Saturday, March 17, 2007


Behind the scenes: The curtain rustles ...

Rumor has it that, even though DC is "awash" in scandal and debate on the war, etc., there is some back-door maneuvering in the halls of Congress on the issues of RRW and LANL management problems. Keep your eyes posted on the blog; if anything important happens on these fronts, we'll report it.


P.S. Behind the scenes, unknown to the audience, the faint rustling in the curtains was caused when the stagehands almost simultaneously performed a faith-based face-plant.

And from an anonymous contributor from earlier on this blog:

Thank goodness for this blog. Without it the Lab workforce would be more zombe-like than it already is...nodding agreement to everything management spews without even hearing, much less understanding. Just so long as we keep our benefits, our highly compensated jobs, and our heads attached we hardly notice the rest of the world. This blog is an intrusion into our mere existence, which means it wakes us up once in awhile to reality. And perhaps that's the crux of the issue; we don't like dealing with reality.

--30 years and barely hanging on to sanity

And yet another earlier comment of relevance:

Once upon a time, in a land far, far away (shit; maybe a whole f*cking Galaxy away), there was a hero of the Livermore scientific staff by the name of Hugh Dewitt. He took on Hazel O'Leary; he took on Crazy Eddie Teller; he took on a number of faceless LLNL Directors; he managed to get his security clearance re-instated; he belonged to Livermore's Union; moreover, he was a REAL scientist. What happened to guys like him, who had two functioning balls? At Los Alamos, they appear to be dead -- an extinct species. Tell me if I'm wrong, but I bet you either can't, or you won't.

-Son of Oppy

Nothing to see here. Move along.
It would seem that Pat the Dog has wandered off the reservation. The topics are now far afield of things important to LANL employees. The lack of replies to these topics seem to underscore this trend....
It seems you are correct. The more this blog continue to blast the shorts off of every authoritative establishment it comes in contact with, and continues to point fingers in all directions except themselves; the less people are going to participate. It's time to either accept what LANS has to offer or pack up your belonging and move on to some place you think you'll be happy, for the benefit of all concerned.
Again can we get back on track. I want to know about LANS. I don't care about Republicans or Democrats or ??? Let's get back to what this blog was supposed to be -a source of info and speculation in the dirth of silence.

LANS puts out no information. I go through all the orgs once a week just to see if anyone has had an all hands or a newsletter with info. Nada.. Schlacter in P-div puts out a decent weekly blurp with some info we don't hear. He at least talks about WFM and how it's real in P div.

Latest rumor: LANS asked DOE to allow a RIF. DOE approved. 1200-1600 over next year. 1/3 on 1 June, 1/3 on start of FY 08, and 1/3 end of FY 08.

Does a RIF mean a RIF or does it mean an outsourcing of people which doesn't look like a RIF but really is one?

Weirich, Comforce, Butler contracts extended till end of year.

Anything else out there?

So - here's fodder to blast away on. But please get back to LANS issues and not political issues.

March 15
The Best of the Best in the U.S Nuclear Arsenal

The W88 is a warhead used by the Navy on the Trident II missile. The W-88 is a miniaturized, tapered thermonuclear warhead. It is the United States’ most sophisticated strategic thermonuclear weapon. In the US arsenal, the W-88 warhead is mated to the D-5 submarine-launched ballistic missile carried aboard the Trident nuclear submarine. The Los Alamos National Laboratory program to develop the W88 warhead for the Trident II 5D missile was completed in 1989. The W88 is one of two types of warheads on US submarine launched missiles. There are now nearly 400 W88 warheads in the stockpile and more than 3,000 W76s, the other warhead on US submarine launched missiles. During the investigation into alleged Chinese espionage against the US nuclear weapons programs, it was disclosed that modern US hydrogen bombs use a non-spherical core. This is apparently a key technique in building miniaturized warheads. Two-point detonation is used on warheads like the W88. The W-88 has a non-spherical primary [the fission atomic trigger], a configuration first used in the W47. The primary is situated in the nosecone's narrow forward end [an arrangement used previously in some but not all American warheads]. The lithium fuel of the secondary has a spherical shape.

