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Tuesday, March 01, 2005

Keep 'em Barefoot And Pregnant

Memo To The Mythical Female Bloggers: women are chattel.  Hey, I don't make up the rules, I just follow them.

Via Bark Bark Woof Woof, I see that David Brooks has once again pierced the shroud of secrecy surrounding liberalism's evil plan to destroy America.  To steal directly from Mustang Bobby's shorter treatment: First gay marriage! Now separate checking accounts threaten traditional family values! Oh, the humanity!

See, Brooksie realizes, because he reads really deep, old Russian novellas by Tolstoy, that having separate checking accounts allows women too much freedom from their husbands' prying eyes.  After all, you and I both know that given free rein with money, women just spend and spend and spend.  If the Wise and Benevolent Husband isn't there to apply a little Fiscal Discipline, why, The Good Wife might spend us out of Hearth and Home!

I guess I'll just have to put my foot down and tell Stef to close all of her individual accounts.  Oh, wait, that won't work: I don't have a checkbook anymore so I have her write all my checks for me.  Okay, this might require a re-think.

Still, I look forward to Bobo's next column in which he tells us that having women work outside of the home has caused married couples to drift apart, which threatens not only families, but our entire nation.  After that, if I might be so bold as to make a suggestion to my intellectual and moral superior,  maybe he should write about repealing women's suffrage, which is clearly ripping apart the very fabric of our society.

We are at war, and during wartime we all must make sacrifices.  And this is no ordinary war: it is fundamentally a war between civilizations.  We must protect our way of life at all costs, and I'm afraid that simply means women should go back to their traditional roles in the home while the men do manly things outside the home, like buying 60" plasma TVs with checks written from accounts whose monthly statements our wives never have to see.

Now that's progress.

ntodd

[Update: minor edits]

March 1, 2005 | Permalink

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» What Will He Suggest Next? Take Away Women's Right To Vote? from Trish Wilson's Blog
NTodd from Doyihi Mir alerted me to this bone-headed article by David Brooks, who thinks that married couples with separate banking accounts are teetering on the edge of disaster. Mustang Bobby from Bark, Bark, Woof, Woof also wrote about the [Read More]

Tracked on Mar 1, 2005 12:57:05 PM

Comments

I'm NOT giving up my nylon stockings for this war, I'm NOT, I tell you!

Posted by: watertiger | Mar 1, 2005 8:11:10 AM

"gannoning my Brooks post"?

I do believe you've coined a phrase, free thinker!

Posted by: NYMary | Mar 1, 2005 8:47:24 AM

Thanks for the link.

OT, NTodd - go back to my post re St. David's Day; I left you a note.

Posted by: Mustang Bobby | Mar 1, 2005 9:26:31 AM

watertiger - THIS IS WAR!

NYMary - I'd better get that trademarked, then.

MB - Aye.

Posted by: NTodd | Mar 1, 2005 10:05:47 AM

trying to think of a household i know in which the woman doesn't handle the money, wouldn't be this one.

these bastards obviously want to drag us back to father know's best fantasy land, it was a fantasy land then, and an impossibility now.

somebody wake me up when this rightwing nightmare is over.

Posted by: charley | Mar 1, 2005 11:38:53 AM

i tried to read the article, i really did. but all i could keep thinking, one paragraph in is, Bobo is a frog. a very stupid, silly, (but dangerous) frog.

he'd probably like that, being considered dangerous. the whole lot of them are venomous reptiles.

i'll just have to get my bobo from you and attaturk. you are both much better writers, and funny too.

Posted by: charley | Mar 1, 2005 11:49:45 AM

Jumpin' jiminers! They're expecing me to watch the purse strings? I haven't balanced my check book in six months!

~~a procrastinating, lazy husband

Posted by: Darryl Pearce | Mar 1, 2005 12:05:14 PM

I did the joint checking account thing. It made managing the money easier for things like bills, but ...

