November 22, 2013

Latest Girl Power icon to surface in media promoting women in STEM is hot babe with great hair

Debbie Sterling, CEO of GoldieBlox
From the NYT:
Ad Takes Off Online: Less Doll, More Awl 
By CLAIRE CAIN MILLER 
Who said girls want to dress in pink and play with dolls, especially when they could be building Rube Goldberg machines instead? 
That is the message of a video that has gone viral, viewed more than 6.4 million times since it was posted Monday on YouTube — an ad for GoldieBlox, a start-up toy company that sells games and books to encourage girls to become engineers. 
In the ad, three girls are bored watching princesses in pink on TV. So they grab a tool kit, goggles and hard hats and set to work building a machine that sends pink teacups and baby dolls flying through the house, using umbrellas, ladders and, of course, GoldieBlox toys. 
The ad has become a hot topic of conversation on social media, generating discussion about a much broader issue: the dearth of women in the technology and engineering fields, where just a quarter of technical jobs are held by women. 
“I’ve been so excited to watch this wave,” said Rachel Sklar, an advocate for women in technology and co-founder of TheLi.st, a digital media company for women. “It really does highlight that this gap is not that little girls aren’t interested in it, it really is a function of ‘you can’t be what you can’t see.’” 
Cindy Gallop, who started the United States branch of Bartle Bogle Hegarty, the advertising agency, said the ad also illustrated how advertising created by and for women and girls is powerful because women share so frequently on social media and control most purchases. Yet ad agencies are predominantly men, she said, and the men in ads are generally heroic and funny while women are sidekicks or homemakers. 
“I tell marketers and the ad industry, ‘When you want a video to go viral, this is what you do, you talk to women and girls and you talk to them in the right kind of way,’” Ms. Gallop said. “This ad is the absolute paradigm.” 
The ad is set to the tune of “Girls” by the Beastie Boys, a decidedly anti-feminist ballad with lyrics that the ad’s creators rewrote. 
The Beastie Boys sang, “Girls to do the dishes/Girls to clean up my room/Girls to do the laundry/Girls and in the bathroom/Girls, that’s all I really want is girls.” 
One of the actresses in the ad sings: “Girls build a spaceship/Girls code the new app/Girls that grow up knowing/That they can engineer that/Girls, that’s all we really need is girls/To bring us up to speed it’s girls/Our opportunity is girls/Don’t underestimate girls.” 
“I thought back to my childhood with the princesses and the ponies and wondered why construction toys and math and science kits are for boys,” Debbie Sterling, founder and chief executive of GoldieBlox, said in an interview. “We wanted to create a cultural shift and close the gender gap and fill some of these jobs that are growing at the speed of light.” 
In 2010, women earned just 18 percent of computer science degrees, down from 37 percent in 1985, according to the National Center for Women and Information Technology. Analysts say the low numbers are partly because girls are not encouraged to pursue science as often or as enthusiastically as boys. 
Ms. Sterling started the company two years ago, after graduating with a degree in product design from the mechanical engineering department at Stanford, where she was disappointed that there were not more women in her classes. She then worked in design and marketing. 
Brett Doar
... Brett Doar, an artist who specializes in making machines, created the Rube Goldberg machine.

Have you ever noticed that basically everything you are supposed to believe in these days -- feminism, diversity, etc. -- turns out in practice to just be another way for hot babes, rich guys, super salesmen, cunning financiers, telegenic self-promoters, and charismatic politicians to get even more money and power?

125 comments:

Maxwell Power said...

Feminism is globocapitalism's handmaiden, yes

Anonymous said...

It will ever be thus. Hot [young] girls can get media attention. You need a hook of course. The financial types and all the rest, well it depends on their access to the rulers in D.C. There is no tech company, investment bank, drug company, physician association, lawyer association, manufacturer, etc without a Washington K St. office.

Dave Pinsen said...

Here's a bit more on Cindy Gallop. She and Rachel Sklar are frequently quoted gadflies on this topic. But here's a question I don't recall any reporters asking them: why don't female founders hire more female techies?

For example, one female founded startup that has gotten a lot of attention recently is Alexa von Tobel's gals' financial education company, LearnVest. Can't find it at the moment, but Business Insider ran a slide show of a launch day for some new app at LearnVest HQ. The programmers were the typical white male neck beards and some Indian guys. Something tells me Cindy and Rachel aren't breathing down Alexa's neck about that.

DYork said...

In 2010, women earned just 18 percent of computer science degrees, down from 37 percent in 1985, according to the National Center for Women and Information Technology. Analysts say the low numbers are partly because girls are not encouraged to pursue science as often or as enthusiastically as boys.

It doesn't matter White ladies. The people who run this country want to import as many South Asian and East Asian MALES as possible to do these jobs and anyone who resists is a White racist xenophobe.

So better focus on that liberal arts/marketing/communications degree.

Anonymous said...

We wanted to create a cultural shift and close the gender gap and fill some of these jobs that are growing at the speed of light.

Which jobs are those? Government jobs? I thought most of those are already going to the ladies anyway.

Bill said...

It isn't just at the very top, either. When you see a cute young woman with a divorce lawyer in action against your typical chump husband it's like watching a couple professional boxers pummel some random guy on the street.

Or how about HR (which is typically 80% female these days) wrecking unions by saying they are replacing the workforce with another crew for half the cost to "promote diversity?" Can't argue against "diversity" now, can you? What are you, a sexist and a racist? Better to lose your job or take a pay cut than to be such a villain...

All this "progressive" BS is nothing more than a half-assed excuse for outright predatory behavior.

Unanimous said...

"Have you ever noticed that basically everything you are supposed to believe in these days -- feminism, diversity, etc. -- turns out in practice to just be another way for hot babes, rich guys, super salesmen, cunning financiers, telegenic self-promoters, and charismatic politicians to get even more money and power?"

Winner, winner, chicken dinner!

Anonymous said...

http://www.nybooks.com/articles/archives/2013/dec/05/surprising-empress/

"In the mid-1950s, when I was a graduate student of Chinese history, the Manchu Empress Dowager Cixi (1835–1908) was invariably condemned as a reactionary hate figure; Mao Zedong was admired."

Mao was admired.