The deployment of W88 warheads on the Trident D-5 missiles was slowed by the closure of the Rocky Flats plutonium processing plant in November 1989 due to safety and environmental concerns. At the time, independent unofficial esimates were that only 400 Mk 88s had been produced before the plant closed, versus the originally planned. Rear Admiral Raymond G. Jones Jr. has stated that there are enough Mark-5/W88 warheads to outfit four east-coast Trident submarines, with the remainder loaded 100-kiloton Mark-4/W76 warheads. This would imply that a total of nearly 800 of the W88 weapons had been produced, with each submarined loaded with 192 warheads [8 each on 24 missiles].

The FY2003 NNSA budget request provided for adding as many as 10 new W88 warheads to the stockpile per year beginning as early as 2007. In 2003 Los Alamos delivered the first certifiable W88 pit from the interim pit production capability. This was the first certifiable pit made by the United States since the shut down of Rocky Flats in 1989.

In 1990 a panel established by the House Armed Services Committee and chaired by Dr. Sydney Drell of Stanford found that there was a significant danger that a W-88 warhead would detonate by accident. There were three serious design issues with the W88, according to the "Report of the Panel on Nuclear Weapons Safety," written by Sidney Drell, John Foster, and Charles Townes for the House Armed Services Committee, completed in December 1990.

* First, the warheads on the D-5 are mounted in close proximity to the rocket motor, arranged in a circle around the missile's third stage. The warheads on other American ballistic missiles are mounted on a platform which provides some insulating material between the warheads and a fuel fire. The rocket motors use a highly volatile 1.1 class propellant, which can both burn and explode [it is almost impossible to detonate a 1.3 class propellant].
* Second, W88 designers had to choose whether to use the traditional high explosives [HE], or the safer insensitive high explosive [IHE], which possess a unique insensitivity to certain abnormal environments, such as fires, crashes or unexpected impacts. Unlike the conventional explosive, IHE is extremely unlikely to detonate in any of these crises. It also is not used in the D-5 missile system.
* Third, the Drell Panel was also concerned that in choosing the plutonium pit in the W88 warhead did not include Fire Resistant Pit which includes materials which can withstand temperatures of 1000 degrees Fahrenheit [however, since rocket fuel burns at 2000 degrees Fahrenheit, the Fire Resistant Pit isn't much safer than a regular pit when used in a warhead carried by a missile].

The Navy implemented Drell Panel recommendations to change Trident-II missile handling procedures, and the Department of Energy continues to improve the three-dimensional computer codes to predict warhead behavior in abnormal environments. The W88/Trident-II system was included in a Special Stockpile Improvement Review undertaken by the Nuclear Weapons Council.

Flight tests involve the actual dropping or launching of a weapon from which the nuclear components have been removed. DOE uses specially designed equipment—referred to as telemetry packages—to test the integration and functioning of the weapon’s electrical and mechanical subsystems. Only 3 W88 stockpile flight tests (of the 12 planned) were conducted during the 4-year period from fiscal year 1992 through 1995. Flight testing of W88 warheads taken from the stockpile was halted for more than 1 year because an important safety study required for disassembly and inspection of the warhead at DOE’s Pantex plant lacked approval. A Nuclear Explosive Safety Study is required for each weapon type before DOE’s Pantex Plant can disassemble and inspect a weapon selected for testing. Without disassembly and inspection capability, surveillance tests, including flight tests of sample warheads from the stockpile (the nuclear components must be removed and replaced by the telemetry equipment), cannot be conducted. DOE and national laboratory officials were not concerned about the reliability of the W88 warhead because they have collected considerable data over the past few years by testing W88 warheads that had never been placed in the stockpile. Because the W88 warhead is a relatively new weapon, DOE officials believe that the information from these “new material” tests provides good reliability data.

During the mid-1990s the W88 warhead was considered by DOE to be of concern in relation to nonnuclear systems laboratory tests. These tests involve testing the nonnuclear systems—such as the radar systems and fuzes—in the weapon to detect defects due to handling, aging, manufacturing, or design. DOE officials said the Department should have conducted about 28 laboratory tests, but over during the 4-year period from fiscal year 1992 through 1995, only 15 (or 54 percent) tests were performed. According to DOE and national laboratory officials, the tests were not conducted because of the absence of an approved safety study at Pantex.

