John K Clark jonkc at bellsouth.net
Mon Sep 15 20:38:04 UTC 2008

Stefano Vaj On  Monday, September 15, 2008 Wrote:

> The prob is with statistical divergences that resist
> attempts to make them  predictable and repeatable
> within an adequate theoretical framework, thus
> preventing any real technical "appropriation".

That is quite simply untrue. Spectacularly untrue! It is the dream of
ALL experimenters to find something that existing science can not
explain, and it is the dream of theorists to find red meat to sink
their teeth into, it's the only reason people do science. If the good
people who run the LHC don't find a "statistical divergence" from
the known physics then a large number of them will need to be put
on a suicide watch.

When Roentgen discovered X rays there was no theoretical
framework to explain them, zero, zilch, nada, goose egg; and yet
the man was treated as a conquering hero by his fellow scientists.
Why? Because he used those X rays, whatever the hell they were,
to photograph the bones in his wife's hand. Unlike X rays Psi has
no bones.

Suppose the Extropian list existed in 1870 and we were having
this same conversation. What would be difference? Well, we'd be
using Morse Code and a telegraph key instead of the Internet
(with a lot less quoted material I'll bet). Also, some names have
gone in and out of faction in that time. Spiritualism became ESP
which became PSI, but other than that the substance of our
conversation would be virtually identical. The only change from
that day to this happened in the 1920's where instead of saying
that Harry Houdini was being mean in the way he debunked
charlatans they now say that The Amazing Randy is being mean
in the way he debunks charlatans. Fooling a scientist is easy,
fooling a professional magician is hard, damn hard.

This entire field is like a fly frozen in amber that hasn't moved
a nanometer in centuries; I don't expect anything about this to 
change anytime soon, nor does anyone else on this list.

I add that last part because it is the only explanation I can 
think of to explain why nobody has accepted the bet I first 
made on this subject and on this very list about a decade ago. 
Not one person has accepted it even with my very generous 10
to 1 odds. Not one person! I just wish all of you who preach the
wonders of Psi had accepted my bet; if you had I'd be a very 
rich man by now. 

 John K Clark

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