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Succesful applicant passes JREF prelimanary

Discussions about the James Randi Educational Foundation and its Million Dollar Challenge.

Succesful applicant passes JREF prelimanary

Postby Azrael » 10 Apr 2010, 02:11

..............according to Craig Browning.

He has repeatedly stated on numerous forums(i'll find the links later)that the JREF had an individual/s who passed the prelimnary challenge for the MDC. When asked for proof of this his reply is "Go find it yourself im not doing your research". Rather childish dont you think? WHy mention it as some kind of fact and revelation of JREF wrongdoing if no evidence is to be offered?
Personally I think it's a lie, a fantasy even. So this thread is here for any lurkers who can back up Browning's fantasy or for Craig to do so himself.

Lets be real here: to all the Randi haters this is gold dust, proof the challenge is a fraud, that they are liars etc. Why would Craig keep this info to himself?! :o
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Re: Succesful applicant passes JREF prelimanary

Postby Nostradamus » 10 Apr 2010, 02:17

There was the kidney vision young lady that tested. Oh, that's right she failed to pass the preliminary. She tried. That's what's important. She believed she could do it and she tried. She found it reasonable to agree to a protocol. She attended the session at her own expense I might add. She did that because she believed in herself. I am stating names here on purpose so that people do not think I mean them, but HF2 and the professor did not try. It is my belief that they did not believe they could do it. They knew they were fakes while this kidney vision person believed in themselves and tested.
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Re: Succesful applicant passes JREF prelimanary

Postby Craig Browning » 10 Apr 2010, 22:54

Nostradamus wrote:There was the kidney vision young lady that tested. Oh, that's right she failed to pass the preliminary. She tried. That's what's important. She believed she could do it and she tried. She found it reasonable to agree to a protocol. She attended the session at her own expense I might add. She did that because she believed in herself. I am stating names here on purpose so that people do not think I mean them, but HF2 and the professor did not try. It is my belief that they did not believe they could do it. They knew they were fakes while this kidney vision person believed in themselves and tested.


To a point you are on mark, many back out at the last minute because they do know they are frauds and are afraid of being "outed". I'm not familiar with this particular "Kidney Vision" thing you are speaking of, but there was the case of a little girl (I believe she was Russian) who had X-Ray vision (so to speak)... it was her father forcing her to do the challenge, etc. because he was counting the proverbial chickens well before the eggs were even laid... if his daughter could dumbfound the investigation team they would be rich & famous... but that, as I've pointed out before, is one of the most common reasons so many volunteer for the challenge -- 1.) the fact that many seasoned psychics see it as the "Randi Psychic Retirement Program" -- you get on Tv, Radio and in various magazines battling with the old perv which stimulates speaking engagements, book deals, etc. and thus, you end up making enough money over a few short years to retire... so what if you "fail the test" you still win at the end of the day... 2.) The less seasoned see participation as a means by which to prove themselves and again, gain a higher level of "professional" recognition... it's an ego thing.

The case I've been referring to is Yellow Bamboo (Qi Gong) though I'm aware of other instances in which test subjects have screamed foul for similar reasons.

Oh Yes... I've heard all the "explanations" such as the footage is too dark in the video... someone else standing in the group made things happen, etc.

Seems that the philosophy of the JREF is that If a Magician can Replicate What the Psychic/Claimant Does, It Proves Fakery... It's a delusional course of thought in that the job of a magician is to do just that; make the miraculous possible. I can assure you, there are many things out there in this big world magicians cannot replicate; not under the same exact conditions and settings I've witnessed some of these things under. But then this is one of the reasons groups like the JREF and CSICOPS pick and choose what they will and wont look into... you only bet on the games you know you can win after all.

The bottom line is quite simple, the Million Dollar Challenge is an elaborate April Fools gag that a bunch of intellectual fools bought into, so much so that they evolved it into a Cult that supports an individual of questionable morality as its guru, deliberately hiding behind various tax laws as a "non-profit educational" foundation... vs. the Evangelic arm of the American Atheist movement that it really is.

The way the challenge is arranged, the legal wording & semantic/linguistic-based duplicity set within prevents anyone from ever being able to pass the test... it goes outside the parameters common to traditional scientific research with its demands of proof and conveniently discounts certain scientific perspectives that might otherwise allow a participant to "win"... in other words, the deck is stacked! The topper being that a non-scientist has final say to it all... Randi himself. I can assure you, Mr. Ego will never admit to being wrong... it's taken him 60 years to finally admit to something everyone already knew about him so why should this be any different? :roll:
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Re: Succesful applicant passes JREF prelimanary

Postby Azrael » 11 Apr 2010, 02:44

Craig Browning wrote:
The case I've been referring to is Yellow Bamboo (Qi Gong) though I'm aware of other instances in which test subjects have screamed foul for similar reasons.

