27 Oct 2006, Comments Off on Extry! Jim Schembri now expert on feminism!

Extry! Jim Schembri now expert on feminism!

Author: Helen

Many people blame feminism for promoting the concept that motherhood runs a poor second to a career of boardrooms and paper jams. And I do, too. (Feminism is still a good idea. It just needs to be digitally remastered to include women.)But I thought we’d moved past all that. Apparently not.

Image from Burke's Backyard (website of another wellknown tool). Watch out, Jimbo!!

The word “tool” needs redefining, as it doesn’t currently encompass the full tooliness of this tool. (Do you like the way he assumes the women will be the ones dealing with the paper jams?)

Comments (0)

  • Ms Batville says:

    That damn article got me so angry this morning.

    When I got to work one of my male colleagues looked at me pleadingly when the copier jammed and I told him to wait to be rescued by the patriachy. He looked stunned poor bugger.

  • Laura says:

    I was hoping somebody would note the tooliness.

  • Helen says:

    Tooliness exceptional this week.

  • Pavlov's Cat says:

    I think it’s because we’re the ones with the eyebrow tweezers.

    Always worked for me.

  • Kate says:

    Does the dude even GET what a shit deal motherhood is for most women — hello fairly taxing life-theatening process called pregnancy and birth, hello body changing forEVAH, hello wage gap, hello mummy track, hello ‘work-life balance’ or lack thereof, hello second shift and so on?

    And yet, astonishingly, many of us still do it anyway?

    And even more astonishingly, he thinks it’s FEMINISM that gives having babies a bad name?

  • Kate says:

    Not dissing women who choose to have babies — I do understand the plus-sides are many, I’m just saying out that making the decision whether or not to have children is not exactly like choosing between an ice-cream sundae and a thickshake.

  • Pavlov's Cat says:

    No, more like choosing between a cold Big Mac and a box of stale Turkish Delight. Sorry, Kate, but in this society, not having them is worse. If you are a woman over 40 without children then it’s still taken for granted by about 95% of the population, ie most women as well as all men, that there is something either physically or psychologically wrong with you. (Or both.) And if you wilt and collapse under the strain of this assumption, they will say triumphantly “There! Of course, it’s because the poor thing has no children.”

  • Of course the women have to clear the paper jams – the men are too stupid to know how to.

  • Kate says:

    Perhaps from a social perspective, PC — as in, the crap you get from other people for your life choices, and you are right about how ‘suspect’ women with children are in our society — but in terms of money, career progression and life opportunities I don’t think having children gives women any advantages whatsoever.

    In fact, I recently read figures that suggest a childfree woman in Australia will be $200 000 better off over the course of her life than one with children.

    My point, which I perhaps put badly, is that for someone in my position — currently weighing up whether or not to have children, and if I do, when to do so — is that the consequences of having a baby are HUGE, and not just in terms of ‘oh look here’s this other person we’ve made, what to do with them now?’.

    If I do have children, my earning capacity will drop precipitously and I’ll be setting myself up, most likely, for extended periods where I am reliant on another human being — my male partner — for financial support. My super will be lower than his, reducing my quality of life once I retire, etc etc.

    Not to mention that if we have children we’ll probably be doing it with very little familial or societal support — barebones maternity leave, expensive childcare, a precariously funded education system, a cruddy healthcare system, and so on. Not to mention all the rubbish about being a super-mum etc.

    And if my partner and I happen to break up in this post-child future, I’ll be stuck with a patchy career progression, reduced earning capacity, and one or more dependents for whom I will be most likely almost entirely responsible for.

    Most women my age are pretty aware of the same set of future possibilities. Yes, I know not having kids will also have downsides, as you’ve so eloquently put it. But from MY perspective, it’s a shitty choice, and I find it quite remarkable that given all of the above women still want to have children. I find it remarkable that sometimes I still want to have children.

    And I blame none of it on feminism, because my feminism wants the world to be more accommodating to people who want to parent and those who don’t. I want a world where having children doesn’t automatically mean women earn less money, and I want a world where not having children doesn’t automatically make one a freak.

    Anyway, that’s my rant du jour, sorry Helen…

  • Zoe says:

    I’m offering to create a paper jam problem if someone can just sort me a ream of Reflex and find out where Mr Schembri hangs out.

  • Helen says:

    What are you going to do to him with the ream of Reflex, Zoe?

  • Helen says:

    And I blame none of it on feminism, because my feminism wants the world to be more accommodating to people who want to parent and those who don’t. I want a world where having children doesn’t automatically mean women earn less money, and I want a world where not having children doesn’t automatically make one a freak.


  • Helen says:

    Hey, for those who haven’t checked out Paul’s blog: go to buggery! Sorry, couldn’t resist.

    As any fule kno, a paper jam is not a job for any one person. It takes half a dozen people thronging around, humming and haa-ing and avoiding doing any actual work for at least 20 minutes.

  • Pavlov's Cat says:

    And watching the one with the eyebrow tweeers and getting in her way, chiz chiz.

    Kate, no, no, I wasn’t advocating either (and I speak as someone for whom, unlike you, it is now too late to make the choice). I was saying that under patriarchy, even now, both choices are still crap. For me it was more a matter of survival in a career in which women were at that time grotesquely under-represented, and in which I could do the things I’m best at … and in which the standard woman’s home life was an impossibility. My point was not that having them is better than not having them, but that whichever choice you make, you will be stuffed.

  • Zoe says:

    Not as stuffed as Jim will be, if momma gets her way …

  • Kate says:

    Yeah, I agree, PC, stuffed both ways, and I’m not saying one is worse than the other — though given declining fertility rates worldwide, I think women are voting with their ovaries…

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