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.

Hubble in safe mode again

According to NASA’s Twitter feed for the Hubble Space Telescope, it went into safe mode earlier this week because of “issues with internal communications.”

Hubble’s science instruments went into safe mode on Monday after experiencing synchronization issues with internal spacecraft communications. Science observations have been temporarily suspended while the team investigates the issue. The instruments remain in good health.

Much of the press is using that lovely buzzword of bureaucrats, calling this a “glitch.” The goal of that word is to make the problem seem minor and no big deal.

It can’t be minor and no big deal however if the telescope shut down six days ago and remains out of service. This is not a “glitch.” This is a serious issue that is taking time to resolve.

Furthermore, I get more concerned when no further information is provided. As far as I can so far find, the quote above is the only information NASA has released. And that information is remarkably vague and uninformative.


I must unfortunately ask you for your financial support because I do not depend on ads and rely entirely on the generosity of readers to keep Behind the Black running. You can either make a one time donation for whatever amount you wish, or you sign up for a monthly subscription ranging from $2 to $15 through Paypal or $3 to $50 through Patreon.

Your support will allow me to continue covering science and culture as I have for the past twenty years, independent and free from any outside influence.

Your support is even more essential to me because I not only keep this site free from advertisements, I do not use the corrupt social media companies like Google, Twitter, and Facebook to promote my work. I depend wholly on the direct support of my readers.

You can provide that support to Behind The Black with a contribution via Patreon or PayPal. To use Patreon, go to my website there and pick one of five monthly subscription amounts, or by making a one-time donation. For PayPal click one of the following buttons:


Or with a subscription with regular donations from your Paypal or credit card account:


If Patreon or Paypal don't work for you, you can support Behind The Black directly by sending your donation by check, payable to Robert Zimmerman, to

Behind The Black
c/o Robert Zimmerman
P.O.Box 1262
Cortaro, AZ 85652

Or you can donate by using Zelle through your bank. You will need to give my name and email address (found at the bottom of the "About" page). The best part of this electronic option is that no fees will be deducted! What you donate will be what I receive.


  • George C

    Maybe they are busy working on that inevitable RFI they will need to publish in order to get proposals for the multitude of commercial options there will be for putting together a repair mission. A mini space station portable repair shack? Just enough to support a 2 man crew with multiple EVA over several days? So many ways to go when you have quick turn around reusable launch capability you can buy. I don’t worry long term about Hubble

  • It’s getting old. It’s going to die at some point. Perhaps this is that point.

  • Spectrum Shift

    Hubble has been a remarkable achievement. So have both Voyagers and so many more. Mission life expectations have been exceeded many times. Hat tip to all involved in creating these machines. Each will fail eventually, and letting go is never easy.

Readers: the rules for commenting!


No registration is required. I welcome all opinions, even those that strongly criticize my commentary.


However, name-calling and obscenities will not be tolerated. First time offenders who are new to the site will be warned. Second time offenders or first time offenders who have been here awhile will be suspended for a week. After that, I will ban you. Period.


Note also that first time commenters as well as any comment with more than one link will be placed in moderation for my approval. Be patient, I will get to it.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *