Month: December 2023

Still opposed to SWATting…

But I did get a chuckle when the other side got a taste.

A fake emergency call to police resulted in officers responding Friday night to the home of Maine Secretary of State Shenna Bellows just a day after she removed former President Donald Trump from the state’s presidential primary ballot under the Constitution’s insurrection clause.

She becomes the latest elected politician to become a target of swatting, which involves making a phone call to emergency services with the intent that a large first responder presence, including SWAT teams, will show up at a residence.

Officers Respond to Home of Maine Official Who Removed Trump from Ballot (

Oh well…

Networking Glitches – Update

My original router was Vyatta running on a virtual machine on at PC. 100baseT connections
I upgraded that to an EdgeRouter X by Ubiquiti. The base software was built on Vyatta.
The EdgeRouter X is dual core 800Mhz MIPS cpu with 4 (or 5?) Gig-E ports.
The EdgeRouter X was unable to keep up with 1GBit/s traffic between two ports with NAT running.
The EdgeRouter X was just replaced with an EdgeRouter 4.
The EdgeRouter 4 is a four core 1Gz MIPS cpu with 3 Gig-E ports and one 1Gbit SFP port.
The Edgerouter 4 is keeping up with the current traffic load.
Things will likely break when I upgrade to the Fidium 2Gbit/s services.
(950 words)
One of the things I enjoy doing is teaching English as a Second Language to some of my client’s employees. (You in the back, stop sniggering, yes, I can actually teach dis stuf.)

I have written a custom program that tracks the progress of each student in their book of choice. There is a screen for reading which displays a bit more than a paragraph. I have buttons to show definition or to play a pronunciation sound bite.

It tracks each session, recording which paragraphs are read, what words we look at. At the end of a session, I can click one button and email them the automatic notes along with any notes I might add.

To do the actual communication, we use Google Hangouts/Meetings. Unfortunately, switching between different displays is not easy.

Enter Open Broadcast Studio, or OBS for short. OBS allows me to set up scenes. Each scene has different sources. These are combined to create a single output.

The output is then streamed to a streaming service, or it is recorded. Or you can use the virtual camera to export the image.

This thing is so neat that I created a short animation of Sonic popping up over my shoulder as I sat at my desk. Then, in a video chat with my grandson, I clicked the button that made the animation run. My grandson was over the roof to see Sonic in the same room as me.

I set up OBS to follow the window that has focus, of an allowed subset, which makes it easy for me to run three windows and have my students see exactly what I want them to see.

The problem that started to crop up was the network was dropping out. Two or three times per session.

In addition to that, we’ve had significant issues with the upstairs getting good signal since the new roof went on the house.

When we upgraded from Comcast to Fidium, we got a 100x speed up in our uploads. This means that we can do regular backups of the machines at the house.

Except I can’t. I’m topping out at 20 Mbits/second on the backups. This is much too slow.

Tuesday, I had had enough. I had communicated with my cloud provider, verified bandwidth in and out of my instances. From there I followed up with Fidium. Fidium said, “that’s slow” and sent out a tech.

Wednesday the tech arrives. We do speed testing with all of my equipment out of the loop. 995Mbit/s. Close enough to 1Gbit/s to make no difference.

The problem is with my equipment.

My equipment is commercial grade stuff. It should not be failing. So I do testing. Sure enough, my router is the bottleneck.

My original router was a virtual machine running on a PC with Vyatta router software. It worked fine, but that PC needed to retire. It was replaced with an Ubiquiti EdgeRouter X. That was a fanless box about 4x5x1 inches. 5 ports with PoE. Great little router. 800Mhz Dual core. It replaced my old PC box and just worked.

That is, until I tried to move 1Gb/s in and out of that poor little box.

It crapped its little pants. Up to and including locking up hard.

As I’m investigating, my wife screams from the kitchen. When I went to investigate, the door of the front-loading washing machine had broken off.

That’s ok, It is mostly plastic with some metal bushings for the hinge.

NOPE. It is mostly plastic. The outer frame runs $250, the inner door panel runs $250, the hinge is cheap at $55.

