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Is James Randi conspiring against psychics? (from ATSNN)

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posted on Mar, 25 2005 @ 02:15 PM
I'm sure most of you are aware that James Randi has offered one million dollars to anyone who can prove psychic power exists. The problem is, Randi makes the rules and is the sole judge and jury when claims are made. His word is law and you get no appeals.
James Randi's "$1 million challenge"

Most people have heard of the challenge by James Randi offering $1 million to anyone who can demonstrate psychic powers.

On the face of it, Randi's challenge must be a good thing mustn't it? There's a million dollars just sitting there waiting to be picked up, and all anyone has to do to win it is perform under controlled conditions the kind of claim we read about every day in the newspapers -- spoon bending, mind-reading, remote viewing.

So doesn’t the mere fact that no-one has won Randi's challenge prove that such things are impossible? As usual in the murky world of "skepticism", things are not exactly what they appear to be.

Please visit the link provided for the complete story.

After reading the rules for myself I found one part that was quite fascinating. It reads like this:

"In all cases, applicant will be required to perform the preliminary test. This preliminary test is to determine if the applicant is likely to perform as promised during a formal test. To date, no applicant has passed the preliminary test."

I'm starting to suspect that James Randi is being less than honest with his little challenge.

I suppose all that is left to figure out is why.

Related News Links:

posted on Mar, 25 2005 @ 02:41 PM
Obviously the man is trying to prove a point and is to discredit the so call psychics.

He is treating the ability like it was something that can be control.

He is not going to find anybody that will fall withing his rules and that's what he wants, nobody.

posted on Mar, 25 2005 @ 02:42 PM
Why suspect that he is being dishonest? All they have to do is demonstrate that its worthwhile to formally test them, ie under controlled conditions so as to eliminate error and bias completely. If no one's been able to adequately pass the preliminary qualifiying tests, its probably because they are frauds.

posted on Mar, 25 2005 @ 02:46 PM
I couldn't even find what the Preliminary test was comprised of. I did find it interesting how he warrants the right to change the rules for each applicant, "ad-hoc", what a joke this guy is.

posted on Mar, 25 2005 @ 03:01 PM
Look into the Yellow Bamboo group of Bali. They were tested, and at first sight they appeared to knock Randi's representative down using their mental powers. If I remember correctly, this 'energy' came from the area itself. Randi dismissed the notion altogether despite claims from his own representative. I believe they were retested in Australia, but they failed to perform as they had in the past.
You can view a video of it somewhere. Randi said they used a handheld stun gun on his representative. lol

Either way if God himself issued a swift kick to Randi's forehead, he'd somehow find a way to dismiss it.

posted on Mar, 25 2005 @ 03:11 PM
Which is my point. If James Randi gets to make the rules, be sole judge and jury of the results and decide who can apply in the first place, then I don't think theres much danger of his parting with all that money.

I'm curious as to why though. Is it just for the publicity or does he actually have a darker purpose. Those who say something can't be done shouldn't stand in the way of those that are doing it.

Randi seems to be getting in the way.

posted on Mar, 25 2005 @ 04:21 PM
This is quite silly. Anyone with half a brain knows that governments around the world are implementing Remote Viewers for a while now, there's even a movie out on it called Suspect Zero that oddly was held from release for a couple years after it's completion.

James Randi should have a case with the CIA then and see if he would get anywhere trying to expose these people as frauds, I'm sure he would get far
. Sure, there are plenty of self proclaimed psychics that have a few screws loose and discredit the actual phenomenon. Why not deal with more reputable sources?

Naturally you don't do this when you are involved in whitewash.

posted on Mar, 25 2005 @ 05:28 PM
No, he is not conspirising against psychics. He is a man with an agenda. His agenda is preserving his beliefs, that many other skeptics share. It's a war for him and he is a crusader of his religion.

He does not care for whether the others are right or not, he is too proud for that, that is why he is a fool. Did you hear about him attending a UFO seminar and going to sleep through it?

You could walk up right to him and tell him everything about him, that only he would know, but because he is so blind and proud, his mind will refuse to listen to you.

We don't need to say he is conspiring with the government against the paranormal. It may be true, but we don't know that, and we are further unnecessarily multiplying quantities. It can be easily explained that Randi is simply a proud fool.

