November 16, 2003
Bailey promoter Derbyshire goes on the defensive!
The HBDG member tries to explain away
his exposure as a lunatic-fringe homophobe and transphobe,
by posing as a "victim" in the "culture wars"
John Derbyshire

As a result of the investigation into J. Michael Bailey's book, Human Biodiversity Group (HBDG) member and staunch Bailey supporter John Derbyshire has been openly exposed as a lunatic-fringe homophobe and transphobe. This is not an empty rhetorical claim: You'll find clear evidence of Derbyshire's extreme views regarding homosexual and transsexual people at the following websites:

As a result of his exposure on those websites, Derbyshire, a prominent National Review magazine columnist, been getting lots of e-mail from his more rational conservative friends asking him "Hey, what the heck is up John?".

In his concern about his colleagues' reactions, "The Derb" went on the attack in a lengthy rant in National Review Magazine's website in efforts to deflect attention away from his exposure as a nationally prominent gay-basher. In his rant, Derbyshire simultaneously attacks trans women as being paraphilic men, and poses himself as being a "victim" in the "culture wars".

The Derb's statement (see below) was posted in "The Corner" in National Review Online, exploiting Derb's powerful media-access as a prominent columnist for the right-wing National Review magazine. His statement is useful in its revelation of the thinking and behavior of the inner HBDG clique who were promoting (and are now defending) J. Michael Bailey and his book on transsexualism. Derb's rant undoubtedly anticipates follow-on statements by other HDBG members, as they discover that they're being tarred by their association with Baileyan science (just as their known ties to Bailey are tarring his science). Therefore, we'll examine Derbyshire's statement in some detail here, to help our investigators watch out for and deconstruct similar rants by other HBDG'ers in the future.

The Derb identifies his perceived nemesis.
The Derb attacks his nemesis.
The strangeness of the Derb's attack is obvious even to other conservatives.
It gets even stranger as the Derb plays "the victim" of a giant conspiracy!
Why does he think we are so powerful, and so misperceive the true source of our power?
The bully gets taken down to size!
Photos of the women whose personal websites exposed Bailey and Derbyshire for what they are.
CULTURE WARS: REPORT FROM DERB BUNKER [John Derbyshire], National Review Online



The Derb identifies his perceived nemesis:

In his statement below, Derbyshire tries to crawl out of the box he's put himself in. While doing so he just can't hold himself back from making yet further defamations of fully-transitioned, socially assimilated transsexual women as being either gay men or sexual paraphilics. You'll note below how he exudes these defamations without remorse, and as if they are simply scientific facts known to everyone, rather than being the recent junk science ideas published by his friend J. Michael Bailey.

Derbyshire especially rails against his perceived nemesis Ms. Lynn Conway. Derbyshire blames most of his exposure problems on Lynn, instead of recognizing that women from all across the community of trans women have collaborated to investigate and expose his teachings and his hate-mongering affiliational connections on the web (doing so via postings on Lynn Conway's website and Andrea James' website).


The Derb attacks his nemesis:

While attacking his nemesis, the Derb makes the most amusing mistakes - the funniest of which is his misapplication of Bailey's weird transsexual classification scheme. Baileyan science (using a test in his book) classifies and personally defames Lynn by calling her an "effeminate gay man", but the Derb instead mistakenly classifies her as an "autoguy"!

Maybe the Derb doesn't know that Lynn is a married woman who transitioned when young, who loves men and has been loved by many men, and who has been with her husband for over 15 years now. Therefore, Lynn is an effeminate gay man according to Prof. Bailey's scientific classification scheme.

However, Derbyshire calls her an "autoguy" in a knee-jerk exploitation of Bailey's classic method of publicly defaming trans women so as to scare them off from complaining about his theories.  Could it be that the Derb isn't particularly smart, and can't manage to correctly add up the results of Bailey's super-scientific "12 question transsexual test" for classifying trans women!  Or could it be that Bailey coached him to take this shot at Lynn, teaching Derb his (Bailey's) primary technique of shredding any trans woman who dared question his science, namely calling them autoguys?

Recall that Bailey coached HBDG member Daniel Seligman who just a month before had called Deirdre McCloskey an autoguy in his Forbes Magazine article.

All this happened after HBDG founder Steve Sailer revealed himself to be (i) a close ally of Bailey's, (ii) well informed on how trans people were deconstructing Bailey's book, and (iii) a strong supporter of Bailey's teachings that most trans women were either actually "homosexual men" or "autoguys" (paraphilic men).

Sailer, HBDG's founder and leader, also wrote a glowing review of Bailey's book. That along with all the other "coincidences" of HBDG support over the preceding months, exposed the HBDG as containing a core group of racists, anti-immigrationists, homophobes and transphobes who had been working closely with Bailey.

Meanwhile, referring to the HBDG group, Derbyshire says "I have never heard of half the people she names." Well geez, that's no surprise, since less than half the HBDG group are identified as being active in the inner clique with Sailer (i.e., that's the half that the Derb knows).  Coincidence after coincidence after coincidence makes a discernible pattern, and it's one that the Derb cannot erase by saying it ain't so.


The strangeness of the Derb's attack is obvious even to other conservatives:

As it turns out, because of Lynn's contributions to computer research she made as a young woman after her transition, she has for decades moved in high circles in the electronics and computer industries, and also in defense industry and military circles - and is well known and respected in those circles. Even many prominent conservative men in those circles know Lynn and respect her (and quite a few of them have healthily lusted after her too!).  Thus Bailey, Derbyshire and Seligman are now being perceived in inner conservative circles as being pretty strange guys for "scientifically reclassifying" women such as Lynn as being left-wing gay men or sexually paraphilic men. Way to go guys!

To get an idea of how ridiculous are the Derb's assertions about the women like Lynn who have been criticizing Mr. Bailey, check out the photos below (and links to the websites) of some of the key women who've been investigating and getting the goods on him.


It gets even stranger as the Derb plays "the victim" of a giant conspiracy!

However, there's another and even stranger aspect to the Derb's recent rant, and that's his sudden leap to playing "the victim".

When Derbyshire was writing glowing reviews of Bailey's book last spring (reviews in which he himself defamed transsexual women), he did so with confidence and moxie.

So what happened to the Derb? What the heck is he so afraid of now?

When this controversy started last April, we trans women were a tiny gender minority group whose backs were against the wall under the assault of Bailey-Blanchard-Lawrence pseudoscience - especially since Bailey's book had been published by the National Academy Press. The trans community was terribly hurt by Bailey's lurid defamations of all trans women in that book, and reacted by mounting a community-wide campaign to expose the errors in Bailey's science and the methods used to produce that "science". Lynn's website is merely one of a number of sites that are involved in coordinating and presenting the results of that campaign.

However, once we exercised our right to free speech and our words began to find their mark, our attackers, including Derbyshire, began acting like frightened, panicked wimps. They and he began accusing us of being powerful, of having vast resources, of having deep political connections, and of conspiratorially deploying these vast resources against poor little them, as "victims"!

For example, check out what Derbyshire is saying about us now:

"They are absolutely unscrupulous, very well funded, and have powerful friends in Congress and the judiciary..."
-John Derbyshire, 11-20-03

My goodness, it's sure news to us that we are such a terrifyingly powerful, well-connected force!

In fact, we are a tiny minority group of survivors of transsexualism who have been quietly living rather normal lives, and who have kept very low profiles because of prevailing societal misunderstandings of gender corrections oft fueled by rogue "scientific" teachings such as those of Bailey. We've been quietly living our lives and succeeding as best we can, in our own exercises of freedom and the pursuit of happiness. For some examples of our lives and identities, see:

The kind of socially-assimilated trans women you'll find in those pages, the women that Bailey and Derbyshire have been attacking, have never been any kind of political force. Nor have we as a group had any kind of organized financial or political clout. We weren't even "activists" before Bailey's book was published, with most of us living our lives out of contact with organized "GLBT" groups.