So, leading scholars in American institutions admired a totalitarian communist in the 1950s.

And they tell us that anti-communists had nothing to worry about.

Anonymous said...

"Have you ever noticed that basically everything you are supposed to believe in these days -- feminism, diversity, etc. -- turns out in practice to just be another way for hot babes, rich guys, super salesmen, cunning financiers, telegenic self-promoters, and charismatic politicians to get even more money and power?"

Has it always been this way?

SFG said...

https://www.facebook.com/TheNewJew

She does appear to be Jewish, though I have to say I can't consider convincing girls to be engineers to be *that* malignant. Feminism in general yes, given its attack on the traditional family, but I don't really see how the world is harmed by a few more Curies out there.

Harry Baldwin said...

Yet ad agencies are predominantly men, she said, and the men in ads are generally heroic and funny while women are sidekicks or homemakers.

Said Cindy Gallop, reporting from an alternate reality where it is still 1962. I work in advertising and most agencies are roughly 50-50 male and female at every level all the way to the top. Also, where has she seen these ads where the men are cool heroes and the women submissive homemakers? It must be on that channel where the white guys are smarter than the black guys and have to explain things to them.

Anonymous said...

Have you ever noticed that basically everything you are supposed to believe in these days -- feminism, diversity, etc. -- turns out in practice to just be another way for hot babes, rich guys, super salesmen, cunning financiers, telegenic self-promoters, and charismatic politicians to get even more money and power?

An astute observation!

Of course, this is true only of moral and philosophical beliefs such as PC-AA. Good old amoral, value-free technology may well turn the table the other way.

agnostic said...

Girls who were at the peak of earning computer science degrees in 1985 were born around 1964, and were in elementary school until about 1975.

So we just need to air re-runs of Scooby Doo, The Monkees, and Josie and the Pussycats.

There was no widespread Grrl Power crap in the media back then, yet they grew up to represent twice as much of the CS grad population as today's girls.

Maybe encouraging young people's curiosity had a stronger effect on getting them to pursue CS than frightening them into following the woman-in-charge's orders about what she ought to notice and take an interest in?

Harry Baldwin said...

Will someone please explain why Debbie Sterling overlooked that giant talent pool of women who love tinkering and building gadgets to hire someguy named Brett Doar to build her Rube Goldberg contraption?

Also, I can't help wondering if Ms Sterling has a
sexy pirate costume.

Anonymous said...

I’m a woman and a mom, and I don’t buy this. I noticed, and I believe any parent who has had both male and female babies has noticed, that my children naturally gravitated towards certain toys and preferences, from the earliest age. I never shoved a doll into my daughter’s hands, nor a lego set into my sons’; in fact, both my husband and I made a conscious effort not to do that – didn’t make any difference. They would all play with anything sometimes, but, left to their own choices, my daughter preferred traditionally feminine playthings, and my sons both went for traditionally masculine toys. The sea of purple and pink in any toy store girls’ section is specifically designed that way, due to massive amounts of research regarding what little girls prefer. I get that traditional boys toys have not been marketed to girls; thus the Goldiblox engaging “story”, girly colors and shapes, but I don’t agree with the “can’t be what you can’t see” reasoning. Many boys don’t see their fathers taking apart motors or building things, and most young children have no idea what the mysterious world of work is. As a teacher, I also call foul on girls not being encouraged to go into sciences. Any girl who shows any serious predilection for math or science is pushed and encouraged every step of the way. However, engineering just isn't top of most girls' interest lists, and Goldiblox notwithstanding, I predict that mechanical engineering classes will never be teeming with female students.

Old fogey said...

Everything you need to know about the truth underlying the concept of the ad campaign is expressed in the last paragraph of the article: " ... Brett Doar, an artist who specializes in making machines, created the Rube Goldberg machine [portrayed in the report as something created by the girls].

Jokah Macpherson said...

I see, I see. The actual engineering for the commercial was done by not a girl.

Truth said...

"Have you ever noticed that basically everything you are supposed to believe in these days -- feminism, diversity, etc. -- turns out in practice to just be another way for hot babes, rich guys, super salesmen, cunning financiers, telegenic self-promoters, and charismatic politicians to get even more money and power?"

Probably the best paragraph you've ever written.

Anonymous said...

I see they have touched all the bases in their commercial. Not only have they pushed the feminist agenda, they managed to cover the mulitcult angle too.

Anonymous said...

Interesting paradox, and how do these girls expect to wield their power by gaining all these STEM based jobs when sooooo many of these jobs are going to illegals ER H1B visas?

Hmm...and therein lies the rub of which they have not thought thru.

Or in other words "Americans aren't really qualified to do these STEM based jobs, er....except for women, yeah! Women can do these jobs, sure of course!"

But American men (who according to the NYT article receive roughly 83% of the graduating degrees in tech related fields) can't do the same jobs at the same level of competence? Women can, but men can't unless they're from abroad.

How's that work out in practice?

Anonymous said...

Market turmoil. Keep the surface moving, expose opportunity.

Neil Templeton

ben tillman said...

...GoldieBlox, a start-up toy company that sells games and books to encourage girls to become engineers.

No, they sell toys to make money.

Anonymous said...

Truth said: Probably the best paragraph you've ever written.

Well, Truth, we're on a roll. That's possibly the best sentence you've ever written.

Anonymous said...

>>"ben tillman said...
...GoldieBlox, a start-up toy company that sells games and books to encourage girls to become engineers.

No, they sell toys to make money."





And at that, bet anyone 3-1 that the vast majority of parents buy these games and books for their little BOYS and SONS. Not daughters.

Thursday said...

Have you ever noticed that basically everything you are supposed to believe in these days -- feminism, diversity, etc. -- turns out in practice to just be another way for hot babes, rich guys, super salesmen, cunning financiers, telegenic self-promoters, and charismatic politicians to get even more money and power?

We are in a weird moment. I don't think that people are being cynical or insincere when they affirm liberal sentiments. It's just that feminism, diversity etc. conflict so much with reality that they simply can't be put into practice. So, if you're a liberal pol, you buy off a few interest groups and loot the store.

On the other hand, conservatives sometimes get into power when the liberals screw up too badly or get too corrupt. But any actual solutions that could be implemented would involve contradicting the public's basically liberal sentiments. So, your might as well loot the store.

