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.

ULA today stated that they have enough Russian engines in stock to complete the 36 launch U.S. military bulk buy.

ULA today stated that they have enough Russian engines in stock to complete the 36 launch U.S. military bulk buy.

Whether they will actually complete that bulk buy remains unknown.


I must unfortunately ask you for your financial support because I do not depend on ads and rely entirely on the generosity of readers to keep Behind the Black running. You can either make a one time donation for whatever amount you wish, or you sign up for a monthly subscription ranging from $2 to $15 through Paypal or $3 to $50 through Patreon.

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 not only keep this site free from advertisements, I do not use the corrupt social media companies like Google, Twitter, and Facebook to promote my work. 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

Or you can donate by using Zelle through your bank. You will need to give my name and email address (found at the bottom of the "About" page). The best part of this electronic option is that no fees will be deducted! What you donate will be what I receive.


  • Hi Bob,
    I looked for some link to email you directly, not finding one I decided to comment on this article, since it’s remotely related to my subject. I am a regular listener to John Batchelor, and thoroughly enjoy your commentary.

    I wanted to alert you to a space related contest – put on by and is called the Hackaday Prize. Entrants are invited to post projects of a future looking nature, and some metric of popularity and judging is to award one lucky entrant with a Trip To Space. You would know better than me who would be providing this prize, but apparently the winner won’t be riding a Russian engine. (there’s the remotely related part).

    I entered the contest, and they also asked that we spread the word around. They had some suggestions, but since I get my Space related news form you via John Batchelor (sometimes C2C) and Hackaday encourages innovation and an open, collaborative approach to development, I thought you might like to discuss the contest.

    I’m afraid my project is not a rocket engine that seems to be in demand all of a sudden, but it’s “out there”.

    Thanks again for the great commentary !


  • Hi Eric.

    Is there a link to this contest?

  • geoffc

    Do we know the breakdown of Atlas vs Delta boosters in that bulk buy? Assume half/half. I recall that several of the buys were for Delta4-Heavy’s which need 3 cores each. So assume 3 Heavys, that is 9 of the 36 cores. Assume the remaining 27 go half/half Delta/Atlas. They are saying they have 13 or 14 engines in stockpile? That seems pretty large to hold, just from a cost of storage perspective.

  • Kelly Starks

    From the Wikipedia list it looks like the Atlas-V has been launching 4-5 a year. So yeah 3.5 years would come out to that many.

    But why would they be expensive to hold?

  • I should have posted a direct link, sorry.

  • Interesting indeed. I have posted this on BtB. Thanks for the tip, and good luck!

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.