The Conservative War On Women

Malor wrote:

That's not entirely true, SpacePPoliceman... for instance, if you use your wages to party hard after work, and the pictures get out, you might end up fired. Everything you putatively did was legal, but you get fired anyway, for 'projecting a bad image for the firm'.

Employers do get to impose some values on you, even in your private life. I personally don't think they should be able to cross this particular line, but they already come quite close. This is just a more invasive version of what, say, Chick-Fil-A already does.

I think it's not just wrong, but egregiously wrong, and it's totally focused on shaming and controlling the sluts, but it is logically connected to what they already do.

Out of curiosity, what does Chick-Fil-A do? I've already been boycotting them since that funding anti-gay marriage groups fiasco they found themselves in.

I'd say it's pretty clear from my statement that I don't agree with Facebook pic firings either--it's another component of this entitled demi-god aura employers like to think they project these days.

Philosophically, I don't see much difference between employers bitching about insurance plans covering birth control and bitching about paychecks ending up at Supermarket A rather than Supermarket B, or demanding they get final approval on employees car purchases. We wouldn't humor the latter two, and I think it's absurd anyone humors the former.

Out of curiosity, what does Chick-Fil-A do? I've already been boycotting them since that funding anti-gay marriage groups fiasco they found themselves in.

Well, from what I've read, when you go for an interview there, apparently they end up interviewing a bunch of your family and friends to make sure you're 'a good fit' (ie, devout Christian). They try very hard to hire only Christians, though because it's a franchise, apparently some try harder than others. And I gather getting a franchise license is excruciatingly difficult.

That actually doesn't bother me that much; I find it unpleasant, but tolerable. When they start using that money to promote hate, though, that's crossing the line to me. I know that some percentage of any money I spend at Chick-Fil-A is used to hurt people, and I'll have no part of it.

Oh, and:

I'd say it's pretty clear from my statement that I don't agree with Facebook pic firings either

I'm not sure if I communicated correctly there, but I disagree with it also, and I wasn't saying you did. I was just saying that employers have done that for a long time, long before Facebook. It was happening when I was first getting into the workforce, and I assume it goes back much, much farther than that.

Malor wrote:

That's not entirely true, SpacePPoliceman... for instance, if you use your wages to party hard after work, and the pictures get out, you might end up fired. Everything you putatively did was legal, but you get fired anyway, for 'projecting a bad image for the firm'.

Employers do get to impose some values on you, even in your private life. I personally don't think they should be able to cross this particular line, but they already come quite close. This is just a more invasive version of what, say, Chick-Fil-A already does.

I think it's not just wrong, but egregiously wrong, and it's totally focused on shaming and controlling the sluts, but it is logically connected to what they already do.

See there's a big difference there, I think. In the example you give it's the employer saying "We disagree with how you spent your money, therefore we refuse to give you more" whereas by limiting what the employees can get from their health care provider the employer is saying "We're not going to let you spend the money we give you on things we disagree with."

The employer is almost always able to simply let the employee go and not give them more money or benefits and I don't have much issue with that. But putting preconditions on the money and benefits they give to employees is over the line.

bnpederson wrote:
Malor wrote:

That's not entirely true, SpacePPoliceman... for instance, if you use your wages to party hard after work, and the pictures get out, you might end up fired. Everything you putatively did was legal, but you get fired anyway, for 'projecting a bad image for the firm'.

Employers do get to impose some values on you, even in your private life. I personally don't think they should be able to cross this particular line, but they already come quite close. This is just a more invasive version of what, say, Chick-Fil-A already does.

I think it's not just wrong, but egregiously wrong, and it's totally focused on shaming and controlling the sluts, but it is logically connected to what they already do.

See there's a big difference there, I think. In the example you give it's the employer saying "We disagree with how you spent your money, therefore we refuse to give you more" whereas by limiting what the employees can get from their health care provider the employer is saying "We're not going to let you spend the money we give you on things we disagree with."

The employer is almost always able to simply let the employee go and not give them more money or benefits and I don't have much issue with that. But putting preconditions on the money and benefits they give to employees is over the line.

