Long Island Medium is a television program on The (so-called) Learning Channel featuring Theresa Caputo doing readings as a psychic medium in the tradition of Sylvia Browne, James Van Praagh, John Edward, and thousands of other men and women claiming to get messages from dead people. What are the odds that Caputo is not deluded or a fraud? I’d say they’re about the same as those for Gordon Smith or Allison DuBpois or Char Margolis or Noreen Renier or Sylvia Browne or Rosemary Althea or Lynn Ann Maker or Greta Alexander or Phil Jordan or James Van Praagh or John Edward or George Anderson or Dorothy Allison.
Theresa Caputo is just one of many unsinkable rubber duckies, as James Randi calls them. No matter how many of these characters skeptics expose, dozens more will pop up to replace or join them. Why? Not because they really get messages from the dead or have special powers, but because people want to believe in them, people are easily deceived, and most people don’t understand subjective validation and how it works.
According to this theory John Travolta died in 1991 and was replaced by a look-alike, German singer Roy Black.
When I was a kid, cryptozoology books repeatedly advocated the existence of creatures such as Bigfoot and the Loch Ness monster using the same dramatic stories. At first, I was swayed by these stories, but eventually I got bored with them. Something was missing. Stories only got me so far; I really wanted a coherent argument with structure and details. I did not find one in the cryptozoology books …
Dr. Novella is a Neurologist at the Yale University School of Medicine, as well as the president of the New England Skeptical Society. He recently published an article on NeuroLogica about the pseudoscience that ghost hunting is and especially the use of the infamous ‘Ghost Box’ or ‘Frank’s Box’.
What does Dr. Novella think about this contraption? Pareidolia.
There’s never been an acupuncture study in China with a negative result. What are the odds? About the same as a fair coin flip coming up tails 99 times in a row …
Read all about it: acupuncture – The Skeptic’s Dictionary.
There have been an “unprecedented” number of UFO sightings reported in the North Island over the past two months, UFO watchers say.
And aliens may even have visited Northland in the past five weeks, with one man reporting seeing a UFO land in the region, Suzanne Hansen, director from Ufocus NZ research network said.
Our brains balk at the thought of four-dimensional hypercubes, quantum mechanics or an infinite universe, and understandably so. But our gray matter is generally adept at processing sensory data from the mundane objects and experiences of daily life. However, there are a few glaring exceptions.
Here are five common things that unexpectedly throw our brains for a loop, revealing some of the bizarre quirks in their structure and function that usually manage to slip under the radar.
Reiki Is Nonsense
Stephen Barrett, M.D.
Reiki is one of several nonsensical methods commonly referred to as “energy healing.” These methods are based on the idea that the body is surrounded or permeated by an energy field that is not measurable by ordinary scientific instrumentation. The alleged force, said to support life, is known as ki in Japan, as chi or qi in China, and as prana in India. Reiki practitioners claim to facilitate healing by strengthening or “balancing” it.
Reiki has no substantiated health value and lacks a scientifically plausible rationale. Science-based healthcare settings should not tolerate its use, and scarce government research dollars should not be used to study it further.
Read more – Reiki Is Nonsense.
Also see The Skeptic’s Dictionary: reiki
“This is the central tragedy of conspiracy thinking—that it diverts people’s energies and attentions away from solving real problems in the real world, and instead motivates them to solve fake problems endemic to the fantasy world in which conspiracy theorists dwell.” – EXACTLY
Originally posted on Thrive Debunked:
Although the main objective of Thrive is informational—to disseminate conspiracy theories and promote right-wing libertarian political ideology—it cannot be ignored that Thrive’s makers and a lot of its supporters say they want to take action. On this very blog Foster Gamble, creator of Thrive, has dismissed the utility of discussing the factual errors and distortions in his film, in favor of “creating solutions.” Unfortunately, the “solutions” that Thrive fans say they want are aimed overwhelmingly at exposing and combating the various conspiracy theories that the film asserts exist. This is the central tragedy of conspiracy thinking—that it diverts people’s energies and attentions away from solving real problems in the real world, and instead motivates them to solve fake problems endemic to the fantasy world in which conspiracy theorists dwell.
This article will discuss the phenomena of what I call “conspiracy activism.” Thrive is not the first conspiracy movie to spark an activist response. Mr. Gamble’s film exists in the context of a conspiracist underground that has, in recent years, been rapidly transformed by the Internet, and is continuing to evolve quickly. I wrote about this in an article over at my other blog, which I also publicized on this one. You can consider this article to be sort of a companion piece to that one.
