Antigone: No matter—Death longs for the same rites for all.
        Creon: Never the same for the patriot and the traitor.
        Antigone: Who, Creon, who on earth can say the ones below don’t find this pure and uncorrupt?
        Creon: Never. Once an enemy, never a friend, not even after death.
        Antigone:  I was born to join in love, not hate—that is my nature.
        Creon: Go down below and love, if love you must—love the dead! While I’m alive, no woman is going to lord it over me.

Brad DeLong, in his newsletter, cited what in my opinion is one of the clearest and most understandable analysis of the financial crisis initiated by Citibank's London hedge fund trader and of the nature of hedge funds in general. It also highlights why, conspiracy mavens aside, the Federal Reserve system was a pretty good idea. http://delong.typepad.com/sdj/2013/05/the-washington-super-whale-hedge-fundies-the-federal-reserve-and-bernanke-hatred.html#more

        But perhaps the most interesting thing to me, not discussed at all in the post, concerned the supervisor of the rogue trader. Upon realizing that the trader's approach could either leave Citibank perhaps the most overwhelmingly wealthy entity on earth or bankrupt, the supervisor chose to take the current loss in order assure preservation of the bank rather than risk it on the potential of becoming richer than Croesus. That supervisor was a woman.

        Would the exclusively male traders and managers at Lehman Brothers have made the same choice? Obviously they did not when presented with similar situation.

        Alas, the rogue trader's manager that put preservation of the organization above untold wealth was fired. Little has changed in 3000 years. We men still behave like Creon.

It is not just in finance that women appear to be better equipped than men to deal with many  of the issues raised by the power modern technology has endowed upon our species. I have written here before (Here, here and here) that perhaps our survival as a species depends upon women assuming a primarily if not the primary role of governance and management of our major institutions that men have expropriated for their own benefit over the past 10 millenia.

 Other recent studies seen to corroborate this sense that a significant women's role in management of our dominant institutions is not just a question of equity and civil rights but a necessity for societal survival. For example studies have shown that when looking at pictures of immoral acts, women’s judgments of severity correlate with higher levels of activation in emotion centers of the brain, suggesting concern for victims, whereas men show higher activation in areas that might involve deployment of principles (Carla Harenski and collaborators).

            What this seems to me to mean, if one can generalize it to a gender based approach to public policy, is:

            “For men, first punish the guilty and for women, first protect the innocent.”

             When men watch wrongdoers getting punished, there is activation in reward centers of their brains, whereas women’s brains show activation in pain centers, suggesting that they feel empathy for suffering even when it is deserved (Tania Singer and collaborators).

            (Read more: http://feedproxy.google.com/...)

            Does this mean that women are genetically predisposed to liberalism? Probably only a conservative would consider that to be so and would have no doubt that that would be an additional reason why God considers them the lesser sex. However, in fact such biologic predispositions tend to be expressed through sociological filters that allow us only to make certain generalizations and not predict specific actions or results.

            Nevertheless, numerous studies have found that women are more likely than men to reciprocate acts of kindness (reviewed by Rachel Croson and Uri Gneezy).

            In an analysis of the range of findings of the emotional differences between men and women in situations that could affect social decision making, the authors opine that on the whole, women seem to be more empathetic and more focused on the collective good. This is broadly consistent with the suggestion by at least one of the researchers that women are more likely than men to base moral decision on a care orientation, whereas men gravitate more towards principles.

These studies prompted to write some time ago:

            "For at least 10,000 years or so virtually every political system, economic system and religion on earth has been designed by men for men. There is no natural or divine law that requires any of these structures to be designed in the way that they have been. During those same 10,000 years every justification of those structures have been developed by men to benefit men."

Note: I read recently read (and apologize I could not find the citations so I do not know if it is true or implemented as I describe) that Google had instituted a two woman policy. No major decision affecting corporate policy was allowed to be bad unless at least two women participated directly in the decision making. According to my recollection Google management believes that they have empirical evidence that the process has significantly improved the company's decision making.

Today's Quotes:

"Boys grow up oblivious to the fairer sex. Their daily concerns involve Tonka trucks and Kung-Fu movies. But boys grow older. One day, a girl makes a subtle motion, a swish of hair, a bat of an eye, and suddenly the lad takes notice. That’s when all the problems start. It starts slow. He doesn’t work it out right away. He finds the Spanish teacher’s lectures more interesting. He double takes passing a billboard. Then one morning, he wakes up sticky. He learns to do it manually. He accumulates a collection of porn— a compendium the likes of which hasn’t been seen since the library of Alexandria burnt to the ground. He becomes an expert on female anatomy. He learns breasts. He learns butts. He can mentally image the entire high school cheerleading squad in a dramatic re-enactment of One Thousand and One Arabian Nights. He prepares for all conceivable eventualities— and he’s entirely unprepared for the real thing."
            B. Justin Shier. Zero Sight (Zero Sight Series, Book 1) ( Astraeus Press).
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