Readers!
 

My annual February birthday month fund-raising campaign for Behind the Black is now over. It was the best February campaign ever, and the second best of all of my month-long fund-raising campaigns.

 

There were too many people who contributed to thank you all personally. If I did so I would not have time for the next day or so to actually do any further posts, and I suspect my supporters would prefer me posting on space and culture over getting individual thank you notes.

 

Let this public thank suffice. I say this often, but I must tell you all that you cannot imagine how much your support means to me. I’ve spent my life fighting a culture hostile to my perspective, a hostility that has often served to squelch my success. Your donations have now allowed me to bypass that hostility to reach a large audience.

 

Even though the February campaign is over, if you still wish to donate or subscribe you still can do so. Regular readers can support Behind The Black with a contribution via paypal:

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If Paypal doesn't work for you, you can support Behind The Black directly by sending your donation by check, payable to Robert Zimmerman, to
 
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NASA stalls, Texas lawmakers fume

The law is such an inconvenient thing: In a bipartisan effort, Texas lawmakers roast NASA administrator Charles Bolden for not meeting mandated Congressional deadlines for Congress’s personally designed rocket, the program-formerly-called-Constellation.

The heavy-lift rocket and capsule that Congress insists NASA build is a complete waste of money and nothing more than pork. It will never get built, mainly because Congress has given NASA less money and less time to build it than they did for Constellation under the Bush administration. Unfortunately, the reason they continue to require NASA to build it is to provide pork to their districts.

In a perfect world this funding would be cut now, especially considering the state of the federal debt.

Nonetheless, Congress has still mandated the rocket’s construction, and as far as I know, we still live under the rule of law. As stupid as the program-formerly-called-Constellation is, the Obama administration has no legal right to stall the program or try to kill it. If the funds are appropriated by Congress for this rocket, than the administration must spend those funds. That the Obama administration continues to defy Congress on this matter is just another worrisome example of their willingness to ignore the law.

That our society seems increasingly willing to look the other way in this matter is even more worrisome. If we don’t start demanding that our politicians from both parties obey the law, it won’t be long before they abandon it altogether, for their own power-hungry purposes.

Pioneer cover

From the press release: From the moment he is handed a possibility of making the first alien contact, Saunders Maxwell decides he will do it, even if doing so takes him through hell and back.

 
Unfortunately, that is exactly where that journey takes him.

 
The vision that Zimmerman paints of vibrant human colonies on the Moon, Mars, the asteroids, and beyond, indomitably fighting the harsh lifeless environment of space to build new societies, captures perfectly the emerging space race we see today.


He also captures in Pioneer the heart of the human spirit, willing to push forward no matter the odds, no matter the cost. It is that spirit that will make the exploration of the heavens possible, forever, into the never-ending future.

 
Available everywhere for $3.99 (before discount) at amazon, Barnes & Noble, all ebook vendors, or direct from the ebook publisher, ebookit.
 

5 comments

  • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BbuQ7mAFeZQ

    Watch as a congressional representative learns to use logic before your very eyes!

  • Joe2

    Point of Agreement: The Obama Administration should be following the law on this and is not. Wonder how long they are going to be able to get away with it?

    Point of Disagreement: The Congressmen who expressed displeasure with the situation came from states other than Texas as well. In fact Congressional displeasure with the situation seems to not be limited by geography or even party.

    Just a Point: I think everybody who reads your postings knows what a big waste you think SLS/MPCV (or anything other than ‘New Space’) is. Why waste the band width restating your same position over and over again in such strident terms?

  • Charles Alvarez

    I give up. Just give me my bag of Cheetos, diet Coke, government check and I’ll be happy.

  • Joe2

    Charles Alvarez says: Posted July 16, 2011 at 4:44 PM
    “I give up. Just give me my bag of Cheetos, diet Coke, government check and I’ll be happy”

    Understand the feeling. Unfortunately that is probably the exact reaction the current administration wants.

  • Joe2

    You might want to take a look at this:

    http://blog.al.com/space-news/2011/07/nasa_heavy-lift_rocket_support.html

    The Administration is also slowing MPCV development (supposedly to bring it into line with the slower version of SLS development they are forcing). I would also be interesting to know where that MPCV money is being spent.

    Incredible.

Readers: the rules for commenting!

 

No registration is required. I welcome all opinions, even those that strongly criticize my commentary.

 

However, name-calling and obscenities will not be tolerated. First time offenders who are new to the site will be warned. Second time offenders or first time offenders who have been here awhile will be suspended for a week. After that, I will ban you. Period.

 

Note also that first time commenters as well as any comment with more than one link will be placed in moderation for my approval. Be patient, I will get to it.

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