Monday, March 28, 2011

Sensing Morons

During a show at the Regent Theatre in Palmerston North last month, British clairvoyant Lisa Williams gave the names of two men she claimed shot the dairy farmer.

Police said they were aware of the names and were checking them against their suspect list.

Williams claimed to be "channelling" Guy - speaking to him from beyond the grave - and was told his killers' first names were Mark and Joey.
Williams has names, I have pictures:

Here are Mark and Joey. They were the members of the British National Party who caused a fuss when they were interviewed for Newsbeat, the news programme on the BBC yoof channel. They claimed England footballer Ashley Cole was not really British - although it was obvious he must be British, since he had a wife called Cheryl. As it turned out, Mark and Joey were not just members but a couple of Obergruppenf├╝hrers. Thank you officer, I am glad to have helped you with your enquiries.

Of course, they may not be responsible, they may never have visited New Zealand and other Marks and Joeys should be eliminated from your enquiries. Perhaps you could ask Ms Williams to ask Guy to be a bit more specific; I sometimes wonder why the denizens of the spirit world are so vague about everything. Or perhaps you could charge her with wasting Police time. That would be fun.

Of course, the Police have only themselves to blame for this sort of nonsense. It was they who decided to interview the stars of Sensing Murder:
Sensing Murder producers say psychic Deb Webber had named a person involved in the Kaye Stewart inquiry. Her revelation "could go down in New Zealand policing history".

But Detective Senior Sergeant Ross Levy said police who interviewed Webber and fellow psychic Kelvin Cruickshank had already discounted that person, and other publicly unknown information revealed by the pair had failed to produce any fresh leads.
It didn't go down in New Zealand policing history, did it? It made the Police look silly and it gave the charlatans who made this idiotic programme another flag to wave. Why would the Police bother with these clowns? The psychics of Sensing Murder may have sensed many murders but they did not solve one. This is unsurprising: a psychic has never solved a murder. What's more, a half century of worldwide scientific reasearch into psychic phenomena has failed to produce any evidence that such phenomena exist. If the Police just told these people to plod off they would have more time for policing.

As a matter of fact, it is not just the police who are to blame. We can also blame Nigel Latta, which in itself is a fun past-time for all the family:
Keen to silence the sceptics once and for all, Sensing Murder: Insight opens the entire filming process up for scrutiny. Nigel Latta works actively with the New Zealand Police profiling criminals. He is an expert in detecting deception - if anyone can spot a cheat or a fraud, Latta can. He is invited to observe an entire psychic read and all the behind-the-scenes action, as Australian psychic Deb Webber tunes into a particularly difficult test case where it was not even certain that the victim was actually murdered. Latta started the day a complete sceptic… but after watching Webber at work, he was unable to offer a rational explanation for how she does what she does
That is because there is no rational explanation. What Deb does is not a matter of reason. And Nige is in no special position to test her claims: he is a psychologist and, more importantly, a television personality. An opthalmologist would be no better nor worse at explaining what Deb does. Of course, Nige might have been able to offer some insight on the delusional psychosis of which Deb must be suffering if she sincerely believes she has magic powers. But that wouldn't be part of his brief. His brief is to be a television expert, which means he gives authority to the claims made by the people who pay him money.

Incidentally, you might not have noticed, but those hotlinks in the Throng article lead not to useful links but to an advertisement for psychic services: tacky, tacky, tacky; and usually a sign, one that says the publisher is desperate for advertisers and will soon go out of business.

Anyway, back to Nige, the psychologist; the psychologist who uses words like 'mental' to describe teenagers. Confused? You won't be once you have read a few choice words by Chris on Bipolar Bear. You might also care to read the comments, which flooded in after the Herald picked up the story. I am particularly taken with this comment:
mate – it’s people like you who complain about this type of stuff that’s steering this place to where it’s headed.


Stephen Stratford said...

"And Nige is in no special position to test her claims: he is a psychologist and, more importantly, a television personality."

Yes. The only person qualified to test her claims is a magician. Magicians know all the psychics' tricks and can even perform them too. The stellar example was James Randi:

Anonymous said...

The only thing moronic is this article