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The Social Media Shaming of Pax Dickinson

The social media outrage wheel keeps spinning

Public shaming and professional retaliation, or even destruction, for unpopular speech seems to have become a regular feature of life—but also a subject of growing concern. Most notably, in the past month, scientists, politicians, and others have rallied to the defense of British biochemist and Nobel laureate Sir Tim Hunt, whose ill-conceived joke about women in science at a conference sparked a Twitter storm and ended his academic career. The pitfalls of social media shaming were recently explored by British journalist Jon Ronson in the acclaimed book "So You’ve Been Publicly Shamed," which examines such notorious incidents as the Twitter mobbing of public relations rep Justine Sacco in December 2013 over a racially insensitive joke.

But before Hunt, before Sacco, before the ouster of Mozilla CEO Brendan Eich over his opposition to same-sex marriage, there was another drama of career-killing Internet outrage: the undoing of Business Insider Chief Technology Officer Pax Dickinson. It is a story that raises troubling questions about speech and consequences.

Unlike Sacco or Hunt, ruined by a single misinterpreted moment of levity—or Eich, penalized for what had been only recently a mainstream viewpoint—Dickinson had a long history of outrageous Twitter comments that were a mix of deliberate provocation and controversial opinions. His precipitous downfall began when those tweets caught the attention of a writer for Valleywag/Gawker, who described Dickinson as "your new tech bro nightmare."

I followed the Dickinson debacle in September 2013. While I shared his critical view of feminism in tech, which often seems to be less about advancing women than fostering grievance, dispatches from the field made Dickinson sound like a genuine male chauvinist. (One of his much-quoted tweets said, "Tech managers spend as much time worrying about how to hire talented female developers as they do worrying about how to hire a unicorn," which seems to imply that female talent is mythical.) While such opinions certainly shouldn’t be punished or censored by the government, there are certainly good reasons for a company not to want a top executive who publicly voices them—from bad public relations to potential discrimination suits.

I was, therefore, somewhat wary at first when another journalist contacted me with an offer to speak to Dickinson for a possible feature on his professional exile. After several email exchanges, I ended up meeting with him for a long interview at his New Jersey home and speaking to several women who had worked with him in the past. I came away convinced that there was much more to this story than the mainstream media narrative of a sexist "tech bro" getting his comeuppance. Even if Dickinson was in part the victim of his own recklessness, what happened to him was another chapter in the annals of self-righteous online outrage that mobs first and asks questions later.

A lifelong computer geek who dropped out of college after one year to work for his father’s business, taught himself Web development, and rose from help desk technician to highly sought-after tech industry executive, Dickinson, now 42, freely admits that he has always enjoyed being "somewhat trolly" in social media—both expressing strong opinions and being deliberately provocative. In part, this was also related to the fact that for a long time, his following was limited to a small circle of people who knew him and were familiar with his style.

Some of the comments that would later get Dickinson branded sexist and racist were clearly meant as provocative humor, and sometimes arguably as mockery of sexism and racism.  One particularly infamous July 2010 tweet—"In Passion Of The Christ 2, Jesus gets raped by a pack of n*****s. It's his own fault for dressing like a whore though"—was spoofing the infamous Mel Gibson phone rant in which he used similar language to tell his girlfriend it would be her fault if she were raped.  (That context was forgotten more than three years later when the tweet was publicized.) "It didn’t even get many retweets or make a splash," says Dickinson. "I had 50 followers. Was it edgy? Of course. But everyone knew what it was about."

Other tweets that came back to haunt Dickinson do reflect genuinely-held contrarian views—such as this one from June 2009, more than a year before the start of his time at Business Insider: "Women's suffrage and individual freedom are incompatible. How's that for an unpopular truth?" That’s a reference to the argument, made by some conservatives and libertarians, that female voting leads to government expansion because women favor more activist government. Does Dickinson stand by this statement? Sort of—with a disclaimer: "Saying that I’m against women voting is kind of trolling, because I’m against anyone voting." (For the record, he says he doesn’t vote.) Dickinson, who describes his views as "libertarianish" but thinks libertarians "venerate democracy a little too much," is of the opinion that democracy itself is probably incompatible with freedom since it allows majorities to vote themselves more benefits until the system breaks down. He does believe that the female vote is likely to make the problem worse because women tend to be more safety-minded than men; but he’s not particularly keen on the male popular vote, either.

Whatever one may think of these views, they did not attract attention until the fall of 2013, when Dickinson found himself in a Twitter war over feminism in the tech industry. This was not, he stresses, about equal opportunity for women, but about a wave of censorious overreaction to real or perceived sexist slights. Earlier that year, Dickinson had been troubled by the scandal known as "Donglegate," in which tech specialist and blogger Adria Richards tweeted to complain about two men exchanging innocuous, slightly off-color jokes behind her at a conference—costing one of the culprits his job. In September 2013, he criticized the outrage over "Titstare," a mobile app presented as a joke at a San Francisco tech conference (its purpose was for men to take photos of themselves staring at cleavage). Dickinson argued that while the app was crass and inappropriate, to call it misogynist was to trivialize the term.  Soon he found himself tangling with feminists and tweeting, "Feminism in tech remains the champion topic for my block list. My finger is getting tired." Soon enough, Valleywag’s Nitasha Tiku was on his trail, going back through his Twitter timeline, and his fate was sealed.

Dickinson insists that he is no enemy of women in the tech industry: "Any tech manager I’ve ever known who’s hiring people is so desperate for good talent—you do not care if that good talent is male or female or any color of the rainbow." That, he says, was the point of his "hiring a unicorn" tweet: not that talented female developers are mythical, but that a manager doesn’t give any thought to gender because any good talent is rare enough. He also points out that he had no problem reporting to a woman—his boss at Business Insider was CEO Julie Hansen, with whom he got along just fine until the Twitter outrage machine caught up with him—and that many women had no problem working for him or with him.

These would be obviously self-serving claims if I had not spoken to several women who tell the same story. "I never saw him treat women any differently than men," says Dina Ledvina, formerly a quality assurance engineer at Business Insider—a company that she says always had a female-friendly environment. "Sophie," another female tech professional who asked to remain anonymous, says that Dickinson was not only supportive of her work but helpful and understanding when she needed flexible arrangements for family reasons. She wrote to me that she "felt bad for Pax" when watching the media storm: "It’s hard to see your friend being misrepresented."

And then there’s Elissa Shevinsky, Dickinson’s former partner in a start-up called Glimpse, a project to build an app that protects the privacy of online conversations. Shevinsky had met Dickinson in 2012, about a year before his notoriety. "Despite his tweets, Pax evaluates everyone as an individual. He never took me less seriously because I was a woman," she told me in an email. "Pax isn’t afraid of strong women. He believed in me so hard, and it was very easy to believe in what we could do together."

It is a somewhat unlikely testimonial—considering that the Titstare incident, which precipitated Dickinson’s conflict with feminists online, also served as Shevinsky’s feminist epiphany. After the scandal, she left Glimpse. Then, in the spring of 2014, she came back as CEO and agreed to partner with Dickinson once again; he agreed to write a public letter of apology.

The apology was enough for Shevinsky—but not for the industry, which still views Dickinson as too toxic to touch. Eventually, he chose to leave Glimpse after realizing that his presence was a major obstacle for Shevinsky in getting venture capital. To this day, he remains essentially unemployable. He says he has received about a dozen enthusiastic job offers that quickly fizzled after he informed his would-be employers of his 15 minutes of infamy. He has worked on several freelance projects that he cannot put on his resume because the companies that hired him don’t want it known that he worked for them. He and his wife, Kelly, currently depend primarily on her small income from a home-based business selling fine china.

"Is it fair that Business Insider fired me? Sure," says Dickinson. "I made the company look bad. Having those libertarian sympathies, I don’t think anyone should have to employ someone they don’t want to employ. But I think being blacklisted and pressure being put on any company that might consider hiring me is a much different issue."

Some influential figures who champion progressive causes in the tech industry have openly encouraged the blacklisting. Shortly after Dickinson’s downfall, technologist and blogger Anil Dash wrote, "If you're a venture capitalist, and you invest in Pax's startup without a profound, meaningful and years-long demonstration of responsibility from Pax beforehand, you're complicit in extending the tech industry's awful track record of exclusion, and it's unacceptable."

Shevinsky strongly disagrees. "I worry about efforts to ostracize people from the community," she wrote to me. "What does it mean if we try to take the right to work away from people with opinions that we find dangerous?"

Dickinson makes the same point in his own still-contrarian, bloodied-but-unbowed style. "I’m very used to working with people who have politics that I find reprehensible," he says. "I mean, I find everyone’s politics reprehensible, and I don’t mind working with them or being friends with them. I’m used to that. It seems other people aren’t."

