Jun 7, 2009

Shocking News!

---------------------------- Original Message ----------------------------
Subject: Note from ADEPS
From: "Susan Seestrom"
Date: Fri, June 5, 2009 5:53 pm
To: adeps-all@lanl.gov
Cc: "Terry Wallace"
mneu@lanl.gov
arb@lanl.gov
wxg@lanl.gov
--------------------------------------------------------------------------
Colleagues,

Cyber Security

Cyber security continues to be a concern at the Laboratory. There has been a dramatic increase in targeted phone calls (those targeting a specific person). Recently examples are calls claiming to be from local banks, local medical facilities. The caller knows your name and telephone number and solicits personal identifying information. Do not give out your personal information. If you think it could be legitimate, call back to the normal phone number for the organization if it reputes to be one you deal with.

We have also been hit by war dialing - over 40,000 calls this last weekend. Phone calls that solicit PII or other suspicious information should be reported to the SIT (Security Inquiry Team 665-3505) The lab have moved to proactive defense, so let NIE (Network Infrastructure and engineering) Organization (667-6430) know if you have a legitimate requirement to collect information through phone calls.

We continue to see new threats involving email. The Lab received 3.664M emails last month from external resources; NIE stripped 1.728M of these emails because they appear to be SPAM. They also stripped between 100 and 2000 emails a days for virus content in the last month

A new threat: targeted nation-state spearfishing. One example from this week: a collaborative community of researchers (internal + external) with a shared email list was targeted. Someone appearing to be known to the group solicited information from the members of the lists about z number or password. A few people responded. When malicious outsiders have this information it can be used to compromise our network security.

Report emails that solicit information such as Z numbers, passwords, or PII to the SIT. NIE is proactive in shutting down external URLs/IP addresses solicit information: please let them know if you are using these types of services.

Privileged Computer Access for Non-US Citizens

Once again I request your patience in working through the problems posed by the new computer system designed to track, justify and approve computer access for Non-US Citizens. The implementation has been very rough, as I know from the amount of time it has taken me to approve them. I have spent quite a bit of time working with Tom Harper and Nat Farnham in CIO to resolve the numerous problems we have encountered. We received a one time extension to the process. This means that we have until June 12th to either obtain approval for privileged access - or to remove that access.

AS of this morning there were about 130 cases in which the host had not submitted the request for approval thru the PUAR system. Many of these may not really need to be submitted (because that system was mistakenly identified as needing privileged access, for example). My plea is that all hosts/co-hosts of foreign nationals ensure that the data has been entered into the PUIAR system for EACH SYSTEM to which your FN needs privileged access. Your division leaders have the complete data base on what is in this system and they can provide information if you are unsure that state of your requests.

I would also like to remind you all that the laboratory has been negotiating with NNSA at the highest levels to develop an approval process for privileged access on appropriate machines for Foreign Nationals from countries the Department of State has deemed "sensitive" (http://int.lanl.gov/security/isec/fva/countries.shtml). At this time we have not received final approval on this process - Terry Wallace is personally strongly engaged on this and he is optimistic we will have a process, but it is not yet approved. Until such an approval is obtained we have until June 12th to remove PA accounts for foreign nationals on the various machines/clusters that have not been re-approved by this new PUAR process. This will unfortunately require us to begin removing such accounts, including all those for sensitive FNs. We will continue to work toward an approval process for the needed tools for all our workforce to accomplish their work.

I understand this may have very significant impacts to the productivity of many of our foreign national employees and visitors. We must also comply with the policies that NNSA has laid out for us. Be assured we will work tirelessly to find ways to mitigate the impacts of this policy.

Electrical Safety Improvement

Safety incidents continue to be a grave concern of mine; one of our divisions has an incident almost every week and I am concerned that the sheer volume is a warning that a serious incident could happen at any time. Please, please ensure you are trained and authorized to perform work or tasks, and be vigilant and careful when you perform them. In particular - student mentors ensure your students are properly supervised, that they have appropriate training, and they understand what work they are allowed to do. Students - be sure your understand what you have been authorized to do - and if you have ANY questions ask you mentor (and if she/he is not available ask your team leader or group leader).