In 1999 it was reported that China had received secret design information for the most modern U.S. nuclear warhead—the W88 warhead, which sits atop the submarine-launched Trident II ballistic missile, and un-named US officials said "the top suspect is an American scientist working at a U.S. Department of Energy weapons laboratory." Edward Curran, the Energy Department’s new counterintelligence director, said that "Department labs ‘have the best computers and the smartest scientists in the world . . . without a question they are the No. 1 target’ for foreign countries trying to steal U.S. technology." On 09 March 1999 Wen Ho Lee, a Chinese-American computer scientist who worked at the Los Alamos National Laboratory in New Mexico, was fired by the United States Energy department on suspicion of stealing nuclear secrets.

The abrupt closure of the Rocky Flats Plant in 1989 stopped production of W88 pits before sufficient pits were produced to meet the stockpile surveillance requirements for the projected 20-year design life of the W88 warhead. A pit is the fissile core of a nuclear weapon’s physics package. In the near term, DOE's Pit Manufacturing and Certification Campaign is focused mainly on W88 pit manufacturing and certification and planning for a Modern Pit Facility. However, in addition to meeting the W88 surveillance requirements, the NNSA is committed “to reestablishing and maintaining sufficient levels of production to support requirements for the safety, reliability, and performance of United States nuclear weapons” as delineated in the January 26, 1996, START II Treaty Ratification Text.

As of 2001 the United States was the only nuclear weapons state that cannot produce plutonium pits for its weapons. Milestones continued to slip for production and certification of a plutonium pit for a W88 warhead at the interim Los Alamos TA-55 facility. Conceptual design work for an adequate long-term facility continues to be delayed.

Production and certification of plutonium pits remain congressional interest items. For the FY2002 pit manufacturing and certification campaign, the House Armed Services Committee recommended the budget request of $128.5 million, including $122.5 million for W88 pit manufacturing and certification, $4.0 million to begin the task of understanding manufacturing and certification requirements for other stockpile warheads, and $2.0 million to support pre-conceptual design activities in support of a modern pit facility. Only one W88 warhead surveillance pit remained for destructive testing purposes but good progress was being made toward establishing a limited manufacturing capability at Los Alamos National Laboratory, with production of certifiable pits scheduled to begin in fiscal year 2003. In contrast, W88 pit certification has slipped from fiscal year 2007 to fiscal year 2009, with no commitment to meeting the latter date. This reflected both the difficulty of certifying a pit with extremely high confidence in the absence of nuclear testing, as well as the potential national security consequences of a failure in this area.

In the absence of nuclear testing, the fabrication and certification of pits that meet quality requirements for the nuclear weapon stockpile war reserve remains a major challenge. The W88 Pit Manufacturing and Certification Integrated Project Plan, March 2001, has identified approximately 18,000 activities and 350 individual work packages to complete the pit production and certification task reflecting the magnitude of this major challenge.

The goals of the campaign are to:

* Manufacture a certifiable W88 pit by the end of FY 2003;
* Establish a limited (10 pit/year) production capability for W88 pits by 2007 to meet the programmatic needs of the DoD;
* Establish the certification requirements and plan and implement the activities required to certify a W88 pit built at LANL without underground nuclear testing by FY 2009, with a goal of achieving an earlier date of FY 2007;
* Reestablish the capability to manufacture all pit types within the stockpile; and
* Plan the design and construction of a Modern Pit Facility to support long term pit manufacturing.

The early years of the pit project are dominated by manufacturing process development for the W88 pit. During this period, certification tests are focused on examining fundamental plutonium properties and developing an approach to certification without nuclear testing. Following successful completion of process development pits and establishment of the requisite quality assurance infrastructure, the first certifiable pit will be fabricated and followed by the fabrication of qualification and production pits. During the ensuing qualification period, certifiable pits will be manufactured at LANL for use in experiments to demonstrate equivalence with Rocky Flats produced pits. A minimum set of certification experiments to determine product equivalency have been identified.

Development pits will be manufactured while manufacturing processes are defined and qualified. As a part of reestablishing the capability to manufacture war reserve pits, the production controls and quality infrastructure necessary to meet quality requirements and consistency of product will be established. Once completed, the first Qualification Pit will be manufactured as a “certifiable” pit. Further Qualification Pits will be manufactured to support engineering and physics testing for certification of the manufactured pits.