Why does he think we are so powerful, and so misperceive the true source of our power?

So why is Derbyshire so freaked out about us? Why does he incorrectly visualize us as being so "powerful" and well-connected?

Well, it turns out that we (to our own surprise) are powerful after all, as we've discovered these past months. However, our power comes not from our financial resources or our political connections (or unscrupulous behavior, which Derbyshire self-projects upon us), but from the validity, common sense and persuasiveness of our many written arguments and essays now posted on the internet in sites such as:
It is our words that are winning. It is the power of our reasoned arguments that has led the majority of Bailey's own colleagues to now condemn Bailey's work as "bad science". It is our well-reasoned writings and our submission of direct evidence of misconduct that has led Northwestern University to formally investigate Bailey for violations of research ethics.

Our community's collective writings are also exposing Bailey's supporter Derbyshire as being a rabid homophobe, and identifying his long-standing connections to a clique of racist, anti-immigrationist and homophobic scientists, journalists, pundits and controversy-book authors of HBDG/HBI - as discussed in the following sites.

As our words began finding their mark, we began receiving help and support from other concerned groups.  Upon hearing of the emerging Bailey controversy, the Southern Poverty Law Center(SPLC) became concerned about the scientific and social exploitation of marginalized young immigrant women by a prominent research scientist in a major U.S. university.

The young Hispanic trans women in Chicago who were scientifically and socially exploited by J. Michael Bailey were a very disenfranchised, disadvantaged minority group. Perhaps that is why Prof. Bailey thought he could get away with doing anything he wanted with those women, including not informing him that they he was using them as research subjects, nor that he was planning to expose any and all personal details of their most intimate lives - details which they had to selectively reveal to him during his questioning in order to get his signature on their letters of approval for sex-reassignment surgery. Bailey probably felt no concern about exposure of his unethical research and personal practices by these young immigrant trans women, since they were desperate to complete their transsexual transitions and then blend back into society.

Reacting to SPLC involvement, Derbyshire now rants that:

"This campaign is very well financed and has pulled in some big guns--the Southern Poverty Law Center, for example..."

Well now, it's hardly a "vast transsexual conspiracy" for SPLC to become involved. The folks at SPLC were greatly concerned about what the heck Bailey was doing with those young Hispanic women who came to him for help. Pioneers of justice and equality, the Southern Poverty Law Center was founded in 1971 as a small civil rights law firm. Today, the Center is internationally known for its tolerance education programs, its legal victories against white supremacists and its tracking of hate groups. They are now tracking Bailey and his associates, and for good reason.

We also received open support from the top scientific leaders in the area of sex research. Kinsey Institute President Dr. John Bancroft has proclaimed that Bailey's work is "not science". Dr. Eli Coleman, then President of HBIGDA, has pronounced Bailey's work to be "bad science". (HBIGDA is the international group of researchers and clinicians who study and treat transsexual people. Prof. Bailey is not even a member of that organization). We then received an unprecedented letter (also sent to Northwestern University) from the Officers and Board of Directors of HBIGDA openly condemning Bailey's book:
"trust and mutual respect between the scientific and the transgender communities is essential . . . to promote the health and well-being of transgender and transsexual individuals and their families. It is felt by many of our members that this poorly referenced book does not reflect the social and scientific literature that exists on transsexual people and could damage that essential trust."

- HBIGDA Officers and Board of Directors.
Furthermore, a number of Republican congressmen are calling for further investigations into Bailey's funding by NIH, saying that his research is a total waste of hard-earned tax dollars that could have been spent of serious scientific research instead of junk science. Let me tell you folks: When you've got SPLC on one side and republican congressmen on the other side all going after someone - you KNOW that something really bad has gone down, and that that someone is in for real trouble.
A bully gets taken down to size:

Derbyshire can call us names. He can try to defame us using Bailey's absurd terminology and classification scheme. However, sensible people see through those ploys, and see Derbyshire for what he is: An intellectual bully and hate-monger who - like Bailey - got beaten by the common sense and persuasiveness of the writings of a group of women. In the process he is now stands exposed as the type of rabid homophobe and transphobe that's an embarrassment even to most conservatives.