Ensuring that women and minority groups are not excluded from workplace opportunities is a worthy goal.  But the exclusion of people guilty of holding unpopular views is still exclusion—and that’s a trend now spreading to far more innocuous forms of thought-crime than Dickinson’s provocative tweets. After linking to a piece about the Tim Hunt debacle, Dickinson says he received a message from a fellow software developer. It said, "You were the canary in the coal mine in so many ways."

This article originally appeared at RealClearPolitics.

Photo Credit: Twitter

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  • ||

    which seems to imply that female talent is mythical.

    It's good that you didn't fall into the trap of grievance thinking.

    Sheesh.

  • sarcasmic||

    Who?

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    My first thought as well.

    I then appended a "cares?" after it.

  • SkippyTheMarine||

    I can't stand the gawker sites for their self-righteous crusading against...what? Non-conformity? Also, when I clicked on the valleywag link, and the top comment was Sam Biddle's, I knew it was a hit piece, because that guy hates anyone who isn't fully aligned with progressive madness.

  • WoodchipperFocus(ed)||

    Intolerance (as defined by a screaming mob) will NOT be tolerated.

  • Tommy_Grand||

    I agree that the banshee SJW's are a plague, but I'm not too sympathetic regarding this victim.

    Cathy said: “One particularly infamous July 2010 tweet—"In Passion Of The Christ 2, Jesus gets raped by a pack of n*****s. It's his own fault for dressing like a whore though"—was spoofing the infamous Mel Gibson phone rant in which he used similar language to tell his girlfriend it would be her fault if she were raped. (That context was forgotten more than three years later when the tweet was publicized.) "It didn’t even get many retweets or make a splash," says Dickinson. "I had 50 followers. Was it edgy? Of course. But everyone knew what it was about."

    So are you saying “Pax” is a nice guy who crafted “edgy” tweets publicly shaming Mel Gibson…. who was secretly recorded saying politically-incorrect things during a drunken argument. Did Pax investigate the “context” of Gibson’s edgy remarks before posting? If not, why does Pax deserve such courtesy? Did Pax express an iota of remorse for piling on unpopular, politically toxic figures before he became one? doubt it.

  • Ivoted4KODOS||

    False equivalency. Pax made a satirical joke on Twitter to 50 friends about Gibson's rant. That is all. His attackers, however, have waged a campaign to keep him from getting a fucking job and earning a living.

    I wouldn't feel sorry for him if he just had to put up with being mocked or the butt of jokes by colleagues, competitors or internet folk. This is a whole different enchilada

  • Jed1957||

    The use of the term "enchilada" is insensitive towards Mexicans, Mexican-Americans, anyone who claims Mexican ancestry, trans-Mexicans, just people who would like to be Mexican, and employees of Mexican restaurants.

  • Ivoted4KODOS||

    Duly noted, Amigo

  • commodious spittoon||

    What do you expect from an outfit called Business Insideher? It's almost like women going after Dickinson were asking for it.

  • waffles||

    Don't these women realize that going on witchhunts just makes hiring women become a liability? If I recall correctly Adria Richards was ultimately fired over donglegate related issues. Hypersensitivity is not a trait you want to present in while seeking a career in tech.

  • waffles||

    I guess it's not just women going on these hunts. It seems there is a loud and vocal group that wants to get their hate on and damn the real-world consequences. Maybe these shameophiles really think this shit is worth destroying someone's career over. Sheesh.

  • commodious spittoon||

    You know what other global conspiracy wants to control people?

  • Mr Lizard||

    Mine?

  • Mr. Paulbotto||

    I thought y'all just wanted to eat people, not control them...

  • Trshmnstr doesn't recycle||

    They're smarter than us... they know that if they control us, they can make us procreate... it's an unending food supply.

  • Michael Price||

    Obviously if they don't control us we're not going to step meekly into the pressure-cooker.

  • Michael Price||

    The Vast Right-Wing Conspiracy? I'm a member BTW.

  • Michael Price||

    The Vast Right-Wing Conspiracy? I'm a member BTW.

  • R C Dean||

    Maybe these shameophiles really think this shit is worth destroying someone's career over.

    No price is too great for other people to pay in service of gratifying the impulses of a shameophile. Or, as somebody dubbed them: "Social Attention Whores".

  • ||

    now we're just haggling over likes

  • ant1sthenes||

    I wonder if part of the problem is, between leftists driving conservatives out of education and media, and social media, these people have created such an environment of uniform thought that they react to slightly conservative flavors of normal like they just met space aliens. While the right (all people, really) certainly has the same psychological tendency, they're rarely able to act on it to the same degree outside of, like, religious compounds.

    It's like the older prog orthodoxy is the germaphobe mom, and these poor kids have severe cultural/ideological allergies now.

  • PaulW||

    Sad but true.

    But don't dare speak the truth, else you'll be ostracized in the same way as Pax.

  • Homple||

    The problem isn't speech, it's the fact that a significant fraction of the population are howling vindictive idiots capable of organizing an international lynch mob in a few minutes.

  • Spurious Shield||

    Being offended = power, who knew?

  • GILMORE, LVL20 Blowhard||

    "those tweets caught the attention of a writer for Valleywag/Gawker, "

    Dirtbag gossip-columnist Sam Biddle? I am not surprised his name is avoided.

  • SkippyTheMarine||

    That guy is the worst.

  • Almanian - Wood Chipper-ish||

    WAIT

    I thought Nikki was the worst?

  • Muhammad Finkelstein (widget)||

    This is serious to those who have a life in tow, but how fragile are we when a twitter mob can destroy it. I read Scalp Dance a few weeks ago. What's it like to have a tribe of Indians kill your sons, slow roast you over a fire, rape your wife 60 times, and enslave your daughter? Custer had some admiration for these savages. His wife complained that he'd rather be outdoors, with his indian friends, hunting and fishing, than being in the encampment with her.

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    That’s a reference to the argument, made by some conservatives and libertarians, that female voting leads to government expansion because women favor more activist government.

    IT'S FUNNY BECAUSE IT'S TRUE.

  • sarcasmic||

    I don't find it to be funny at all.

  • R C Dean||

    Yeah, joke's on us, isn't it.

  • sarcasmic||

    It always is.

  • Muhammad Finkelstein (widget)||

    This an alt-right meme - women would want to fuck around with alpha males and get beta males to pick up the tab. It seems to be working.

  • Idle Hands||

    Ugh. This alpha beta thing is the most tiresome bullshit ever, seriously if you get so butt-hurt about perceived male/female sexual dynamics go gay or something.

  • Immolate||

    I say if you want the superficially attractive women, sport an attitude that they find attractive. Women preferring dominant males is an evolutionary success tactic. That circuitry is hard-wired and difficult to consciously overcome. It's also easy to trick. If you want to know how, befriend an ugly guy with a hot wife. Or even better, develop some self-respect and look deeper than the flesh to the qualities that endure after the flesh corrupts.

  • PapayaSF||

    Well, Anil Dash is certainly living up to his first name.

  • Rhywun||

    "A kneel"?

    /smartass

  • Boomer||

    Feminists aren't the only ones doing it. Reddit wants Ellen Pao's head on a platter, and many cite the sex discrimination lawsuit she filed against Kleiner Perkins as part of the reason they hate her.

  • R C Dean||

    We have two options at this point:

    (1) Allow the Social Attention Whores free reign to verbally assault people without consequences, or

    (2) Turnabout is fair play. If the SAWs want to play that game, then let's everybody play.

    Neither one is particularly attractive. Only option (2) has any possibility of this awful new activity being reduced.

  • Overt||

    Isn't this essentially what GamerGate became? Both sides looking to utterly wreck the people they saw as flag bearers for either side?

    I'm genuinely asking because I have only seen accounts of the mess from both the SJW and the other side, and it seems like both wars of words became a nasty furball that was nearly impossible to understand and just seemed ugly on all sides.

  • tarran||

    Sayre's Law applies: the fight is very vicious because the stakes are so small.

  • mkreitler||

    No so much. While there were trolls among the GamerGaters posting some awful stuff, the main body of GamerGate self-policed, going after the trolls and even helping to expose some of the people making threats against the feminists.

    Meanwhile, SJWs were allowed free rein to troll GamerGaters and availed themselves of the opportunity, without any visible effort toward transparency or self-policing.

    And while the stakes may have been "small," in some sense, in another, they were significant. The SJW crowd tried to force PC-ness on the gaming hobby and got a bloody nose from gaming fans -- which turned out to be a a diverse group, rather than the white-cis-shitlords the media portrays them to be.

  • ant1sthenes||

    The main difference between gamergate and antigamergate is that one was characterized in the media by its worst members, while the other was characterized by its median members. Shockingly, the one demonized by the media was the one hostile to the media, while the pro-media side was treated better.

  • SkippyTheMarine||

    She did fire a very well liked Admin Victoria Taylor, so some of the animosity was understandable. When you're running a business who's content is created by the users and now by the business itself, and one of the Admins who is standing up for that model gets fired because she didn't want to move to the West coast, or make her subreddits more commercial and do a few other things that a majority of the redditors were vehemently against.

