Jul 3, 2007

Changes at the labs are an injustice

Contra Costa Times
Article Launched: 07/02/2007 03:01:16 AM PDT


As a 31-year engineer at the Lawrence Livermore Laboratory speaking on my own behalf, I seek support to rectify the insult given after years of sacrifice, success and dedication.

The National Nuclear Security Administration has mandated that Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory employees receive poorer benefits as we transition to the fledgling startup after 55 years under University of California leadership.

UC wisely provided attractive lifetime benefits during those 55 years to focus attention of the country's top scientists on deterrence and solving important national problems without time spent worrying about family security.

Good planning kept the cost minimal. That successful paradigm is discarded as the NNSA continues the adventure in organizational redesign.

Will the new brain trust that will certify the stockpile in 2030 be the same kind of credible and experienced cadre that heretofore dedicated their lives to solve national problems?

New candidates will be offered uncompetitive benefits. With retention incentives eliminated, few with talent are likely to remain years and decades to become effective.

For those now employed, the NNSA plan bypasses the congressional requirement that the current and new plan be equal by dishonestly ignoring significant differences in the comparison.

The assertion that these benefits are comparable is false. Nine significant benefits are taken away and nothing new is offered.

This deception punishes innocent Californians for the repeated shortcomings of others elsewhere, while at LLNL we willingly complied and served.

Native sons and daughters, speak out against this injustice.

Buzz Pedrotti
Discovery Bay

23 comments:

Eric said...

My version of this is not

"Speak out"

which often accomplishes little;

but

"Figure out how to do effective action. Then do it."

which accomplishes more.

Anonymous said...

Look at what politicians have become - nothing more than street smart CRIMINALS

Anonymous said...

"Substantially equivalent in the aggregate" was the phrase used when DOE's silver-tongued lawyer was talking to LANL personnel before the catastrophic change at Los Alamos. As you point out, proposed benefits are in no way equivalent. The UC retirement problem is bigger than the DOE labs associated with UC, however. See, for example:

http://www.eastbayexpress.com/2007-05-09/news/parsky-s-party/

Also, Google up Berkeley Professor Emeritus Charlie Schwartz, who has provided considerable information on substantial problems with how UCRP money has been handled. All UC pension plan beneficiaries, not just lab employees, have been screwed by Regents' pension plan management decisions.

Anonymous said...

For those of you not yet aware, Eric doesn't even work at LANL. He's been making a pretty pathetic attempt to sell placement services to unhappy LANL staff for a couple of years now.

I personally find his smarmy, self-ingratiating comments here to be quite offensive, and would like to request that the moderators ban any further posts from Eric.

GussieFinkNottle said...

Pinky and I sympathize, 8:46 AM.

I personally find Eric to be a major irritant. Pinky, on the other hand, just sees him as a sad little person. If enough people request it, we can certainly ban him from this blog. Until then, however, he will be allowed to continue to try to shill his "placement services".

--Gussie

Anonymous said...

Buzz, kind of limiting yourself in CA by requesting only the native sons and daughters "...speak out against this injustice.", no?

Anonymous said...

The link posted at 8:44 for UCRP funding managegement problems doesn't work. Try this:

http://www.eastbayexpress.com/2007-05-09/news/parsky-s-party/

If that doesn't work, have Google look for: Schwartz, Parsky.

Anonymous said...

"This deception punishes innocent Californians for the repeated shortcomings of others elsewhere, while at LLNL we willingly complied and served." (Buzz)

Oh, cut the BS, Buzz. Looks like you'll now get the chance to "willingly comply and serve" towards your new LLC. Enjoy it!

GussieFinkNottle said...

Unkind and unnecessary Asshole.

Oh, wait! That's me, not Buzz.

Sorry, please forget I even mentioned it, Buzz.

--Gussie

Anonymous said...

Buzz Pedrotti States "This deception punishes innocent Californians for the repeated shortcomings of others elsewhere, while at LLNL we willingly complied and served." Give me a break. Where were all these LLNL comrades when we were going through the same shit? They must have been in a state of denial or perhaps delusional in thinking that they were somehow going to be treated better than LANL. Wake up.

Anonymous said...

"Also, Google up Berkeley Professor Emeritus Charlie Schwartz, who has provided considerable information on substantial problems with how UCRP money has been handled. All UC pension plan beneficiaries, not just lab employees, have been screwed by Regents' pension plan management decisions."

Yes, this was because of Parsky (see Parsky's Party). He pretty much screwed up the UC retirement fund and now he is on the Board of Governors for LLNS! Time to get the heck out of Dodge, I say ...

Anonymous said...

Welcome to the Real World,,,no one owes you anything.....be happy with what youv'e got, because thats all there is for you....This is the "Real World" and yes it's going to be tough, macho word and harsh talk just don't cut it anymore...they can and will, screw you, like youv'e never been screwed before, or evere again...SO just remember B.O.A.K.Y.A.G...yes you know: Bend over and kiss your sweet ass goodby.....

