…from Russia Today, Moscow

[ Editor’s Note: I don’t really know quite what to say here, rare for an editor/columnist. I read the end of the story after choosing to run it based on the headline and video, and find out that he has made several attempts to do this before and somehow survived.

His Wikipedia is strange, with generally failed fundraising attempts and nothing about his past life or family or where he went to school to learn how to land a rocket with no wingspan in rough, open desert country.

There is no mention of the ejection seat failure, so I must assume there was not one. He rode his last rocket straight into the ground at full vertical. Game over. Was he an “ejection seats are for pussies kind of guy?”

Dear Mike, wherever you are in heaven, I hope you are in a full lockdown facility waiting for your attempted suicide trial. I hear that it is a serious offense in Pearly Gates land. Get a good attorney and pay him with world rights to your video, showing the world what a real daredevil does.

I would not advise filing a discrimination lawsuit in your present location, as I suspect you would get hit with a contempt of court charge, with a penalty of having to redo your last ride at the start of each day up there.

Forgive us if we don’t make you a role model for hobbyist children. That said, we are dying to know (pardon the pun) what it was like when you were riding down your last lemon. Did you have any regrets?

Good luck if we do not hear from you. I can hear you singing “I did it my way” at your negligence trial as part of your “not insane” testimony. We will pass the hat here at VT to pay the song royalties for you.

If you do well at the holy court house, who knows, maybe you will get your set of wings and have the last laugh on us, including writers like me trying to turn this into a “what not to do with your life” lesson for children.

If you do get your wings, feel free to visit us. But please call first, as we will have to get prepared Jim W. Dean ]

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– First published … February 23, 2020

Daredevil Flat-Earther ‘Mad’ Mike Hughes has died after launching himself into the sky in a homemade rocket. Purported video of the accident shows the fatal launch.

Hughes and a colleague built the steam-powered rocket in hopes of shooting the daredevil 5,000 feet (1.5km) into the air. The endeavor was being documented by the Science Channel, which wanted to feature him in a new series called ‘Homemade Astronauts’.

A video purportedly filmed at the site shows the rocket being launched into the sky near Barstow, California, before Hughes plunges back down to the earth.

The self-taught rocket engineer gained notoriety for his belief that the Earth is flat. However, Hughes said that his flat-Earth belief was not the primary motivator for his latest, and final, rocket test, stressing that he was simply a daredevil.

The 64-year-old first shot himself into the sky in 2014, and completed several launches. His most successful attempt took place in March 2018 when he propelled himself approximately 1,875 feet (572 meters) into the air before crashing back to Earth at around 350mph (563kph).

He sustained multiple injuries from his previous flights, before ultimately succumbing to his dangerous hobby on Saturday.


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  1. From (Shia) (Al-Islam.org)
    Question 36: The Earth Being Spherical And The Holy Qur’an
    Question: Is there evidence in the Holy Qur’an and traditions regarding the Earth being spherical?

    Answer: Of the indications present in Qur’an regarding these mysteries is that the Earth is spherical. And this can be surmised from the following verses:

    (1) And We made the people who were deemed weak to inherit the eastern lands and the western ones which We had blessed; and the good word of your Lord was fulfilled in the children of Israel because they bore up (sufferings) patiently…1

    (2) The Lord of the heavens and the earth and what is between them, and Lord of the easts.2

    (3) But nay! I swear by the Lord of the Easts and the Wests that We are certainly able to bring instead (others) better than them, and We shall not be overcome.3

  2. Jim W. Dean, Managing Editor February 24, 2020 at 9:58 am…..The Patriot system was a good scam. They virtually never get used, so the buyers never know they can be defeated until a live action situation,…. Its a second rate scam next to the F35 and the Littoral ships…. and the “for profit” prison systems and maybe the aircraft carriers… and the poppy fields

  3. I’m quite sure he gathered absolute concrete conclusive proof the world is flat on this flight but died before he could reveal it… NASA probably shot down his rocket… or at least gave him the plans for it…

  4. Ah… Hunter Thompson, Fear and Loathing should be on all the high school reading list establish that data point on the American psychology. He was crazy like a fox, understanding that in a highly competitive business that you had to first distinguish yourself, and then he added doing it in a way that few would want to copy, so he had no competition. VT is a different version of that concept, but similar in that no one wants to copy us, because they don’t have the talent bench, and they would not want to take the risks. But I am hoping that Mike left a letter with the notation of “To be opened just in case I was wrong”.

  5. Anyone aware of his plans and who didn’t attempt to persuade him from such a bona fide, bone headed launch should be arrested as accessories to suicide. Dumb is as dumb does.

  6. Although our colleges and universities are far from perfect part of their purpose is to avoid “learning the hard way” as he did. This is so sad. Engineers take one of the most difficult curriculum’s in any institution; all the rigorous physics classes, rigorous classes in differential and integral calculus,differential equations, complex variable theory, probability and statistics theory plus all the engineering courses and laboratories and then even a few liberal arts courses and writing classes for engineers and the ethics of engineering. All this and more is to learn from the mistakes of the past in so far as that is possible. It is not perfect but is better than reinventing the wheel. There is a mountain of evidence that the Earth is nominally round or an oblate sphere with mountains and valleys and oceans and rivers, etc. Pictures even show the curvature of Earth. Say a prayer of thanks that engineers and not religious freaks design our buildings, bridges, automobiles,ships, and everything we use every day. Let’s not return to the dark ages again. Isn’t it bad enough now with government as corrupt as it is?

  7. Another “Hold My Beer“ moment of stupefying ignorance & not sure what he proved. I’m not convinced that any Rocket Engineer from Mike’s Crew would want to list Mike as a reference on they’re Curriculum Vitae or as a resume builder tool.

    Darwin Award Emeritus Gene Pool candidate imo. Follow your dreams but at least also follow the 7 P’s principle (Prior Proper Planning Prevents Piss Poor Performance.)

  8. Thanks Mad Mike you put Barstow on the map as somewhere other than on the way to Vegas. Best wishes in the other world.

    • The Patriot system was a good scam. They virtually never get used, so the buyers never know they can be defeated until a live action situation, like poor, starving Yemen. One would think countries buying them would want to go to the annual vendor testing where a third party is attempting to use a missile to penetrate them on live TV, but alas, nothing like this is ever done. Gosh, someone in the Intel biz might want to ask, “who benefits from a set up like that.” It would be like never auditing banks as it wastes taxpayer money, because bankers must be honest, otherwise they couldn’t be bankers, right? You just can’t make this shit up.

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