  • Theoretical Bi Irish||

    "Reddit wants Ellen Pao's head on a platter, and many cite the sex discrimination lawsuit she filed against Kleiner Perkins as part of the reason they hate her."

    I was under the impression they primarily hate her for shutting down a bunch of popular subreddits (especially one about whale watching which they shut down because they thought 'whale' referenced fat people) and because they got rid of a really popular female admin.

    They may bring up the sex discrimination suit, but it seems they don't like her largely because of actual business decisions she made. And I do think it's different for actual consumers to revolt because they are upset with the product than for a third party to demand someone be fired because of private political opinions.

  • Marshal||

    Shamestorming isn't going away because it doesn't work very well against those who like to use it.

    It works against people who aren't political, but those who disproportionately use it are explicitly political and have jobs in institutions that are immune to this type of public pressure. So the activist group will never feel enough pain to convince them to embrace a MAD style truce.

    In my opinion the only effective way to combat this is to blackball people who support it. Thus I hope there's a list floating around Silicon Valley with the names of every person who tweeted or spoke publicly against Brendan Eich. And I hope every tech company in the country consults it before hiring anyone.

  • Princess Trigger||

    I saw this only a few weeks ago - sort of.
    A 20 something guy, with technical and team lead experience in the right places. Spectacular interviews.

    A quick google, as the hiring team was getting ready to sign off on hiring him, shows he's a enthusiastic participant (via twitter and facebook) of most of the recent SJW internet-rage campaigns. [Tim Hunt seems to have upset him a lot.] The hiring team, most are pretty proggy, took him off the list unanimously. We don't need that shit here - life's too short and too hard (ish) for our business to let that kind of poison in.

  • PapayaSF||

    Ha! Good.

  • Lady Dalrymple||

    And this may bring it full circle.

    People enjoy being part of a righteous mob not realizing their participation my cost them a job when they appear too vicious or easily offended.

  • Marshal||

    That's excellent for your business.

    But it's not likely to impact people joining these shamestorms unless it becomes public knowledge their participation will be held against them. Right now I think the general feeling in tech is not only that it won't but that it actually counts in your favor. Although in tech I'd say the limit on how nasty you can be is understood to be materially less than other industries like academia / media / Hollywood.

    The guy who posted video of himself berating the Chick Fil A counter girl comes to mind. He wasn't a computer guy, but CFO for a tech company and so a similar ethos. He obviously thought his actions were a positive, and they were significantly worse than tweeting.

  • Spurious Shield||

    Somewhat OT - but this is why I'm surprised more of you guys aren't at least a little excited about what Trump has been saying and doing lately. Love him or hate him, he's giving a big fuck you to the PC crowd right now, refusing to apologize or back down, and he's being rewarded by the polls, which of course is making the left -and- the right squirm like crazy, it's a sight to behold.

    Paul/Trump 2016? /sortasarc

  • Marshal||

    They aren't citing the lawsuit as a reason to hate her per se. They cite it as evidence she's more interested in SJW activism than in providing Reddit users with the experience they expect and come to Reddit for.

    Other events supporting:

    1. Pao eliminating salary negotiations for new hires because women supposedly don't negotiate as well (which she alleges is unfair),

    2. Pao stating she has rejected new hires due to their political / social beliefs on diversity.

  • Mr Lizard||

    Chairwoman Pao is THE head SJW right now

  • Spurious Shield||

    +1 Tienanmen subreddit (banned in China of course)

  • Hey Nikki!||

    I think what you mean is, "Reddit wants Ellen Pao's head on a platter, and many idiots in the media cite the sex discrimination lawsuit as part of the reason they hate her."

  • John||

    No. Reddit wants Elllen Pao's head because she started shutting down reddit communities that offended her SJW sensibilities. Had she not done that and every reddit user feared theirs would be next, she would be fine.

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    I think I might shy away from hiring women for tech positions. They seem like delicate flowers too easily offended.

  • Overt||

    I think I might shy away from hiring women for tech positions. They seem like delicate flowers too easily offended.

    That's a pity. Some of the best development teams I have ever worked with were run by women. I think most of the horseshit seen above is not an aspect of women, but an aspect of the vast liberal echo chamber that lives in Silicon Valley. They have an over-representation of SJWs and other Perpetually Offended progs who demonize anyone outside their sphere of philosophy like some Cool Girl's cliche at high school.

    I mean it is absolutely amazing to see how safe and comfortable these people feel as they clog internal mailing lists (for product support, or to discuss new technology) with their Green, Anti-Religious, Pro-Minimum Wage, BS. During the whole "Tech Companies are running up SF House Prices with busing" debate, these people were just vicious- and this was at a major SV company engaging in that busing. They didn't show one iota of awareness that they were calling many of their colleagues the SV version of carpetbaggers and insulting the management of the company while they were at it.

    Anyways, it isn't women in general doing this. It is a select few brazen individuals that NorCal has taught that you can't scream loud enough if you are a lefty.

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    That's my point. These women are doing their gender a disservice in the guise of feminism or whatever they want call their perpetual victimhood.

  • Tony||

    What do you call the perpetual victimhood you're engaging in right now?

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    Brenda.

  • Lady Dalrymple||

    I lol'd

  • Almanian - Wood Chipper-ish||

    BOOM!!!

    goes the dynamite!!

  • Crusty Juggler||

    Access to social media should only be allowed for celebrities and journalists.

  • Jay Dubya||

    The fact remains this guy was an executive at a company that is entirely dependent on its image online to exist. BI was right to fire him, mot for the content of the comments but because he cared so little about the image of his company that he would shoot of his mouth and risk their bread & butter. If he wants to work again & can function as an engineer he should stay outside of the startup world. No one cares if an engineer got in a flame war a few years ago. But his days as a public facing employee are over and rightly so.

  • Theoretical Bi Irish||

    I agree. I think Pax Dickinson is an idiot who clearly should not be the public face of any company due to his total disregard for decorum. If he can't get a job working *anywhere* though, even in a non-public capacity, that is a pretty extreme punishment for the crime of being an asshole.

  • Lady Dalrymple||

    Donald Trump disagrees with you.

  • B.P.||

    Also, he doesn't seem very tech or social-media savvy, which I take to be part of his job description at Business Insider, if he leaves a trail of easily accessible bile with which to be hung.*

    Agreed on the other point.

    *I'm a licensed metaphor mixologist.

  • Jed Templin||

    +1 This year is too important to let a loose cannon rock the boat

  • Trshmnstr doesn't recycle||

    with which to be hung.

    *hanged. A horse is hung, people are hanged.

  • Lady Dalrymple||

    That's not what John Holmes said.

  • Migrant Log Chipper||

    Tweets are for twits.

  • Theoretical Bi Irish||

    "That’s a reference to the argument, made by some conservatives and libertarians, that female voting leads to government expansion because women favor more activist government."

    This is why countries that don't let women have rights are always so much freer than countries with female equality. I mean, why would you want to live in abominably statist countries like America, Germany, or Switzerland, where women have equal rights and vote for welfare so they can buy themselves makeup and high heeled shoes, when you could live in way freer countries like the libertarian wonderlands of Saudi Arabia, Iran, and Pakistan?

    The fact that countries that have fewer rights for women tend to be more authoritarian kind of contradicts this argument, doesn't it?

  • tarran||

    Women couldn't vote in Switzerland until very recently....

  • Theoretical Bi Irish||

    1971 is still 44 years ago and they've managed to vote without fucking up Switzerland with the nefarious statism of their collective vaginas.

    There is one hilarious conservative canton that didn't have women's suffrage until 1990. That's also one of the cantons where you can use your sword for voter ID, which is awesome.

  • Seamus||

    I remember reading in National Review at the time, "After centuries of good government, Switzerland has given women the vote." I supported women's suffrage at the time, but I still laughed pretty hard.

  • sarcasmic||

    The fact that countries that have fewer rights for women tend to be more authoritarian kind of contradicts this argument, doesn't it?

    Not at all. The argument is simply that women are more likely than men to vote for politicians who promise to have government do more stuff, and the result is government doing more stuff.

  • Theoretical Bi Irish||

    And men are more likely to vote for government that spends shitloads of money on bombs. The absolute most you can say is that female statists vote in a way slightly different than male statists, but that's about it. We just found out that Texas, of all allegedly free market states, had 750 hour classes you had to take to engage in eyebrow threading, so the anti-welfare state Texans didn't exactly vote in politicians that care about free markets.

    Before women could vote, war was more frequent. I'm not saying war was more frequent because when male votes weren't counterbalanced by female votes bellicose men called all the shots, I'm just saying that argument makes just as much sense as the WOMEN MAKE WELFARE HAPPEN argument.

    I have a tough time deciding which of those is less libertarian.

  • sarcasmic||

    Are you arguing that women do not value security more than men, and do not vote accordingly?

