My AEI colleague Charles Murray has been predicting for a while now that within a decade, fundamental gender differences will become so obvious that it will look foolish to deny them. Today in the Boston Globe comes a bit of evidence that he’s going to be proved right--a survey of studies showing women, in general, are less interested in science than men. So much for discrimination as the reason for so few women in science.
Perhaps the most significant sentence in the story is this: "In her controversial new book, The Sexual Paradox: Men, Women, and the Real Gender Gap, Susan Pinker gathers data from the journal Science and a variety of sources that show that in countries where women have the most freedom to choose their careers, the gender divide is the most pronounced." This isn’t going to go down well in Harvard yard.
As the saying goes, read the whole thing.
Larry Summers was butchered because no one was willing to understand standard deviation...women as a group might have less variance in IQ, which means fewer dull women and fewer genuis women, ironically if women in general are less prone to risk taking, which hormone studies seem to confirm, then in the Rawlsian sense they get the best end of the stick, but these stubborn feminists where too busy troubling themselves over the political and sociological ramifications to sit back and think about it like liberals are supposed to do in "theory".
Personally I am tempted to wonder if the feminist agenda isn't too far embroiled in a culture war with conservative talk radio to extricate themselves from what looks to be nothing more than a Prisoners Dilemma gone horribly awry. In a simple prisoners dilemma under oligopolistic conditions eventually there is some hope for salvation via collusion under the repeated game model. Of course in the oligopolistic conditions economists generally fear collusion...in this case the feminist movement and conservative talk radio combined form two extremely large cartels...so large in fact that one would be tempted to say that perfect competition occurs. Nevertheless too much preocupation with perfect competition misses the point...if it is perfect competition the product is radical feminism on the one hand and chauvanistic chivalry on the other. Firms compete to produce the purest product, moderation sells poorly. If it is to be conceptualized as a Cartel then each side has an incentive to "cheat" by doctoring up and radicalizing the product. Any attempt to collude in the culture war Cartel is drowned out and precluded by the dominant strategy equilibrium. The strongest voices in each Cartel are the ones who never waver from dominant strategy equilibrium...cheat, cheat, cheat, cheat....
Larry Summers was supposed to be an economist the fact that he missed out on identifying a massive scale prisoners delimma and thus acted in opposition to dominant strategy equilibrium speaks poorly of him.