Anyway you squeeze the orange, it's going to involve corruption.

Maya said...

"Have you ever noticed that basically everything you are supposed to believe in these days -- feminism, diversity, etc. -- turns out in practice to just be another way for hot babes, rich guys, super salesmen, cunning financiers, telegenic self-promoters, and charismatic politicians to get even more money and power"

Has nothing to do with feminism, diversity or anything about "these days". Capitalism, communism, Catholicism, Islam, Goth subculture, 5th grade or any other organization, philosophy or movement works out much better for those who have an optimal balance of good looks, charisma, brains and talents.

Zappostista said...

In the 70s hairy feminists tried to claim inspiration from Marxist precepts, but a 50-50 conflict fails the math of class warfare. Likewise diversity is a box-office winner, though impossible to take seriously as the best way of getting anything done. Another standby is the notion of a "youth movement." These are all fine methods of selling beer and deodorant to the public.

Anonymous said...

A lot of these "tech"/web 2.0/social media companies aren't really tech companies. They're just ditzy media companies. TV on your computer basically. Here's a good example. Yahoo's female CEO just hired Katie Couric to anchor a show on their webpage:

http://www.businessinsider.com/katie-couric-is-leaving-abc-for-yahoo-2013-11

CJ said...

Yet ad agencies are predominantly men, she said, and the men in ads are generally heroic and funny while women are sidekicks or homemakers.

How can a sentient being read that sentence and not be struck by the utter falsity of every component?

star_momak said...

Your use of the images of Sterling, on the one hand, and Doar on the other, is worthy of a semiotic analysis by Eco.

Podsnap said...

Have you ever noticed that basically everything you are supposed to believe in these days -- feminism, diversity, etc. -- turns out in practice to just be another way for hot babes, rich guys, super salesmen, cunning financiers, telegenic self-promoters, and charismatic politicians to get even more money and power?

A lot of fat, ugly, queer and mud coloured people have noticed this as well, and they're angry as hell -

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Intersectionality

Anonymous said...

"Any girl who shows any serious predilection for math or science is pushed and encouraged every step of the way. However, engineering just isn't top of most girls' interest lists, and Goldiblox notwithstanding, I predict that mechanical engineering classes will never be teeming with female students."

My sister-in-law won a University Medal upon completion of her Engineering Degree. She spent the next decade being flown around the world as an attractive modern face for a multinational company. After having children she retrained to be a school teacher. Now she's earning each month what she once earned in one week. She's happy, my brother tears his hair out.

Anonymous said...

>> you can’t be what you can’t see

If you can't see what others cannot see, you will never be an inventor.

Anonymous said...

Ms. Sterling started the company two years ago, after graduating with a degree in product design from the mechanical engineering department at Stanford, where she was disappointed that there were not more women in her classes. She then worked in design and marketing.

So like so many other American women who studied engineering, she quickly abandoned the profession.

Being an advocate for more girls in engineering turns out to be much more fun than actually dealing with all those icky equations and boring computer code.

Feminists like the idea of women in engineering infinitely more than they like actual engineering.

Anonymous said...

Focus on gender is to prevent focus on race.

Lots on white women in engineering in non-Anglophone non-PC countries, many even get dirty at work.

sunbeam said...

I think a lot of people in the world have a mistaken idea of what it takes, or the kind of aptitude you need to be an an engineer. Of any sort honestly.

Look that kid who tears apart everything he can? Likes to build things? Fascinated by tools?

Well that is almost irrelevant to what you actually study in an engineering school. It's all very mathematical and abstract. Oh sure sometimes you hear people buzzing about hands-on, and some school or another has some "innovative" course where students get funky in the shop with some kind of design project.

But at the end of the day it's a pretty abstract things. Vector Mechanics, Differential Equations, Linear Algebra for Civil, Mechanical, and Aerospace Engineers. Thermodynamics, Chemistry, their evil illegitimate son Physical Chemistry, Linear Algrebra, Differential Equations, Vector Mechanics, Organic Chemistry, etc for Chemical Engineers.

Really being good with your hands is of no help whatsoever with the kind of things you actually study in an Engineering School.

Being oriental has much stronger correlation with being good at it, than playing with the kind of things this lady is promoting.

And you absolutely do not want a Mechanical Engineering graduate to work on your car. You want that kid that took shop classes and smoked a lot of pot for that.

Big Bill said...

You really must go to "The Last Psychiatrist" and read the deconstruction of the "viral" Dove Beauty Bar advert to appreciate what is going on here.

Ask yourself what is the real product?

Who is supposed to be "buying" the product?

Who is doing the selling?

Anonymous said...

Lionel tried that in the 50s by selling pink trains. Antique roadshow features a recipient that played with it exactly once.

Lionel Girls Train Set, ca. 1957
http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/roadshow/archive/201103A53.html

Big Bill said...

I don't recall any reporters asking them: why don't female founders hire more female techies?

You are too male in your perspective. The point is to seek young upper income white soccer moms on empowering their daughters so they can become a young/sexy/beautiful 8 like the CEO.

I immediately think about all the poor female lab rat post-docs I have known over the years who wind up working in a lab with a few male bio geeks and wonder what the hell happened to them along the way.

No husband, no kids, no interesting coworkers, and (worst of all) no tenure track.

The Anti-Gnostic said...

-- feminism, diversity, etc. -- turns out in practice to just be another way for hot babes, rich guys ... to get even more money and power?

I submit there's another angle here as well. So many things high-profile women do strike me as just elaborate personal ads. Debbie Sterling is spending a great deal of money and man-, er, woman-hours demonstrating what a hot wife and fantastic mother she would make.

Another example - rhythmic gymnastics. An entire "sport" for women to advertise their potential for elaborate lovemaking.

(And, I feel compelled to add, the linked pic is not porn. And it raises obliquely a whole other issue with feminism. All feminism seems to do is raise the stakes and make things more brutally competitive for women in all sorts of areas.)

Anonymous said...

I remember remarking negatively about the price of tires of a friend of mine's Porche. They were $750 apiece, and lasted 45K miles.