    Are you arguing that women have not supported getting that security from government?

    All I'm saying is that when women vote for politicians (who may not have gotten elected if not for the female vote) who promise that security, the result is more government. That's all. Human nature is a bitch (no pun intended).

  • Lady Dalrymple||

    He's making a distinction between national security (defense) and social security (welfare).

  • Theoretical Bi Irish||

    Yep. You know for an irrational woman who only cares about being coddled by the state, you sure did do a better job understanding my point than sarcasmic.

    And by the way, the most radical, anti-state libertarians I've met are virtually all women. Nicole is so anarchistic she actually frightens me.

    In America, black people vote in a more monolithic block in favor welfare than women do, but no one would ever claim this is due to natural race differences. I think people vote depending upon the ideas to which they are exposed and I don't think women are more likely to vote Democratic due to natural sex differences.

    Incidentally, women who are married actually lean Republican. The Democrat sex advantage from women comes entirely from single women, especially from single women with out of wedlock children. So the issue is actually broken families causing statist policies, not women generally.

  • sarcasmic||

    The Democrat sex advantage from women comes entirely from single women, especially from single women with out of wedlock children.

    What about single men in that situation? Do they tend to vote for politicians who promise to have government be their baby's daddy?

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    Nicole is so anarchistic she actually frightens me.

    Nicole, like Serpentor, is the result of the genetic combination (in vitro) of Rose Wilder Lane, Ayn Rand, Isabel Paterson, and Zora Neale Hurston. The latter is whom I assume dat ass originated from.

  • Hey Nikki!||

    The latter is whom I assume dat ass originated from.

    Finally, someone gets me!

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    Of course.

    And who was responsible for this chimera?

    It was me, Barry! Me!

  • Spurious Shield||

    Worse than that, the state knows that full well, and so establish more policies to promote the breakdown of the family. Kick your husband out? Get more welfare as a single mom! It would be madness if it weren't so...intended.

  • Tony||

    Sexist and awful much?

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    In God we trust, all others bring data.

    Research in fields like behavioral economics and the like has overwhelming shown that women are more risk-averse then men, on the other hand women show a slightly higher tolerance for ambiguity than men. (In this field, "risk" is when one knows the odds of a decision, and "ambiguity" is when one doesn't.)

    The political ramifications of this, I leave for you to debate.

  • lap83||

    sarcasmic, women are less likely to vote Democrat than black men. Is that "human nature"?

  • lap83||

    Personally, I attribute those differences to culture...which can change. It explains the racial discrepancies as well as discrepancies among single and married women. But it doesn't matter what you attribute it to as much as what you don't attribute it to. As soon as you start acting like those traits are inborn you've thrown out the possibility that people can change their mind. It's not fair and it can be self-fulfilling.

  • Lady Dalrymple||

    Good point.

    Hey, fellow libertarians, here's a radical thought: treat people as individuals instead of collective racial and/or gender traits!

  • Hey Nikki!||

    Come now, little lady, we all know you're just emoting. Let the men think. That's what they do. They use reason, not feelings, to determine we are all alike. Because feelings come from vaginas.

  • Hamster of Doom||

    Nonsense. Broadbrushing huge demographics is surely the emotionless, logical argument.

  • Heroic Mulatto||

  • Sidd Finch v2.01||

    Hey, fellow libertarians, here's a radical thought: treat people as individuals instead of collective racial and/or gender traits!

    I don't know anyone, even self-described sexists and racists, who advocate treating individuals as their group averages. Do you?

  • Tony||

    It's all easily explained by the overt hostility Republicans have toward women and minorities.

  • Lady Dalrymple||

    Hey, look, female libertarians!

    We should start a band. I get to be Baby Spice.

  • lap83||

    You're not helping

  • lap83||

    (To Tony)

  • MariontheLibrarian||

    I think the assumption by the SJWs that I can't think for myself, or help myself, is much more hostile than anything the Republicans have come up with. According to progressives, I am too stupid to negotiate for myself, too helpless to take responsibility for myself after a one night stand, and I am too incompetent to earn as much as a man in my field. That's hostile, right there.

  • Rhywun||

    I think it's far more troubling that people who are an overall suck on the economy are voting for more of the same.

  • Spurious Shield||

    Soon we will be Greece v2 -- updated with improved debt-hiding gymnastics and our own money printer!

  • Sidd Finch v2.01||

    Somalia tho

  • John||

    No. The accusation is that they lead to the welfare state. Those countries may be authoritarian but they don't have huge welfare states.

  • Trshmnstr doesn't recycle||

    The fact that countries that have fewer rights for women tend to be more authoritarian kind of contradicts this argument, doesn't it?

    Try controlling for confounding variables. I'm not gonna go all MRA "teh womenzz ruined murica" but I don't think that it's out of line to acknowledge that the female vote trends slightly authoritarian compared to the average.

  • Theoretical Bi Irish||

    "trends slightly authoritarian compared to the average."

    The female vote may trend more in favor of the welfare state, but not more authoritarian. There are all sorts of ways you can be authoritarian and some of those ways are supported by men more than women.

    The issue I have is when libertarians complain about women because they're more likely to support a welfare state while ignoring the fact that men tend to have much more positive views about the use of military force. Since idiotic use of military force and welfare are both positions libertarians are supposed to oppose, why is it that only women get shit on for their tendency to be more supportive of statist economic policy while men get a pass for their more supportive view of military interventions?

  • sarcasmic||

    Look! A red herring! The red herring did it! Look! Over there!

  • Theoretical Bi Irish||

    It's not a red herring. People here bitch constantly about how women vote for the welfare state and blah blah blah to the point where I have actually seen posts arguing women never should have been allowed to vote.

    People then conveniently ignore the fact that men are consistently more in favor of military interventions, including things like our idiotic destruction of Libya. If you're going to collectivize entire genders, why not collectivize both instead of shitting on the gender you don't belong to while pretending you're just being empirical?

  • Sidd Finch v2.01||

    collectivize entire genders

    LOL

  • sarcasmic||

    People here bitch constantly about how women vote for the welfare state...

    Really? I can't remember the last time I saw it come up, if ever.

    People then conveniently ignore the fact that men are consistently more in favor of military interventions...

    How does that refutes the assertion that women tend to vote for politicians who promise more government? All I see is a red herring.

  • Lady Dalrymple||

    He's not refuting that women tend to vote for politicians who promise more welfare spending. He's pointing out that men also vote for politicians who promise a different kind of welfare in the shape of military spending. They just happen to typically vote Republican.

    You're only associating the free shit brigade with Democrats, so women voting equals more free shit. But, men voting for Republicans to spend on the military is also the free shit brigade, just a different variety.

  • sarcasmic||

    Fair enough, but I still see it as a separate and unrelated issue.

  • Tony||

    See, a lazy welfare queen getting her free crab legs from uncle sugar is simply a far bigger moral crime than bombing thousands of brown children to death for no reason. We have to focus on the big things first.

  • Sidd Finch v2.01||

    Guy who trolls comments section all day concerned about the big things.

  • Lady Dalrymple||

    What's wrong, Tony?

    Someone mean to you today? It's okay, let all those bad feelings out and get your righteous on. We don't mind.

  • Sidd Finch v2.01||

    He's not refuting that women tend to vote for politicians who promise more welfare spending. He's pointing out that men also vote for politicians who promise a different kind of welfare in the shape of military spending.

    He's doing this now that his OP fell flat.

  • John Titor||

    The female vote may trend more in favor of the welfare state, but not more authoritarian.

    And it would also be interesting to see where exactly the non-voting female population are politically.

  • MariontheLibrarian||

    My female friends who don't vote all tend to be anarchists. They are also mostly stay at home moms. Not sure this is coincidence.

  • Trshmnstr doesn't recycle||

    The issue I have is when libertarians complain about women because they're more likely to support a welfare state while ignoring the fact that men tend to have much more positive views about the use of military force.

    Can we not notice that women tend to disagree with libertarians for certain reasons that may or may not have some root in biology without being forced to come up with some sort of equivalent for men and without having to hedge our observations in a thousand little caveats??

    Of course these biological inclinations are minor. Of course they don't control people like those Wrath of Khan earworms. Of course there are female libertarians and female anarchists. Does this mean that somehow we're not allowed to generalize, because sometimes certain people don't fit the generalization? Bullshit. How about we recognize that people who are generalizing aren't doing so as an all-encompassing pass of judgment on an entire gender, but merely as an observation of a measured trend.

    Yeah, men tend to be more biologically predisposed to aggression, and tend to vote for the "cool military stuff" more than women... how, exactly, is this germane to the topic at hand, except as some sort of social signalling to the "biologically indistinguishable" feminist movement??

  • Spurious Shield||

    Something something...biology.... something...prejudice and generalization = survival something something...

    but what do we know? everyone is -equal- now [newspeak meaning: exactly the fucking same] ...even when they're clearly not.