To confirm nuclear performance of the W88 pit without underground nuclear testing, the W88 Pit Manufacturing and Certification Integrated Project Plan (W88 PMCIPP), March 2001, identifies the required engineering tests, physics experiments, dynamic experiments and integral experiments. A thorough peer review of the plan and activities required for W88 pit certification and manufacturing will be performed. Engineering tests will be identified and scheduled for use in evaluating: the intrinsic radiation signature. plutonium hydriding structural response to environments delineated in the Stockpile-to-Target-Sequence including deployment and flight thermal and mechanical environments, pressure effects, and long-term material compatibility Physics laboratory experiments will be planned and scheduled to confirm that Los Alamos National Laboratory plutonium fabrication techniques produce equivalent compositions, microstructures and mechanical properties when compared to Rocky Flats manufactured material. Data from these material property experiments will be used to confirm consistent production results; to improve physics models used in ASC simulation codes; and to help predict and compare military performance. Integral tests will include explosively driven experiments to extrapolate material performance models in more realistic weapons environments, provide data to compare Rocky Flats material properties to LANL material properties, and to assist in development of advanced diagnostic techniques for more complex follow-on experiments. Additional integral dynamic tests will use actual geometry experiments to quantify performance differences that may result from differences in manufacturing between Rocky Flats and LANL. These experiments will also be the principal basis for computational ties to the prior nuclear test database.

Pit manufacturing and certification activities not specifically supporting the W88 are conducted in the third element of the restructured campaign. These activities include identifying and scheduling the reestablishment of key manufacturing technologies for the W87 and B61-7 pits which, together with the W88, span technical variations of pits within the stockpile. This activity also provides technology development spinoff for the Modern Pit Facility.

The limited manufacturing capacity being established to support the W88 requirements is insufficient to meet manufacturing requirements for the long term support of the stockpile. In addition, the capability to manufacture pits is essential to replace pits that are destructively evaluated as part of surveillance activities or to replace pits that have exhibited unacceptable aging effects. Planning for a modern pit facility with the capability to meet requirements is essential to establish a viable readiness posture. The conceptual design scheduled to begin in early FY 2002, subsequent to a critical decision validating the mission need, will be postponed. The FY 2003 budget request would allow for continued planning activities.

In mid-2003 the Department of Energy’s (DOE) Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) successfully made the first nuclear weapons “pit” in 14 years that meets specifications for use in the U.S. stockpile. The plutonium pit, called Qual-1 because it was built with and fully met qualified processes, is for the W88 warhead, which is carried on the Trident II D5 Submarine-Launched Cruise Missile, a cornerstone of the US nuclear deterrent. The six-year effort at LANL’s plutonium processing facility restores a US capability lost when DOE’s Rocky Flats Plant shut down in 1989. DOE identified LANL as the site to make nuclear weapon pits through the 1996 Stockpile Stewardship and Management Environmental Impact Statement.

Under the W88 Pit Manufacturing and Certification Integrated Project Plan, the major focus of FY 2004 activities is preparation for integral experiments in FY 2005. The experiments have been re-baselined to support the acceleration of W88 pit certification from FY 2009 to FY 2007. Following passage of the FY 2003 appropriation,this schedule will be reviewed. FY 2004 efforts will focus on the following activities to support pit certification.Engineering tests will be identified and scheduled for use in evaluating: the intrinsic radiation signature; plutonium hydriding; structural response to environments delineated in the Stockpile-to-Target-Sequence including deployment and flight thermal and mechanical environments;pressure effects; and long-term material compatibility. Physics laboratory experiments will be planned and scheduled to confirm that LANL plutonium fabrication techniques produce equivalent compositions,microstructures and mechanical properties when compared to Rocky Flats manufactured material. Data from these material property experiments will be used to confirm consistent production results; to improve physics models used in Advanced Simulation and Computing simulation codes; and to help predict and confirm military performance. Preparations for two major integral tests will be finalized in FY 2004. The tests will include explosively driven experiments to extrapolate material performance models in more realistic weapons environments, provide data to compare Rocky Flats material properties to LANL material properties,and to assist in development of advanced diagnostic techniques for more complex follow-on experiments. The increase in FY 2004 funding reflects increased work scope on subcritical and dynamic experiments to prepare for additional integral dynamic tests which will quantify performance differences that may result from differences in manufacturing processes between Rocky Flats and LANL. These experiments will also be the principal basis for computational ties to the prior nuclear test database.