My friend said, "I can take a turn at 80 miles an hour, with no tire squeal or slippage, that would make your car's tires and squeal and slip at 45 miles an hour. That's why they cost that that much.

Furthermore, Porche isn't a car, like average people think of cars. Porche is a philosophy. You're either down with it, or you're not. You either "get it," or you don't. Explaining the price of the car, or it's accessories, to people who will never "get it," is a waste of time."

It's the same thing with engineering. You're either down with it from the get-go, or you're not. You don't need to be sold, you only need to be shown.

Since engineering is essentially about manipulating objects for a predetermined result, engineering opportunities are all around you. Toys aren't necessary to the mind of a true engineer.

You either are an engineer, or you ain't. It's a state of mind. It's an intrinsic philosophy. Trying to sell kids who aren't down with it from the get-go is a waste of time. If you can do it, you don't need prescribed toys. If you can't, toys won't help you.

astorian said...

,i.Yet ad agencies are predominantly men, she said, and the men in ads are generally heroic and funny while women are sidekicks or homemakers.</i.

I'm 52, and as long as I've been watching TV, men in commercials have been portrayed as bumbling idiots who can't find their socks without help from their infinitely smarter wives.

Any Dad in a commercial who tries to make breakfast for the kids is going to burn down the house. If he tries to do the laundry, the garage will be end up filled with suds.

Commercials have made WOMEN seem omnicompetent and men seem moronic since the dawn of television. Which is only rational on the part of advertisers, since they know women make most of the purchases.

Chubby Ape said...

Yet ad agencies are predominantly men, she said, and the men in ads are generally heroic and funny while women are sidekicks or homemakers.

When was the last time this person watched TV, the late '70s perhaps?

I wouldn't mind these girls' toys if the whole ad campaign didn't have such a hostile tone. Why in the hell can't they encourage girls to move beyond the princess stuff without the "up yours patriarchy tone"?

I have to wonder too where they get off claiming that it's men who want girls to grow up to be little shopaholic princesses?

freudwasrightaboutafewthings said...

" The ad was directed by the Academy, a group of filmmakers in Los Angeles. Brett Doar, an artist who specializes in making machines, created the Rube Goldberg machine."

Five of the six directors of the Academy are male.

Brett Doar is a guy.

Look it up.

The first comment to the NY Times article is spot on.

"As an aside from the gender discussion, I would not recommend the profession. It has become greatly commoditized, the competition is ferocious, it is undervalued, it is not highly respected, and client expectations are out of control."

This is not an aside - it goes to the heart of the matter.

This country really is run by loons.

SFG said...

The Beastie Boys, BTW, were being ironic initially, with songs like 'Fight For Your Right To Party'. Then, of course, they became successful and had to run with it. It's sort of like the way Prussian Blue used to sing 'Tomorrow Belongs to Me'.

Anonymous said...

Well, diversity seems to be strength at McDonald's.

Anonymous said...

Will someone please explain why Debbie Sterling overlooked that giant talent pool of women who love tinkering and building gadgets to hire someguy named Brett Doar to build her Rube Goldberg contraption?


Never mind that talent pool, why didn't engineer Sterling build the device herself? Too busy fussing with her hair, no doubt.

Anonymous said...

My teenage daughter loves computer programming and robotics. It's the best thing ever, because it keeps her away from the incredibly malignant, hypersexualized popular culture that's pushed at girls today.

Maybe if they want to get more girls into STEM, they should push that message to parents: it'll keep your daughter from being a Kardashian!

Anonymous said...

...I have to say I can't consider convincing girls to be engineers to be *that* malignant. Feminism in general yes, given its attack on the traditional family, but I don't really see how the world is harmed by a few more Curies out there.

If the taxpayers invest money in trying to push girls into being Curies and no Curies appear, that's a waste of people's money. If women are pushed into college majors or jobs they can't handle, that hurts them and the rest of us, especially if men who would have been productive in those college slots and job slots were pushed out of them and end up doing something else for which they are less well suited.

Assistant Village Idiot said...

You'll be able to pick up these Goldiblox cheap at yard sales in about five years.

Anonymous said...

"Ms. Sterling started the company two years ago, after graduating with a degree in product design from the mechanical engineering department at Stanford, where she was disappointed that there were not more women in her classes. She then worked in design and marketing."

I have now read this three times and gone to Ms. Sterling's LinkedIn Page. She lists a 2005 degree from Stanford, without identifying whether it is a B.A. or B.S. She lists her first two jobs as "Brand Strategist" and "Marketing Director".

I admit to knowing nothing about a degree in product design. Am I, however, the only one thinking that Ms. Sterling is, in fact, NOT an engineer?

Steve From Detroit

benning said...

I also noticed that they didn't interview any girls. Just adult women. Hmm ... I guess they're tired of making sammiches? ;)

Anonymous said...

In my experience there are some competent women engineers but very few who look like Ms Sterling. These typically change careers/ majors, get promoted, married,

Engineering can be rewarding, however it is typically demanding. Can take long hours, and it requires you to frequently deliver unpopular information to managers, schedule-makers, and business types; representing the physical universe to people who live in a world of image and wishful thinking.

Anonymous said...

I think 'hot babe with great hair' is a big effusive. She's not launching a thousand ships or startups or tech careers anytime soon. And for my money the only truly beautiful hair is long curly black/dark brown hair. She's got stuff that looks like you might snake out of a drain.

Anonymous said...

http://www.frontporchrepublic.com/2013/11/28807/

Anonymous said...

why don't female founders hire more female techies?

Had the makers of the Nancy Drew computer game hired more female coders would it have sold more?

Anonymous said...

Said Cindy Gallop, reporting from an alternate reality where it is still 1962. I work in advertising and most agencies are roughly 50-50 male and female at every level all the way to the top. Also, where has she seen these ads where the men are cool heroes and the women submissive homemakers? It must be on that channel where the white guys are smarter than the black guys and have to explain things to them

No kidding, if anything TV ads usually feature the " Stupid Man!!!" moment anytime both men and women are featured unless it's for erectile dysfunction drugs. My cousin coined the term, and it's evident even for ads running during heavy male oriented programming like college and pro football, and of course the Stupid Man is always white and clearly straight, usually the doofus husband being told the facts about the product by his wife or precocious teenage daughter.

