December 30, 2019

"When I first came to Washington, I was surprised at how few Democrats had taken their argument for the merit of paid leave to their colleagues across the aisle."

"So it really was starting from the beginning and talking about this policy and framing it in different terms.... We proposed the first ever bipartisan, bicameral plan.... [T]he president has made very clear he thinks that this is critical policy. And now we are working with members on both sides of the aisle to see who has the right policy to move forward and to be able to garner the votes to pass this into law....  I think the option that has been put out there by the Democrats without even opining on the policy of it, it has sat there since 2012, has never been scored, has never received the endorsement of a president, including President Obama, and has never received bipartisan support from colleagues in the Senate. So the way I look at it is that the debate had grown stale...."

Said Ivanka Trump on "Face the Nation."



The interviewer, Margaret Brennan, tries to bring a little edge.

First, she brings up the fact that Ivanka, in her own private business, did not initially have a paid family leave policy in place. Ivanka's answer is that the first pregnant person in her company was the fourth person hired, indeed, she was pregnant at the time of hiring, and they put a policy in place at the point.

Second, Brennan introduces the topic of family separation and immigration, which she is kindly enough to observe that Ivanka was "vocal" in opposing and called "a low point." Brennan asks if Ivanka is still "engaged" on the subject of family separation. Ivanka answers and quickly turns the subject to human trafficking:
Well, immigration is not part of my portfolio, obviously. I think everyone should be engaged. And the full force of the U.S. government is committed to this effort to border security, to protecting the most vulnerable. That includes those being trafficked across our border, which this president has committed to countering and combating human trafficking in an incredibly comprehensive, aggressive way. So the full United States government has been focused on this issue, starting with the president.
There's no additional challenge. That's the end of the interview.

The line "immigration is not part of my portfolio" was seized on by Trump critics: "Twitter Critics Go Bonkers When Ivanka Trump Says Family Separations Aren’t In ‘My Portfolio’/Ivanka’s portfolio only covers photobombing and lots of vacations,” said one wag" (HuffPo), "President Donald Trump's daughter and senior adviser Ivanka Trump skirted questions on her father's immigration record in an interview this month, saying his notorious 'family separation' policy was not part of her 'portfolio'" (Newsweek); "'Immigration is not part of my portfolio,' replied Trump. Oh well, so much for some compassion" (WaPo).

And, yes, I see that she said "garner." She has a slow, deliberate, anesthetized manner of speech, so I'm not surprised to see "garner" living there. She doesn't talk like her father. Her speech is much more like what we used to hear from Jeb Bush back when we listened to Jeb Bush. By the way, my focus on the word "garner" began with a "Face the Nation" interview (in December 2015):
Those who want a more moderate Republican candidate should be pressuring Bush to withdraw and back Rubio.... I've watched [Bush] on a couple of shows recently and am just dismayed at the weak impression he gives. Is he oblivious? He simpers and nods to the point where Meade and I just laugh at him. It's an in-joke for us that he keeps saying the word "garner." Three times in one short "Face the Nation" interview last Sunday. On ISIS:
[B]ut we need to lead in this regard to garner the support of the Persian Gulf countries, other Arab nations and Europe....  [W]e need to garner the support of the support of the Arab world.... 
And on Trump:
He's -- he knows what he is saying. He's smart. He's playing you guys like a fiddle, the press, by saying outrageous things, and garnering attention. 
If Trump heard that, I'm sure he laughed. I'd like to see his Jeb imitation.

Look at how awful Jeb was on Bret Baier's show last night (sitting with the pundits, including George Will). Don't miss when he says "garner." 
AND: The only reason to say "garner" is if you think there's something wrong with a very common word that normal people just go ahead and say all the time without thinking they need to rise above it. The word is: "get."
I wonder what Trump thinks of Ivanka's speech. I imagine he only ever thinks everything about her is wonderful.

ADDED: In the September before the 2016 election, I had a long post about a Cosmopolitan interview with Ivanka that was about Donald Trump's proposal to require paid family leave. Did you remember that Trump campaigned on that issue? From my old post:
[The interviewer said]:
In 2004, Donald Trump said that pregnancy is an inconvenient thing for a business. It's surprising to see this policy from him today. Can you talk a little bit about those comments, and perhaps what has changed?
Ivanka doesn't seem to know what her father said 12 years ago, and she goes meta:
So I think that you have a lot of negativity in these questions, and I think my father has put forth a very comprehensive and really revolutionary plan to deal with a lot of issues. So I don't know how useful it is to spend too much time with you on this if you're going to make a comment like that....
She goes on about how good her father has been as an employer of women, and [the interviewer] nonapologizes — she's sorry Ivanka finds the questions negative — and assures her that Trump really did say that pregnancy is "certainly an inconvenience for a business." He did. Ivanka says she doesn't know that he said that, and she's right to refuse to accept [the interviewer's] presentation of what he said, which might be wrong (though it isn't) and might be out of context.

