Capitalism in space: Jeff Bezos announced today that he is stepping down as Amazon CEO to focus his efforts more on his other political and space-related activities.
From the email he sent to Amazon employees:
As Exec Chair I will stay engaged in important Amazon initiatives but also have the time and energy I need to focus on the Day 1 Fund, the Bezos Earth Fund, Blue Origin, The Washington Post, and my other passions,” Bezos wrote. “I’ve never had more energy, and this isn’t about retiring. I’m super passionate about the impact I think these organizations can have
I think this quote from the story above however explains a great deal about Blue Origin in the past three years:
Bezos is said to devote one day a week to Blue Origin (reportedly, Wednesdays), plus at least $1 billion worth of the annual proceeds from his sales of Amazon shares. He’s presided over high-profile publicity events including the unveiling of the Blue Moon lunar lander. But when it comes to the day-to-day business, he handed that responsibility over to veteran aerospace executive Bob Smith, who became Blue Origin’s CEO in 2017.
It was around 2017 that the pace of Blue Origin’s effort seemed to slow to a crawl. It was also about that time that the company became dedicated to becoming a government contractor, doing whatever the government required even if it meant that development of their New Glenn rocket would slow (which it did).
Whether this action will increase Bezos’ participation with Blue Origin however is unclear. In the last year he has seemed more interested in leftist environmental causes and leftist politics. We shall have to wait and see.
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.
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