Anonymous said...

That commercial? Directed by a man. The fun Rube Goldberg device? Built by a man: http://www.fastcocreate.com/3021960/behind-goldieblox-amazing-beastie-girls-debut-ad :


"In the spot directed by The Academy's Sean Pecknold and shot over two days in early November, three little girls kick off an impressive Rube Goldberg machine created by Brett Doar, as the lyrics cheer on ditching the pink princess trap and embracing their brains. "Girls! To build a spaceship/Girls! To code a new app/Girls! To grow up knowing they can engineer that/Girls!""

Gubbler of the Society of Reformed Chechenistics said...

"Who said girls want to dress in pink and play with dolls, especially when they could be building Rube Goldberg machines instead?"

Why, that is so sexist, this notion that girls wanna dress in pink and play with dolls!!!

But if homo boys wanna do it, it is soooooo wonderful and cute, and we should encourage them to do so instead of learning about manly stuff.

Anonymous said...

Why "GoldieBlox" and not "GoldieBlocks?" "X" always evokes sex. "Goldiebox" would be a porno actress or movie.
Does she have herpes?

Anonymous said...

Have you ever noticed that basically everything you are supposed to believe in these days -- feminism, diversity, etc. -- turns out in practice to just be another way for hot babes, rich guys, super salesmen, cunning financiers, telegenic self-promoters, and charismatic politicians to get even more money and power?


D*&^%n Steve, next you'll be suggesting that the economy grow organically by innovation, increases in efficiency, and technical and scientific advances.

No, no! How can that assure the economy grows fast enough for all the interest to be paid so we can get rich by flipping paper? Or fast enough to make us all rich right now?

The only way is to multiply the market size by immigration; conquer new markets, by military force if necessary; and extract more money from the population.

Just think if you had income from high-interest credit cards belonging to every person in the world! Surely you see it's worth it for you to sell out. Get with the program and there just might be rewards.

Felix said...

Have you ever noticed that basically everything you are supposed to believe in these days -- feminism, diversity, etc. -- turns out in practice to just be another way for hot babes, rich guys, super salesmen, cunning financiers, telegenic self-promoters, and charismatic politicians to get even more money and power?

Way to go Steve. Pay no attention to the _______ behind the curtain.

David said...

>Have you ever noticed that basically everything you are supposed to believe in these days -- feminism, diversity, etc. -- turns out in practice to just be another way for [hustlers] to get even more money and power?<

One would almost think it's intentional.

jack strocchi said...

Have you ever noticed that basically everything you are supposed to believe in these days -- feminism, diversity, etc. -- turns out in practice to just be another way for hot babes, rich guys, super salesmen, cunning financiers, telegenic self-promoters, and charismatic politicians to get even more money and power?

Post-modern liberalism is an ideology in an advanced state of decomposition. So expect a lot of maggots to feed off the rotting corpse.


Po-mo liberalism (in its economic, ethnic & estrogenic domains) benefits a minority of minorities against the majority of the majority. Elites love it because it lets them get away with murder in the name of liberty, equity and diversity.

In reality it is traditional conservative authoritarian institutions that protect the interests of the boring and unhip populace. That is to say, unions protect the economic populace, churches protect the estrogenic populace and the military is supposed to protect the ethnic populace.

But who wants to defend the traditional role of organizations that cater to losers.

heartiste said...

Why "GoldieBlox" and not "GoldieBlocks?" "X" always evokes sex.

Substituting the 'X' for the 'ck' is the uncool person's idea of coolness. Lowest common denominator hipness, if you will.

Mr. Anon said...

"In 2010, women earned just 18 percent of computer science degrees, down from 37 percent in 1985, according to the National Center for Women and Information Technology. Analysts say the low numbers are partly because girls are not encouraged to pursue science as often or as enthusiastically as boys."

Were they encouraged less in 2010 than in 1985? So 1985 was "The" year for women? They should have just stopped there while they were ahead? All that "Year of the Woman" stuff we were bombarded with in 1992 - that was just the down-slope? Grrrl Power? Slut Power? These are manifestations of the new patriarchy?

What complete and utter BS. That paragraph was not just nonsense; it was a bald-faced lie.

Mr. Anon said...

"Cindy Gallop, who started the United States branch of Bartle Bogle Hegarty, the advertising agency, said the ad also illustrated how advertising created by and for women and girls is powerful because women share so frequently on social media and control most purchases. Yet ad agencies are predominantly men, she said, and the men in ads are generally heroic and funny while women are sidekicks or homemakers."

Yeah, and the men all wear hats and smoke pipes while they exert their avuncular, yet oppressive, patriarchal power! As another poster pointed out, this women apparently lives in the year 1958.

Cindy Gallop, by the way, is the presenter of one of the most popular TED talks. In it, this dessicated old hag, who sleeps around with 20-something men, bemoans how pornography has altered the perceptions and desires of men, and has ruined her empowered slut-life. Gosh! You mean that what people see and hear might influence them!? That must be a real surprise to an advertising executive like Cindy Gallop! Congratulations, Ms. Gallop (fitting name, by the way)! You are now living in the world you helped create. Enjoy!

Mr. Anon said...

This is Debbie Sterling's capsule bio from LinkedIn:

Debra Sterling

Founder / CEO at GoldieBlox
San Francisco Bay Area | Consumer Goods
Current: Founder / CEO at GoldieBlox
Past: Marketing Director at Lori Bonn Design, Inc., Brand Strategist at Hornall Anderson
Education: Stanford University

Evidently, Debbie Sterling doesn't want to be an engineer either.

Anonymous said...

The truth is that women aren’t engineers because they don’t like tech things - they like people things. Nature is nature - woman’s brains are wired for people things - end of story.

This woman is a perfect example of this - she has a very expensive chemical engendering degree from Stanford - so what does she do with her tech degree - NOTHING - she takes a people based feminist path. Can she be an engineer - Yes - does she want to be an engineer - evidently NOT.

She is following her god given nature. The irony is palpable. She wants girls to be what she herself chooses not to be!

Anonymous said...

