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. Opinions not conforming to BLOG rules are deleted. Blog author serves as a moderator. For new topics or suggestions, email jlscoob5@gmail.com

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Let the Debate begin.

Anonymously contributed:

Let the Debate begin.

From the New York Times Editorials, 10/30/11...

"...In his push to win votes for the New Start treaty, Mr. Obama gave away far too much to balking Republican senators. He promised to invest an extra $85 billion over 10 years for the nuclear labs to maintain and modernize the arsenal, including overhauling thousands of older bombs that should be retired. He proposed spending $125 billion over the next decade for a new fleet of nuclear-armed submarines, 100 new bombers, a new land-based intercontinental ballistic missile and two other missiles.

Senior military officials acknowledge that hard decisions must be made — including possibly eliminating one leg of the nuclear triad. In July, Gen. James Cartwright, then vice chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, called for a reassessment of where nuclear weapons fit in today’s world.

All Americans need to be part of that discussion, as does the Congressional “supercommittee,” charged with coming up with a plan to reduce the deficit by $1.5 trillion over 10 years. Here are sound cuts for the nuclear budget:

*Senator Tom Coburn, one of the few Republicans to support nuclear reductions, has called for cutting the number of deployed strategic warheads to 1,220, the ballistic missile submarine fleet to 11 from 14, and intercontinental ballistic missiles to 300 from 500. He also favors delaying the purchase of new bombers until the mid 2020s. Total savings, according to Mr. Coburn, would be at least $79 billion over the next decade. It is a smart beginning.

*Don’t modernize the B61 tactical nuclear bombs in Europe. No one can imagine that the United States would ever use a nuclear weapon on a European battlefield, and Washington is in discussions with NATO to bring them home to be dismantled. If the Europeans want to keep them for political reasons, let them pick up the tab. Savings: $1.6 billion.

*Halt construction of the new plutonium storage facility at Los Alamos National Laboratory. Costs have increased tenfold, and there are serious safety questions about the location — along a fault line and near an active volcano. Savings: $2.9 billion.

*Halt construction of the Energy Department’s Savannah River facility that is supposed to recycle plutonium from dismantled weapons into mox, a fuel for nuclear power plants. The sole customer for the fuel dropped the contract. Savings: $4 billion.

*Cancel the uranium processing facility in Oak Ridge, Tenn. The nonpartisan Project on Government Oversight says that with $100 million in upgrades, another facility there can do the work. Savings: $6 billion.

*Down-blend more of the 400 metric tons of highly enriched uranium in United States weapons stocks for sale to nuclear power plants. The administration has neglected this, while investing in programs that increase the life of nuclear warheads. Revenue: $23 billion.

The country will need some number of nuclear weapons for the foreseeable future. And it must ensure that they are safe and reliable. But spending on the arsenal must be rational and consistent with national security goals — not driven by inertia or politics."

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Penrose "Parney" C. Albright named LLNL director

FROM PAO:

Penrose "Parney" C. Albright has been named the director of Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory. Norman J. Pattiz, chairman of Lawrence Livermore National Security, LLC (LLNS), which manages the lab for the U.S. Department of Energy, made the announcement today (Oct. 27).

The appointment takes effect Dec. 1. Albright also will serve as president of LLNS.

Appointed with the concurrence of DOE, Albright is the 11th director of the Lab since it was established in 1952. He replaces George Miller, who is stepping down after six years as director and a 40-year career of service to the nation and the Laboratory.

"We have selected a leader who brings a fundamental understanding of the importance of science and technology to national and global security," Pattiz said. "In selecting a leader for Livermore Laboratory, we have found someone who has credibility in the national security arena and a history of addressing a broad range of complex technical issues for the nation's senior leaders.

"Parney understands how the fundamental and applied science, engineering and computational capabilities of the Lab can contribute to advances in new energy technologies, scientific discoveries and global security," Pattiz added. "He has a strong commitment to, and understanding of, the critical role Livermore Laboratory plays in the weapons complex and to the stockpile stewardship program, along with the National Ignition Facility and National Ignition Campaign. His skills and experience will lead the Laboratory into a new era of scientific and technological excellence in service to our nation."

"Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory is an integral component of our nation's national security enterprise and one of the Department of Energy's most vital and distinguished laboratories," said Energy Secretary Steven Chu. "As we work to accomplish the Department's unique national security missions and make the critical investments required for the future of American innovation, I know we have an outstanding partner in Dr. Albright."

Albright was selected after a nationwide search that began in June. Albright joined the Lab in 2009 as the principal associate director of Global Security, the Lab's program for applying science and technology to the nation's effort in counterterrorism, nonproliferation, defense, intelligence and energy needs.

