"No" Means "No More Human Race"

Worried about global fertility decline? Blame the sexual harassment deficit!

A Russian advertising executive who sued her boss for sexual harassment lost her case after a judge ruled that employers were obliged to make passes at female staff to ensure the survival of the human race.

The judge said he threw out the case not through lack of evidence but because the employer had acted gallantly rather than criminally.

"If we had no sexual harassment we would have no children," the judge ruled.

According to a recent survey, 100 per cent of female professionals said they had been subjected to sexual harassment by their bosses, 32 per cent said they had had intercourse with them at least once and another seven per cent claimed to have been raped.

The correlation between high levels of sexual harassment and high fertility in developed countries is, um, not strong.

I argue that "periods of anxiety over 'race suicide' are rarely good times for women" here.

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  • Ska||

    So sexually harassing subordinates in Russia gets you laid one third of the time while not being recognized as a crime by the courts. Good to know the modern Russia is looking a lot like an episode of Mad Men.

  • ||

    "Have sex with me if you want your race to live."

    You mean that's not a panty stripper anymore? Glad I'm married and off the singles scene.

    ("So are we!" says women. Har har.)

  • ||

    "In Russia, harassment sexuals you!"

    /just getting it out of the way

  • ||

    "If we had no sexual harassment we would have no children," the judge ruled.

    Tells me way more than I wanted to know about his home life.

  • Naga Sadow||

    Being a beauracrat in Russia gets you laid a third of the time? Russian society gets moved up a few notches in my book.

  • Sandy||

    a judge ruled that employers were obliged to make passes at female staff to ensure the survival of the human race.


    ...with the corollary that all sex must therefore be for procreation so the boss has to do a dime because he asked for a handjob instead of unprotected sex.

  • Naga Sadow||

    R C Dean,

    The judge meant the children that he knows of . . .

  • Warty||

    Her: No!
    Him: No means yes.
    Her: Yes!
    Him: Whaddaya mean, no?!

    Was that from one of the Naked Guns? My brain doesn't remember anymore.

  • ||

    100 per cent of female professionals said they had been subjected to sexual harassment by their bosses

    I'm gonna go out on a limb here and call bullshit. If they had ended the sentence at "harassment", I'd be skeptical, but it would certainly be possible. But this number by bosses is either made up or has a sample size of 2.

  • Naga Sadow||

    Sexual harassment . . . it's for the children!

  • ||

    Or Russia is the greatest place in the world to be a manager.

  • Episiarch||

    All Russian women who have been sexually harassed should be given expedited visas to the US. This is a win for them, and a win for us since the hotter the woman, the more she would be harassed.

    I think this is something both parties can get behind (ahem).

  • anarch||

    Too many thread winners, sorry.

  • ||

    I think this is something both parties can get behind (ahem).

    Are you talking about pegging again?

  • ||

    I wonder if the suit would have come out the same way if the alleged harasser in question had been her subordinate.

  • Craig\'s List Casualty||

    if the alleged harasser in question had been her subordinate.



    Not going there again!

  • Tim||

    So in Russia, if you have 12 female direct reports, you get to have sex with 4 of them?

    [Looks up airline schedules to Moscow]

  • ed||

    an episode of Mad Men

    "Mad Men" takes place in 1960. Sexual harassment wasn't invented till the 70s.

  • ||

    100 per cent of female professionals said they had been subjected to sexual harassment by their bosses

    Only believable if "Want to go on a date?" counts as sexual harassment. No, actually not even then. Maybe if "Hello" or "Get to work" counts. Or whatever those are in Russian.

  • Seanfucious||

    This is one of the most amazing posts ever written. Now, where's my beer?

  • Ska||

    "Mad Men" takes place in 1960. Sexual harassment wasn't invented till the 70s.


    And in Russia sexual harassment doesn't mean anything, which was kind of my point.

  • ||

    Human rights activists say that Russian women remain second-class citizens and are subjected to some of the highest levels of domestic abuse in the world.


