In re John Derbyshire: a selection

Here, loosely arranged, are some blog entries from the last few years on a subject one cannot seem to escape: the once-affable, now alienated; the once-watery Anglican, now atheist; the once-hard-line against Islam, now self-dhimmified; the once-conservative, now nihilist John Derbyshire. And, through it all, he’s still publishing at the flagship magazine of American conservatism, and still unceasingly prolific. Which is why one can’t get away from him. As I’ve said many times, if Derbyshire were writing the same things at some libertarian or atheist publication, one could ignore him, but his continuing, very active presence at the most prominent conservative magazine makes that impossible. He is a major fifth columnist within the conservative ranks, and the editors of National Review allow him to continue in that role.

General topics; and Derbyshire’s liberalism

Derbyshire on the war

Interesting thoughts on the war

Metropolitan conservatives

Derbyshire: pro-war, pro-restrictionist

Metroconservative defines deviancy down

If homosexuality is inborn, what should society’s position toward it be?

Clash of the titans
[The burning question at NRO at the moment, posed by none other than John Podhoretz, is whether John Derbyshire is a genuine conservative.]

Why the non-West and the West hate the West

Derbyshire (and America) Agonistes
[In a passionately written article, John Derbyshire expands on the staggering awfulness of CIRA]

Data is

Derbyshire recants

The never-ending Darwinian two-step

Derbhshire’s decisive rejection of conservatism, 2006

Derbyshire says Democrats are better on immigration

Derbyshire’s Democrat delusion

What made Derbyshire fall for Beinart’s transparently false argument?

“Derb” Agonistes

Derbyshire proves Bryan was right

The Derb supports immigration restriction—Not

A concession of defeat?

The “joke” and the Derb

Crunchy Christian Cons for the Derb!

Murray and Derbyshire turn against white America

Derbyshire proves Bryan was right

Derbism Unveiled [Devastating summary by commenters of Derbyshire’s liberal, reductionist, nihilist positions, e.g., fathers don’t matter and beliefs are epiphenomena. As someone said, what is someone who believes that ideas are not real and don’t matter doing writing at an opinion magazine?]

Derbyshire’s brilliant “proof” that there is no transcendent truth

Derbyshire on Islam

Derbyshire’s rejection of conceptual thought, cont. [July 2007. Discussion of Derbyshire article in which he argued that there is nothing meaningful about Islam and nothing worth knowing about it. See especially my comment beginning, “Derbyshire in his essay ‘Islamophobia’ embraces pure anti-intellectualism.”]

Derbyshire, reviewing Spencer, says any resistance to Islam is futile [August 2007. “While the end of the Christian West, contrary to what John Derbyshire suggests, is not plain, the end of John Derbyshire certainly is. He is a nihilist who, instead of looking for ways to revivify and protect our civilization, writes it off as doomed—doomed by Christianity. Thus his new-found opposition to Islam in this article, and his articulation of a policy that would defend the West from Islam, are not real. They are positions he picks up in order to discard with a contemptuous shrug. His one real agenda, his one abiding passion, is to discredit Christianity. And in order to accomplish that end, he would rather see our civilization Islamized and destroyed than try to defend it.”]

Derbyshire endorses Separationism, while attacking Separationists [September 2007. “In a little month, Derbyshire has gone from (1) dismissing the idea of a Muslim threat to the West, to (2) saying that separationism to defend the West from Islam would be a good idea, but that the West will never adopt it because the West is Christian and therefore weak, and so the West is doomed, but that’s cool because it shows how bad Christianity is, to (3) adopting the separationist strategy while attacking separationists and Christian critics of Islam as ‘Islamophobes.’ “]

Derbyshire deported from New English Review [October 2007. “Funny, but I’ve been told that one of the founding purposes of New English Review was to serve as an Islamo-critical vehicle. Since Derbyshire, in his inimitably vain, irresponsible, anti-intellectual, and liberal manner, has repeatedly trashed all serious Islam critics as ‘Islamophobes,’ neurotic obsessives, and people ‘who need to get a life’ (in his current comment he adds the illuminating insight that the Islam critics’ efforts are ‘auto-erotic’), naturally he didn’t belong at NER.”]

Derbyshire and Steyn pretend to talk about Muslim immigration [December 2009. Several readers sent me an exchange between the two authors on Islam, saying that it showed that they were finally realizing that Muslim immigration was a problem. In fact, it was more of the same. I wrote: “Instead of grappling with the issue seriously, Derbyshire takes the most obvious objection, that not all Muslims have Muslim names, and acts as though that makes it impossible to do anything about Muslim immigration. For Derbyshire, the existence of a single Muslim who changed his name from Daood Gilani to David Headley kills any possibility of keeping Muslims out of this country…. Most of the rest of Derbyshire’s entry is taken up with irrelevant recollections about how the English felt when the first Pakistanis arrived in England decades ago. Far from applying himself to the issue that he raised, he resorts to his usual ‘reminiscing about England’ escapism…. Derbyshire and Steyn are incapable of forming concepts and only deal with issues in terms of anecdotes, jokes, and asides.”]

Derbyshire gets personal

Replying to Derbyshire [As he’s done before, he mixes praise for my work with gratuitous and untruthful put-downs of me.]

Humor and seriousness [In response to my post, “The positive news from Iraq that has been suppressed,” a reader writes: And to think VFR is a humor-free zone!]

Derbyshire, me, and the H-bd list [Derbyshire’s dishonest personal smear against me, and my factual reply.]

Posted by Lawrence Auster at July 26, 2007 03:35 PM | Send

Email entry

Email this entry to:

Your email address:

Message (optional):