"It is my honor to lead this Laboratory," Albright said. "Livermore Laboratory has a long and rich history of service to the nation. As director, I will work diligently with the help and counsel of the entire Livermore team to ensure this Laboratory remains a pre-eminent center of excellence in stockpile stewardship, high energy density physics, high performance computing and simulation, and other pillars of world class science, technology and engineering - all applied in the nation's interests."

Albright has more than 20 years of experience in the federal government and the private sector. Prior to joining the Laboratory he worked with Civitas Group, a homeland security consultant in Washington, D.C. He has served as assistant secretary in the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), assistant director in the Office of Science and Technology Policy and, concurrently, senior director in the Office of Homeland Security in the White House; and program manager with the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency. He served for more than 15 years on the staff of the Institute for Defense Analyses, a Department of Defense Federally Funded Research and Development Center (FFRDC), performing high quality and high impact studies and analyses for the most senior officials within the Office of the Secretary of Defense on a wide variety of complex systems and issues at the intersection between technology and policy.

He has extensive experience with interagency and congressional interactions, and was a spokesperson for both the White House and DHS to the press and to the broad national research and development enterprise on issues associated with science, technology, and weapons of mass destruction.

Albright holds a bachelor's degree in physics and applied mathematics from The George Washington University, and a master's and Ph.D. in physics from the University of Maryland.

"Having known and worked with Dr. Albright, I look forward to a strong and rewarding partnership," said Thomas P. D'Agostino, administrator of the National Nuclear Security Administration. "As NNSA continues to implement President Obama's nuclear security agenda and make critical investments in the future of our Nuclear Security Enterprise, I know that Livermore will continue to play an important role in the safety and security of the American people."

In announcing Albright's appointment Pattiz also thanked Miller for his extensive service.

"George Miller has given 40 years of his life in service to this nation," Pattiz said. "Building on its incredible history as a premier research and development facility, Miller successfully guided Livermore Laboratory into a new era of science and operations. Our thanks to George for his tremendous commitment; the Laboratory and LLNS will miss his exceptional leadership."

Monday, October 24, 2011

How about an "occupy the Labs" movement?

Anonymously contributed:


How about we start an occupy Livermore movement? There is one at Los Almaos now and more people will be joining. You do not have to be on the left or the right you just have to feel that something is deeply wrong in Washington and the United States. The labs have been turned over to private hands and what has been the result other than a few people getting rich and the ability to our mission eroded. What did the American taxpayer gain? Nothing.

Now imagine what happened at the labs but much worse for the rest of the people. The military people cannot get proper equipment to protect themselves yet private contractors get billions with no value added to our military. You are forced to put your money in dodgy stock plans since the interest rates are kept near zero. Businesses and labs lose money and lay off people yet managers are paid way more than they ever had, is this the free market, is this the capitalists way, hell no? We are becoming a nation of pirates and criminals. I know that most of us are better way better off than many others protesting but we should not use this as an excuse to do nothing but rather as a duty. "To whomever much is given, of him will much be required; and to whom much was entrusted, of him more will be asked." Luke 12:48

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Age and pay discrimination at LLNS

Anonymously contributed:

Age and pay discrimination are alive and well @ LLNL-LLNS. The good old boys & girls continue. Due to the secrecy of wages/salaries at LLNS I had no gauges as to where I stood w/ my peers. I just recently found out where I stand and I am very disappointed and offended. I am a 60+ year young, 20+ career employee and have an Engineering degree. No I do not want to retire, I like my job but I want to be treated fairly. I began in the Plant Engineering Crafts Shops and moved into the coordination field. I have had a great deal of training and performed many, many types of work from grunt to medium level management tasks and activities. I am only a 5XX after 20+ years. I have been held back from advancement (5XX > 3XX Series) and been given negligible pay raises compared to my peers while performing the same work tasks. In other words, in my humble opinion, I have the same Skills, Knowledge & Abilities (SKAs) or more w/o the benefit of moderate advancement or equal pay increases as my peers and co-workers. I know the same old worn out complaints. Could someone advise of a good attorney?

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

DOE busted!


http://www.nationalreview.com/corner/280715/busted-doe-altered-solyndra-related-documents-andrew-stiles

DOE red-handed

Unverified news:

Poster reveal your source, Scooby

News broke today that the DOE has been caught red-handed in the act of re-wording previous press releases issued back in April about the corrupt Solyndra-gate affair.

Shades of Orwell's 1984!

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Deputy Lab Director Ike Richardson Leaves LANS

In Bechtel's Deputy Lab Director "rotation scheme" at LANS/LLNS, Ike Richardson is being transferred from one salt mine at Los Alamos to another mine in Australia. Does anyone know exactly what Ike accomplished during his short stay at LANL?

Monday, October 10, 2011

Welcome back Scooby!

Welcome back Scooby! Keep in mind your providing an important National service. We missed you and appreciate your time and effort....

Sunday, October 9, 2011

DOE NREL in Colorado announced RIF

DOE's NREL energy lab in Colorado just announced it is implementing a 10% RIF.

