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.

OneWeb to use India’s rockets for satellite launches

Capitalism in space: OneWeb today announced that it has signed a deal with India to use its rockets for satellite launches.

Low Earth orbit (LEO) satellite communications company OneWeb has announced its plans to collaborate with the commercial arm of the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO), NewSpace India Limited (NSIL), to utilise indigenously built Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV) and the heavier Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle (GSLV-MkIII) as likely platforms to launch OneWeb’s satellites in India from next year.

This is not good news for either Russia or Arianespace. Up to now these entities pretty much were launching all of OneWeb’s satellites. Now some of that business is being shifted to India.

The deal was revealed at a press conference that announced the formation of an Indian commercial trade organization, the Indian Space Association (ISpA), that partnering with the government will use the government’s space assets to develop private commercial space resources.

The Indian Space Association (ISpA) will be headed by Jayant Patil, senior executive vice president – Defence, L&T-NxT as its chairman, and Bharti Airtel’s chief regulatory officer Rahul Vatts as its vice-chairman, while Lt Gen. A.K. Bhatt (Retd.) has been appointed as the director-general of the association.

Among its early members include Bharti Airtel, Larsen & Toubro, Nelco (Tata Group), OneWeb, Mapmyindia, Walchandnagar Industries and Ananth Technology Limited.

Bharti is the company that invested $500 million to bring OneWeb out of bankruptcy, partnering with the United Kingdom.

The key question is whether these private companies will invest in developing private rockets, or will simply continue to launch using ISRO’s rockets. Based on this announcement, it appears the latter, but since the whole goal here of the Modi government of India appears to be to encourage a private sector, this could soon change.


Please consider donating to Behind the Black, by giving either a one-time contribution or a regular subscription, as outlined in the tip jar below. 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 keep this site free from advertisements and do not participate in corrupt social media companies like Google, Twitter, and Facebook. 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


  • David M. Cook

    While they wait another year, Mr. Musk will be finishing his web of microsats & gathering all the customers!

  • David M. Cook: You should have read the article I linked to before commenting. OneWeb is not pausing its launches with this announcement. Another will occur later this week. It is simply announcing that it will buy some of its future launch services in India rather than rely solely on Arianespace and the Russians.

  • pzatchok

    Seems a little fishy.

    One web and India are getting a little chummy.

    India is investigation Musk about his satellite company correct? And now this deal?

  • Mark

    I wish future success for the Modi government of India in their quest to encourage private commercial space. I also hope India has business visionaries who understand that producing SpaceX quality rocketry is a whole different ballgame than managing and marketing outsourced call centers and software engineering.

  • Jeff Wright

    Apu sells the GSLVs on the first isle next to the vape pens and scratch-offs. Come again.

  • Mark: My experience is that Indians are up for the challenge. A lot of pride, and good reason for it.

  • Mark

    Blair – I sincerely hope for the emergence of the Indian equivalent of SpaceX, or at least a Rocket Lab. My point was that new commercial space companies (or new divisions of existing companies) need to build off existing core technical competencies. For example, Honda has announced its entry into commercial space, and likely has identified existing technologies and engineering talent that it can build off in its quest to develop reusable rockets that will be able to launch satellites.

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 *