Anonymous said...

You have my vote to ban Eric. (Not censorship - just eliminating commercials!) From the number of other posts on various subjects that we have seen being irritated by Eric, we should be able to generate enough interest in doing so.

Any other takers?

Anonymous said...

http://
www.eastbayexpress.com/2007-05-09/
news/parsky-s-party/

This is what 8:44 and 10:28 were trying to show for not only Buzz and LLNL but all UC employees affected by the lousy UCRP investment performance that has occurred since the investment function was outsourced, courtesy the Regents, and Parsky, in particular.

Anonymous said...

Regarding censorship, both in moderating the posts, and censoring Eric:

If the comments that Gussie posted are representative of some of the flames that the blog receives, the moderation of comments (especially flames) sounds like a good idea

But as far as censoring one particular person goes, I personally feel that one generally loses the moral high ground if one censors views they don't like (and I don't consider flaming a 'view'; it is a different sort of thing altogether).

(Having said that, I too wish that Eric would stop pushing his wares on the blog. He seems to have dialed back on the frequency of it....)

But his post at the top of this page is reasonable. He has a good point in that post.

If the blog starts censoring personnel whose views differ from the views of the people that run the blog, how is the blog different (in a moral/ethical sense) from LANS's own internal propaganda pieces?

I suggest their is no difference.

Our dear Pete Nanos would go non-linear at the slightest hint of disagreement (and I witnessed this in several meetings). So do many bloggers (remember how people used to respond to Gary's posts on the original blog? I dimly recall talk of censoring him, too).

Seems to me that if we as an online community (of sorts) fancy that we have some sort of moral high ground on LANS (or UC, or Nanos, etc), the we should not stoop to their level.

Potrzebie

Pinky and The Brain said...

Potrzebie,
As far as I know almost nothing has been censored yet. The moderation was perhaps overdue but in my view mostly preemptive.

A few comments have been removed at the request of the person left the comment, and a few very long comments pasted from Google searches about Eric were removed. If anyone is really interested I can forward copies of them by email.

Banning Eric (or anyone else) just isn't on my radar screen. I allow his comments for the same reason I allow his critics to comment. The blog is a forum about all things Los Alamos with most of the content coming from readers. If I wasn't interested in providing such a forum then comments would be turned off completely.

If anyone's comment/contribution doesn't appear on the blog I encourage them to email me for an explanation. Blogger.com isn't perfect. Sometimes comments appear twice and its likely that some comments are lost. I have no way to know a comment was lost unless somebody informs me. If your comment doesn't appear on the blog, please don't assume you've been censored until you've checked with me.

Anonymous said...

The point has been made that no other posters use this blog for personal commercial benefit. Having read Eric's posts throughout the blog, he has contributed little to the discussion here, has been downright weird at times, and self-serving at best. I could even interpret the post at the top of this thread as consistent with his theme of "leave the lab and let me help you find the perfect job." The vision of vulture is just too real.

If he had anything really beneficial and/or stimulating to contribute, he may not be met with such animosity.

Pinky and The Brain said...

Eric's comments seem to generate the most controversy. He's also contributed posts that I thought were helpful. See this one and this one.

Anonymous said...

Pinky and B: I don’t think anyone would argue that his comments don’t generate the most controversy. Many, however, don't appear to agree that the controversy is on point. Another interpretation of the two posts that you offer in his defense might be that of his many posts, few have real merit.

However, thank you for offering and defending everyone's ability to post. (Sincerity intended)

Pinky and The Brain said...

I was making a distinction between posts (top level) and comments (on posts).

Thanks for the compliment too. Those will never be censored!

Anonymous said...

Where were all these LLNL comrades when we were going through the same shit?

Two answers. One, watching and learning.
Two, dealing with all the mandates and busy work crap that NNSA kept sending our way thanks to problems elsewhere.

All of which is water under the bridge at this point. We're joined at the hip whether we like it or not. It's past time to stop pointing fingers at each other at this point.

Dr. Strangelove said...

Pinky & the Brain -

We applaud your preferences *against* censorship.

Yes, Eric is very tedious sometimes but the only thing I see supporting comment moderation is when vandals and spammers deeply disrupt the flow the rest of the folks are trying to create.

We have a few of what Darko has called "hecklers" who seem to be trying (only) to disrupt, but for the most part they can be ignored (or laughed off the blog).

We give Eric a lot of credit for NOT responding to all of the criticism he gets here.. he stays on-point (his point) quite well...

'nuff said, carry on!

- Doc

PS. Sorry we missed you Tuesday!

Anonymous said...

Let's not fight amongst ourselves... Honestly, DOE needs to pay a reasonable pension to all its workers.

I fully support the LLNL postion that it should receive the same retirement benefit as LANL did. (plus they have tons of voting Representatives). When the LANL BenVal rebasing happens, maybe next year, we can use the same argument, and so on. Perhaps, if the two labs stick together we can stop this slow erosion.