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. And if you buy it from ebookit you don't support the big tech companies and I get a bigger cut much sooner.

September 30, 2020 Zimmerman/Batchelor podcast

Embedded below the fold in two parts.


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  • sippin_bourbon

    As of now, just after Noon, Eastern, both are still scheduled 27 minutes apart.
    But there is significant space between the two ranges, with two different target orbits, so I cannot see why they would be an issue.

    I personally would love to see back to back launches, but since this has been “scrub week” I am do not have high confidence.

  • William Robards

    Dear Sir, I’m a political conservative and an astronomy enthusiast. I’ve long been a fan of your work, initially thru the great John Batchelor Show chats you two have had over the years, and more recently I’ve followed your site, which I find to be well-grounded and interesting. Your views on COVID baffle me, and it is in this regard that I write. A reliable pundit in another field wrote today (translated from portuguese using GoogleTranslate): “Tuberculosis kills about 1.5 million annually; infectious diarrhea, 1.4 million; AIDS, 950 thousand; malaria, 620 thousand; common flu, 650 thousand. The WHO estimates up to one million more deaths from coronavirus before mass vaccination.” I resepctfully ask if you could briefly explain how it is that you feel justified in minimizing the impact of COVID on the world? Thank you.

  • William Robards: Thank you for the kind words. To answer your question:

    1. You misrepresent everything I have said about COVID-19 when you say that I am “minimizing” its “impact on the world.” Practically everything I have written has been to condemn the terrible impact it is having, but not because of the virus itself but because of the unwarranted panicky response.

    2. My opinion here is, like everything else I write and say, based on data, not models or hypothesis. From the beginning I focused on the actual data, which showed that this virus was not going to be the plague it has been labeled. The WHO estimate is based on weak models that have been consistently wrong.

    Do a search on Behind the Black for “COVID”. Start reading what I wrote, from the beginning (scroll to the bottom of the page and click on the last page in the sequence). You will see my approach, and you will see that the data shows the panic was unwarranted and the response was terrible, doing more harm than if we had done nothing.

    So far in the U.S. health authorities are claiming this disease has killed about 200,000 in its first season. Assuming that number is accurate (which it most certainly is not, based once again on the information and data we have), this still makes this epidemic less deadly than the 1969 Hong Kong flu, during its first season.

    That number however is not accurate. It is inflated because the government pays off hospitals for every death they label COVID, and there is amply evidence they are mislabeling a lot of deaths as COVID to get that money. For example, it appears this same season will be the smallest flu season ever, with the deaths only about 10-20% of past years. That drop is not realistic. Many were falsely assigned not to the flu but to COVID, for that federal cash.

    Note again that even if the 200,000 number is correct, it still makes this disease minor compared to the other illnesses you list.

    I want our government officials to create policy based on reason and data, not emotions and models. Sadly, they have done the latter almost routinely, and have done great harm because of it.

    I hope that helps to answer your question. I ask that before you respond, read my previous posts. You will learn a lot that I suspect you don’t know, but should know.

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