Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Psychic detectives

There are many shows on television now that have psychic detectives that are amazing at solving the crime.  In reality are these people actually psychic or are they just "lucky" or give vague details like the book "Scientific Perspectives on Pseudoscience and the Paranormal" talks about and gets it right sometimes.  In the case with Capel the psychic Renier helped them find his body but as the book pointed out the information that Renier gave the police was very vague and some was even inaccurate.  It makes sense that most psychics will say the body will be found in the woods or water since this is the most common place people "dump" bodies.  Using psychics is fairly high in my opinion according to the book 35 percent of urban police departments and 19 percent of rural departments.  This is surprising since I would not think that people in the police department would believe in this and not only go on hard factual evidence.  I agree with this book that the factual advice that we receive from these people are highlighted and the false advice gets forgotten so quickly and we tend to make the predictions to "fit" the evidence instead of stepping back and accepting the coincidences. Brink conducted the experiment to prove that psychics are not of any use to the police by showing them photographs of objects and asked to describe the crime.  Another study that was conducted concluded that 12 psychics were on average able to identified 4 of the 21 key facts in the first crime and only 1.8 out of 33 facts in the second crime.  This again proves that psychics are not believable and cannot help.  I think that people turn to psychics because they want to believe that they did whatever they could to solve the crime and get closure to the family.  I know I have seen television shows where the parents will hire a psychic to find their loved one who is missing but I believe this is out of coping and grieving with the traumatic event.  I agree that people feed into a psychic and actually help these people pretend that they can talk to the dead.  Humans do not do well with the unknown and we would do anything to get answers including turning to a psychic.

"For those who believe no proof is necessary, for those who don't believe no proof is possible." Stewart chase


1 comment:

  1. The discussion of psychic detectives and the topic of "predictions" by Nostradamus go hand-in-hand, sharing a commonality: the ability to manipulate through the power of vagueness. No psychic claims to have the ability to 100% accuractly describe a scenario, they rely on vagueness and the over-hype successful guesses while unsuccessful ones are subtly pushed away.