A Useful Online Tool for Line Of Sight (LOS) Communications

NC Scout over at the Brushbeater blog has a few words up about using online elevation tools to view your RF line of sight between two points.


One of the responsibilities of the RTO in a planning cycle is knowing what tools will cover the distances needed during the patrol. You very well may LOVE license free FRS handhelds, only to get two klicks into the bush to realize they don’t work like you thought they would. These problems are some of the issues we cover in class- and flexibility rules the day. One of the planning tools that makes life easy now is an RF Line of Sight (LOS) tool. Using this will give you an idea of your radius on your terrain, and you can see roughly what you’ll need as far as antenna height and direction. It’s a particularly useful tool for those incorporating sloping vees or yagis into a signals package.

directional wire

And if you wanna take your small unit capability to the next level, get a jump start on your signals skills…

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CSG: New Items Coming to Store

Combat Studies Group has announced some new items coming soon.

We have been hard at work over the last several months developing new tools to help secure your digital life. We continue to refine the Sepio Secure OS and expect to release the Sepio 2 this summer. Other items that are coming soon:

Sepio-Offgrid Rugged Laptop

– Offers the same level of rugged MILSPEC protection as the famous Toughbooks
– 14 inch HD screen
– 8-32GB RAM
– 128GB -1TB SSD or HDD
– i3 CPU (non vPro)
– Sepio Secure OS
– Optional packable solar panel/battery combo for field use
– Estimated Price: $1600-2000

The Libertas XL

– A 9 inch rugged tablet with:
– Dual-core 64bit CPU
– 16 or 32GB storage
– Estimated price: $650

Sepio-Micro Desktop

– A full featured Sepio desktop not much larger than your hand.
– Plug in your own keyboard, mouse and monitor
– Estimated price: $750

Graybox Secure Router

– Router, Access Point, Bridge, Firewall, Intrusion detection and VPN all in a small package.
– Estimated price: TBA

Home Theater System

– This would replace your Roku, AppleTV, Chromecast, AmazonFire, etc media devices. It will have the same functionality – streaming of your favorite shows, music, etc, but without the spying.
– Estimated Price: TBA

GrayMatter VPN Service

– We have been testing the beta of our very own VPN service. What will it offer?

– Servers in jurisdictions that are respectful of privacy rights
– Servers setup with same security you would find in the Sepio
– No logging of customers
– Anonymous account creation and payment support
– Wireguard, TOR, OpenVPN and Shadowsocks
– Multihop support
– Secure, non-logging DNS

– Estimated Price: $6-10 monthly

I should mention that all of our products are fully patched against the Meltdown and Spectre vulnerabilities. 

CSG is also holding a GroundRod Primer course in Boise, ID on March 24-25, 2018. The GroundRod Primer is an intensive digital security course of instruction.

Gun Control is Bearing False Witness Against Your Neighbor

From Kenn over at Black Man with a Gun. Full podcast below quoted text.

You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor. Exodus 20:16

It is exactly what prohibitionist, and anti-rights do when they push for gun control. The people, you and I that are affected by the changes in laws not the criminals, the insane, the evil or the terrorist.

To be a false witness against our neighbor basically means to falsely accuse someone else of wrongdoing. In the Torah, false witnesses were dealt with very harshly. We see in the above verses that if a person was found to be bearing false witness against another person, they would be given the punishment that the other person would have received if the witness was true! With such a righteous law, we can understand why ‘by the mouth of two or three witnesses’ every matter truly was established. If anyone rose up as a false witness, they would be given the same punishment they thought to give to their neighbor…. risking their own life! With such a thing facing them, they would be very careful, yes?

WA Gun Owners Action League Update, Mar. 9th, 2018

From the Washington Gun Owners Action League:

Legislative Update from Olympia 9 March 2018




2519, 5553 AND 6298 TO GOV






It’s over!The fat lady has done her part and has waddled off the stage,
and our legislators are packing up and heading home from Olympia.At this
point there is no talk of the need for a special session, unlike the
three special sessions we had last year..

The 2017-2018 biennium set a record for the number of gun related bills
filed: 48, 25 anti-, 20 pro- and three neutral.But as foretold in the
Book of Matthew, “Many are called but few are chosen.”Only four of the
48 managed to make it to the governor’s desk:None of the pro-gun bills
made the cut in the Democrat-dominated legislature, surprise,
surprise.HB 2519 and SBs 5553, 5992 and 6248 were the chosen few.SB
6620, the last minute “assault weapon” bill, failed to get a vote on the
last day of the session (given the time allowed, it was unlikely to pass
the House anyway).