[edit on 25-3-2005 by Indigo_Child]

posted on Mar, 25 2005 @ 05:44 PM

Originally posted by mrwupy
Those who say something can't be done shouldn't stand in the way of those that are doing it.

Al the man is saying is 'demonstrate that you can do it'. THe example above is a good illustration. They were able to 'knock over' the guy in one place, but then, all of a sudden, couldn't do it again. If he was trying to jsut smear them, then why'd he agree to let them try to do it again in the first place?

No one has been able to demonstrate in a controlled enviroment that any sort of psychic or paranormal phenomena occur. To this guy, or to anyone else.

posted on Mar, 25 2005 @ 06:21 PM

No one has been able to demonstrate in a controlled enviroment that any sort of psychic or paranormal phenomena occur. To this guy, or to anyone else.

They have actually, parapsychologists have been doing it for several decades now

posted on Mar, 25 2005 @ 07:20 PM
Please cite the sources for this.

posted on Mar, 25 2005 @ 08:04 PM
Here's why they don't pass the tests:

* some are outright frauds. Penn and Teller have uncovered a number of them, as have many professional magicians. Having a cylinder move (like the "Russian psychic" did is very easy when you palm a piece of monofilament thread. I can duplicate that.

But if someone examines your hands and makes sure there's no threads and videotapes you to make sure you don't pull anything out of your clothing, and you suddenly can't do this Psychic Phenomina that you were able to do just 10 minutes ago... then it's fraud.

* some are deluded.

* some don't understand the test. They will make a claim ("You have to tell me if I'm channeling correctly and I will tell you about your dead relatives.") that is really not psychic. Heck, if the subject is allowed to say "yes" or "no" to your questions, MOST of us (including people that demonstratably are not psychi) can come up with a 70% hit on information on your dearly departed relative.

When asked "please tell us how you want the experimet set up: what are the results you're claiming, what is the percentage of time that you will get a success, and what the success is" -- most people don't respond with an experiment. They get mad and start huffing that Randi doesn't want to give up the money.

By the way, it's international skeptic groups and magicians who do the testing. Various people. Randi doesn't do it himself and the group varies, so there's no inherent bias.

Re the Yellow Bamboo test...

Here's where the YB folks made contact with Randi's organization. You can see them making the claims and doing the negotiations. The challenge was accepted:

here's the videotapes (and yes, you can see these guys' faces on websites so you know it really IS the YB):

Here's the discussion of the test with lots of questions answered:

Now... I think it was pretty reasonable, given all the promos that the YB does about how powerful and unstoppable their technique is. Supposedly even I could use it if I was being attacked by a stalker (and I'm 5'3", for the record) and defeat my stalker even if he wasn't angry.

Now, the Master can't defeat a rugby player in an open air setting.

I don't know about YOU guys, but I wouldn't trust MY life to a martial arts teacher who can't defend against a rugby player on the beach. My Kung Fu sifu could have tied the rugby player in knots... but Sifu Clark sure wouldn't have stood there and "projected" at the dude.

(btw, testimony to Sifu Clark's training... someone DID try to mug little me once ... two guys... they ran off after figuring that I was about six times as much trouble as they really wanted, even if I was a short and unarmed woman.)

Sooo... there's the facts and the pictures. Discuss away.

posted on Mar, 25 2005 @ 08:45 PM

posted on Mar, 25 2005 @ 09:03 PM

Originally posted by Nygdan
No one has been able to demonstrate in a controlled enviroment that any sort of psychic or paranormal phenomena occur. To this guy, or to anyone else.

Check this out.

posted on Mar, 25 2005 @ 09:22 PM
I suppose I should come clean here. I used to be a psychic. I had trouble living with myself and moved on to other things.

I would read the tarot for those who just had to know how something was going to turn out. I couldn't actually make a living on the money but still, it was extra money.

When someone came to me I knew they had one of two questions in mind. Their questions would either be about money or love. Why else would anyone turn to a psychic?

My spiel would start with the admonition that they were NOT to tell me what they were asking of the spirits. They were simply to shuffle the deck and allow me to read to them what the cards had forecast.

I knew what their question would be upfront. If they were brought to me by a girlfriend it was love problems. If they came to me on their own i'd go with money. As a teen I studied psychology and body language. If they were very tense it was probably money, if they were sad it was love.

I read the cards as they were actually layed out, but my descriptions of just what that meant was always explained in language that dealt with what they were so upset about they would actually consider a psychic to deal with it.

