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I am now running my annual July fund-raising campaign to celebrate the twelfth anniversary of the establishment of Behind the Black. For many reasons, mostly political but partly ethical, I do not use Google, Facebook, Twitter. These companies practice corrupt business policies, while targeting conservative websites for censoring, facts repeatedly confirmed by news stories and by my sense that Facebook has taken action to prevent my readers from recommending Behind the Black to their friends.


Thus, I must have your direct support to keep this webpage alive. Not only does the money pay the bills, it gives me the freedom to speak honestly about science and culture, instead of being forced to write it as others demand.


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SpaceX seeking another $1.725 billion in investment capital

Capitalism in space: SpaceX has begun another private funding round, now asking for $1.725 billion in new investment capital.

The space venture is looking to bring in up to $1.725 billion in new capital, at a price of $70 per share, according to a company-wide email on Friday obtained by CNBC. Notably, SpaceX split its stock price 10-for-1 in February, which reduced the common stock to $56 a share – with the new valuation representing a 25% increase.

When added to past funding rounds — and including the $2.9 billion provided by NASA for turning Starship into a manned lunar lander — SpaceX will have raised approximately $12 billion total for building Starship.

Sounds like a lot, doesn’t it? Well, compared to what NASA has spent for its expendable SLS rocket (about $60 billion), $12 billion is chicken feed, especially because Starship will not be expendable, but entirely reusable.

If this contrast doesn’t illustrate the strength of freedom, competition, and private enterprise over government, I don’t know what does. Government, not caring about making a profit, produces a disposable rocket costing many billions, and takes two decades to do it. Private enterprise in comparison also wants a big rocket, but it also doesn’t look kindly on throwing away its investment with each launch. It instead insists the cost to build it be constrained, as well as the time to do it.

The result: Government accomplishes little and wastes a lot. Private enterprise makes it happen, and quickly for a reasonable cost.

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.


  • Edward

    Are all of those $12 billion just for Starship? My recollection (and your linked historical post) is that some of the monies raised in the past also went to Starlink.

    If this is the case, then Starship is an even better deal than SLS, and since so little of its development cost comes from the taxpayer, it is a good deal for the taxpayer, too.

  • Edward: My understanding is that in the initial fund-raising rounds much of the money went to Starlink. Since then the bulk, almost all, has been for Starship.

    Note however that the money is for SpaceX to use as it sees fit. Thus the money I suspect is fungible, and can be applied where needed. Since most of the cost right now is in Starship development, I believe that is where SpaceX is spending it.

    And yes, this makes Starship and even better deal than SLS.

  • Greg the Geologist

    Any chance SpaceX will go public in the near future?

  • wayne

    “The company is also conducting a secondary sale to company insiders and existing shareholders for up to $750 million in common stock.”

  • Jeff Wright

    Boeing is public-so I should hope not. Musk has Von Braun’s passion, Hughes fortune and Kelly Johnson’s instinct-is an exception. Jack Welsh the rule…the Santorum Accuweather Bill would have been an example of how privatization would have failed consumers-like free trade.

  • Edward

    Greg the Geologist asked: “Any chance SpaceX will go public in the near future?

    Probably not any time soon. A publicly traded company is required to act in the best interests of the owners (shareholders), which removes major risk taking as a strategy. Going to Mars is a major risk. Developing Starship could be considered a major risk. As a public company, the board of directors could be sued for having such risky policies.

    As a privately owned company, Elon Musk has a lot more say in how the company is run and in its short term and long term goals. Only as a private company can it be used as a means to get Musk to Mars before he dies. As a public company, that goal would be self-serving, not serving the interests of the other owners.

  • Star Bird

    When can we send the Democrats to the Spice Mines of Kessel?

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