Stephen Michael Kellat alpacaherder@identi.ca

Asset Accusation Atmospheric

Purported Fiction Author. Lapsed Podcaster. Ubuntu Member. TeX User Group Member. Purported Politician. Basic Trained ICS Staffer.

  • Okay, So Now What?

    2021-07-14T04:20:22Z via Dianara To: Public CC: Followers

    Well, I am stuck. Things are not proceeding as well as I might have otherwise have hoped. I spoke at a public event and the local daily newspaper acted as if I was an invisible ghost during the event. If there were any clearer sign that perhaps the race for city council is already lost on my part it would be that one of the writers at the daily newspaper basically acts like I do not exist. Since she covers that city council I am toast.


    Of course, with the events in Tennessee that just happened I continue to be horrified at where my country is going. NPR had a scary interview about just how bad thing got here thanks to Facebook. I am still puzzled at the lady who decided the high speed crash was a great idea.


    At times I am ready to drop out of the campaign. This area has many needs. Getting one more politician isn't one of them.


    The knowledge ecology here is very, very bad. I've been looking at how to bootstrap a new local news operation with no money and keep winding up with few positive ways forward. The community may be beyond hope and lost to QAnon as well as its fellow travelers thanks to FB being the main means of conveying news lately.


    There are ways around my conundrum, I think. If I wind up just producing a single leaf news sheet on legal size paper (otherwise known as a "penny press") it would be a start. Content from DVIDS about the Ohio National Guard, the Near Shore Marine Forecast, the Zone Forecast, and maybe a weather map would all be public domain and fill things out easily. I have been fussing over this stuff in this repo: https://code.launchpad.net/~skellat/+git/auto-newspaper


    It is late and I really need to sleep. The gas company is coming for a meter inspection...



    Michele Montagna likes this.

    just keep trying and one day u gonna make it

    Michele Montagna at 2021-07-14T06:10:15Z

    » Stephen Michael Kellat:

    “[...] he community may be beyond hope and lost to QAnon as well as its fellow travelers thanks to FB being the main means of conveying news lately. [...]”

    Damn, modern society is depressing...

    JanKusanagi at 2021-07-14T13:30:29Z

    Stephen Michael Kellat likes this.

    » JanKusanagi:

    “» Stephen Michael Kellat:
    “[...] he community may be beyond hope and lost to QAnon as well as its fellow travelers thanks to FB being the main means of conveying news lately. [...]”
    Damn, modern society is depressing...”

    I'm working in the referenced repo. I had some ideas today at least on making the paper closer to happening by school starting back up.

    Stephen Michael Kellat at 2021-07-14T19:29:13Z

  • Now what?

    2021-07-08T03:55:06Z via Dianara To: Public CC: Followers

    In no particular order:


    ➡ I said over on Twitter that the novella collection on Amazon's Kindle platform will be free on July 8th. It is up to three stories now and people can get all three for free with one click on July 8th. I end up getting $0.00 during that day which amuses me in terms of how Amazon has this all structured. Details here: https://twitter.com/writer_smk/status/1412823235763310594

    ➡ I got a wee bit sick today. That was not fun. The heat is getting to me.

    ➡ The campaign is barely going. You'd have trouble thinking I was running for anything.

    ➡ August 13th is the day that chaos is expected to break out from the cultists. Yes, some knucklehead is propounding that they are going to carry out the glorious restoration of their divinely chosen leader to the executive mansion in my nation's capital on that morning. Considering that that person used to be the front man for a pillow factory they aren't just a random crank but rather a crank with some resources.

    ➡ I gotta work out what the story of Leddis Beauregard Frank happens to be. That would start the ball rolling for the fourth story. Think about the name from a pun context and reduce the middle name to an initial while making the character a southern politico...

