BLOG purpose

This BLOG is for LLNL present and past employees, friends of LLNL and anyone impacted by the privatization of the Lab to express their opinions and expose the waste, wrongdoing and any kind of injustice against employees and taxpayers by LLNS/DOE/NNSA. The opinions stated are personal opinions. Therefore, The BLOG author may or may not agree with them before making the decision to post them. Comments not conforming to BLOG rules are deleted. Blog authors serve as moderators. For new topics or suggestions, email jlscoob5@gmail.com

Friday, March 25, 2016

Funding Asked for NIF

http://m.independentnews.com/labs_link/funding-asked-for-nif/article_cbf61290-f13f-11e5-8835-f7b5a99cdbb4.html?mode=jqm

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Doublespeak from LANL Director in public meeting on safety

'Asked by the board if issues regarding whistleblower protections and workers’ concerns reporting problems at the lab had been addressed, lab Director Charlie McMillan said, “I won’t say it has been fixed or unfixed — our performance is on a continuum and we are set about to improve it.” '

http://www.santafenewmexican.com/news/local_news/at-forum-lanl-officials-admit-to-struggling-with-safety-issues/article_0624660d-c992-5073-8fae-68cfe2f7ce6c.html

GAO report on whistleblower retaliation

GAO investigators to release a report on whistleblower retaliation by DOE and its contractors this Spring 2016 

http://www.abqjournal.com/740448/news/nm-news/nuclear-workers-say-they-were-retaliated-against-for-exposing-wrongdoing-2.html

What led to the WIPP waste explosion

Excellent summary of what led to the WIPP waste explosion


"...the lab’s belief in its own “exceptionalism” is the problem and that LANL feels it doesn’t have to follow DOE rules."

http://www.abqjournal.com/744791/news/los-alamos-lab-officials-outline-safety-program.html

Sunday, March 20, 2016

NIF

Will the NIF ever achieve break even or is that no longer a realistic goal?

Classified document handling guidelines

Will classified document handling guidelines and penalities be superceded when the new President is crowned? 

In particlar will incorrectly transferring 1800 currently classified emails without ADC, review and release as well as up to 25 TS, become the threshold for a enforcing misdemeanor? 

Does this softening apply to othrt misdemeanors as well?

Friday, March 18, 2016

Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Retirees benefits under a new contractor

Doesn't the UC Retirees Group have a valid concern? Will a new contractor "with no ties to past employees" offer little or no healthcare support to retirees? If a LANS or LLNS employee activates his or her pension within 120 days of retirement to maintain funded medical coverage by the contractor, and medical coverage in retirement is subsequently dropped by any current or subsequent contractor, wouldn't that be a breach of contract?

Tuesday, March 15, 2016

More problems at LANL

A new article in the New Mexican "Federal audit finds more management problems at LANL" describes a DOE audit of health and safety issues at LANL. 

http://www.santafenewmexican.com/news/local_news/federal-audit-finds-more-management-problems-at-lanl/article_bb9add0f-cc21-5306-ad42-fa02c9630d91.html

It explains that "Without understanding the causes of such problems, managers can’t come up with the right fixes." Further "the reluctance of upper-level managers to listen to concerns from workers" was part of the cause of the WIPP accident but then went on to say that, "The auditors did find that a program established by lab managers to handle employee concerns was 'generally effective.'” Perhaps they should look into the creative fiction in reports in that program for a clue about why it might not be as effective as it and LANS claim it to be.

The bottom line is employees know never to say "no," question or to complain to a manager. This was not such a severe problem under UC but managers who started under UC and still at LANL have learned to adapt to the way things are done in the corporate, for-profit world. As managers have less and less expertise and no tolerance for technical detail, questions, or careful consideration, things get more and more dangerous.

A Critical Audit of Los Alamos Finds Echoes in Livermore

An article in The Independent, http://www.independentnews.com/news/a-critical-audit-of-los-alamos-finds-echoes-in-livermore/article_c19e060a-e63a-11e5-ad0f-d757be83e00a.html, point out:

"This view corresponds to a common observation among LLNL managers and retirees following the change to a for-profit contract. They conclude that Bechtel was placing high priced managers at the Laboratory to give them a place to rest for several months between overseas contract assignments that would be important to their careers."

Guess this is why some people on this blog seem so happy with the Bechtel managers at LLNL or is it just the Bechtel people on the blog?

Friday, March 11, 2016

Bechtel Spotlighted In New Book


http://www.ladailypost.com/content/bechtel-spotlighted-new-book










According to Denton, Bechtel perfected a mechanism for success that has been widely adopted in the military-industrial complex. This was the famous “revolving door” that moved top officials back and forth from position of responsibility inside the government to positions of decisive influence outside the government.

Denton said she was surprised to discover how little Americans know about the privatization that has swept up the national laboratories, which began recasting themselves as the nuclear weapons enterprise, rather than the nuclear weapons complex in the last decade. “What should the relationship be between private industry and the government?” she asks.

Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Defense Board hearing on TRU waste

Defense Board hearing on TRU waste

Could be exciting to hear how they plan to address this LANL debacle.


http://www.dnfsb.gov/sites/default/files/Board%20Activities/Public%20Hearings/2016/Closed%20Meeting,%20March%2022,%202016%20from%205:00%20pm-9:00%20pm/LANL%20Agenda%20MARCH%2022%202016.pdf

NNSA not asking for enough money

NNSA not asking for enough money to modernize the fleet

http://www.gao.gov/assets/680/675622.pdf

Based on their track record of running projects, it is less about the funds available and more about the lack of qualified leadership to execute the work.

Addicted to Los Alamos

Addicted to Los Alamos:
 http://www.theamericanconservative.com/articles/addicted-to-los-alamos/

Tuesday, March 8, 2016

LLNL annual evaluation

When is the LLNL annual evaluation going to be released?

There were indications that it was scheduled to be posted weeks ago, but it never showed up from NNSA. One suggestion for the delay was that LANL lawyers had filed some type of protest and that had delayed all of the reports from being released. If correct, that is so true to form for LANL to screw over the entire NWC yet again.

Monday, March 7, 2016

Beth Sellers anniversary

Beth Sellers anniversary

Charlie needs to pass out some awards for ethical behavior to mark the date.

http://www.abqjournal.com/364443/abqnewsseeker/deputy-director-of-los-alamos-national-laboratory-resigns-over-conflict-of-interest-in-consulting-contract.html

Impact of social media on LANS/LLNS PR

How has social media (like this blog) altered LANSLLNS public relations and employee relations strategy?

Saturday, March 5, 2016

What went wrong with the LANL/LLNL contract.

Physics Today has an article about what went wrong with the LANL/LLNL contract. 
http://scitation.aip.org/content/aip/magazine/physicstoday/article/69/3/10.1063/PT.3.3103

It has a lot of comments from Tyler Przybylek and little analysis of what might have gone wrong with the contracting process. Rarely do these articles seem to be written from real-world knowledge of what has gone on, but they do get a few things right. Not sure Przybylek was the best person to ask.

Comments: Reminder: comments should be made only on posted posts, not in "suggested topics". I will not publish comments made in "suggested topics".

Anonymous Anonymous said...
The article states: "In January the NNSA and LANS agreed to pay $74 million to settle claims by the New Mexico Environment Department related to the accident."

Wrong! NNSA payed the $74M fine to NMED. LANS didn't pay anything. Raises questions about the article with this glaring error at the beginning.
March 5, 2016 at 7:33 AM
 Delete
Anonymous Anonymous said...
Yeah, LANS did agree that NNSA would pay the fine they were responsible for.
March 5, 2016 at 7:45 AM
 Delete
Anonymous Anonymous said...
NNSA does not print money, so the $74M had to come from taxes that NNSA levied on other programs. Does anyone know (not speculate, but know) whether the tax was levied across all sites (LLNL,Pantex,Y-12,etc), or was it only levied on LANL programs? In other words, whose lunch did LANS eat?

Thursday, March 3, 2016

Did George W. Bush lie about weapons of mass destruction in Iraq ?

Did George W. Bush lie about weapons of mass destruction in Iraq ?

Not looking for controversy here, just some facts from former LLNL/LANL employees. No classified please.

I remember distinctly before the second Iraq invasion that a colleague of mine working in nuclear intelligence commented that the "business" around the precision aluminum tubes was a fraud. He stated that the Labs knew that there was no connection with any past or present isotope separation program in Iraq, and that the accusation on behalf of the Bush administration was a fraud.

Other so called evidence, like the presence of chemicals to make agricultural products, was also "cooked up" to back the claim that Iraq had an active chemical weapons program prior to the invasion.

Investigative reporter details Bechtel's influence


"Bechtel is all but immune to the debilitating effects of government oversight for its flaws and shortcomings due to its long-established and firmly entrenched relationship with government decision-makers at the highest level." Sally Denton

http://m.santafenewmexican.com/pasatiempo/books/readings_signings/investigative-reporter-details-bechtel-s-influence/article_7520013c-32ad-5af8-b836-5ba9c8710b5d.html?mode=jqm

A book about Bechtel

Great book about Bechtel was just released “The Profiteers: Bechtel and the Men Who Built the World”. which you can order from . Kindle or Hard Copy. Very up to date including LLNL and LANL.

Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Lockheed agrees to pay DoJ 5 million fine

Lockheed agrees to pay DoJ 5 million fine...for facility that it hasn't operated for DoE since 1999


This open ended liability years after a M&O has left a location is why no respectable business would consider bidding on a DoE facility.


http://energy.gov/sites/prod/files/2016/03/f30/Lockheed%20Martin%20FCA%20Settlement_29Feb16.pdf

LANL blasted in another IG report

LANL blasted in another IG report

http://energy.gov/ig/downloads/audit-report-doe-oig-16-07

Charlie's wife

Charlie's wife is a nurse in Occupational Medicine. The position was a new position created as part of the hiring of McMillan as Lab Director; it was negotiated with Norm Pattiz and Glen Mara when he had his UCOP VP job. Dr. Scherer raised concerns but they were over ridden by AD Brandt. The rest is history. Unexcused absences, poor performance, and cookie baking in the Occ Med kitchen.

Los Alamos, secret colony, hidden truths

The list of interesting blogs has been updated with the following link to a book by Chuck Montano. A whistle-blower diary!

http/://www.losalamosdiary.com

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