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Another example of a fraudulent "psychic"

Discussions about Psychics and Psychic Phenomena, Extra Sensory Perception, Telepathy, Psi, Clairvoyancy, 6th Sense, Psychokinesis, etc.

Re: Another example of a fraudulent "psychic"

Postby ProfWag » 25 Sep 2009, 02:54

quantumparanormal wrote:
ProfWag wrote:Dean Radin in Entangled Minds. I understand you have the book (probably several copies to include the audio version, one for next to your toilet, and several abridged versions to pass out to strangers on the street) so perhaps you can share with the class at which point in the book he proves "psi." Oh, wait a minute, I don't believe he states that after 30 years of research he has proven "psi," but rather, there is "evidence" of it. Not proof, evidence. Is that a solid enough reference of empirical data for you?


You've employed a typical pseudo-skeptic tactic: deflection. Instead of answering my question (above), you've replied to it by making exaggerations and insults (no less, you've stooped to ciscop's level). Exaggerations and insults don't help you prove your claim. They simply show your emotional immaturity. Additionally, you've answered my question not with an actual answer, but with a question of your own, which is unrelated: "... perhaps you can share with the class at which point in the book he proves 'psi.'" [emphasis added] You're trying to deflect having to answer my question, and I believe there's an obvious reason why: you can't answer it logically. "YET" means "up to the present time;" therefore, in essence, what you're saying is "that phenomenon has not been proven up to the present time." Since "psychics" have been making claims for many hundreds of years, I'd like to reiterate my original question: What empirical evidence do you have knowledge of that "that phenomenon has not been proven up to the present time?"

And by the way, even though this is irrelevant to the original topic about psychics, I'll ask it anyway: Where and when have I ever stated "psi has been proven?" I'd suggest you search all of my posts on this forum for the answer. Additionally, Radin himself never states "psi has been proven," nor is his book about research involving psychics of the sort to whom you are referring above. You really need to control those emotions: they cloud your better judgment and logic.


I apologize if you took that as an insult. I was trying to point out in a humorous way that you are extremely knowledgeable about Radin’s book. Looking back at it, I can see that I would have taken it as an insult myself. Again, I apologize.
I don’t know how to put quotes and all that stuff in so bear with me on my insertions:
You said “You really need to control those emotions: they cloud your better judgment and logic.” I will let outside readers decide if that was an insult to me or not.
You stated: “Where and when have I ever stated "psi has been proven?" I answer, I don’t believe you have said that (though show me if I did so I can retract that comment). So, not sure what you mean by that statement. I’ve never accused you of saying it’s been proven, although, I accuse you for having bias for the existence of psi. I have a bias for the non-existence. Neither one is necessarily bad as long as there are open minds. As I have stated earlier in this thread, your initial post implies that you believe there are good psychics and bad psychics. IMHO, a good psychic would be a psychic that does whatever they claim to do. A bad psychic is one who is fraudulent and/or essentially “steals” money. My interpretation anyway. Hence, that statement alone appears to show your bias for the existence of psi.
Next, you stated: “Additionally, you've answered my question not with an actual answer, but with a question of your own, which is unrelated: "... perhaps you can share with the class at which point in the book he proves 'psi.'" [emphasis added] You're trying to deflect having to answer my question, and I believe there's an obvious reason why: you can't answer it logically.” You took my statement out of context. I did follow that up with a question, But then, with an answer. However, you left my answer out of your quote. A little tricky QP. For anyone reading who might care, please refer back up to my actual comments.
Finally, let's look at what you asked: "What empirical evidence do you have knowledge of that "that phenomenon has not been proven up to the present time?" So, I'll reiterate my answer. Dean Radin in Entangled Minds is the basis for my concluding that psi “has not been proven up to the present time.” I'm not deflecting anything. You said above and he has said that it hasn't been proven. He has 30 years of empirical research into it and states in his book that it has not been proven. Simple as that. That’s my empirical data that backs my statement that psi hasn’t been proven up to the present time. Dean Radin’s own research. He has the statistics, the formulas, the subjects, the test protocols, and the results. To summarize his work in the field of parapsychology, he has evidence in psi, but he doesn’t have proof. That is my empirical data (not empirical evidence). What is it you don’t understand about that?
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Re: Another example of a fraudulent "psychic"

Postby NinjaPuppy » 25 Sep 2009, 03:15

ProfWag wrote: IMHO, a good psychic would be a psychic that does whatever they claim to do. A bad psychic is one who is fraudulent and/or essentially “steals” money. My interpretation anyway.


A good definition.
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Re: Another example of a fraudulent "psychic"

Postby quantumparanormal » 25 Sep 2009, 04:44

ProfWag wrote:I’ve never accused you of saying it’s been proven, although, I accuse you for having bias for the existence of psi.


I respect your opinion, although I can assure you my supposed "bias" is based on empirical data and evidence, not preconceptions or unsubstantiated beliefs.

ProfWag wrote:Finally, let's look at what you asked: "What empirical evidence do you have knowledge of that "that phenomenon has not been proven up to the present time?"

So, I'll reiterate my answer. Dean Radin in Entangled Minds is the basis for my concluding that psi “has not been proven up to the present time.”

I'm not deflecting anything. You said above and he has said that it hasn't been proven. He has 30 years of empirical research into it and states in his book that it has not been proven. Simple as that.

That’s my empirical data that backs my statement that psi hasn’t been proven up to the present time. Dean Radin’s own research. He has the statistics, the formulas, the subjects, the test protocols, and the results.

To summarize his work in the field of parapsychology, he has evidence in psi, but he doesn’t have proof. That is my empirical data (not empirical evidence). What is it you don’t understand about that?


What you've said makes no logical sense. Let me follow your reasoning. This is essentially what you're saying:

1) "Dean Radin in Entangled Minds is the basis for my concluding that psi 'has not been proven up to the present time.'"
2) "You said above and he has said that it hasn't been proven."
3) "He has 30 years of empirical research into it and states in his book that it has not been proven."
4) "That’s my empirical data that backs my statement that psi hasn’t been proven up to the present time."
5) "Dean Radin’s own research. He has the statistics, the formulas, the subjects, the test protocols, and the results."
6) "To summarize his work in the field of parapsychology, he has evidence in psi, but he doesn’t have proof. That is my empirical data (not empirical evidence)."
7) Therefore, "that phenomenon [about psychics] has not been proven up to the present time."

That's extremely weak inductive reasoning. I'm going to number-bullet the problems with that logic:

1) Again, this is a tactic pseudo-skeptics use: generalization. You've taken a specific case--psychics--and generalized it into the broad category of psi. Additionally, his book is not about research involving "psychics" of the type to which this topic and news article refer. Therefore, you are deflecting from the main subject.

2) You are incorrect: I never said, above, Radin "has said that it [psi] hasn't been proven." Please show me where I state those words. Regardless, Radin does not prove things; neither do scientists. They provide evidence that either supports or negates hypotheses, and it's up the reviewer to decide if that evidence qualifies as "proof" of something, but that's a subjective determination. You, on the other hand, have made a bold statement: "That phenomenon [about psychics, not psi in general] has not been proven up to the present time." It might not have been proven to you, but not to all of humanity.

3) Show me where in Radin's book he claims "it [psi] has not been proven." You are making bold claims. Please re-read what I said about Radin: "Additionally, Radin himself never states "psi has been proven ..." What you are apparently not aware of is that Radin has neither stated "psi has not been proven" nor "psi has been proven." He simply states he, and other scientists, don't set out to prove things. He doesn't state such things because to do so would be illogical, as proof is a subjective attribute. You state that Radin "states in his book that it has not been proven." Please show me on which page in 'Entangled Minds' Radin states this.