Oh Yes... I've heard all the "explanations" such as the footage is too dark in the video... someone else standing in the group made things happen, etc.

I guessed as much, but still you talk rubbish http://michaelprescott.typepad.com/mich ... _reed.html

Seems that the philosophy of the JREF is that If a Magician can Replicate What the Psychic/Claimant Does, It Proves Fakery... It's a delusional course of thought in that the job of a magician is to do just that; make the miraculous possible.

No mention in the MDC rules about any magicians replicating it,and that is all that counts.

I can assure you, there are many things out there in this big world magicians cannot replicate; not under the same exact conditions and settings I've witnessed some of these things under.

More waffle? Anecdotal evidence is worthless.
{quote] But then this is one of the reasons groups like the JREF and CSICOPS pick and choose what they will and wont look into... you only bet on the games you know you can win after all. [/quote]

I dont know about CSICOPS but the JREF rules are published fairly, sure there are people they wont test(check the rules for reasons why) but there are many many they will test. Psychics,mediums,dowsers,telekinetics ,X ray eys, levitations etc.all can apply; so under your poor excuse these are bets the JREF know they can win ?
No-one holds a gun to their head at the JREF, they apply because they want a million dollars.

The bottom line is quite simple, the Million Dollar Challenge is an elaborate April Fools gag that a bunch of intellectual fools bought into, so much so that they evolved it into a Cult that supports an individual of questionable morality as its guru, deliberately hiding behind various tax laws as a "non-profit educational" foundation... vs. the Evangelic arm of the American Atheist movement that it really is.


More bullshit. Its a test that both parties agree on ,just like most challenges so must be a lot of april fool gags around.If you think they are breaking laws regarding tax or "hiding" doing something illegal,then report them. You dont think before typing Craig. You listen to Callahan too much,another fool.

The way the challenge is arranged, the legal wording & semantic/linguistic-based duplicity set within prevents anyone from ever being able to pass the test...


Proof of your dumb claims? It's easy: You say you can fly, step out of the window and do it twice and win,its so simple.
it goes outside the parameters common to traditional scientific research with its demands of proof and conveniently discounts certain scientific perspectives that might otherwise allow a participant to "win"... in other words, the deck is stacked{/quote]
It isnt a scientific test! Randi says so himself! The topper being that a non-scientist has final say to it all... Randi himself.
I can assure you, Mr. Ego will never admit to being wrong... it's taken him 60 years to finally admit to something everyone already knew about him so why should this be any different? :roll:



If soemone has genuine powers and thinks JREF cheated them(in a mutually agreed results test) then go elsewhere and prove it! Randi is just one person,or better yet take legal action! Strange how no-one ever does? Your argument is the same as Koneig's and Callahans, a magician who believes in paranormal. Well I got news for you Craig your argument is dumb. Your cannot show one iota of proof for anything you claim!

If someone had genuine paranormal ability Im damn sure they could find some recognised confirmation form a scientific body. Yet they never do. Complain about Randi and JREF if it makes you feel better,but you fail to see its a big world out there,Randi is one man! Its so easy to win the JREF challenge, just prove something above chance!
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Re: Succesful applicant passes JREF prelimanary

Postby Eteponge » 11 Apr 2010, 05:26

Azrael wrote:still you talk rubbish http://michaelprescott.typepad.com/mich ... _reed.html

Michael Prescott later did a follow up to that story here ...

http://michaelprescott.typepad.com/mich ... llow_.html

"A short time ago, I wrote a post on James Randi's rejection of a paranormal claim made by an Indonesian group called Yellow Bamboo. I defended Randi, saying that his rejection was justified because the preliminary test was poorly conducted. One commenter, however, pointed out:

"If Randi has the ability to dismiss the results of his tests by merely showing how claimants could have cheated, what would prevent him from doing this if a claimant succeeded through truly paranormal means?"

Having thought about it some more, I've changed my mind and now agree with this comment. Ex post facto explanations, after all, can be invented to "explain" anything. Suppose I were to claim that I can levitate a table through psychic power. A Randi representative is duly dispatched to my home. I close my eyes, and a table floats off the floor and hovers in midair. The rep then reports back to Randi that he saw the table rise. Is Randi then justified in saying, "Well, the table could have been raised on hidden wires ... or it could have been drawn upward by a magnet ... or the rep could have been hypnotized into thinking he saw the table rise"?

While any of these things may be possible, the burden of proof is on Randi to back up these claims. Otherwise, he can make up any old story, no matter how far-fetched. (Of course he would say that no trickery is more far-fetched than the existence of paranormal phenomena in the first place. But this merely begs the question, since the existence of the paranormal is the issue being tested.)

