Just last week I wrote about the disgraceful decision on the part of Maryland’s highest court to reject Montgomery County’s ban on paid fortune-telling services on alleged Constitutional grounds. And I wrote a lengthier piece about it over at the Gotham Skeptic.
But as Mark Edward reports, now it seems the UK may be on the verge of banning paid “psychic” services, citing consumer protection regulations designed to prevent fraud.
It’s safe to say that Paul the psychic octopus is not going to be happy about this. But other psychics aren’t very pleased either. They argue for going back to the 1951 Fraudulent Mediums Act that requires the plaintiff to prove the medium deliberately committed fraud. Another defense they use is that this is all part of their religion, and therefore should be protected under freedom of religion laws. Now I must admit that I’m ignorant of British free speech laws (though I suspect they stole them pretty much from us–limey bastards!) but I’m pretty sure making a living charging people for fraudulent services does not constitute as a religion or as free speech. Religions are free; scams aren’t.
So my proposal is a legal foreign exchange program. We’ll give the UK our sane libel laws and they give us their banning fraudulent psychic reform. Do we have a deal?