4) But this has nothing at all to do with this post's, and your, original topic, which is about psychics. Again, Radin's book is not about psychics of the sort to whom you originally referred. Again, this is deflection, as well as generalization, on your part. Again, your claim is not "psi hasn’t been proven up to the present time." Your claim is "that phenomenon [about psychics] has not been proven up to the present time." What you are in essence saying is that a) psychics claim to perform certain phenomena, b) Radin said "psi has not been proven," (which is false) c) therefore, the psychics' claims have not been proven. You have to be more specific than that. You are generalizing here.

5) Again, "Radin's own research... statistics, ... formulas, .. subjects, .. test protocols, and .. results" are not based on experiments involving psychics of the type which you refer to as "those people who call themselves 'psychics,' 'psychic advisors,' 'psychic mediums,' etc." You have shown your preconception about Radin and his book. Unlike people such as Schwartz, Radin doesn't study the claims made by such psychics.

6) Now this makes absolutely no sense whatsoever. What you're saying here is that Radin's "summarization of his work in the field of parapsychology," his "evidence in psi," and "he doesn’t have proof" is your "empirical data." The first obvious problem with your statement is that a summarization is not actual "data." It's a summarization. The second problem is that his "evidence in psi" does not include that obtained via experimentation with "psychics," and that would make sense: Radin doesn't conduct that type of research. The third problem is that him "not having proof" of psi does not qualify as "empirical data" of the sort that can substantiate your claim. The fourth problem, and again, Radin never stated "he doesn’t have proof," but that wouldn't matter, as he admits he's not out to provide "proof" of psi. He's out to provide evidence for psi, and he surely has provided that. It's up to each person to decide whether or not that evidence proves something.

7) Points #1 through #6 in no way substantiate your claim that "that phenomenon [about psychics] has not been proven up to the present time." In essence, here's your logic:

1) Dean Radin "says" "psi has not been proven."
[False; he never stated that; how could he demonstrate empirically all of psi "has not been proven?"]
2) Therefore, "that phenomenon [about psychics] has not been proven up to the present time."
[False]

It makes no sense whatsoever.
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Re: Another example of a fraudulent "psychic"

Postby quantumparanormal » 25 Sep 2009, 07:36

Here's what Radin concludes in his book, 'Entangled Minds':

Radin wrote:The existence of a few basic psi effects is now sufficiently well established to persuade most scientists who study the evidence with a critical eye, and without prejudice, that something interesting is going on. The "something interesting" here is profoundly important from a scientific perspective and deserves serious attention.

That said, it's also important to clarify that there are many other claims associated with psi where the scientific evidence isn't very persuasive, or where the claims could not be verified under scrutiny, or where interpretations of the experimental results are still ambiguous. This includes large-scale physical effects like levitation and teleportation, smaller-scale physical effects like metal bending and movement of small objects, claims of "psychic surgery," the precise nature of apparitions and out-of-body experiences, and so on.[1]

Also bear in mind that just because there's reason to believe that a few psi effects are real, this doesn't automatically mean that everything "paranormal" is suddenly true.[2] Claims of Elvis and Bigfoot drag racing UFOs in the Bermuda Triangle should not be confused with the results of controlled laboratory experiments. Maintaining an open mind is essential when exploring the unknown, but allowing one's brains to fall out in the process is inadvisable.


I hope that puts people's preconceptions about Radin's conclusions regarding psi to rest.

[1] This includes claims of the sort made by the types of psychics of which this post/news article is about.
[2] Similarly, also bear in mind that just because there's reason to believe that a few psi effects are not real, such as those claimed by psychics, this doesn't automatically mean that everything "paranormal", or all psi phenomena, is/are suddenly false.

The claim that "that phenomenon [about psychics] has not been proven up to the present time" must be true because Radin said "psi has not been proven" is false. You're going to have to find some other form of evidence, and better logic, to backup your claim.
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Re: Another example of a fraudulent "psychic"

Postby ProfWag » 25 Sep 2009, 23:51

Once again you are showing your emotional bond with wanting so much for psi to be real. You deny and deflect the obvious points I have made to try to underline my view. You make these long, drawn out, critical posts in hopes that people reading this with think you know what you are talking about and believe in what you profess. You can call me immature all you like. Perhaps others have bowed down to your lengthy ramblings, however, your posts do not intimidate me in the least. Online debates can be seen by others who make their own decisions based on the material presented. I am quite confident in what I have posted, regardless of what you attempt to point out as false.
I’m not sure why you are wanting to fight me on this. Parapsychology, in any form (this includes, but is not limited to telephathy, clairvoyance, and psychokinesis), has not been shown to exist above a reasonable doubt. It is a field that has NOT YET been accepted by science and academia. PEAR worked alongside the auspices of Princeton for 29 years, yet when they shut their doors, Princeton had "no comment." That tells me something, even if they (Princeton) didn't. Many, many theories and experiments HAVE been proven to exist that have been generally accepted by the scientific and academic communities. Parapsychology is NOT one of them.
You stated in an above post:
“3) Show me where in Radin's book he claims "it [psi] has not been proven." You are making bold claims. Please re-read what I said about Radin: "Additionally, Radin himself never states "psi has been proven ..."
Quantum, if Radin never states “psi has been proven,” then logic and common sense states that psi has not been proven, according to both you AND him. If it has been proven, then he would make that proclamation for further study, research, and experimental replication. That’s what scientists do. Neither Dean Radin, you, nor any other scientist in the world (that I am aware of) have made the claim that they have proven parapsychology with replicated experimentation from outside, unbiased scientists. Psychics (using the term in the context you used in your opening post) is a form of parapsychology. It is not the only one as you well know. I am confident that I have read a statement by Radin himself that psi has not been proven. I will continue to look for it, though reading his words does little to stimulate my entangled and conscious mind..
You have stated “I respect your opinion, although I can assure you my supposed "bias" is based on empirical data and evidence, not preconceptions or unsubstantiated beliefs.” I would like to add my own statement. I respect your opinion QP, although I can assure you my non-belief in psi is based on empirical data and evidence, or lack thereof, and not my preconceptions or unsubstantiated beliefs. Sorry. Perhaps a mature individual can accept a person disagreeing with them.
Finally, you challenge me to find other arguments to backup my claim. Although my earlier claim is perfectly legitimate and I believe would be widely accepted by anyone reading this with the exception of yourself, I accept your challenge.

