& OTHER GEAR
An Erotic Novel
How we lost the right to feel.
Go to the beach.
Literary Love Affair
The Business Function
Go directly to "Why Business Loves
BECAUSE OF the superstition
that ruthlessly aggressive competition is the primary and necessary
factor for success, the businessman sees himself in constant warfare
for dominance of the worker. Workers are set one against another
as a routine policy, with labor unions a main target. Racism and
sexism are deliberate tactics in the war against organization. The
fundamental strategy is to dominate the worker at all costs.
It was more important for
the Reagan administration to destroy the air controllers union
than to assure safe operations, a bizarre move that attacked its
most important constituency, as business people are the most stable
air travel customers.
In the wake of the
1994 Democratic loss of both houses of Congress, some analysts suggested
that one factor was the continuing loss of earning power by men.
It is a fact that mens wages have fallen as a direct result
of the entry of more and more women into the labor market. To the
extent that the Democrats are seen as the party of women and feminists,
they lose votes not only from the Religious Right, but also from
the broad masses of men who perceive themselves to be at a competitive
disadvantage with women.
On closer inspection,
it is ironic that the Democrats should bear the burden of this loss,
as the feminist agenda advanced by Ms. was an embarrassing break
with feminist history, and, with the exception of equal pay for
equal work, served the interests of the business community to the
detriment of the labor unions. In this sense, feminism helps Republicans,
the party of business, far more than it does the Democrats, the
party of labor. The Republicans have the advantage of being able
to benefit from the economics of the trend as well as the resentment
In some cases, the
feminist agenda was exactly the same as the Reagan agenda. They
were both against Playboy, for example. Meese isolated
it as pornography to silence a liberal bastion. Other
than the glorification of the cheesecake image of female body, however,
the Playboy Philosophy shared many feminist values. Despite
the belief that Playboy presented women as sex-objects, it was the
first mass market magazine in the world that taught men to see women
as companions and friends rather than merely as wives and lovers.
It pioneered the acceptance of women as intellectual and economic
equals. No magazine did more for sexual education, nor for making
men understand that a womans failure to achieve sexual satisfaction
was not a symptom of frigidity but more likely a result of his inept
technique. Today, when newspapers routinely discuss the techniques
of oral sex, it is easy to forget how advanced the Playboy Advisor
was in, say, 1964.
A young English woman
vehemently told me, Playboy turned women into slot
machines. I replied, It was better than being washing
machines. It also wasnt even true. Playboy
encouraged women to get out of the household slave role, to become
economically self-sufficient, to use birth control pills, to have
sex before marriage, to masturbate, to expect oral gratification
from a man, among other then-shameful caresses. The list could go
on and on. I found that most of the criticism of Playboy
came from people who never read it, both male and female. They just
looked at the pictures and accused everyone else of doing the same.
The hostility of the
feminist movement has been so irrational (turning down the offer
of a $500,000 grant from the Playboy Foundation to help fight the
anti-abortion movement, for example) that I feel it was generated
by government agents. This may sound quite paranoiac, but it is
a well-known fact that Gloria Steinem worked for the CIA during
the Sixties. This charge came from within the feminist movement
and was raised publicly by the Redstockings in a press release sent
out in 1976. It was also covered in feminist newsletters, and was
edited out of a collection of feminist writings published by Random
House. The book was delayed almost two years while they fought about
Gloria Steinem admitted
that she worked for a CIA front during the Sixties. She organized
intellectuals on both sides of the Atlantic and got them to attend
so-called Social Democratic conferences, which were designed to
counter Communist influence by presenting a respectable liberal
alternative. Shes claimed that she was an unwitting dupe.
Gloria surfaced in New York out of nowhere and went around interviewing
writers and worming her way into the New York literary scene. Bruce
Jay Friedman introduced me to her and I took her to a freeloading
lunch at Georges IV set up by their press agent. She was wearing
a magnificent black mink coat and was just fascinated by me. She
told me that she felt she was really on the inside now because in
reading a blind item about me that Bruce had inserted in a Herald-Tribune
article she knew to whom it referred.