  • Spurious Shield||

    And that is not to say one is better than the other -- merely that there are many differences that need to be recognized, not shoved under the rug while shouting 'sexist!'

  • PM||

    The female vote may trend more in favor of the welfare state, but not more authoritarian.

    What the fuck exactly is the welfare state if not authoritarian?

  • KerryW||

    "The fact that countries that have fewer rights for women tend to be more authoritarian kind of contradicts this argument, doesn't it?"

    That depends on where you're starting from. There's the statism of the left and authoritarianism on the right (if you care to make a distinction); if you're starting with a relatively free society, the argument doesn't necessarily have a contradiction. (A linear scale to measure political persuasion
    is far from complete, as libertarians well know, but in this case I think it's a useful concept.)

  • John Titor||

    I wouldn't say 'female voting' in general is a problem, just a very specific type of women voting (and they don't even seem to make up a majority). The feminist that lacks all self-awareness declaring themselves 'independent/strong/whatever' while demanding that the government act as their surrogate provider/husband/father. And ultimately that's more a product of their own individual issues, rather than an entire condemnation of all women. Women tend to have just as diverse an opinion on politics as men, even if women's issues are the focus. I mean, we joke about women libertarians, but there are a fair amount of them on this forum alone.

  • Spurious Shield||

    Speaking of that group -- I wonder how many of them are single mothers struggling to make ends meet? I'd wager that number is zero, but I welcome responses from what I hope will become my new friends.

    Nobody commenting here is an 'average American' -- we're all (even Tony, Bo, Tulpa and the rest of the uncouth bunch here) more educated on what is going on with the world than the average citizen on the street. We're not a 'representative set' by any means, and by extension, neither are our female peers.

    That said, I have to disagree with your comment that the 'specific type' of female voter doesn't make up a majority. Obama carried all women by 12 points in 2012, and he carried unmarried women by 36 points (!!). Unmarried women make up more than 50% of all women voters in the US now. To me it's pretty clear that unmarried women as a block strongly support left-wing politics, the reasons why have already been stated.

    I'm not suggesting we take anyone's vote away (though I'd favor raising the age...you know, until you actually lose a job or two... no voting while your #1 priority is getting drunk and 'raping' women on college campuses [too soon?]) -- but I do think there is a clear pattern here that needs to be addressed in the form of removing the barriers to keeping families together, but that's another post.

  • MariontheLibrarian||

    *raises hand*. Hispanic single mother of three, here. Worked full time and went to school full time, earning first a bachelor's, then a master's degree in accounting. Full frontal Libertarian, here! ;)

  • ant1sthenes||

    It's a catch 22. A nation that doesn't give women the vote is illiberal and authoritarian. A nation that gives women the vote will become illiberal and authoritarian.

  • Trshmnstr doesn't recycle||

    One of his much-quoted tweets said, "Tech managers spend as much time worrying about how to hire talented female developers as they do worrying about how to hire a unicorn," which seems to imply that female talent is mythical.

    Really??? It seems to actually imply that tech managers don't spend time worrying about hiring female talent, just like they don't worry about hiring unicorns. It seems much more like a dig at tech managers than at "female talent in tech."

  • Mark6||

    ..or maybe he was implying that tech managers aren't concerned with the plumbing of their new hire developers but ratherthe talent they provide.

  • Rhywun||

    Yet another reason to avoid twittering and facebooking like the plague.

  • Tony||

    You've got to be fucking kidding me.

    So women and minorities are seriously underrepresented in the industry and the victims of constant childish bullshit by the white guys who dominate it. Oh and women couldn't fucking vote.

    Those are kinda bad things, but isn't it really really bad that this white guy can't get a job because he was a giant asshole in public?

    This is parody.

  • Theoretical Bi Irish||

    "So women and minorities are seriously underrepresented in the industry"

    Women are 'underrepresented' because women don't go into fields related to this industry, not because of sexism, and minorities are not underrepresented unless you purposefully ignore the fact that over half of people in Silicon valley are Asian despite making up like 4% of the general population.

    Oh, what's that? You didn't realize minorities are actually wildly overrepresented in Silicon Valley because of the number of Asians? Man, you sure are dumb.

  • Tony||

    Asians don't count. The point is that the general sentiment seems to be that a white guy being blacklisted is probably a worse crime against humanity than slavery and women lacking the franchise put together.

  • Sidd Finch v2.01||

    I worry that there's a real human this stupid driving on the same roads, and then "Asians don't count."

  • Seamus||

    Wait a minute. Asians don't fucking *count*? Why the fuck not? Because of their fucking Asian privilege that allows them to get jobs without everyone assuming that they must be affirmative action hires? And which allows them to walk in groups down the street without drivers quickly locking their doors? Yeah, that must be it.

    And no, nobody's saying that a white guy being blacklisted was probably a worse crime against humanity than slavery and women lacking the franchise, any more than opponents of the Hollywood blacklist thought that Dalton Trumbo being unable to get work was worse that the Gulag.

  • John Titor||

    Because when you have a 'race' that statistically counteracts Tony's beliefs in regards to race and gender relations he chooses to pretend they don't exist. Of course, there's nothing racist at all about Tony belittling the experiences of an entire group of people because they don't fit with his preconceptions.

    Or maybe it's just that Asian privilege.

  • Theoretical Bi Irish||

    "Asians don't count"

    LOL, this is the parody!

    "Minorities are underrepresented!"

    "Actually, every ethnic group other than Asians are underrepresented and a higher percentage of silicon valley is non-white than the general population."

    "In this case, I'm not counting Asians as a minority because it undermines my point! Stop pointing out the Asian thing!"

  • Tony||

    Fine, let's just focus on women, which everyone is ignoring and is the main point. Asians don't count because they are not in fact underrepresented so they don't have the problem that is being discussed.

  • Overt||

    Tony, they count because the broader narrative- and you know it to be true- is that there is some sort of bias in the tech sector that prevents Minorities and Women from getting in.

    However, if that bias were there, why are Asians over-represented? Many of them are immigrants. Indians have long suffered the stereotypes of being 7-11 employees. If there is a WASP Male club barring the gates to tech companies, did those patriarchs suddenly go blind?

    The fact is, Asians count because they demonstrably prove that there is no stated or subconscious bias in tech firms that leads them to only hire "their own." They count because people like you- who should be concerned more with HELPING minorities rather than demonizing whites- could ask yourselves the question- "Why are these minorities so over-represented?" If you asked yourself that question, you would find that it is because they are over-represented in the engineering fields. Set aside that blacks and hispanics are less likely to go into college, if you look at their chosen majors, it is rarely a CS field. And women are MORE likely to finish college, but they are even less likely to choose a CS or other engineering degree.

    Asians count because they are the answer to your question of underrepresentation. If you want more Minorities and Women in tech, get them to do what the Asians did.

  • Rhywun||

    You could hardly find a more meritocratic field than IT. It is just astonishing that our little racist here thinks it's some sort of "white boys club".

  • Tony||

    If you want more Minorities and Women in tech, get them to do what the Asians did.

    Immigrate from the other side of the world in a clear case of self-selection for higher incomes and education levels?

  • Trshmnstr doesn't recycle||

    self-selection for higher incomes and education levels?

    You mean an education level like a Bachelors of Science in engineering or computer science? You know, the education level required in order to be hired for these jobs in the first place?

    Of course, these tech firms are evil because they won't hire more women's studies majors as software developers!

  • Tony||

    Self-selection explains the success rates of Asians, that's all. It seems that the farther you have to travel to live and work here, the better you do, which makes sense because only families with a certain income level can afford to do that (add in green card stuff).

    I'm not suggesting an explanation for the lack of women in the industry, just noting that it's something liberals think is a legitimate problem and not something to completely ignore and blame on biology. Maybe the problem starts in toddlerhood when girls are given Barbies instead of Legos. Who knows?

  • Trshmnstr doesn't recycle||

    Maybe the problem starts in toddlerhood when girls are given Barbies instead of Legos. Who knows?

    Maybe... so since we don't know anything about this issue, let's just blame patriarchy.

  • triclops||

    That is literally exactly what the progs do.

  • Theoretical Bi Irish||

    "Immigrate from the other side of the world in a clear case of self-selection for higher incomes and education levels?"

    Well, if the issue is educational levels, then you just admitted the issue is not discrimination against non-whites.

    So if the issue is educational levels, your argument is still invalidated due to the fact that that means Silicon Valley is trying to get the best talent rather than discriminating based on race or gender.

    Every argument you make causes it to become more obvious your initial post was wrong.

  • Tony||

    I haven't made an argument. I was simply trying to mock libertarians for their complete lack of self-awareness when they bitch about grievance politics while being little more than a white guys' club for bitching about how bad white guys have it.

  • Theoretical Bi Irish||

    "grievance politics while being little more than a white guys' club for bitching about how bad white guys have it."

