Conscious Choice cover

From the press release: In this ground-breaking new history of early America, historian Robert Zimmerman not only exposes the lie behind The New York Times 1619 Project that falsely claims slavery is central to the history of the United States, he also provides profound lessons about the nature of human societies, lessons important for Americans today as well as for all future settlers on Mars and elsewhere in space.

 
Conscious Choice: The origins of slavery in America and why it matters today and for our future in outer space, is a riveting page-turning story that documents how slavery slowly became pervasive in the southern British colonies of North America, colonies founded by a people and culture that not only did not allow slavery but in every way were hostile to the practice.  
Conscious Choice does more however. In telling the tragic history of the Virginia colony and the rise of slavery there, Zimmerman lays out the proper path for creating healthy societies in places like the Moon and Mars.

 

“Zimmerman’s ground-breaking history provides every future generation the basic framework for establishing new societies on other worlds. We would be wise to heed what he says.” —Robert Zubrin, founder of founder of the Mars Society.

 

Available everywhere for $3.99 (before discount) at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and 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.


Amazon protests SpaceX’s Starlink plan to FCC

Amazon on August 25, 2021 filed a protest with the FCC against SpaceX’s proposed expansion of its Starlink constellation that would allow almost 30,000 satellites to be launched.

“Should the Commission depart from its rules and precedent and endorse the approach of applying for multiple, mutually exclusive configurations, the consequences will extend far beyond the SpaceX Amendment,” wrote Mariah Shuman, corporate counsel for Amazon’s broadband megaconstellation venture Project Kuiper, in an Aug. 25 letter to the FCC. “However inefficient this strategy might be for the Commission and parties responding to applications, other prospective licensees will surely see the benefit in maximizing their optionality by describing multiple configurations in their license applications.”

Shuman asked the FCC to “dismiss SpaceX’s Amendment, and invite SpaceX to resubmit its amendment after settling on a single configuration for its Gen2 System.”

It appears Amazon does not want the FCC to approve multiple proposed satellite configurations put forth by SpaceX in a single application. Instead, it wants the FCC to force SpaceX to pick one, and submit that alone. It also appears that doing what Amazon requests would be more in line with past FCC policy.

While Amazon might have a point, the optics once again make another Jeff Bezos’ company look ugly, more interested in using the courts to stymie its competitors than actually launching anything. Amazon’s Kuiper internet constellation was first proposed in early 2019. More than two years have passed and none of its more than 3200 satellites have launched — not even one test satellite — with no clear indication yet on when launches will finally begin.

SpaceX began testing its Starlink system in 2018, and already has about 1,700 operational satellites in orbit. The comparison between the two companies is stark, and not favorable to Amazon.

In fact, Elon Musk was not shy in taking advantage of these optics to note them quite sharply in a tweet yesterday, saying, “Turns out Besos [sic] retired in order to pursue a full-time job filing lawsuits against SpaceX.”

Amazon is not Blue Origin, but both companies were founded by Bezos, and it appears right now that both prefer court battles to rocket engineering.

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3 comments

  • Ray Van Dune

    We know SpaceX by the enemies they keep!

  • Jeff Wright

    The pro-SLS folks I know just want to fly…like Musk. But ULA old space and a certain new spacer would rather throw shade-honorable vs dishonorable space…that’s your divide.

  • I’m pleased with my Starlink service. I didn’t even investigate alternatives. Once I found Starlink was available, I went for it. Presumably there are cable and phone options, but I don’t know.

    There seems to be a coverage gap over me from around 0900 to 0915. Latency gets spotty. Streaming apps don’t notice, but I use RDP and VOIP, which do. Other than that, I can’t tell the difference from the 1Gbps fiber I had from CenturyLink. I’m not doubting the bandwidth difference, but if I never used it, did it exist?

    I’m very pleased to know that my monthly ISP fees are going mainly to SpaceX.

    For the tech inclined, it is not your ISPs fault when your internet goes out due to putting the wrong interface after the “-o” option in the iptables command – no matter how many times you’ve read the configuration without noticing nor how long you’ve spent trying to figure out why the Internet only exists on one side of your router.

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