Right now the Lab is emphasizing electrical safety and we are asking that all of you take some actions to raise your awareness regarding responsibilities, qualification and training, to assure your electrical equipment is safe, and that IWDs adequately reflect potential dangers. This is why:

There have been twelve electrical incidents this FY:

* There have been 6 electrical events in March 2009.
* Two were serious shocks, to programmatic workers.
* Three resulted from work control omissions, using a voltmeter on energized circuits (Mode 2 work) without authorized work control (without a proper IWD)
* Three involved workers not qualified.
* Two involved unlisted, unapproved electrical equipment.
* One involved inferior quality equipment.
* One was a deenergized phone line struck during excavation.
* Two were clearly Human Performance related
* At least one could have resulted in a fatality if luck had not been on our side

Now let me tell you about another incident of concern that occurred just this last. On May 27, 2009, the Science Technology and Operations FOD declared a management concern relative to work management and worker qualification discrepancies identified on a pulsed magnet replacement. On May 21, 2009, the Materials Physics and Applications National High Magnet Field Laboratory (MPA-NHMFL) acting group leader became aware that a NHMFL student had inadvertently removed a cable connected to the cell safety switch while replacing a pulsed magnet in Cell 3 of the NHMFL. The cell safety switch, an engineering control, isolated the magnet from the 1.6 mega joules (MJ) capacitor bank energy source. A NHMFL technical staff member had tasked the student to replace the magnet due to its failure. Preliminary review found the magnet replacement work had not been properly authorized. The review identified the following discrepancies with the pulsed magnet replacement work:

* The MPA-NHMFL student has been in the NHMFL technical program for about two years. He had been assigned a mentor, but due to unusual circumstances, his mentor left and another mentor had not been re-assigned to the student.
* Work requests for students are processed through their supervisor which is usually a mentor. In this case, the student performed the magnet replacement work alone in Cell 3 of the NHMFL. The work request had not been processed through the student's supervisor; therefore, MPA-NHMFL management was unaware of the work until it was reported.
* Integrated Work Document No. NHMFL-35-124-l105-1, "Capacitor Control and Maintenance," defined the hazards and mitigating procedures for performing maintenance, repair or modifications of capacitor bank system. The IWD did not specifically address magnet replacement and the student had not been authorized to perform work under this IWD.
* Any maintenance, repair, or modification to the capacitor bank system must be performed by a qualified electrical work. The student, though extensively trained, was not a qualified electrical worker.

The issues of work authorization and appropriate supervision have the potential to cause problems anywhere in our organization. We are fortunate that the magnet lab center leader was well versed in the hazards of pulsed power, that the issues surrounding this event were appropriately brought to his attention, and that he responded with appropriate urgency. Please think about how you or your colleagues might be placed at risk due to similar causes and take action if you find some.

Gordon Receives NNSA Safety Professional of the Year Award!

We are fortunate to have the best chief electrical safety office in the complex! Lloyd Gordon received the NNSA Safety Professional of the year award for 2008. Gordon displayed outstanding leadership in electrical safety, both at the Laboratory and across the Department of Energy, said Tom D'Agostino, NNSA administrator. He is a primary author of the Electrical Severity Measurement Tool, which is now used across the DOE complex to categorize and report electrical incidents. Gordon also provided leadership and technical guidance to nearly 150 group and division electrical safety officers and developed and delivered training to thousands of Lab workers.

Safe Drinking Water

AD Bob McQuinn presented information on drinking water at our LANL team meeting on May 29. In April, LASO directed that bottled water is an unallowable expense if safe drinking water is available. LANL and LA County both comply with the Safe Drinking Water Act of 1994. In 1993 LANL extensively evaluated drinking water and found trace levels of lead due to soldered joints in some water fountains. All of these have been removed from service. Since the LASO direction, safe drinking water access has been defined as a drinking fountain or kitchen sink. Access to only restroom supply is not considered acceptable. Bottled water can only be supplied if access to safe water is not available, and the FODs will work these issues. The Lab is analyzing water in buildings where there is some suspicion there might be a problem; none have been found. Although the origin of this issue was in the LASO determination on unallowable cost, this is a reasonable decision. for many other reasons. At a time of budget pressure there is no reason to spend money buying water when safe drinking water is available to us. Using the public water supply is more environmentally conscious than buying water and transporting it from other locations.

I wish you an enjoyable weekend and a safe and productive week!

Susan

--

Susan J. Seestrom, Ph.D.
Associate Director for Experimental Physical Sciences
Mail Stop A106
(505) 665-4454 FAX (505) 665-1293

114 comments:

Anonymous said...

Oh my God, oh my God, oh my God!!!

Someone just called me last week on the phone and wanted to get my bank account information.

Sue Seestrom is SOOOO right about all this. They're everywhere! Watching us, waiting to attack!!!