    Except I don't care that this guy is white. I did not see anyone mention this guy's ethnicity until you came in. Largely the complaint was that someone should not have their livelihood ruined *forever* because they were an asshole on twitter.

    That goes for black people, Asians, whites, whatever. Once again, our resident idiot progressive projects his own racism onto other people and pretends he caught the racists that only exist in his mind in some sort of nefarious and well-laid trap.

    BTW, when you start by saying 'minorities are underrepresented' and then go on to talk about discrimination, you're clearly making an argument that underrepresentation is caused by that discrimination. I'm not as illiterate as you are, so I caught the obvious subtext.

  • Theoretical Bi Irish||

    Also, in case you're going to try to ignore what you actually said, here's the initial post you fucking moron.

    "So women and minorities are seriously underrepresented in the industry and the victims of constant childish bullshit by the white guys who dominate it."

    You made an explicit argument that minorities are underrepresented (false) and claimed this is somewhat related to the 'childish bullshit' by 'the white guys who dominate it' (false on both counts as whites don't dominate Silicon Valley and 'childish bullshit' is unrelated to any racial and gender disparities that exist).

  • triclops||

    Shorter Tony:
    Defending someone who happens to be a white guy is racist.
    Never defend the white guy!

  • Overt||

    Immigrate from the other side of the world in a clear case of self-selection for higher incomes and education levels?

    Now you are being deliberately obtuse.

    First off, while there are many Indian immigrants in SV, there is a huge number of 3rd+ generation asians. They didn't immigrate here. But they were encouraged by their families, communities and peer groups to focus on engineering disciplines in their studies.

    But your obtuseness gives you away Tony. You aren't concerned about the plight of minorities. You are concerned about rich people running rich corporations. This is just another club to hit them with. If you actually cared about blacks and women, you would eagerly agree that targeting the firms means nothing when women and minorities just aren't graduating into engineering fields.

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    Why are you even bothering to engage him? He's a fatal combination of supercilious and utterly pig-ignorant.

  • Tony||

    Talking about third generations only reinforces the point that family income is hugely determinative in whether one succeeds in this country. There are lots (and lots) of very poor Indians in India. They are not typically the ones who make it to the US.

  • Overt||

    Talking about third generations only reinforces the point that family income is hugely determinative in whether one succeeds in this country.

    Since I gave no indication of whether or not these 3rd Generation Asians were rich or not, I don't see how you can make this assertion. But no matter.

    You have just abandoned your original accusation- that white men are creating hostile environments for minorities (well except asians, who I guess white men give a pass to) and women. Now you are talking about pervasive poverty. If you want to have that discussion in a wealth distribution article, I'm sure one will come around this week. But would you at least admit that you are abandoning your argument and falling back to these other ones?

    The tech industry is the absolute worst place to find white male privilege. SV is about as liberal as you get and a fund raising Disneyland for Democrat politicians. You have been so obsessed with finding monocled robber barons pulling strings that you are naturally assuming- with no knowledge- that they MUST be the reason minorities/women are underrepresented in the industry. So obsessed are you that when I give you research that practically no one disputes (graduation rates in the engineering field) you stubbornly look for some class warfare bullshit that must actually be the case.

  • Trshmnstr doesn't recycle||

    If you want more Minorities and Women in tech, get them to do what the Asians did.

    Get a degree in an area that allows you to be hired into a tech firm?

    Hang on, I know what the response is. I'm a bigot sexist cis-shitlord for suggesting that women and minorities have enough agency to decide for themselves whether or not they'll pursue the educational path required to get a job in silicon valley.

  • Rhywun||

    the problem that is being discussed

    I'm going to assume you're referring to women being "the victims of constant childish bullshit".

    I have worked in IT for 20 years - you would think the women I come across would complain about being "the victims of constant childish bullshit" once in a while, right? Or maybe, it is a problem that is completely inside your head. One or two anecdotal exceptions don't prove anything.

  • John Titor||

    The funniest part of this is people who have never worked in or around a tech field screaming about how horrible the tech field is. My only experience is office work in university for Adobe and the majority of friends who work in IT. I know one guy who's afraid of going outside and is pretty far on the autism spectrum.

    It's almost some high school level bullshit about those 'weird nerds'.

  • John Titor||

    Damn phone

    *I know one guy who's afraid of going outside and is pretty far on the autism spectrum. And he's never been unemployed because he's a decent programmer. When your industry is hiring shut-ins with no problems whatsoever because they're competent it's about as meritocratic as you can get.

  • Trshmnstr doesn't recycle||

    It's almost some high school level bullshit about those 'weird nerds'.

    Yep. I worked for 3 years for a top tech company. I worked in a group that was 60% female, 35% Chinese/Korean, 40% Indian, and 25% other (there were 4 white people out of 30-35 group members). Our direct bosses were primarily male, but there were a lot of females in middle management (which tended in general to be more white), and our tech leads were disproportionately female. There were a few aspie white guys who were tech leads, but most were asian or indian females.

    I got to do some hiring for this company, and I saw the resumes. It was a cornucopia of the best, male or female, all ethnicities. It was great being at the "top." You could pick from a thousand different resumes, all with stellar credentials, and you could have a rainbow of diversity.

    I've also worked for a mid-level tech company before that (while i was in undergrad). It was much less diverse. A bunch of old white and indian guys. They, on the other hand, didn't have much choice as to who they hired. They would get 15 resumes (as compared to 500), and of those 15, 4 wouldn't even be qualified for the job, 9 were white males, and the other 2 were barely qualified. Sometimes the diversity won out, and the better qualified white males were passed up to try to get some semblance of diversity on the team. Many times, this company didn't have the luxury of hiring somebody with inferior skills and was forced to hire the white guy.

  • Spurious Shield||

    12 years, here -- built a hosted VoIP company for the last 6 years, started my own cloud firm this year. I agree with Trshmnstr, FYTW, and Rhywun -- even at our 'small' VoIP company, we had Women, Asians, African Americans, Jews, Christians, Atheists, LGBT, even people with prior criminal records that nobody else would hire. Because at the end of the day, as Rhywun said, finding talent is key in this field, nothing else matters.

    IT is probably the absolute most level playing field of ANY career path in America in the sense that you can have a 'simple' idea, and turn it into a multi-million dollar enterprise in a matter of a few years. Nobody cares what color you are, only what color your icon is in the App Store. The rest just comes down to education, and that's up to each person as an individual to accomplish.

  • FYTW||

    25 years, here -- worked as a software engineer, and then as a lawyer for software engineers.

    The only time I have even ever heard of women being victims of childish sexist bullshit was the Julie Horvath/Github fiasco, which occurred in a progressive-hipster hothouse.

  • Theoretical Bi Irish||

    You said minorities. And by your definition whites are severely underrepresented since they make up less than half the population in Silicon Valley despite being 63% of America.

    Secondly, women are not being excluded in Silicon Valley. Women don't get the requisite degrees in college in the same numbers men do so they don't get hired in Silicon Valley because fewer women apply to jobs out there. It's not sexism - it's a matter of the choices women make.

    So your argument about women is also wrong and by your own definition we should all be weeping for white people as they are horribly underrepresented in Silicon Valley. You fucked up this argument so badly it actually hurts my head.

  • Rhywun||

    And we were doing so well ignoring him until he dropped that turd.

  • Idle Hands||

    Hahahahahaha your such a fucking joke at this point you racist piece of shit.

  • MariontheLibrarian||

    Asians don't count? All the ones I know are math geniuses.

    Seriously, Tony, racist much?

  • Theoretical Bi Irish||

    Example: Google is 61% white. But whites make up 63% of the population, so whites are actually underrepresented at Google. Who is overrepresented? Well, Asians make up 30% of Google employees. So the people 'overrepresented' are actually Asians, while every other ethnic group is underrepresented.

    So unless you want to take jobs from Asians (who are the ones actually overrepresented) I'm not sure what your point is.

  • Paul.||

    When progressives talk about "minorities" they're usually specifically excluding Asians as Gavin Newsom quietly admitted.

    And if we talk about the tech industry, they're going to have to dramatically exclude people from India, although they can arguably be included under the Asian umbrella.

  • Overt||

    Most statistics of race include Indians in the Asian umbrella. Though it isn't always that way.

  • Sidd Finch v2.01||

    So women and minorities are seriously underrepresented in the industry

    Whites make up about the same percent of tech companies as the general US population, so how is it that minorities are underrepresented?

  • John Titor||

    I mean, hell, if we're counting those on the autism spectrum as 'minorities' the tech industry is the most successful minority hiring program to date.

  • Sidd Finch v2.01||

    This is what I've never understood about the women in tech thing. "We need to train the empathy out of women so they'll enjoy staring at code for 70 hours a week." Umm... why? We finally found a productive place for all these aspie weirdos and now you want to create more?

  • jdgalt||

    I wonder if they'll also try to train empathy into men so more of us can become child care and social workers.