Like a school-yard bully who's been ignominiously pulled down and thrashed by a small circle of girls, Derbyshire is now shouting bad names at us trans women, while whining like a sniveling coward and complaining to his friends off-site that he was beaten up by overwhelming forces!

"They're too powerful for me!" is a pretty lame excuse for losing. After all, Derbyshire and his transphobic friends had the real power.

Those men had the whole right wing media at their open disposal, and they have used media such as the National Review and Forbes Magazine in a series of writings against us in their promotion and defense of J. Michael Bailey. However, their words, though published in national media, were losing ones, and have only served to expose them as the mean-spirited bullies they truly are.

So there it is: Derbyshire running for cover, blaming a huge "conspiracy" for the failure of his and Bailey's arguments, and pleading for help from his more normal conservative friends to save him from the impact of the writings of a small group of women on their personal websites.

Listen to Derbyshire's pathetic pleas for help, now that he's been caught in the spotlight of negative public opinion:

"This is real culture war here, and if we lose it, we shall lose our freedoms".
-John Derbyshire, 11-20-03

Derbyshire thereby claims that our tiny group of trans women, women who are merely posting personal writings on the internet to defend themselves against the junk science of Mr. Bailey, now threaten everyone else's freedoms!

Gadszooks Derb, that's total nonsense!

We agree that Derbyshire needs help. We suggest that his more normal conservative friends quietly encourage him to seek professional counseling to figure out why the very existence of gay men and transsexual women makes him so crazy...

Lynn Conway
With the help of her friends!


Photos of the women whose personal websites
exposed Bailey and Derbyshire for what they are:

Following are photos of four of the women whose personal websites exposed Bailey and Derbyshire for what they are. These are the kind of trans women that the Derb, Bailey, Seligman and Sailer are now calling autoguys, in desperate and ridiculous efforts to defame and discredit their writings. At the same time, these are also the women that the Derb claims are leading the powerful, well-funded, politically-connected, vast left-wing culture-war conspiracy that is overwhelming him!

Way to go Derb! Not only have you been exposed by your own writings as a weirdly prissy homophobe, but you're now exposed as being pussy-whipped into a whining coward by the personal websites of a small handful of sexy, fun-loving women!


Andrea James, Lynn Conway and Calpernia Addams
Anjelica Kieltyka

BTW Derb - we hope you aren't counting on conservative politicians coming to your rescue by investigating the vast left-wing conspiracy you claim is "attacking you" and "threatening our freedoms". Guess you haven't noticed it yet, but even conservative Republican congressmen have now joined the bi-partisan movement that is investigating and openly criticizing your incredibly unethical HBDG colleague, the rogue sexologist J. Michael Bailey!


National Review Online
The Corner
Sunday, November 16, 2003

Following the "Derbophobe" link at the end of today's column, a number of readers have e-mailed in to ask what on earth I have done to tick off this Lynn Conway person so very comprehensively.

It's a long story but here is the gist of it.

There is a professor of psychology at Northwestern University, Michael Bailey. Michael's research specialty is the psychology of "gender identity." He studies--in a formal, peer-reviewed academic sense--things like homosexuality, transsexualism, and so on. Earlier this year he published a book about his research, titled The Man Who Would Be Queen. I am slightly acquainted with Michael and his work--we are both members of a certain invitation-only e-list dealing with matters of human variation from biological, psychological and sociological perspectives. I therefore volunteered to review his book for National Review. My review duly appeared in the June 30 issue of NRODT this year. Here it is.

