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Noteworthy Unhinged Lunatic Rants

Posted by John Benneth to the newsgroups sci.skeptic, alt.paranormal and alt.magic
20 February, 2000

John Benneth is a homeopath who claims to have proved that homeopathy works. He also claims that he has satisfied all the requirements for the James Randi $1,000,000 Challenge (he hasn't). He keeps posting defamatory messages about Randi, of which this is an example. You will note that it starts off with what is supposed to be a newspaper report (probably fabricated by Benneth) which claims that a magician behaved badly. This is then used to "prove" that Randi is also a bad person because he is also a magician. Benneth thinks this is logic. Benneth is insane.

This is one of the most disgusting pieces of verbiage I have seen in the long time I have been using the Internet. I make no apology for reproducing it here because I believe that people need to be exposed to the true horror of it. I have an unwavering commitment to freedom of speech, but, like all freedoms, it can be abused. I have no problem with the people who are trying to have Benneth's Internet access cancelled, because society has the right to protect itself from psychopaths.

It is also useful to have this here as a reference for people who hear the despicable rumours spread about people like James Randi. By reading the actual words of the people doing the accusing, it is possible to gauge the reliability of the rumours. Anyone reading this stream of idiocy and filth must come to the same conclusion that I and many others have, which is that Benneth is insane and his accusations can be ignored. If there is any truth in the following passage, it can only be in the words "and", "the" and "but".

Subject: Magician Bob Markwood found guilty Case compared to Randi and motivations for Psychic Challenge.

On February 16th, 2000, in the 268th District Court of Fort Bend County, Texas, psychic debunker and magician Robert Markwood was found guilty of indecency with a minor. He was sentenced by Judge Brady Elliott to 12 years in prison.

He can be considered for parole when he has served half of the sentence.

In this case that will be 5 years, 4 months, as he has already served 8 months in the Fort Bend Country Jail.

Apparently Markwood didn't consult with colleague James "the Amazing" Randi on how to stay out of jail. Randi is a Ft. Lauderdale psychic debunker who has also been accused of indecency with minors. But there's a difference here between Markwood and Randi that may account for why Markwood was put on trial and convicted and why Randi has never been tried on the issue in the face of blatant evidence. Randi is a celebrity magician, author of books, the subject of documentaries, head of his own foundation, winner of the MacArthur Foundation Genius Award, the world's most notorious debunker of psychics, frauds and pseudo-science and is backed by a 1.6 million dollars in promised awards and a Goldman Sachs bank account.

And what's more, Randi is an expert at staying out of jail, claiming to have staged 28 jail breaks in his career.

But in a testimony secretly obtained by award claimant John Benneth, Randi, in halting speech, extemporaneously confesses to an involvement in the suffocation death of a young boy he was "counseling" years ago.

He also brags about how he has escaped from many small, foreign jails by bribing his way into the good graces of night shift jail keepers to obtain lock designs.

Randi has countered Benneth's claims by insisting that "Benneth is a liar and a nut" on "heavy medication" and "mentally disturbed." Benneth says the data supporting his claim on the award speaks for itself, as does Randi's confession.

Benneth claims the Psychic Challenge is actually a lightning rod for the sexual abuse charges against Randi.

"We've given Randi every opportunity to provide a fair and objective test of the methods to prove our claim for homeopathy, but he has just responded with personal attacks," says Benneth.

It has been consistent with the history of the Challenge, that serious contenders are either ignored or dissuaded from pursuit of their claims by verbal abuse.

The Human Energy Systems Laboratory (HESL) at the University of Arizona in Tucson, which is now replicating one of Benneth's subtle energy tests, has also applied to the James Randi Educational Foundation, and has simply been ignored.

"When we submitted our data to Randi, he stopped communicating with us," says Dr. Gary Schwartz, director of the HESL and co author with Linda Russek of the Living Energy Universe.

"I bombarded Randi with e-mail trying to get him to give us a test," says reverse speech researcher David John Oates. "All he did was ignore it."

Oates claims that by reversing speech, words and phrases can be detected that reveal what the inner man is thinking. He has found chilling statements in the O.J. Simpson and Jon Benet Ramsey cases that point to a culprit.

Reverse speech analyst Michael Goodspeed analyzed the Randi tape and found evidence to suggest that Randi's association with escapology bears a deep hidden scar.

Randi has been convicted of libel twice, is currently being sued a third time and is also being sued for breach of contract on the Challenge.

"So the next question is why?" asks Benneth. "If the Psychic Challenge isn't a true scientific inquiry to explore challenged phenomena, then what is it?"

