Jun 14, 2007

Off we go into the wild blue yonder


Bill Mullins of the Air Force will be visiting LANL on Thursday June 14. He is scheduled to give an all hands meeting in the NSSB auditorium from 1 to 2 pm. Dr. Mullins serves roughly the same role in the Air Force as Barry Hannah does in the Navy. For historical reasons, valid though not discussable on the blog, LANL does not have a very good reputation with the Air Force.

There are some who wish to portray the LANL scientific staff as uninterested in the national defense mission. As most have noticed, LANL is not in good graces in Washington DC at the current time.

Dr. Mullins served on the RRW1 POG, where his actions exhibited technical competence, honor, and discretion. He was not involved in the political games. He is the customer for RRW2, we have an outstanding proposal, but there is justifiable doubt that LANL is serious about the Air Force customer.

In my opinion, a large attendance at this meeting is in the best interests of the Los Alamos National Laboratory and its staff. The Navy is the among the strongest supporters of LANL in Washington DC and another customer of that caliber could be quite beneficial in the political arena.

It is not clear why LANS has not publicized this meeting with greater advance notice. I acquired a copy of the announcement only after COB today.

This meeting will be SRD sigmas 1-10 due to the nature of the topic. My apologies in advance to those customers of the blog unable to attend due to these restrictions.

Please publicize this meeting. If you wish you can use this email with my name attached.


John M. Pedicini

ADC reviewed as unclassified

[View Bill Mullins' bio here.]


Anonymous said...

"It is not clear why LANS has not publicized this meeting with greater advance notice. I acquired a copy of the announcement only after COB today.

Sad that Pedicini has to resort to using the blog to publicize this meeting because LANS dropped the ball or doesn't seem to care. All to typcial. But, hey, LANS may want to drop RRW2 into the lap of LLNL, right?

FlyingDog said...

Is there even going to be any RRW (1 or even 2 or more)? See the current budget discussions for more on that.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the news John. There are some discreet, 8x11 posters in the hallways for this talk. I guess they didn't want to upstage Mikey.

Anonymous said...

john pedincini = arrogant ass

Anonymous said...

8:24 - Thank you for your constructive constribution, crystal clear arguments and unrefutable conclusion.

Dr. Strangelove said...

8:24 -

Not to mention excellent display of spelling and proofreading skills!

Bloggers, ya gotta love em (us!) don't you?

- Doc

P.S. Thanks for getting the word out John...

Anonymous said...

Bring your kids, grandkids, mistresses if you have any and, of course your spouses (current and former). We need bodies, dead or alive, doesn't matter just so long as we fill the auditorium to standing room only. Please!

Anonymous said...

Why don't you folks just leave John alone? At least he has the balls to sign his name and stand up for what he believes. If you want to bash someone, how about the ADs, PADs, and well, Mike who didn't even sound excited about all the great things LANL accomplished over the past year. Rah, rah, team ... and NOBODY asked a single hard question.

Anonymous said...

Yes. Today's All-Hands meeting with Mike was pathetic. The auditorium also looked very bare. Sign of the times. No one even cares any longer.

Anonymous said...

> No one even cares any longer.

Not even about Lab subsidized free child care?

Anonymous said...

Heck, the lab couldn't even keep the live video stream working for Mike's talk today. Just another sign that the place is beginning to fall apart. While it was up and running, the RealPlayer video quality was very poor and the audio had a loud buzz to it. After about half and hour, the audio was completely lost and never came back on. Didn't matter though, because a quick check around the offices in my area showed that no one was bothering to watch it. Even the rooms with CATV links weren't being used by anyone to watch Mike's talk. Truly, no one seems to care about Mike and his All-Hands talks any longer. Perhaps when he gives the "RIFs are Coming" talk people will start to tune in again?

Anonymous said...

"Starting" to fall apart? How about HAS fallen apart?

Eric said...

"Not with a bang, but a whimper" T.S. Eliot, "The Hollow Men"
"Til human voices wake us and we drown" T.S. Eliot, "The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock

I would like some history and some thoughts.

By my calculation, LANL will be short about $900,000,000 in funding this year or the next.
$200,000,000 in new taxes etc.
$200,000,000 in funds controlled by people who have left.
$500,000,000 in cuts from Congress.

Why doesn't the community get to together to protect itself.
Why aren't there lots of organizing meetings to stop these cuts?
Why is the best effort of many either to be silent, to do nothing, or to make ad hominem attacks.

John is trying to raise some money. Why is it useful to attack him?

Was it always this way here?

Anonymous said...

