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.

Watch Rocket Lab launch and attempt to capture first stage with helicopter

I have embedded below the live stream of Rocket Lab’s launch today from New Zealand, scheduled for a 3:41 pm (Pacific) liftoff. The rocket carries 34 satellites for deployment.

More exciting however will be the attempt to recover the first stage. On this launch the Electron rocket’s first stage will control its descent using both thrusters and parachutes so that a helicopter can make the first attempt to snatch it out of the air before it hits the ocean.

If successful, Rocket Lab will then hopefully be able to reuse the first stage on a later launch.


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  • t-dub

    They caught it!

  • Willi

    RKLB is up half a buck to $8 a share in after market trading after after a claimed recovery of the rocket’s first stage. I say “claimed” because it wasn’t obvious from the video that capture was successful.

  • sippon_bourbon

    Update. They are saying they caught it, but the pilot had some different/odd load characteristics. For safety reasons he cut it loose near the vessel they had staged just for that reason.

    So. Partial success on the catch.

  • Tom

    Call me the Doubting Thomas but I have not yet seen the booster capture image or a positive announcement from Rocket Lab that they caught it. That they were very close is plain to see but no swinging booster images have crossed my screen yet. Does anyone have a link?


  • sippon_bourbon


    They announced it on the live feed. The camera angle was not great.

    At 52:450, if you put it in slow-mo, the yellow line is snagged. I am guessing the camera was pointing straight down.
    As the aircraft flew forward the drag pulled it back out of view.

    I too was watching hoping to catch it.

    Toward the end, before they went into the payload deployment sequence she says they he dropped it for safety.

    It is kind of funny. One of their earlier missions was called “Pics or it didn’t happen”.

  • t-dub

    The video just showed a brief glimpse of the capture hook and rope kinda starting to entangle with the first stage parachute line then it went out of view. They really need to up their game on the video they take. When the announcer said they had caught it I took her word for it, so if I was wrong I apologize. Too bad they had to cut it loose if that’s what happened. Hopefully some more video or picture evidence will come out soon to verify. If I didn’t have to go to the lab right now I would have more time to investigate this but an MRI machine awaits my presence.

  • t-dub noted: “They really need to up their game on the video they take.”

    I think this was a thread on the forum a few years ago. There is a developing field for space launch video. And those who know how to do it.

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