The cause for the RIF? Congressional gridlock hurting their expected funding. We'll likely see something similar to this at the NNSA labs.


** ‘Green jobs’ farm in Colorado sheds jobs after receiving $200M in stimulus funds **

10/4/2011

President Barack Obama’s “green jobs” initiatives suffered another major blow late Monday, as the nonprofit National Renewable Energy Lab in Golden, Colorado, announced a plan to lay off roughly 10 percent of its staff through a voluntary buy-out plan.

According to the Denver Post, the lab plans to eliminate between 100 and 150 of its 1,350 jobs. The Obama administration supported the NREL in 2009 with roughly $200 million in stimulus grants. Energy Secretary Stephen Chu visited Golden in May 2009 to promote the NREL as a beneficiary of those funds.

...The lab’s mission is to handle U.S. Department of Energy research and development programs.

NREL spokesman Bob Noun blames Congress for the organization’s failures. The Denver Post reports that he believes the gridlocked U.S. Congress forced the NREL to find $8 million in new budgetary savings.

“We don’t see any budget scenario where the lab doesn’t face budget cuts,” Noun said. “We just want to be proactive in managing the budget so we continue our core mission.”

Read more:
dailycaller.com/2011/10/04/
green-jobs-farm-in-colorado-sheds-jobs-
after-receiving-200m-in-stimulus-funds/

New investments

Can someone explain in simple English what is actually happening to the 401(K) plan? Looks to me like we lose, again. It's hard to tell if we have the option to keep our funds with Fidelity-there is some verbage about "if you do not want your existing balances and future contributions to transfer to the similar investment options... contact Fidelity Investments before 4:00 pm..."

This BLOG=crap?

Well, the entire blog is "crap" just to be clear. However, the obvious absence of the blog owner for so many days (weeks) indicates a lack of attention and commitment on his part. I for one would be happy if the blog went away, but to the extent it pretends to provide a venue for "current" LLNL issues, it is failing badly with no explanation. Can anyone explain why a blog owner cannot connect briefly in order to at least post a note as to why he is not able to attend his blog?? At least with the old LANL blog, when Frank was found dead in a hotel room, Doug was able to explain what was going on, and Doug was probably the worst blog owner in history.

Chill out!

Folks, take a chill pill. Or launch the blog of your choice. Clearly the moderator is out of the loop right now. Maybe they are enjoying a nice cruise. A bit of spam here is hardly a crisis and probably no more crap than some of the 'normal' commentary.

Unattended, neglected BLOG

Interesting how this blog can go so long unattended. No offense, Scooby, but could you clean up your act once in a while? Not all your corespondents are complying with the rules for posting. And you aren't complying with your own rules. This blog now seems like a sad, unattended vacation house with mouldy shutters and rotted wood, with 2 foot high weeds at the front door. Pretty sad. Say, any chance you'll be giving it up for good? Nah, too much to hope for.

Fatality at LANL

Fatality at LANL

One Dead in Pajarito Road Rollover Crash
By Carol A. Clark
Saturday, September 17, 2011 at 11:04 am (Updated: September 18, 2:47 pm)
A person was killed Saturday morning in a rollover crash on Pajarito Road, which is restricted and on Los Alamos National Laboratory property.

In typical "no information LANS policy", nothing been conveyed to LANL employees on this incident.

Solyndra and Dr Chu

I wonder what part Dr. Chu had in the sleazy Solyndra deal that has recently been uncovered?


March 20, 2009 – Solyndra, Inc. announced today that it is the first company to receive an offer for a U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) loan guarantee under Title XVII of the Energy Policy Act of 2005. Solyndra, a Fremont, California-based manufacturer of innovative cylindrical photovoltaic systems, will use the proceeds of a $535 million loan from the U.S. Treasury’s Federal Financing Bank to expand its solar panel manufacturing capacity in California.

“The leadership and actions of President Barack Obama, Energy Secretary Steven Chu and the U.S. Congress were instrumental in concluding this offer for a loan guarantee,” said Solyndra CEO and founder, Dr. Chris Gronet.

knolls Lab benefits slashed!

Saw this on another topic- would like to have a topic on the formation of a technical staff union at Knolls Atomic Power Laboratory, which is an NNSA lab that does work for the Navy Nuclear Propulsion Program. The KAPL staff had recent benefits slashed under new management. How bad do things have to get at the weapons physics labs before this option is on the table? or will we just keep taking it form LLNS/LANS/NNSA in stride?

Who is the LLNS next president really?

Any word or serious rumor on the next LLNL Director. Isn't George Miller due to retire at the end of this month?

Do you know anything about Frank Russo?

There is a writer doing a story on Hanford for Seattle Weekly and he is wondering if someone might be willing to talk a bit about Frank Russo's history at LLNL?
Let me know and I will put you in touch with him.

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