But Ivanka could have said: Her father was being admirably straightforward. Of course, it's an inconvenience when anything physical takes away from the employee's time and attention at work. But that has nothing to do with the woman's need to deal with recovery from childbirth. She must take some time to recover, and Trump's plan is to ensure that she has some paid leave.

And, if Ivanka had said that, Gupta should have said: But by making it even easier for the woman to take time off — 6 weeks off — aren't you going to intensify the inconvenience that employers see in women? Even your father — who, you say, has been so good with hiring and promoting women in his business — thought of their childbearing function as a problem. Aren't you proposing to spend government money to make that problem even worse, as it becomes more likely that female employees will take even more time away from work?

One more question.... Won't this government spending draw women away from the workplace and the leaning-in style of careerism that feminism has promoted? As they have weeks of time alone with the baby, isn't government easing women into the comfort and happiness of the noncommercial life of the home and perhaps even a spiritual awareness that the best life is grounded in love and family and not a career at all?
Note that the proposal at the time was for maternity leave only. There's a complicated legal problem attached to that limitation, but I won't bug you with that now. Read the old post if you care.

63 comments:

exhelodrvr1 said...

Media ignoring the fact that she is working on an item that has long been part of the Democratic platform. Just like they ignore/downplay the positive impacts this Presidency has had on American blacks, on the economy - in particular those on the lower end of the economic spectrum, health care, etc. Because they are a tool of the Democrats.

rhhardin said...

The general rule is don't hire women.

Annie C. said...

Maybe it's age and time flying by, but I could have sworn on a stack of bibles that you had been highlighting the ridiculous "garner" for much longer.

It just seems like it's always been a part of your columns.

rhhardin said...

Garner and get aren't the same. Garner implies a slightly more than the minimum required effort to get the result; get has no implications. So the performances of the words are different. Garner can be used with irony.

Darrell said...

God Bless all the Trumps. Every one.

Leland said...

My company is implementing paid paternal leave on 1 January. If you care about building stronger families, which I think is Ivanka's point about the merits for the otherside of the aisle to consider, then paid leave for starting families is a good thing. I'm sure the Chambers of Commerce doesn't like it, but then look at who they support.

rhhardin said...

Stick with furze and gorse for exact synonyms.

rhhardin said...

The more rights workers have, the less economic value they have. System question. How will that show up.

rhhardin said...

The cheapest compromise, good for other reasons too, is work at home. Forget the leave.

rhhardin said...

Millet, The Garnerers

Bruce Hayden said...

The emphasis by Dems and the left on family separation of illegals bothers me. Essentially, there are three alternatives wot what we can do when people with kids are caught her as illegal immigrants. First, you can incarcerate the family together. But that means incarcerating the kids along with their parents, and even putting them in cages, as was done by Obama. Or you can incarcerate the parents and release the kids to their relatives. Or you can do what the Dems really want, which is to release adults when caught here illegally, when accompanied by children. That is, of course, why we now have a flourishing rent-a-kid market on the border, incentivizing child trafficking. But, hey, in thanks for the Democrats facilitating this, they expect a lot of these caught-and-released illegals to illegally register and vote for them, so all is good there.

Bruce Hayden said...

“The more rights workers have, the less economic value they have. System question. How will that show up.”

This is basic economics. Which will, of necessity drive down the economic value of hiring women in their childbearing years. Of course, the government will try to police this, but doing so at the point of a gun, as would be the case, is economically counterproductive.

Shouting Thomas said...

First encourage all women to work at jobs outside the home. Tell women that having kids and being a mom is stupid.

Drive up the cost of living thru expansion of the workforce so that two paychecks are needed in every home.

Lobby the government to pay women to stay home with their kids... for a few months.

Another fabricated woman problem.

The real solution is to cease pretending that there is a "woman problem." It's all fake. Always was.

rhhardin said...

I'd guess it turns up as lower pay for everybody. But they won't notice that they're the ones paying for the lady's leave. It seems like the boss is the one paying.

Leland said...