    Wow. Yeah. Funny. So many...um...threadwinners (lifelosers) here.


    Some of you really need to kill yourselves. Do the worldwide gene pool a favor.

  • ktc2||

    Wow, this thead is full of win.

    Sexual harrassment has become so vague and nebulous it's pretty much anything, even just polite banter, in some places.

    "Hi! You look nice today."

    "Hey, you want to get a beer after work?"

  • ev||

    this is just batshit insane

    im going to start 'researching' and see if this only works for the ruskies

  • kinnath||

    100 per cent of female professionals said they had been subjected to sexual harassment by their bosses

    I'm gonna go out on a limb here and call bullshit.


    Have you been to Russia?

    The only thing more blatant than sexism in Russia is racism.

  • ||

    Yesterday, on the weekend open thread, I mockingly made a similar argument (rape is "needed" to combat declining fertility rates), totally tongue-in-cheek, to illustrate the ludicrous justifications that can be made for immoral acts using allegedly utilitarian grounds.

    Now I find someone beat me to the punch, and was fucking serious about it.

    Wow. Just wow.

  • ||

    I thought sexual harassment was already defined by SNL.

    Sounds like Russia needs feminism. Can we send them some of ours? Especially when they fill up blog space complaining about how oppressed they are by ads that ran 10 years before most of them were born?

    By the way, keep sending the entertaining emails to my linked address about how unfair I am to feministing. It's hilarious.

  • Zubon||

    100% is not incredible. Anyone above you in the chain of command (boss's boss is still your boss), at any time in your career, in a country where a judge goes on record with that. Those without at least one questionable episode could amount to a rounding error under those conditions.

  • ||

    Wow. Yeah. Funny. So many...um...threadwinners (lifelosers) here.


    Some of you really need to kill yourselves. Do the worldwide gene pool a favor.


    Remember, folks, if you don't express a certain level of Acceptable Outrage, that means you're condoning/encouraging misogynistic behavior.

    Let that be your Patented Smacky Life Lesson for the day.

  • ||

    Remember, folks, if you don't express a certain level of Acceptable Outrage, that means you're condoning/encouraging misogynistic behavior.

    Wrong! Big difference between not expressing outrage, and making fun of serious harassment. Smacky was calling folks out, deservedly so, on the latter.

  • ||

    Not quite, Tonio. Roll tape!:

    Human rights activists say that Russian women remain second-class citizens and are subjected to some of the highest levels of domestic abuse in the world.

    So, pray tell, tonio, what that has to do with sexual harassment in the workplace again?

    of course there's going to be a certain subset of individuals who are skeptical of the magnitude of the issue: you can thank all of the hypersensitive whiners in America (male and female both, mind you) for crying "Wolf" too many times.

  • ||

    So in Russia, if you have 12 female direct reports, you get to have sex with 4 of them?

    Not necessarily. A more likely scenario is that a third of the women work for bosses who have sex with all their female employees, while the other bosses' harassment is fruitless, so to speak.

  • Neu Mejican||

    Remember, folks, if you don't express a certain level of Acceptable Outrage, that means you're condoning/encouraging misogynistic behavior.

    Depends upon what you mean by "Acceptable Outrage" of course, but learning that silent complicity in the bad behavior of others is the same thing as condoning/encouraging that behavior is not by any means a bad lesson to learn at some point on your road to adulthood.

    Humor regarding that bad behavior can potentially be one step further towards active encouragement, but also has the potential to discourage that behavior. It will depend on the nature of the humor. It seems both types of humor are on display in the thread above.

    Neither type is displayed by TAO, of course.

  • Neu Mejican||

    So, pray tell, tonio, what that has to do with sexual harassment in the workplace again?

    I will ask this question right back to TAO.

    Do you not see the direct line between abuse in the home and abuse in the workplace?

    Do you not get the idea that in a society that sees it as okay to abuse your wife/daughter, it is a pretty short road to "it's okay to abuse my female employee" ?

    Really? You think these are separate issues?

    hypersensitive whiners in America

    Are those the ones that do not demonstrate TAO Acceptable Toughness?

