Point: Pay discrimination act excuse for government intrusion

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    Surrounded by press, smiling faces and women’s unions, President Barack Obama signed the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, which gives female employees more time to take their pay discrimination cases to court.

    The bill was named for Lilly Ledbetter, who lost a pay discrimination case in the Supreme Court because she had not filed the case within the 180 days previously allowed by law.

    This sounds like a heartwarming story about the great things politicians can do, but in reality the law does not make economic sense and is another excuse for government expansion into private lives.

    Economist June O’Neill found that when men and women enter the same field a pay gap does not exist. She also found no pay gap between men and women who have never had a child or been married.

    Harvard University economist Claudia Goldin said there is not sufficient evidence to support the idea that discrimination plays a major role in the wage gap. Instead she points to other factors, such as different choices made by women, as reasons for the gap.

    Goldin’s ideas are supported by a study from the Center for Policy Alternatives and Lifetime Television, which found that women prefer jobs with more flexibility and benefits to jobs with higher wages.

    These studies contend that discrimination is not the reason for pay discrepancy. Therefore, legislation aimed at closing this gap is futile and nothing more than a way for the government to expand its powers.

    Politicians have a facade of making things fair for people, but all this law does is infringe on corporations and create a bigger and more intrusive government.