The McKenzie 'Psychic' Challenge

Following my post 'Twisted mind comes to Limerick, RANT' I've decided to expand on why Dennis McKenzie is a fraud.

If I could perform the miracles claimed by Dennis, I would want to test my power for myself, while also proving it to the world.

Let's say, YOU wake up tomorrow with the ability to divine details of crimes just by holding objects and looking at maps. It would be exciting and cool, but surely you would immediately try to devise a foolproof test to show people you weren't a demented, cynical, manipulative, lying fraud (like McKenzie).

With a nod to the JREF challenge, the protocol for such a test should be simple enough to arrange.

Firstly, we must define this ability. Going by McKenzie's descriptions, he 'knows nothing' of the cases before he arrives. So you will know nothing.

What, nothing at all? So how does he know these cases even exist? Does he pick names out of the phone book and visit them at random to see if they're missing a child?

Well, no of course, he must read about them in the paper.

But, only their names and addresses? So, he doesn't read the article, just the headline 'Missing Child'?

Maybe, someone else gives him the names, I don't know how it works. The point is he has no 'special' knowledge of the cases.

So, he may have read everything available on the case? Then what exactly does he mean when he says 'he knows nothing about the case'?

CAN WE MOVE ON. Ok so you read the articles in the paper about the missing people. Then you get some kind of vision where a spirit guide reveals certain facts. These consist of:

1. Whether the person is alive or dead, and/or
2. Where the body is (by description), and/or
3. Random facts about the killers, and/or
4. Circumstances of murder/disappearance

These details will be clarified and more will emerge if you can touch an object owned by the missing person and talk to a relative.

Why do I need to talk to the relative? Do I some information? I thought you stressed I don't know anything about the case.

It's an emotional response or something. Just go with me. Anyway in the Soham case he claimed he knew straight away that the girls were dead, without meeting anyone or touching any objects. So here's my plan for the test.

1. An independent researcher gathers details on one hundred closed missing persons cases–in, say, Russia (all completely unknown to you).
2. In fifty of the cases the subjects were found dead, in fifty–alive.
3. He sources an object from each case.
4. You are allowed to see the first names and photographs of the subjects, and touch the related personal objects.

Since Dennis often works over the phone or at a distance (and I think through television?), this should be ample material for your new powers to provide you with leads on the cases.

And since all the cases will have been solved, it should be a simple task to check the information provided by the 'spirit guide'. We'll probably just ignore vague talk of 'the letter J' and 'a woman who looks younger,' your real power is to make a dead-or-alive determination.

A 'non-psychically gifted' person should achieve a 50% success rate.

Hmm, so what do you think Dennis would score? If he thinks he can do better than 50%, there's $1M waiting for him in the JREF Goldman Sachs account.

Jimmy Woulfe's article in the Examiner casually mentions McKenzie's 'chillingly accurate descriptions' of Ian Huntley and Maxine Carr. Too lazy to fact check? McKenzie's actual predictions were either vague, contradictory, or wrong–and those were the ones reported after the fact, the so-called 'hits.' Think of the perhaps dozens of suggestions he threw out that missed?

Meanwhile, Insp Gerry MacNamara of Roxboro says he may be calling on the sub-aqua team to wade about in Killaloe's murky waters, just on the mere say so of this mountebank.

Don't forget. if they actually find anything, it can only mean one thing: McKenzie has been in touch with the killers…

Psychic? Prove it or shut up!