On Tuesday, 7 March, Governor Inslee signed SB 5992, the “bump stock”
ban.In its final version, it only applied specifically to bump stocks
and not to other “trigger devices,” and allows for a one-year buy-back
period to be set up by the Washington State Patrol.Your reward for
complying with the law is $150.(As far as I can tell, nothing prevents
you from shipping or selling them out of state, as long as the
transaction occurs out-of-state).

HB 2519and SBs 5553 and 6298 sit on the governor’s desk awaiting his
action.He has three options: sign the bill(s) as is, section veto
portions he doesn’t like allowing the remainder to become law, or let it
sit without his signature, at which point it will become law.Unlike the
president, Washington has no provision for a “pocket veto” (no
signature) to kill a bill.I expect the governor to sign all three bills,
as he did SB 5992.

As I reported earlier, HB 2519 was amended in the House to allow issue
of CPLs to current and former military members aged 18-20.That amendment
was pulled by the Senate Law & Justice committee.The conference
committee also amended the final version of the bill added language that
allows the issuing authority to require a photograph be submitted with
the application, and that photograph to be embossed on the license.This
was discussed by the Department of Licensing more than ten years ago but
never implemented.It is solely up to the issuing authority to require
it.Some states have photo CPLs, other do not.

It appears in my rush to head for Las Vegas in January for the annual
Shooting, Hunting, Outdoor Trades show, I missed an anti-gun bill
filed.HB 2805 (Rep. Pollet, D-46) would ban the sale of exposed lead
projectile ammunition to those 18-20 years old.Concerns about lead
poisoning among the young, according to the bill language.Maybe Chicago
should consider such a bill.

Given the fact that for the first time in several years Democrats
control both the House and Senate as well as the governor’s mansion, why
so few anti-gun bills passed?One or two pro-gun Democrats in each
chamber helped us, and 2018 is mid-term election year.Had they passed a
slew of anti-gun bills, they likely would have lost perhaps several
rural-area legislative seats in November.Expect them to come back in
January, 2019 with blood in their eyes for gun owners.

By failing to address the “assault weapon” issue, it opens the door for
an initiative later this year that is likely to go well beyond simple
registration and/or age limits.And as we’ve been hearing from Florida
over the past week, where the Republican-majority legislature just
raised the age to buy long guns to 21 AND imposed a three-day waiting
period because of the Parkland school shooting, there are far too many
gun owners out there who don’t like “black rifles.”Or as we call them,
Elmer Fudds, “As long as they don’t come after my wabbit gun, I don’t
care what they do about other guns.”

Continue reading “WA Gun Owners Action League Update, Mar. 9th, 2018”

Managing Pain in a Pinch

the american civil defense assn.

Pills in woman hands.

by Cynthia J. Koelker, MD

Excerpt from Armageddon Medicine, How to Be Your Own Doctor in 2012 and Beyond

The daily queue of suffering seems endless. Toothache, stomachache, headache, earache, back pain, leg pain, joint pain, neck pain, sore throat, sore feet, sore muscles, sore eyes. People come to you seeking relief – relief from their pain, and relief from fear. Are you up to the task of helping others, or ready to run away? Becoming a healer is not for the faint of heart.

If and when the medical community collapses, those left to carry on will need an armamentarium of tools to deal with pain. Even if it’s only your own problems and those of your family that you’ll be facing, learning how to relieve pain now, before you’re in the midst of crisis, will spare you needless worry. Pain is the #1 symptom that drives patients to physicians today…

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Agenda 2 Screening in Grandview, March 6, 2018

Household of Faith sends:

AGENDA 2 On Tour is just seven days away.

On behalf of Christian Heritage, Household of Faith is privileged to host Curtis Bowers and his son, Charlie, on Tuesday, March 6, 2018 at 6:30 p.m. for a screening and discussion of the award-winning documentary, AGENDA 2: MASTERS OF DECEIT.

The information documented in AGENDA 2: MASTERS OF DECEIT is critical for how we pray and how we act as responsible citizens of heaven and citizens of America. The recent episode we had regarding sex education in the middle school in Grandview was just that–one episode. The “opposition” has since increased pressure to get the teaching into the schools; the battle is not over by a long shot.

The challenge of the movie is one we need to carefully consider if we are to be wise as serpents and harmless as doves as we engage the culture for Christ. I have not once listened to Curtis Bowers without being deeply challenged by his faith and by his perspective. To have him address the issues in person at the screening will–I think–increase the impact of the movie in your life.

