Monday, January 11, 2010

Estonian Women Lose Gender War

Estonia ranks first in the EU in terms of pay differences between genders (women earn 30% less in Estonia versus a 17% EU average), and the Ministry of Social Affairs plans to combat the problem with a campaign to promote equal remuneration. 1.3 million kroons will be spent on a media campaign to draw attention to the subject featuring the image of a sweaty woman chained to a plow while a trio of men enjoy champagne and strawberries in the background.
Not all members of government believe the pay difference is a problem. "Men are superior to women," said Minister of Defense Jaak Aaviksoo. "For one thing, they can urinate from a speeding car." Private industry, those responsible for much of the pay gap, have said they are loyal only to market forces. "If a woman thinks she deserves equal pay just because she shows up on time every day, works a full shift, and produces more widgets than a man," said Karl Kartulinina, manager of a high tech factory in Tallinn's Jüri office park, "then she's got another thing coming. But can she drink three pints at lunch with me and still be standing to operate the lathe? That's why Estonian men are paid what they're paid."

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