The United States learned about the Chinese theft of the W-88 Trident D-5 warhead information, as well as about the theft of information regarding several other thermonuclear weapons, in 1995. A “walk-in” approached the Central Intelligence Agency outside the PRC and provided an official PRC document classified “Secret” that contained specific design information on the W-88 Trident D-5, and technical information on other thermonuclear warheads. The CIA later determined that the “walk-in” was directed by the PRC intelligence services. Nonetheless, CIA and other Intelligence Community analysts that reviewed the document concluded that it contained U.S. warhead design information.

The PRC has the infrastructure and technical ability to use elements of the stolen U.S. warhead design information in the PLA’s next generation of ther-monuclear weapons. If the PRC attempted to deploy an exact replica of the US W-88 Trident D-5 warhead, it would face considerable technical challenges. However, the PRC could build modern thermonuclear warheads based on stolen US design information, including the stolen W-88 design information, using processes similar to those developed or available in a modern aerospace or precision guided munitions industry.
Perhaps this is an explanation why LANL has been put on the corporate leash (sorry for using the "L" word Pat). Corporate "science" tends to conclude whatever the corporate line is.,0,7924177.story?coll=la-opinion-rightrail

Can Washington get smart about science?

How Congress can safeguard science from distortion, something of which both parties are historically guilty.
By Chris Mooney and Alan Sokal, CHRIS MOONEY is the Washington correspondent for Seed magazine and the author of "The Republican War on Science." ALAN SOKAL is a professor of physics at New York University and the coauthor of "Fashi
February 4, 2007

By beginning to investigate the Bush administration's interference with scientists' work on global warming, the Democratic Congress has embarked on a key task: restoring respect for science — and more generally, for evidence and reason — in the federal government.

That we need such reform, and from Democrats, is a historic irony, because it's the Republicans who have often tried to paint themselves as defenders of "sound science" against ideologically motivated attacks.

In the 1990s, conservatives such as Dinesh D'Souza, Gertrude Himmelfarb and Roger Kimball wrote best-selling jeremiads attacking postmodernist academics who, they insisted, were taking over American universities and subverting the standards of scholarship. Although much exaggerated, this contained a grain of truth. Some self-described leftist academics did seem determined to reduce the real world to mere "discourse." No worldview, they insisted, could be considered objectively more valid or factual than any other. Even the findings of science were described as reflecting societal conditions and struggles for power and dominance rather than something true about the nature of the world.

One of us — Sokal — was sufficiently disturbed by these trends to try an unorthodox experiment: write a parody of postmodern science criticism to see whether a trendy academic journal would accept it as a serious scholarly article. Asserting up front that "physical 'reality' [note the scare quotes] … is at bottom a social and linguistic construct," Sokal averred that the latest conceptions of quantum gravity support deconstructive literary theory, Lacanian psychoanalysis, "postmodernist epistemology" and, of course, progressive politics. The cultural-studies journal Social Text ate it up.

After Sokal revealed his hoax in the magazine Lingua Franca, a debate exploded about the nature of science and rationality, popularly known as the "science wars." It pitted scientists and their staunch defenders within and outside of the academic community — spanning the political spectrum from left to right — against a band of intellectuals from the humanities, virtually all of them situated on the left.

Sokal took on his postmodernist colleagues because he feared that the rejection of a rigorous, evidence-based standard for assessing claims of purported fact would disarm us not only in the face of quack medical remedies or alleged paranormal occurrences, but also when confronted by distortions of scientific information having major public-policy implications. A classic example is the tobacco industry's well-documented campaign to sow doubts about the health risks of smoking. Another is the interminable push by religious fundamentalists to undermine the teaching of evolution in American schools.

As these cases suggest, attacks on science by ideologues and special interests have a long history in this country. A stance of postmodernist relativism — or, on the part of the media, of giving "equal time" to unequally substantiated viewpoints — weakens us in the face of such strategic campaigns to undercut well-established knowledge.

