Virgin Galactic’s Surrender to Woke Culture: What should have been a great space flight was just a commercial for gay rights and Black Lives Matters

Traveling to Space turned out to be more about Gay Rights

For anyone who has read my work here going well back into the past, they will remember that I have been an advocate for Virgin Galactic’s desire to create space tourism as long as they have been trying.  It was a sad day in 2014 when the company had a crash, and a test pilot was killed, which set back the company for many years as regulatory burdens followed, and it looked for a while that the endeavor might never get off the ground.  Now I know people will say that I’m not sensitive to the test pilot’s family and that there are more important things in life than going to space.   Well, no, there isn’t.  I have in my new book The Gunfighter’s Guide to Business a whole chapter dedicated to the “Tyranny of Safety,” which covers the extraordinary costs of regulatory burdens that are imposed on all capitalist endeavors.  Pilots like that nice fellow who was killed understand these things.  If they die in the process of doing something big and bold, they are usually pretty good with it.  Especially if it’s something important like commercializing space.  If our civilization is ever going to get out of its static mode for which it currently suffers, we have to stop crying over every little death that happens to someone, whether it’s Covid or a test pilot for a space program.  Some things are worth dying over, and adventure and innovation are a few of them.  We must always keep in mind the big picture. 

However, Virgin Galactic, like a lot of modern companies with tremendous assets, has turned to Woke culture to appease the mobs of progressivism.  It’s an old story that many are just waking up to.  Corporations controlled by radical mobs and the CEO’s position to appease those mobs through risk mitigation because they desire to keep the squeaky wheels quiet are a real problem.  That type of mentality made viewing the Virgin Galactic space flight a miserable experience because of all the Woke sponsors.  Woke politics were on full display to keep the mud chucking liberals from losing their minds as civilization took bold steps toward space travel.  I say mud chuckers because I always think of the Woodstock music festival that took place a month after Neil Armstrong walked on the moon for reference.  It displays all too accurately the political divides we see today.   You essentially have half the nation who wants to cleave to mother earth and the safety of the home planet retreating to tribal primitivism.  Then, the other half want to explore and leave the nest to see what adventures are out there.  Those sentiments are reflected in our current political parties of Democrats and Republicans and represent the gulf between them unworkable.  There is no compromise when the general philosophies are that far apart. 

As a CEO and a generally liberal guy from England, Richard Branson is trying to bring all those soft types along for the ride, which ruins it for the rest of us.  Watching that space flight that day with the ridiculous NBC coverage with Stephen Colbert, one of the biggest Trump haters on planet earth as the host, was sickening.  And the stupid music.  The constant talk about gay rainbows and Black Lives Matters.  It was insulting, and they knew it.  They figure people like us on the conservative side of things, the people who still are willing to challenge death to develop space, who aren’t hiding under the covers due to Covid, will put up with such insults.  We aren’t the ones who will boycott Virgin if we don’t get our way.  But the gays, the BLM Marxists, and the other lunatics from the left will, so the programming was steered entirely to them.  What could have been a fun day of enjoying a major technical breakthrough ended up being a progressive gay rights parade and a reminder of everything that divides us.  Instead of space being a great unifier, it was used to illustrate the differences, which is a shame. 

The worst part was the Virgin Galactic sales pitch for why we should be going to space.  Their reasoning was to go up and look back at the earth and appreciate the need to protect it, turning the whole experience into a Green New Deal justification.  But reality says that humans are meant to escape earth and to migrate into space to survive as a species since there is a shelf life on earth that could blow at any moment.  We don’t go to space to save the earth.  We go to space to get away from earth before it’s not there anymore.  That is a devastating message for those who have built a religion out of earth worship and have replaced God with the goddess Mother Earth.  They picked a deity with a terminal shelf life, and if humans attach themselves to that shelf life, they will be destroyed with the planet whether it happens next month or several million years down the road.  People who have not come to grips with this issue have problems they need to fix psychologically.  They don’t have the right to doom the rest of us with their silly insecurities.  But rather than try to sell the advantages of space to them, Virgin Galactic and the media coverage pandered to them at the expense of the rest of us, and it was disgusting. 

Virgin Galactic and Richard Branson did a remarkable job of getting civilian space flight started commercially.  But what is sad is that, like many things these days, Woke culture is ruining everything with political opinions that are not only not mainstream but have the effect of a screaming child afraid of the dark.  Space travel is adventurous.  It’s dangerous.  It’s not for timid babies, and that’s all we saw from the coverage of Virgin Galactic’s great space triumph.  Some of that is to make space seem worthy to those types of people.  But it won’t work.  The only thing that will work is peer pressure when adventurous daredevils go to space first, then show all those timid types that space can be relatively safe.  Then they will go and won’t try to stand in the way of progress.  But you won’t win them over by talking about anal sex and waving rainbow flags.  They will go to space when it’s cool, and not before then.  Watering down an otherwise great corporation with Wokeness only weakened the message and took what could have been a big boom and turned it into Pee Wee’s Playhouse.  It ruined my decade of anticipation that was sold as a big firework that turned out to be a silly sparkler that went out as fast as ignited.  And it was a reminder of all the things I hate about progressivism and those people who cling to earth like some spoiled brat kid afraid of being away from their mommies longer than 2 minutes.  After all, liberalism is fear and adhering to safety and security so that the world doesn’t judge them too harshly for their timidity.  They use safety as the excuse to hide behind their fears as justification for their lack of effort and bravery.  And instead of showing them the way to adventure, Virgin Galactic appealed to their insecurities and allowed them to hide under the covers for a bit longer.