  • "Clear And Present Danger To Our National Security" Watch

    2021-07-02T23:56:53Z via Dianara To: Public CC: Followers

    "The Terry & Jesse Show" -- https://www.thestationofthecross.com/shows/the-terry-and-jesse-show-on-air/


    Claims to be Roman Catholic apologia.


    Instead it is COVID-19 anti-vax garbage.


    WHY DO PEOPLE ACCEPT THIS? The majority of local radio in my immediate area are purportedly "Christian Radio". These stations are all preaching against taking coronavirus vaccines, are stating that COVID-19 is no big deal and easily survivable by everyone, stating that none of the COVID-19 deaths reported in the media are real, and worse.


    That the show also dives into claiming that mental illness is actually demonic possession shows me that we have a problem.


    Anybody have money to help liberate the FM band station WMIH from these hucksters? It is here in Ashtabula County. Details about the station here: https://transition.fcc.gov/fcc-bin/fmq?call=WMIH


  • Wrote a blog post!

    2021-06-17T21:06:07Z via Dianara To: Public CC: Followers

    Original at http://coyote.works/complicated-changes-confuse-concerned-citizens.html


    “Allow for miracles but plan for disasters.”

    I tossed that one-liner out there in an interview earlier today. It shows that I’ve been following the news a wee bit. There’s been more going on that directly impacts my situation than I like.

    Previously I have mentioned that I participate in Ashtabula County’s broadband task force. That’s an effort by the county government to try to improve economic development by improving part of our local infrastructure. It has been mentined by local public radio stations looking at how we have problems with broadband in my local area as recently as March of this year.

    That is why a report from Ars Technica by Jon Brodkin might have been confusing to some folks out there that saw it today. If anything I am still baffled by the situation especially when I learned of it on Wednesday from local media sources. Mr. Brodkin reported that the state legislature is proposing to outlaw municipal broadband in Ohio while also prohibiting the continued operation of municipal broadband efforts like FairlawnGig that already exist. Ohio News Connection/Public News Service also talks about the situation a bit.

    Due to the offices of my local state representative and local state senator not being very responsive to any contacts I have not reached out to them. They’re both first-term backbenchers. Nobody in the statehouse press corps has been able to track down who sponsored this particular provision in the omnibus budget bill required to be passed by June 30th to cover the biennium.

    What makes this an emotional whipsaw is that just last month legislation for expanding broadband across the state passed the lower house of the General Assembly by a fairly wide margin per reporting on Cleveland.com. That bill, Amended House Bill 2 of the 134th General Assembly, was signed into law by Governor Mike DeWine and took effect on May 17th. That bill included a twenty million dollar appropriation that grants to communities could be made out of. Originally two hundred and ten million dollars were in the proposal but most of the money was stripped out with a promise that it would be dealt with in the main state budget. I don’t think anybody expected it to be a firm rejection in the main state budget, though.

    We’re allowed to hand money to private entities who have no clear commercial reason to enter some of these communities to provide service. In this county which has a land area half the size of Rhode Island but a population density one-seventh of Rhode Island’s it makes very little commercial sense to build out broadband infrastructure here. Although it is claimed that satellite broadband will make this a non-issue ViaSat doesn’t serve my local area, HughesNet offers expensive yet limited plans that make wireless company hotspot plans seem generous, and Starlink remains in the not-too-distant future for my area.

    I do hope that Lieutenant Governor Jon Husted can convince enough state legislators to back off on this plan. Having a single fund of twenty million dollars for making grants to communities across the state for broadband needs will either run out quickly or result in many communities getting token amounts that they cannot effectively use. That entire fund could be used easily trying to wire up just the rural areas in my county that lack broadband, alas.

    This is not a pretty situation. Within two weeks it will be resolved one way or another. The state’s operating budget must be passed by June 30th. Thankfully this cannot drag on like thing do in the federal legislature.


  • Well, this bodes evil

    2021-06-14T04:16:28Z via Dianara To: Public CC: Followers

    This is a screen cap of the tweet found here: https://twitter.com/JonahDispatch/status/1404263202083442691


    Apparently August 15th is the date starting to circulate in the circles of crazy people for when something may go down. I'm not liking this. If the US-Canada border is open before then perhaps my family and I might take a trip to southwest Ontario.


    No more of this. This garbage must end. These crazy people are becoming a clear and present danger to our national security.

    Such a great scam...

    JanKusanagi at 2021-06-14T12:16:15Z

    Stephen Michael Kellat likes this.

  • Looking at August 2021

    2021-06-03T04:32:43Z via Dianara To: Public CC: Followers

    Apparently David French is getting a twitchy feeling that more violence from Trump supporters is coming. See: https://twitter.com/DavidAFrench/status/1400180342212943873


    The chatter about the miraculous reinstatement of Trump to the presidency in August simply baffles me. See: https://archive.is/zwjn0


    Then again, there is the coup chatter from Mike Flynn that leads me to think David French is likely right.


    I'm looking across the lake and pondering options now.


  • Wrapping Up May 2021

    2021-06-01T04:18:04Z via Identi.ca Web To: Public CC: Followers

    Wrapping up May 2021 in no particular order:


  • Hilarious Misinterpretations...

    2021-05-21T23:23:06Z via Dianara To: Public, Stephen Sekula, Stephen Sekula CC: Followers

    ➡ The new package on CTAN called "codehigh" is not what I thought it might be.

    ➡ The coffee stains package has finally made it onto CTAN here.

    ➡ No, I do not intend to put coffee stains in the next novella to go up on Amazon. I don't think their Print On Demand tech could handle it.

    ➡ I let loose with a Twitter thread discussing why the coronavirus situation in my local area is getting bad. It is a good thing I am fully vaccinated with Pfizer, my parents are fully vaccinated with J&J, and my sisters are fully vaccinated with Moderna.

    ➡The campaign is barely starting and I am getting creeped out by the actions of the national party. I do not have all that much time to decide if I want to bail out on this.

  • Mid-May 2021

    2021-05-15T02:08:25Z via Dianara To: Public CC: Followers

    ➡ Work continues helping different family members consolidate their lives so that they can move out of Ashtabula County.

    ➡ My weight is holding at roughly 185 pounds which puts me at a body mass index of 28.1. The purported median BMI for males in Ohio is 29.4 and for all female Ohioans is 27.4. The purported median BMI for US males is 28.4 while for US females is 26.2. The ultimate target from the GP for a body mass index is 24.9 for me. She figured that would be rough enough to get to rather than worry about anything lower.

    ➡ I wrote an op-ed and submitted it to an Ohio newspaper not located in Ashtabula County. There is actually a good chance that it may get published in print. If it makes it to that publication's website I will post a link.

    ➡ Local weather is improving.

    ➡ I am apparently already a contestant in the Vax-A-Million drawing here in Ohio. This news report about State Representative Powell trying to stop it fails to mention how heavily anti-vaxx she is, though.

    ➡ That I was pondering once again today "going bush" for an extended period anywhere I could outside the USA should indicate that perhaps things remain rather unwell here in this land.

    » Stephen Michael Kellat:

    “[...] am apparently already a contestant in the Vax-A-Million drawing here in Ohio [...]”

    Good luck! 😁

    JanKusanagi at 2021-05-15T03:27:34Z

    Stephen Michael Kellat likes this.

  • 2021-05-12T23:18:10Z via Dianara CC: Public

  • Ending The Week

    2021-05-07T14:24:53Z via Dianara To: Public CC: Followers

    ♫ I'm starting to weigh in below 185 pounds now. Ultimately the goal is to get nearer to a healthy Body Mass Index ("BMI"). One of the big risk factors of the pandemic was/is to have a BMI of 30 or higher. Thankfully I am fully vaccinated but that obesity issue presents problems in so many other areas of life that it has to be dealt with to allow for okay living.