Thank you SOOOO much, Sue. I'll get on the phone first thing Monday morning at work and alert the LANL Security Office about what happened.

Oh my God! They're coming to get us... arrrrggghhhhhh!!!! Thank goodness that LANS is here to help protect us!

Just remember to not drink any of the polluted water at LANL! Oh my God!!!

Anonymous said...

My advice is never, ever work with a student. They aren't valued by LANS and their mentors are convenient scapegoats. Besides, they hurt Mike's goal of staff reduction.

Anonymous said...

Frank why did this get posted? It seems rather routine

Anonymous said...

Reading the letter from Susan Seestrom, one gets the impression that safety really hasn't improved under LANS. It seems like serious electrical accidents and near misses have increased dramatically.

What gives? Why is LANS still receiving their obscene bonus?

Anonymous said...

The recommendation about not working with a student is good advice.

As much as it is a pleasure to work with students, the mentor, team leader, group leader, and division leader are all at risk if the student disobeys a direct order and gets hurt.

Anonymous said...

My curiosity has been triggered. I'd like to hear more about cutting into a de-energized phone line and how that counts as an electrical incident.

I can only surmise that since the cut was accidental and that it involved wire, it must be counted as an electrical incident. Would the same have been true if it were a fiber optic circuit?

I suppose in an NNSA rule book this type of thing is covered, and of course if you try to explain that it was a minor accident you'll have the lab's bonus cut even further.

Anonymous said...

This insistence on rule based behavior seems to be typical of a manufacturing plant that employs mostly low level union workers not a science lab.

Maybe the nation is so secure that we don't need to get projects accomplished.

Anonymous said...

Maybe safety makes a convenient scapegoat when the issue is really competence.

Anonymous said...

The lab needs to have a serious discussion about the roles of safety (and also security) at the lab. The cya attitude present in this memo and its responses is one of the most serious problems that LANL has. My observation is that experimental work has slowed to a snail's pace at LANL. When it takes a year to get a hazard contol plan approved, there is a serious problem. However, I doubt that anyone wants to touch this issue.

Anonymous said...

Seestrom is helping LANS with their most vital PBI for NNSA... achieving a 5% attrition rate for this next year. I think they'll make it with ease based on mind-numbing memos like this one.

Anonymous said...

Sue forgot to mention to wear shoes that GRIP!

Anonymous said...

Memos like this one from an AD help to quickly kill any notion people may have that the future for LANL will turn out OK. You can stay in willful denial for only so long before reality comes crashing through the gates.

Thanks, Sue, for helping to remind us just how screwed up this place has become under LANS management.

Anonymous said...

I don't get these emails, so it's interesting to see how other ADs interact with staff.

"A NHMFL technical staff member had tasked the student to replace the magnet due to its failure. "

It seems to me like this tsm took on the responsibility for the "unmentored" student. This is pretty typical at the lab since the mass exodus has started.

Lastly, I have to say that at least Sue is honest about the water issue. It's also interesting to note that this is a LASO issue, not DOE-wide.

Anonymous said...

Why are only ADEPS employees getting this information?

What about the rest of us?

Anonymous said...

Well, 6/8/09 12:09 PM maybe LASO forgot to bring their water fountains when moving from TA-43. And if they now have to drink tap water, they thought that LANL employees have to do the same, whatever...

Anonymous said...

"Gordon Receives NNSA Safety Professional of the Year Award!"

Another self-promoter. I had a number of his classes. He does know his stuff, but the first hour of class consists of him tell us the students how great he is.

And, when we called him to come out to the lab to address specific issues, he was always "too busy."

Anonymous said...

After reading the email, it is easy to surmise that English comp is not Sue's forte! One would think a person of her caliber could/would write a descent email.

Anonymous said...

Or maybe even a decent one.

Anonymous said...

So, I need an IWD to use a voltmeter?

Anonymous said...

6/8/09 3:43 PM

Why are only ADEPS employees getting this information? What about the rest of us?

Hold your undies 3:43 PM, Neu sent the same EXACT email out to her directorate. I am sure it is a pre-ordained missive. Stay tuned ... or just read the Blog!

Anonymous said...

"After reading the email, it is easy to surmise that English comp is not Sue's forte! One would think a person of her caliber could/would write a descent email."

I do not agree with your opinion here as I think her email does a spectacular job at sending employee moral on a downward spiral.

Unless, of course, you meant decent ;)

Anonymous said...

Yes, 6:28.

And, you will be tested and shown to be unqualified to use one.

The productivity trend at LANL, (if such a term could have ever been applied to LANL) will continue.