Rich Hoffman

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The Gunfighter’s Guide to Business

How to Fund Science: Get government out of the process so they can’t corrupt it

We need to get government out of funding science

If we have learned anything from the embarrassing Covid experience worldwide, it’s the validation that you do not want government funding to be the lifeline to the sciences.  Because when it is, such as what we saw with the NIH under Dr. Fauci, we have the all too tempting scenario where scientists will say anything to get that funding, including whatever governments want them to do.  For instance, to control elections, like made-up death totals, false models, bloviated cable news statements about the danger of a virus, the origin of a virus, and the long-term consequences of a virus to secure that funding.  What we have in modern times is not the best science that a rich country can buy; what we have is essentially the Institute of Science that they had in the famous book Atlas Shrugged.  A superficial branch of the government which attempts to quell people’s concerns as the government seeks to dominate every aspect of our lives.  And that is partly why it took me so long to write my latest book, The Gunfighter’s Guide to Business; it’s not because it takes a long time to write a book. Still, instead, it took a long time to look at our world and ask and answer the hard questions about existence, how money is made, and what kind of world we should build for this next century.  To do that, we have to surgically take out a cancer called progressivism that started to seep into America during the end of the 19th century and advanced to critical mass before the roaring 20s.  Most of us wouldn’t know any better because it happened slowly over time before many of us were even born.  So nobody even thinks to ask the question as we build our assumptions on failure after failure disguised as success.  Yet, I had the fortune recently to travel most of the United States, particularly in the Old West, and dig into our history and consider what a healthy government should look like instead of what we have.  Two fine examples of why the government should not be funding science emerged, but that private industry should, became evident. 

When Andrew Carnegie told the famous paleontologist Earl Douglas that he wanted something big to fill the great museum that the steel tycoon was building in Pittsburg, it set Douglas west into the Morrison Formation site to achieve that goal.  Carnegie didn’t know what Douglas would find.  He just knew what he needed and discovered the fabulous quarry that is still there to this day and continues to tell the world much of what we know about dinosaurs.  If it hadn’t been for Andrew Carnegie’s money, the giant apatosaurus that Douglas brought back to fill that museum would have never been found if the government had been funding that endeavor; likely, the giant sauropod would still be lost out there in that Utah mountaintop.  It took a prominent thinking capitalist like we used to make in America to give science a platform, which was the case for most of the early development of the science fields from archaeology, anthropology, paleontology, even astronomy.  Remember when the Obama administration told NASA that they should be studying Islamic contributions to science in the past instead of thinking of going to the stars yet again?  NASA listened and did what they were told because they wanted continued government funding.  See the problem? 

Teton National Park at Jenny Lake

Another example is the long story of making Teton National Park possible because essentially John D. Rockefeller started buying up land in Jackson Hole to make it possible for the government to set that area apart for a national park eventually.  He wanted that site to stay pristine and undeveloped.  In a video I show here from Instagram, you can see just how beautiful the Teton’s are.  The amenities at Jenny Lake, for instance, are incredible.  Now I could make a lot of arguments that Jackson Hole would have been better off developed and that I might want to enjoy Jenny Lake from a condo porch rather than a National Park.  But the concept of our National Parks is a good one.  It is good to see these places as they have always been, undeveloped.  It’s suitable for scientific study to discuss the socialism of these National Parks managed by the government another time.  After seeing the Tetons up close, it was good that Horace Albright was able to convince Rockefeller to spend a small fortune to buy the land then donate it to the government to create Teton National Park as a separate park from Yellowstone.  It was then signed into being by the great president Calvin Cooledge because it gave us what we see today.  But it took a personality like John D. Rockefeller to do it.  Without big-time capitalists operating with such large amounts of capital, places like the Teton National Park would have never happened. 

This idea that rich people are evil, or that they should “pay their fair share,” as determined by some socialist government viewpoint or the lazy and wretched in society who are naturally below-the-line thinkers, is the sure way to secure failure in all aspects of life.  In July of 2021, it is not an accident that three private industry tycoons of significant capital are going to space.  Richard Branson is about to personally fly to space himself to demonstrate the safety of his Virgin Galactic company.  Right after him, Jeff Bezos is flying into space with his Blue Origin rockets.  And Elon Musk is planning to get his Starship into an orbital test flight on a fast track to get back to the moon.  The government is not doing these things at NASA.  Government funding shapes what they do, which is why they have been stuck in a holding pattern of innovation for such a long time.  Private industry driven by great capital enterprises is how science is best developed.  It’s also how you get the best answers to complicated problems. We see the failures with Covid and how big pharma tied directly to FDA approvals have to play the government game if they want to exist, so they will do so whatever the government wants.  The key is to separate these problems, not to join them together as one entity.

That is the offerings in my book to identify these problems and separate them as they have before for a better approach for the future.  I could speak all day about the need for more understanding in science.  We are learning a great deal about our past that makes our assumptions here and now seem silly.  Which needs attention in just about all the sciences.  Truthfully, where we are today is embarrassing when comparing the rate of discovery to what it was when private funding drove most of the results, such as in the examples provided here.  But that is the case with all scientific fields.  Instead of intelligent scientists finding the freedom to discover, they are more like prostitutes catering to the desires of perverts in government. If the government had discovered flight and stuck its fat socialist ass in the development of it, we would never have gone from flying a kite to landing on the moon in just 70 years; we’d still be looking for the string for the kite in the garage of the Wright Brothers.  Government is slow, unmotivated, and essentially corrupt no matter where it is formed in the world.  They are needed to some extent for a free society to function well, but they must be as small as possible to stay out of the way of actual progress.  And we’ve done it well before.  Our task for the future is to look at those times where we did get it right and learn to remove the cancer of progressivism that is now threatening to kill us as patients.  That’s essentially the problem of our times.