    ♫ I now have an opponent for the general election in November. There is no hurry to start campaigning at the moment.


    ♫ The school district lost on its operating levy question on Tuesday's ballot. They built up quite a bit of ill will in the community. Doing things like randomly buying buildings so as to shut out charter school operators from entering the area while claiming pretextual reasons for the purchase will most definitely annoy voters. If the district was a high-performing district where students were actually learning and growing then I could perhaps understand such actions. The school district has an over five year streak of utterly failing grades on the state performance reports, though! If they have enough money to waste on buying an empty disused Roman Catholic school building that they then decide to do nothing with after 18 months then the plea of poverty falls flat.


    ♫ I am trying to figure out why I cannot get Greenstone Digital Library software to run on a Raspberry Pi. That they ship private libraries makes it not very portable outside x86/amd64 contexts in the first instance.


    ♫ The "Second Reader" is almost done reviewing the third novella.


    ♫ I have a treadmill now. Opportunities are presented thereby.

  • To Kick Off May...

    2021-05-03T13:36:13Z via Dianara To: Public CC: Followers

    ★ I have an election to work Tuesday as a pollworker. Typically in the quadrennial election cycle this is the primary/special election with the absolute worst turnout. Democracy still has to happen, though.


    ★ The Raspberry Pi 4 has been upgraded to the 21.04 version of the Ubuntu flavour that it is running.


    ★ I am looking at taking one of the older Raspberry Pi units and putting either Windows 10 for IOT or NetBSD on it. Some cross-training needs to be done.


    ★ I am trying to get back into "digital libraries" work which means fiddling with Greenstone Digital Library software again.


    The blog at Coyote Works was updated. You can see me mention there the CDC Social Vulnerability Index and how I end up being a bit upset over how poorly my county scores on it. In short we are very highly vulnerable yet our neighboring counties are not.


    ★ My weight loss progress is currently at the point where my recent weigh-ins are bouncing between 185 and 187 pounds. This is good though there is still more work to be done. It really was not all that long ago when I was working as a civil servant weighing 230-245 pounds. That job was not good for my health. I cannot give thanks enough that I am not in that post any more.


    ★ I'm finding again that I dislike using an Android phone.



    » Stephen Michael Kellat:

    “[...] ★ I'm finding again that I dislike using an Android phone [...]”

    Phones suck, PC's FTW 😎

    JanKusanagi at 2021-05-03T14:18:40Z

    Stephen Michael Kellat likes this.

  • General Update

    2021-04-16T02:16:45Z via Identi.ca Web To: Stephen Sekula, Stephen Sekula, Public CC: Followers

    In no particular order:
    • Campaigning goes oddly
      • I’ve been told to hold off for the time being. The other party’s primary isn’t concluded yet.
      • The other party’s candidates are finally doing actual campaign actions. Voter participation in the early voting and absentee balloting is exceptionally light in the ward to the point that there have been a total of two ballots cast in that party’s race.
      • I am going to focus on basically two things.
        • First is roads and their pretty bad shape in town. Fixing them would improve public perception of our community, give us better standing in pursuing economic development, and as a practical matter lead to fewer rough rides for ambulance passengers.
        • Second is getting a railroad station built somehow so that we can ask AMTRAK to have the Lake Shore Limited make a stop here. The track between Cleveland and Erie is one of the longest runs made by an AMTRAK train without a stop.
    • The Ubuntu realm sees not much of a presence by me.
      • I have been relatively busy with face-to-face life.
      • There aren’t really places on the ISO Tracker to report testing images in the Windows Subsystem for Linux.
    • Life has been weird.
      • I’m driving a new-old car after the other one died on me.
      • Weight loss work continues.
      • COVID-19 basically killed any notion of trying to venture out into dating at the moment but not due to social distancing or other protective measures. It shut things down through making so many people locally go nuts. Have I mentioned the militia and anti-vax types my local area is home to?
      • I am making it to church on Sunday mornings
      • Writing is getting done but local publications aren’t buying anything.
        • One of the local newspapers is just barely meeting the definition of a “newspaper of general circulation”
        • The other paper is a weekly newspaper and only has so much space to print so much content
      • Second dose of the Pfizer vaccine is on Monday for me


  • And we're back...