But the abuse of science has lately materialized in an even more disturbing form, this time within the corridors of our own government. Driven by the Bush administration and its congressional allies, the new American "science wars" have reached an alarming stage.

HOW AND WHY did the science wars move out of academia and reemerge in Washington, with political poles reversed? During the Clinton years, many of the worst science abusers — such as anti-evolution fundamentalists — remained politically out in the cold, at least at the federal level. That began to change in 1994, as the Gingrich Republicans, highly sympathetic to the party's emerging socially conservative "base" and to the interests of private industry, laid claim to Congress.

They proceeded to attack evidence demonstrating a human role in climate change, all as well as in the depletion of the ozone layer as part of a sweeping attempt to undermine environmental regulation. Simultaneously, they dismantled Congress' world-renowned scientific advisory body, the Office of Technology Assessment, which had provided our elected representatives with reliable scientific counsel for more than two decades.

Meanwhile, the focus on the academic left's undermining of science following the Sokal hoax was generating worthwhile debates and even real soul-searching. For instance, the prominent French sociologist of science, Bruno Latour, has wondered whether his earlier work questioning the objectivity of scientific knowledge went too far: "Was I wrong to participate in the invention of this field known as science studies? Is it enough to say that we did not really mean what we meant?"

In truth, there was nothing wrong with inventing science studies; the error was to leap from the valid observation that science arises in a social context to the extreme conclusion that it is nothing more than politics in disguise.

Such introspection on the academic left has been a heartening sign, and the pronouncements of extreme relativism have subsided significantly in recent years. This frees up defenders of science to combat the enemy on our other flank: an unholy (and uneasy) alliance of economically driven attacks on science (on issues such as global climate change, mercury pollution and what constitutes a good diet) and theologically impelled ones (in areas such as evolution, reproductive health and embryonic stem cell research).

The potency of this combination has become apparent during the six years of the Bush administration, as many if not most scientific agencies of our government have become embroiled in scandals involving the misrepresentation or suppression of scientific information, gag orders on scientist employees, or other interferences with the processes by which science feeds into decision-making. Tracing these intrusions back to their source, we almost always uncover the same pattern: It concerns an issue in which one of the two principal constituencies of the current administration — religious conservatives or big corporations — has a vested interest.

Perhaps they wish to disrupt the path of Plan B emergency contraception (the "morning-after" pill) through the Food and Drug Administration on its way to over-the-counter availability. Or perhaps they don't like the way global warming has been discussed in government documents.

That's at the core of a case recently investigated by the new Congress: A lawyer who had formerly worked for the American Petroleum Institute and had moved to the Bush White House's Council on Environmental Quality was accused in 2005 of editing government climate science reports in such a way as to raise doubts about global warming and downplay the strong consensus of mainstream scientists. Following the initial scandal, the lawyer went to work for Exxon Mobil Corp.

In these and countless other cases, members of the Bush administration appear to have efficiently channeled their constituents' grudges, leading to a distortion of the scientific evidence and a steady stream of scandals.

TO ADDRESS this new crisis over the relationship between science and politics, we propose a combination of political activism and institutional reform. Congress needs to establish safeguards to protect the integrity of scientific information in Washington — strong whistle-blower protections for scientists who work in government agencies would be a good start.

We also need a strengthening of the government scientific advisory apparatus, starting with the revival of the Office of Technology Assessment. And we need congressional committees to continue with their investigations of cases of science abuse within the Bush administration, in order to learn what other reforms are necessary.

At the same time, journalists and citizens must renounce a lazy "on the one hand, on the other hand" approach and start analyzing critically the quality of the evidence. For, in the end, all of us — conservative or liberal, believer or atheist — must share the same real world. Antibiotic-resistant bacteria do not spare deniers of evolution, and global climate change will not spare any of us. As physicist Richard Feynman wrote in connection with the space shuttle Challenger disaster, "nature cannot be fooled."

