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.


Blue Origin abandons patent for barge-landing a rocket

The heat of competition: After losing a decision of the U.S. Patent office in a dispute with SpaceX, Blue Origin has withdrawn the patent it was awarded in March 2014 for vertical landing a rocket on an ocean-going barge.

In an order made public today, the U.S. Patent Trial and Appeal Board granted a motion to cancel the remaining 13 of 15 claims in the Blue Origin rocket-landing patent. Blue Origin itself had made the motion to cancel those claims, effectively acknowledging that its case was lost.

Blue Origin, based in Kent, Wash., has separately filed a “reissue” patent application covering the same general area. However, SpaceX has already attempted multiple rocket landings at sea and would likely be grandfathered in, allowing it to continue the practice, even if Blue Origin were to ultimately succeed in securing a valid patent.

The two companies are definitely in a heated competition. This is not the only legal dispute they have had, with SpaceX winning previously as well. Blue Origin had challenged the award of a 20-year lease to SpaceX of its launchpad at Kennedy. It lost.

In this case, it was absurd on its face for the patent office to award this patent to Blue Origin, especially since, at the time it did so, SpaceX was clearly already doing this exact thing.

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