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Randi Goes ‘Round the Bem

James Randi has announced his 2012 Pigasus awards, and in the scientist category has given it to Daryl Bem, for his experiments exploring the case for a precognitive ability in humans. Yes that’s right, Randi frowns upon people doing science. Fail:

The winner of the Pigasus Prize in the scientist category is Daryl Bem, for his shoddy research that has been discredited on many accounts by prominent critics, such as Drs Richard Wiseman, Steven Novella and Chris French. Such examination shows very strange methods used by Bem to prove his case, which ends up unproven – though the popular media, of course, have chosen to embrace it.

Do Drs Wiseman, Novella and French really believe that Daryl Bem should be the winner of an award that Randi says he bestows upon “the most deserving charlatans, swindlers, psychics, pseudo-scientists, and faith healers”? And do they believe that Bem’s research employed “very strange methods” and that it has now been “discredited on many accounts” [my emphasis]?

  1. Tombstones
    According to Randi, Bem is one of the “fakers that we find to be so harmful to society.” Randi and PZ Myers will go down in history as enemies of free thought and expression.

    Randi is an interesting psychological case – with his long white beard, and always appearing in his website imagery as a kind of god-like Big Brother figure. Here’s the good news – when he’s gone, there’s no one to replace him that is so pathologically bent on the persecution of unorthodoxy. Progress is marked in tombstones.

    John Topp

    1. At this point he is shooting
      At this point he is shooting himself in the foot more effectively than the detractors ever can. Ever since his tirade on the implications of the double slit experiment it is obvious he has no compunctions about making a fool of himself in public on scientific questions. He has a singular disinterest in getting to the bottom of anything which is why I suspect he is an agent for quashing expansion of consciousness in the general population. From such a population the State has trouble concealing itself. Figuring out ESP is tantamount to seeing through your masters as well.

  2. The Newt Gingrich of Skepticism
    Skepticism is supposed to be an exercise in critical thinking divested of beliefs, emotionality, or biases. Yet I continue to see (many) skeptics defending such clearly emotional (and non-critical) acts like these by Randi as a form educational “showmanship,” or some such thing. You can’t have it both ways. He does about as much good for the skeptical cause at this point as Newt Gingrich does for the Republican Party.

  3. Shoddy research
    If Randi was half as honest (and brave) as he claims to be, he would have awarded Antonio Ereditato instead, for the shoddy research that had many people –including prominent figures in politics– question the sacrosancty of Relativity; if you think about it, a far more pernicious aggravation.

    But fear of change is partly what drives his crusade. And picking on PSI is their oldest tradition 😉

    1. Weird Science
      [quote=red pill junkie]Antonio Ereditato[/quote]

      Yeah, I was about to suggest the CERN boffins who proved Einstein wrong with faster-than-light particles… and then reluctantly admitted a week later they didn’t plug a cable in correctly.

      I know who wins the PIG (Petty Ignorant Guy) award.

  4. from the Artful-Prespiration-Dept
    maybe this should inspire someone to pull a colbert, create an uberskeptic persona and have their own awards, hmm the Diamond maybe (for rectal coal) and make videos

    like these have done for the westboro church

  5. Rumson Randi
    Has anyone ever read the Million Dollar Challenge contract? No lawyer would ever allow their client to sign a contract like that, no matter how incompetent they are.

  6. randi does not want science
    randi does not want science to engage in psi research, because by allowing science to investigate, “skeptics” believe it in some small way validates psi claims. much better, they think, to demean , insult and belittle those who are curious enough to do so. this is why csicop , and all skeptics, do not conduct scientific research. they are not scientists, they are agents of social control.

    1. I always suspected Randi to
      I always suspected Randi to be part of a background cabal tasked to quash the human awareness movement, and after his recent rant about eugenics I am more convinced than ever. His absurd denials of 9/11 insider evidence is an obvious dodge. He represents an elite establishment, and he rushes in to protect their “interests” at every opportunity. I would like to know about all of his social and intellectual connections and who may be backing him in stealth mode. He is certainly cracked enough to be corruptible.

      1. I applied for this and got attacked
        I wrote to this foundation because I could easily prove per-cognition. Which I think is very common. In response I was violently attacked in my home by a hired thug who screamed “YOU CAN’T SEE” (the future). In reality I don’t see it I just am aware of it.
        I also was harassed by a gang connected to an obese woman who stole my identity several years ago.
        I later predicted the ruination of Christchurch NZ by a week, and was physically destroying my attackers apartment at the same moment as the earthquake.

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