe some gems still mined in towns.

weirwoodtreehugger: chief manatee

Again my theory that reactionaries are largely from upper class backgrounds holds. This fucking obsession with mining is ridiculous. It’s literally the only blue collar job they can think of. At least the only they can pretend to view as noble because mining towns in the US, Europe and Australia are largely white. Presumably they don’t have pretend solidarity with miners in say, Madagascar or Bolivia. Fast food, PCA, and custodial work on the other hand, lots of black and Latinx workers. Lots of women. No good for pretend solidarity.

Buttercup Q. Skullpants
Buttercup Q. Skullpants
1 year ago

On the surface, in a mining town, the gender pay gap is huge, with the vast majority of money officially going to men.

And then officially being transferred back to (largely) male shop owners, farmers, doctors, and landlords, when wives and girlfriends use the money to buy food, clothing, and so on.

Who’s really got the power here: the sex worker, or the company store that has a monopoly on the things people need to stay alive?

Not to mention the fact that the husbands also partake of the food and shelter that this money buys. Nope, the money just goes to sex workers, who coil up around it like a dragon.

Cyborgette
Cyborgette
1 year ago

“Even in plants (at least those species that produce separate male and female flowers), the females are forced to invest more. It is no coincidence that marijuana farmers destroy male plants, and retain the females for their big, resin-heavy flowers. Females are more valuable, almost everywhere.”

giggles loudly

This is so not the pitch for male supremacy that he thinks it is.

Naglfar
Naglfar
1 year ago

@WWTH
Yup. The rhetoric here sounds pretty similar to Trump’s thoughts on coal. For the same reasons.

@Cyborgette

This is so not the pitch for male supremacy that he thinks it is.

It misses the mark so far, I’m almost curious what he was thinking it meant. I’m guessing he was going for a “male disposability” argument, but still misses the mark.

Crip Dyke
1 year ago

Australia has a huge extraction industry. It’s not just gems (like opal, of which they do have quite a lot) but the biggest iron mines on the planet are in Australia, IIRC (certainly very, very big ones), coal extraction is huge, and other important metals & minerals you’d recognize are being mined extensively in Australia.

Wikipedia sites the 2002 Treasurer of Australia (Peter Costello) for this information:

Mining contributes about 5.6% of Australia’s Gross Domestic Product. This is up from only 2.6% in 1950, but down from over 10% at the time of federation in 1901.[26] In contrast, mineral exports contribute around 35% of Australia’s exports. Australia is the world’s largest exporter of coal (35% of international trade), iron ore, lead, diamonds, rutile, zinc and zirconium, second largest of gold and uranium, and third largest of aluminium

Naglfar
Naglfar
1 year ago

@Crip Dyke

Australia has a huge extraction industry.

So there’s clearly no shortage of potential customers for Jerry. What’s he waiting for?

Crip Dyke
1 year ago

Just for accuracy, I looked it up.

The 7th, 8th, and 10th largest iron mines in the world are all in Australia, but not the biggest.

The top 4 are actually all in Brazil, even though in total Australia produces more iron than Brazil does.

Australia does have the largest mineable deposits, but not the largest mines – nor does it actually produce the most per year. That’s China, which is responsible for 44% of global iron production according to worldatlas.com

/nerdout

Lainy
Lainy
1 year ago

I had to put Jessie to sleep today. He was 16 years old and a life long friend. He’s with his sister now in heaven and that’s the only comfort I have right now

Troubelle: Moonbeam Malcontent, Bard of the New Movement
Troubelle: Moonbeam Malcontent, Bard of the New Movement
1 year ago

@Lainy

My most earnest sympathies.

Surplus to Requirements, Observer of the Vast Blight-Wing Enstupidation
Surplus to Requirements, Observer of the Vast Blight-Wing Enstupidation
1 year ago

🙁 what happened?

Naglfar
Naglfar
1 year ago

@Lainy
I am so sorry for your loss. My condolences.

varalys the dark
1 year ago

Lainy, I am so sorry.

StaceySmartyPantsTwiceRemoved
StaceySmartyPantsTwiceRemoved
1 year ago

@Lainy

I am very sorry for your loss.

galanx
galanx
1 year ago

On the meat-for-sex theory, my favorite was the (non-credentialed) ev-psych guy who used it to explain the origin of white skin, blonde hair, and blue eyes. You see, in warmer climes women could gather or grow their own plant food, and thus make an economic contribution to the family. In more northern places they couldn’t, and had to evolve the aforesaid traits so they could stand out from the crowd of females who were begging meat from the hunters. Why the hunters didn’t run screaming “ghost” he didn’t explain- I guess in his mind these attributes are just so naturally attractive that it didn’t need reasons.