I do agree that flexible work location is the best option, and my company has that as well. That opens a point that is difficult for government to manage. Some businesses cannot afford to have employees disappear for a time, especially when they can easily replace low skilled employees. Does a McDonald's really need to keep a young woman employee on paid leave? Will she be that valuable on her return? Perhaps McDonald's can as a brand can afford the good will, but what about a small retail store? Alas, we do a poor job in America differentiating Capitalism (a Marxist term) and Free Market. Paid leave is best left open to a Free Market to decide what is best. Businesses can compete for highly skilled labor by offering incentives.

Bruce Hayden said...

The flip side is that we really do want our non breeding young women, and esp the portions of tge young adult population least likely to breed, to up their child production. We don’t need high school drop outs to up their child counts, but rather, their better educated sisters. Among other things, our dropping birth rate is accelerating the rapidly approaching failure of the ponsi scheme known here as Social Security. It didn’t help that Obama shifted so many off the unemployment rolls onto Social Security Disability by loosening qualifications, in order to help hide the economic malfeasance of his Administration. Probably be better to put the incentives in the tax code, instead of this way through mandatory leave. But every bit helps.

stevew said...

The use of the word garner, in the contexts you cite, is specific and the meaning different from the word get. To expand on what rhhardin says, this use of garner is intended to indicate that effort is required to get support for whatever it is the speaker seeks. They have to convince or sell or coerce. To get something you simply have to walk over to it and take it. I'm coming around to the idea that garner is a perfectly good and suitable word, in these contexts.

Were all these people that are upset at Ivanka similarly bothered by Michelle Obama's frivolous activities as first lady? No, they were not. Their complaints are just more Orange Man Bad examples. Even when it comes to policies they support. Note that the interviewer attempts to use a 12 year old quote to attack Trump so that he cannot be applauded for his current policy preference.

Shouting Thomas said...

How about just shutting down the "woman problem" industry?

rwnutjob said...

We've had three female marketing managers in a row become pregnant, use their maternity leave then quit to raise the child.

Hagar said...

Paid maternal leave may be a desirable social policy, i.e., good for the nation at large, but why randomly charge business owners for this? It would make more sense to require businesses to let the women go on leave, but the government furnish their paychecks during their time off. How to administrate that open invitation to fraud is of course something else, but thinking of it may help expose the foolishness of this.

A lot of this comes from big government thinking of big business and big labor, but most business is still conducted by small businesses.
Small business is also where future big business and national survival come from, while today's big business, alas, is inevitably destined for the "dustbin of history."

Temujin said...

Anyone who has owned a small business knows what it's like to make payroll. Hell- you hold off hiring more people that you need, just because you are struggling to make payroll each week. And then the business starts to click a bit. Not like a tech company explodes, but like a typical non-tech company grows. Slowly, but steadily. With some hiccups. Revenue goes up. The word starts to get out, and your bottom line is getting a bit 'safer'. Then things happen (because they always do) and your bottom line, your cushion, has shrunk again and so has your income. You are at a point where you need to hire more people to better take care of the business you have and drive it forward. You also need more dollars to ramp up your marketing plan to the next level. But costs- operational costs- do not get less, they get more. Still, you're growing. You're staying up at night worrying about it all, but you're growing. Another Friday, another payroll to make. You're not paying yourself, but you HAVE to pay the employees, insurance, vendors, government (taxes). Everyone gets a taste but you. Then one of your employees comes to you and says, I'm pregnant. What's our plan to pay for me as I take about 4-6 months off?

Now- toss that out into the entire countryside. Those who are for this don't run small businesses. Those who are against it love the idea, but wonder- how do I stay in business? How do I keep ALL of my employees working while I'm covering these other people who are growing their families?

Its not about doing the right thing. What is the right thing? Does CBS News know the right thing? Does Ivanka? I'm not sure I do. But I know what it took to build my company years ago. It would have closed me down before we even got going.

rhhardin said...

The optimal solution would be third world surrogate mothers. Fertilized egg goes over, baby comes back, delivered right to the daycare center.

hawkeyedjb said...

Government can't change your pay, but it can change the form of your pay. If government says you're going to get more pay in the form of vacation, paid leave, health insurance, or employment security, then that's what you'll get. But your financial pay will go down, one way or another. In the long run that's the only thing that can happen, because government can't pass a law that makes you more productive.

Hagar said...

For about two decades I suffered from something that would put me out of commission for 2-3 weeks 2-3 times a year. Maybe it was Valley Fever, which at that time was not yet recognized in New Mexico. Anyway, my boss at that time once told me he would take a guess at how much I would be gone in a year and pay me at a lower rate than my professional standing would call for so that he could continue to pay me while I was out sick. If I had not been a known money-maker when functional, I would have been unemployable.