1.Parapsychology. Vernon R. Padgett, Steven Cody, Science, New Series, Vol. 223, No. 4640 (Mar. 9, 1984), p. 1014
2. Normal Explanations of the Paranormal: The Demarcation Problem and Fraud in Parapsychology
• Trevor J. Pinch
• Social Studies of Science, Vol. 9, No. 3 (Aug., 1979), pp. 329-348
• Published by: Sage Publications, Ltd.
3. (This is interesting in that Utts is pro-parapsychology and her conclusion is that there is an “anomaly” worthy of further study. Anomaly is something “different,” but certainly not proof of anything acceptable)
• Replication and Meta-Analysis in Parapsychology
• Jessica Utts
• Statistical Science, Vol. 6, No. 4 (Nov., 1991), pp. 363-378
• Published by: Institute of Mathematical Statistics
4. Parapsychology Fraud
• Jerome Liebelson
• Science News, Vol. 106, No. 12 (Sep. 21, 1974), p. 179
• Published by: Society for Science & the Public
5. Battling Pseudoscience
Henri Broch The Futurist. Washington: Nov/Dec 2000. Vol. 34, Iss. 6; pg. 12, 1 pgs
6. Psychology Today
Where's the science in Psi?
Ray Hyman. Psychology Today. New York: Jul/Aug 2000. Vol. 33, Iss. 4; pg. 49, 2 pgs

These are just a few of the articles that have led me to believe that parapsychology has not been proven and is a pseudo-science. I would ask for your impirical data that has led you to your conclusions, but I don't believe you have anything but Dean Radin's questionable works.
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Re: Another example of a fraudulent "psychic"

Postby ciscop » 26 Sep 2009, 01:10

:lol:
great post
a lot of interesting information

i already asked for the ¨overwhelming psi evidence¨
and all i got was a love letter

oh well
For every person who reads this valuable book there are hundreds of naïve souls who would prefer to have their spines tingled by a sensational but worthless potboiler by some hack journalist of the paranormal. You who now read these sentences join a small but wiser minority. Martin Gaardner (Psychology of the Psychic)
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Re: Another example of a fraudulent "psychic"

Postby ProfWag » 26 Sep 2009, 01:38

ciscop wrote::lol:
great post
a lot of interesting information

i already asked for the ¨overwhelming psi evidence¨
and all i got was a love letter

oh well

And I'm afraid that's all we'll ever get when asked for overwhelming psi evidence. I will be the first to admit that there is evidence. I am looking for more than that. I would like to see evidence that has been replicated by scientists other than who regularly post in the Journal of Parapsychology. I would like to see evidence for more than an a relatively insignificant statistical positive with experiments that have protocols that have been legitimately questioned. I would like to see something that makes me jump out of my seat and say "Wow!" Unfortunately, believers refuse to say they don't have that "wow" factor yet, but they instead emphasize that there is some evidence and that we should just believe that it's there.
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Re: Another example of a fraudulent "psychic"

Postby ciscop » 26 Sep 2009, 06:11

yep
i am yet to feel overwhelmed by psi evidence
looking forward to it!
is such an amazing rush when you get that kind of info
(i get it all the time by reading new methods/principles on mentalism)

but i guess all we are going to get
is attack threads on skeptics and how ¨subjective the wow factor is¨

long way to go before the party starts
For every person who reads this valuable book there are hundreds of naïve souls who would prefer to have their spines tingled by a sensational but worthless potboiler by some hack journalist of the paranormal. You who now read these sentences join a small but wiser minority. Martin Gaardner (Psychology of the Psychic)
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Re: Another example of a fraudulent "psychic"

Postby NinjaPuppy » 26 Sep 2009, 06:31

ciscop wrote:but i guess all we are going to get
is attack threads on skeptics and how ¨subjective the wow factor is


I guess that you fail to notice that this forum is called... www.debunkingskeptics.com?
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Re: Another example of a fraudulent "psychic"

Postby quantumparanormal » 26 Sep 2009, 08:00

ProfWag wrote:Once again you are showing your emotional bond with wanting so much for psi to be real. You deny and deflect the obvious points I have made to try to underline my view. You make these long, drawn out, critical posts in hopes that people reading this with think you know what you are talking about and believe in what you profess. You can call me immature all you like. Perhaps others have bowed down to your lengthy ramblings, however, your posts do not intimidate me in the least. Online debates can be seen by others who make their own decisions based on the material presented. I am quite confident in what I have posted, regardless of what you attempt to point out as false.
I’m not sure why you are wanting to fight me on this.


Once again, you are avoiding/deflecting having to deal with the fact you cannot substantiate your blanket claim that "that phenomenon [about psychics] has not been proven up to the present time," which is really what my debate with you is about. You use many excuses to deflect and "prove" your claim. For example, you say that "Once again I am showing my emotional bond with wanting so much for psi to be real," but you fail to discuss actual evidence, actual data. You simply use ad hominem arguments which simply do not, and cannot, demonstrate your claims are based in reality.

Here's your faulty logic:

1) "Once again you are showing your emotional bond with wanting so much for psi to be real."
2) "You deny and deflect the obvious points I have made to try to underline my view."
3) "You make these long, drawn out, critical posts in hopes that people reading this with think you know what you are talking about and believe in what you profess."
4) "You can call me immature all you like."
5) "Perhaps others have bowed down to your lengthy ramblings, however, your posts do not intimidate me in the least."
6) "Online debates can be seen by others who make their own decisions based on the material presented."
7) "I am quite confident in what I have posted, regardless of what you attempt to point out as false."
8) "I’m not sure why you are wanting to fight me on this."
9) Therefore, I, ProfWag, am correct is stating that "that phenomenon [about psychics] has not been proven up to the present time."

Items #1 through #8 do not substantiate #9. For #9 to be correct, you would have to empirically falsify every single claim ever made by a psychic, then you'd have to take that empirical evidence and convince all of humanity that it proves psychics can't do what they claim they can. Have you done this? I'm going to guess you haven't. Also, you can't expect to take a few failed experiments involving a few psychic's claims and apply those failures to the entire database of psychic's claims, which is exactly what you've done. That's just not logically possible. What you can do, however, and for example, is use a few failed psychic experiments to demonstrate that some psychics can't perform the abilities they claim they can, specifically the ones tested in those experiments, but, again, you can't apply the failures of a few to all psychics. The problem with your claim is that it's so broad, general, and far-reaching that it cannot be substantiated with empirical data. In other words, it's simply impossible to achieve.

You can, however, target certain claims. For example, you can say, "I can falsify the claim made by Uri Geller that he can do, or has done, **insert phenomenon/claim here**," but you can't go so far as to say you are able to falsify the claims of all psychics, which is essentially what you have done--a very bold, and rather dumb, move. That is a logical impossibility. Being that you cannot falsify the claims of all psychics, you cannot "prove" that what all psychics claim they are able to do is false. Therefore, you cannot state the following claim is true: "I, ProfWag, am correct is stating that that phenomenon [about psychics] has not been proven up to the present time." Got it?

ProfWag wrote:These are just a few of the articles that have led me to believe that parapsychology has not been proven and is a pseudo-science.


But that statement is a different claim, not the one you originally made about psychics. However, I do applaud you for saying it's your belief "that parapsychology has not been proven and is a pseudo-science," not that it's a "fact," "reality," or "has been proven."

That said, again, you are generalizing here: you have essentially proven to yourself that all of parapsychology has not been validated and is a "pseudo-science," all based on a handful of articles, opinions, and papers written by people with whom you agree, but not based on empirical data or evidence, but on bias and prejudice. The is evidenced by the fact that you never seem to discuss the actual data involved. You merely discuss the opinions of critics and their social status and organizational memberships, critics who also share your biased views.

To really prove to a majority of humanity that indeed psi has not been proven, you'd literally need to substantiate your claim by empirically dis-confirming every single empirical psi experiment that's ever been done that's shown psi-positive results. How could you do this? Well, by conducting experiments of your own. You'd, of course, have to replicate the experiments done by others, implementing stricter controls and rigorous methods/protocols. Only a handful of skeptics have actually conducted replication experiments, and many of them have actually ended up confirming hypotheses as a result. Those who supposedly have disconfirmed various psi hypotheses have actually been found to have employed flawed methods. Ask me for references. I'd be glad to furnish them.

Additionally, you might be able to criticize a few experiments here or there, pointing out their various flaws, but to say all of parapsychology has not been "proven" or is "false" due to a handful of articles, opinions, beliefs, and papers is simply impossible and illogical, and yet this is how you argue your point. I'd expect more intelligence from you than this, ProfWag.

