Feb 112009

In the a picture is worth a thousand words department via Jill at Feministe,  this Lily Ledbetter photo op

looks a whole lot better than this Partial Birth Abortion one.

However, as Jill Miller Zimon points out, it is just mind-boggling that there is not one single woman on the  stimulus package conference committee, as in the folks who reconcile the differences between the House and Senate version to craft the final bill.

Senate Democratic leadership has announced who will be serving on the conference committee to iron out differences in the House and Senate versions of the stimulus bill.

  • Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev.
  • Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus, D-Mont.
  • Appropriations Committee Chairman Daniel Inouye, D-Hawaii
  • Finance Committee Ranking Member Charles Grassley, R-Iowa
  • Appropriations Committee Ranking Member Thad Cochran, R-Miss.

Both Finance and Appropriations were heavily involved in the creation of the Senate version, with each committee holding markups on their portions.

And for the House:

  • Appropriations Committee Chairman Dave Obey, D-Wis.
  • Ways and Means Committee Chairman Charles Rangel, D-N.Y.
  • Energy and Commerce Committee Chairman Henry Waxman, D-Calif.
  • Appropriations Committee Ranking Member Jerry Lewis, R-Calif.
  • Ways and Means Committee Ranking Member Dave Camp, R-Mich.

According to the Washington Post, a similar situation is  occurring in Britain,

“The interrogation of the lions of British banking, many of whom have lost their jobs, began on live television Tuesday before the financial overseers of Parliament’s Treasury Select Committee. And in line with the usual math of the financial world, 18 of the 19 key people in the room were men.”

Sally Keeble the only female member of the British Treasury Select Committee said,

“(S)he was most disturbed that the top echelons of British banking seemed to rely on a “cozy consensus of like-minded people” unwilling to listen to those who might challenge their views. Adding more women to the mix, she said, might help change “this macho culture” and “produce the possibility of more internal challenge.”

Or as Stuart Fraser,  a London  financial bigwig according to the WaPo,  put it perhaps a bit more succinctly,

“There are quite a lot of alpha males with testosterone steaming out their ears.”

The Wa Po also provides the grim statistics of women’s lack of status in the corporate world:

In Britain, women account for just 12 percent of corporate directorships of companies on the FTSE 100 stock exchange index, according to a group of major British business leaders who have called for “urgent action” to increase the number of women at the top levels of business.

In the United States, women hold 17 percent of the corporate directorships — and 2.5 percent of the CEO posts — in the finance and insurance industries, according to Catalyst, a U.S.-based nonprofit group that promotes opportunities for women in business.

And as Zimon points out, only 17% of Congress is female.  As we have pointed out relentlessly on this blog during the last few months, there is no shortage of women who can speak knowledgably about the economy and further that an economic plan that does not address the specific needs of women is both unacceptable and doomed to failure.

When my kids were younger, I used to recite a version of the Gettysburg address to them that went, “Four score and seven years ago, while our foremothers were changing dirty diapers and making supper…”

Enough already.  To the male powers that be who royally effed up the economy:  go pour your own damned coffee, bring us a cup while you’re at it and sit down, shut up and listen.  We’ve got a whole lot more experience cleaning messes up than you do and you’ve got a wad of ‘splaining to do.

 February 11, 2009  Posted by on February 11, 2009

  4 Responses to “The Girls’ Guide To The Economy Part 8–There are NO Women On The Stimulus Conference Committee”

  1. […] February 11, 2009 by ruralwomyn Feminist Peace Network says there are not enough women involved in creating the solution to a problem created by men. Read the whole post. < To the male powers that be who royally effed up the economy: go pour your own damned coffee, bring us a cup while you’re at it and sit down, shut up and listen. We’ve got a whole lot more experience cleaning messes up than you do and you’ve got a wad of ’splaining to do. […]

  2. Excellent post. Very distressing. We need a better way to break through all this rigamarole!!

  3. One thing that has remained constant through the entire bank bailout presidential changing of the guard and now this big stimulus to jump start the economy is the overwhelming and conscious effort to not rock the boat in any way. It’s no mistake that the people in charge of all of this fiscal stimulation are the people least likely to upset the status quo. Women would do exactly what these men don’t want, which is why you don’t see them on these committees.

  4. I keep on hesitating, waiting for some magical thing to happen that says women are in leadership and seated at the decision tables. When is this politeness fulfilled? People have told me that after 100 days, the gloves come off – whose gloves, mine? his? conservatives? progressives?
    All I know is 51% of Americans are not fairly represented. Committees, cabinets, houses, offices will be set in 100 days ~ aren’t those decisions, being made now, the important ones?

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