(Of course, I fell I should have been paid on the basis of how much I personally could be expected to bring in for the year rather than the average for the profession, but that is not how bosses think.)

Unknown said...

HEADLINE

Billionaire's daughter find way to increase cost of employment for favored portion of population.

Krumhorn said...

Paid leave is not something gub’ment should require of employers. It should be left to market forces to decide as part of the competition for workers. The cost of growing a family is for the family to bear as part of financial planning. It is not the employer’s burden.

- Krumhorn

Bob Boyd said...

It wasn't clear, is Ivanka's effort at this point to get paid leave for the federal work force? Is that what she's working on? Then the private sector later on?

Ryan said...

Combine #metoo threats with forced paid leave. Plus PMS. Not looking good.

Angle-Dyne, Servant of Ugliness said...

Hagar: A lot of this comes from big government thinking of big business and big labor, but most business is still conducted by small businesses.

Makes you wonder how much stuff like this is being lobbied for by big business. It gives large established enterprises an advantage over the up-and-coming competition that can't afford to fulfill all these gov mandates (or hire lobbyists).

Ryan said...

I have a theory about women workers. If women make less for doing the "same" job, why dont women start a company and only hire women? Their costs would be lower than companies that hire men but they would otherwise be the "same." Brilliant business plan?

Ryan said...

I have one employee, who happens to be female. The nice thing is that she is loyal, not overly smart but smart enough, and, and not overly ambitious.

gerry said...

If you reward behavior, it will increase in frequency of occurrence.

That proved true for welfare mothers.

Just sayin'.

Ann Althouse said...

“ his use of garner is intended to indicate that effort is required to get support for whatever it is the speaker seeks. They have to convince or sell or coerce. To get something you simply have to walk over to it and take it. I'm coming around to the idea that garner is a perfectly good and suitable word, in these contexts.”

Thanks. That explains the song lyric: “You can’t always garner what you want/But if you try sometime, you garner what you need.”

Hagar said...

A good example is the HMOs getting together with the Democrats to write the AHCA with no regard to what they were doing to the rest of the insurance industry, never mind the medical industries, and least of all the citizens not covered by the major cash cows of big business concerns.

BleachBit-and-Hammers said...

Brennan mention Obama's kids in cages and family separations at the border?

nah.

Ann Althouse said...

If you want to stress the effort that went into getting something, there are better verbs than the weak “garner.” Try “win” or “earn” or “score.” Just off the top of my head. I bet you could come up with ten more better choices than “garner.”

Is there even on song lyric using “garner”? It’s a boring person’s word. It’s Jeb’s word.

Ann Althouse said...

Gather, collect, secure, harvest, hoard, stockpile, amass, acquire, reap, store up, stow away...

wild chicken said...

"Get" sounds grasping and crass. "Garner" sounds like you're not trying too hard. Would be unseemly to look like you're trying too hard to get votes, my dear fellow.

And see how that worked out for him.

Jeff Brokaw said...

Did she really “skirt” the questions as the Newsweek headline says? Is that how women dodge uncomfortable topics in a more feminine way?

OK Newsweek.

Fernandinande said...

These songs are about people who use the word "garn":

https://www.lyrics.com/lyrics/garner

I'm addicted to the love that you garner (man cured) ...

If I am cultured, my words will somehow garner respect and ...

I garner respect, I don't let no one ...

Only precious few can garner ...

In a park at 2, plotting, trying to garner loot ...

Wince said...

Ann Althouse said...
If you want to stress the effort that went into getting something, there are better verbs than the weak “garner.” Try “win” or “earn” or “score.”

I think of garner as applying to a more fluid situation. Less like "winning", "earning" or "scoring" a collection of discreet items like trophy heads on a wall. More like achieving a percentage of a larger population, or flock, where there may be some coming and going at any particular point in time, but "garnering" an overall number at every point in time.

Importantly, the items collected have some ongoing volition in whether they stay "collected", either by dint of being convinced to stay or presented with an opportunity to leave.

Enlighten-NewJersey said...

If you google the word garner you find the following definition and a list of similar words. The word get is not included in either. Definition: garner - gather or collect (something, especially information or approval).

Similar:
gather
collect
accumulate
amass
assemble
store
hoard
stockpile
reserve
save
preserve

Howard said...