Regarding parapsychology being a "pseudo-science," I'll repost this:

Myth: Parapsychology is a pseudoscience. It claims to be like other scientific disciplines, but it has no core knowledge base, no set of constructs, no set of standard methodologies, and no set of accepted or demonstrable phenomena that all psi researchers would accept.

Fact: In 1969, parapsychology was accepted as an affiliate of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), the largest scientific organization in the world and the publisher of Science, one of the top-ranked scientific journals. By inclusion in the AAAS, the Parapsychological Association is demonstrably a bona fide scientific discipline. By comparison, not one of the "professional" skeptical organizations, some of which even claim to be engaged in scientific investigation, is an affiliate of the AAAS. Assertions about the lack of core knowledge, constructs, and so on imply that to be scientific, members of a discipline must all agree upon a set of uniform beliefs. That's a quaint view of how science works. Pick up practically any scientific or scholarly journal and you'll quickly find that the researchers are always engaged in vigorous debates and controversies. The moment a discipline collapses into a single set of beliefs, constructs, or even methods, it's no longer science, it's religion. As for "standard methods," many of them are described in this book. (Radin, Dean. Entangled Minds. New York, NY: Pocket Books, 2006. p. 283)


After I posted the preceding, you argued that the president of the AAAS at the time was a psi-proponent, implying, of course, that's the reason for the PA's induction into the AAAS, which is completely false (http://www.debunkingskeptics.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=4&t=451&start=0&st=0&sk=t&sd=a#p4297). The presidents presiding around that time were not psi proponents. By making this false assertion, you implied that because the president of the AAAS at the time was a psi-proponent (which is false), that's the reason why the PA was inducted, and that somehow automatically makes the PA a pseudo-scientific organization. It's very easy to see how flawed your reasoning is.

But moving forward, despite your claim that parapsychology is a "pseudo-science," many disagree with you, and you are not in the majority about your belief:

Although surveys consistently show that most people either accept the reality of ESP or have had psychic experiences themselves, remarks such as this in the skeptical literature can give one the impression that all such phenomena are "scientifically impossible."

But many mainstream scientists do not hold this position. Two surveys of over 500 scientists in one case and over 1,000 in another were made in the 1970's. Both surveys found the majority of respondents considered ESP "an established fact" or "a likely possibility:" 56% in one and 67% in the other. (Carter, 2007, p. 90)


A 2001 nationwide poll cited in the National Science Foundation's (NSF) 2002 report asked the question, "Some people possess psychic powers or ESP. Do you strongly agree, agree, disagree, or strongly disagree?" This NFS-sponsored survey found that 60% of adult Americans agreed or strongly agreed with the statement. Earlier Gallop polls taken in 1990, 1996, and 2001 showed that these percentages have been increasing over time. These figures were presented in the context of demonstrating the deplorable state of science education in the United States.

This would indeed be discouraging, except that the report tiptoes around an interesting fact. When survey respondents were separated by education level, 46% with less than a high school education agreed that some people possess ESP, but a whopping 62% with high school or more education agreed. Among the "attentive public." those defined as "very interested" in a topic, "very well informed" about it, and regularly read a daily newspaper or relevant national magazine, a healthy majority of 59% agreed. Thus, the survey actually revealed that the belief in ESP was not explainable as a matter of poor education.

To check the NFS's findings, I examined data collected by the National Opinion Research Center, which is affiliated with the University of Chicago. This Center, one of the oldest academic survey research groups in the United States, collects in its annual General Social Survey a wide range of questions used to form a snapshot of opinions in the United States. One of the questions asked over the years has been about psi. The specific question I was interested in asks: "How often have you felt as though you were in touch with someone when they were far away from you?" The possible answers ranged from "never in my life" to "often." I compared those answers to questions on educational achievement, which ranged from 0 to 20 years of formal education. The ignorance hypothesis predicts a negative relationship--the more education you have, the less you should believe in psi. The actual result, based on 3,880 survey responses, was not negative. In fact, it was significantly positive, with odds against chance of 80 to 1. (Radin, 2006, pp. 38-39)


ProfWag wrote:I would ask for your impirical data that has led you to your conclusions, but I don't believe you have anything but Dean Radin's questionable works.


You are, again, showing that your beliefs about my knowledge of psi research are preconceptions, presumptuous. I have references and knowledge of and to many books and papers published in journals that relate to psi. You presume that I base my entire knowledge of psi on one person and one book (i.e., Radin and 'Entangled Minds' respectively). This is false. This simply shows your presumptuous nature. I mention Radin's book, 'Entangled Minds', often simply because it contains a wealth of psi research data, so it's appropriate for me to refer people to this one resource than to the many, many, many other forms of published empirical evidence.

Additionally, calling Radin's "works" "questionable" does not help you support your claim about psychics, nor does it demonstrate psi has not been proven. There are so many questionable things about you, but I'm not the one making irrational and unfalsifiable claims such as "psi exists because ProfWaf is a highly questionable skeptic." That would be illogical of me.

Furthermore, please show what in the empirical dataset Radin discusses is "questionable." Let's begin to discuss the actual data, for once.

Now on to your "evidence" that "parapsychology has not been proven and is a pseudo-science."

ProfWag wrote:Parapsychology, in any form (this includes, but is not limited to telephathy, clairvoyance, and psychokinesis), has not been shown to exist above a reasonable doubt.


You are, again, wrong. You cannot empirically demonstrate psi "has not been shown to exist above a reasonable doubt." That's a very obvious fallacy. What you can logically state, however, is state you, ProfWag, believe psi "has not been shown to exist above a reasonable doubt" for you based on this or that reason. It has been shown, above a reasonable doubt, to exist for many, many others, however. As a matter of fact, parapsychology, in many forms (this includes, but is not limited to telepathy, clairvoyance, and psychokinesis), has been shown to exist above a reasonable doubt for many scientists as well:

Although surveys consistently show that most people either accept the reality of ESP or have had psychic experiences themselves, remarks such as this in the skeptical literature can give one the impression that all such phenomena are "scientifically impossible."

But many mainstream scientists do not hold this position. Two surveys of over 500 scientists in one case and over 1,000 in another were made in the 1970's. Both surveys found the majority of respondents considered ESP "an established fact" or "a likely possibility:" 56% in one and 67% in the other. (Carter, 2007, p. 90)


ProfWag wrote:It is a field that has NOT YET been accepted by science and academia.


But that doesn't disconfirm the validity of all psi experiments, nor does it "prove" psi "hasn't been proven," nor does it substantiate your claim about psychics. In other words, a person's or organization's acceptance of a particular type of investigation or science is not per se evidence of its existence. As an example of what I mean, at one point in history, almost everyone thought the Earth was flat. Almost everyone accepted that premise as true. Did that actually make it true? No. It's flawed reasoning that would lead one to believe that 1) "It is a field that has NOT YET been accepted by science and academia;" 2) therefore, psi is false or haven't yet been proven. Those two claims are not mutually exclusive, so why state it as if they were?

