I recommend the book “Brainwashed: The seductive appeal of mindless neuroscience” by Satel & Lilienfeld. In this essay, I focus on one disagreement I have with the authors regarding their conclusion that justice must be retributive.

Dami Cinque

I return to some of my favorite themes (briefly): Free will, enlightenment, carnivory, ablutophobia, and critical thinking.

A Hysterical Critique of Psychological Science

Is Barbara Fredrickson's overplay of her data grounds for questioning psychological science as a whole? There’s a rhetorical question! Libertarian philosophy-dabbler Wilkinson thinks so, though.

Stupid People

If madness has method, so does stupidity – according to a new study. But please, don’t read this post. It’s academic. You already know that you are above average.

Dalai Lama, Scientist

I looked for evidence for the Dalai Lama’s science-mindedness in his encyclical on reincarnation. I found none.

Buddha Begs the Question

A TV special and Richard Gere’s soothing voice got me to thinking about Buddhism. What’s in it for us?

Rumpelstiltskin in Psychology

Once you’ve understood what I am telling you in this post, little will have changed.

Scientists, Games and Chicks

Scientists are respected, feared, misunderstood, ridiculed, and called in as expert witnesses. Most of them are underpaid. Why do they keep on doing what they do?

Whoa of Aggregation

Personality predicts entrepreneurship. Big data show this relationship even at the level of states. Oregon scores high; Rhode Island scores low.

Moral Convicts

Finally someone did a study on the prisoner’s dilemma using actual prisoners as participants. Turns out that prisoners are much like university students when it comes to strategic reasoning. Are they not less moral (as I think you might think)?

In Memoriam

Some of your strange (paranormal?) experiences you just have to live with. Here's mine.

Divano Letto

I begin this post with a consideration of altered states.

Psychology of Volunteering

Why do people (fail to) volunteer? Psychology has too many answers. Help me whittle down the number.

Volunteer's Headache

The folks of Alpha Centauri are coming. They will blow up Planet Earth unless at least one human steps forward to be abducted and ritually sacrificed. Can we count on you?

Prosper With Projection

If we reasonably expect others to choose and act in ways that are similar to how we choose and act, the prospect of successful cooperation does not seem quite as remote.

Trust in Children

In this post we will tell you whether interpersonal trust increases of decreases during childhood.

Decision and Illusion

Is making bad decisions like falling prey to a visual illusion? Prominent decision scientists see it that way, but their vision may be blurry.

Fine Cantiere

As the Bergamo days are winding down, it’s time for a review.

Love, Justice, Vengeance

I was as shocked by Woolwich as the next person. Now what?

Frutti di Bosco

Some thoughts fructify when the mind wanders.

Passo Carrabile

In Italy, my thoughts return to the unpredictability of human behavior. ‘Passo carrabile’ means ‘stay clear,’ as in ‘don’t block the driveway.’ Metaphorically, I ask you to keep on open mind.

Senza Piombo

Having gassed up with unleaded (senza piombo), I arrived in Bergamo to teach psychology. This post begins with a Neo-Freudian view on shame and blame and ends with notes from the road.

The Mystery of Trust Deepens

The decision to trust (vs. not) is recurring and of vital interest. People use all the cues they can get to make this decision, including invalid ones. If we could only tell the difference between the trustworthy and the untrustworthy by just looking at them. But we cannot.

Corto Circùito

Some thoughts are short-circuited. That does not make them false necessarily. Perhaps they can stimulate genuine insight. I am trying this for you in here.

Conspiracies (Plural) Theories

To believe two contradictory conspiracy theories at the same time is be irrational on steroids. There is some evidence that this occurs, but I cling to the possibility that the case is overstated.

And One More Thing

Lacking much-vaunted female intuition, I settle for unedited mentation.

Is National Defense a Public Good?

Let those who have the most to lose pay for national defense.

The Trinity of You

There are (at least) three different ways of thinking about the self. They are all true and they are all yours.

Freedom & Power

Power implies freedom. If freedom is an illusion, what is power?

Guess, Guess Again & Average

The inner crowd is alive and well in all its wisdom. Estimating the number of M&Ms in a jar is one way to see it, but some of us believe the findings generalize to, well, almost everything.