Johanna
Johanna
1 year ago

I’m just so amused by these MRAs from Europe/North America/Australia who talk about mining as though mines still look the way they did in the 1800s. They really don’t (I know that mines in countries with poor labour protection laws like the US can be quite bad still). It’s not men with pickaxes crawling through tight tunnels with the help of a lantern anymore. I’ve been in a modern mine in Sweden. It’s large, well-lit tunnels (often paved) wide enough to drive massive machines through. There’s usually electricity and air conditioning and frequently even proper rails in the main tunnels for trains to bring out the ore. It’s certainly skilled work, and more physical than a white collar job, but it’s not even close to what these people seem to imagine. Most of the hard physical work is done by machines.

A female dominated job like nursing is far harder on the body and more likely to end in injury (whether from repetitive strain or from being attacked by a patient) than any job in a mine. But of course that doesn’t fit with the MRA talking point of men doing all the hard work and women sitting around eating bonbons.

LollyPop
LollyPop
1 year ago

If only we girls were clever enough to realise that life for us could be just so simple! I for one am heading straight to the first mining town that Maggie Thatcher didn’t destroy and signing up for a life of stress-free leeching. I can finally try a bit of that fried Mammoth they’ve all been raving about!

Penny Psmith
Penny Psmith
1 year ago

@galanx:
This is a fascinating bit of asspull. I wonder how he’d square that with the fact that the human communities that live in the coldest, northern-most climes, and that traditionally would rely the most on hunting and fishing for meat and the least on gathering plant matter (especially in winter) are the arctic circle indigenous peoples. Not a lot of blue-eyed blondes in those, and yet they still manage to reproduce!

PickleFields
PickleFields
1 year ago

What I get from that is that evo-psych fans are dimwits who don’t understand bottlenecking or genetic drift and won’t do five minutes of research before they start making shit up.

Amtep
Amtep
1 year ago

I think we can all be glad that the money was transferred to people who can handle it responsibly, rather than just spending all of it on booze and sex.

Cat Mara
Cat Mara
1 year ago

@galanx: I remember reading an article in the National Geographic magazine a few years ago where a research team visited a remote area in Ethiopia rarely visited by people with white skin. Did the locals fall over themselves enraptured by their pasty glory? Nah, the first question they asked was, “Are you guys lepers?” 😂

(They also visited another remote place where the last white visitors were… Mussolini’s troops when they invaded what was then Abyssinia. The reaction there was, “you fucking assholes back again?” Memories are long)

Victorious Parasol
1 year ago

I’m so sorry for your loss, Lainy.

Naglfar
Naglfar
1 year ago

@galanx
That one is so ridiculous I’m betting even most MRAs could see through it. I mean, where does one even come up with that crap?.

@Johanna
I’ve visited some old, now closed silver and gold mines in Nevada, and those look a lot more like what the MRAs seem to have as an image. I haven’t visited any modern ones, so I’ll take your word on it.
Their ignorance on the mines also probably has something to do with what WWTH said about their complete ignorance of what working class jobs are actually like.

@LollyPop

I can finally try a bit of that fried Mammoth they’ve all been raving about!

Well, people have eaten frozen mammoth carcasses in the last century, but the only description of their taste that I can find is “awful”. Which doesn’t surprise me for something that has been frozen for thousands of years.

Ohlmann
Ohlmann
1 year ago

@Lainy : hope you will get better somehow :/

@Cat Mara : conversely, my great-grand mother actually fled screaming “there’s demons in town !” when she have seen a black people for the first time. It was an american soldier in 1944. As it’s often the case, it’s not the europeans who handle a situation in the most gracious way.

The first though about this post is that, when there is a gold boom, money is in selling shovels. Based on that, in a gold boom city I would indeed take a job of prostitute over a job of miner, but neither are super high in the ladder of actually making money from the gold boom.

(and for actual, modern-day mines ? Dunno. I don’t even have pop culture knowledge of how thoses work)

Allandrel
Allandrel
1 year ago

Well, obviously mining towns are key here, because where else are you going to get the Minerals that you require more of?

I eagerly await this guy’s thoughts on how women can get Vespene Gas without harvesting it themselves.

@Naglfar

Yup. The rhetoric here sounds pretty similar to Trump’s thoughts on coal. For the same reasons.

The question is, does Dude On Quilette think that “clean coal” is “coal that has been washed” as Trump does?

Naglfar
Naglfar
1 year ago

@Allandrel

does Dude On Quilette think that “clean coal” is “coal that has been washed” as Trump does?

Probably. Wait, does Trump actually think that? That’s dumb even for him.