Everything was just
great until the bill arrived. The waiter didnt know that it
was a freebie and I had to go through the agonizingly embarrassing
experience of straightening this out in front of Gloria. I believe
that she was then television comic Milt Kamens girl friend
and Im sure I never had a chance. Talk about great-looking,
though, and smart! Now if only all that genius had been devoted
to legitimate causes such as exterminating yapping dogs
background was obscured by various self-inventions that were eventually
exposed in Time. Coupled with multi-millionaire publisher and real
estate magnate Mortimer Zuckerman, she lied to Vanity Fair
about his financial aid for Ms. magazine. Not a penny came
from Mortimer, Gloria said. Columnist Liz Smith revealed that Zuckerman
had put $1.2 million into a rescue attempt and sent his executives
to help as well.
There has never been
an adequate explanation of the original funding for Ms.,
nor for the rapid acceptance of feminist propaganda by the mass
media in the early Seventies. No radical movement has ever spread
with the speed of feminism, which went from little or no organization
and acceptance to total domination in less than two years. Obviously,
it did touch very deep frustrations in American women, but it is
difficult to avoid the suspicion that the existing movement was
manipulated very effectively to channel these frustrations to the
benefit of the business community and the detriment of women, children,
men and families.
Why business loves women
The kind of feminism
sponsored by Gloria Steinem set men against women in a vicious battle
for jobs. Although the business community fought equal pay for equal
work, it benefited from the entry of women into the labor market:
Women work for
They are more
docile and less likely to deviate from company policies.
Women are less
likely to join labor unions.
the size of the labor pool, they created more competition for
jobs and enabled employers to make better deals.
families, one person is more likely to be willing to work part-time
or as a temporary, which employers prefer as it tends to decrease
various labor costs, including fringe benefits.
of the family reduces the strength of the individual worker
by depriving him or her of a base independent of the company.
away from their mothers at an early age tends to increase their
anxiety levels and results in higher rates of tension-relieving
consumption as they grow up.
The loss of
womens household services increases purchases of various
forms of fast foods, which have higher profit levels than home-cooked
are associated with increased purchases of hard goods. This
seems ridiculous but it is a well-documented fact, which I first
saw in the Scientific American Energy special issue
There is a startling
congruence in priorities of NOW and the business community: children
are at the bottom, or do not exist except as proto-consumer/worker.
Children were Number 14 on the famed NOW agenda of fifteen priorities.
Other analysts commented that the Democratic loss reflected a Populist
trend in American politics. Any attempt to re-capture the high ground
here presents the Democrats with a dilemma pitting its feminist
allies against the realities of American life. The issue is family
values. The feminist denial of the special role of the mother and
her need to be sheltered from the brutalities of the work place
does great damage to family values. It also makes it impossible
for the Democrats to respond to the deeply felt anguish of mothers
and fathers who must sacrifice their childrens well-being
in order to feed, clothe and house them.
Thus, what was originally
mostly a lower class problem has become one that crosses all class
boundaries. We arent all Hillary Clintons, are we? For most
of us, the day care center is a new kind of hell that separates
us from our children. To the extent that feminists are blamed for
this, the Democrats lose votes. Thus, the Presidents brilliant
and attractive wife contributed to his partys defeat, because
although she may very well represent the aspirations of many women,
she also is the symbol of their failure.
The results speak for
themselves. The techniques are quite transparent and obvious once
you know where to look. Create false leaders. Erase existing culture.
Substitute new values. Sell, sell, sell. Feminism is no different
from any of the other campaigns. The world according to Virginia
Slims is different from the world according to Adolf Hitler in content,
but the aim is the same: to make sure that all energy belongs to
the state -- whether the state is National Socialism or Free Enterprise.
Cigarettes or gas chambers -- what does it matter? -- the end is
the same. Work will make you free. And dead. And someone else will
American Interfaith Non-Violent (I hope) Taliban Movement considers Gordon
Inkeles' work too shocking for your sensitive eyes.
Busted Book in Santa Barbara
surrender at last to performance art.
ME ABOUT THIS
the Nuclear Option is Really
Satire will flourish in the one-party state.
for the Humor Impaired?
You, too, can make jokes!
not a joke.
but it's a