We're all in favour of the empowerment of women, however....


It is rather necessary to get things the right way around. This following quotation gets it the wrong way around:

There is a plethora of data which demonstrates that women’s economic participation grows economies, creates jobs and builds inclusive prosperity.

Actually, there is no evidence of that at all. What there is is a great deal of evidence of a correlation between an advancing economy and greater, leading to equal, rights for women. But as we all know, correlation and causation are not the same thing.

We maintain that the causation actually works the other way around. It is an advancing economy that leads to greater rights, leading to that equality, for women.

To take two very basic examples. The aim and pupose of life, assuming Darwin was right, is to have grandchildren. It wasn't that long ago (and is still true in the more benighted parts of the world) that a woman would need to have 6 to 8 children in order to be able to have some reasonable guarantee (absent some dreadful plague that carried them all off) that grandchildren would arrive. In turn this meant spending almost all of fertile adult life either pregnant or suckling: and even after that not a great deal of time for anything else. Once child mortality fell, as blessedly it has done for us and is doing for the more benighted, then the number of children necessary falls and so therefore does fertility. Freeing up that time for that greater equality and so on.

Secondly, consider a poor economy. It is, almost by definition, one reliant upon human and animal power. And women are, we've all noted, rather lacking in that muscle power as compared to men. Thus that traditional division of labour between the sexes. One sex does the heavy lifting out in the money economy, the other does the just as difficult, just as boring, but physically lighter work in the household. Once we move on from muscle power to machine that greater economic equality is actually possible: and it happens.

Telling women in a subsistence agricultural economy about empowerment is therefore a bit of a swiz. What is necessary is to get out of being a subsistence agricultural economy and the empowerment will naturally follow.

There's no doubt that there's a correlation between this capitalist/free market economic growth and women's empowerment. It's just that it's the growth that causes the empowerment, not the other way around.

All the more reason to support that economic growth of course, for we all most assuredly desire the empowerment.