Rich Hoffman

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The Gunfighter’s Guide to Business

Starship 15 Lands: Risk is the key to all things in life

I felt great pride and was delighted to see that SpaceX managed to land their Serial Number 15 at their Boca Chica facility in Texas this past week.  It was quite a week, on May 4th, “Star Wars Day,” SpaceX launched successfully more of their Starlink satellites only to have the Falcon rocket land on a small platform in the Atlantic Ocean, right on the X painted on the surface.  Then the next day, with all the public scrutiny hoping for failure toward the Starship program in general, SpaceX took a big-time chance on a cloudy day to launch Serial Number 15.  A failure would have been a big hit on an otherwise triumphant week for the company, and nobody blamed them.  Most companies wouldn’t have taken that risk, but that is why SpaceX is so good.  They are highly competent, they are constantly striving for tomorrow, and they aren’t afraid of risk.  Much of that comes from Elon Musk, a guy who works 80 to 100 hours a week, showing in his products—and his employees.  Even with his pot-smoking incident on that radio show a few years ago, he has won me over because he has guts; he has a great imagination. He has injected into his companies great youthful ambition.  He loves what he does, work is not a nuisance to him, and we are all benefiting as a result.  So, when that Starship Serial Number 15 nailed their landing on a Wednesday afternoon in May, as four astronauts had just splashed down from the International Space Station on Sunday in the middle of the night, then they had the Falcon rocket launch and triumphant return on Tuesday. The Starship launch on Wednesday, I was more elated not just at all the successes but in the bold ambition of it all. 

Maybe even more than all that, though, during the previous week, Elon Musk warned enthusiastically that once these Starships start going to Mars and the Moon, that there would be accidents, that people would die as a result of the various adventures that are yet to unfold.  That was an important thing to do especially given the target on the back of himself and his companies.  The media parasites are looking for any slight stumble to cripple Musk in perpetual court battles. Yet, Elon has managed to stay in front of that ankle-biter mentality with some focused warnings that indicate danger and even death is not the worst thing in the world.  Then I might add, which is implied in Musk’s position, which he could never afford to endorse, that stagnation and yielding to crippling governments are far worse than death.  When Musk said that the Moon missions and going out to Mars would be volunteers who would know what they were getting themselves into before climbing on a Starship to head into space, it is fair and should be understood.  The media representing the government’s control of society through fears of safety is far more dangerous than a stagnant society. That is a conversation we need to be having.  Its time.

All the great leaps of the human race involve risk.  Most great things that we do in life involve risk.  Even asking someone out on a date requires risk; the fear of rejection can be paralyzing.  In this age of online dating and matchmaking, even that is being taken away from us as human beings, the thrill of facing down risk and enjoying the fruits of the rewards when you hit it big is the primary driver of human behavior.  We can blame the government for overstepping its bounds in assuming that averting risk is their direct way of measuring the value of government.  From their point of view, sure, it seems logical.  Make it so people never die and protect them from everything, and the government thinks they can justify their existence.  But the payment for that incursion is that our society stagnates dramatically.  A safe world is a boring world.  Now we’ve managed to simulate danger in our society with amusement parks, zip lines all over the place, MMA sporting events.  We understand the need for risk and threat that is a part of all our lives.  But there is nothing like real risk in a rickety airplane that we built at the start of the Age of Aviation or NASCAR drivers who risk a great deal every weekend on national television.  NASCAR is a lot safer than it used to be.  Drivers can crash at over 200 MPH all the time and now walk away.  That is because the trail of tragedy that led to that safety record did have many people who died, specifically drivers like Dale Earnhardt.  Now, who thinks the old “Intimidator” would take back his life to avert that risk?  It’s only the weak people who are timid in the world who believe in such a way that they would put safety over risk.  Risk is what drives the world forward and makes everything better.

Back in the day, every space launch from NASA would be broadcast on live television.  People understood the risk, and they wanted to watch the space race.  But when NASA did have an accident here and there, the federal government would lockdown on the safety aspects and kill the momentum of innovation needed to advance us into the stars.  SpaceX was barely covered with all the mentioned activities just over this past week because people have become used to the excellent safety record that SpaceX has.  But there will be accidents; people will get hurt.  People will die eventually.  Yet that doesn’t mean we should stop doing anything risky.  People die every day in car accidents, and we do not stop driving cars.  We deal with the risk because we value the benefits.  Now the government would love to get rid of cars and put us all on public transit where they can manage the risk by going 20 MPH and stopping at all railroad crossings.  But that is boring and not good for our lives.  It might be good for the government to measure things, but it’s not suitable for the species of the human race.  We need risk, we need danger, and we need adventure.  We must push ourselves in challenging ways, and we must strive to succeed even if the blood of failure has been spilled on us.        

Anyway, a big congratulations to SpaceX for such a fantastic week; significant risks were taken. Still, the hard work and thousands of important decisions that went into these programs certainly paid off, even if most people don’t understand the relevance.  They will eventually.  Watching Starship 15 stick that landing was a marvelous thing to see.  The door to the future was kicked open, and I liked the glimpse of what I saw on the other side.  It was breathtaking to watch. It’s been a long time since I was that happy to see someone else accomplish something, but that’s what I felt for the entire SpaceX team.  And Elon Musk, a billionaire who has never lost his way, sets the example of what hard work looks like by often sleeping on a couch in the middle of the shop floor of his companies because he doesn’t even have an office.  The result shows in all these successes, and I am proud to be in a culture that shares space with him.  I share with him the same work hours, and there is no way to cheat the system.  And it’s good to see other people working hard and always finding the positives no matter how challenging the problems are. 

Cliffhanger the Overmanwarrior


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Asking Questions: Elon Musk understands that answers are less important

This interview shown below with Elon Musk and the very popular YouTube Channel ‘Everyday Astronaut’ was remarkable in many ways, so it is worth sharing here for those who don’t find themselves exposed to these kinds of things. I thought both participants in this interview were covering some very extraordinary aspects of our current culture and how we are getting from here to there so to speak. For me, I think the concept and pace of engineering that is going on at SpaceX regarding the Starship MK1 is truly transitory for our civilization and is one of the most important things going on in the world today. I’m a huge fan of the work SpaceX is doing on many levels, and it didn’t surprise me to learn that Elon Musk’s primary philosophical motivation is science fiction, especially the work of Douglas Adams in his pinnacle work, The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy. There is of course a little Star Wars sprinkled in for good effect behind the scenes making this interview unusual in the boyish optimism displayed that is unheard of in government driven attempts at space travel and for one main reason, the understanding that its not always the answers we seek, but the question.

For me the work of Joseph Campbell has always been what has unlocked the ceiling of intellectual potential. It doesn’t matter what does it for an individual, it could be Douglas Adams, George Lucas or Joseph Campbell, what matters is that the creative work does something to unlock the limits of human understanding by provoking the questions that need to be asked, instead of always focusing on the answer. Answers to questions are relative to the interpretations of those responding. What matters more than anything no matter what the endeavor is in life is in discovering the questions that then need answers, otherwise the results are always ambiguous. For this Starship MK1 where conventional avionic development would favor composite construction, due to a lack of autoclave availability in such sizes and not wanting to wait for one to be built, SpaceX moved on to this stainless steel design, which is brilliant not just esthetically, but in function. It is an excellent example of how asking the right questions can change everything and bring to life the benefits of invention.

And watching Elon Musk give that interview was a true delight, not in that it was a stuffy discussion about how smart all the engineers are and how dangerous space flight can be, but it was beholding the energy of a child who just wanted to play with new toys for the sake of discovering new questions to ask where smart people could relish in answering those ponderances. To do something for the joy of it that changes our perception of reality is quite an important thing to do and it all starts with the mechanisms of discovering the questions that need answers, otherwise answers without questions have no relevancy. It is the question that matters more than the answer.

This is certainly the case with all leadership functions, and when people wonder why CEOs or presidents of companies are so important to growth and prosperity it is for this basic function. A company can hire hundreds if not thousands of people to answer questions, but often it is only a small number of leadership who knows how to ask questions drawn out from obscurity to set people on a pace to discover an answer. If the questions are never asked, then what work is there for people to do to resolve it? So the creative aspect of something like building this new Starship is that Elon Musk thought to ask the questions of, “why can’t we make it out of stainless steel.” “Why can’t we fly it to Mars.” “Why can’t we refuel in space?” “Why, why, why.”

When humans stop asking questions is when they cease to become effective in their roles, and their intellectual decline is not long behind. Children naturally ask lots of questions, but we are all taught that at some point, maturity means you have the answers and questions are less and less asked—which is the state of decline for any culture. Seeing Elon Musk and his engineers at SpaceX asking lots of questions that often outpace what reporters even think of considering was refreshing because its not something we see much of these days unless you happen to be at a SpaceX media event, or a gathering of geeks and freaks at a local comic con. The optimism of those events is not in the answers, but in asking about the possibilities—the what if scenarios, even in science fiction ponderances. For Musk ‘The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy’ inspired him to ask lots of questions and the results of those pursuits is in the creation of very wonderful things, like the Starship MK1 complete with its 6 Raptor engines carried to orbit by 37 others in the Super Heavy booster powered by cryogenic methane and liquid oxygen.

Innovation is always directly connected to having the ability to ask questions and to provoke a quest for answers, and that is the reason that everyone in the world is not equipped to be a leader at the level of a CEO. Its not the work that is important, the spreadsheets and presentations that are often associated with such roles, it’s in the ability to ask what if questions and to set the mind of others on fire seeking answers. A society without questions is one that is on the decline victimized by their own stagnation. And to see Elon Musk so alive with enthusiasm the way a seven-year-old might be is refreshing because we can all see the benefit. Musk when presented with a problem such as, “sir, we can’t find an autoclave anywhere in the world where we can build the fuselage out of composites.” “Well, what other material can we make it out of?” Thus, we have a question that unleashes a new technology and means to build very large craft to enter into space. Otherwise, in less innovative companies driven by less ambitious leaders, the engineering staff would have forced the project to remain on a path to stay within the confines of the accepted practices for aviation, which would be composite construction as someone builds an autoclave of the proper size.

Perhaps more important than asking the right questions is the ability to move quickly, and in that regard, that too comes from the ability to ask questions to keep everyone’s feet moving. Entering market share while imaginations are still hot is more important than all other aspects of development and the pace of engineering at SpaceX is remarkable because the employees are allowed to ask lots of questions and to drive innovation toward the proper answer for questions that are pursued beyond relativity, but in the abstract rules of science which are not discovered by any other means but in asking questions. The more questions the better. And when questions are asked, we as human beings come alive with that same excitement that we had as children discovering things for the first time, and that is what will ultimately save us. Its not the science we discover in the process, but in the quality of the questions we think to ask no matter what the means is in discovering which questions to ask as adventure demands the contemplation of a thinking species.

Rich Hoffman

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Steampunk and the Future of Technology

My readers here might have noticed my new mask which is kind of Steampunkish and likely wondered what the deal with it was. Well, I was shopping with my family in the famous Charleston City Market which has been around since 1804. One of the booths had kind of a Steampunk theme which my kids are into. I haven’t paid much attention to the movement because to me it represented a time that never occurred and was rooted in “what ifs” instead of factual observation and an understanding of history. Steampunk however has turned out to be very aligned with what I want to do with my new book, The Gunfighter’s Guide to Business so through buying this mask it gave me several good ideas to build off of, so I started using it on my social media platforms because I think its pretty cool.

