Interview with James Randi : “Homeopathy: trickery or treatment?” Yesterday 22nd Feb

Homeopathy_Trickery_Or_Treatment_-_Newstalk_Radio_PlayerIn the context of the question Homeopathy: trickery or treatment? – you know the right answer, or at least I do hope that you do, and so what is of more interest to us here is that Jonathan McCrea speaks to the world’s most famous skeptic, James Randi who is now 85, on his Irish NewsTalk radio show.

(What now follows is a quick summary – if you prefer, just skip all that and click the link below to listen to the interview itself)

Randi talks about his childhood, and being thrown out of Sunday school for asking too many questions (yea).

The interviewer then move on tho ask him about what it means to be a skeptic and also ask him about his expose of Peter Popoff, the famous evangelist who was using tricks to con people into thinking God was doing miracles. They even play some clips.

They then move on to talk about fake psychics. One interesting question that Mr McCrea asks is, that often people ring his show after a segment like this and say, but Psychic X knew all about my Granny (or similar), and then asks how this could be. James Randi explains that often they do actually know. For example, when people give their phone number, that can then be used to get a lot of information about them.

They then move on the the topic for the show – Homeopathy. Apparently it is very popular in Ireland. Randi explains that it has been extensively tested over the years and demonstrated that it does not work when using proper double-blind controls. In fact Randi even did it on the BBC where he put $1 million on the line if it could be proven to actually work. [BBC Horizon 2002]

Randi is also asked, “After decades of campaigning, people still buy tickets and to see Psychics, still buy into Homeopathy and still flock to see faith healers, do you think it is a lost cause?”. He replies, “Well I certainly give a lot of heavy sighs and I talk to a lot of people in all different parts of the world. I could get very discouraged except I also get a lot of letters from people who explain ‘Mr Randi, you have made a great difference to my life, I now look at these things differently’ and don’t buy into this nonsense anymore'”

You can listen to it all here, in total it is a 13:24 sized segment, so it just right to listen to.

Oh, and if you don’t know what this Peter Popoff scam is all about, then you can watch this to see … in fact this is the video in which Randi talks about exposing Uri Geller and Peter Popoff, and shows you how the tricks are actually done.

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