Dvärghundspossen
Dvärghundspossen
1 year ago

That supposed evolutionary explanation for blond hair is incredibly stupid. We know that pale skin is important for getting enough vitamin D if you a) live far up north, and b) don’t have a ton of vitamin D in the food you eat (I mean, in the days of yore, before vitamin supplements were a thing). So northern-dwelling people who, say, rely on fishing and eat a lot of herring can be darker, but if they’re gonna eat, like, plants, grouse and moose and not much else, they need to be pale.
Presumably, blond hair and blue eyes could arise as a by-product of pale skin. Not everything must have a function. By-products can spread through a population too, unless they’re actually harmful. (Re indigenous people in the Arctic area, there are many blond Sami, but they might be the exception to the rule… I guess the other indigenous peoples far up north tend to have black hair.)

Dvärghundspossen
Dvärghundspossen
1 year ago

Unlike Johanna, I’ve never been to the big mines up in Kiruna, even though I live up north. 🙂 But I just checked their website, and yeah, they have pics of these huge tunnels that you can drive cars through and stuff. They also write that the deep tunnels, that go over a kilometer down into the ground, are mined by robots, so they don’t have human miners down there (at least not normally). Also, they seem to employ a fair amount of women… Someone should tell those gals that they could just quit and become sexworkers/wives/girlfriends instead, since that’s much easier.

Dvärghundspossen
Dvärghundspossen
1 year ago

HAHAHAHA this is the site where LKAB, the huge mining company in northern Sweden, announces that they seek new employees: https://www.lkab.com/sv/karriar/jobba-hos-lkab/lediga-tjanster/ They have a picture of a GIRL MINER on the page!!!!! Someone, direct her to the Quillette piece!

teabug
1 year ago

In other news, I get really full from eating one frosted strawberry Pop-Tart. Then again, one frosted strawberry Pop-Tart is considered one serving, so my appetite and satiety level can be considered normal. Also, I do toast them, just enough to heat them all the way through, and have them with a cup of four red fruits or blackcurrant tea. I eat the Pop-Tart first because by the time I’m done eating it, the tea is sufficiently cool to drink, thus washing with it any remaining pastry crumbs stuck in one’s teeth. In my house, Pop-Tarts are a Saturday-food. On regular days I’ll have a carrot or an apple for a snack, sometimes with a teaspoon of peanut butter. It’s good restitution after a workout, but hey; treating yourself every once in a while is self-care, too.

… That’s the best I could do. The assertions above make absolutely no sense. The commentary was aces, though. Here’s a Pop-Tart.

Jeffrey Deutsch
Jeffrey Deutsch
1 year ago

Can you put in a link to the Quillette article in question, please, so I can read it and decide for myself if it means what you claim it means?

Thank you!

Lumipuna (nee Arctic Ape)
Lumipuna (nee Arctic Ape)
1 year ago

Dvärghundspossen:

We know that pale skin is important for getting enough vitamin D if you a) live far up north, and b) don’t have a ton of vitamin D in the food you eat (I mean, in the days of yore, before vitamin supplements were a thing). So northern-dwelling people who, say, rely on fishing and eat a lot of herring can be darker, but if they’re gonna eat, like, plants, grouse and moose and not much else, they need to be pale.

AFAIK, pretty much all northern hunter-gatherers are basically hunter-fishermen as far as their traditional diets go. Meanwhile, a mostly agricultural diet might actually provide insufficient vitamin D. Incidentally, Europe is pretty much the only region where prehistoric agriculture was well-established above 50 degrees north. Also, IIRC, one recent gene study suggested that European characteristic paleness evolved only a few thousand years ago (that is, after agriculture was introduced).

Presumably, blond hair and blue eyes could arise as a by-product of pale skin. Not everything must have a function. By-products can spread through a population too, unless they’re actually harmful.

Indeed, in small populations there’s often random genetic drift, and I think random cultural trends might also affect sexual selection.

(Re indigenous people in the Arctic area, there are many blond Sami, but they might be the exception to the rule… I guess the other indigenous peoples far up north tend to have black hair.)

I don’t know how often the Sami are actually blonde, but stereotypically they are somewhat darker than nearby agricultural peoples. And of course there’s been extensive interbreeding.

Dalillama
Dalillama
1 year ago

@Dvärghundspossen

(Re indigenous people in the Arctic area, there are many blond Sami, but they might be the exception to the rule…

They’ve been living in close proximity to blond Scandinavians for a few thousand years. People being as they are, a certain amount of genetic mixing is inevitable.

Dvärghundspossen
Dvärghundspossen
1 year ago

I know that there’s this stereotype of what a Sami is supposed to look like: High, wide cheekbones and black hair. But in reality, although some Sami look like that, there are also lots of blond ones, like, it’s not unusual at all, and lots of Sami who’s more inbetween when it comes to hair colour etc.

