On Science, Fashion & Being PC

Posted By: 'Okie' | 1:59 pm — 8/21/2007 | 6 Comments See comments below:

I’ve been thinking about patterns and parallels quite a bit lately and once again this crossed my mind as I stumbled across an article via Drudge: Criticism of a Gender Theory, and a Scientist Under Siege. It’s about J. Michael Bailey, a psychologist at Northwestern University, who has presented a hypothesis about transgender women so diametrically opposed to the current politically correct viewpoint that he’s found himself caught up in a giant, you-know-what storm.

In the past few years, several prominent academics who are transgender have made a series of accusations against the psychologist, including that he committed ethics violations. A transgender woman he wrote about has accused him of a sexual impropriety, and Dr. Bailey has become a reviled figure for some in the gay and transgender communities.

So, just what has Bailey proposed that has earned him such intense animosity?

In his book, he argued that some people born male who want to cross genders are driven primarily by an erotic fascination with themselves as women. This idea runs counter to the belief, held by many men who decide to live as women, that they are the victims of a biological mistake — in essence, women trapped in men’s bodies.

Now, I’m not writing this out of any pro or con position on theories of transgender folk. As far as I know, I don’t know any and I certainly don’t have any theories about this. What struck me about Bailey’s situation is how similar it is professionally to those scientists that are, or have switched positions to become man-caused climate-change “doubters”. It’s definitely anti-politically correct to NOT believe in global warming, and it’s considered heretical in the PC-world of climate scientists for one to be a scientist and not believe that what warming might actually be occurring is man-caused and endangering the survival of the planet.

Dr. Ben Barres, a neurobiologist at Stanford, said in reference to Dr. Bailey’s thesis in the book, “Bailey seems to make a living by claiming that the things people hold most deeply true are not true.

This same charge gets leveled at AGW doubters, even though the history of science is replete with theories and ideas that were most deeply held as true, but were proven over time to not be true after all. And, more often than not, those that came out with the disparate opinion or theory were shunned, castigated or even physically harmed. Today’s PC sacred-cow truths aren’t gonna go down easy, no matter what is presented to counter them. That’s just the nature of things — it’s always easier to go with the flow, be a part of the consensus, do it because everybody else is doin’ it. Funny, way back in the day, I remember a few stern lectures and car groundings for acting on feelings like that.

In the great Climate Change Debate, when the PC side gets challenged by a new hypothesis or conflicting data and/or analysis, it shows its ugly side. Same with Bailey, who has been accused by his strongest critics of using subjects in research without written consent and with having taken sexual advantage of one of them. An LA based transgender advocate and consultant actually posted images of Bailey’s middle and elementary school children on her (his?) website with sexually-explicit captions. All’s fair when you’re a combatant in the PC wars you know. Another transgender advocate, whose initial proclivity was that Bailey was guilty of everything said or written about him, did her own research and came to very much a different conclusion.

For example, Dr. Dreger found that two of the four women who complained to Northwestern of research violations were not portrayed in the book at all. The two others did know their stories would be used, as they themselves said in their letters to Northwestern.

The accusation of sexual misconduct came five years after the fact, and was not possible to refute or confirm, Dr. Dreger said. It specified a date in 1998 when Dr. Bailey was at his ex-wife’s house, looking after their children, according to dated e-mail messages between the psychologist and his ex-wife, Dr. Dreger found.

Of course, just like with those pro-anthropogenic global warming advocates, one just can’t let a little thing like revised data or new, contradictory information get in the way of your own deeply held inconvenient truths.

The transgender woman who made the complaint said through a friend that she stood by the accusation but did not want to talk about it.

There, “I said it, it’s true — I can’t prove it, screw you!” Wow! Seems like we see this a lot, on both sides too, but a lot more on the PC advocates’ side than vice versa. Hey, they’ve inherently got a lot more to lose.

I’m not stating that just because Bailey is fighting against a PC environment within his own avenue of science and because his detractors have waged a take-no-prisoners approach in fighting against his theories that he’s being proven correct, or incorrect. Maybe he is, maybe not. Just as, even though I do believe that the politically correct anthropogenic climate change position is most likely fallacious, it’s not just because the anti-PC position is attractive to me. However, I am naturally suspicious of Argumentum ad Populum rationales for most anything, especially when they become fashionable, especially to the elite among us.

But, we can debate the pros and cons of climate change until we all drop, and it won’t impact another fundamental reality that appears to be unstoppable — our government just can’t wait to use the PC driven fears of unchecked global warming to dig deep into all our pockets for more redistribution of wealth, even if one isn’t exactly what you would call wealthy. And, if they can’t do it with sweeping Climate Change legislation, then they’ll just be very happy to nickel and dime us, thank you very much!

Reflecting a shift in priorities under the Democratic majority, Congress is moving to spend as much as $6.7 billion next fiscal year to combat global warming, an increase of nearly one-third from the current year.

House appropriations bills call for about $2 billion in new spending on initiatives aimed to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and oil dependency, significantly expanding the budgets for numerous federal research initiatives and launching some new ones.

While legislation to raise vehicle miles-per-gallon standards and cap emissions from power plants has been slower moving — because of resistance from some lawmakers — Democrats have turned to the budget to advance their environmental priorities by increasing spending on a variety of lower-profile programs.
Environmental initiatives are scattered throughout the 12 House appropriations bills for the federal fiscal year that starts Oct. 1. Kei Koizumi, research and development policy program director of the American Assn. for the Advancement of Science, said money for addressing climate change had been added “even in areas where you might not expect to find it.”

Nah, I’d pretty much expect to find little, and not so little earmarks in most any area. Maybe we should check out any federal funding of transgender studies — might just be a bit o’ climate change pork slipped in there as well. Stranger things happen . . .

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This entry was posted on Tuesday, August 21st, 2007 at 1:59 pm and is filed under Global Warming B.S., Media Bias. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.  |  Print This Post Print This Post  |  Email This Post Email This Post

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