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My February birthday fund-raising campaign for Behind the Black it now over. I sincerely and with deep gratitude thank all those who donated. Without your support I could not keep doing this, not so much because of the need for income to pay the bills, but because it tells me that there are people out there who want me to do this work. For those who did not contribute during the campaign, please consider adding your vote of support to Behind the Black, by giving either a one-time contribution or a regular subscription, in any one of the following ways:


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Putin dumps Rogozin

In a reshuffle of cabinet positions, Putin has replaced Dmitri Rogozin, putting a new man in charge of the Russian defense and space industry.

The new guy, Yuri Borisov, appears to have the title of Vice Prime Minister. I suspect Putin had grown tired of the continuing corruption and loss of market share under Rogozin’s watch during the past decade. I also suspect that Borisov will have little ability to change things. The problem isn’t the person in charge. The problem is Russia’s centralized top-down method of operations. It discourages competition and cost control, while providing no incentives for innovation and quality control.

Conscious Choice cover

Now available in hardback and paperback as well as ebook!


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.


Autographed printed copies are also available at discount directly from me (hardback $24.95; paperback $14.95; Shipping cost for either: $5.00). Just email me at zimmerman @ nasw dot org.


  • Dick Eagleson

    With every passing day, Russia dies a little more. Sometime in the next century there will be no more Russia. Few will miss it once it’s gone.

  • Localfluff

    @Dick Eagleson
    “Few will miss it once it’s gone.”
    Well, we who know Russia would miss it! Russia was a major contributor to Western culture and science during the 18th and 19th centuries, which were really very important times for discoveries of all kinds of things. Euler chose to go there, just to name one of the most prominent scientists who enjoyed the world leading Russian academies. St. Petersburg was for centuries up there among London, Paris, Berlin and Vienna when it came to attracting scientists and entrepreneurs and artists. Come on, yankees, you won the cold war. Have you still not heard that news? It’s over. And Russia isn’t Soviet. It is not your enemy. Russians are essential to our civilization. How else would for example Americans go to space today?

  • Edward

    Localfluff asked: “How else would for example Americans go to space today?

    We wouldn’t have cancelled the Space Shuttle program until later, which is why it lasted long enough to finish building ISS, and we would have been more serious about its replacements, Constellation and Commercial Crew.

  • Phill O

    Bob, you wrote: “I suspect Putin had grown tired of the continuing corruption and loss of market share under Rogozin’s watch during the past decade.”

    That is one perspective. There is another which is related to Putin’s own corruption. Any big deal in Russia does not happen without big money going to Putin’s account. Hence the collusion between him and the Clintons.

  • Dick Eagleson


    You make my point for me. Russia’s best days are well behind it. It’s current population is well below half what that of the Soviet Union was. And, once the troublemakers among the few million ethnic Russians still living in the “near abroad” are expelled back to their Motherland, Russia’s population will resume its post-Soviet norm of declining by roughly a million per annum.

    Unfortunately, Russia is our enemy. This wasn’t true during the Yeltsin years, but, under Putin, Russia has restored its long-standing sociopathic political culture and returned to its historic pattern of aggression. Russians are not essential to anyone’s civilization.

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