Death and life have very much been a part of my thinking lately, I’ve had some sick family, my own aging process and all this constant news about artificial intelligence taking over the human race–becoming actually a terminator type of conflict that seems much more possible today than it did when that popular movie first came out—has been on my mind. The mask to me is a clear indication that we can enhance our own flesh now, and the future looks to be even more of a case for it. So even when our flesh dies of natural causes we can continue to live on through various mechanical means, and this new mask of mind makes me think of those potentials and consequences, so I was very excited to get it. And in talking with my kids about Steampunk as an art movement that’s when it became clear that my argument for going back into the Wild West period to look at our value systems, which is key to my own efforts, was the same in bridging those values with the technology of the future.

As kind of a prerequisite to buying that mask my wife and I spent some time in Gatlinburg, Tennessee looking at grandfather clocks, which have always been on my radar. There is a very nice store on the main strip there that we have always gone in and contemplated. Even though these days a digital display clock is often better and far, far cheaper, there has always been a charm for me in the craftsmanship that goes into a grandfather clock that I crave. And at the height of the Victorian era for which the Wild West period was a part of that is why the stylized outfits and fonts looked the way they did. It was a very exciting time where guns became very reliable and could be used to shape a culture as the Victorian designs immigrated from Europe and moved with the expanding train system into the wild frontier of western expansion. These days many of our smartest people, people who enjoy thinking, are finding that they enjoy the values of that period and would like to see a return to those values. But we are all on the technological frontier of so many other positive elements that we must find a way to bridge these values, which is how Steampunk came to be as an art form.

Its not at all a mainstream thing yet, or if it ever will be. But one thing is quite clear, it was mainstream enough to have that mask I bought displayed at the very popular Charleston City Market and people walking by all stopped to look at the crafts displayed at that booth, so there is some very obvious curiosity by most people about this type of art, whether they understand it consciously or not. I suspect that subconsciously most people are thinking the same thing, they don’t want to lose themselves as individuals in the technology of the future, and they very much want to be in command of that relationship. We don’t want to lose our lives to technology, but rather want to see humans continue to set the agenda—but one way or the other, tech is here, and we must find our way with it. So suddenly, I’m quite a fan of Steampunk.

This mask is appropriate for me because honestly, I have no intentions of every dying. Now the nature of life may change, but my essence I suspect will live on in various forms forever, and as I get older, I am quite open into whatever enhancements I need to utilize to continue enjoying life. After all think about it, I have written so much that it will float around in cyberspace or whatever form of that space exists well into the future, that it will likely go on forever as defined by universal life spans. Even if all that is left is a skull, I will get all I can out of life because that is how I approach these kinds of things. While I do advocate for the values of the past, of the Victorian era Wild West values of pure capitalism and frontier justice, I think very much that those values not only work here on earth, but will work as we colonize space whether it is the moon, Mars or the moons of Jupiter. If I could live 20,000 years to see all those advancements happen or to help them along, I’ll do it whether the form is a living entity, legacy memories, or as a variation of that mask, a biological entity more machine than traditional life that exists without losing the basics of humanity.

Coming back from Charleston I had been listening to Rush Limbaugh while staying in the very nice Mt. Pleasant area and looking at all the sites and thinking about how Google was being thought of as evil, and that Facebook was capturing so much of us to build an artificial intelligence that it was forcing tough political and economic decisions for the future. For me the solution was in Steampunk, or at least the first doors to solving those complex problems and that mask gave me a reference point. But when it came time to come back home and I punched in my address to my Google Map app on my phone it stated at 5:30 AM in the morning that I would arrive back at my home in 10 hrs. and 16 minutes. Thinking about Rush Limbaugh’s radio shows and some by Alex Jones that I had been listening to online when everyone else had gone to bed I wanted to try an experiment knowing that Google had a profile of my habits that it had been collecting about me for many years. I decided to leave my phone plugged in so that I wouldn’t reset my destination forcing Google to recalculate my destination time.

On the way home I traveled with one of my daughters, her kids and my wife so there were lots of variables. We didn’t leave at 5:30 but the time really didn’t change from when we actually did so the Google Maps had figured out all our stops, our pace of driving and the traffic conditions from Mt Pleasant to our home address and all the surprises that can happen along the way. Outside of Columbia, South Carolina we stopped at a Cracker Barrel for breakfast. At the North Carolina line we switched around some drivers. Just outside of Ashville we stopped to let the kids use the restroom. In the heart of the mountains near the tunnels just before the Tennessee border we stopped to get some more food. In Knoxville we stopped to get more gas. Ahead of Jellico Mountain we stopped by McDonalds just to stretch and get a snack. On the other side of the mountain from Jellico to London, KY we had lots of single lane traffic and some serious traffic delays. We pulled off the highway to use the restroom yet again and we fiddled around for an additional 15 minutes because we were all tired of driving and didn’t want to rush only to sit in traffic again. We stopped just north of Lexington just to stretch because we were tired and wanted to get home but were getting impatient. Then we hit traffic in Florence that lasted all the way through the city of Cincinnati. By the time we got to our driveway the time on the trip back was 10 hrs. and 17 minutes. One minute longer than Google Maps had predicted originally, which I thought was astonishing.

Technology can be our friends or our enemies, what it becomes will largely be up to the values we bring to it. I for one plan to embrace it with an eye toward longevity and accomplishing more in a lifetime than typical biological existence would otherwise allow. And even the sad stories of family sicknesses prove that technology is on the cusp of solving many of those problems. But then what? Well, that is up to us to figure out, and that is my focus in helping to shape. And for me, that is a very exciting prospect and what I think about when I see that new mask found at the Charleston City Market. To me its not a scary thing, but something that will help us live beyond the terminal existence of yesteryear, but if we hold the values from the past that worked best and combined them with the future, we wouldn’t just get Steampunk art, but perhaps a new reality that matches what Jesus said when he walked the earth, “heaven is all around us, only men do not see it.” Well, maybe its time that we start looking at it.

