Sunday, July 18, 2010
You may remember Joe as the man who claimed to have recieved the words; "Peace, peace, peace the message is peace.", from the spirit of John Lennon in a 2007 American broadcast appropriately named: "The Spirit Of John Lennon". Since then, Joe or "The Man Who Sees Dead People" as he dubs himself in his book, has been busy back home in Liverpool continuing to build his career as a psychic medium. But recently it looks as though that career may have taken a turn for the worse.
On a recent episode of the Skeptics with a k podcast, Michael Marsh co-founder of The Merseyside Skeptics Society, discussed a phone call he had received from his local police department. The officer called to inform him of a recent complaint that Marsh's organization had made violent threats against psychic Joe.
Marsh explained to the officer the relationship between Joe and The MSS as well as his own past interactions with Joe and assured him that neither Marsh himself nor his organization would ever encourage or tolerate violence or threats of violence against anyone. Satisfied with Marsh's explanation the officer assured him that it seemed no wrong doing had occurred.
What would have provoked the UK psychic to make an unwarranted allegation against a set of his critics? Perhaps it has something to do with his recent appearance on the UK's paranormal investigation show, "Derren Brown investigates", hosted by Mentalist, Magician, Artist and Skeptic Derren Brown.
During the show Joe allowed Derren to film and interview him while he performed psychic readings for various subjects. At first things seemed to go well for Joe as he was able to score a number of seemingly impressive hits during his first reading. It would later turn out that this particular woman actually lived next door to Joe's sister not merely on the same street as Joe admits in a statement on his web page released after the fact .
Joe appeared both confident in his abilities and pleased with the conditions of the show as they moved on to his next planned event. But all of that would change as Derren began to remove elements of control from Joe's hands. Leading to amongst other things, Joe's refusal to participate in a previously-agreed-to blind test meant to prevent him from employing techniques such as cold reading. Joe explained it would be impossible for him to conduct such a reading because as a clairaudience, he required verbal interaction with an individual to conduct a successful reading. A claim which is made even more laughable once you've been greeted by the sizable add on Joe's homepage which supplies you with a number to text for a psychic reading.
But the ultimate turning point in the show, as well as Joe's attitude, came when he was presented with a subject which Derren and his producers had chosen from a list of their own applicants rather than the list of individuals given to them by Joe's management, as had been the case for the first and most successful of Joe's readings on the show. After abruptly ending his reading of this woman, declaring that her mind had been corrupted by merely meeting "known skeptic" Derren Brown. Joe began to accuse Derren of lying to him about having met the woman before her reading, even though Derren had admitted to doing so directly to Joe before the reading and on camera.
A statement released on Joe's web page about his appearance on the show includes the following about this particular reading:
"You may have watched my recent appearance on “Derren Brown – Investigates” on Monday 10th May 2010. If you managed to catch it, you will have noted ….all was not as it seems as the well know sceptic, himself might say.
For example, the production company advertised for a list of readers to use in the documentary. Ultimately they therefore had a free reign as to who they chose for me to read for. I was not informed who I would be reading for, where I was going or when I was reading."
That's right, "Psychic medium" Joe Power says it was unfair of Derren and his producers to ask him to "read" someone without first telling him who they were, where they lived, when the reading would take place, and then allowing him to decide weather or not he actually wanted to read them in the first place. Kind of makes you wonder if Joe Understands the difference between being psychic and running a background check on someone.
All in all I'm enjoying watching the image Joe's worked so hard to create unravel in such a public way and can only hope his spiral back into obscurity where he belongs continues to be as public and as humiliating as possible so that no ever wastes their money on Joe's lame parlor tricks again.
Links and Additional Content
First of all go visit the Merseyside Skeptics Society page and check out the Skeptics With a K and Inkredulous podcasts. Check out they're blog as well to read about Marsh's first encounter with Joe, SPOILER ALERT: someone gets called a pedophile and it isn't Joe... and also his account of the most recent accusations of threats of violence.
Visit Derren's page for more info on Derren and his show and of course Watch Joe fail for yourself on Derren Brown Investigates in the video below.
Posted by YouTube User: SkepticaTV
Image Credit: Joe Power, The Merseyside Skeptics Society, and Derren Brown
Video posted by Youtube user: SkepticaTV