Bob Zubrin at The New Atlantis On That Space Renaissance-To The Moon?

Dear reader, there’s a competition going on, extending to the poles and into space, for raw materials, mineral wealth and transit routes.

This competition will surely have some consequences in the current geopolitical realm (Cuba, Ukraine, Africa, The South China Sea) where there’s quite a bit of Russian and Chinese recalcitrance in the face of Western attempts at order.

Europe’s low birth-rates and many flagging economies (including the top-heavy trade union), aren’t looking great, but they’ve got funding and top talent.  America’s profound social and political divides don’t bode well for current national unification, but are not necessarily requirements for proper investment in this process (not clear to me if we’ve even bottomed out of the current serious problems and aren’t heading for a resurgent nationalism).

Russia’s low birth-rates and post-ish Communist order contain very high levels of corruption but can also still apply many of the country’s resources, though I doubt these efforts will be as cooperative as even getting to the ISS, and could become pretty nasty.

China’s post-ish Communist order must maintain high-rates of economic growth and Chinese civilization is still undergoing crazy rates of change.  Much of the society is deeply commercial and with quite a bit of nationalism. The political order is deeply authoritarian and global in reach.  Chinese authorities are heavily investing AI modeling, artificial intelligence, and technological advancement.

We probably shouldn’t count out other players like India and Japan either.

How much am I missing?

Too much.

Bob Zubrin at The New Atlantis: ‘Moon Direct‘.  He’s a fan of creating a moon-base.

‘If we want to explore the Moon, and prepare to go beyond, we don’t need a space station in lunar orbit — but we could use a base on the Moon itself.’

There was a pretty tense atmosphere these past generations, as the primary geopolitical contest was between the United States and the Soviet Union:

Here’s actual video:

As to the further below video regarding crazy and true-believing environmentalists (more Zubrin, recommended), perhaps this brief sketch does some work:

My limited take on a Christian view of the world-Deeply Aristotelian, it incorporates a metaphysics with Man at the top of a hierarchal order of all living creatures here on Earth (dominion and stewardship), but Man’s place is beneath a God revealing himself to Man as he discovers the divine and mysterious order to be found within Nature.

My limited take post-Enlightenment back-to-Nature Romanticism-Deeply materialist and humanist, often collectivist, it incorporates a metaphysics of scientific materialism and an often inverted Christian morality of dominion and stewardship. In addition, there are many anti-scientific, anti-materialist, anti-humanist movements beneath the bloom of post-Enlightentment science, social-science and humanities thinking.

Look no further than the current postmodern mess.

How much am I missing?

Too much.

Via Youtube: ‘Curiosity’s First Year On Mars’

So many doomsayers in the prediction racket:

From Youtube Via Reason: ‘Robert Zubrin: Radical Environmentalists And Other Merchants Of Despair’

Addition: Mining the Moon or Mars is going to be very expensive, currently prohibitively so.  However, if it becomes economically viable (costs get low enough, travel, tourism, trade), there are reasons to so, especially survival.

Currently, I’ve been thinking about Mars on the Moon kind of like like going to Antarctica, but colder, drier, with little to no atmosphere, intense solar radiation and all the problems of confined spaces and being so far from home you might not return.

Repost-From Darwinian Conservatism: ‘Matt Ridley’s Evolutionary Science of Lucretian Libertarianism ‘

Full post here.

In some previous posts (here, here, and here), I have commented on the debate between classical liberals and libertarian anarchists as to whether a self-regulating society without government is possible.  Traditionally, classical liberals like Locke and Smith have said that yes, we need government, but only a limited government, to secure the conditions of liberty–to protect the rights of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness, and to provide some public goods that cannot be provided by private groups.  In response to this, libertarian anarchists have argued that limited government fails, because there is a natural tendency for the powers of government to expand.  The liberal idea that society is an evolved, self-organizing order should lead to the anarchist idea of society without government.

Ridley is unclear as to where he stands in this debate.  On the one hand, he embraces Smith, and he sees that Smith “was no anarchist” (112).  Like Smith, Ridley believes that “there is a vital role for government to play” (101).  On the other hand, in explaining the evolution of government as originating as “a mafia protection racket,” Ridley scorns “the government skyhook” (150, 238-241); and he is fascinated by historical examples of societies without much government in which multiple private law enforcers emerged. ‘

Definitely worth a read.

As previously posted:

Here’s John Gray in the Guardian on Ridley’s new book (Gray’s position is more or less that scientific progress is going on, but in human affairs, ethics and politics, things are learned but don’t stay learned…better to be pessimistic/realistic when it comes to the possibility of our reason making the world any better in these realms).

He’s not a fan of Ridley’s rational optimism:

‘If The Evolution of Everything has any value, it’s as a demonstration that, outside of science, there isn’t much progress – even of the vaguer sort – in the history of thought. Bad ideas aren’t defeated by falsification, and they don’t fade away. As Ridley’s book shows, they simply recur, quite often in increasingly primitive and incoherent forms.’

The two have butted heads before regarding Ridley’s last book:

‘John Gray, in his review of my book The Rational Optimist accuses me of being an apologist for social Darwinism. This vile accusation could not be farther from the truth. I have resolutely criticised both eugenics and social Darwinism in several of my books. I have consistently argued that both policies are morally wrong, politically authoritarian and practically foolish. In my new book I make a wholly different and more interesting argument, namely that if evolution occurs among ideas, then it is ideas, not people, that struggle, compete and die.’

How far will rationalism stretch and tell us true things about the world, predict the future and be a place to put one’s hopes? How far will Darwin’s ideas travel well?

A few years ago, Larry Arnhart at Darwinian Conservatism took a look at Ridley as opposed to Paul Erhlich’s ‘The Population Bomb’ predictions:

‘Notice that in this new journalistic coverage for Ehrlich’s Malthusian pessimism, there are no references to the arguments of people like Simon and Ridley.  Even in the articles in Nature, the scientists are careful not to mention the historical record supporting Darwinian optimism.’

Also On This Site: .Update And Repost- From YouTube: Leo Strauss On The Meno-More On The Fact/Value Distinction?’

Repost-Two Quotations By Albert Jay Nock in ‘Anarchist’s Progress’

From Edge: ‘Dennett On Wieseltier V. Pinker In The New Republic’

Maybe if you’re defending religion, Nietzsche is a problematic reference: Dinesh D’Souza And Daniel Dennett at Tufts University: Nietzsche’s Prophesy…

A Few Thoughts On Isaiah Berlin’s “Two Concepts Of Liberty”Repost-Classical Liberalism Via Friesian.Com-‘Exchange with Tomaz Castello Branco on John Gray’

A Few Thoughts On Robert Nozick’s “Anarchy, State and Utopia”