How can people get excited about a UC hack from Livermore taking over the reigns at Los Alamos? If change was in the cards for us the Lockheed team would have signaled real change, not just the illusion of change. But the DOE clique at the Lab prevailed, and UC got what it wanted in the process. And so what we have now is a repackaged version of same ol same ol. This is why Mickey and friends are so hard to swallow by so many. We, those of us who have been living the reality of what's being seeing the gradual decline occurring at the Lab for well over a decade now, can readily see that nothing really has changed except the name of the parent organization and a few new players from the military-industrial complex now sitting in the executive wing. But essentially it's still the same old mindset with the same managers playing the same old game of bait, switch and denial. This song and dance may have worked for over 60 years, but now its an old decaying cold war routine everyone is just plain sick and tired of, including the U.S. Congress. That's why no one give a damn anymore.

Eric said...


I understand the sentiment very well.

But, once the funds dry up, for you as a person and for your colleagues, then what?

What is your (and each reader's) personal plan that will get them beyond the downsizing?

Most of the plans that I have seen have consisted of "Close your eyes, do nothing, and hope."

If I was trying to devise a plan that most favored NNSA and least favored the residents of this county, the above plan is it.

Eric said...


The number of jobs that I know about looking for talented job seekers with skills of lab folk has now risen to 800.

Anonymous said...

Care to post some links to some of those jobs?

Eric said...

I will think about it but, at the moment, no.

I have these lists because the people sending the openings to me know me and trust me.

I can't afford to have people behave towards the hiring personnel the way that they behave towards each other on this blog.

My reputation with the hiring personnel would disappear in a heart beat if people did not behave professionally.

So, my immediate thoughts are:

If you are not willing to contact me directly as a first step, I am unwilling to pass you on to the hiring personnel.

Does this make sense to you?

Anonymous said...

Enough of you, Eric. BE GONE!

Anonymous said...

Eric has been flamed pretty good on this blog. I can't say I blame him for not providing information to those that flamed him for free.

I do wish he would hock his wares somewhere else, but I can't say that I blame him for not posting whatever information he believes he has here either.

Anonymous said...

Oh yes...Eric the Great has so much gifted insight to share but we, the less informed, don't show him enough respect and appreciation. Thus he denies us our pleas for aid and guidance. Oh wowas me, my poor wretched soul suffers so!

Anonymous said...

Nothing in it for Eric if he gives it away. Oh, and he has his reputation to consider! Noticed how many posts he's conatributed since the security issue came to light? Does the vision of an ambulance chaser come to anyone? And we are sooooo rude in flaming his blatant attempts . . .

Anonymous said...

The Bill Mullins talk was a treat today, and to think I'd have missed it if not for this blog! It never was advertised on the lab homepage. Sad.

Anonymous said...

Of course it wasn't advertised on the LANL home page. Mike and company have plans to direct any work resulting from RRW2 to his buddies out at Livermore.

Honestly, I don't understand why Pedicini and most of the other senior weapon designers don't just decide to up and leave LANL and take jobs out at LLNL. That's where the future design work, if any, will probably be done from now on. It's part of the "integration" plan that LANS management is so proud of.

Anonymous said...

Because LLNL does not want or need LANL's designers. Pedicini has threatened to go there many times in the past. The plain truth is that LLNL does not want any of our designers.

Anonymous said...

10:02 PM - out of curiosity (and maybe naivety), is there an unclassified summary of Bill Mullins talk available?

Anonymous said...

Thought I could copy this interesting posting and keep pasting it until someone responds:

I've got an idea! Why doesn't the lab try to compete for funding outside the DOE? We've been reading of brilliant LANL ideas for years like the Plasma enabled gasoline engine, beams in space, R&D 100 awards and laser-driven fusion power.
If all these "breakthroughs" were just public relations fakery, the time has come to tell the truth before LANL asks for more funding. Has the public been fed 50 years of lies? Where's the beef?

Anonymous said...

Eric @ 4:09, 12:36 here. I understand your hesitancy.

I have no interest in flaming potential employers. I'm just trying to line up some back up plans in case of RIFs.

Starting to hear about my TSM coworkers looking around as well. Interesting thing is they have no particular ill feelings toward LANL. They are operating under the assumption that what they do will be getting cut back at some point and realize they are not irreplaceable.

Eric said...

I would be happy to help, a little or a lot, whatever is needed.

I just need a private and confidential sense that the person is real and that I am not risking my reputation by helping.

Posting confidential job listings on this blog does not seem like a good plan.

A simple, short phone call or email (follow my blogger information to get these things)would resolve all the potential issues.

For lots and lots of reasons, I do not want TSMs to end up caught in the growing mess.

Anonymous said...

Eric - thank you for your continued selfless humanitarian interest in our poor plight. How would we ever survive without you, at least as long as it doesn't affect your reputation. (sarcasm might be intentional)

Anonymous said...

"LANL does not have a very good reputation with the Air Force."


Air Force General John Jumper does not have a very good reputation with me.