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Psychics predict the future. Do they?

We're just about to go into the psychic prediction season, so it's a good time to look at how well they did in predicting what would happen in 2011. I don't have all the space in the world here so I've chosen three sets of predictions to see how well psychics scored over the year.

I originally picked four examples, all except one of them claiming to be close to the top of the profession. I was going to include the winner of the TV show "The One", billed as "Australia's Most Gifted Psychic", but the show's web site is still predicting the past and doesn't say who won. (It was Greg Riley, but he doesn't issue yearly predictions, apparently.) The examples are Sarah Kulkens (The 7th Generation Psychic), Nikki (a "leading Canadian soothsayer"), Kit Carson (who uses the corporate slogan "The Prediction of Future") and a mystery guest whose identity might be revealed later.

After looking at Kit Carson's predictions they all seemed to be things that had happened in 2010, so I decided to leave him out. Anybody can say "Same as last year".

The first is Sarah Kulkens. Sarah's mother, Kerry, had the distinction of still offering telephone psychic consultations for several months after she died, showing extreme dedication to her craft. Here are Sarah's predictions and the results:

  1. Secret conversations between leaders resulting in a huge shake up of the government. – There was a cabinet reshuffle but nobody thought it was huge.
  2. More and more people moving away from the major banks and credit cards. – But the banks made record profits. Where were people putting their money? Kmart did not report a sales boom for piggy banks. (Actually, there was a move back to the big banks.)
  3. Stronger ties between Australia and New Zealand mainly in the meat industry. – If apples are meat, yes, but otherwise no.
  4. Building industry in for a huge boom. – House prices stable for the year, even falling in some areas.
  5. Scandals involving the stock market. – No more than usual.
  6. Problems between Australia and other countries with trade contracts already in place. – A little vague, but I'll give her a win for the Indonesian live beef imbroglio.
  7. Major air disaster involving Australia. – Nope.
  8. Western Australia earthquake activity. – Not that anybody noticed.
  9. Huge unrest in Queensland between residents and government especially around fruit and vegetable price rises for fruit coming in from overseas. – The problem seems to be cheap fruit.
  10. Japan and New Zealand in fishing wars. – Paul Watson is Canadian, so it can't be Sea Shepherd.
  11. Big shake up in Australian government resulting in change of leadership. – Nope.
  12. Collapse of a health fund. – Nope.
  13. Damaging winds around August. – A Hit!!!!!!!
  14. Gold and oil being found in unusual places. – No, just where they had always been found
  15. Severe poisoning from prescribed drugs. – Happens all the time, but OK, a hit.
  16. Huge breakthrough of a link found between plastics and cancer. – No
  17. Terrorist attack on Australian transport. – No
  18. Another child for Danni Minogue. Nope.
  19. Bodies of missing people found. – Well, duh! A hit.
  20. Huge amount of oil found off Western Australia coast. – Nope – the big oil is over East Timor way.

Score: 4/20, 20%

I hadn't heard of Nikki, the leading Canadian soothsayer, but she is very precise and adventurous in her predictions:

  1. The Obamas may even have twins as siblings for daughters Malia and Sasha. – Nope.
  2. Former vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin will be heading for a particularly 'messy' divorce. – Her husband and her talked about divorce in 2009, and there were rumours again in late 2011, but she's still married.
  3. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton will win the Nobel Peace Prize. – Nope.
  4. George Clooney will finally get hitched, but current girlfriend Elizabeth Canalis stands only a 50/50 chance of being the bride. – No and no
  5. Nikki also said that showbiz power couple Warren Beatty and Annette Benning 'have outgrown each other' and will split up.- They still seem to be together.
  6. In an even more unlikely forecast, she said that an unnamed Hollywood starlet would give birth to a dwarf. The mind boggles as to who she might be speaking about. – Well, it didn't happen or I would have read about it in New Idea.
  7. Lady Gaga will try out acting. The over-the-top singer will try her hand at both dramatic and comedic roles, including a possible turn on Broadway. – No, no and no. (And hopefully in the future no, no, no, …)
  8. Nikki confidently predicted that actor George Clooney would walk up the isle in a lavish wedding ceremony this year. The interesting part of the prediction is that it may not be with his current girlfriend Elisabetta Canalis. – It certainly wasn't with Elisabetta, because it didn't happen.
  9. One marvel will be the world's first successful brain transplant. – No, although I have met people who could benefit from it.
  10. She said the year was all about the medical breakthroughs, claiming that the brain transplant will likely be performed in the U.S. or the UK. – Neither actually.
  11. Hawaii gold rush: 'Gold mining companies will go big on this one' and people will 'absolutely move' there in an effort to cash in. – No.
  12. Giant spiders: A new species of giant spider will be found in South America. 'There's always new species being found down there.' – 2010, maybe, and in Madagascar, so I guess this is a miss.
  13. Horseshoe UFO over New Mexico: 'it's the uncommon shape of the horseshoe that's interesting here.' – So uncommon that it didn't even happen.
  14. Migration south: Polar bears and penguins moving south due to global warming – it's hard for penguins to go further south without ending up in a big pile at the South Pole, so this is probably a miss.
  15. One of the best breakthroughs for the year will be progress in the fight against Alzheimer's disease. Controversially, she added: 'This will come from stem cell research.' – YES!! Research had been going on since 2004, but results had to come some day.
  16. France will not be left out of the scientific wonders. Nikki believes that a French team will develop the world's first bionic eye. – They will have to beat the Australian team but they haven't yet.
  17. Playboy Hugh Heffner might be in the flush of his engagement to Crystal Harris, but Nikki said things could get a little hot at the Playboy mansion this year, when the place burns down. – As Hefner and Harris are no longer together and the Playboy house is still standing this might count as two misses.