Good work, if you can get it!

Anonymous said...

WTF? Does anyone else see the disconnect, which appears in the very same email?

There have been twelve electrical incidents this FY...........(some of them apparently serious.)

YET.......

Gordon Receives NNSA Safety Professional of the Year Award!

We are fortunate to have the best chief electrical safety office in the complex! Lloyd Gordon received the NNSA Safety Professional of the year award for 2008. Gordon displayed outstanding leadership in electrical safety, both at the Laboratory and across the Department of Energy......Gordon also provided leadership and technical guidance to nearly 150 group and division electrical safety officers and developed and delivered training to thousands of Lab workers.

What is going on here? Lots of electrical accidents, and our chief electrical safety guru gets an award? I guess that's the DOE/NNSA/LANS/Bechtel way.......don't hold a manager responsible, give him an award (and probably a bonus on top of it.....)!

Anonymous said...

Duh, 7:32. Clearly those involved in the incidents were sleeping during Gordon's class.

The solution is more training!

Anonymous said...

So, I need an IWD to use a voltmeter?

6/8/09 6:28 PM

Yep, the engineer (a qualified electrical worker) that did that got dismissed from his pulse power job and is being groomed for firing.

Anonymous said...

After reading the email, it is easy to surmise that English comp is not Sue's forte! One would think a person of her caliber could/would write a descent email.

6/8/09 4:34 PM

What makes you think she is high caliber? Did she win a Nobel prize in physics?

Anonymous said...

OK, anyone who actually believe Sue composed the email herself is a bonfide idiot. She has an office staff of 10-20 people. I am sure one of those drones put it together and clearly cut and paste from other material as far as I can tell. Good grief, why would Seestrom be spending time composing an email to the masses when she has better things to do ... like painting her finger nails or picking out her next vacation overseas with her hubbie Chris Morris?

Anonymous said...

Here's the jist of the message, I condensed it down into bite-sized catch phrases. Do you see a pattern? Good grief, what have we become:

"proactive defense"

"I request your patience in working through the problems"

"track, justify and approve computer access"

"implementation has been very rough"

"numerous problems we have encountered"

"obtain approval for privileged access - or to remove that access"

"host had not submitted the request for approval"

"ensure that the data has been entered into the PUIAR system for EACH SYSTEM"

"negotiating with NNSA at the highest levels to develop an approval process"

"optimistic we will have a process, but it is not yet approved"

"remove PA accounts for foreign nationals on the various machines/clusters that have not been re-approved"

"We will continue to work toward an approval process"

"very significant impacts to the productivity"

"We must also comply with the policies"

"we will work tirelessly to find ways to mitigate the impacts of this policy"

"ensure you are trained and authorized"

"be sure you understand what you have been authorized to do"

"take some actions to raise your awareness regarding responsibilities, qualification and training"

"work control omissions"

"authorized work control"

"not qualified"

"unapproved electrical equipment"

"clearly Human Performance related"

"management concern relative to work management and worker qualification"

"work had not been properly authorized"

"work request had not been processed"

"The IWD did not specifically address"

"not been authorized to perform work"

"qualified electrical work"

"issues of work authorization and appropriate supervision"

"categorize and report electrical incidents"

"I wish you an enjoyable weekend and a safe and productive week"

Anonymous said...

Maybe safety makes a convenient scapegoat when the issue is really competence.

6/8/09 10:11 AM

Man, talk about hitting the nail on the head! You are spot-on! Thankyou!

Anonymous said...

Anonymous Anonymous said...

So, I need an IWD to use a voltmeter?

6/8/09 6:28 PM

Yep, the engineer (a qualified electrical worker) that did that got dismissed from his pulse power job and is being groomed for firing.

6/8/09 7:56 PM

You presumably must be qualified and authorized. What was being measured with what measuring instrument under what circumstances? Monitoring a voltage? Performing corrective maintenance? What voltage? What available energy? No IWD? IWD not specific enough? Not general enough?

The answers are important to a lot of people.

Anonymous said...

Hey folks, here's a secret: AD's usually don't write their own memos.

Anonymous said...

"I understand this may have very significant impacts to the productivity of many of our foreign national employees and visitors." (Seestrom)

Yeah, as if LANS executives give a flying f*ck about this lab's dismal productivity and increasingly unsustainable high costs!

Anonymous said...

Anonymous at 6/8/09 7:32 PM does not understand the difference between compliance and performance.

Compliance is about all of us taking our training so that PBIs are met and Mikey et all get their bonuses. SO, compliance is IMPORTANT.