The days of grainy 8 mm films of UFOs, Bigfoot and lake monsters are long gone. As video editing software has become — and continues to become — more advanced and user-friendly, high-quality hoax videos are ever-easier to make. Upload those videos to the Internet and they’ll zip around the world, thanks in part to a public audience that is still willing to set aside logic when it comes to paranormal activity.
June 16, 2012 UPDATE: The group mentioned in this post (Chemtrail Geoengineering Lawsuit) now has a web page located at http://chemtrailgeoengineeringlawsuit.webs.com/
If you wish to discuss this issue, i suggest one of my favorite discussion forums: Metabunk.org
The Chemtrail Geoengineering Lawsuit over on facebook is a group «for those interested in filing a lawsuit for Geoengineering and Chemtrails that have evidence of Chemtrail toxins such as Barium, Aluminum, Strontium and other toxins in their blood or hair, urine, soil [or] rain water.»
I love it when people waste their time chasing phantoms down dead end streets. Anyway …
May 5, 2012 they boasted of having “1700 potential plaintiffs” in their complaint (and “growing VERY fast”), and they asked people to send money to their California attorney.
May 16, 2012 update: With 1,823 members of this group, this is the wall post:
Seriously ChemTrailers? 1,823 people in your group and not one dime has been given to your cause? We’re talking global catastrophe, the end of humanity as we know it! You need to participate – vinegar spraying is cheap, you must cough up some real money and expose this world-wide conspiracy!!!!
Then this just 5 hours ago:
I. Am. Crushed.
- ChemTrail Discussion
- Debunked: ChemTrails and ChemClouds (Video)
- Kill ChemTrails With Vinegar!!!!! (Video) (Spoof)
Mary Occhino is a rising psychic star in the national spotlight. In the last few years she has written three books, hosted a radio show on which she gave medical readings, and had a reality television show called Mary Knows Best on the Syfy cable network. The show spotlighted Occhino raising “a colorful Long Island Italian-American family” and living everyday life with a psychic ability.
Over the years, Occhino has claimed to assist in missing persons cases, talk to the dead, and peer into the futures of celebrity lives. This article delves into Occhino’s predictions and activities, revealing that while Occhino is short on claims, her claims are short on independent proof. The independent evidence shows that when it comes to predictions, Occhino doesn’t know best.
Read More: CSI | Psychic Mary Occhino Doesn’t Know Best.
James Randi, a.k.a. The Amazing Randi, magician and author of numerous works skeptical of paranormal, supernatural, and pseudoscientific claims has for about ten years offered “a one-million-dollar prize to anyone who can show, under proper observing conditions, evidence of any paranormal, supernatural, or occult power.” His rules were little more than what any reasonable scientist would require. If you are a mental spoon bender, you couldn’t use your own spoons. If you claimed to see auras, you’d have to do so under controlled conditions. If you claimed to be able to do remote viewing, you wouldn’t be given credit for coming close in some vague way. If you were going to demonstrate dowsing powers, you would have to be prepared to be tested under controlled conditions. If you were going to do psychic surgery or experience the stigmata, you would have to do so with cameras watching your every move.
Here is a video clip of Randi exposing Geller and Popoff from NOVA’s “Secrets of the Psychics”:
For your entertainment pleasure, i introduce to you the following website. There is some great stuff here. Grab some popcorn and enjoy the show.
Chemtrail spraying operations are intended for multiple purposes including low level population reduction, mind control and to foster weakness and apathy among the general population in anticipation of the New World Order takeover agenda.
Kill chemtrails with vinegar! – Use White vinergar in spray bottle to kill the effects of Barium, and the trails in the sky will disappear. You need to wait about 10 minutes before they start to break up.
Show Time: Poisonous Chemtrails.
- ChemTrail Discussion
- Debunked: ChemTrails and ChemClouds (Video)
- Kill ChemTrails With Vinegar!!!!! (Video) (Spoof)
Just a couple of passing thoughts on the issue of ChemTrails – some of these people are nuts.