    Is that our TAO patented Life Lesson of the day?

  • Neu Mejican||

    As for the judge:

    The mating ritual of the Russian Male of Position...kinda reminds me of the way male Ducks get laid.

  • ||

    sure Neu, whatever you feel like reading into it is just fine by me.

    because I don't see anything terribly productive and healthy about telling people to shuffle off this mortal coil for humor in America about something that happened in Russia, over which none of us have control.

    Are those the ones that do not demonstrate TAO Acceptable Toughness?

    nope. those would be the ones who overdid it on the witch hunt for sexual harassment in the workplace and turned the term into a national punchline. You can thank them for crying wolf so many times that not a lot of people take it very seriously.

  • ||

    as a matter of fact, I didn't see what joke it was that prompted smacky's hysterical cries for suicide.

    Can somebody point it out to me, please?

  • MJ||

    Adama: [sees Billy flirting with Dualla] They'd better start having babies.

    Saul Tigh: Is that an order?

    Adama: It may be before too long.

  • Neu Mejican||

    TAO,

    Can somebody point it out to me, please?"

    ktc2 | August 4, 2008, 2:47pm |

    whatever you feel like reading into it is just fine by me

    So, why not address the direct questions then?

    those would be the ones who overdid it on the witch hunt for sexual harassment in the workplace

    "Overdid" being operationally defined as?????

  • MJ||

    I'm all against senior staff using a position of authority to coerce younger staff into physical releationships. On the other hand I have seen enough where younger women will flirt with co-workers (even older ones) that most people don't see a problem in dating people they run into most every week. The line between sexual harassment and normal sexual interaction can be very thin.

  • The Hanky Panky Report||

    Sexual harassment laws in the country are completely out of control. Let's face it, men and women are sexual creatures and, as we at The Hanky Panky Report can attest, things happen when they get together. This has been going on througout the world for as long as men and women have been working together. In most of the world, the sexual dynamic between men and women is understood to be part of life and unwanted sexual advances are met with a polite "no, thank you." In this country, they are frequently met with a lawsuit.
    No one should be made to feel that their job may be threatened if they don't sleep with the boss. There are a number of problems with the American system, however. First, is the systemic presumption that almost any sexual advance, or sexually themed joke or conversation is offensive and therefore actionable. Second, the rampant gender discrimination pursuant to which complaints by females are presumed credible whereas complaints by males are considered whining, to the extent they are ever raised.
    The threat of being sued for sexual harassment has resulted in massive expenditures at corporations for sexual harassment sensitivity training, as well as settling thousands of bogus claims. The Hanky Panky Report is aware of at least one executive (an attractive middle aged male) who felt compelled to enact drastic measures to ensure that he would not find himself being sued including installing video cameras in the office, keeping interior office windows covered with blinds and never attending a meeting with a female employee alone.
    These measures may seem paranoid to some, but considering the history of these allegations, they may well be sensible and even advisable. As the saying goes, you're not paranoid if they really are out to get you.
    A recent case decided by the New Jersey Supreme Court offers some hope that we may at last have seen the limits to which the law will accommodate the often absurd and baseless claims alleging sexual harassment. The Court today issued a ruling in a case in which two female students at the Princeton Theological Seminary sued the seminary for sexual harassment after a resident of the seminary (who was not an employee or student) asked the two out on dates in 1999 and 2000. The girls informed the seminary of the man's conduct and requested the school stop it. In response, the seminary advised the women that it had no legal authority stop the man's behavior since he was not affiliated with the seminary (he simply rented a publicly available apartment from the seminary) and advised the women to contact the police, if necessary. Three years later, the women sued the seminary claiming that it should have taken more action to ensure the man did not ask them out again.
    The New Jersey Supreme Court ruled for the seminary, holding that the women "cannot rely on the prospect of a money damages award from the Seminary to replace their own obligation to simply tell (the man) that they had no interest in him romantically or even as a casual acquaintance."
    It is sad that our state's court system was needlessly burdened for five years with such a frivolous lawsuit. It is high time that the law formally recognize what we should all inherently know to be true - that sex happens, it is a natural (and typically enjoyable) part of life, and it is neither just, nor efficient to expect our schools, employers, or our states to "protect" our citizens from normal social encounters with our fellow human beings simply because some citizens lack appropriate social skills and feel uncomfortable.

