Monday, February 12, 2007

Another Sham Psychic Comes To Australia

As if we need another, EoR is disappointed to see yet another conning psychic is touring Australia selling their schtick. This time it's Char Margolis ("Internationally acclaimed psychic" - but aren't they all?).

Psychic intuitive Char Margolis has amazed millions with her uncanny ability to contact departed spirits. Her books have sold 400,000 copies worldwide. Char also has her own TV show in the US and Holland and has even worked with the FBI solving missing persons cases.


Is she coming here to enlighten us? To bring spiritual peace and understanding? To heal the hurts of the world? No. She's on a tour selling her latest book. Her book spruiking shows are not free either.

Discover: why we don't have to fear death; nineteen questions that test your intuitive ability; how to tell if a spirit is trying to contact you; expert guidance on evaluating an intuitive or psychic message; methods to help you communicate with loved ones, guardian angels, and spirit guides; important facts about guarding against negative energies . . . and much more!


If you want to see her in action ("Is there a G or J person?") you can download a brief video of her reducing a grown man to tears simply through the art of coldreading. Or read a transcript of one of her shows:

MARGOLIS: All I need for people to say is hello. I want to hear their voice. And when I ask -- usually I work with initials or names, so if they could just say yes or no if it's someone close to them. But they need to be open-minded. I can't just answer what you want. So please be open-minded whoever calls in. And also, I don't always know if the person I'm picking up on is living or deceased because I communicate through thought.

KING: So you might say...

MARGOLIS: So I don't always know if the person I'm picking up is living or deceased. But sometimes I know. Sometimes I know.


It's always good to set the marks up right at the beginning so they don't think you're guessing and let them know you're so psychic that you even know you'll get things wrong before you do. And that you can't answer specific questions (because specific questions need specific answers - which she can't do). She then goes into the most appallingly bad coldreading act imaginable.

CALLER: Hi, Larry. Hi, Char.

KING: Hi.

CALLER: Hi.

MARGOLIS: Hi. Do you have somebody who is a J.?

CALLER: Yes.

MARGOLIS: A male J. Or female a J.?

CALLER: Actually, both.

MARGOLIS: Is there one that's spelled J.O?

CALLER: Yes.

MARGOLIS: Is that a male? A John or a Joe?

CALLER: It's a Joe.

MARGOLIS: Is he deceased?

CALLER: Yes.

MARGOLIS: Is this your father?

CALLER: No.

MARGOLIS: Who is he?

CALLER: He's my uncle.


Apart from "Hi" every single response from Ms Margolis so far has been a question. Apart from "Hi" every single response from the caller has been proffered information. EoR is not amazed that the caller is the far better psychic here.

MARGOLIS: I think his spirit's around you. And also is there a J. Female?

CALLER: Yes.


EoR is also not amazed that Ms Margolis's psychic "powers" enabled her to paranormally determine that her caller had said (six questions ago, so it's a good bet everyone's forgotten it) there was a female "J".

MARGOLIS: And in her name is there an N. in it?

CALLER: Yes.

MARGOLIS: Is it like J.E. or J.O. as well?

CALLER: Close.

MARGOLIS: Janice or Jane or Janet, or something?

CALLER: Well, it's Juanita.


This is no fun! Stop giving her the answers. She's in touch with your thoughts, or the departed, or fairies, or something! She knows the answers. At least, that's what she claims. And "Juanita" is only "close" to JO or JE in the sense that they both have second letters (the caller had earlier confirmed that the J guess was correct).

MARGOLIS: Juanita. Is this family to you, as well?

CALLER: Yes.

MARGOLIS: And who is that?

CALLER: That's my grandmother.

MARGOLIS: OK, I think her spirit's around you, as well. Were you thinking about changing where you live?

CALLER: Yes!


At least caller one is a heap more successful than her feeble attempts with caller two:

CALLER: Hello!

KING: Yes, speak up. Go ahead.

MARGOLIS: Could you please bet Red 5 for me? Just joking.

CALLER: Hello.

MARGOLIS: OK, Hello. OK, hi. Do you have somebody who is an A or M initial connected with you?

CALLER: No.

MARGOLIS: Anyone deceased or living? Think.


Sorry, Ms Margolis, you're the one who is supposed to be doing the thinking, and offering the amazing insights. Or don't you remember?

CALLER: No.

MARGOLIS: Okay, who is that that's [like] a M.A. Like a Margaret or Mary or Ann?

CALLER: No.

MARGOLIS: OK. It's a common name or a middle name like this?

CALLER: No.

MARGOLIS: OK. You know what? I'm sorry I'm not picking up on you.

CALLER: OK.

MARGOLIS: I'm not picking up on you, I'm really sorry.

KING: That happens, right? MARGOLIS: Yes, I guess it is. Or maybe she's not thinking.


Oh! How cutting! It's the caller's fault for "not thinking"! Ms Margolis has already made the pompous claim that she only needs the caller to say "Hello" (which this caller did) to get the paranormal connection through. What a liar. The random guesses, myriad questions from the psychic, and the information from the callers continues at length. One caller even offers Ms Margolis a hit for guessing "B" with the most desperate of connections:

MARGOLIS: Hi. OK, is there somebody who's an R. or B. with you?

CALLER: B. as in boy.


Or could it actually be "B" as in "baloney"? She also makes the "M" or "A" guess with her last caller. And with this reading that James Randi deconstructs.

Despite her extremely poor skills at carnival tricks, Ms Margolis considers it a privilege to provide 45 minute telephone readings for you for only $US600. When she's not busy doing paid-for-attendence promotions or numerous television shows.

2 comments:

  1. All this proves is that people are really, REALLY busy after they die. Too busy to give their names, just the first initial. Probably involved in a round robin croquet tournament with everyone who's ever lived.
    Also, they always say not to worry about the money so everything is free in heaven, too.
    Excellent! Thanks, Eeyore.

    ReplyDelete
  2. They're never too busy to tell the living things the living already know. Just too busy to tell them things they don't know (where Aunt Gladys hid the will, where that lost diamond ring really is, where Shawn Hornbeck was all that time...).

    ReplyDelete

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