To avoid nature's punishment, we must take steps now to restore reality-based government.
Here's a big picture for you:

The Republican War on Science
by Chris Mooney
Do you really think people are going to read these last few entries. I didn't. What I saw was that with these long history entires was an answer to the person that asked for things to get back on track. As he or she and I can see, you refuse. Have a great life at LANL and may you get everything you want . That RIF is coming very soon.May the whinning continue.
Good rustling or bad rustling?
Just keep staring at the blinding lights. Let's pretend its the shining lights off Broadway and we're still being basted with the applause of the Mahattan Project days. Let's pretend it's not the lights of a speeding semi truck rushing towards us. June 1, 2007 is right around the corner. Might want to start sucking up to the boss. Let the layoffs begin!
The Law of Rules: This is all about what is happening to LANL at the present time, not in past..not in the future, "Yes we had a good past" but that is coming to an end , so far as functioning as a National Laboratory...LANS will continue to play a supporting role, the workforce will be sbstantually reduced, so that even in the future we would not have the capability to compete with the other Lab's in the complex...
Don't you get it? This is a planned execution of a clereverly devised stratagy, thought up by our Congress people, and endoursed by our management. Right now no one is sure what role LANL will play "as a long term partner" in the Weapons Complex, that is still being considered. It has in the core of it's future, the Complex 2030 plan, and one component of that plan is the "Pit Production" capability, which may or may not be at LANL, the footprint at LANL will be only a "paw print" with-in the next few years, mostly due to the overall lay-out of the Los Alamos complex,43 (square acres)... and because of the independent little Kingdoms that have been built at each Division and the smaller outposts that are the Groups, none of these Kingdoms speak to each other , but are highly competivitive in terms of screweing each other and a lot of behind the scenes maneuvering , instead of working togerther. Management is totally at fault for allowing theses types of independent Kings to prosper. Each Kingdom is mutually exclusive, no one has the same rules and reg's as another, and the small Kings decide what Directivies their kingdom will follow, some they follow others they place in the shit-can. Employee's transfering from one Kingdom to another are suprized to learn that the rules in the new Kindom regarding Security and Saftey is completely at odds with the rules of the prior Kingdom..from which they came. But now one golden rule has been adopted for all to abide by, and that rule is: "If you break any of the rules you will be fired"
This rule was in put in place as a "catch-all" rule to show DOE that our Management is serious about "Rules". But be careful what rules you follow, some are designed to "catch you" ....
i agree with the "kingdom" situation. it's totally ridiculous to continue to allow that to happen. senior managers have no balls when it comes to telling ADs to sit down, shut up, and get with the program.
It is obvious that management authority needs to be transferred to someone who will perform their duties. Any ideas on how to accomplish this?
Anonymous (3/16/2007 6:06 AM) sez:

"Do you really think people are going to read these last few entries.[no question mark] I didn't. What I saw was that with these long history entires [sic] was an answer to the person that asked for things to get back on track. As he or she and I can see, you refuse. Have a great life at LANL and may you get everything you want .[extra space before period] That RIF is coming very soon.[no extra space after period]May the whinning [sic] continue."

-Dumbed down. Unable to concentrate beyond a sound bite. A Gen X-er? Incompetent rapper? Too much body metal? Justification for daily drug tests?

Conclusion: Probably not a LANL scientist. Pray for us in the hour of our need.

Actually - we are LANL scientists. Anyone who has been here <10 years just doesn't have a clue on where we came from and where we are going. I came when this place was LASL, run by AEC and ERDA. We had a mission. We were a 6000 person lab, not 12000.

I still say - this blog is off track. It is now just entertainment, not information. Doug was 10X the blog master.

If you can't get this back on track then I agree. You are a Gen-Xer or Yer. Self serving. Not for what blogs are supposed to be about.

We used to have topics that had 20 or 30 comments and they came quickly. Now there are 2 or 3 comments and they take days to get there.
Absolutely agree, 3/18 6:08 pm,

Pat has refused to post my last few messages about dilution of the blog's purpose, deviaton from Doug's intent, and the daily influx of Pat's own biased political agenda. No wonder people are staying away in droves.

I grew up actually believing in "Truth, Justice, and the American way." Apparently, none are valued or welcome here. (Let's see if this makes it to the thread.)
OK, Mr. "Truth, Justice, and the American Way." You're on your own, as of April 2. Let's see what you do with YOUR blog! I can't wait to try to post a comment there. I just f*cking can't wait ... As John McLaughlin used to say: "Bye, BYE!"

-Pat, the patient Dog

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