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.
 

Florida proves (again) the stupidity of mask mandates

On September 25, 2020 the Republican governor of Florida, Ron De Santis, lifted all mandates on mask use while ending all restrictions on restaurants

He was immediately lambasted by numerous Democratic Party Florida mayors as well as:

Dr. Anthony Fauci, who warned that the change is “very concerning to me. When you’re dealing with community spread, and you have the kind of congregate setting where people get together, particularly without masks, you’re really asking for trouble.”

The mayor of Miami Beach, Democrat Dan Gelber, was especially harsh, stating in a letter to De Santis that

“the notion that we are still debating (a mask mandate) seems incomprehensible given the recent infections of the First Family, and the horrific impact the virus has had on our own residents.”[emphasis mine]

I highlight the word “horrific” beause the only truly horrible thing about this epidemic is the nightmare of making everyone wear masks at all times even as they see their jobs vanish and their businesses destroyed.

These critics were also certain the freedom to not use masks would immediately cause a spike in the infection rate in Florida.

Florida's COVID-19 statistics for the past ninety days

NOT. It is two weeks later, when you’d expect to start seeing a rise in cases, and there is none.

The graph to the right (source here) illustrates this. There has been no obvious increase in either cases or deaths. From the link:

Data gleaned from the Florida Department of Health … shows that the positivity rate remains relatively steady, standing at 4.57 percent as of Wednesday and even reaching a low of 3.73 percent earlier in the week.

New cases also appear to remain steady following DeSantis’s move, ranging from 810 new daily cases (reported September 27) to over 3,300 reported on Thursday. Notably, the case number has fluctuated over the past month, reaching 3,651 on September 10, roughly two weeks prior to DeSantis lifting restrictions.

A brief look at fatalities by the date of death shows a downward trend as well:

Moreover, the local governments controlled by Democrats began to institute mask mandates in July, which is exactly when there was a rise in cases in that state, followed soon thereafter by a rise in deaths.

The evidence that masks can limit the spread of the coronavirus remains highly disputed. What is not disputed is that if you use a mask improperly, touching it and not cleaning it after removal, as everyone does, you almost guarantee you are acting to spread disease to yourself.

It seems to me that the second but smaller wave of cases and deaths nationwide this summer appears directly tied to the imposition of mask mandates in the late spring. With the widespread use of dirty masks, all of which were pathogen bombs on people’s faces, the infection rate rose.

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