Garner has popular gravitas because it sounds serious. From Enlighten's list, Garner describes prepper nutbars to a tee

RichAndSceptical said...

Federal government employees already have some of the best benefit packages available. Let them give something up if family leave is so important to them.


Many years ago when I worked for government, the deal was lower salary made up for by good benefits and job security. These days it's great salary, great benefits, and job security.

Government employment should be like being a Senator or Congressman. A certain number of years and you have to reapply and other people can compete for your job.

stevew said...

"You can’t always garner what you want/But if you try sometime, you garner what you need.”

Hahaha, just not that context!

Sebastian said...

Question for Dems and Ivanka: how do you think paid leave will affect other wages and benefits? . . . Wait, you're saying paid leave won't affect other wages and benefits? You mean, you think this will be simply be an add-on?

daskol said...

Bloomberg has weighed in on this, although Trump put it more politely when he pointed out the business inconvenience of pregnancy.

daskol said...

Kill it is something you’re allowed to say in jest when you actually support family leave.

Owen said...

Temujin: great comment on how a small business has to walk a fine line. Volatile, few reserves, finding or making its way. Every Friday another gut-check. And then, scrambling the plan with this big cash/productivity hit. Surprise! And as the national conversation on leave (paid or even unpaid) continues to move the goalposts toward an expectation of a gold-plated entitlement available under more and more circumstances, how can the boss say no? It gets harder and harder to explain the economics and maintain morale.

At the margin, and IMHO in small businesses that margin is often very close, people just say, enough. Not going to expand. Not going to hire. Going to sell up and take the RV to Florida.

This ground-level entrepreneur’s perspective is important but it rarely gets heard in these policy debates. Why? I guess because it puts shade on the piƱata party, where everyone tries to offer even bigger giveaways.

Kevin said...

I wonder what Trump thinks of Ivanka's speech. I imagine he only ever thinks everything about her is wonderful.

I imagine he's pleased to see an actual Trump supporter interviewed, instead of the NeverTrumper punching bags they roll out on a weekly basis.

Amadeus 48 said...

Should this conversation be considered an insult to Erroll Garner, and by implication, Clint Eastwood? And, if you are going there, what about Richard Jewell?

Will no one play Misty for me?

Clark said...

"Garner" is a perfectly cromulent word. English is replete with pairs of words--one deriving from Latin, the other from old German. We have a wealth of words in English. Pick one or the other as you wish. If you want a bare bones language, try Esperanto.

I have upped my usage of "garner" in protest. I also wear shorts proudly.

Narayanan said...

I say : glean for votes (effort and process) and Garner their support (results).

Howmidoing

Narayanan said...

Ivanka knows how to get professora's attention

narciso said...

once you've conceded the point, then you have to default to quality of care, what standard, what certification, what costs are involved, it's only the beginning of the mess,

bagoh20 said...

Don't bitch when jobs go to robotics or overseas. This is how you garner more of that, and jobs preferred by women will be first on the chopping block. Then when men start taking advantage as well, their jobs will go too. Do-gooders do lots of bad to people so they can feel good. Just take drugs. You feel good without screwing the rest of us.

Ryan said...

The word "amid" is way overused in headlines.

Earnest Prole said...

Althouse brutally weaponizes the Stones!

FullMoon said...

Then one of your employees comes to you and says, I'm pregnant. What's our plan to pay for me as I take about 4-6 months off?

New person hired for the job, then former employee wants job back. Now what? Maybe new person doing a better job. Maybe former out of touch with changes.
Or, no replacement, which shows the pregnant woman's position was unnecessary all along.

FullMoon said...

Then when men start taking advantage as well, their jobs will go too.
Not sure of all the specifics. Young California parents each took separate family leave to care for new child. No loss of job.
Financed by payroll deductions.


"About Paid Family Leave
Paid Family Leave (PFL) provides benefits to individuals who need to take time off work to care for a seriously ill child, parent, parent-in-law, grandparent, grandchild, sibling, spouse, or registered domestic partner. Benefits are also available to new parents who need time to bond with a new child entering their life either by birth, adoption, or foster care placement.

PFL does not provide job protection, only monetary benefits; however, your job may be protected through other federal or state laws such as the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) or the California Family Rights Act (CFRA)."

https://www.edd.ca.gov/Disability/Paid_Family_Leave.htm

ken in tx said...

Ivanka is part of the price we pay for not having Hillary as president. So far, it's worth it.

Bunkypotatohead said...

This is how you garner a gig economy.

Bunkypotatohead said...

This is how you garner a gig economy.