Peformance is about not having accidents. Apparently this is not a PBi so it is NOT IMPORTANT!

Anonymous said...

Lloyd Gordon is the "idea man." If we are still having electrical incidents, it's because he haven't adequately implemented his electrical safety program.

Oh, and his famous "electrical incident severity index" - the tool that's used by the whole complex to determine when an incident has to be reported to DOE - only works *after* someone gets a shock.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous at 6/9/09 7:02 AM said...

"Lloyd Gordon is the "idea man." If we are still having electrical incidents, it's because he haven't adequately implemented his electrical safety program."

Sounds a lot like the French generals in WWI. It wasn't their fault that the Germans were defeating the French. The generals had told the army to fight hard!

Anonymous said...

" Using the public water supply is more environmentally conscious than buying water and transporting it from other locations."

This has had the opposite effect. Now everyone is bringing in lots of these small bottles of water and throwing them out.

I have to see someone drink the public in my building. No one dares.

Anonymous said...

It was ludicrous to include mention of the award in this particular Email about safety issues. It sounds as if Seestrom is addressing children. I unfortunately missed the GRIP thing, anyone willing to fill me in with a one sentence explanation?

On another note, anyone know status of school and lab's inquiries into the propriety of Wolfie and Neu's stuff?

Anonymous said...

"I unfortunately missed the GRIP thing, anyone willing to fill me in with a one sentence explanation?" (8:56 AM)

You obviously don't work at LANL, otherwise you would have seen the huge blue signs all over the place about this highly important "GRIP!" issue.

Anonymous said...

8:56 AM, Last I heard about the schools questioning the Neu-Runde family was back when they lived in the valley and lied about their residency to get the yung-uns into Mountain School. But that was years ago.

Anonymous said...

I've taken HPI training twice and I still have no idea what this is supposed to mean:

"* Two were clearly Human Performance related"

Anonymous said...

6:58 pm: "I've taken HPI training twice and I still have no idea what this is supposed to mean:

"* Two were clearly Human Performance related""

I've never taken that training and I know exactly what it means: "Two idiots did really stupid thinga."

Anonymous said...

It was announced today that Tom Harper, LANL's CIO, will be receiving a top level DOE award for his cyber security efforts at the lab.

It looks like destroying all incoming Emails over the holidays and banning PDF files really paid off for the guy. Can't wait to see his latest idea of what he's calling "glove box computing" take over all of LANL's desktop machines.

Anonymous said...

Can't wait to see his latest idea of what he's calling "glove box computing" take over all of LANL's desktop machines.

Just ask one of the FNs how "great" it is working with the OCE boxes, and having their admin access removed. They really "love" their work-free safety zone. Actually, they leave after their 2 years. And European companies and universities, for example, don't really care if LANL shows on their resume.

Anonymous said...

If I didn't know better, I would think that LANS and NNSA must be working toward the goal of getting the FNs to leave LANL. The new OCE boxes are just one step along the path of this process.

Anonymous said...

12:49 pm: "If I didn't know better, I would think that LANS and NNSA must be working toward the goal of getting the FNs to leave LANL."

What is it that makes you think you "know better"? Of course they want FNs out. A significant portion of NNSA management thinks FNs have no business at a national security laboratory rubbing elbows with people doing classified work. LANS management would love to get out from under that particular liability for security incidents. A minor incident will be seen as a good excuse for doing away with the FV&A program.

Anonymous said...

6/10/09 12:49 PM - managed attrition. For example, more than once I have heard from my former colleagues that they have hired inferior US citizens in favor of better qualified FNs. Because it is an increasing burden to get the FN through the LANL system due to additional requirements, increasing 982 paranoia, cumbersome infrastructure (e.g. OCE boxes), etc.

Anonymous said...

Jim Anderson covered for Neu-Runde when they lied to Mountain School but someone on the school board wants it re-opened now. All it takes is a public information request to see whose Los Alamos' address they used when they lived in the Valley. Maybe the Monitor could do some investigative reporting, lol.

Anonymous said...

You presumably must be qualified and authorized. What was being measured with what measuring instrument under what circumstances? Monitoring a voltage? Performing corrective maintenance? What voltage? What available energy? No IWD? IWD not specific enough? Not general enough?

The answers are important to a lot of people.

6/8/09 9:45 PM

A standard yellow fluke voltmeter applied to a 120vac circuit. Troubleshooting a circuit malfunction. Low energy, typical of a small panelboard. IWD was not clear about stepping outside of the work process to do this step. Management made that determination after the fact.