Rich Hoffman

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Why the World Needs a Space Force: Thinking back to the moon landing and the vile music festival of Woodstock


It is a little surprising that there is so much mockery toward the Trump administration over the new fifth branch of the armed forces they are proposing called the Space Force. We’ve known and talked about it for a long time on this site and many others that progressives are actually a regressive group of people who desire with everything in their being to follow the human trajectory of the Vico cycle and to return to a world of theocracy, as mankind has done over and over again throughout history for what looks like many hundreds of thousands of years. That is the nature of politics, to control mankind in a sort of passive role under the rule of our planet and its conditions. Modern progressives in order to sell their warped desire to control all human effort simply can’t have people leaving earth and settling in space because once that happens they lose power and influence over the direction of all achievement. Out the window go the carbon credits, the taxing of farts from people and animals, the emissions of cars and capitalism, and the development of suburbia. By moving into space and settling on massive space stations as exotic metal minors on the moon, around Venus and Mars, the moons of Jupiter the concern of over populating the earth goes away. Humans can have all the babies they want, they can even double or triple their intellectual power with the use of artificial intelligence, all the concerns of today regarding human influence over that goddess mother earth go away. So why are liberals so against Trump’s Space Force and why is it so mocked?

The Trump administration had a nice little fundraiser where they presented several concept drawings for the new Space Force and I picked the design that was mostly red that looked a lot like the NASA emblem. As I made the selection I was proud to do it because it felt like a step forward that should have happened many years ago. The point of a blog like this as opposed to writing for a magazine or a newspaper is that I can bring my personal experiences into focus to share with readers which makes it an unusual platform if you are the kind of person with a lot to say. That happens to be an excellent description for my particular lifestyle as I cover a lot of topics that I am personally interested in, and even professionally involved. I was born one year before the moon landing so I’ve watched this thing come and go in strange ways. I was in high school as the space shuttle program was the envy of the world and I watched three eight-year presidents reduce NASA to an Islamic study group prior to the Trump administration. I’m close to aerospace in many aspects, its something I’ve always enjoyed and wanted to help advance in any way possible because I see it as the next great frontier. As I share often my favorite period of American history was the westward expansion into the American west during the gold rush period which created massive wealth for a new nation and I see the space age as a new period with the same level of potential, actually proportionally greater.

Just this past week my wife and I got a call about a hot new condo property coming available at Cape Canaveral where our family has some vested interest in providing housing to the great engineers who come and go from assignments at the Cape. Business was good through the late 80s and 90s but dropped off considerably during the second term of the Bush administration and was utterly destroyed during the Obama years where that socialist president pointed NASA to Russia and told them that if they wanted to study space, then ride with the Russians. No more Space Shuttles, and nothing was coming after. Of course, from the investment side of things you can’t plop down a half million dollars on a condo that no engineers are going to use because there’s no work at the Cape. But for this latest proposal it looks attractive because Space X has moved in and is routinely firing off rockets into space putting a lot of people to work with their fabulous Falcon 9 which just launched again the other night. And with the Trump administration getting behind NASA once again, things are looking good again at the Kennedy Space Center, and they should always have. If America is going to climb out from under the massive debt that Trump inherited of over 20 trillion dollars that money has to come out of new markets and revenue streams. Space is where that revenue is at, and the United States needs to be in charge of it, for the sake of the entire world. Seeing the situation up close it has been sad, but now the entire market is looking better and the next great frontier is there for us to enjoy as the next great adventure.

Talking about the moon landing which occurred on July 20th 1969, I actually remember it. I was just over one year old. I have memories of it and before which is unusual, for being so young but it was hot. We didn’t have air conditioning and I was sweating but I remember the day being hot and very sunny outside and the sounds of the television as the radio broadcasts came back from the moon and my mom talking about what an important day it was. Then I remembered the news reports a month later coming from the music festival in Woodstock on August 15th. It was ugly to me, to see so many people stuck together in the mud of a field listing to music that I have never liked—depressing loser music. As I became older I was able to think about those two events often and came to understand them as two choices of American direction. Woodstock was the progressive answer to the moon landing. The stuffy engineers in their suit and ties at NASA versus the naked hippies and drug induced losers of Woodstock. One group was saying yes to new challenges of human endeavor, the other was saying no, let’s go back to being a tribe of hunter and gathers erecting rocks to the gods and having sex in front of each other covered in mud while our language is reduced to tribal chants. The same debate rages today, those descendants of Woodstock are now running universities, magazines and television stations and are the foundation of progressive politics while aerospace development has been continually ridiculed by them in what we call the Mainstream Media. Those same stuffy suits still desire to explore what’s beyond earth like a teenager wanting to move out of their parent’s house and start of life on their own.

By acknowledging a Space Force progressives know there will never be any going back because government in the context of American history never gets smaller, it only grows and if that growth is to encompass the level of personal freedom that conservatives demand, then the influence of American reach must grow to justify that potential. There is of course the addition of space tourism that is a market happening this year as well as many advanced satellites that are important to our culture that need protection, so a Space Force now only makes sense to meet the needs of a growing civilization. Yet people like Al Gore, and Michael Moore, and the greenie weenie Democrats truly do desire to turn off the minds of human beings with drug use, which is why they support the legalization of pot, and to have another music festival like a bunch of cannibals dancing around a rock in the mud praying to the gods to make it rain so that they can grow food. Today the god is no longer some Celtic tyrant, or Roman myth, but is the earth itself. But science says that the earth won’t be around much longer anyway. It’s only a matter of time before Yellowstone’s massive volcano erupts destroying much of North America, or something hits earth from space, or the sun grows to a size that eventually swallows our entire planet to a fiery cataclysm. The human race has a choice to survive and move into space to escape that fate, and we should take it. And we will need a Space Force to protect that advancement for the sake of our species. And I picked the red emblem as my vote for the patch that those new members of the military should wear while doing it.