The cost of the screening is $15.00 per family. Folks can register online at the Christian Heritage website (credit card); OR they can register by cash or check (only) at the door.



Click here to download promotional pdf.


Mosby: Courage Is a Choice; No One Is Coming to Save You

From John Mosby at Mountain Guerilla, Courage is a Choice -an essay about how to be courageous and not a coward.

I am going to discuss some things, from my own experiences and observations, that relate to this, in the context of the prepared citizen, recognizing our current position in the normal cycles of history.

To whit: courage is a choice. It has been said that courage is like the fuel tank on a vehicle, and eventually, if you use enough of it, you simply run out. I don’t know how perfectly accurate that is, but it is a good enough analogy for the moment. Here is the thing about that analogy though, and the point of this: like a fuel tank, you can refill the reservoir before it runs out—or even before it runs low. Running “out” of courage—especially in an occupation or role that demands physical and moral courage—is no different than running out of gas…it is a choice, and rather simply remedied, by topping off the tank regularly. If you read this blog regularly, I will take the liberty of assuming that you have chosen to identify yourself as someone who intends—when the time arises—stand to protect your innangarð, however you define it. This article is intended then, to discuss HOW we might make ourselves more ready to do so, without becoming niðings, when the moment comes.

I have previously written at least one article with Aristotle’s famed quote, “We become what we do,” as the title, and it is a line I have mentioned numerous times over the years in my writing. It is a core part of my personal philosophy on life, and has been since my grandfather said it to me decades ago, before I even knew who said it first (seriously, until I was in my thirties, I thought my grandfather had made it up.).

So, what does that have to do with the choice of courage? We are not born intrinsically courageous. If anything, our evolutionary biology programs us to be rather craven, into at least adolescence, as a survival mechanism. Due to our inherent physiological shortcomings as “hairless apes,” who lack fangs or claws, until we are old enough to manufacture and wield tools, natural selection has made it the role of the adults of our tribe/clan/pack/community, to protect us from harm.

For most of humanity’s existence, the majority of humans have understood that those “bumps in the night” are not just random noises. SOMETHING made those noises, and sometimes those things had claws, fangs, and a taste for the succulence of human flesh. It was understood that the role of any man who considered himself such, was to go out and hunt down and slaughter those things that might harm the young of his tribe or clan or community. It was the duty of every woman, no matter how domesticated she might be; no matter how happy she might be keeping the hearth clean and welcoming, to stand ready to pick up her husband’s extra shield and spear, and stand in the door of their hovel, hut, or fortress, and slaughter those beasts that came looking for the flesh of her offspring, when her husband was absent…

The problem in America, as with every other great civilization in history, is that we—like our forebears—abrogated that responsibility to a selected corps of “protectors,” in favor of doing less dangerous, “more rewarding” tasks like banking and arguing before a courtroom, fixing someone’s plumbing, or working on their computer problems. Even my farmer neighbors, those stalwart representatives of our yeoman agrarian past, when a predator stalks their livestock, are as likely to call in the game warden as they are to simply shoot, shovel, and shut up.

This then, is the most important lesson given the American people by the niðings of Broward County—and perhaps the only thing of worth they’ve done in their lives, if I had to guess—and it is one that many of us have been telling people for a very long time: no one is coming to save you. You are responsible for your safety, your family’s safety, and the safety of your community (and if you think any of those stand alone, then you are a fool).

How then, do we ensure that, when the bell tolls for us, we make the “right” choice, and choose courage over cowardice? We begin by ensuring we have filled the fuel tank, and then we top it off at regular intervals, rather than letting the needle ride the “E.” We choose courage—moral and physical—in our every activity, every day…

To continue reading at Mountain Guerrilla, click here.

Curtailing Mass Murder

This article is from American Founding Principles.

Once again we are faced with another tragic school shooting and once again many people beat their drums for gun control. Yet, is gun control the solution to our nation’s recent epidemic of mass shootings? Asked in this way, the answer is obviously yes, because other than firearms, there is nearly no other object that people use to lethally “shoot” another person. But such a question is equivalent to, “Have you stopped beating your spouse?”

The first step in finding a solution to any problem is defining the problem one is trying to solve. Putting a definition, to the issue at hand, in the form of a question, the actual question should be, “How can we, as a society, curtail mass murder in America, no matter the method used?”

It would be very short sighted to assume that firearms are the cause of this epidemic and ignore all other possible reasons for what is happening. Imagine if we were able to magically stop killers from using guns and they instead turned to some other form of murder that is more lethal. Our efforts would have been futile indeed. Besides, firearms have been a prevalent part our society since its inception, and until relatively recently people did not use them to indiscriminately kill others, even when fully automatic weapons, like the Thompson submachine gun, were commercially available without restriction.