Over at Chemtrail Geoengineering Lawsuit II ~Social Network~ on Facebook, i came across this wall post. This nut job spells out how he would handle a congress person not agreeing with his ideas on the issue of geoengineering:
The screen shot was taken 5/16/12 at 8:08 PM ET
Stroll on over to What in the World Are They Spraying? and you find this post:
This screen shot was taken 5/16/12 at 8:19 PM ET
Then i took a look at the web page for “Why in the World are They Spraying?”, where this “documentary” about “the many agendas associated with chemtrail/geoengineering programs” is seeking investors. I looked through their information and found this gem:
Let me get this straight, they’re seeking “a hundred-or-so” donors to give an amount equal to what one would pay for 60 days of cable service. I pay about $100/month for cable, so 2 months (60 days) of cable service would be $200. If they can find a hundred people to give them $200 each, they would rake in $20,000. Then they promise to keep what ever amount they don’t use out of the $20,000 because they “cannot offer an investment for profit.”
If somebody were to give you $20,000, how much would YOU have to spend to sit in front of your laptop editing on your favorite movie program? All i would need is some cash for pizza, so I’ll bet i can do it for less than $1,000.
If you believe in ChemTrails i suggest you send them A LOT of your hard earned cash … NOW … and let me know how it goes.
That is all for now,
Mason I. Bilderberg
|“There are many strange UFO’s and Alien beings in ancient art but none as clear as this one.”
“You see in the sky an undoubtedly space craft shining down on Christ” … “a disk shaped object … (shining) beams of light down on John the Baptist and Jesus.”
Go to the menu at the top of the page and learn the truth!
Many of us know a 9/11 “truther” but, if you’re like me, you enjoy reality too much to spend your time, exhausting your patience, entertaining wacky theories. So, here is one, comprehensive link with all the debunking information you could possibly ask for!!!: Resources for debunking 9/11 Conspiracy Theories.
… most psychologists think abductions are lucid dreams or hallucinations, triggered by an awareness of other people’s similar experiences.
Everyone’s aware that Thomas Edison had a number of patents, ranging from the practical to the bizarre. One of his most bizarre experiments was a device he was tinkering with that could allow him to communicate with the dead. The infamous Ghost Machine.
Read More and discuss: Ghost Box: Pareidolia Through White Noise | Ghost Theory.
An ancient Mayan skull stolen from Tibet by Nazis – said to have magical powers to enable humanity to survive the December 2012 apocalypse – has been dropped by a lab assistant in eastern Germany, chipping its chin.
What if this skull is key to us surviving the Mayan 2012 end-of-the-world prophecy? Huh? We may all be doomed because of this! Argh!
I’m trying to remain calm and not panic. *sigh*
Related: Oldest Mayan calendar unearthed…
As a total non-believer in ChemTrails, i can’t think of any better way for the ChemTrail believers to destroy their cause than to put it before a court of law. I will pay to be in that courtroom.
How much do you want to bet this lawsuit never makes it to court? It can’t. There are way too many people making way too much money selling the ChemTrail hoax – they can’t afford to have this issue heard and decided in a court of law. It’s no different than psychics refusing to be tested in a laboratory environment, they can’t afford to be put to a real test of evidence.
So please, if you believe in ChemTrails, this is your time to put your evidence to the test. Please join the lawsuit.
Just what is this mysterious “pulsating winged being” caught on camera?
Is it an angel, demon, alien, hoax, or something else?
You’ve got to see this astonishing video and decide for yourself …
More video of the: ‘Pulsating winged being’ caught on video
Update: 5/19/12: ‘Angel’ Caught on Video? Bad CGI More Likely
Steven Hawking once threw a party for time travellers, he made the announcement public so that it could be found by any future historians who might live in a world when technology allows travel back in time. No one showed up.
Possibly they got the date wrong.
Keep Reading: Alien Visitors, Are “They” US? | Ghost Theory.
Although most of us haven’t had the exhilarating and life-affirming experience of nearly dying, a lucky few have returned from being “living challenged” to report their near-death experiences (NDE). An intriguing study (AWAreness during REsuscitation, or AWARE) to test this phenomenon is taking place at a number of medical centers throughout the United States, Europe, and Canada (and, if you buy into the Drake Equation, on other planets in the universe as well). One of the most amazing characteristics of the AWARE study is its catchy acronym from such a clumsy phrase. If nothing else, at the end of the day, these researchers should get an honorable mention for creativity from the Journal of Near-Death Acronyms (JNDA).
The main purpose of this research is to discover if there is any truth to the concept of an NDE.
Continue reading: CSI | Return of the Living Dead: The Final Chapter.
Comedy hour! Read, laugh, enjoy!
In a nutshell: Therapeutic touch is a kind of energy medicine. Those who do therapeutic touch wave their hands over a patient’s body to fix their energy. The science says there is no such energy.