Well put. They have control over your employment, but not over how you spend the fruits of that employment.

There are numerous employers that make you sign acceptable behavior clauses pre-employment. For that matter, non-competes are a form of control that are extremely common. They're not enforceable in California, but they apply in most other states.

And if you ever want to see a huge list of restrictions that are imposed on you just for getting a job, try working for the government sometime.

The contraception thing really isn't that unusual. I think you're going to have a hard time delineating why it's wrong and the existing employment arrangements are not.

I personally think they're mostly a crock of sh*t, except probably government restrictions, but they do exist, and they're apparently legal and Constitutional in most states.

It's not a direct form of behavior control. As far as I understand it, the Catholic Church simply doesn't want to be known to be paying for those services, even when it's a form of compensation. This would be similar to a nonprofit green organization not allowing you to choose a Hummer on your car plan, even when it's commonplace on car plan packages from other employers.

It's a damned-if-you-do, damned-if-you-don't situation. If they go the route they're going, they get this kind of headache. If they go the other way, they get criticized for being hypocrites on contraception packages. There's no way they can do anything acceptable.

LarryC wrote:

It's not a direct form of behavior control. As far as I understand it, the Catholic Church simply doesn't want to be known to be paying for those services, even when it's a form of compensation. This would be similar to a nonprofit green organization not allowing you to choose a Hummer on your car plan, even when it's commonplace on car plan packages from other employers.

It's a damned-if-you-do, damned-if-you-don't situation. If they go the route they're going, they get this kind of headache. If they go the other way, they get criticized for being hypocrites on contraception packages. There's no way they can do anything acceptable.

They weren't called hypocrites when their employees had contraception covered by their insurance before, so I don't see why you'd think that. It's only recently that they've decided they have a problem with it. If the situation was that they were being forced to provide contraceptives to direct employees (priests, nuns, etc) where adhering to their religious beliefs is a requirement for the job, then they'd be in that situation, but they've already got an exception for that. What they're complaining about is not being able to control what their non-Catholic employees spend their money on.
I've also never heard of a car plan. I know some companies will provide cars for their higher-ups, but the company normally picks the car. I'd imagine any company that offers one limits it on a different basis, like they partner with a car company and they'll lease any of their cars. Anyways, it's a fair bit different as the kind of car you drive doesn't have a direct impact on your health, and car ownership is not so intrinsically linked to employment, like health care is over here. There also isn't a law that you have to own a car, like there is now for having health insurance.

s far as I understand it, the Catholic Church simply doesn't want to be known to be paying for those services, even when it's a form of compensation.

LarryC, all over the world, the Catholic Church fights vehemently against contraception. There is probably no force in the world that has caused more deaths from HIV than they have.

Saying that they're not anti-contraception is so far beyond ridiculous that you don't even belong in the conversation. You are lost in the world of wishful thinking, where the organization you love doesn't do the things it does.

You might as well, absolutely literally, be saying that they don't believe in Jesus, or that evangelicals love abortion, and throw parties whenever they're allowed to get one.

Malor wrote:
s far as I understand it, the Catholic Church simply doesn't want to be known to be paying for those services, even when it's a form of compensation.

LarryC, all over the world, the Catholic Church fights vehemently against contraception. There is probably no force in the world that has caused more deaths from HIV than they have.

To be fair, the Church seems to be starting to come around on condom use when it comes to HIV. It's not going to make up for the lies they've told about HIV & condoms, and they still don't approve of them as contraceptives, but it's a start.

LarryC wrote:

It's a damned-if-you-do, damned-if-you-don't situation. If they go the route they're going, they get this kind of headache. If they go the other way, they get criticized for being hypocrites on contraception packages. There's no way they can do anything acceptable.

The Church did not come out against a rule that employers must provide contraception options in insurance plans for the first decade or so that it existed. Some Catholic institutions that were in violation complied with the law after being challenged; others tried to litigate out of it, but the Church did not ban compliance or come out against it in policy until it turned up in an Obama rule that said that insurance companies could not charge extra for offering birth control as part of their policies.