The second step in finding a solution to any problem is collecting information on all the possible causes that may contribute to the problem at hand, and then researching them down to their root cause. Root cause analysis is critical to problem solving, because only removing a surface cause will superficially affect the outcome, but the problem will still persist.

Some possible causes, which have been proposed by pundits, for this shift in the willingness of a few people to indiscriminately kill their fellow Americans, is prescription psychotropic drugs, single parent homes, and a culture that glorifies killing via many forms of social media, such as movies and video games. Without further research into all the non-jihadist mass murders in America, it is impossible to speculate how much these potential causes influenced the killers in each of the numerous incidents since 1966, when Charles Whitman shot people from the University of Texas clock tower, and especially those that have occurred since Columbine.

A root cause behind each of these potential causes is the belief that it is acceptable, or at least not prohibited, to murder another person…

Read the entire article my clicking here

See also T. L. Davis’ Child Sacrifice of the Left.

…First, this is a republic, not a democracy. The majority has absolutely no say in what rights the individual has. Those rights, though often treated as privileges in many states and cities, remain rights, the security of which may have to be defended the old-fashioned way, through force. Chief among them is the right to self-defense using whatever tools one is most comfortable with, including and especially guns. This is not up for debate, it is not even up for discussion. Hold all of the meetings and all of the discussions that one chooses to have, but it still comes down to having to enforce whatever law is agreed upon by people who were not elected to arbiter our rights away, but to defend them with the full force of law. Granted, they may take the coward’s way out, they are good at that, but then it falls to us to enforce our own rights. One only possesses the rights they are willing to defend with their lives.

Second, their conclusion that some sort of gun restrictions will end school shootings is absolutely false. There are only two solutions to school shootings: 1) end public schools and the congregation of hundreds of children in the same place at the same time; 2) harden those schools with armed guards, administrators and/or teachers. Simply putting the weapons in their hands will stop mass killings at schools. It has worked at every venue it has been tried, schools are no different.

If those solutions are not part of the discussion, then there can be no solution at all and only a gigantic social upheaval that will make the occasional school shooting pale in comparison to the carnage served up by one section of the nation deciding to debilitate, unarm and make victims of the other half. Everywhere there is strict gun control there is rampant crime, a concentration of gang violence and murder rates that are unacceptable to those of us who understand what a republic is and how it works…

And also Davis’ Public School Death Traps.

Add Malcolm Pollock’s Reaping the Whirlwind.

Brandon Smith of Alt-Market weighs in “The solution is simple — abolish all gun free zones…” in Mass Shootings Will Never Negate The Need For Gun Rights.

And for those who think “these things only happen in America,” we present the following statistics from crimeresearch.org.

National Stop the Bleed Day, March 31, 2018

The top cause of preventable death in trauma is bleeding. 20% of people who have died from traumatic injuries could have survived with quick bleeding control.

National Stop The Bleed Day brings Bleeding Control (B-CON) Instructors and students together for a day of training. Free of charge in many places. Go to bleedingcontrol.org to find a class.

Locally, Columbia Safety will be holding a Stop the Bleed class on Saturday, March 31st from 5pm-7pm for only $10.

Prehospital tourniquets in civilian settings significantly decreased mortality

‘You’re Fired, Judge’: Sanctioning Federal Judges for Bad Behavior

The subject of judicial misconduct having come up recently in local conversation, the following American Thinker article from last year provides some additional thinking/acting points.

The Constitution only allows federal judges to serve during “good behavior.” This “good behavior” limitation on judicial tenure derives from one of the oldest and most well-established legal principles of our founding and English legal history. This limitation on appointed officials holding office pervades our founding revolutionary-era state constitutions. It’s time for Trump to consider activating the power of the political branches to fire badly behaving judges. Time to drain the judicial swamp.

Recent Obama appointees, including associates of Obama since law school, earned the enmity of a wide range of legal and scholastic critics over their travel ban rulings. How bad was it? Even #NeverTrumpers and liberal lawyers came out in a chorus of condemnation against the Hawaii and Maryland judicial actions. #NeverTrump lawyer David French, lawyers at National Review, and liberal-leaning law professor Jonathan Turley each criticized the decision. Liberal Democratic law professor Alan Dershowitz noted that the judges would have never done this to Obama, even if the executive order was identical. Anti-Trump critic David Frum of the Atlantic criticized the decision. Even five Ninth Circuit judges, sua sponte, amended their prior statements to criticize these judges’ actions as without precedent.