Keep reading: therapeutic touch.
More wacky crap from the New Age people! Try not to laugh.
Thought field therapy (TFT) is a New Age psychotherapy dressed up in the garb of traditional Chinese medicine.
TFT allegedly “gives immediate relief for post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD ), addictions, phobias, fears, and anxieties by directly treating the blockage in the energy flow created by a disturbing thought pattern. It virtually eliminates any negative feeling previously associated with a thought.”
Keep reading. You’ll love this nonsense: thought field therapy – The Skeptic’s Dictionary – Skepdic.com.
Researchers in Spain have found that at least some of the individuals claiming to see the so-called aura of people actually have the neuropsychological phenomenon known as “synesthesia” (specifically, “emotional synesthesia”). This might be a scientific explanation of their alleged ability.
Personally, i think auras are complete bulls**t. I like what the Skeptic’s dictionary has to say on auras:
In the New Age, even the lowly amoeba has an aura, as does the mosquito and every lump of goat dung.
Under ordinary circumstances, auras are only visible to certain people with special psychic power. However, with a little bit of training, or with a special set of Aura Goggles with “pinacyanole bromide” filters (available at your local New Age Head Shop), anyone can see auras.
On the other hand, you may also see auras if you have a migraine, a certain form of epilepsy, a visual system disorder or a brain disorder.
Penn & Teller – 9/11 Conspiracy Theories
Would you believe there are still people who think 9/11 was a controlled demolition, and are still pushing their case 11 years later?
I love doom and gloomers – always wrong, always entertaining.
A stream of highly charged particles from the sun is headed straight toward Earth, threatening to plunge cities around the world into darkness and bring the global economy screeching to a halt.
I don’t buy this at all. If this person really has psychic abilities, she could earn herself $1,000,000.00 by taking the James Randi One Million Dollar Paranormal Challenge.
Last year, a California court convicted a swindler of murder in a case that was solved partly, the lead police investigator said, with the help of remote viewing …
Thrive was supposed to be the latest and greatest conspiracy movie. At least this is what the creators had hoped. Fortunately for the sane, sites like Thrive Debunked has thoroughly asked all the right questions and provided all the correct answers. Consequently, the movie Thrive sank like a rock in the ocean. Definitely worth the read.
Originally posted on Thrive Debunked:
Foster Gamble, the man behind the Thrive documentary, has responded to the open letter I addressed to him last week as well as other statements I’ve made on this blog. He responded in the form of a comment to the blog. I’m going to reproduce the text of Mr. Gamble’s statement in its entirety here in this article. Then, at the end, I will offer my own remarks in response.
Note: some commenters have taken Mr. Gamble to task by putting many of his thoughts in all caps, as if he is shouting. I don’t see it that way. Just how the blog comment system works on WordPress, there was really no other way for him to set off his text from words of mine that he was responding to.
Watch the video and find out why this moron is making such outrageous claims about water. Unbelievable.
Complete, total a$$hole.
Here is this clown pitching these filters. Does this filter company know about this?
Believers in psychic abilities might see this as validating the legitimacy of psychics. I see it as Scotland Yard doing a legal CYA (Cover Your Ass). How many times have you heard defense lawyers ask the question “Did the police do a full investigation and consider all the evidence?”
Nowadays, in our litigious society, even the truly wacky, unproven and discredited among us must get due consideration. It’s a shame. How much time will be wasted on this nonsense in lieu of chasing down real leads?
The calls, initially dismissed due to their unusual content, will be passed to Scotland Yard as part of ongoing investigations.
It is understood around 100 phone calls were made to the phone hotline soon after Madeleine was reported missing from those claiming supernatural knowledge of her whereabouts.
I can’t believe it! A fake psychic? Never!
A San Jose psychic now sees five years in prison in her future after admitting to running a “Sweetheart Scam” that nearly cost an elderly man his life savings while also conning another woman who paid her to exorcise a loved one’s spirit.
ANOTHER psychic fraud. Imagine THAT!
[The psychic] told her that she was under a “curse and a black cloud,” and that her daughter would hang herself within a week if she didn’t pay … $16,000 to lift the curse.
The fact is, if you’re certain that our planet is hosting alien visitors, the way to gain acceptance for your point of view is to prove it, not insist that the problem lies with third parties. The blame game is a cop-out.
Read More: Seth Shostak: The UFO Bestiary.
Wow. Just wow.