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Thursday, June 28, 2012

Future cuts to nuclear weapons budget?

Anonymously contributed: Future cuts to nuclear weapons budget? Chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee, Carl Levin, told an audience at the National Press Club this week that any deal to stave off sequestration should include at least $100 billion in new Pentagon savings over ten years. “When you look at plans to avoid sequestration, $100 billion over 10 years is a number I look at, because I think defense has got to contribute,” Levin told the gathering. Levin also suggested that additional savings could be drawn from funding for military family housing needs in South Korea as well as from the nuclear weapons budget. June 28, 2012 11:26 AM


Anonymous said...

Well duhh.

Anonymous said...

The House cut the NNSA budget this year and it is looking like the Senate leadership is preparing to cut it more next year. Will be interesting to watch how Parney works through this.

Anonymous said...

Who needs nuclear weapons? America has no enemies, right?

Let's continue to chip away at our decrepit fifty year old nuclear weapons infrastructure while our "friends" continue to modernize and innovate their nuclear weapons complex.

It would also be advisable to have the liberal politicians like Carl Levin and their allies in the main stream media do some additional demonizing of the weapons complex to help push our filthy, decaying US nuclear weapons complex right "over the (fiscal) cliff".

Why not have Congress just go ahead and make the final Rocky Flats "push" to complete the closure of the complex? They done such a fabulous job over the last decade with their lambasting, neglect and budgetary destruction. Might as well finish the job!

Anonymous said...

July 1, 2012 -

Iran: There will be War - And We'll Win

By Reza Kahlili

Just days after the breakdown of talks with the West over Iran’s nuclear program, the deputy chief commander of the Revolutionary Guards announced that there soon will be war – and that Allah will ensure his forces are victorious.

The last round of talks between Iran and the P5+1 (the United States, Britain, France, China, Russia and Germany) ended in Moscow last week without any agreement on Iran’s illicit nuclear program.

Gen. Hossein Salami, in a televised interview, boasted that, “Iran has complete control of all the enemy’s interests around the world and is on a path to reach equivalency with world powers.” The commander emphasized that Iran’s nuclear program is irreversible, the Islamic Republic News Agency reported.

Salami said war is inevitable, and the Iranian forces are ready.

Meanwhile, back at the old, de-moralized, decrepit, down-trodden, risk adverse, micro-managed, CYA, de-activated, Sig Hecker labeled "scientific prisons" know as NNSA 'weapon labs' run by the for-profit Bechtel Corporation for NNSA.....

Hmmm, I wonder if Iranian, Russian, Chinese and North Korean nuclear weapon scientist are all required to wear those "shoes that GRIP!"?

Anonymous said...

Nuclear weapon scientist at the modern research labs of Iran, North Korea, Pakistan, India, Russia and China don't have to worry about wearing "shoes that GRIP!" and other insane CYA policies.

They spend their time designing weapons and being well supported by their respective governments. Only in America have we decided to let our nuclear weapons infrastructure rot away!

Anonymous said...

Charlie McMillan had LANS sneak in some new policies changes late Friday afternoon. Some of these changes had previously been announced to staff while others had not been publicly discuseed.

The next round of layoffs at LANL will happen very rapidly. Only 30 days notice will now be required! The old policy of 60 days before the layoffs could begin has been removed.

You'll no longer be allowed to devote work time looking for another position if you are placed on the RIF "at risk" list. Also LANS will offer you no help in looking for another job (i.e., resume writing assistance, etc).

And in case you haven't yet figured it out, you'll be required to sign a legal statement (under duress, of course) promising to never sue LANS if you want your greatly reduced severance package after being kicked out the front doors of Los Alamos National Lab.

Heckavajob, Charlie!


Procedure P713-1 Reduction in Force - Revised

Section 2.2: Corrected applicability to include employees with regular appointments and to exclude key personnel as defined in the Prime Contract.

Section 3.2: Changed notification from 60 to 30 days advance written notice. The 30 days may be paid in lieu of notice.

Section 3.3: Deleted language that permitted Reduction in Force (RIF) candidates to devote work time to seeking other employment, and deleted the provision of administrative assistance in preparing résumés and employment applications. Added that the Laboratory, at its discretion, may provide assistance to RIF candidates in efforts to find other Laboratory positions, if available.  
Allows employees identified for RIF to be considered internal candidates during the 30-day notice period.

Section 3.4: Clarified that severance is not given to RIF candidates who refuse to transfer to a Laboratory position that does not include a reduction to current salary or relocation.

Section 3.4.1: All employees on one severance schedule with a maximum of 26 weeks of pay.

Section 3.4.2: New section defining when and how severance pay is paid.

Section 3.4.3: New section requiring that individuals sign a waiver and release of claims provided by Los Alamos National Security, Limited Liability Company (LANS, LLC) to receive severance pay.


Anonymous said...

Doubtful that staff in a future RIF will be 'kicked out the front door'. More like they will be 'escorted out under armed guard'.

Anonymous said...

Interesting article below about a new LANL recruit. Fresh off the farm and utterly clueless, jus' how LANS loves 'em. It gives you some idea of how Los Alamos is seen by people outside of New Mexico.