Education's already plenty feminized as it is & boys' dropout rates (HS & Univ.) testify to that. Look what Title 9 has done to hs & college sports for boys.
Some males might be able to produce milk to breastfeed a baby but it's unwise to devote a lot of resources looking for them - unless you really don't mind not getting much milk.

ildolo said...

Check it out, Steve - put a hot girl in your post and watch the comments soar! Hot girls works for everyone.

Anonymous said...

There was a tv show years ago called Crossing Jordan. The aforementioned Jordan was a female forensic pathologist . . . who was really hot! It didn't seem like the kind of profession that would allow her to leverage her beauty, but, as you can imagine, the tv account of forensic pathology was a bit disconnected with reality.

Anonymous said...

"The Beastie Boys sang, “Girls to do the dishes/Girls to clean up my room/Girls to do the laundry/Girls and in the bathroom..."

In the bathroom?! That's "bedroom", dearie.

Anonymous said...

She looks a bit like Kate Hudson, daughter of that quintessential girly-girl, Goldie Hawn.

Anonymous said...

Ms. Sterling started the company two years ago, after graduating with a degree in product design from the mechanical engineering department at Stanford, where she was disappointed that there were not more women in her classes. She then worked in design and marketing.

So she herself does not want to be an engineer (never working as one; probably not competitive enough) but she wants OTHERS to become engineers. Lovely. But the hair!

Jason said...

Just so that you know, there is a lot of Sailer-bait in George Will's most recent column about Obama: http://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/george-will-obamas-presidency-unravels-through-chaos-and-crisis/2013/11/22/57132e74-52de-11e3-a7f0-b790929232e1_story.html

Anonymous said...

>> It's all very mathematical and abstract

None - zero - of the math curriculum in an ABET-accredited engineering-degree program is abstract.

Virtually ALL of mathematics was invented to answer/solve real world, physical, tangible problems.

It's true that the origins of the math are never mentioned. That is the fault of math teachers.

For example, go check out Calculus: An Intuitive & Physical Approach. Amazon has it.

The world is full of books which approach math from a practical point of view.

Anonymous said...

Education's already plenty feminized as it is & boys' dropout rates (HS & Univ.) testify to that.

I wonder if the homeschooling rates are higher for boys than girls?

Anonymous said...

Money and sex is all there is. Everything else is negotiation.

Dave Pinsen said...

I met an attractive sales engineer in an airport once. I bet there are more where she came from. That's probably a good job for a tech-savvy oman as it combines tech and people skills.

Dave Pinsen said...

You're right about there being another angle, but in this case I think it's more of an employment ad than a personal ad. Being the founder of a startup - particularly one that fits a popular narrative - enables you to make connections with some wealthy and well-connected people. I know of at least one female entrepreneur (one who's met Cindy Gallop, IIRC) who landed a corporate gig at a Dow component company after her startup went bust.

Anonymous said...

Is anyone else of a certain age looking at this bold, new concept and seeing pastel Tinker Toys?

Anonymous said...

"Yet ad agencies are predominantly men, she said, and the men in ads are generally heroic and funny while women are sidekicks or homemakers.

Said Cindy Gallop, reporting from an alternate reality where it is still 1962"


Look at the below thread that documents the bashing of white males in commercials.

http://www.castefootball.us/forums/showthread.php/14243-Commercials-we-HATE!!!!

Anonymous said...

"Is anyone else of a certain age looking at this bold, new concept and seeing pastel Tinker Toys?"

When will we have tinkerbell toys?

Luke Lea said...

Haven't read it all yet but I am going to speculate that this is from The Onion.

Anonymous said...

Obviously Debbie Sterling was far too busy with her hair and makeup to do any engineering, which is why she gave that icky job to a man.

Anonymous said...

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/How_Girls_Can_Help_to_Build_Up_the_Empire

Harry Baldwin said...

I remember remarking negatively about the price of tires of a friend of mine's Porche.

Is a Porche a low-priced knock-off Porsche like that Scotch whisky they sell in China, "Johnnie Worker Black Labial"?

Maxwell Power said...

"Yet ad agencies are predominantly men, she said, and the men in ads are generally heroic and funny while women are sidekicks or homemakers.

Said Cindy Gallop, reporting from an alternate reality where it is still 1962"


This is the conventional wisdom thanks to a "critical mass" of Don Draper's low-info fans. Last year an Ogilvy & Mather veep during the 60s wrote a memoir indirectly debunking this, and she wasn't the only one to do so. It's a cottage industry now, with frequent NPR info-stories about Pioneering Women Ad Execs Of The Fifties-Sixties-Etc.

Anonymous said...

"In 2010, women earned just 18 percent of computer science degrees, down from 37 percent in 1985, according to the National Center for Women and Information Technology. Analysts say the low numbers are partly because girls are not encouraged to pursue science as often or as enthusiastically as boys."

Considering what I've seen in ten years as engineer, software developer and software architect I bet that half of that 18% are working in the peripheric areas of the effort. In marketing, management and human resources. That's exactly what I saw. In two different coutries, indeed.

The cause? They don't like the work. That's understandable, given its harshness. Many times I want to abandon too. Most women cannot stand it. They deeply dislike the thing. And all the "encouragement" of the World is not going to change anything.

Luke Lea said...

@ podnatp - From the talk page to that Wikipedia article on Intersectionalism:

"Needs a critique section[edit]

As a white male who surfs through life on my privilege oppressing all I meet unconsciously, I demand, as anyone who lives life atop the pyramid would, that this article needs a critique section.

I do appreciate the article, as it seems to say that Intersectionality is a way to put a partial ordering on the oppression wars (I am more oppressed than you!).

Who is more oppressed, a fat white male retard in a wheelchair or say, a female african american secretary of state?

With Intersectionality, I now understand why it's the latter and not the former."

Anonymous said...

Being oriental has much stronger correlation with being good at it, than playing with the kind of things this lady is promoting.

Historically being one of those boring white males has an even stronger correlation; almost all the engineers in the industrial revolution that made the modern world were those loser stupid white men.

I'd bet a small cup of coffee that being good at chess (or potentially good at chess) correlates with being good at engineering. Have you noticed who the current world chess champion is? Women do play chess, but it doesn't seem they are drawn to it so much.

Sometimes these "oriental engineering" references/nods seem a lot like all those stupid-men-moment advertisements. Lots of people can make good engineers. Notwithstanding, the engineering field was essentially built by white males being very white male-ish.

