The suggestion that ending the Challenge after 10 years supports any statement that psi does not exist or someone would have won the challenge, is absurd on many levels.
The procedures for the Challenge included several hurdles in favor of, and multiple “outs” for Randi and the JREF that any discerning individual capable of any kind of extraordinary human performance would think twice about (and here I’m not just referring to psychics and the like).
(via Posthuman Blues).
Good points are made about the level of proof Randi requires (1 in a million odds) and the difficultly in running enough iterations of an experiment to produce conclusive results within the perimeters of Randi’s experiments. However, one would think that psychic of the supposed caliber of, say,
Ari Uri Geller would have no trouble producing conclusive results.
What I suppose is being suggested is that while challenge screens out obvious charlatans who claim to have mind blowing supernatural powers, it doesn’t provide for more subtle forms of ESP.
I am, however, confused by reference to Ganzfeld telepathy research. These have been going since before I was born and are still not accepted by skeptics. Why would Randi be backing out of the challenge now, after all these years?
Also, here is an easier explanation for true believers as to why the Randi prize has not yet been won:
Why would someone with legitimate psychic powers “out” themselves for a mere one million dollars? Surely they must be able to make far more money in secret. Warren Buffet doesn’t reveal his secret investment strategies (hell, maybe he’s got psychic powers), why would anyone else?