Here's a very good explanation of why mainstream science and academia has not yet "accepted" psi:

The skepticism of those who run the scientific establishment is surely one reason why, throughout its history, the resources devoted to psi research have been extremely meager. Psychologist Sybo Schouten compared the funding directed toward parapsychology over the one hundred years spanning 1882 to 1982 and found that it was approximately equal to the expenditures of two months of conventional psychological research in the United States in 1983. The other reason funding is difficult to come by is that many private and public funding agencies have no wish to be associated with what skeptics call "pseudo-science." Is it any wonder they feel this way? Not when scientific journals continue to publish hostile attacks on the scientific validity of parapsychology. For instance, the prominent journal Nature published the following in a commentary by skeptical psychologist David Marks:

David Marks wrote:Parascience has all the qualities of a magical system while wearing the mantle of science. Until any significant discoveries are made, science can justifiably ignore it, but it is important to say why: parascience is a pseudo-scientific system of untested beliefs steeped in illusion, error, and fraud.


Clearly then, many scientists find the claims of parapsychology disturbing. The existence of psi implies that the minds of people can sometimes communicate, perceive events, and influence objects without the use of the five ordinary senses or their limbs. Science in its present state cannot explain these phenomena. This in itself should not be a problem: There are plenty of other phenomena that science cannot currently explain, such as consciousness, the placebo effect, and the fact that the expansion of the universe appears to be accelerating. But is the existence of psi in conflict with well-established scientific principles? (Carter, 2007, pp. 90-91)


Here's another reason:

The majority who believe that psi is real are forced to confront the problem of "forbidden knowledge," taboo topics that restrict the conduct, funding, and publication of certain ideas. An article on this issue in the journal Science in 2005 described the results of a survey on forbidden knowledge from scientists at prestigious academic departments in the United States. It found that most felt that "informal constraints" limited what they could study. These constraints included concerns over what they thought the news media, journal editors, activists or peers might think of their interests. Because of such social and political pressures, scientists shy away from controversial topics. As one respondent in the survey put it, "I would like to lunatic-proof my life as much as possible."

This is the state of affairs for research on ordinary topics, so you can imagine the situation for psi research. Traditional sources of funding hardly ever consider touching hot potatoes, and as a result there are fewer than 50 conventionally trained doctoral-level scientists around the world engaged in full-time psi research. (Radin, 2006, p. 7)


ProfWag wrote:PEAR worked alongside the auspices of Princeton for 29 years, yet when they shut their doors, Princeton had "no comment." That tells me something, even if they (Princeton) didn't. Many, many theories and experiments HAVE been proven to exist that have been generally accepted by the scientific and academic communities. Parapsychology is NOT one of them.


I'm beginning to wonder if you simply enjoy being wrong or if you're just ignorant. How does someone saying "I have no comment" equate to "Psi is false?" or "Psi has not been proven?" Again, your logic is extremely faulty, and you clearly show your bias here. You purposefully choose to believe that PEAR saying "no comment" means "psi is false" or "psi has not been proven." With that kind of flawed reasoning and bias, it's a wonder why I debate with you at all.

Regarding PEAR, read this:

Targ, physicists Edwin May, and many others have science replicated remote viewing under rigorously controlled conditions many times. Princeton University's Engineering Anomalies Research Laboratory (PEAR) generated one of the single largest remote viewing experiments. In a 2003 report, former psychologist Brenda Dunne (co-creator of PEAR) summarized 25 years of remote viewing (they call it remote perception) research. They conducted 653 formal trials from 1976 to 1999, involving 72 participants. Most of those trials were conducted precognitively... Their overall assessment of the matches in the 653 trials provided strong evidence that the results were definitely not due to chance (odds against chance of 33 million to 1). As Jahn (co-creator of PEAR) and Dunne wrote, "The overall results of these analyses leave little doubt, by any criterion, that the [precognitive remote perception data] contain considerably more information about the designated targets then can be attributed to chance guessing." (Radin, 2006, pp. 95-96)


In 1997, engineer Robert Jahn and his colleagues at the PEAR Lab, published a review of 12 years of experiments in their lab investigating mind-matter interactions. The experiments involved over 100 volunteers, all of whom attempted to mentally influence random number generators (RNGs)... They found that in all of their experiments using truly random sources, like those based on quantum events, the random outputs tended to match the directions that the participants intended. When wishing for high scores, the RNG outputs drifted up, and when wishing for low scores, the RNG outputs drifted down. By comparison, no positive results were observed when simulated random numbers were used, like those generated by software algorithms. They estimated that the magnitude of the PK efect was approximately equal to 1 bit of out 10,000 being shifted away from chance expectation. While this may seem like a tiny effect, over the entire database, this resulted in odds against chance of 35 trillion to 1.

Three years after the review of the PEAR Lab RNG studies, a large scale or "mega-trial" experiment was jointly conducted by the PEAR Lab, the Intitut fur Grenzgebiete der Psychologie und Psychohygiene in Freiburg, Germany, and the justus-Liebig-Univeritat Giessen, in Giessen, Germany. This three site consortium attempted to replicate the PEAR results using a similar design, similar equipment, and a preplanned series of trials. Though the replication attempt failed to provide significant outcome, the results were significantly similar to the original PEAR findings, with odds against chance of 20 to 1 (p = 0.05). Thus, while the outcome of the mega-trial was not independently successful in demonstrating PK effects, there was evidence that the same basic trend was repeated.

Given the strong results in the original PEAR studies, and the similar outcomes in the mega-trial test, the question naturally arises as to whether this effect has been independently replicated by other investigators. In 1989, Princeton University psychologist Roger Nelson and I conducted a meta-analysis of all known RNG studies published up to that time. Updating that analysis again for this book, I found 490 studies comprising a total of 1.1 billion random bits subjected to OK intention. The overall effect was small in magnitude, but associated with odds against chance of 50,000 to 1. Selective reporting was a problem, as a bite was missing from the lower left side of the funnel plot, so I applied the trim and fill algorithm and estimated the number of potentially missing studies at 105. In this worst-case adjustment for selective reporting, the overall level of significance remained significant with odds against chance of 3,050 to 1.

Then I calculated the number of file-drawer studies required to nullify the existing result--it came to 2,610. This means that each of the 90 authors reporting at least one RNG study would have had to conduct an additional 29 nonsignificant studies, and failed to report any of them. In a quality analysis, higher quality studies did not result in significantly lowered effects. So chance, selective reporting, and variations in study quality are--once again--not viable explanations for these results. (Radin, 2006, pp. 154-158)


ProfWag wrote:Finally, you challenge me to find other arguments to backup my claim. Although my earlier claim is perfectly legitimate and I believe would be widely accepted by anyone reading this with the exception of yourself, I accept your challenge.


False--your earlier claim is not perfectly legitimate." On the contrary, I showed that it's logically impossible. However, challenge accepted, although you cannot substantiate your claim that "that phenomenon [about psychics] has not been proven up to the present time," for the reasons discussed above. If by "proof" we mean "any factual evidence that helps to establish the truth of something," which is what I take it to mean in this context, you are dead-wrong. You cannot show 1) it is true that 2) that phenomenon [about psychics] 3) has not been proven 4) up to the present time. It's impossible. Like I said, because so many psychics have made so many claims over the years, up to the present, and because you'd have to convince everyone, you'd have to literally disconfirm each claim, one by one, then convince every person alive, one by one, that "that phenomenon [about psychics] has not been proven up to the present time." Don't you get it it's impossible? You should probably throw out that claim and make a more specific, targeted one. Until then, there's absolutely no logical doubt that your claim is absolutely false.

Furthermore, the fact that you think your "claim is perfectly legitimate and believe it would be widely accepted by anyone reading this" shows your presumptuous nature. You are presuming that people would accept your claim. How do you know this? How can you? It hasn't happened yet, so how is this possible? You would literally need to poll everyone who's read your claim and ask them if they agree that it's "legitimate" or not. Until that happens--if it ever indeed does come to fruition, your claim that your "claim is perfectly legitimate and believe it would be widely accepted by anyone reading this" is, like your original claim, false.