Foreign Expert said...

Has anyone thought the unthinkable thought that some of the problem with healthcare.gov is that there are women at the top of the totem pole? Their eyes glaze over when the conversation turns to tech stuff, maybe.

Anonymous said...

I'd bet a small cup of coffee that being good at chess (or potentially good at chess) correlates with being good at engineering.

Armenians and Russians should make the best engineers, then. Do they?

Steve Sailer said...

Mikoyan designed some pretty good fighter jets.

Anonymous said...

Education's already plenty feminized as it is & boys' dropout rates (HS & Univ.) testify to that. Look what Title 9 has done to hs & college sports for boys.

The hell with HS/college sports, whether for boys, girls, or steroid mutants. Europe and Japan do well without them. I personally would like to see a cripple or some other unathletic person use Title IX to obtain some fairness in school.

And what does feminization have to do with presence or absence of athletics in school or college? There are a good many female teachers that love to see boys forced to "gladiate" in compulsory phys-ed programs and sports while the girls sit on their privileged asses all day.

Anonymous said...

Mikoyan designed some pretty good fighter jets.

Mikoyan the Armenian did that, but don't forget (ethnic Russian) Gurevich's half of the contribution.

Or what of those Japanese engineers who must have been proficient in Go?

Anonymous said...

"The hell with HS/college sports, whether for boys, girls, or steroid mutants. Europe and Japan do well without them."

I agree, especially college where many of the people who get scholarships have no business being in college.

Also, more and more foreigners are getting scholarships.

It's too bad our sports didn't develop through clubs like in Europe. We would have many more pro teams and wouldn't have to worry about recruiting violations.

Now many high schools make students pay to play a sport. We didn't have to pay in the 80's to play high school sports.

Anonymous said...

Mikoyan the Armenian did that, but don't forget (ethnic Russian) Gurevich's half of the contribution.

Gurevich was a Jew.

Cail Corishev said...

"Who is more oppressed, a fat white male retard in a wheelchair or say, a female african american secretary of state?

With Intersectionality, I now understand why it's the latter and not the former."


Sadly, the girls he's trying to impress with this flagellation still aren't going to sleep with him.

Lady Engineer said...

The Goldieblox ad drove me crazy in that they stuck a little girl in a tool belt and a hard hat like a construction worker. Like Sunbeam pointed out, very few engineers get their hands dirty - the engineers think, the techs build. It'd be more realistic to show a girl with a laptop under her arm. I don't know why everyone (non-engineers mostly) equates building toys = future engineers. More like puzzle solvers = engineers. My sister and I loved our Barbie dolls but we both became engineers, one EE and one ME back in the heyday (who knew?) of 1986 and 1991.

The toy is incredibly limited for all the press it's getting. Any reasonably intelligent child would get about 15 minutes of fun, tops, out of it and move on, never to be touched again. There isn't much you can do with a ribbon and a handful of rods, spools, and connectors. You're better off getting real tinker toys and a bunch of legos for your kids, even if they aren't pastel and come with cute little animals.

Antioco Dascalon said...

If women make up around 60% of all BA and MA programs, but only a fraction of STEM fields, they must really dominate the non-stem fields. Why is there no similar outcry to encourage boys to major in, say, Italian Literature or Psychology?
Where are the toys encouraging boys to explore creative writing or foreign languages? Are these fields less valuable? Or are boys less valued?
Will we not stop until women are the majority in every single major? Is it really plausible that women are 90% of sociology/literature majors AND 51% of STEM majors?

Chubby Ape said...

Antioco Dascalon said...

If women make up around 60% of all BA and MA programs, but only a fraction of STEM fields, they must really dominate the non-stem fields. Why is there no similar outcry to encourage boys to major in, say, Italian Literature or Psychology?
Where are the toys encouraging boys to explore creative writing or foreign languages? Are these fields less valuable? Or are boys less valued?


That's a whole other topic that really merits discussion. What do we lose when when we collectively abandon the arts, culture, social "sciences"* and everything else non-STEM to the ladies? Is it smart for us to hand over book learnin' to the ladies and be happy to be just the white collar equivalent of grease monkeys, keeping the machines going and occasionally coming up with a new iPhone? That's not a hypothetical question either; it's a description of our current arrangement.

*(I'd say let them have sociology and similar bogus fields of study but they end up getting up to real mischief with those degrees.)

Anonymous said...

Heartiste now writes for The Onion?

Anonymous said...

Is the phenomenon of Youtube videos 'going viral' totally on the level? Can the statistics be manipulated? I've wondered this since the video about overthrowing the african warlord went viral a couple of years ago, and it seemed to be playing right into the hands of the US govt. So possibly this toy company video going viral is just the result of Miss Sterling knowing somebody.

Anonymous said...

slightly o/t, but on re-reading Anthony Sampson's 1970s The Arms Bazaar, all about big boys toys, I noticed that the great French aircraft designer and industrialist Marcel Dassault was Jewish - born Bloch. His brother, a Resistance fighter, was nicknamed 'Char d'Assault' i.e. 'Tank', and that's where he took his name from.

Anonymous said...

"Sadly, the girls he's trying to impress with this flagellation still aren't going to sleep with him."

Cail, let us introduce you to a little-known literary device known as "sarcasm".

Anonymous said...

"I'd bet a small cup of coffee that being good at chess (or potentially good at chess) correlates with being good at engineering."

Armenians and Russians should make the best engineers, then. Do they?



Not so fast... The current current world chess champion isn't Armenian or Russian, he's Norwegian. I don't know much about chess, but if I read this right he's ranked highest in history, including with respect to previous chess champions (and if you want to feel old, he's only 22):

"His peak rating is 2872, the highest in history."

Trying to make fine rankings with respect to chess and applying them to engineering might not the that useful. The big distinction is being there at all, being interested at all. Also, engineering, especially large system engineering, at the top overlaps with politics, management, raw leadership... the technical brain has to be there, but it's just one of the necessary conditions for success.