Dalillama’s comment makes sense: Since southern Swedes and the Sami lived on the same peninsula for literal millenia before the north was actually colonized, we’re probably really mixed up genetically. I think the idea that Sami, in general, has a distinct and different look might be a product of the racist propaganda of the nineteenth and early twentieth century, when colonization was rationalized by claiming the Sami were a different and inferiour race.

Dvärghundspossen
Dvärghundspossen
1 year ago

Also, IIRC, one recent gene study suggested that European characteristic paleness evolved only a few thousand years ago (that is, after agriculture was introduced).

I think it was actually like this: The first inhabitants of southern Scandinavia were dark-skinned fishermen. Then, like five thousand years ago or so, agricultural people from continental Europe invaded, and wiped them all out.

Lumipuna (nee Arctic Ape)
Lumipuna (nee Arctic Ape)
1 year ago

Some of my latest comments seem to have been eaten. Is this one coming out?

Lumipuna (nee Arctic Ape)
Lumipuna (nee Arctic Ape)
1 year ago

Certainly, there are exceptions to rules.

As for some major population displacement in relation to the introduction of agriculture, such thing is now thought to have happened in Britain (and perhaps other parts of Europe?) but I suspect paleness evolved after that.

Lumipuna (nee Arctic Ape)
Lumipuna (nee Arctic Ape)
1 year ago

I still can’t post comments with links here, apparently, because Mammoth never forgets the sins of my male ancestors.

Naglfar
Naglfar
1 year ago

I suspect paleness evolved after that.

I’d imagine white supremacists wouldn’t exactly be pleased to learn that their ancestors had dark skin and later evolved lighter skin.
Especially since white supremacists fetishize Northern Europeans and Vikings in particular as living in some sort of racially homogenous era. The Viking sagas would differ on that, describing a large number of different ethnic groups that Vikings encountered in their travels.

Lumipuna (nee Arctic Ape)
Lumipuna (nee Arctic Ape)
1 year ago

Speaking of hunting ice age supermegafauna,

I’ve been lately reading a Finnish book on ice age ecosystems (Mammutin aika by Tom Björklund and Seppo Vuokko), with magnificent painted illustrations by artist Tom Björklund.

I wish I could show you folks one particular illustration, a painting of three male human hunters quietly paying respect to a mammoth they’ve just killed. It’s a very solemn and emotional image, not the least because the dead animal is rather photorealistic.

The illustration relates to a hypothesis presented in the book, that humans went on to kill the last mammoths (an other large animals that went extinct) in part because killing them was so culturally prestigious, and so significant as a cultural tradition. In a hunter-gatherer culture traditionally dealing with a lot of large game, killing a large animal would be likely codified as a necessary rite of passage for young men to enter adulthood. As large animals became rare, people were able to rely on smaller game, fish and plants, but they still went out of their way to kill large game whenever possible. Kind of tragic, if true.

In the painting, the three men’s faces seem weary, unfathomable. I can just imagine them feeling quiet joy of achievement, thinking “We hunted the mammoth, too”.

Prith kDar
Prith kDar
1 year ago

@ Jeffrey Deutsch:

Dave always links to his sources. In this case and as usual, it’s in the first paragraph, hyperlinked to the words, “some great ideas.”

You should check your browser preferences to show hyperlinks in a different color from normal text so that in future you can easily find these for yourself.

Cyborgette
Cyborgette
1 year ago

Can you put in a link to the Quillette article in question, please, so I can read it and decide for myself if it means what you claim it means?

sniff sniff

Hmmmmmmmm. Dude name handle, check. Obtuseness, check. “Subtly” implying bad faith, check. Hmmmm.

comment image

weirwoodtreehugger: chief manatee

I mean, it’s Quillette. What more does one need to know?

Lainy
Lainy
1 year ago

Thank you everyone for the kind words. The vet thinks Jessie had diabetes because there was this awful smell coming from him for the last couple of day. It was like he was already rotting. His system started shutting down and he wasn’t able to walk. He probably would have died on his own in a day or two but we couldn’t let him suffer. The vet a light sedative to help him relax and then gave the dosage. it was very peaceful and he was in our arms. With me telling him how much I loved him and that it was okay for him to go. That he was going to be with his sister so don’t be afraid. We’ve had him since I was 5 and I don’t know what to do without them both in my life now.

Jeffrey Deutsch
Jeffrey Deutsch
1 year ago

Prith kDar:

Thanks for the tip. I didn’t see the link when I first read the post, but it stands out quite clearly now. I don’t know whether I just missed it or Mr. Futrelle made a change later on.