And I can’t get it apart because one of the screws has rusted and stripped while I was attempting to take it out.

Which leads to ordering new and better tools.

The next day we were in the garage, on a 20ft extension ladder leaning against the slope of the roof, drilling and cutting a hole in the roof.

When we had the roof replaced, I had the guys go into the garage and mark where it was safe to cut through into the space between the house and the garage. So I was able to drill it safely.

We then spent nearly 3 hours trying to pull cable from the house side to the hole we had cut. It didn’t help that my son got his left and right mixed up and was yelling at me to move my tape to the right when he really wanted it to go left.

In the end, we stuck a 6 ft length of aluminum rod through the hole at the house side. My son then fished a zip tie loop over that rod and then that was pushed back to the wall. Then we feed the other fishing tape out from the house and through the loop. Then my son pulled his tape back to the hole we had cut, finally pulling it back into the garage.

10 minutes later, I had cable upstairs and the PoE access point powered up. It all just worked.

Network win! We finally have good connectivity in the upstairs again.

This left the washing machine and router to deal with. After discussions with the family, I ordered a new router.

It arrived Saturday. I was able to transfer the configuration from the old router. Did some other magic configuration. Then simply unplugged the old router, plugged the cables into the new router.

The upgrade was so seamless that connections to my remote instances stayed up while I did the switch over.

So I now have 950Mbit/second in and out of the router. My backups might run faster. The world is getting network better.

Oh, no glitches in network traffic since I replaced the router.

What’s a Little Moot between Enemies?

(1100 words)
My friend, Jim, use to tell me, “Never attribute to malice, that which can adequately be explained by incompetence.”

Does anybody who reads this blog believer that Rob Bonta actually believes the stuff he peddles about every California infringement being “constitutional?”

Who here believes that Judge Easterbrook of the Seventh Circuit and his Muppet, Judge Wood, actually think that AR-15s are machine guns and can be banned?

Does anybody actually think that Judge F. Dennis Saylor IV, really believes that the “in common use” phrase is confusing?

We look at these cases, and it is clear that this in not incompetence, this is pure malice on the part of the state and of the inferior courts.

We know this is malice, intentionally inflicted on The People, when we see the state play games to avoid a ruling that would remove an unconstitutional law.

In Winter, the Supreme Court described the four factors in determining if a preliminary injunction or a stay should be issued. Likelihood of success on the merits, irreparable harm, balance of equity, and public interest. Every lawyer knows this, every judge and justice knows this, every state actor involved with litigating these legal challenges knows this.

Hell, even you and I know this.

Another part of the Winter opinion was that it addressed how important it was to look at the likelihood of success on the merits. The court is not allowed to look at the “public interest” and decide on that factor.

Yet courts did it, over and over and over again.

They would decide that it was in the public interest for some infringement to exist and deny injunctions.

So what happens if the plaintiff is likely to prevail on the merits? The court moves to the next Winter factor, irreparable harm. The loss of First Amendment freedoms, for even minimal periods of time, unquestionably constitutes irreparable injuryElrod V. Burns, 427 U.S. 347, 373 (1976). More bluntly, if it is a constitutional challenge, and the movant is likely to win on the merits, they also win on irreparable harm.

Similarly, the Supreme Court has found that the balance of equity favors the movant when it is a constitutional challenge they are likely to win on the merits. Finally, the Supreme Court has stated that there is no public interest in enforcing an unconstitutional law.

What this all means is that if the movant is likely to win on the merits of a constitutional challenge, they win.

When the inferior courts decided Second Amendment challenges based on public interest favoring the state, they had to knowingly disregard all the Supreme Court instructions on merits first and if it is a constitutional challenge, they win.

They did this by creating circular logic. They could deny the movant’s motion for a preliminary injunction because they were unlikely to win on the merits because the inferior courts were going to disregard the merits because of public interest.

Before Bruen, we were watching another case coming out of New York State. That was the challenge to NYC’s regulation that said you could not transport your firearm out of NYC. The only places you could take your firearm were to the very few actual gun ranges in NYC.

The plaintiffs (good guys) wanted to take their firearms out of the city to other states and even NY, for competition, hunting, and other.