ProfWag wrote:1.Parapsychology. Vernon R. Padgett, Steven Cody, Science, New Series, Vol. 223, No. 4640 (Mar. 9, 1984), p. 1014
2. Normal Explanations of the Paranormal: The Demarcation Problem and Fraud in Parapsychology
• Trevor J. Pinch
• Social Studies of Science, Vol. 9, No. 3 (Aug., 1979), pp. 329-348
• Published by: Sage Publications, Ltd.
3. (This is interesting in that Utts is pro-parapsychology and her conclusion is that there is an “anomaly” worthy of further study. Anomaly is something “different,” but certainly not proof of anything acceptable)
• Replication and Meta-Analysis in Parapsychology
• Jessica Utts
• Statistical Science, Vol. 6, No. 4 (Nov., 1991), pp. 363-378
• Published by: Institute of Mathematical Statistics
4. Parapsychology Fraud
• Jerome Liebelson
• Science News, Vol. 106, No. 12 (Sep. 21, 1974), p. 179
• Published by: Society for Science & the Public
5. Battling Pseudoscience
Henri Broch The Futurist. Washington: Nov/Dec 2000. Vol. 34, Iss. 6; pg. 12, 1 pgs
6. Psychology Today
Where's the science in Psi?
Ray Hyman. Psychology Today. New York: Jul/Aug 2000. Vol. 33, Iss. 4; pg. 49, 2 pgs


You've really outdone yourself here. None of those 6 resources substantiates your claim that "that phenomenon [about psychics] has not been proven up to the present time." Those resources cover all sorts of different types of phenomena, but your claim pertains to those psychics of the sort to whom you are referring originally in this topic. Additionally, many of your resources are opinions about psi experiments and psi in general, not experiments themselves. How do you disconfirm a hypothesis? By conducting similar, replication experiments, that's how, and those experiments have to show the opposite effects, but not only one experiment would do. You'd have to conduct many related experiments, then have other researchers confirm your results, and so on. In other words, those people have not attempted to disconfirm psi hypotheses via experimentation; they simply criticize them, and they do a poor job at finding valid reasons why various psi experiments are "flawed." Regardless, where is the data in those resources that substantiates your psychic claim? And don't give me opinions, show me actual empirical data that proves your point. Be detailed; don't just give me links and state that those links per se represent empirical data.

In other words, in order for you to make a claim that psi has not been proven, period, which is what you've done, 1) hundreds of experiments would have to be carried out, 2) they would have to all be deemed valid by all, 3) they would have to be confirmed by other experiments, and 4) the majority of the results would have to end up disconfirming all psi-positive hypotheses.

Can you accmplish such a feat? So far, there are many more psi-positive results than there are negative ones, so the data is on the side of the psi proponent.

Similarly, psi experiments have been replicated numerous times. What do you think all of these meta-analyses are about? They are about taking the many, many experiments that have done and assessing their statistical strengths and weaknesses. Like I've said before, the data is on the side of the psi proponent, so far. Who knows, perhaps further experimentation will demonstrate psi has little support. It's hard to tell, especially since so few skeptics conduct experiments themselves. Speaking of this fact, let me have you read this:

Myth: The concept of a repeatable experiment in science means that any researcher with the proper expertise and equipment should be able to reproduce the reported results, not just those who are believers or enthusiasts. Parapsychology has never been able to produce a successful experiment that neutral scientists with the appropriate skill, knowledge, and equipment can replicate.

Fact: The meta-analyses discussed in previous chapters falsify this assertion, as does the more interesting question of what happens when skeptics try to repeat claimed effects. There are only a handful of examples. Consider the case of Stanley Jeffers, a skeptical psysicist from York University. In 1992, Jeffers tried to repeat PK experiments similar to those reported by the Princeton Engineering Anomalies Research (PEAR) Laboratory, He wasn't successful. His skepticism was fueled by another PK study he reported in 1998, which also failed. Then, in 2003, Jeffers coauthored a third study in which he finally reported a repeatable, significant PK effect. So, can skeptics produce successful experiments? Yes, they can. They just hardly ever try. (Radin, 2006, p. 284-285)


I can immediately think of two other skeptical individuals and organizations whom have conducted experiments aimed at disconfirming psi hypotheses and other anomalies, but having instead confirmed them. One is by Richard Wiseman, regarding the Jaytee experiments (1993-96), and the other is by CISCOP, regarding the 'Mars Effect' hypothesis (1976-77). We can discuss these if you'd like.

Regarding the Utts study you placed here--which baffles me why you would do such a thing, here's her conclusion, in part:

Utts wrote:The recent focus on meta-analysis in parapsychology has revealed that there are small but consistently nonzero effects across studies, experimenters and laboratories. The sizes of the effects in forced-choice studies appear to be comparable to those reported in some medical studies that had been heralded as breakthroughs. (See Section 5; also Honorton and Ferrari, 1989, page 301.) Free-response studies show effect sizes of far greater magnitude.
...
It may be that the nonzero effects observed in the meta-analyses can be explained by something other than ESP, such as shortcomings in our understanding of randomness and independence. Nonethless, there is an anomaly that needs an explanation. As I have argued elsewhere (Utts, 1987), research in parapsychology should receive more support from the scientific community. If ESP does not exist, there is little to be lost by erring in the direction of further research, which may in fact uncover other anomalies. If ESP does exist, there is much to be lost by not doing process-oriented research, and much to be gained by discovering how to enhance and apply these abilities to important world problems. (Utts, Replication and Meta-Analysis in
Parapsychology, Statistical Science, 1991, Vol. 6,No.4, 363-403)


Now, how does her conclusion convince you that "psi does not exist?" or that "psi has not been proven?" Logically, you can't construct such a conclusion without bias/prejudice. You are assuming that by her saying there's an "anomaly" that she is in essence saying "psi doesn't exist" or "psi hasn't been proven." In other words, you are putting words in her mouth. You've really shown your bias and illogical nature here. It's getting more and more unworthwhile for me to debate with you these issues, considering how illogical and biased you are.

Furthermore, how does her meta-analysis of non-psychic claims/experiments help substantiate your claim that "that phenomenon [about psychics] has not been proven up to the present time?" It doesn't, at all, as the meta-analysis has nothing to do with "psychics." Her meta-analysis covers controlled laboratory-style experiments involving phenomena such as PK and telepathy, not whether or not a psychic can help the police find a missing person by predict his or her whereabouts, for example. You are mixing apples and oranges here--generalizing, a tactic so many pseudo-skeptics seem to use, unfortunately.

Additionally, you've once again shown you don't consider the actual data obtained via such published papers, when forming your conclusions. You base your beliefs and conclusions about psi on a few excerpts here and there, from which you derive illogical inferences, which ultimately end up reinforcing your predispositions, preconceptions, and convictions, which is that psi does not exist. Let's take a look at some of the the data Utts discusses:

Utts wrote:6.3 Attempts to Influence Dice

Radin and Ferrari (1991) examined 148 studies,
published from 1935 to 1987, designed to test
whether or not consciousness can influence the
results of tossing dice. They also found 31 "control"
studies in which no conscious intention was
involved.

