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ESA dithers, forming committee to study concept of building its own manned capsule

My heart be still! The European Space Agency (ESA) has decided to create a committee to study the concept of building a European manned capsule so that it will no longer be dependent on either the U.S. or Russia to get its astronauts into space.

Aschbacher said a draft mandate for the new advisory group will be presented to ESA members at a March meeting of the ESA Council, with the goal for the group to start working immediately thereafter. The committee will prepare an interim report in time for the ministerial meeting in November, with a final report by next spring.

“It is clear that this group has to be independent and comprising mostly non-space experts,” he said, “because we really would like to look at various aspects of society from an economic point of view, a historical point of view, a geopolitical point of view.” That means including people such as artists and philosophers in the group to look at various aspects of exploration beyond science and technology. [emphasis mine]

The highlighted words illustrate the empty PR nature of this committee. It will not result in any European manned spacecraft at all. Instead, it will spend more than a year talking a lot about the wonders of space, and then produce a report repeating how wonderful space is and how Europe must be there.

The result? ESA will have wasted a year and not gotten itself one iota closer to having its own manned spacecraft.

If this hollow effort was the exception to the rule for Europe, there might be hope some political pressure could get the committee reformed and actually include engineers to develop a real design. That hope is in vain, however, because this is how Europe and ESA does everything. By the time ESA produces the first designs of this capsule, probably five to six years hence, it will be so out-of-date that building it would be a joke.

In a larger sense, this absurd committee and the top management at ESA and in the European Union that proposed it illustrate the overall bankruptcy of modern civilization’s entire management class. The people running governments worldwide are generally all do-nothing idiots, who talk a lot, waste a lot of money for their own aggrandizement, impose taxes and regulations on everyone else that makes the lives of ordinary people a misery, and fail in almost every project they undertake. We need only look at their panicked, dishonest, and failed global response to the Wuhan flu in the past two years for a prime example.

The official intellectual class that is running our governments worldwide are bankrupt. They need to be fired.

Conscious Choice cover

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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.


All editions are available at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and all book vendors, with the ebook priced at $5.99 before discount. The ebook can also be purchased direct from my ebook publisher, ebookit, in which case you don't support the big tech companies and I get a bigger cut much sooner.


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  • David Lohnes

    “The official intellectual class that is running our governments worldwide are bankrupt. They need to be fired.”


    My biggest disappointment with Trump’s tenure was not draining the swamp. I had a real hope that departments would be eliminated.

  • Jeff Wright

    The Euros are worse than Baptists on committees. Ariane 6 could have paid for Hermes.

  • Col Beausabre

    Good! That allows the US to get further ahead.

  • Edward

    The people running governments worldwide are generally all do-nothing idiots, who talk a lot, waste a lot of money for their own aggrandizement, impose taxes and regulations on everyone else that makes the lives of ordinary people a misery, and fail in almost every project they undertake.

    These guys are proud of being the ruling class, calling themselves “policymakers,” but I don’t think that is something to brag about. Policymakers and negotiators have done a poor job of running the world. Some of them intentionally start wars, and others fail to prevent those wars. Just in the past couple of years, they gave us an unnecessary panic over a new but routine disease and caused widespread fear of looming wars around the world, which wouldn’t have happened if the U.S. policymakers hadn’t lost the peace in Afghanistan. In the U.S., inflation, supply shortages, increased crime rates, and increased non-Wuhan flu death rates have plagued us. These guys muck up (or another “F” word) everything they touch.

    “While Europe is still at the forefront of many space endeavors, such as Earth observation, navigation and space science, it is lagging in the increasingly strategic domains of space transportation and exploration,”

    So, now these muck-ups are forming a committee to determine what their coalition of countries should pursue in space. Do they really need a committee of artists and philosophers to tell them that they should focus on getting themselves at the forefront of “the increasingly strategic domains of space transportation and exploration?” They are going to waste a year and a quarter on this stupid committee of inappropriate members?

    “With utmost urgency, European leaders must decide now whether Europe shall accelerate its efforts to remain in the leading ranks of spacefaring nations that shape the future of this planet, or to fall behind into the role of a junior partner for decades to come.”

    Since it is urgent that they decide now, perhaps they should decide now, not next year. They have already stated where they are lagging, so they know where they should focus.

    This reminds me of the book and movie “The Martian,” in which NASA and CNSA leaders negotiate directly with each other in order to rescue Mark Watney, rather than going through their respective state departments. They knew that the policymakers would negotiate forever, but the scientists easily worked out a deal with a single phone call. Why was this part of the fictional story believable? Because everyone knows from observation that policymakers are muck-ups.

    The post’s linked article is another example of why they are muck-ups. The saying is to set a thief to catch a thief, but these European policymakers are setting artists and philosophers to catch technical and scientific priorities. Putzes.

    Are these people evil, the who are running governments worldwide? Maybe. Andrew Klavan recently opined on how people become evil, and gave his own definition of evil: (11 minutes)
    … there is one thing all evil has in common, and that is why it’s my definition of evil. Evil is willingly, persistently turning away from what I have called the great speculation, … that other people’s inner lives are just as important to them as yours is to you, and both are equally important to God.

    The reason that power, specifically, can lead people to evil is that it lifts people up into a high place where other people no longer seem like individuals at all, but they seem like a mass, and their problems seem to be fixable by moving them around.

    So, are our do-nothing idiot policymakers evil people? Yes. One-size-fits-all solutions come from people who have lost their way and have stopped thinking of us as individuals but as a mass.

    How do we recover from these evil people? By continuing to be individuals and by outmaneuvering them in the progress we make. When the governments and policymakers have control, all we get is what the governments and policymakers want and at the speed they are willing to give it. When We the People are in control, we get what we want as soon as we can get it.

    Water has been said to be space’s equivalent of crude oil on Earth. This makes it clear that whoever has control of water on the Moon will have control in space. The next space leaders will be the ones taking the lead in using water from the lunar poles for space bases and space transportation. If European governments and policymakers dawdle for the next 15 months or so, they may end up being the junior customer to Blue Origin, SpaceX, or other companies for decades to come.

  • Star Bird

    Goody goody how soon can we build their Star Bases and Deep Space Stations as well like K-7 Near Sherman’s Planet

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