    2021-04-15T04:36:08Z via Identi.ca Web To: Public CC: Followers

    Apparently Identica fell over for a little while and was inaccessible.

    Then again, nobody reads what I write here so the question becomes whether or not Identica falling over matters beyond a select few people.

    murph likes this.

    Scorpio, Scorpio shared this.

  • An Update Miscellany

    2021-04-08T08:43:21Z via Identi.ca Web To: Public CC: Followers

    In no particular order:
    • I despair of the local Republicans. With the state’s ballot access duopoly being what it is I cannot be anything but a Republican or Democrat.
      • Tests like isidewith indicate that I do not line up all that well with either party in terms of what I actually believe.
      • The current issue of The Gazette portrays our local member of the lower house of the state legislature in a very bad light. She is a Republican. I wound up quite horrified at that.
      • I am not evil.
    • “Brother RG Stair” died apparently. A financial crisis looms for the privately owned shortwave broadcast stations in the United States since his Overcomer Ministry provided quite a bit of funding to a number of them. Will WBCQ, WWCR, and WRMI have difficulty staying on the air? Will there be fire sales on airtime? I have no clue.
    • The campaign is pretty much not happening. Why? I have to wait for the present primary to finish up for the Democrats to learn who my challenger is in the general election. The primary has had no campaigning between the two women striving for the Democratic Party’s nomination. I have to tread lightly.
    • Losing weight is rough as my clothes don’t fit. Since I left the old employer I have lost 50 pounds in going from 238.4 to 188.4. I have a minimum of 26 pounds still to lose though apparently 30 or more would be better. My height is 68 inches for those keeping score with BMI calculation.

  • The Axes of Thought

    2021-04-03T16:20:05Z via Identi.ca Web To: Public, Stephen Sekula, Stephen Sekula CC: Followers

    I do find quizzes as to where you fall on the political spectrum to be interesting.  In a state like Ohio you only have the choices of being a Republican or a Democrat.  Although third parties do in fact exist the problem of wanting to be affiliated with any of them results in you showing up as "non-partisan" in the voter records.  We have some very, very tough ballot access laws. 

    I do like the quiz at isidewith at https://www.isidewith.com/political-quiz as it provides not just the US context but other countries.  I have had multiple family members try it and it gives expected results.  When it comes to me, though, the results get very messy.  Remember what I said about the somewhat strict duopoly in Ohio?  Yeah, I am officially an "R" as they are the relatively closest to where I stand on things.  Every time I take the quiz it comes up with at least one third party that I am better aligned with.

    If you take my quiz answers to the US version and then switch the localization to Australia or Canada then I end up fitting in better to a mainstream party somewhere.  That's just weird to me.  Then again my country has increasingly gone mad since I left being a fed so I have trouble recognizing it lately.
  • IMG 1006 JPG

    2021-03-30T20:47:51Z via Dianara To: Public CC: Followers

    I was out in a different section of Indian Trails Park today with the dog doing some photography. The primary campaign is shaping up to be very weird. The two ladies in the Democratic Party's primary aren't really doing anything to campaign. There is no energy being expended on their parts at all except for about ten yard signs put out by one of the two ladies.


    I don't even appear on the ballot as I technically won an unopposed race. I have to wait until May 4th to see who unofficially wins in the Democratic Party primary to know who I am up against. Assuming every presently affiliated Democrat shows up to vote and nobody new pulls a Democratic Party ballot in the primary that is an electorate of 225 people out of the ward's current registered voter total of 2,080. With numbers like this we really, really should consider allowing caucuses. After all, there are only 159 actually affiliated Republicans in the ward. All the rest are unaffiliated with any political party.