Rich Hoffman

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The Space Race is Just Beginning: As the Space Shuttles End.

Darryl Parks of 700 WLW hit on something sensitive with me on his March 10, 2011 show. He was reminiscing about the recent Space Shuttle landing with just two more shuttle missions to go. Listen to that broadcast here.

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, I think NASA in Florida and Epcot Center also in Florida are two of my favorite places on Earth. I am very supportive of massive cuts to the federal budget. But of all the programs that I think the government has done right it’s the work done at NASA that is the best. For NASA, I do not regret the tax money spent at all. It gives me a tremendous amount of pride to walk the NASA facility.

The work done at NASA directly propels our science and does create jobs making America much of what it has been regarding a technological powerhouse in the world marketplace. And it is a sign of the times that funding to our space work was one of the first things cut, well before the entitlement culture, which is a terrible shame. It will be a sad day when over 6,000 NASA employees are laid-off in the Florida facility and I will be deeply touched to watch one of the next two space shuttles land at Wright Patterson Air Force Base within the next couple of months.

So the obvious question that Darryl asks, and I’m asking and tens of thousands of aviation enthusiasts are asking is, “What’s next? What’s the plan?”

Well, the government is getting out of the space business and is turning it over to the private sector, which is the same thing many of us that are education reformers want to see happen with education regarding School Choice. I believe that once the government is out of the space business, private industry will suddenly find the chains cut and a technological leap will ensue.

So to give hope to that possibility read the below article from www.Space.com. This is the future, like School Choice is the future of education. While I am sad to see the great organization of NASA coming to an end as we know it, I am excited to see the unlimited possibilities that the private sector can unleash upon our civilization.

It looks to be a very exciting time. Many of the jobs at NASA should find work within the private industry within the next few years. It may not be as secure as the employment they had at NASA, but it will be filled with adventure!

Link for the below article: http://www.space.com/10548-private-spaceflight-ready-2011.html

The private space industry has long been viewed as fledgling. But this once-pejorative term has taken on new meaning this year, as a roster of successes and fast-paced growth throughout 2010 suggests private spaceflight is ready to take off in 2011.

This year saw the very first launch of commercial space company SpaceX’s Falcon 9 booster, and later the first liftoff of the firm’s Dragon spacecraft, which launched atop a Falcon 9 to Earth orbit and then was recovered from the Pacific Ocean. Another company, Virgin Galactic, achieved some major milestones, including the first glide test of its suborbital spaceliner, SpaceShipTwo. [Gallery: First Solo Flight of SpaceShipTwo]
Multiple private-sector space firms are moving into full power, going well beyond powerpoints and hand-waving. Still, the coming year, according to experts and analysts contacted by SPACE.com, is likely to feature battles between “same old space” and the ascension of “new space.”
Commercial landscape
“The space industry has never seen such a rich and varied commercial landscape,” said Carissa Bryce Christensen, managing partner of consulting firm The Tauri Group in Alexandria, Va. “New markets are emerging and established ones are changing.”
Christensen said that entrepreneurs are testing new launch and on-orbit capabilities in the real world, trying to move beyond development and demonstration and into sustainable, profitable operation. Large firms are changing their game plans in response.
“The successes and setbacks of 2011 are going to make it the most interesting year in the history of commercial space,” Christensen predicted.

Commercial space is finally coming into its own, and 2011 represents a year of enormous potential for this developing industry, said David Livingston, founder and host of the radio/Internet talk show “The Space Show.”

“The key will be to systematically move forward, building success upon success,” Livingston said. “I believe the coming year will reward patience, achievable goals, business fundamentals, reasonable business risks and a safety mindset.”
In terms of trends for the space industry, Livingston foresees a move away from big government programs in favor of economically managed and leaner commercial space ventures and projects.

“I believe this trend will continue through 2011 and beyond. That said, I do not think our space program should be one or the other, government or private,” Livingston said.”I believe we can now, more than ever, effectively create public/private partnerships to guide us into space and our future.”
Squarely in the spotlight

The scheduled retirement of NASA’s three-orbiter space shuttle fleet next year will also likely affect the landscape.
“I think the environment for 2011, although much improved from the religious war in 2010, will still see continued debate about the future direction of NASA with shuttle retirement,” said Brett Alexander, president of the Commercial Spaceflight Federation, an industry group that includes commercial spaceflight developers, operators, spaceports, suppliers and service providers.

Alexander said he thinks commercial space will be “squarely in the spotlight” with an expected ramp-up of both suborbital flight testing and multiple orbital launches and re-entries under NASA’s Commercial Orbital Transportation Services (COTS) partnership agreements with U.S. industry.

NASA’s Commercial Crew and Cargo Program is investing financial and technical resources to stimulate efforts within the private sector to develop and demonstrate safe, reliable and cost-effective space transportation capabilities.
“So, with steady progress on the technical front, it should help to solidify NASA’s new direction to develop commercial capabilities,” Alexander said. Battleground “2010 was the year that war broke out between commercial and cost-plus space,” observed Jim Muncy, president and founder of PoliSpace, an independent space policy consultancy based in Alexandria, Va.

“A rational White House, which nobody can accuse of having an ideological bias in favor of commercial business and privatization, decided that the nation couldn’t do much, let alone everything, the ‘traditional’ way,” Muncy said. “To actually use the International Space Station and explore space, the private sector needed to play a greater role in both.”

Muncy said that as nasty and counterintuitive as the long debate of 2010 was, next year — especially in the context of the new Congress, which has vowed to cut government spending — will see “the rubber hit the road” in several fronts of this war.

