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. And if you buy it from ebookit you don't support the big tech companies and I get a bigger cut much sooner.

Against the advice of almost every farm organization the USDA is proceeding with regulations that will require farmers to individually tag every chicken and cow.

Racists! Against the advice of almost every farm organization the USDA is proceeding with regulations that will require farmers to individually tag every chicken and cow.

Fidelis Hegngi, a senior staff veterinarian at USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, also has his doubts. “To really truly have something like tagging work on poultry you would need to have something absolute because birds move a lot, if you don’t have something absolute, it’s not going to work. … I don’t think the technology is there yet to really implement the bird ID to be fully, fully functional,” Mr. Hegngi said. Government officials have not said whether they would check animals for identification at traffic stops.

Ms. Bergener has a simple solution to the poultry police: “I’m going to do selective passive resistance,” she said. “I’m not tagging.” …

According to the letter to OMB, the USDA’s disconnect with farmers does not stop at rules for poultry. The USDA estimates a rancher’s cost to identify cattle at 18 cents a head, but the letter cites a study from North Dakota State University that places the actual cost of cow citizenship at $20 a head.

Nowhere is it explained why the USDA is demanding such stringent ID requirements of farmers, other than to make their lives difficult and to increase the petty power of the Washington bureaucracy.

In other words, for the Obama administration it all can be summarized like this: “Voter ID bad! Chicken ID good!”


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