Results. The effect size measure used was
z/ 6,where z was based on the number of throws
in which the die landed with the desired face (or
faces) up, in n throws. The weighted mean ES for
the experimental studies was 0.0122 with a standard
error of 0.00062; for the control studies the
mean and standard error were 0.00093 and 0.00255,
respectively. Weights for each study were determined
by quality, giving more weight to highquality
studies. Combined z scores for the experimental
and control studies were reported by Radin
and Ferrari to be 18.2 and 0.18, respectively. (Utts, Replication and Meta-Analysis in
Parapsychology, Statistical Science, 1991, Vol. 6,No.4, 363-403)


Those are amazing odds. A z-score of 18.2 for the non-control experiments equates to odds against chance so large that I was not able to calculate it using Excel. Hell, even a z-score of 4 equates to p = 0.000032, which is odds of 31,250 to 1 against chance, so you can just imagine the odds a z-score of 18.2 would yield. In contrast, the control group produced a z-score of 0.18, or p = 0.428576, or odds against chance of 2 to 1, or simply just chance. However, even after accounting for, and removing affected trials affected by, the file-drawer problem, quality, and die issues, the z-score yet came out to 7.617, or p < 10-^11. That's odds against chance of over 1,000,000,000,000 to 1. Even if you can find more reasons why the trials are invalid, you would have to eliminate so many trials that it becomes less likely that doing so would yield valid odds.

Utts wrote:6.2 Attempts to Influence Random Physical
Systems

Radin and Nelson (1989) examined studies designed
to test the hypothesis that "The statistical
output of an electronic RNG [random number generator]
is correlated with observer intention in accordance
with prespecified instructions" (page
1502). These experiments typically involve RNGs
based on radioactive decay, electronic noise or pseudorandom
number sequences seeded with true random
sources. Usually the subject is instructed to
try to influence the results of a string of binary
trials by mental intention alone. A typical protocol
would ask a subject to press a button (thus starting
the collection of a fixed-length sequence of bits),
and then try to influence the random source to
produce more zeroes or more ones. A run might
consist of three successive button presses, one each
in which the desired result was more zeroes or
more ones, and one as a control with no conscious
intention. A z score would then be computed for
each button press.

The 832 studies in the analysis were conducted
from 1959 to 1987 and included 235 "control" studies,
in which the output of the RNGs were recorded
but there was no conscious intention involved.
These were usually conducted before and during
the experimental series, as tests of the RNGs.
Results. The effect size measure used was again
z/ A,where z was positive if more bits of the
specified type were achieved. The mean effect size
for control studies was not significantly different
from zero (- 1.0 x lop5). The mean effect size
for the experimental studies was also very small,
3.2 x but it was significantly higher than the
mean ES for the control studies (z = 4.1). (Utts, Replication and Meta-Analysis in
Parapsychology, Statistical Science, 1991, Vol. 6,No.4, 363-403)


In this case, the z-score for the experimental trials was 4.1, or odds against chance of 47,619 to 1. The control trials, however, produced near zero odds.

Utts wrote:6.1 Forced-Choice Precognition Experiments

Honorton and Ferrari (1989) analyzed forcedchoice
experiments conducted from 1935 to 1987, in
which the target material was randomly selected
after the subject had attempted to predict what it
would be. The time delay in selecting the target
ranged from under a second to one year. Target
material included items as diverse as ESP cards
and automated random number generators. Two
investigators, S. G. Soal and Walter J. Levy, were
not included because some of their work has been
suspected to be fraudulent.

Overall Results. There were 309 studies reported
by 62 senior authors, including more than
50,000 subjects and nearly two million individual
trials. Honorton and Ferrari used z / f i as the
measure of effect size (ES) for each study, where n
was the number of Bernoulli trials in the study.
They reported a mean ES of 0.020, and a mean
z-score of 0.65 over all studies. They also reported a
combined z of 11.41, p = 6.3 x Some 30%
(92) of the studies were statistically significant at
a! = 0.05. The mean ES per investigator was 0.033,
and the significant results were not due to just a
few investigators. (Utts, Replication and Meta-Analysis in
Parapsychology, Statistical Science, 1991, Vol. 6,No.4, 363-403)


Here we have odds against chance that are so high that most calculators produce "Infinity" as the answer. Again, after eliminating trials that are flawed due to poor quality, selective reporting, etc, one would have to find so many flaws in the trials to get the odds down to chance levels that it really becomes a ridiculous, futile, unnecessary effort.

If you'd like, we can get into the minutiae of the actual, individual experiments themselves, including discussing methodologies, statistical issues, etc.

ProfWag wrote:This is interesting in that Utts is pro-parapsychology and her conclusion is that there is an “anomaly” worthy of further study. Anomaly is something “different,” but certainly not proof of anything acceptable


Again, this shows ignorance on your part. This is essentially what Radin said as well (i.e.,he said, "Something interesting is going on."), and for good reason. They are not out to prove things, much like you are, as what qualifies as "proof" is subjective. What part of that can't you understand? They provide evidence for psi, not "proof" that psi is a fact, is reality, or has been proven. Why? Because for people like you, it will never be proven. What you have essentially done here is supported your belief that psi has not been proven based on a person saying psi-positive effects are "anomalies." Again, I'd expect more intelligence from you, ProfWag.

ProfWag wrote:I am confident that I have read a statement by Radin himself that psi has not been proven.


You keep on saying you're confident, but repeating the same claim does not suddenly make it true. What if I were to say I'm confident psi is a fact, repeating it over and over again. Would that be enough evidence for you? No, I bet it wouldn't. How can you reasonably expect me to simply take your confidence as evidence "Radin himself [said] that psi has not been proven?" Please show me the reference to where Radin has said such a thing. You are beginning to discredit yourself even more. It's baffling. I would expect such a thing from ciscop, but not from you.

You suffer from the same psychological condition Hebb did back in 1951:

Why do we not accept ESP as a psychological fact? Rhine has offered enough evidence to have convinced us on almost any other issue... Personally, I do not accept ESP for a moment, because it does not make sense. My external criteria, both of physics and of physiology, say that ESP is not a fact despite the behavioral evidence that has been reported. I cannot see what other basis my colleagues have for rejecting it... Rhine might still turn out to be right, improbable as I think that is, and my own rejection of his view is--in the literal sense--prejudice. (Hebb, 1951, p. 45)
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Re: Another example of a fraudulent "psychic"

Postby quantumparanormal » 26 Sep 2009, 08:03

NinjaPuppy wrote:
ciscop wrote:but i guess all we are going to get
is attack threads on skeptics and how ¨subjective the wow factor is


I guess that you fail to notice that this forum is called... http://www.debunkingskeptics.com?


NP, ciscop is not worth debating, IMO. After a while, you realize how futile and a waist of time it is discussing issues with someone who's not at par:

http://www.debunkingskeptics.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=13&t=378#p4801
http://www.debunkingskeptics.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=4&t=510
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Re: Another example of a fraudulent "psychic"

Postby ciscop » 26 Sep 2009, 11:12

quantumparanormal wrote:
NinjaPuppy wrote:
ciscop wrote:but i guess all we are going to get
is attack threads on skeptics and how ¨subjective the wow factor is


I guess that you fail to notice that this forum is called... http://www.debunkingskeptics.com?