Why the unison of condemnation? Because, as one law professor noted, much of the Hawaii judge’s actions were based on judicial acts of “misleading.” That’s polite, diplomatic, I-might-be-in-front-of-that-judge-someday way of saying that some of these anti-Trump, anti-travel ban judges were not honest. If private lawyers had acted the way these judges did, they could be sanctioned and could lose their license and livelihoods, be thrown out of court, or even charged with a crime. That is why Judge Alex Kozinski authored two amendments to his prior dissent to specifically criticize the basis of the Hawaii judge’s ruling.

What can Trump or Congress do about it, if they believe these federal judges exceeded their authority and engaged in disreputable conduct?

The Constitution provides two restrictions on the tenure of a federal judge: first, if they misuse or abuse their office, then the Constitution, under Article II, section 4, authorizes Congressional quasi-criminal remedies of impeachment. The impeachment provision applies to the President “and all civil officers of the United States” whenever their conduct constitutes “treason, bribery, or other high crimes and misdemeanors.” Historically, the latter provision has been rejected for purely private conduct. That is why both Alexander Hamilton and Richard Nixon were not impeached for either tax evasion or financial misdeeds, though both were accused of one or the other. Bill Clinton successfully argued against conviction on the grounds his perjury, though in office, derived from a purely personal matter, rather than a presidential one.

 The Constitution provides a second, separate restriction on the tenure of a federal judge: Article III of the Constitution limits a judge’s tenure to continuous “good behavior…”

Continuing reading the article at American Thinker by clicking here

The Heritage Foundation has its own brief essay on the good behavior clause .

…Still, both the language and the weight of historical evidence indicate that the Good Behavior Clause was intended to refer to life tenure rather than to a distinct standard for removal. However, just as the Good Behavior Clause reminds the other branches that the judiciary is truly independent, it also reminds judges that life tenure is not a license for the wanton or the corrupt. It is in this sense both a shield and a sword—an affirmation of judicial independence and a reservation for judicial removal.

NBC News: How Going Ham Could Save Hawaii

NBC News’ Left Field reporting unit recently did a report on communications in Hawaii and how ham radio could help in a disaster.

Hawaii’s recent false nuclear missile alert showed us how reliant we are on cell phones and modern technology—and how unprepared we are if they become inaccessible. But in case the unexpected happens, an unlikely group of hobbyists—ham radio operators—are standing at the ready and may save us all.


NC Scout Announces Radiotelephone Operator Course

**UPDATE** The class location is in North Caroling.

NS Scout at the Brushbeater blog has announced his new RTO Course. The first date is March 3-4th, 2018.  The location is not announced, but I would expect it to be somewhere in the South Atlantic states. If you’re in that region, or can easily get there, this should be some good training.

What the RTO Course is:

This course is designed to instruct students on the basics of effective communications in a tactical environment. Students will learn everything from how to create a proper Signals Operating Index and traffic handling to basic antenna theory and construction for local use as well as a primer on how HF works. All of this culminates in an FTX on the second day.

What this course is NOT:

This is not a ‘ham radio’ class. Strong emphasis is placed on ‘making your equipment work in a tactical environment’ versus bombarding the student with technical or hobby-oriented data. We will be working on a level most ‘hams’ never do. So while a license is certainly helpful, it is not required, but by the end of class you’ll come away with a real understanding of why it is an advantage.

While not designed to be physically intense, there will be field work on both days.

RTO Course: $200 per Student

This class will teach students the basics of communications at the Team or Squad Level in the field. Topics of instruction include:

  • Identifying Equipment Requirements
  • Writing a Signals Operating Index
  • PACE Planning for Communications
  • Basic equipment capabilities
  • Traffic handling
  • Improvised antenna types, uses and construction
  • Setting up and running an NVIS HF station
  • Message Formats
  • Setting up and communicating from a Hide site

Two day course will culminate in an field training event running a TOC station and Hide site in the field. Students will each build an antenna and demonstrate competency in team communications basics during the field exercise. Amateur Radio license qualification is helpful, but not required. This is NOT a ‘ham radio’ class but each student will come away with a basic understanding of a team’s communications needs in a tactical environment and how to best meet them under less-than-ideal circumstances. No equipment is required for this course; however, if students want to get field practice with their own gear, it is highly encouraged but done so at their own risk. Instruction is completely off-grid.


Update 2: Brushbeater has posted a student’s review of the RTO course. Click here.