For 2011, Muncy forecasts:
• At least two companies that operate suborbital reusable launch vehicles will fly science payloads for NASA, and piloted vehicles will have their first flight tests.
• A SpaceX Dragon will carry a mammal to low Earth orbit and possibly to the International Space Station.
• The effort to build a commercial crew spacecraft will move forward, while overall budget pressure on NASA will slow down Florida Senator Bill Nelson’s grand compromise (which, among other things, gave money to commercial companies and NASA to develop and build new rockets).
• The Commercial Space Launch Amendment Act’s “informed consent” regime for Federal Aviation Administration regulation of commercial human spaceflight will clash with some politicians’ desire to kill commercial crew efforts.
• The fight over human-rating of commercial crew will get heated, as will a scrap for control over this rating between NASA’s Johnson Space Center and the agency’s Kennedy Space Center.
“Not a prediction but a hope,” Muncy said, is that “Republicans will remember they like the private sector and stop mindlessly bashing commercial.”
Fiscal meltdown

Rand Simberg, a space policy and technology consultant and a former aerospace engineer, isn’t optimistic that Republicans will get fully behind commercial space.

“Despite the growing confidence in the ability of the commercial sector to do human spaceflight, the incoming Republicans may continue to wage war on the new NASA direction, in opposition to their usual stated principles of free enterprise and competition, for no reason other than it came from a weakened Obama White House,” Simberg said.
Overall, next year “may be the year that business-as-usual collides with budgetary reality,” he predicted.

Simberg said that “even the most pork-devoted politicians will have to recognize that the only way for NASA to have a viable human spaceflight program going forward is to rely on fixed-price launch contracts from new, more cost-effective providers for the now-mundane task of simply getting astronauts to orbit and back.”

On the suborbital front, Simberg said that 2011 may be the year that regular flights of fully reusable vehicles — both horizontal- and vertical-landing — will take off.

That being the case, Simberg added, such suborbital flights “will start to develop the experience in high-tempo launch operations that will inform the eventual development of cost-effective space transport all the way to orbit.”
Availability and schedule

Likely to be a nexus of private sector space action is Spaceport America, now under construction near Truth or Consequences, New Mexico.

Virgin Galactic will run commercial operations from Spaceport America, with billionaire founder Sir Richard Branson recently setting his sights beyond suborbital passenger takeoffs.

“Virgin Galactic has shown in the past few years how private sector investment and innovation can lead to a rapid transformation of stagnant technologies,” Branson said. “We are now very close to making the dream of suborbital space a reality for thousands of people at a cost and level of safety unimaginable even in the recent past.

“We know that many of those same people, including myself, would also love to take an orbital space trip in the future,” Branson added, “so we are putting our weight behind new technologies that could deliver that safely whilst driving down the enormous current costs of manned orbital flight by millions of dollars.”

Earlier this month, Branson revealed that Virgin Galactic will be supporting work done by Sierra Nevada Space Systems (SNC) and Orbital Sciences Corporation (OSC) on commercial space vehicles for NASA’s Commercial Crew Development Program.
Both SNC and OSC are pursuing vehicle designs featuring reusable lifting-wing bodies and runway landings, which Virgin Galactic sees as possibly revolutionizing orbital space flight.

Rick Homans, executive director of the New Mexico Spaceport Authority, said that the pace of activity continues to pick up throughout the industry — and Spaceport America is no exception.

“In 2011, we expect to be in the midst of our pre-operations phase — hiring contractors, developing policies and procedures and conducting all kinds of tests and drills to ensure we are ready to go operational in 2012,” Homans said.
Homans said that from the inquiries they have received, he anticipates Spaceport America’s vertical launch area should be very busy in 2011. Other companies such as UP Aerospace, Armadillo and other operators have already inquired about availability and schedule, he added.

“I see 2011 as the year to get ready for 2012, when I predict we will have our first commercial launches from Spaceport America,” Homans said.
• Gallery: Photos of the Dragon Space Capsule, Dragon Video
• Top 10 Private Spaceships Becoming Reality
• Photos: SpaceShipTwo’s First Solo Test Flight, Video of the Flight
Leonard David has been reporting on the space industry for more than five decades. He is past editor-in-chief of the National Space Society’s Ad Astra and Space World magazines and has written for SPACE.com since 1999.

_____________________________________________________________________

For those of us that want to see this grand adventure take place, we must support the commercialization of space with the same enthusiasm that we are pushing government budget controls and education reform, because the future is in front of us, if only we can muster the courage to embrace it.

Now, listen to Richard Branson talk about Virgin Galactic.

Rich Hoffman

https://overmanwarrior.wordpress.com/2010/12/04/ten-rules-to-live-by/
http://twitter.com/#!/overmanwarrior
www.overmanwarrior.com

The Majestic Adventure of Space

A sure way to clear your mind is to think from high places. Two of my favorite places on planet earth are the Kennedy Space Center and the Epcot Center because both of those places are about ideas, and perspective.

That’s why this video is a thing of beauty. It is a fine example of the best and brightest that the human mind has yet produced.

The following video is a collection of Space Shuttle launches from 1981 to 2010. I first fell in love with the shuttle program when I was able to stand in one at the Kennedy Space Center. And I will never forget the 3D Imax film they showed at the Center of a shuttle docking with the International Space Station. This video is of the same caliber and is a true thing of marvel.

And here is a camera view from the booster rockets during launch and decent when ejected after the stage 1 process. Enjoy the ride to space and back to the Atlantic Ocean again. When you see the splash down, the rockets will be approximately 150 miles northeast of the Kennedy Space Center.

Once in space there are many questions that transcend the things we think are important back on earth. Perspective is relative. The definitions of what we consider to be time changes subtly at first, then radically.

Ironically, we discover when studying the very large reaches of space that it is the very, very small that affects everything we experience.

Rich Hoffman
http://twitter.com/#!/overmanwarrior
www.overmanwarrior.com