Score: 1/18, 5.5%

And now for the mystery contestant:

  1. Everybody knows there will be a state election in NSW in March. The incoming government (of whatever flavour that wins) will announce that things are much worse than they knew before the election and consequently railway projects first announced as far back as the 1930s will have to be delayed. – North West line plans were changed so that the capacity was halved and commuters will have no direct line to the Sydney CBD. This will save money – Hit.
  2. The 2011 Nobel Prize for Medicine or Physiology will be awarded for an achievement which will not be a cure for all forms of cancer. The winner will not be a homeopath, chiropractor or naturopath. – No cure for cancer, and no quacks – Hit
  3. At least three people will announce that they will be running for President of the USA in 2012. One of these potential candidates will be barking mad. – Donald Trump, Newt Gingrich, Michelle Bachmann, … – Hit
  4. There will be a sex scandal involving a football team and a girl with a Twitter account. – An unnamed English footballer sued Twitter because his affair with an celebrity who had been a Big Brother loser was revealed, presumably by the lady herself. Hit, but I'm only allowing half a point because it wasn't the whole team.
  5. To avoid spoiling William and Kate's special day, Prince Charles and Camilla will not announce before the wedding that they are about disrupt the succession to the throne because Camilla is pregnant. – Hit Will and Kate are married, Camilla is still not pregnant.
  6. A highly-paid Sydney radio announcer will say something terribly stupid on air and will be suspended until the outrage dies away. Then he will be reinstated. – Half a Hit I'm only allowing half points for Kyle Sandilands' verbal assault on the journalist who wrote a less than enthusiastic review of his execrable television show. A lot of sponsors withdrew from his radio program but he kept his job.
  7. Petrol prices will reach peaks just before holiday weekends. This will be blamed on the price of Tapis crude, the cost of refining in Singapore, the high value of the Australian dollar, the low value of the Australian dollar, and possibly the phase of the moon (at Easter). – Hit As just one example, there was a 16% rise in price immediately before the June long weekend.
  8. The Australian cricket team will score more than 300 runs in a test match. – Hit It took until the December test against New Zealand, but it happened.
  9. Newspapers and tabloid television current affairs shows will carry stories warning of the danger of radiation from mobile phones. Physicists referring to Einstein's 1905 paper on the photoelectric effect will be ignored. – Hit All over the newspapers in June.
  10. A major musical act will announce retirement. This will be reconsidered following the success of the "Farewell Forever, I'm Not Coming Back" tour. – Miss Not yet, but Cold Chisel started doing shows again following their "once only" reunion for the Sydney V8 Supercar race meeting a year or so back. This year the headline act was Hunters and Collectors doing a "once only" show. If they announce a 2012 reunion tour before December 31 I will allow the point.
  11. There will be floods, droughts, blizzards, landslides, tsunamis or earthquakes affecting nine countries with an "A" in their names. – Hit Japan, New Zealand, Australia, Indonesia, United States, Taiwan, China, Malaysia, Canada
  12. Scientists and environmental groups will claim that the floods, droughts, blizzards, landslides, tsunamis or earthquakes are evidence of climate change. Climate change will be denied in response. – Hit See any scientific site about climate, any dark green environmentalist site or any climate change denial site. It's all there.
  13. A prominent sporting identity will be caught out having extramarital affairs. Evidence will be something stupid done by the identity, such as leaving lewd text messages on his phone for his wife or girlfriend to see. – Hit "Sex Scandal Puts Australian Football Agent Ricky Nixon In Hot Water"

Score: 11/13, 84.6%

So we have three contestants who scored 20%, 5.5% and 84.6%.

Which one would you give your money to if you were looking for a professional psychic? Modesty prevents me from saying who the best was, but he isn't a professional prognosticator. Quite the opposite, some might even say.

This article was published on the Yahoo! 7 News Blog on December 28, 2011
Yahoo! 7 News

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