  • ||

    So, why not address the direct questions then?

    When did you stop beating your wife? Your questions weren't valid in any sense other than an attempt to score points.

    Am I to presume that you're citing ktc2's 2:47 comment as the one that justifies hysterical rhetoric about killing oneself for failing to be properly empathetic? This is your evidence?:


    Sexual harrassment has become so vague and nebulous it's pretty much anything, even just polite banter, in some places.

    "Hi! You look nice today."

    "Hey, you want to get a beer after work?"


    A general observation about the overreach?

    Quit playing around, Neu. You're smarter than that...if you see that general observation as watch and warrant to call for someone to (rhetorically, I know)...I cannot help you.

    "Overdid" being operationally defined as?????

    Operationally defined as failing to pick battles. Look at the insanity that is any government-office or corporate (they usually match) sexual harassment policy. I'm not going to lead you by the nose, but here's a hint: all of them "operate" on a complainant-based definition of harassment.

  • ||

    learning that silent complicity in the bad behavior of others is the same thing as condoning/encouraging that behavior is not by any means a bad lesson to learn at some point on your road to adulthood.

    Nonsense. This attitude lies behind every nanny state impulse we decry at this site. Sometimes the best way of penalize bad behavior is to ignore it and give the boor enough rope to socially hang himself.

    And even in situations where silence is not as good a path to take as condemnation, it's never the same as encouragement.

  • ||

    it's never the same as encouragement.

    That is true, but I can't help but think of the people I have met at work for whom silence has no meaning and is tantamount to saying "please continue to stand in the doorway of my office and speak loudly about your favorite tentacle-rape movies".

  • Neu Mejican||

    Nonsense. This attitude lies behind every nanny state impulse we decry at this site.

    Only to the extent that people's silent complicity in the moment leads to a general sense that the problem is being ignored and "something must be done."

    Government gets involved in problems to the extent that problems are not addressed by individuals.

    I will note that the important word here is "problems." Most arguments revolve around what counts as a problem. An individual's silence regarding a particular behavior is, in effect, a vote that the behavior is not a problem. If the behavior is coercive, the victims may look to the government for redress when they do not get assistance from those around them.

    Sometimes the best way of penalize bad behavior is to ignore it and give the boor enough rope to socially hang himself.

    You are just passing the buck in this case. "Socially hanging himself" begins when silent complicity ends.

    And even in situations where silence is not as good a path to take as condemnation, it's never the same as encouragement.

    I would disagree. People are encouraged to continue a certain behavior as much by lack of resistance as they are by any other factor. Social interactions are largely modulated by attempts to find other people's barriers. You test the situation, see if there is resistance, and react to the reaction you get. If the reaction you get is not actively signaling that you have crossed a line, that reaction encourages the behavior.

  • Neu Mejican||

    TAO,

    Your questions weren't valid in any sense other than an attempt to score points.

    Let's review.

    TAO says

    Human rights activists say that Russian women remain second-class citizens and are subjected to some of the highest levels of domestic abuse in the world.

    So, pray tell, tonio, what that has to do with sexual harassment in the workplace again?


    This implies that there are important distinctions between sexual harassment in the work place, women being seen as second class citizens, and domestic abuse. This implies that the comment was tangential to a discussion of sexual harassment.

    I ask if you really believed that.

    Really? You think these are separate issues?

    Not a gotcha, but a question.

    A general observation about the overreach?

    Nicely done edit of the comment.
    It ignores only one line in the post which just happens to be the line that Smacky reacted to.

    Disingenuous much?