I was a charlatan. Yes, i took their money, but I told them what I knew they wanted to hear.

I never had one complaint. Not a single person EVER came back to me and said I had been wrong. To be honest, every person I read the cards for came back and said i was right on the money. Everything I had told them had come true.

That does not change the fact I was a charlatan.

I am not psychic. I'm simply someone who can read people and tell them what they want to hear. There are MANY out there who can do the same.

Trust not what you are told, but your heart in these matters.

Love and light,


posted on Mar, 25 2005 @ 09:56 PM

Originally posted by mrwupy
To be honest, every person I read the cards for came back and said i was right on the money.

Wallet in back pocket? Sitting? On the money. They were also right.

On to the point. How do you know that you were not really channeling info to them. Do you feel you were deceiving?

I often give readings to people but do so without charge. So I do it for feeling and I feel that I am mostly giving good advice.
Were your intentions mainly for money? Why did you start?

Thanks for reading, looking forward to your answers. If too personal then please private post me.

posted on Mar, 25 2005 @ 10:08 PM
I never meant to decieve. I never even asked for them to come to me. When I started reading the cards they just came, and offered me money. I never even had a set fee, they paid what they wanted to pay, often against my objections.

I told them what the cards said, but that does make me a psychic. It simply means I could read them the minute they walked thru the door and tell them what they wanted to hear, even if the news was bad.

The only deceit on my part was pretending to be psychic.

Love and light,


posted on Mar, 25 2005 @ 10:13 PM
I used to get all hot under the collar about this issue, but now I don't see the fuss. If psychics do indeed exist, the absolute worst thing that could happen is that they were proven to the world in some undeniable way. If it was proven that so-and-so was a psychic, wouldn't you distrust that person? If a person really could read minds, predict the future, and even attack people using solely their mental faculties wouldn't the CIA be all over this person? There are many people who would consider real psychics to be dangerous--people who could potentially cheat, manipulate, and harm other people in some undetectable way. Let Randi have his fun.

posted on Mar, 26 2005 @ 09:57 AM
I wonder what would happen if everyone realise that they could potentially become psychics. Everyone has the ability.

posted on Mar, 26 2005 @ 06:20 PM

Originally posted by TheBandit795

This is an experiment paid for by a cable television station.

They only used two women as their 'sitters'; the people that four 'mediums' were trying to get 'afterlife' information 'thru'.

Pretest information was obtained about each of the six deceased individuals that each sitter predicted might be received by one or more of the mediums

IOW the sitter's are expecting results, and lo and behold when they review the data they find it. This sounds like little more than an episode of 'Crossing Over' with heart rate monitors and lab equipment.

Using specially designed software, it was possible to examine ECG-triggered signal-averaging within the mediums and sitter (intrapersonal ECG / EEG interactions) and between the mediums and sitter (interpersonal ECG / ECG and ECG / EEG interactions)

How can they possibly claim that they are able to determine what brain activity is 'inter-personal'?

These are intersting in that they show that there isn't much of a relationship between the number of questions asked to the number of recovered informative 'items'.

This is how they determined accuracy apparently. They asked questions and the answers were either yes or no. This shows the percentage of yes answers.

[qipte]Medium 1, who obtained the lowest score (80%), only asked a total of five questions. Hence, it is impossible to claim that medium 1's percent accuracy ratings (see below) were due to "cold reading" and "fishing for information."
I don't see how that is a reasonable way to elimiate 'non-paranormal' effects. I'd've liked to have seen at least some 'mediums' who were people who were admited 'frauds' in the field, but who were succesful, be used.

Oh wow, john edwards was one of the mediums!

sitter one, whose husband died in a car crash a few days before Experiment II was to be conducted in June, 1999. She called L.G.S.R. to share her loss.

This is a horrible source of bias, tho admitedly a very difficult one to over come.

The entire experiment has no real controls, there's been practically no ability to keep the experimet objective and unbiased. I don't see how it can be admited as good evidence.

How do you know that you were not really channeling info to them

How can 'channeling' be said to be a real phenomenon if its going to be working like that? I mean, the guy just explained how he cheated these people, and you are suggesting that paranormal happenings from beyond were still getting thru?
And why? because he was 'right'? Because of that it might've been a paranormal happening? Thats simply not a good standard.

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