Civil Service

27 October 2005

For a short time in my early 20s, I worked in the Civil Service.

In Britain – and from what I’ve heard, other Western nations too – government departments are female dominated. This is for a couple of reasons.

For starters, Government departments don’t have any competition. If they fuck up, a token official resigns on a fat pension and everything continues as before once the scandal has died down. Also, if government departments are inefficient, the government can just tax some more of it’s suckers citizens and jail those that are unable to pay up, and hey presto, some more money is thrown at the problem. Therefore, it’s the ideal employer for women who want to work part-time (and be paid full-time wages), clear off early to make the school-run and take time off whenever the kids are sick. Plus Civil Servant managers and the feminist politicians in charge can have wonderful fun throwing that seemingly limitless supply public money on bonfires in the form of exciting experiments in “equality.”

The second point is best summed up by Richard Ford from a recent post on his excellent blog The Underground Railroad:

“Women do well in public service because all that is required of them is that they fit in and take the required qualifications. Original thought is a disadvantage in any form of government job and will mark you out as a troublemaker- so naturally women rise to the top.”

This was evident when I worked in the Civil Service. In our office there were twenty-seven people.

I was one of four men.

That’s just a fraction over 85% female.

This was pretty much standard for the Civil Service, as I came to learn. Were women happy? Of course not. They still found much to gnash their teeth about.

We once received a newsletter containing an article about “Equality” in the Civil Service. It had some statistics and a graph in pretty colours that showed the “gender division” in the Civil Service.

The Civil Service was split into five groups, A to E. Group A was those Civil Servants in the top positions, earning vast quantities of cash to sit around thinking up new and exciting things to put in the latest newsletter. Group E was those like myself at the time, mere mortals who sat around reading the latest newsletter to kill a few minutes before hometime.

Groups B to E – sub-management through to gophers – were between 60% and 80% female. Group A, the bigwigs, was about 35% female.

The comments in this article raged and fumed about this sexist and unequal state of affairs, with quotes from various Equal Opportunity Executives ranting about how Something Must Be Done.

Naturally, they didn’t care about the under-representation of men in the first four groups. No, no, not at all. All they were fuming about was the fact that ‘only’ 35% of top management in the Civil Service were female. They didn’t actually contemplate the idea that 35% is quite a lot, really. Over a third. They didn’t consider that wome often drop out of the work-force once they’re married and having kids. They certainly didn’t give a damn that the number of Civil Servants of Group A consisted of only about a thousand people, whilst the other four (female dominated) Groups consisted of tens of thousands of people, meaning vastly more individual women were in the Civil Service than individual men. Oh no, those things didn’t cross their tax-payer funded arses. There was just lots of ravings about equality and…whatever.

I left within a week of reading through the newsletter. The pay was shit anyway.

Unfortunately, on my penultimate day in the Civil Service, I had to put up with an Equal Opportunities Seminar. It was run by two nutters from some Head Office somewhere, two experts in Equal Opportunities. Yes, they were both female. One was grotesquely obese as well. So was the other.

They twittered and frothed at the mouth whilst I semi-dozed at the back of the room, but I had to snigger when I heard one of these blubbery witches declared how “women are still heavily discriminated against in the workplace, including government offices like this one.”

Just to remind you; there were 27 members of staff in this office. 23 female (who held all three senior posts) and 4 male.

Yeah, how awfully discriminated against.

posted by Duncan Idaho @ 8:05 PM


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