In practice no one denies that Armenians and Russians make great engineers. But engineers don't make fine distinctions with respect to populations along the lines of "Armenians are better engineers than Russians". Engineering effectiveness is also significantly shaped by the engineering culture in a country and its engineering career paths. Do recently graduated engineers become technocrat managers and don't get to do any "real" engineering until late in their career? Or do they start in the trenches and work their way up? Is engineering considered a professional field in which it's bad form to get your hands dirty?

The biggest complaint I hear about modern Russian engineers is they can be reluctant to get their hands dirty and can seem to spend the day taking loooonngg smoke breaks... but maybe this is just a small sample. In areas like open source projects in which they participate as individuals they do very well indeed. Likewise, nobody is surprised when a top engineer is Norwegian or Scandinavian, they have a long history.

sunbeam said...

Anonymous wrote:

"Is the phenomenon of Youtube videos 'going viral' totally on the level? Can the statistics be manipulated? I've wondered this since the video about overthrowing the african warlord went viral a couple of years ago, and it seemed to be playing right into the hands of the US govt. So possibly this toy company video going viral is just the result of Miss Sterling knowing somebody."

I would think most of us, and a lot of other people in various places around the internet think the same thing, regardless of whatever ideology or politics is in vogue at the site.

I mean if you can get Google to play ball I think you could make whatever you wanted viral.

Maybe that explains Farmville. Someone at the NSA said: "If we can make this a hit, then we can do absolutely anything."

Maybe Angry Birds too. I kind of wonder how many apps get popular as a way for someone to show their "Flair."

Dave Pinsen said...

Not only is the world chess champ Norwegian, but so is the new world record holder in the squat. Impressive to see that combination of brains and brawn in any one country but amazing that a country as small as Norway (5mm) could produce both at the same time.

freudwasrightaboutafewthings said...

Rube Goldberg was a man, too.

Maybe they thought he was a she?

Truth said...

"Maybe if they want to get more girls into STEM, they should push that message to parents: it'll keep your daughter from being a Kardashian!"

After all, who wouldn't want their daughter making $62,000 rather than $100,000,000?

Truth said...

" What do we lose when when we collectively abandon the arts, culture, social "sciences"* and everything else non-STEM to the ladies? Is it smart for us to hand over book learnin' to the ladies..."

Men didn't abandon these fields, men who give a shit about education did.

Chubby Ape said...

I doubt the pop feminist claim that it's the patriarchy that wants girls to aspire to be fairy princesses and play with pink plastic knick-knacks. From what I know of the patriarchs in my own family tree I can say with confidence that would not have been the case. Real patriarchal gifts for girls would be a box of chicks the girl was expected to raise up to produce eggs, a flock of geese to herd from one field to another or a book of French vocabulary to memorize. The pink plastic spoilt princess toys are the product of late consumer capitalism, not patriarchy.

Solus said...

Women at Volvo have designed a Concept Car.

http://www.gizmag.com/go/2672/

Women can fail, and yet have an option in Marraige/Housewife.

Man fails; No Sex Period.

Divine Brown University said...

Truth, you really think the Kardashian brood are practical role models for your daughter? Because they're rich (for the moment)? What's your take on Courtney Stodden--small-town gal made good, amirite

Anonymous said...

Real patriarchal gifts for girls would be a box of chicks the girl was expected to raise up to produce eggs, a flock of geese to herd from one field to another or a book of French vocabulary to memorize.

How about kitchen utensils?

Anonymous said...

Impressive to see that combination of brains and brawn in any one country but amazing that a country as small as Norway (5mm) could produce both at the same time.


Chess is often considered a purely intellectual endeavor, but could be there is a physical stamina correlation, along the lines of the ability to pull it out in the old engineering school late night final... Kind of reminds me when I was young and foolish and the engineering team would work 2 or 3 days straight to make the deadline, sleeping on the machine room floor...

"In a 2012 interview, Vladimir Kramnik attributed much of Carlsen's success against other top players to his "excellent physical shape" and his ability to avoid "psychological lapses", which enables him to maintain a high standard of play over long games and at the end of tournaments, when the energy levels of others have dropped."

Anonymous said...

"How's that work out in practice?" - Obamacare.

kurt bermuda said...

"Have you ever noticed that basically everything you are supposed to believe in these days -- feminism, diversity, etc. -- turns out in practice to just be another way for hot babes, rich guys, super salesmen, cunning financiers, telegenic self-promoters, and charismatic politicians to get even more money and power?"

Yes, I have.

Truth said...

"Truth, you really think the Kardashian brood are practical role models for your daughter? Because they're rich (for the moment)? What's your take on Courtney Stodden--small-town gal made good, amirite"

Does going to engineering school guarantee that's one's daughter will not be the slut-de-jour?

In general, I feel that rich is preferable to poor, I'm funny that way, but what needs to be examined is WHY (particularly please) you feel that the Khardashian sisters are bad role models.

JWS said...

What I don't like about the people behind the video is that they are making the Beastie Boys look bad by imputing non-existent political motives into a fun and innocent song. They've actually sued the band:

http://artsbeat.blogs.nytimes.com/2013/11/25/the-beastie-boys-fight-online-video-parody-of-girls/

And what's worse, the mainstream media coverage of the lawsuit is typically Sailerian. I.e. the NYT's headline states "Beastie Boys Fight Online Video Parody of Girls" when it was the Beastie Boys who were initially hauled into court.

They are victims of unfair treatment, yet the NYT's politics prevent their editors from accurately representing them as such.

Anonymous said...

If Paris Hilton was to say "STEM - that's hot" you would have more women applying for places than places existed.

The Volvo concept car. A space between the front two seats with just enough room to fit a Soong type Android head.

These chicks saw 23rd century needs and delivered it in the 21st.

Unknown said...

"Girls can be great engineers!" - Really? So can we cut off your funding and Affirmative Action quotas, since you can do it yourself?

Wait, what's that? That's sexist? I thought you said girls were better!

There is and always will be a gender gap. IQ is everything. Until I actually see women do what they say will close the gap, they'll be nothing more than harpies singing bad tunes.

Paul Ciotti said...

It's hard to get girls to study engineering. They tried it about 20 years ago at one of the seven sisters (Radcliffe?). They eventually had to shut the department. It wasn't that the women couldn't handle the courses. It was rather that they regarded engineering as a step down the social ladder.