"I think it's become an excuse for his behavior," he says. "If anyone charges him with sexually abusing minors, his response is to say that he's being attacked for his psychic debunking activities. No one's ever really been tested in the Psychic Challenge. It's a hoax, and I think the man is getting away with murder."

Randi has offered a $1.6 million dollar award he claims is kept on account at Goldman Sachs to presumably award to anyone who can demonstrate what Randi considers to be paranormal activity, called the Psychic Challenge.

"I think it is motivated by 'psychephobia', a fear that his innermost secrets will be exposed by someone with psychic abilities," says Benneth.

Recently the communist Chinese have offered to support the award with an additional $1.2 million dollars, according to a web page announcement from the James Randi Educational Foundation, that then quickly disappeared.

The Chinese are using their Challenge as a part of their campaign to suppress religious practices that threaten to be more powerful than the government.

Randi has also been the subject of hot debate after the posting of taped conversations of him soliciting teenage boys for sex. Randi claims he made the tapes to catch phone pranksters and was talking dirty to them to keep them on the line.

But the tapes sound like genuine solicitations, with Randi and the boys arranging meeting times and places. In one conversation, Randi sounds like he is urging a young teenager to do something he doesn't want to.

The boy repeatedly responds to Randi's urging by saying, "I don't do that anymore."

The boys appear to be calling from graffiti scribbled on a bathroom wall by "Donald." In the conversations, Randi identifies himself as Donald.

In some conversations he invites the youngsters to his house, or offers to come and pick them up. When one caller offers to pick Randi up, he declines.

In another call, Randi tells the boy a secret place he'll leave a message for him.

Out of seven tapes, only one sounds as if the caller was insincere, only calling for self arousal. In this case the caller is the one who sounds like he is trying to keep Randi on the line rather than arrange a time and place for a meeting. Randi apparently hangs up on this caller abruptly.

Reportedly, Carl Sagan, once an ally of Randi's distanced himself after hearing these tapes.

Benneth has posted challenges on the Internet to Randi and his supporters to provide a public confession before Benneth releases transcripts of the suffocation testimony.

This may reveal something we all don't want to hear about, erotic asphyxiation, also known as asphyxophilia or hypoxyphilia, it is a paraphilia of the sacrificial type in which sexuoerotic arousal and attainment of orgasm depend on strangulation and asphyxiation. sexual

It is an activity that is mostly engaged in by sole male adolescents. But there is an even lesser known and darker side of sexual hanging.

In the gay community it's called scarfing. Participants strangle one another for sexual arousal.

Sometimes it goes too far. In one Midwest case the owner of a thrift store strangled to death a huge number of gay men before he was suspected.

Without sufficient evidence, after a year of fighting to get a search warrant, investigators seemed to have gone into shock when they discovered a wood lot in back of the suspect's home littered with human remains. As police reeled from their discovery, the suspect simply got in his car and disappeared.

According to the survivor who turned him in, he did it simply for the thrill of watching humans die, to see their lips turn blue and crack, and their eyes bulge out.

Sometimes erotic asphyxiation is practiced on kidnapped children, as in the Wesley Allen Dodd case, a Vancouver, Washington man who hung to death a Portland, Oregon boy and in turn was ironically allowed to hang as his own penalty.

It is a phenomena kept quiet by those who understand it because of the difficulty there is in openly discussing it and the fear of copycats.

The hanging motif runs throughout the phenomenon. Randi brags about his thrill in hanging over Niagara Falls in a straight jacket.

According to Randi, in August, Goldman Sachs demanded that Randi remove their name from his web site.


Why is it these psychic debunker types seem to have problems with this sort of thing?

Could it be that they want to convince everyone that it's impossible to know what they're thinking , because they desperately don't want anyone to know what they're thinking about?

Is that why they become magicians? So they can find ways to to hide their perversions? Is this why they're so desperately championed by a vocal minority of "men"?

Trixie Bond, the mother of one of the boys the Markwood molested writes, "Please remember, a crime like this against minors is truly tragic. It was and continues to be my hope that by helping to pursue the charges brought against Markwood and by exposing what happened in my personal life others will be encouraged to also come forward, expose this man and start their own track of personal healing."

"Now that it is over," says Bond, "perhaps all the lives that have been affected, but mostly the ones I love the best, my son and his friend, will begin to heal.

"I thank the magic community for their support this past year," said Bond after the Markwood sentence pronouncement. "It has meant a great deal to me. I would also like to thank Houston magicians, Walter Blaney, Scott Hollingsworth, Jamie Salinas, Bob Smith, Russ McGee, Dennis Keim and Phil Kampf who all sat in the courtroom with me and my son."

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