There is a point in what you say. I also realize that the "I'd rather pick up a good book"-phrase is most likely an exaggeration to make a point, to say that the costs exceed the rewards, at which point a rational person stops expending effort.
I had not considered that rewards could be high but costs also correspondingly very large: I had more or less assumed that a few idiots (small cost) can exceed the entire reward (which would also be small). My working hypothesis was that men simply like, say, coding more than women and therefore are willing to put up with more bullshit.
One possible resolving of the dilemma is that even if men and women experienced quantitatively the same input, it's possible that the women are much more sensitive to slights made by others, to the point of noticing slights where none were intended. (In the threads here, we have seen plain statements from Bruce being reinterpreted in ways that make them *very* offensive to women, and by at least 3 separate women.) But this is just a "grow a thicker skin" argument, and I don't expect it will fly over well.