* Michigan Tech alum headed to Los Alamos *

June 28, 2012
Midland Daily News

A recent graduate of Michigan Technological University is headed to a very interesting first job out of college: a research position at the Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) in New Mexico.

David Warner of Dimondale is starting his new assignment at the birthplace of the nuclear weapon. Today, Los Alamos is a leader in humanity-based research and development.

Pam Warner, David’s mother, is happy to see her son get an assignment at LANL.

“This is such a great opportunity for a young man, and we are all very proud of him,” she said.

His father, Charles Warner, a retired chemistry and physics teacher, credits much of David’s success to hard work and his choice of college.

“David got a great education at Tech,” Warner said, “and his hard work really paid off.”

...Created in 1943 by J. Robert Oppenheimer, the staff at LANL was charged with creating a weapon system powerful enough to bring a quick close to the war that had raged on for five years. After much development under a shroud of secrecy, the “Little Boy” and the “Fat Man” bombs were created and used against Japan.

However, the LANL of today seems to share little with the fledgling enterprise that gave birth to the nuclear weapons used in Hiroshima and Nagasaki in 1945. Although the laboratory still does some work in the field of nuclear weapons, the main mission of the laboratory is on things like AIDS research, developing new breast cancer testing methods, and studies into bio fuels, to name just a few.

David could find himself working on any number of projects like these when he receives his assignment.

“It is exciting to think about what I will be asked to do,” he said, laughing, “but I am still a bit nervous.”

His path to the LANL started while studying at Michigan Tech, where he worked on various projects in his pursuit of a computer networking and systems administration degree. Last year, he participated in an internship program at LANL that involved working with a team of other students in studying the effects firewall software had on a number of different computers. David and his team used a large number of small computers linked together to create a super computer, and tested various firewall programs to see how fast the computers would run using the software.

...A long-time Midland resident and a former Dow Corning and Dow Chemical employee, Shirley knew her grandson’s hard work would pay off for him.

“David always had good grades, all the way through high school and while he was at Tech,” she said.

Warner said while Los Alamos has a negative connotation for some people, she assures those around her that the current scope of the laboratory is to benefit people through research.

“I have been reading about Los Alamos and I have educated a lot of my friends about what they do out there now,” she said.

David starts his new assignment on July 2. In the few days before he finds out what he will be doing at Los Alamos, David will be setting up his apartment and stocking the shelves and refrigerator with supplies.

“Los Alamos is still very isolated,” he said. “They have a grocery store similar to say, Kroger, but there are not really any other places to buy things,” he said.

One of the reasons for the remoteness of the site is the secret nature of some of the research done at the laboratory. “The security there is incredible,” David said.

The program David will be working in will begin with a one-year assignment. If things work out for him, he could be offered an extension or other employment opportunities at LANL. Regardless of what happens, he knows he will be busy in New Mexico.

“I’ll have plenty of stuff to do,” he said.

Anonymous said...

That is a funny story.
No wonder the sad situation on the Hill, where the main mission of the lab is AIDS and breast cancer testing research. Bet that is news to the researchers at NIH and NCI.
But it does explain why DoD is cutting back more on funding for the labs. Guess next time someone needs an annual certification letter signed they can go to MD Anderson.

Anonymous said...

Maybe when Charlie was bragging about his 'sets of relationships' that made him Director he was referring to NIH. Based on how it has gone recently with DoD, there does not appear to be any benefit that has made its way to LANL.

Anonymous said...

That spunky kid with an degree in IT from Michigan Technological University sounds like he has better credentials than Brett Knapp! He probably has a better attitude, too.

I say we make him LANL's next Principal Associate Director (PAD) of nuclear weapons and give ol' Knapp the boot.

We could even throw in free airline tickets back home to Michigan every weekend and an expensive Porsche Cayenne sports car to help clinch the deal.

Anonymous said...

That spunky kid with an degree in IT from Michigan Technological University sounds like he has better credentials than Brett Knapp! He probably has a better attitude, too.

I say we make him LANL's next Principal Associate Director (PAD) of nuclear weapons and give ol' Knapp the boot.

We could even throw in free airline tickets back home to Michigan every weekend and an expensive Porsche Cayenne sports car to help clinch the deal.

July 8, 2012 10:10 PM

The kid from Michigan Tech certainly has all the credentials to become Knapp's replacement. No experience with a B.S. degree from an 4th rate Junior college. Is this a sign of the caliber of students the Labs are hiring now? The students from Cal Tech, MIT, and Stanford are aware of the decline and loss of prestige of the so called "Big Three", SNL, LANL, and LLNL.

Anonymous said...

The students from MIT/Caltech/Stanford all go to Wall Street now anyway, so that's the labs real competition--not some university lab that offers $30k perpetual postdoc positions without hope of career advancement. All of science was long ago insourced to Iranian, Indian and Chinese foreign nations who figure a life long postdoc for $30k beats starving to death back home anyday of the week.

Anonymous said...

Leave the poor kid alone. He has a new opportunity he's excited about, and for good reason. He, like all his peers, is assuredly not looking for a 30+ -year career at LANL. He will quickly discover what the true environment and mission at LANL is when he gets here, Then he will choose to stay or not. All you sourpusses who think your gravy train has been unfairly taken away should just shut up and let the new generation do its thing. LANL will survive, but not because of you whiners.


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