The Skeptics Society & Skeptic magazine

The Work of Michael Shermer

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Happy New Year 2008! We are pleased to start the year off with an announcement of our new website: . Dr. Michael Shermer is the Publisher and Editor of Skeptic magazine and the co-founder of the Skeptics Society. This site features the writings and work of Michael Shermer, including FREE posts of:

  • his lecture schedule & touring information
  • his monthly Scientific American column
  • excerpts & reviews from his 11 books, plus how to order
  • essays & book reviews that have appeared in Skeptic magazine, Los Angeles Times, Washington Post, Science, Scientific American, Toronto Globe & Mail, American Scientist, and elsewhere
  • video from his many media appearances, including clips from his 13-hour TV documentary series on science and the unknown

Each column, article, book review, essay, video is available to leave a comment on or to discuss online. Please do leave your thoughts on the topics — we’d like to hear them.

Check Back Weekly!

We’ve started off by posting content in reverse chronological order (oldest to newest) and will continue to add three new FREE items (articles, columns, videos) every week throughout the year!

Link to Us

Support the work of Michael Shermer, an activist and essayist, much of whose work is available free online. Link to us using these resources we’ve created for you.


You can also subscribe to the website’s RSS feed which will be automatically updated with all new additions, or to our eSkeptic newsletter which will also list the new additions of the week.


Michael’s latest book
The Mind of the Market

How did we evolve from ancient hunter-gatherers to modern consumer-traders? Why are people so emotional and irrational when it comes to money and business decisions? Bestselling author Michael Shermer believes that evolution and evolutionary psychology provides an answer to both of these questions through the new science of evolutionary economics.

Drawing on research from neuroeconomics, Shermer explores what brain scans reveal about bargaining, snap purchases, and how trust is established in business. Utilizing experiments in behavioral economics, Shermer shows why people hang on to losing stocks and failing companies, why business negotiations often disintegrate into emotional tit-for-tat disputes, and why money does not make us happy. Employing research from complexity theory, Shermer shows how evolution and economics are both examples of a larger and still somewhat mysterious phenomenon of emergence, where one plus one equals three.

Along the way, Shermer answers such provocative questions as, Do our tribal roots mean that we will always be a sucker for brands? How is the biochemical joy of sex similar to the rewards of business cooperation? How can nations increase trust within their borders? Finally, Shermer considers the consequences of globalization and what will happen if nations allow free trade across their borders.

Throughout this entertaining and surprising book Shermer considers the morality of markets in a discussion of what he calls virtue economics. Although we are selfish and altruistic, cooperative and competitive, peaceful and bellicose, in the main the balance is heavily on the side of good over evil. For every random act of violence that makes the evening news, there are 10,000 nonrandom acts of kindness that go unrecorded every day. Markets are moral and modern economies are founded on our virtuous nature. The Enron model of business is the exception and the Google motto of “Don’t Be Evil” is the rule. The Mind of the Market will change the way we think about the economics of everyday life.

Get it autographed!

Michael is happy to personally autograph your copy of the book. Simply, place your order in Shop Skeptic and in the “comments” section of the checkout process, tell us you’d like it signed. If you want the autographed personalized, just say so!

ORDER the book

READ the New York Post
review of the book

READ other reviews & endorsements

READ an excerpt from the book

Michael Shermer speaking

Michael’s North American book tour
for The Mind of the Market

Cambridge, MA
January 8, 2008 at 7 pm
New York, NY
January 9, 2008 at 6 pm
Washington, DC
January 11, 2008 at 12 pm
Washington, DC
January 12, 2008 at 7 pm
Chicago, IL
January 14, 2008 at 6:30 pm
Philadelphia, PA
January 15, 2008 at 7:30 pm
Denver, CO
January 17, 2008 at 7:30 pm
Portland, OR
January 21, 2008 at 7:30 pm
Seattle, WA
January 23, 2008 at 7:30 pm
Mountain View, CA
January 25, 2008 at 7:30 pm
Menlo Park, CA
January 29, 2008 at 7:30 pm
Los Angeles, CA
January 30, 2008 at 12 pm
Pasadena, CA
January 30, 2008 at 7 pm
Del Mar, CA
January 31, 2008 at 7 pm

REFER to the latest schedule for updates

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Skeptic cover art by Pat Linse

Art of the Skeptic

In celebration of Skeptic magazine’s 100th issue, we present sage graphic art advice for skeptical groups and a gallery of art reflecting more than 47 years of skeptical activism from Skeptic’s long time Art Director, Pat Linse

Detecting Baloney

Baloney Detection Kit Sandwich (Infographic) by Deanna and Skylar (High Tech High Media Arts, San Diego, CA)

The Baloney Detection Kit Sandwich (Infographic)

For a class project, a pair of 11th grade physics students created the infographic shown below, inspired by Michael Shermer’s Baloney Detection Kit: a 16-page booklet designed to hone your critical thinking skills.

FREE PDF Download

Wisdom of Harriet Hall

Top 10 Things to Know About Alternative Medicine

Harriet Hall M.D. discusses: alternative versus conventional medicine, flu fear mongering, chiropractic, vaccines and autism, placebo effect, diet, homeopathy, acupuncture, “natural remedies,” and detoxification.

FREE Video Series

Science Based Medicine vs. Alternative Medicine

Science Based Medicine vs. Alternative Medicine

Understanding the difference could save your life! In this superb 10-part video lecture series, Harriet Hall M.D., contrasts science-based medicine with so-called “complementary and alternative” methods.

FREE PDF Download

Top 10 Myths of Terrorism

Is Terrorism an Existential Threat?

This free booklet reveals 10 myths that explain why terrorism is not a threat to our way of life or our survival.

FREE PDF Download

The Top 10 Weirdest Things

The Top Ten Strangest Beliefs

Michael Shermer has compiled a list of the top 10 strangest beliefs that he has encountered in his quarter century as a professional skeptic.

FREE PDF Download

Reality Check: How Science Deniers Threaten Our Future (paperback cover)

Who believes them? Why? How can you tell if they’re true?

What is a conspiracy theory, why do people believe in them, and can you tell the difference between a true conspiracy and a false one?

FREE PDF Download

The Science Behind Why People See Ghosts

The Science Behind Why People See Ghosts

Mind altering experiences are one of the foundations of widespread belief in the paranormal. But as skeptics are well aware, accepting them as reality can be dangerous…

FREE PDF Download

Top 10 Myths About Evolution

Top 10 Myths About Evolution (and how we know it really happened)

If humans came from apes, why aren’t apes evolving into humans? Find out in this pamphlet!

FREE PDF Download

Learn to be a Psychic in 10 Easy Lessons

Learn to do Psychic “Cold Reading” in 10
Easy Lessons

Psychic readings and fortunetelling are an ancient art — a combination of acting and psychological manipulation.

FREE PDF Download

The Yeti or Abominable Snowman

5 Cryptid Cards

Download and print 5 Cryptid Cards created by Junior Skeptic Editor Daniel Loxton. Creatures include: The Yeti, Griffin, Sasquatch/Bigfoot, Loch Ness Monster, and the Cadborosaurus.

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