  • League of Women Voters Profile Finally Up

    2021-03-22T16:14:45Z via Dianara To: Public CC: Followers

    Since I cannot directly link to it we have to improvise, adapt, and overcome.


    First go to https://onyourballot.vote411.org/


    When asked for an address enter "4717 Main Avenue, Ashtabula, OH, 44004". You may need to click the hamburger menu in the top right to change address to that. Don't worry about this particular address as it is not mine. It is city hall.


    From there you will see the candidates in the two major party primaries. Under Ohio's restrictive ballot access laws there presently are no minor parties such as the Green Party or Libertarian Party with ballot access at this time. If you choose the Democratic Party you can see the two ladies running for that party's nomination. If you choose the other party you would see that I am unopposed and therefore am automatically on the November ballot. I just have to wait for the outcome of May's primary vote to see who my Democratic Party opponent is.


    Please bear in mind that I am not really a Trump supporter. I am not Josh Mandel who apparently is trying for the high score on that front. I miss Dubya.


    As to why I am so worried about the city finances you need merely visit the city finance department page, scroll down to the financial statements, and look at the end of month statement for February. That one shows four program accounts in major deficits. I don't know about you but having the sanitation division running a deficit is kinda sorta a big problem when you're two months into the year when it is funded by user fees rather than general fund tax dollars. American Rescue Plan Act money can't bail that out because it wasn't in the hole in January 2020.



  • Here We Go Again...

    2021-03-17T15:52:00Z via Identi.ca Web To: Public CC: Followers

    In no particular order:
    • Identica took a nap for four days apparently
    • The general practitioner set a minimum goal of losing a minimum of an additional 13 kilos beyond the 11 kilos I have lost in the last year.
      • This would put me at a total of 37 kilos down from my highest weight when I was a working civil servant.
      • I was not well when I was a civil servant.
      • She also did say that she did not recommend my returning to any gym until vaccinated
      • Ultimately the goal is to be at 70-73 kg at a height of roughly 173 cm
    • Vaccination against the coronavirus for me is still a bit of a ways off. I am still not eligible yet in Ohio. My parents are thankfully already done with vaccination and got the Johnson & Johnson shot. My sisters will actually be eligible before me.
    • The campaign for Ashtabula City Council is just weird.
      • In my party primary I am unopposed so I am considered to have won my primary by operation of law. I can’t start campaigning for the general election in November as people might get confused with the primary election in May. Since I am unopposed in May and there are no other party primaries in the ward in May the question about me won’t even appear on the ballot!
      • In the Democratic Party’s primary one of the candidates is starting putting out yard signs. The problem is that this is an economically distressed ward and is considered in the city to have more than a few “bad neighborhood” areas. Those areas are also high in minority populations. Oddly enough that candidate has yet to put any yard signs out in those minority areas but does have her signs in areas where mostly white people reside. That’s certainly not on brand for a Democratic Party candidate in this day and age.
      • Campaigning begins in earnest after May 4th for me, I think.
    • The weather is improving slowly but surely locally
    • The newspaper design project continues to be built at https://code.launchpad.net/~skellat/+git/auto-newspaper and is basically showing that something can be semi-automatically produced layout-wise in a 19th century style. If The Star Beacon doesn’t stop falling apart as a newspaper then it looks like that project has to move forward. For a daily newspaper they’ve apparently given up on reporting things on a timely basis now.
    • Finance is a weird thing right now.

  • Saturday

    2021-03-13T16:19:43Z via Dianara To: Public CC: Followers


    I had a chance to go over the numbers for the American Rescue Plan Act distributions to communities. Due to the restrictions placed on the usage of the money the whole three and a half million dollars being allocated to Ashtabula City might not actually be usable. This means the budget problems may persist here.