Now, the last part of Michael's book deals with male transsexuals--men who wish to become women. In it, he subscribes to the theory (which did not originate with him) that there are two quite distinct types of male transsexual. The first type is pretty straightforward, just a particularly effeminate kind of homosexual, who wants to be a woman in order to attract male sex partners--heterosexual ones for preference. The second type, however, is much stranger. This is the "autogynephile"--a masculine, basically heterosexual man, whose erotic attention is fixated on the image of himself as a woman. In the studies Michael (and others) have done, this type appears quite distinct from the other. Autogynephiles, for example, are likely to have been married to normal women and to have fathered children by them. They differ from the other type--the "homosexual transsexual"--in all sorts of other ways, too, that show up clearly in life histories and psychological tests.

Now, this is all psychological theory. It may be wrong--though on the evidence Michael presents, in his book and elsewhere, it seems to this non-specialist that he has a pretty good case. This theory, however, is pure poison to those autogynephiles who, like Lynn Conway, have hadsex-reassignment surgery. They take very strong exception to the implication that they are fundamentally males--and heterosexual males at that! WE ARE WOMEN! They scream. FULLY FEMININE WOMEN! To say that they take strong exception to Michael's work is, in fact, to understate the situation. They are spitting furious with Bailey, and have launched a huge campaign against him and anyone associated with him.

The scale of their campaign is tremendous. Anyone who ever shook hands with Michael Bailey is being tracked down and "exposed" via materials like those I linked to. This campaign is very well financed and has pulled in some big guns--the Southern Poverty Law Center, for example, is carrying out a "hate crimes" investigation. Our publisher has been lobbied ferociously to withdraw Michael's book (Michael's publicist, who is also mine, has been a target of their campaign) and Northwestern has also been threatened with various kinds of action if they do not shut Michael's mouth.

What's this got to do with me? Well, I gave Michael's book a friendly review, see, so I must be part of the Axis of Evil. In fact, these lunatics have erected a huge conspiracy theory about myself and Michael, based on the fact that, wait for it, we have the same publisher!!! It follows, you see, that Michael and I meet secretly in a basement somewhere every Friday to plot further insults and outrages against these autogynephiles. I'm not kidding. This stuff is bizarre.

In fact, other than belonging to the same e-list, Michael and I are not acquainted. I have met him just once: his book came out at the same time as mine, and our publisher sent us both to BookExpo in Los Angeles this summer, along with all their other authors whose books had just appeared. Michael does not, in fact, altogether approve of me. He is--as his book clearly shows--sympathetic to people with "gender identity" problems, and regards me as a primitive homophobe. (Imagine! Me!!)

A great many other facts on Lynn Conway's website are wrong, too. I have never, for example, written a book about yachting, and I have never heard of half the people she names as being part of the great Bailey-Derbyshire conspiracy to present autogynephiles as essentially male.

Not to put too fine a point on it, Lynn Conway is nuts. She and her pals have money, though, and energy, and a big cheering section in the "gay rights" crowd, so I shall probably end up in jail for some kind of "hate crime" before they are through with me.

OK, it's all a bit of a storm in a teacup. It does illustrate, though, the savagery of the "gender issues" and "gay rights" campaigners. These people are pure totalitarians, intent on shutting up and destroying anyone who goes against their party line--even someone as generally sympathetic as Bailey. They are absolutely unscrupulous, very well funded, and have powerful friends in Congress and the judiciary--it is they who are driving this new "hate crimes" legislation.

As an opinion journalist, I am fair game, and I can take care of myself. Michael, though, is a scientist, a "retired and uncourtly scholar," quite unused to this kind of vituperation and misrepresentation. His work ought to be validated, or disproved, via the usual processes of discussion and peer review.

Lynn Conway and her gang couldn't care less about any of that. Like the rest of the "gay rights" and "gender issues" crowd, they want to shut down all discussion and debate. Fundamentally they are extreme narcissists, who react with blind unreasoning fury when their precious self-esteem is pricked. They don't want peer review; they don't want science; they don't want discussion; they want blood. This is real culture war here, and if we lose it, we shall lose our freedoms.


This page is part of Lynn Conway's
"Investigative report into the publication of
J. Michael Bailey's book on transsexualism
by the National Academies"