  • ||

    NM,

    So if a fundamentalist Christian is sitting in a restaurant, and two guys are making out in the next booth, he must voice a complaint about their behavior? Otherwise, he is encouraging it, and must not think homosexual activity is a problem. Do you see how the rule you propose is utterly incompatible with the live-and-let-live attitude that must permeate a culturally diverse free society?

    And you've never seen a person get socially punished for bad behavior without anyone else uttering a word of condemnation? Heck, I see that every day.

  • Neu Mejican||

    Occam's Toothbrush,

    You are correct, the Christian fundamentalist that sits quietly while two guys are making out is saying that he values "thou shall not judge" more than any sanction against homosexual behavior. There is nothing inconsistent with what I said in your example.

    As for being incompatible with the "live and let live" principle, that is one of the ways we determine what is a problem versus what is simply the diversity of human behavior. If the behavior rises to the point where objection to it overrides the live and let live principle, then it is probably a problem.

    Remember, we are talking about silent complicity in coercive behavior, not consensual behavior.

    And you've never seen a person get socially punished for bad behavior without anyone else uttering a word of condemnation? Heck, I see that every day.

    Actively ignoring/denying social overtures is not the same thing as silent complicity in someone's behavior towards another.

    Shunning is an active condemnation, words are not the only way to send messages.

  • ||

    the Christian fundamentalist that sits quietly while two guys are making out is saying that he values "thou shall not judge" more than any sanction against homosexual behavior.

    Not necessarily. Said fundamentalist very likely has silently judged them to be wicked sinners on a headlong journey to hell, but at the same time thinks making a scene out of it is not likely to be helpful. Such a case is very possible, and utterly contradicts your assertions.

    Shunning is an active condemnation, words are not the only way to send messages.

    How, as an outside observer, do you distinguish silent message-sending from silent complicity? It seems you're watering down your bold statements to comport with reality, which I can't encourage but will choose to remain silent about.

  • Neu Mejican||

    Occam's,

    but at the same time thinks making a scene out of it is not likely to be helpful

    Okay, so rather than valuing "thou shall not judge" s/he is making a utilitarian calculation that speaking up is not worth it.

    Such a case is very possible, and utterly contradicts your assertions.

    No it doesn't. Remaining silent will encourage the couple by sending a message that no one cares enough about their behavior (rightly, imho) for there to be social consequences.

    Again, we are talking about silent complicity in coercive behavior, which makes your example fairly inapt to the topic, but the principle that lack of discouragement=encouragement still holds in its practical effect.

    How, as an outside observer, do you distinguish silent message-sending from silent complicity?

    Outside observers have a tough time accurately interpreting messages between communication partners even when they are verbal communication, so I would say you you do it very carefully. So, if you are the victim of coercive behavior and want help, you should make it clear that you feel the behavior is inappropriate and unwanted. If you do so and now one comes to your assistance (out of fear for their job, perhaps), you may feel the need to appeal to a higher authority. The government may represent such an authority. The businesses that do not address this issue on their own invite government intervention into the situation. Sadly, Russian women may find that the government is not only silently complicit in the behavior, but actively promoting the behavior.

    It seems you're watering down your bold statements to comport with reality, which I can't encourage but will choose to remain silent about.

    We don't have much water in New Mexico, I don't waste it on statements. My position hasn't moved an inch as I have elaborated it.

  • Neu Mejican||

    THPR,

    and it is neither just, nor efficient to expect our schools, employers, or our states to "protect" our citizens from normal social encounters with our fellow human beings simply because some citizens lack appropriate social skills and feel uncomfortable.

    Agreed.
    How is that relevant to the posting above?
    I will point out that the judge made a statement including the word "harassment," which by definition places the behavior being discussed outside the realm of "normal social encounter." I am assuming you recognize the usage of "normal" here to be in the sense of "acceptable" rather than "common."

    Yes, we should not be silently complicit when baseless claims are made against people for innocent behavior. Such behavior deserves scorn. It is not, however, as common. You seem to be making a mountain out of a mole-hill.

  • Francis||

    All I have to say, is after this thread, nobody better tell me to shut the heck up again!

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