    Nah, they'll just say men are evil and justify it by smearing us all as molesters.

  • Win Bear||

    So women and minorities are seriously underrepresented in the industry

    Actually, whites are underrepresented in the tech industry, relative to the population.

    and the victims of constant childish bullshit by the white guys who dominate it.

    The only white guy who spews "constant childish bullshit" I know is you, Tony. The tech industry, actually, is far more tolerant and open-minded than the rest of society.

  • ant1sthenes||

    "Minorities" aren't underrepresented in the industries. Maybe one or two specific minorities (given the number of central and east asians and even hispanics I encounter in tech, I can only assume you mean blacks). To the extent they are, it's because society and education are failing to create them, not because the industry is excluding them.

    Women (by which I mean humans with female sex), yes, but that's not due to sexism in society, it's due to sexism in nature. It's easy to live in denial of mental differences between men and women because unlike the physical differences, you can't just see them. They're still there. Brains that are further down the autism spectrum are better with computers and worse with people, and "tech" is basically synonymous with computer work. It's a tradeoff, though, not an advantage.

  • Trshmnstr doesn't recycle||

    So women and minorities are seriously underrepresented

    You know, it's funny. Women were waaaaay underrepresented when getting the requisite degree (the same one I was getting) in college. Despite the very best efforts of recruiters, women in industry, and the women in the engineering school, not that many new college women were all that interested in engineering.

    Then, when hiring came around, the women were the first to get hired. Not because they had great grades (most that I knew had quite pedestrian GPAs), but because it was so damn hard to find degree-eligible female talent. The top companies got first pick of the female talent to try to hit their quotas, and the rest of the companies were stuck hiring underqualified women engineers because they had to attempt to hit a quota. The (pedestrian GPA) women I knew in undergrad got tons of offers for first and second-tier jobs. The pedestrian GPA men were trying to scrounge for one offer from a third-tier company, or even looking in fields only slightly related to their degree (like IT and process automation).

    I have tons of respect for good women engineers (like i have tons of respect for good male engineers). I've worked with some of the best in the tech industry, and there is no qualifier needed. They are smart, hard-working engineers. The problem in the tech world is that because the female talent pool is so small, the talent drops off much quicker than in the male talent pool.

  • Overt||

    It is no coincidence that most of the Women in Technology groups are starting to focus on pre-college programs. The last one my wife was at had started huge marketing programs meant to make Engineering seem cool to women. They are playing up the image of the geek-hottie as much as possible because they know that the future of women participating in technology will never change until they target at least high-school graduates.

    To an extent, I can agree with the notion that this is a society-caused problem- we have long portrayed engineering as a field for a gamut of geniuses a la Real Genius. What irks me is the people who think quotas will solve it. How about starting with pop culture. How many hot women engineers did you see 10 or 20 years ago when today's career women were making these life decisions? Today that is changing, but you still rarely see well adjusted women on tv in engineering roles. Doctors and Lawyers? Sure. But for tech, you get punk-goth girl on CSI, Chloe the autistic on 24 or Amy the dowdy on Big Bang Theory. The image is clear- if you were an outcast, engineering is for you. But if you were popular, there are better fields for you.

  • BambiB||

    It's not going to change anyway. Tech requires rational thought. Women generally don't have that. If they did, generally, they wouldn't be women.

    I've known a few exceptionally intelligent, hot women. But they were really the exception. The old "brains*beauty is a constant" is more commonly true.

    The College Entrance Examination Board's efforts to gender-norm the physics II Achievement test fell flat. They finally concluded, they can gender-norm the test - or they can test ability to do physics. Not both. Look up the study. It's quite revealing.

  • MariontheLibrarian||

    What about Garcia on Criminal Minds?!? She is the reason I am starting to learn coding!!!!!

  • Paul.||

    Wait, when did we agree his joke was "ill conceived"?

  • Idle Hands||

    this thread gave me an ulcer.

  • Tony||

    Because of all the people who actually think women shouldn't be allowed to vote?

  • Win Bear||

    Nitasha Tiku's is your typical journalism / English major. People with that kind of background have no skills that are valuable in and of themselves. The only way they have to make a living is either by getting government handouts or by being manipulative, and that drives everything they do.

    One of their favorite targets is the tech industry. Not just is it an industry where people with skills make a lot of money, journalism majors look at tech workplaces and think "hey, these people sit in front of the computer all day just like I do, why are they so much better off?" It leaves these people green with envy, and it is responsible for their attacks on tech; they just want to take techies down a notch or two.

  • Lady Dalrymple||

    Now, now, I depend on English majors to correct my grammar and generally be pedantic.

    I have a BFA, so I'm completely useless, right? No, sorry, stop generalizing.

  • Almanian - Wood Chipper-ish||

    Whoa! SOMEONE's emoting again....

  • Win Bear||

    No, sorry, stop generalizing.

    If you want to know what I'm getting at, read Sowell's "Intellectuals and Society". If you are an intellectual in Sowell's sense, you are not just useless, you are harmful.

    I have a BFA, so I'm completely useless, right?

    That depends. You may have seen the error of your ways, learned some more useful skill afterwards, and now make a living doing something other than being a SJW. If your BFA is your only skill, yes, I'd say that makes you completely useless.

  • Tony||

    Read something besides Sowell. Christ you people are epistemically closed like a fucking pickle jar.

  • triclops||

    Why do you hate black people, Tony?

  • Overt||

    I also think that there is a boiling antipathy for tech because 1) it is unabashedly consumer-focused, which means plebeians "wasting" their money on gadgets, 2) it is one of the biggest counter-examples of the benevolent government that fixes all and 3) it is a big money industry and no big money industry could ever possibly be good.

    The tech industry is so ruthlessly capitalist and has been so wildly successful that it is a big thumb in the eye of central planners. Moore's Law would have been impossible without the constant disruption of technology. Every day, new services blow up old models- from commerce to taxis. And tech did this without a bunch of coercion. They are largely Union Free. They govern themselves with standards and protocols without legislative fiat but through open papers and collaboration- even among competitors. They are proof that government doesn't need to meddle in everything.

  • Tony||

    Everyone should read Woolf's A Room of One's Own. To apply one of her insights here, consider that it is erroneous to declare that a government formed by only men is a kind of default, with women adding their voice only mucking things up with their womanliness. A government formed by only women would be no more or less legitimate, though it may very well focus on different things.

    If the only voices and perspectives you care about are those of men, that is your bias, not nature's. Government (like literature) is a human invention. It is what we make of it, and who "we" are composed of affects how it turns out. Government, like lots of other things, was considered the proper concern only of men because men were ones already doing it and talking about it.

    If women voting leads to a more welfare-centric state, then we must see a more welfare-centric state as one that more accurately represents the will of the governed than a government that only does what men want it to do. Hence, male-dominated (and, even more-so, white-dominated) libertarianism, will turn out a politics that is woefully insufficient to address the full spectrum of concerns of human beings.

  • Sidd Finch v2.01||

    tl;dr

  • John Titor||

    Hence, Tony is a moron who just spent the entire thread belittling a field he knows nothing about for failing to hire what he determines 'minorities' (in his incredibly narrow minded view of course) and then argues that majority will is the sole factor in politics.

    And once again Tony, your emotional platitudes are empty and vapid. The 'will of the governed' is not some magical truth you've clearly elevated to a divine truth when it suits you. Consensus does not equal reality. Popular choices are not inherently good choices by any rational deduction. The 'voices and perspectives' of men, women, regardless of race, mean nothing if they're wrong. And that's your true idiocy Tony. You're more focused on the people who say something than the actual ideas discussed.

  • Tony||

    I only suggest that perhaps a cohort of white males might have some blind spots when it comes to governing a country full of other types of people. Anyone who entertains the notion that women are inherently different from men, or blacks from whites, should believe this all the more, no?

    You presuppose the existence of a "right" way to govern, and that is no surprise; libertarians consistently treat democratic will as suspect because it doesn't give them everything they want right now dammit. But there have been countless pretenders to the crown of all-seeing governing philosophies, and, alas, most of them end in an orgy of mass murder.

    This is why consulting the will of the governed was considered a good idea in the first place. We can't trust any one person or any one group to have discovered the One True system, and anyone claiming to have found it is 100% certainly a charlatan. So we actually can't do better than to just ask the people themselves what they want. If we're only asking half of them, we're getting a half-assed outcome.

  • sarcasmic||

    If I was to point out that cars and trucks were different, you'd accuse me of being an automotive bigot. Fucking moron.

  • sarcasmic||

    So we actually can't do better than to just ask the people themselves what they want.

    Actually, we can. We can allow people to do for themselves what they want, so long as they don't infringe upon the life, liberty, or property of others through force or fraud. When someone does infringe upon others then it is the duty of the government to right the injustice. It's called "liberty and justice for all."

    But we already know that you despise both of those things.