So yes, they are now doing something different from what they did for a decade before this rule came into play. If it's a principle thing, why did they not complain earlier? Certainly a *few* Catholic institutions objected, but that did not reach the level of policy that now exists on the part of the Church.

Note that it's illegal to not provide prescription drugs based on the sex of the insured. That's what the rule enforces. That's perhaps a different reason than some have supposed.

I can't answer for the Church, Robear, and particularly it seems like I can't answer for American Catholicism. That said, I don't make a habit of presuming evil motives when more reasonable ones are on the table.

At this point, my main impression is that the Catholic Church in the US simply didn't make an issue of it at that point because it was convenient not to. Everyone keeps quiet and no one has to know that the Catholic Church is also partly paying for contraceptives. Now that it can't avoid the issue, it has to back the side it's committed itself to. In other words, it's behaving this way because you (and everyone else) is looking. It's more consistent to believe that the unobserved or unnoticed behavior is the true behavior, wouldn't you say?

Before you ask, no, I don't consider this all that abnormal. I expect everyone to behave this way. I suppose that makes me some kind of Dr. House cynic.

In other words, it's behaving this way because you (and everyone else) is looking. It's more consistent to believe that the unobserved or unnoticed behavior is the true behavior, wouldn't you say?

Before you ask, no, I don't consider this all that abnormal. I expect everyone to behave this way. I suppose that makes me some kind of Dr. House cynic.

That's an interesting observation. It's been my lifelong goal not to have differences between my public and private morals/behavior. That is, I don't do one thing around one group of people, and the opposite around another. I view that as morally weak (unless, for example, my life is in danger.) Probably that's one reason we view it so differently.

I was raised Calvinist, if that helps to explain it.

Robear:

Slightly different perspective. We have what's called "face," which I understand is not that universal of a thing in Western culture. It's not lying. I know I'm not saying the literal truth, and you know it, too. We both know exactly what the score is, but we pretend otherwise, often for the sake of getting along, or to spare people's feelings. Empathy is the heart of politeness and honesty. For instance, if my wife asks me whether I think she's fat, she knows I'm never going to say yes, and I know I'm never going to say yes. It's really "Do you love me?" worded differently. While "No" is not always the literally true answer to the literally worded question, it's the true answer (yes) to the true question.

In this case, the Church is signaling that, really, it doesn't care all that much; but if you ask it point-blank, it has to answer what it already said the answer was, because it's obligated to. It's the same way a politician sometimes has to toe the party line, even when he doesn't really see eye to eye with his party on that issue.

I get that, Larry. But the issue is not "oh, we're not *that* concerned about it until you push us", because the Church *chose* this moment to contest the issue, rather than when it initially arose. In other words, it was just as pushed in 2001 or so when Bush's rule came out, but *chose* to make a public issue of it last year instead of earlier. That smacks more of opportunism than of discretion.

"Honey, am I fat?" "Yeah, look, I've been meaning to tell you, you need to get to the gym." "But we've been married for ten years and you've never said I was fat!" "Yeah, but I've been thinking it all along, so get out there and work out, okay? Enough is enough."

That's, um, not going to help the marriage... It makes the husband look cruel, as if his face-saving for his wife is no longer meaningful to him...

That's what I mean. You guys place are inordinately preoccupied with "truth" and "lying" and calling each other names based on those things, but technically, everyone's a liar. Whoever isn't one is probably socially maladjusted. Everyone lies. I'm not seeing the point in calling certain people liars when everyone is. It's like saying "You're a farter!" People who stop farting tend to die from it.

What's important isn't truth, but trust. You can uphold a trust by lying, and break it by telling the truth. It's more important to BE true than to TELL true.

As for the motive, well, you know the circumstances best. I'm not really all that close to events. I'm not aware of any situational advantage now as opposed as to before, but that's just the thing - people can't argue both consistency and inconsistency at the same time. If you think the Church was always being consistent and was just waiting for the opportunity, why not oppose those who are criticizing it for being inconsistent? May I depend on you to supply arguments for your stated position?

