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What Do Women Want?

12:02 PM, Apr 13, 2012 • By GEOFFREY NORMAN
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Evidently, neither of the all or nothing alternatives so furiously argued yesterday in a major battle between the stay-at-homes vs. the working moms. According to the most recent polling data I could find, most women would, unsurprisingly, prefer something of a compromise:

Among working mothers with minor children (ages 17 and under), just one-in-five (21%) say full-time work is the ideal situation for them, down from the 32% who said this back in 1997, according to a new Pew Research Center survey. Fully six-in-ten (up from 48% in 1997) of today’s working mothers say part-time work would be their ideal, and another one-in-five (19%) say she would prefer not working at all outside the home.

This preference is far too rational and prudential to excite political shock troops and send them into action, which probably explains why it didn't get much play yesterday on the battle scarred fields of Twitterstan. A compromise solution, not ideal, but better than either of the alternatives? How boring.

Yesterday's debate was, of course, mostly notional.  The unemployment/underemployment rate makes finding a job of any kind difficult for just about everyone. A willingness to be a working mom doesn't guarantee that you'll find work. But should the economy come back, employers might take note of this preference and hire accordingly. They could get good help by making some adjustments.  

Okay. That's it for this halftime, public service message.  

Now, back to the War on Women!

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