NP, ciscop is not worth debating, IMO. After a while, you realize how futile and a waist of time it is discussing issues with someone who's not at par:

http://www.debunkingskeptics.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=13&t=378#p4801
http://www.debunkingskeptics.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=4&t=510


debunking skeptics is different than ATTACKING skeptics

and did you read his post Ninjapuppy?
how can i respond to him?
oh ! i know
by remind him he is the one that believes in guys melting brains in india to pull out a MAGIC TRICK (explanation of indian rope trick according to quackdin)
but when you think about it... that could actually happen.. radin already melted his brain
:lol:
For every person who reads this valuable book there are hundreds of naïve souls who would prefer to have their spines tingled by a sensational but worthless potboiler by some hack journalist of the paranormal. You who now read these sentences join a small but wiser minority. Martin Gaardner (Psychology of the Psychic)
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Re: Another example of a fraudulent "psychic"

Postby ProfWag » 26 Sep 2009, 21:08

QP, Based on our PM, I have decided that your blatant support of psychic mediums, pet psychics, astrologers, and other fields of the paranormal that encourage fraud, deception, and potentially criminal activities, coupled with the fact that so few people are actually reading our debate, I'm not going to waste my time wih this subject any longer. Your rambling posts that deflect rather than accept simple facts are obviously a desparate attempt to advertise a field of study that has simply not been accepted by mainstream science or academia. Period.
Have a good day.
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Re: Another example of a fraudulent "psychic"

Postby quantumparanormal » 26 Sep 2009, 23:57

ProfWag wrote:QP, Based on our PM, I have decided that your blatant support of psychic mediums, pet psychics, astrologers, and other fields of the paranormal that encourage fraud, deception, and potentially criminal activities, coupled with the fact that so few people are actually reading our debate, I'm not going to waste my time wih this subject any longer. Your rambling posts that deflect rather than accept simple facts are obviously a desparate attempt to advertise a field of study that has simply not been accepted by mainstream science or academia. Period.
Have a good day.


Just as a I thought, you've provided lame, unsubstantiated, and irrelevant excuses in an effort to escape your having to substantiate your bold, blatant claims.

1st excuse:
What you've done is visited my Myspace profile, seen various links, research, people, organizations, books, and blogs related to a very broad range of paranormal phenomena and concluded presumptuously that I "blatantly support psychic mediums, pet psychics, astrologers, and other fields of the paranormal that encourage fraud, deception, and potentially criminal activities," yet you will not find a single statement from me anywhere in which I claim, or even imply, I "support psychic mediums, pet psychics, astrologers, and other fields of the paranormal that encourage fraud, deception, and potentially criminal activities." Just because there is information about many different things on my Myspace profile, it does not, and should not, imply that I agree with all of those things. Have I stated anywhere that I support psychic mediums? Have I stated anywhere I support pet psychics? Have I stated anywhere I support astrologers? Have I stated anywhere I support those who "encourage fraud, deception, and potentially criminal activities?" No, you can't, and yet you infer that I do. Not to be too rude, but that's just dumb logic. Again, you are generalizing and using faulty logic, something you seem to do so very well. What you actually do not know is the fact that I personally have a bias against anyone who might "blatantly support psychic mediums, pet psychics, astrologers, and other fields of the paranormal that encourage fraud, deception, and potentially criminal activities." Therefore, you are using your presumption as an excuse to get out of a situation in which you cannot win, as none of what is shown on my Myspace profile substantiates your bold claim that "that phenomenon [about psychics] has not been proven up to the present time."

2nd excuse:
Your second lame excuse is that we should not continue our debate because "few people are actually reading our debate." First of all, how do you know it's true "few" people are reading our debate? What evidence do you have of this? How can you know how many people are reading our debate based solely on this topic's view count? This is yet another example, and proof, of how you are prone to making bold claims you simply cannot backup, that and plain faulty logic. Second of all, so what? What number of people reading this post would it take for you to continue? 10? 100? 1,000? This debate is about you not being able to substantiate your bold, blatant claim, which I have challenged you to substantiate. Others have not challenged you, so why worry about what anyone else thinks? This is about you and I and your bold claim, not how many people read our debate. What a lame excuse.

3rd excuse:
Your third lame excuse is that I'm rambling, or "tending to depart from the main point or cover a wide range of subjects." Oh, how hypocritical and contradictory you are. You have just contradicted yourself in a big way. If you read my previous post, you'll notice how I try to keep you on topic, which is about your claim about psychics, yet you continue to sway from it because you know you can't substantiate it; it's impossible to do so, and you know it, so you depart, deflect, overgeneralize, and make excuses accordingly. For example, you state that "rather than accept simple facts are obviously a desparate attempt to advertise a field of study that has simply not been accepted by mainstream science or academia." Besides that being a blatant lie, what, at all, does that have to do with your claim that "that phenomenon [about psychics] has not been proven up to the present time?" Nothing. You are a hypocrite because you have accused me of "deflecting" from the main topic when it's so obvious you have done so yourself, numerous times; just look at my previous post for many examples, evidence of this.

4th excuse:
You claim I'm "deflecting rather than accepting simple facts [that] are obviously a desparate attempt to advertise a field of study that has simply not been accepted by mainstream science or academia." What simple facts are obvious? How am I desperate to advertise this field? What field? Do you have evidence I'm trying to "desperately advertise this field?" You are--again--deflecting from the main point. The fact is that you cannot substantiate your claim that "that phenomenon [about psychics] has not been proven up to the present time," because in order to do so, you'd have to disconfirm every single claim every psychic has ever made, then prove it to the world. That's impossible! Your problem is that you make generalized, bold claims that you simply cannot prove. You do this because you have this worldview that everything paranormal is false, a fraud, criminal, etc, and it's a conviction that's backed up by illogical and irrational thinking. Rather than make specific claims, such as that, for example, "you can empirically demonstrate that the majority of psychics who claim are able to help police find reported missing persons are in fact not capable of doing so;" you instead make unprovable, broad, generalized claims, such as "that phenomenon [about psychics] has not been proven up to the present time." It's a very illogical, unreasonable, unintelligent claim to make.

Additionally, notice how you failed to discuss anything I mentioned in my previous post, which consists of many detailed and data-centric topics.

You suffer from the same psychological condition Hebb did back in 1951:

Why do we not accept ESP as a psychological fact? Rhine has offered enough evidence to have convinced us on almost any other issue... Personally, I do not accept ESP for a moment, because it does not make sense. My external criteria, both of physics and of physiology, say that ESP is not a fact despite the behavioral evidence that has been reported. I cannot see what other basis my colleagues have for rejecting it... Rhine might still turn out to be right, improbable as I think that is, and my own rejection of his view is--in the literal sense--prejudice. (Hebb, 1951, p. 45)


So, I think I've demonstrated very thoroughly and clearly how you think--not based on any resource information posted on any Myspace profile you may have, but by your own words, mind you, and how you deflect from having to backup your claims by employing presumptuous thinking, generalizations, exaggerations, lies, excuses, irrelevant issues, and faulty logic. It's a complete wonder to my why I even bother debating someone who is very obviously not at par with me intellectually. Period. Have a good day.
Mike G.
Quantum Paranormal
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Re: Another example of a fraudulent "psychic"

Postby ciscop » 27 Sep 2009, 02:37

:lol: :lol:
do you really have links to pet psychics in your myspace?
wow !!! :lol: :lol:

And the most gullible award goes to... :?:


(oh, i found a link in your myspace to paranormal pets, is that it?.. pet psychics are way funnier..¨your dog has serious issues... he is telling me.. his mom was a bitch¨ :lol: :lol: .. ooh and i am reading the links on your website mickey!.. lots of interesting stuff).
For every person who reads this valuable book there are hundreds of naïve souls who would prefer to have their spines tingled by a sensational but worthless potboiler by some hack journalist of the paranormal. You who now read these sentences join a small but wiser minority. Martin Gaardner (Psychology of the Psychic)
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