"Hey, who bought $25 worth of cigarettes and sunflower seeds at Circle K a week ago Friday?"

"Oh...the receipt's in my other pants."

"You mean the ones that are in the washing machine right now?"

"Yep."

And when you separate...it takes years to get it untangled. Trust me.

Posted by: Mustang Bobby | Mar 1, 2005 12:23:49 PM

I think the thing that peeved me most about the article was his casual assumption that women have nothing better to do than get married and raise families. It's as if there's something wrong with me if I don't suddenly decide that having babies is a better way to spend my money (the key word here is MY money, not "my husband's money") than spending it on things that make me happy, fulfilled, and improve my quality of life. God forbid.

Posted by: V. | Mar 1, 2005 12:41:28 PM

I think this is a fine example of how out of touch pundits on both sides of the fence have become.

There's a sizeable number of families that don't have one checking account, much less two. And there are plenty more where making the nut from week to week is an all-consuming challenge.

The need for privacy in discretionary spending is a luxury as unattainable as "a little vacation cottage on the cape" for many of us.

Posted by: Quaker in a Basement | Mar 1, 2005 1:17:17 PM

There are some families where the choices are a)joint finances and resulting bankruptcy, b) separate finances and eternal marrie bliss. Too bad David knows nothing about marriage.

Posted by: Echidne of the snakes | Mar 1, 2005 2:15:47 PM

I'm all for it. I'm going to email David Brooks right now and tell him to cancel any separate bank accounts he has and make sure all the bank accounts he and his wife have are in his wife's name. After all, we have to preserve marriage.

Posted by: Trish Wilson | Mar 1, 2005 2:21:22 PM

How these manly macho men long for the 1950s when men were men and women knew their place...along with those minorities and foreigners and other suspicious weird people who clearly knew who to kowtow to and how often. Those were the happy days....

Posted by: ellroon | Mar 1, 2005 2:24:01 PM

Right on, Quaker.

My wife and I have three accounts - one for each of us, one jointly held - which I guess puts us on the outer fringes of what's bad about America in Brooks's view.

His column is a perfect example of the cognitive dissonance that happens when the philosophy of the "free" marketplace that these guys have been extolling as temporal utopia collides with community-based values. They, of course, see family as the only communality and are outraged when the system they support so avidly in every other arena suddenly rears its head on the homefront. A marriage isn't like a real estate investment, Brooks says. Well, I agree, although I can't see what this has to do with separate accounts.

Meanwhile, Brooks and his ilk are trying to break down community, from my neighborhood to the American community, by doing all they can to give us separate accounts - vouchers for schools, personal accounts for retirement, health savings accounts - rather than admitting that some things should be paid for from the general (community) fund.

Posted by: Meteor Blades | Mar 1, 2005 3:24:14 PM

Skip and I have a joint account. But, in the Japanese tradition, I control it.

Posted by: Roxanne | Mar 1, 2005 3:30:17 PM

OK, I see why MB got that Koufax. That last graf is pure lightning.

Posted by: Quaker in a Basement | Mar 1, 2005 3:37:07 PM

Yeah, meteor Blades, that was a great comment. I wandered over here from steve gilliard's blog to add what I had failed to point out over there, that the key phrase in brooks's essay is where he describes public life as an unending series of violent, individiualistic attempts at self aggrandizement. When I was growing up the public sphere was opposed to the private not as savage:civilized and not as individual:collective but, in fact, the other way around. The public world was the one where people put on their best faces and best sides, where we worked for, you know, the public good. The private was where people worked and fought for individual interest. The right's rape of the language, as well as the social, is nearly complete when public is equated with empty individualism and the private realm is reduced to a manipulated, politicized, battle ground for right wing theories of gendered hierarchy.

aimai

Posted by: aimai | Mar 1, 2005 4:06:33 PM

I'll let you have my refrigerator magnets and all of my incense burners. But go near my wallet and you be singing soprano, dude.

Posted by: vachon | Mar 1, 2005 8:19:25 PM

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