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March 10, 2014


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You had me going for a minute there, Rob!

Affirmations extraordinaires exigent des preuves extraordinaires, compagnon!!

C'est la vie! ;)

Actually, I’ve just tried to read that review, Rob. I haven’t laughed so much since my ex walked straight into a very full, and deep, drainage ditch in Epping Forrest and all I could see (for a second) was her hat left floating on the surface.


“As a child of the 1970's, I was favorably exposed to paranormal ideas such as Uri Geller, telekinesis and telepathy through Star Wars' Force, and eternal life through ritual drinking of magic "blood" far before I learned of the scientific method and sceptical criticism.”

So where has he ended up today?…

“McLuhan does a fair job of discussing some instances of fraud and trickery, but I found myself filling in missing pieces through Wikipedia and other web searches.”

Oh, my poor ribs!

Talk about lurching from one ridiculous extreme (or several) to another.

The thing that I find disappointing about skeptics like this is not that they’re ‘sceptical’ (or claim to be). No, I’d actually like to see more of that applied to some of the subjects we discuss here. The thing that really gets me is that their scepticism is, generally, so bloody incompetent.

I claim to possess a relic of French origin called "Camembert cheese", but I can not send it to you because it would destroy before arriving. Please believe me!

You could send Rob a tin of Confit du Carnard though, Renaud.

That wouldn't 'destroy' before arriving. And it might count as a 'permanent paranormal object'! That would be a great piece of evidence, and I could easily be present to help him 'test' it.


Unfortunately you can't control who reads your books Rob lol.
The expression 'pearls before swine' comes it mind.

Of the two one-star reviews the loooong one read like it had been written in the proverbial 'green ink', the other by someone who needed to get out more.

I can't help but think that this is a sock puppet reviewer. After making an appeal to authority by claiming to have "Master's Degree in Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine", he goes on to give a brief description of a past spiritual journey. This takes up a total of one out of 30 (!) paragraphs.
No where else in his diatribe does he mention any other significant personal experiences with spiritual medicine, which seems rather unnatural, coming from someone who supposedly has a "Doctorate" in alternative medicine.

Checking his other book reviews, the only topics that come up over the past year and a half concern thriller novels, a book about digital comic drawing, and a book hostile toward religion (which gets 5 stars). Something is wrong with this picture. Whatever it is, he's obviously putting on a false face of objectivity.

His review reads suspiciously like something written by "Forrests" (he had several usernames). You remember? Forrests was the troll that posted long-winded comments on Michael Prescott's blog, the Daily Grail, and other paranormal-friendly venues that allow public access for comments.
Come to think of it, we haven't heard from him in a while. Perhaps he's been progressively responding to treatment, so his group home must be allowing him access to the computer again.

Hmm, the return of Forrests. You might be right, Dawg. It does have that deranged feel.

Now I'm puzzled Rob - you don't like delusional but deranged is ok? Lol
(I agree though).

What is Confit du Carnard?

Haha! Je vous aurais bien envoyé mon camembert mais mon mari a tout bouffé...
Votre article est une belle entrée en matière de "skepticism" et j'ai bien ri. Ha si les gens voulaient bien se donner la peine d'évoluer...
Une très bonne semaine à vous!Keep up the great work.

Merci Beatrice!

It's posh (to us)tinned duck, Llewllyn. Preserved in it's own fat. Best purchased and eaten in the Dordogne, but needs must. I'm sure Rob wouldn't be that fussy, and I certainly wouldn't! ;)

"I often catch myself thinking that I understand the sceptic mentality, and could engage with it if only I had the right tools and arguments. But then something like this comes along that reminds me how I utterly out of my depth I am. It’s completely baffling, as though some demon had cast a spell on certain people that, on this matter, stops them recognising a logical chain of reasoning."

Like trying to plait live eels in a bucket?

We can always learn from feedback, even if the lesson is that not all sound is music.

you should read about the Italian region of Molise, there's an entire nation (myself included) that doesn't believe in its existence , and here's the proof via satellite image:

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  • ‘A brisk, bracing look at this continuing controversy, exhaustively researched .. a must-read for anyone with a serious interest in parapsychology and its critics.’
  • ‘‘Packed with accurate information while at the same time surprisingly engaging and fun to read.’
  • ‘‘This is one book that gives a completely objective review of skeptical debunking, and spells out in detail a clear pattern of chicanery which pervades a well-funded and organized campaign against all psi research.’

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  • ‘These disturbing phenomena seem to deny all our usual scientific ideas. How we should like to discredit them! Unfortunately the statistical evidence, at least for telepathy, is overwhelming. It is very difficult to rearrange one’s ideas so as to fit these new facts in.’ Alan Turing, computer scientist.

  • ‘I have noticed that if a small group of intelligent people, not supposed to be impressed by psychic research, get together and such matters are mentioned, and all feel that they are in safe and sane company, usually from a third to a half of them begin to relate exceptions. That is to say, each opens a little residual closet and takes out some incident which happened to them or to some member of their family, or to some friend whom they trust and which they think odd and extremely puzzling.’ Walter Prince, psychic researcher.

  • When a distinguished but elderly scientist states that something is possible he is almost certainly right. When he states that something is impossible, he is very probably wrong. Arthur C. Clarke

  • ‘Science seems to me to teach in the highest and strongest manner the great truth which is embodied in the Christian conception of entire surrender to the will of God. Sit down before fact as a little child, be prepared to give up every preconceived notion, follow humbly wherever and to whatever abysses nature leads, or you shall learn nothing.’ Thomas Henry Huxley

  • We can always immunize a theory against refutation. There are many such immunizing tactics; and if nothing better occurs to us, we can always deny the objectivity – or even the existence – of the refuting observation. Those intellectuals who are more interested in being right than in learning something interesting but unexpected are by no means rare exceptions. Karl Popper, on the defenders of materialism.

  • If we have learned one thing from the history of invention and discovery, it is that, in the long run - and often in the short one - the most daring prophecies seem laughably conservative. Arthur C. Clarke.

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