Psychic Joe Power And The Two Man Mob – Revisited


Joe Power - psychic or not? You decide.

Joe Power - psychic or not? You decide

In the wake of Derren Brown’s stinging exposé on ‘Psychic’ Joe Power, I thought it worth sharing with the world a conversation I had with Joe back in June 2009, when the MSS was still young, and I was but a naive, innocent skeptic with a dream, and an application form for Randi’s $1million Challenge…

Cool drizzle fell onto the grey Saturday streets of Liverpool, a light breeze tumble-weeded a sweet wrapper down the road in a clichéd fashion, and I was becoming increasingly aware that this would be the strangest conversation of my life.  And I didn’t need psychic powers for that.  For I was in the company of ‘Psychic’ Joe Power, fresh from his latest in-store book-signing (signed copies of which, I add, are still on the shelves of Waterstones – supply quite exceeded demand it seems), and things were getting weird.

“The thing about you sceptics,” he said, standing on the step of a plus-size lingerie shop to raise himself to my eye-level, “is that you sit there, festering in front of your computers at 3am, thinking up ways to get at people.  What if I were to sit in front of your house and tell people you’re a paedophile?”

“Well,” I say, “that’s for you to decide to do if you want to but it’s not really the same thing – I’m raising questions over what you do and the service you claim to provide; insinuating I was a paedophile would be just a personal attack, and wildly baseless.  It’s not really the same thing.  At all.”

“Oh I think they’re very similar,” he answers, “because you’re there festering, at 3am, plotting to get at me, in the same way that paedophiles fester and plot to interfere with children – you both have to be sick in the head to do what you do.”

With Herculean effort to suspend my natural what-the-fuck? reaction, and with a curt politeness that in retrospect now seems other-worldly, I manage a swift retort:  ”Sorry, can I just clarify – are you comparing sceptics to paedophiles?  Could you explain that?  I mean, are you saying that paedophiles also ask questions of you, or what exactly?”

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Joe:  ”I think most sceptics probably are paedophiles. I mean you’re sat around at 3am, plotting, aren’t you?  Do you deny that?”

An-incredulous-Marsh: “Do I deny what?  That I ask questions?  That I’m sometimes awake at 3am?  Or that I am a paedophile?  Could you please be clear what you’re asking me, Joe?”

It’s not often that you’re 5 minutes into a conversation with someone you’ve never met before and they’ve already played the paedophile card.  I had a feeling it was going to be one of those days.

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  1. #1 by eyetie on May 11, 2010 - 11:19

    Review of Joe Power’s London show from a few weeks ago: http://bit.ly/9OlgyQ

  2. #2 by Andy Brice on May 12, 2010 - 00:25

    What a charmer Joe is. Especially when he spitefully dropped in a mention of an affair during Derren Brown’s cold reading on his recent TV expose.

  3. #3 by Iason Ouabache on May 12, 2010 - 17:45

    This is exactly why I suck at being a skeptic activist. I would not have been able to keep my temper if a gasbag like him called me a pedophile. Great job of keeping your cool.

  4. #4 by Kelly on May 13, 2010 - 17:04

    Finally watched the show. What an odious, arrogant, liar Mr Power is.

  5. #5 by Derek on May 20, 2010 - 12:14

    From the London review (above):

    “Saying Joe’s questions are hit and miss would suggest that the ratio of success to failures was about 50/50 when it would be fairer to say that Joe’s accuracy is more akin to Michael Fish than William Tell.”

    Excellent!

  6. #6 by lucy on February 17, 2013 - 13:04

    I am a big fan of Derren Brown and have seen everything he has done he is a lovely, kind gentleman. Having seen his regarding Mr Power all I can say is that Mr Power is nothing more than a con-artist, fraud and downright arrogant so and so. Well done Derren – great show!!!!

  7. #7 by lucy on February 17, 2013 - 13:05

    for some reason part of my comment was erased:-

    ”having seen his (Derren’s) show regarding Mr Power’ – it should have read.

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