The bottom line is that Yellow Bamboo claimed they could knock a Randi representative to the ground without physical contact; the test was carried out; the rep was knocked to the ground and was unaware of any physical contact. (This is not to say that no contact occurred, only that he didn't perceive it.) Therefore Yellow Bamboo passed the preliminary test.

It does no good to come up with ad hoc explanations after the fact. Randi should have invited Yellow Bamboo to Florida for a decisive test, rather than cavalierly dismissing their claim on the basis of a mere supposition."
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Re: Succesful applicant passes JREF prelimanary

Postby Nostradamus » 11 Apr 2010, 06:32

From our very own forum is: http://www.debunkingskeptics.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=8&t=616&p=6727&hilit=ikonen#p6727

In this case a woman named Anita Ikonen. She believed that she could see into people. In at least one instance she was able to state something about a person's kidney. She was given the opportunity to test. She accepted the challenge. There are wimps out there with all sorts of claims that haven't got the fortitude that Anita showed.

Like it or not some of this information comes from a skeptic that was actually there during the testing.

From http://skepticblog.org/2009/12/05/girls-who-stare-at-kidneys/
If there’s one thing more frustrating than trying to get paranormal claimants to prove their abilities, it’s getting them to admit they failed after flunking a legitimate test.


(It should be noted that setting up this demonstration is probably one of the most elaborate efforts ever to give a claimant an opportunity to show her stuff. We had to find, house, feed, and entertain 18-20 volunteers (4 of whom were missing kidneys – preferably right kidneys), secure a very expensive ultrasound machine (and a technician to run it), videotape and live stream the entire proceedings


The skeptics are very clear to point out they were not the only ones bearing costs.

If Anita hadn’t flown herself to L.A. and sent a $750 deposit to cover our out-of-pocket expenses, all this would not have happened.


So this cost everyone a bit of pocket change from the testers to the claimant.

All things being equal, the odds to accurately pick all three missing kidneys were 1728 to 1. The probability equation for the 3 groups of six people (12 possible kidneys per group to choose from) looks like this:

(1/12) x (1/12) x (1/12) = 1/1728

These odds were a lot easier than what she’d have to beat if she were testing for the $50,000. But this was only a demonstration, so we gave her a fighting chance – something like hitting two numbers in a row on a roulette wheel – not impossible by luck alone, but not easily won either.


But even though she clearly failed the test, I have a problem. She got one right.

This is an important statement that we'll get back to.

she had about a 1 in 4 chance (about 23%) of getting at least one choice right. Put in perspective, would you be amazed if someone asked you to guess a number from 1 to 4 and you got it right? Would that suggest paranormal ability?


So which kidney do you suppose she chose every time? The left! Every time.


So why is getting one right a problem. It has left the door open for Anita to request further testing. What she did was guess the left kidney every time. There is a good reason to do that. People missing kidneys are usually donors. Donors give up their left kidney. So why guess a right kidney when that is a rarity? The original odds of 1/1728 suppose that there is the same chance of a left or right kidney being missing. If only lefts were missing, then the odds drop to 1/216. And then the odds of getting 1 correct are even better. But Anita's problem was that playing the odds was not going to work here. She wants to retest for the $50K prize. Even if she pays $2000 a pop she has 25 chances to break even on her testing. If the odds were as low as 1/216 and if she could find another way to further reduce the odds against her, then she might be able to win after a large number of tests - assuming odds weren't too high.
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Re: Succesful applicant passes JREF prelimanary

Postby Nostradamus » 11 Apr 2010, 09:14

Isn't the yellow bamboo test the one in which the guy was supposed to be able to stop someone running at him without touching. This test was done on a beach in the evening or at night. As I recall the guy running was suddenly surprised to see that a number of the YBs ran with him towards the target and he fell. Wasn't there a strong suggestion that one of the runners used a taser on the runner?
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Re: Succesful applicant passes JREF prelimanary

Postby Craig Browning » 11 Apr 2010, 22:59

Nostradamus wrote:Isn't the yellow bamboo test the one in which the guy was supposed to be able to stop someone running at him without touching. This test was done on a beach in the evening or at night. As I recall the guy running was suddenly surprised to see that a number of the YBs ran with him towards the target and he fell. Wasn't there a strong suggestion that one of the runners used a taser on the runner?


Tasers require wire connections and leave welts... a person likewise shakes and jerks a bit when hit with a taser or shock glove, etc. in the case of the gloves, wands and such devices the subject will frequently favor the spot touched, even grabbing at it.... again, welts will remain (light burns). So the Taser explanation goes completely by-by.

Another theory is a wire was run across and the dude was clothes-lined... again, no proof of such. I'm surprised the JREF crew didn't claim a sheet of Plexiglas wasn't shoved out to make the dude stop suddenly :roll: (they so love inventing excuses... I mean, explanations :? )

I still say the Challenge is one big April Fool's joke in that it was first introduced on April Fool's day by an old fool of a magician that was just clever enough to exploit the intellects of the world so they wouldn't just support him but worship his wrinkled butt... :shock: some sucking up to it more than others :?