For multiple years, the state fought tooth and nail to stop the challenge. At every moment, they made the claim that their infringement fully comported with the Second Amendment. They continued to make this claim until the case was being considered for certiorari. When that happened, the city removed the regulation. The state passed a new law to forbid NYC from reinstating the regulation.

Then the city and state went to the Supreme Court and whined that the case was now moot. There was no more conflict. The plaintiffs (good guys) had gotten all the relief that they had requested.

Regardless of your stance on abortion, it is obvious that the longest a woman can be pregnant is 9 months, give or take a little. That means that if a woman wants to challenge an abortion regulation, she has to get through the entire legal process, and reach a resolution within 9 months.

It isn’t going to happen. For many years, abortion cases were mooted because the fetus had aged out of being aborted.

Consider one example case. A single woman residing in Dallas County, Texas brought suit in federal court in March 1970. She was at least 1 month pregnant at that time. By December 1970, she would have given birth. In January 1973, the Supreme Court issued their opinion that she could get an abortion.

When the Supreme Court issued their opinion, her daughter had recently celebrated her second birthday.

In the normal course of events, this case would have been mooted in December 1970. Because the plaintiff amended her original complaint to sue “on behalf of herself and all other women” similarly situated, the case was not mooted.

If your law is good and constitutional, why would you want to keep the Supreme Court from issuing an opinion? They are going to find in your favor, right?

Up in the Eighth Circuit court, we see the same game being played. The plaintiffs (good guys) have been attempting to have a Minnesota law overturned banning 18-20 year-olds from getting gun permits.

These plaintiffs have been fighting this legal battle since June 2021, before Bruen. The state demanded that the plaintiffs prove they were in the age group. The state was upset that the individual plaintiffs had joined the organizational plaintiffs the same day the suit was filed.

In discovery, the state attempted to get a complete list of members from the organizational plaintiffs. That was rebuffed and only the three on the suit were disclosed.

Amazingly enough, the three individuals are now old enough to get a permit under Minnesota law. The state wants to moot the case.

Knowing this was going to happen, the plaintiffs moved to amend their original complaint by adding other individual plaintiffs. The state claims “it ain’t fair!” the lower court has given a deadline for filings. The amended filing was after that filing, so it should be disregarded.

If their law is good, why are they attempting to moot it? It isn’t like there aren’t other people in the same situation. The plaintiffs have even attempted to bring forth more such plaintiffs.

The state wants this case dead. If we want the law overturned, the state argues that we should start all over again.


Elrod V. Burns, 427 U.S. 347 (1976)
Minneapolis Star & Tribune Co. V. Minnesota Commissioner of Revenue, 75 L. Ed. 2d 295 (1983)
Staples V. United States, 128 L. Ed. 2d 608 (1994)
District of Columbia v. Heller, 467 U.S. 837 (2008)
Winter V. Natural Resources Defense Council, Inc., 172 L. Ed. 2d 249 (2008)
New York State Rifle & Pistol Assn., Inc. V. Bruen, 142 S.Ct. 2111 (U.S. 2022)

The confidence of ignorance

This video from TikTok reposted to X.

This is the sort of confidence that comes from total ignorance of history.

How does that land whale expect to survive a fight?

I believe that she believes that a second Civil War will look like a big George Floyd or Pro-Palestine protest/riot.

Thru block traffic, they set fires, they smash windows, and we surrender.

They are used to being treated either kid gloves.

They fire mortar fireworks at police and the police come back with tear gas.

They block traffic and then they cry and scream when some car pushes through them at 5 mph, giving them plenty of time to get out of the way.

Thru can’t conceive of real pushback.

Of when they block traffic, a driver gets out with a rifle and starts shooting them.

They throw rocks and frozen water bottles and the return is M855, not pepper spray.

They’ve never cranked the violence knob past 3 or 4, so don’t understand what violence really is and how to prepare for it.

They learned about Yugoslavia from their tankie friends.  They have never heard of Rwanda.

History books are what they set their bongs on.

That green haired hippopotamus will be found dead in the streets because she was too fat to be marched all the way into the woods to be shot.