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October 20, 2013
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Publisher's Notebook: What would happen if more women were running Congress?

At the risk of sounding — I don’t know, feminine — I don’t think there is any question that if women were running Congress today we wouldn’t be sitting on the brink of insolvency.

I know. How can women run our nation when they can’t shoot, drink or fornicate?

Good questions, but if you’ll let me explain, I’ll try to put this in terms most guys will understand.

According to most scientific research, women get things done. Guys think about getting things done, but then we get distracted by shiny objects and forget what we were supposed to get done. That’s why we don’t shop for groceries until the refrigerator is filled with stuff we no longer recognize.

It’s also why we never have toilet paper or deodorant.

For a more recent example of how women get things done, we need look no further than the National Football League, where once-tough players were wearing pink socks on Sunday in recognition of Breast Cancer Awareness Month.

Can you imagine Dick Butkus or Mike Ditka wearing pink back in the day?

“Here’s what we need you to do,” a group of women must have instructed the NFL commissioner. “We need all your players to wear pink socks during Sunday’s games.”

“Wow, I don’t know about that,” the commissioner might have said. “Not sure the players will go for that.”

“If they have any questions they should ask their wives or girlfriends,” the women responded, turning to leave.

Scientists who study women also determined that women lead differently than men. They are more inclusive and collaborative and actually care about other people in the room.

Men might ask how you are feeling, but we really don’t want an answer. It’s kind of like making a comment about the weather. If you start to get into the details about how you are feeling, we will generally zone out, reminding ourselves to never ask that question again.

I had someone spend 10 minutes telling me about his hemorrhoids last time I asked. I tried to act as if I really cared, but finally had to tell him I was late for my colonoscopy.

For some reason, women really want to know and will listen attentively for as long as you want to ramble on about your miserable life.

And then they want to help, for crying out loud.

You could make a good argument that women legislators would be more responsive to their constituents, which would be really cool.

Using this “shutdown” as an example, women would probably be more inclined to do what most voters want — avoid another Great Depression. Women hate Great Depressions more than men because they would prefer a bathroom to the woods, or bushes. They like homes with roofs and fireplaces and shelves for all the stuff we pay movers a lot of money to move every five years.

While a camper in a Walmart parking lot might sound like a perfect alternative to a man, women would prefer an actual house.

And, believe it or not, women are more apt to compromise. Scientists have concluded that men are far more stubborn than women. Not me, of course, but most men.

Women are also more fiscally responsible than men, a fact I can’t dispute. My wife pays the bills and gives me an allowance. The last time I saw my own paycheck, I had hair and abdominal muscles.

Sometimes I’ll hide money under the mattress because my wife thinks $5 should last a week.

If you want to see clear evidence of the difference in fiscal responsibility, go to the supermarket and study shoppers.

Women take at least 20 minutes to go down one aisle, looking at every can and box on the shelf until they find the best value.

I can get through an aisle in 15 seconds or less.

“Where’s the bread?”

“Aisle 2.”

I find the correct aisle, grab a loaf of bread and head for the checkout stand. Unless distracted by a shiny object (like a flat-screen TV, or large bag of tortilla chips), I’m out of there in maybe two minutes.

“Do you have your rewards card?” they always ask.

“No,” I always answer. “I’m just passing through.”

I suppose women simply prefer to feel more secure than men, something that requires a good amount of financial planning.

Guys tend to spend money until they eventually reach into their pockets and come up empty. Then they turn to the guy next to them and ask, “Can you spot me a 20 until payday?”

That’s how our government got into the trouble it’s in today. By the time payday rolls around, we owe more than our paycheck can cover.

In other words, if Harry Reid and John Boehner were women, they’d have gotten together over a potluck dinner or pizza party by now and hashed out a compromise.

And that doesn’t mean there is no need for the rest of us. Men will always have a place in government, so long as women aren’t willing to shoot, drink or fornicate.

Jeff Ackerman is publisher of The News-Review. He can be reached at 541-957-4263 or

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The News-Review Updated Oct 20, 2013 12:04AM Published Oct 20, 2013 12:04AM Copyright 2013 The News-Review. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.