Oh! Though I know Jim and Slim I've never had much interaction with either and even went head to head with Slim a few times. So as is typical of you, YOU'RE ASSUMING things... including using the term "Psychic Powers" when I've pointed out dozens of times that THERE IS NO SUCH THING... it's a misnomer!
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Re: Succesful applicant passes JREF prelimanary

Postby Azrael » 12 Apr 2010, 00:59

Poor Craig,just cant bear that skeptics crush his fantasies. Or maybe you were rejected by Randi for a sucking up session? You seem to know so much about it.

Oh btw the challenge wasn't introduced on April 1st.
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Re: Succesful applicant passes JREF prelimanary

Postby Nostradamus » 12 Apr 2010, 06:25

Actually Craig the person that fell twitched in a manner consistent with someone that had been shocked.

The interesting thing is that a Yellow Bamboo master has been recorded on video being knocked down every single time. He was unable to deflect the attacker even once. Not once. Not a single time was he even able to defend against the attacker. The YB was knocked down 100% of the time.
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Re: Succesful applicant passes JREF prelimanary

Postby NucleicAcid » 12 Apr 2010, 09:44

The James Randi Educational Foundation officially came into existence on February 29, 1996, when it was registered as a nonprofit corporation in the State of Delaware in the United States.[1] On April 3, 1996 James Randi formally announced the creation of the JREF through his email hotline.


Also enacted a major revamp on April 1, 2007.

Close enough.
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Re: Succesful applicant passes JREF prelimanary

Postby Nostradamus » 12 Apr 2010, 09:55

So NA other than pointing out a possible coincidence what does this have to do with a candidate being denied the MDC test?
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Re: Succesful applicant passes JREF prelimanary

Postby NucleicAcid » 12 Apr 2010, 12:15

Not a coincidence, merely a bit of clarifying information.

I think the test is a little sketchy from details I've read (I haven't seen the actual video), but I believe it is what was agreed to by both parties. It is at best, a miscommunication, and deserves another prelim test at least. At worst, it's someone passing the prelim test by agreed upon conditions and Randi denying the validity of it post-hoc. It does not instill in me confidence that even if paranormal abilities were demonstrated directly in front of Randi, that he would shell out. You can't decide after the fact, after the rules are agreed upon, "Oh, you shouldn't have been allowed to do this one thing." He's the damn magician, he should have the foresight to have in print at the start of every test exactly what the required conditions are (ostensibly what he does, this incident casts doubt on it), and if those conditions are met, then that counts as a success. From Kramer's terms posted on the JREF forum, I can't see how the application did not fit the letter of the rules. The rep attacked and was knocked to the ground without being touched. Obviously it wouldn't count if they shot the rep or something silly, but they can't go claiming invisible tasers without any proof. I'd have to see the video myself really.

Here is a bit of Kramer's (one of Randi's coordinators) slime (Kramer gave the founder of Psipog a similar song-and-dance and deliberately misquoted the email exchange and put it on the forum without the sender's consent, so I trust little of what he posts on that forum)

http://forums.randi.org/showthread.php?t=34334

As something a father would say to a smarmy teenager, "I don't like your tone." If he isn't guilty of bait-and-switch, he's at least guilty of being seriously unprofessional and all around jerkoff.

I did see the videos by the Australian Skeptics, not too much to see, the attacker was able to tackle the Yellow Bamboo practitioner. I don't know much about the specifics of the YB art, but I have seen some Tai Chi and Dim Mak stuff in which the assailant (always is a student of the art) will attack the master, and the master will use "energy" to deflect them, and they do this rather strange flail backwards that looks rather psychological. It is possible this is a similar situation, there was no ability and during the AS test they failed to deliver, but I don't know enough about the situation to make that call. But I wouldn't be a true believer if I didn't also say there was the possibility that the mental intention of the attacker negated the mental intention of the martial artist. ;)
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Re: Succesful applicant passes JREF prelimanary

Postby Nostradamus » 12 Apr 2010, 20:31

The rep attacked and was knocked to the ground without being touched. Obviously it wouldn't count if they shot the rep or something silly, but they can't go claiming invisible tasers without any proof. I'd have to see the video myself really.

You're posting as fact what is in dispute.
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Re: Succesful applicant passes JREF prelimanary

Postby Nostradamus » 12 Apr 2010, 20:36

But I wouldn't be a true believer if I didn't also say there was the possibility that the mental intention of the attacker negated the mental intention of the martial artist.

Are you saying that it doesn't work? Sure sounds that way to me.

What I love about martial arts films is the funny display of non-Newtonian interactions between the combatants. It's the same here.
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