    What you want is the people reduced to slaves who must ask permission and obey orders from their massa government, while their massa violates their life, liberty and property through force and fraud. This is otherwise known as social justice, which is in fact institutionalized injustice.

  • Tony||

    You have absolutely no ability to understand what I'm talking about, do you?

  • sarcasmic||

    And that's your true idiocy Tony. You're more focused on the people who say something than the actual ideas discussed.

    Yup. Principals, not principles.

    You could take some random statement and attribute it to a Republican, and he'd have all kinds of hateful things to say about the person.

    Attribute the exact same words to a Democrat and he'd shower the person with flowery praise.

    This is because he is a idiot who is totally incapable of judging ideas on their own merits, so he must judge the source instead.

  • Win Bear||

    If women voting leads to a more welfare-centric state, then we must see a more welfare-centric state as one that more accurately represents the will of the governed than a government that only does what men want it to do

    Well, let's apply Tony to history: "If Germans voting leads to a state that wants to kill all the Jews, then killing all the Jews more accurately represents the will of the governed."

    Just because "the governed" want something doesn't make it right, and it doesn't usually even achieve its purported goals.

    Hence, male-dominated (and, even more-so, white-dominated) libertarianism, will turn out a politics that is woefully insufficient to address the full spectrum of concerns of human beings.

    Quite correct. Libertarianism doesn't pretend to "address the full spectrum of concerns of human beings"; that's the domain of fascists, progressives, socialists, communists, and the Catholic church. When they get into power, they usually start off by some combination of policies like sending unbelievers and homosexuals into camps, sterilizing minorities or those judged to be inferior, and destroying the economy, and they go downhill from there.

    Libertarians just say that if you want your concerns addressed, you should get together with like-minded individuals and do it yourself.

  • Tony||

    "If Germans voting leads to a state that wants to kill all the Jews, then killing all the Jews more accurately represents the will of the governed."

    Surely you must see that the point is pluralism and the pragmatic benefits it offers, which is why it is good not only to give half the population the franchise when it didn't have it before, it is also good to secure the rights of minorities to have a voice. No liberal is unaware of the threat majorities pose to minorities. We're the ones who talk about it all the time, and you're the ones who bitch about how bad white hetero men have it. Give me a fucking break.

    Libertarianism doesn't pretend to "address the full spectrum of concerns of human beings"

    Of course it does. Your prescriptions, even if they vary from person to person, are not open to alteration even after practical testing. It is dogma. You are just calling it freedom. People are certainly not free in your regime to enact a robust national welfare state, are they? Even if that's what they want to do. You place extreme limits on what people can do collectively. It is every bit an ideological imposition as fascism, religions, and authoritarian communism. If you disagree, explain how libertarianism deals with the fact that voting publics will never willingly buy what you're selling? Then explain what you would do about that.

  • PM||

    People are certainly not free in your regime to enact a robust national welfare state, are they?

    Lol. "Regime".

    People would certainly be free under a libertarian "regime" to enact whatever national welfare state they desired, so long as it was voluntary. The problem you inevitably run into with a voluntary welfare collective is that very few people will bother contributing unless they have a gun pointed at their head. The ability to point guns at other people's heads and coerce them into doing what you want is not liberty. If your ideas are so panty-dropping to the general population, you wouldn't need to point guns at their heads, and no libertarian would have a problem with you doing whatever you like.

    explain how libertarianism deals with the fact that voting publics will never willingly buy what you're selling?

    Advocacy for their position? Kinda like every other political movement?

    Then explain what you would do about that.

    Advocacy for their position? It's hilarious. You're so fucking married to your fascist ideology (All within the state, nothing outside the state, nothing against the state) that the concept of not going out and doing violence against other people to achieve your ends just never even fucking occurs to you as a possibility.

  • Tony||

    We have enacted a welfare state without pointing a gun at anybody. Or are you using that as hyperbole to describe taxation for programs you personally don't like?

  • triclops||

    What happens to people who don't pay their taxes (excluding those who buy indulgences from Democratic politicians, of course.)?

    Tony says that the problem with libertarianism is that people won't be free to force others to do things. Makes sense!

  • ||

    the people underrepresented in the tech industry are people without tech skills, and there are still probably too many of them. cough HR dept cough

  • ashdex||

    "...Sir Tim Hunt, whose ill-conceived joke about women..."

    Why did the author feel it was necessary to add "ill-conceived" here? The perceived need to add a disclaimer or apology in a reference to a comment you are reporting on is part of the same hysteria that created this latest version of the lynch mob/witch hunt mentality.

  • triclops||

    Because no one wants to be the next sacrifice. I cannot blame even Reason writers for this.
    I would spout a small measure of BS to protect my ability to provide for my family.

  • ashdex||

    "...Sir Tim Hunt, whose ill-conceived joke about women..."

    Why did the author feel it was necessary to add "ill-conceived" here? The perceived need to add a disclaimer or apology in a reference to a comment you are reporting on is part of the same hysteria that created this latest version of the lynch mob/witch hunt mentality.

  • BambiB||

    I guess it's time to actively discriminate against the libtards - male or female.

    Never. Ever. Hire one.

  • jdgalt||

    How do we identify them in time?

  • ant1sthenes||

    Given that it's mostly about social signalling, it shouldn't be too difficult to coax it out of them.

  • bacon-magic||

    Tony is over-represented on here. I hope our female overlords will obliterate his genetic code from the gene pool.

  • ant1sthenes||

    I think he can handle that himself...

  • jdgalt||

    I suggest that whenever such "shamings" take place, our side should publish the names of the complainers and anyone else largely responsible for the "shaming" so that we, the public, can choose to shame them instead. Let them suffer the same kinds of consequences they attempt to inflict on their targets.

    This is already starting to happen to false accusers of rape. And that's a very good thing.

  • Seamus||

    This is already starting to happen to false accusers of rape. And that's a very good thing.

    You mean like Jackie C****** at UVa? (I can't actually bring myself to spell out her name, because I have a very strong suspicion that she's mentally disturbed and therefore not responsible for her own actions.)

  • AlmightyJB||

    Dude sounds like a kindred spirit. Hope things work out for him. Seems like a smart guy. I had never heard about any of this. Surprised employer's are taking it so seriously. Can't have people with non-retarded opinions working for you though. That would be terrible.

  • FYTW||

    I'd just like to note for the record that Anil Dash is a profoundly stupid asshole whose prominence in tech culture is utterly baffling.

  • AlmightyJB||

    Never heard of him

  • Rockabilly||

    They claim to celebrate diversity - but only those thoughts, actions, and deeds, agreed to by central committee.

  • triclops||

    Diversity only on the surface.

  • empujador||

    This guy is a pretty lousy poster boy. It's not like he said uncooth things in private that got revealed by the people he trusted, or had his Twitter account dug up by someone who had a bone to pick with him in another forum.

    No, with all those skeletons in his twitter closet, posted under his real-life name, he actually got into a pointless argument with a feminist ON TWITTER ITSELF, where his opponent had immediate access to his entire tweet history. Whether I think he's sexist or not, I sure as hell wouldn't want somebody that reckless anywhere near running my business. It is unfortunate that he probably can't even get an engineer-level job either, since nobody's willing to risk the potential bad PR if he's discovered working for them in any capacity, but that's the price of doing stupid shit. He played with fire and got burned.

  • PM||

    Yeah, I mean, if you've got nothing to hide, then you have no reason to worry, amirite?

    The thing is, nobody actually gives a runny shit about anything this guy said. We all have to pretend to be righteously outraged because these are the kinds of things that proper people get righteously outraged about. Nobody owes this guy a living, but nobody owes it to a literal handful of whinging perpetually-aggrieved twats to ensure he never works again to satisfy their hate boners either. It's a fucking clown show.

  • Chuck in CR||

    When uttering a Libertarian Macho Flash was made punishable.

  • cpk||

    What I can't understand about the libertarian outrage about "mob justice" via social media is that a writer for a magazine with the tagline "free minds and free markets" can't figure out that this situation is almost the Platonic ideal of an unregulated free market in action. To the letter.

    There's NO government influence here. It's people, speaking their minds to other people, and choosing to not spend their money on companies hiring Pax Dickinson, and choosing not to invest in companies associating with Pax Dickinson.

    How can any libertarian be opposed to this development without undermining their own philosophy? You should be CELEBRATING this development, because it's a PERFECT expression of an unregulated market.

  • Steveowalk||

    We constantly hear and advise kids to be careful what they post online, as it is there for life.
    We all understand how things can be taken out of context, particularly in a world of tweets with 140 chars.
    Pax is a grown man, who has achieved great career success.....where was his common sense when posting online?
    We live in a world where some people believe freedom of speech is a free for all, with no consequences, to people who get upset at the slightest comment or where someone disagrees.....one side is no better than they other.
    I would trust that each of us, including Pax, use their brains and use social media to their advantage.
    This is a text book example of what can go wrong when a seemingly smart person makes a bad choice.

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