Here's a thought: it doesn't really matter if the church is being hypocritical or not since its anti-contraceptive stance is wrong, backwards, and extremely harmful, especially in developing nations.

If they privately don't really care but came out against the law for insurance providers to provide contraception anyway that doesn't help things one bit. That just means they're willing to use contraceptive themselves but are totally fine with denying it to the neediest people under pretext of speaking for God.

If you think the Church was always being consistent and was just waiting for the opportunity, why not oppose those who are criticizing it for being inconsistent? May I depend on you to supply arguments for your stated position?

I really don't care to support them in either case. I believe that they are generally inconsistent, while claiming consistency, so I'm citing this as inconsistency in application of principles. But I'm not aware of a religion that behaves otherwise, so I certainly have an agenda.

Robear:

Would this not demonstrate, itself, an inconsistency in your critique? You only critique inconsistencies or weaknesses when they adhere to your unstated agenda, but don't consider such in the milieu of a cultural acceptance of those inconsistencies in people at large, or even in organizations at large (American government, for instance). Would this not constitute both a slanted presentation, and "taking advantage of an opportunity," as you've interpreted the Catholic Church to be doing in this instance? It's said that what we say about a certain topic reveals a lot more about us than it does about who we are praising or criticizing. This thread has been most interesting, and very informative.

By the by, the White House has sidestepped the issue entirely in exactly the way I thought it should. Under the new proposal, religious institutions would not be coerced to pay for birth control services or products they cannot endorse. Instead, insurance companies would provide the separate, free package, without any reference to the paying employer whatsoever. There are provisions for religious organizations that serve as their own insurers. The arrangement is too complicated for me to bother trying to understand, but it's supposed to deal with objections on that score.

It probably would, but then, I'm not responsible for guiding others in their beliefs, their lives or their laws. I do however criticize my own side as well, but I believe I'm less likely to do that, even being aware of the bias.

The White House solution is a pragmatic one, as you've described it, which means it won't satisfy Obama's opponents.

LarryC wrote:

That's what I mean. You guys place are inordinately preoccupied with "truth" and "lying" and calling each other names based on those things, but technically, everyone's a liar. Whoever isn't one is probably socially maladjusted. Everyone lies. I'm not seeing the point in calling certain people liars when everyone is. It's like saying "You're a farter!" People who stop farting tend to die from it.

What's important isn't truth, but trust. You can uphold a trust by lying, and break it by telling the truth. It's more important to BE true than to TELL true.

In your example, the problem isn't in the husband's response of "yes, you're fat", it's in the wife's question.

Trust is a two way street. Asking a simply yes/no question where the response is dictated by plain observation, and expecting a response that isn't based on the fact of that observation isn't communicating with trust in the forefront of your mind.

F'rinstance, my wife sometimes asks me if a new pair of pants make her ass look big. If they're unflattering, I'll tell her that they make her ass look bigger than it is. Fact is, she does have a big ass. She knows it, I know it. She also knows that the size of her ass has no impact on how much I want her to park that ass in my lap. How does she know that? Because I've been honest with her, and told her that in no uncertain terms.

You say that trust is more important than truth. I say it's difficult to build the former without the latter.

Jonman, when you say "big", exactly how big is it?

I f*cking hate "fat days." I am just getting the coffee started, and I know how my night will be when I hear "ARGH, I hate how fat I look!"

She and I both had some fancy fresh holidays, Thanksgiving, then the wedding, then the honeymoon, then Christmas, then a New Year party. In between we had no chances to re-calibrate and get into a fresh fitness regimen.

90 percent of the time I am supportive and nurturing. 10 percent I am sick of it and agree with her and say I am on my way to circuit court to file for divorce.

Ugh, men. Amirite?

clover wrote:

Ugh, men. Amirite?

Clover is Chelsea Handler, confirmed.

Gorilla.800.lbs wrote:

Jonman, when you say "big", exactly how big is it?

Bigger than too small, smaller than too big.

I don't have any DUIs though.

clover wrote:

I don't have any DUIs though.

I can help you with that.

Oops, I read that as IUDs.

She probably shouldn't have those, either.