Anonymous said...

Working at LANL is really starting to suck big time. The policies and bullshit from incompetent management is just utterly amazing. Where in the world are they finding and hiring all these assholes from?

Anonymous said...

About the FN issue. All FN's were not allowed into TA-48 today. PTLA guards at the gates. My boss says he doesn't know why. Anyone know why FN's are being excluded from TA-48 without any reason? Sounds like discrimination.

Anonymous said...

"About the FN issue. All FN's were not allowed into TA-48 today. PTLA guards at the gates. My boss says he doesn't know why. Anyone know why FN's are being excluded from TA-48 without any reason? Sounds like discrimination."

ALL uncleared workers, including US citizens, were excluded from RC-1, due to a classified exercise.
Discrimination? That's just dumb.

Anonymous said...

"Working at LANL is really starting to suck big time." - 9:31 PM

Hooray! Excellent news! I think we've found one of our new attrition candidates! Do you need any help filling out the LANL job exit forms?

MIKEY

Anonymous said...

To 10:33, yeah but what kind of country is this when they go through and disrespect your personal stuff? I am going to tell everyone I know not to come to LANL to do a postdoc and I will do the same at my new job at an Ivy League top ten school.

Anonymous said...

6:41 - you work for a company. The same thing happens in industry, the military and even schools. Get over yourself. You are a baby. Why don't you just leave LANL already if you are sooo miserable. Oh, but then you could not take in the big paychecks for doing nothing. Yep, quite the dilemma.

Anonymous said...

6:41, I can scarcely count all the different ways you need to grow up.

Anonymous said...

what kind of country is this?

Have you been asleep the past 8 years? Privacy is gone, even for the sainted FNs at LANL. If you don't like it, feel free to leave.

Anonymous said...

I am a former limited-term TSM, FN
(red badge), left LANL right after M&O contractor's charge, happy in my new place. LANL (LANS) is just a toxic environment, both for FN and US scientists. There are better places to do science in the world, including US.

Anonymous said...

"...disrespect your personal stuff?" - 6:41 PM

Disrespect? You sound like some stupid punk ass gang member, 6:41 PM. I'm surprised you even made it past the initial job interviews at LANL, hommie.

Oh, wait, I forgot. LANS is only looking for D-level students as new hires. I guess you'll do.

Anonymous said...

Working at LANL is really starting to suck big time. The policies and bullshit from incompetent management is just utterly amazing. Where in the world are they finding and hiring all these assholes from?

6/10/09 9:31 PM

Lawrence Livermore National Security (LLNS) aka Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL).

Anonymous said...

6/11/09 11:58 PM, wrote ..."Oh, wait, I forgot. LANS is only looking for D-level students as new hires. I guess you'll do."

But not if you were a D-level student from TAMU and Frederick Reines Distinguished Postdoctoral Fellow at LANL.

Anonymous said...

KNOCK IT OFF!!! why is it so hard to accept that he will be a prof at a top 20 chem school based on his own merits? plus, why in the hell would he want to work here?!?

seriously, you need to move on because it's getting old.

good luck dude!

signed, fellow aggie.

Anonymous said...

12:24 AM, because Herr Doctor Professor Ivy-League-Top-Ten-or-is-it-Top-Twenty?-Frederick-Reines-Distinguished-Postdoctoral-Fellow-how-do-I-know?-because-he-can't-get-through-a-conversation-without-mentioning-it-three-times practically BEGS to be mocked!

Anonymous said...

12:24 AM ... you are dangling some low-hanging fruit for the grabbing.

Anonymous said...

And I quote ... 6/14/09 12:24 AM ..."seriously, you need to move on because it's getting old."

Now that you mention it, no, not so much!

Anonymous said...

Yes, 12:02 PM, pretty much a stuck-up arrogant little prick who truly has done nothing but lie under oath and somehow managed to keep his position when Jaime Tournear, the better scientist with a better pedigree, lost her job. I truly don't know how that happened, but it did.

Anonymous said...

12:24, since you are an Aggie you'll appreciate this metaphor:

Running magnetism measurements for 20 publications doesn't make you an Al Cotton. It makes you a Carlos Murillo.

Anonymous said...

And 1:41, I think I'll pass. There's too much grabbing of the Reines Fellow's fruit going on already.

Anonymous said...

To answer 6:36 PM: My understanding of the situation is that Schelter was supposed to get fired in 2005, but for some unknown and yet explained reason Doc Aq made a deal with the powers that be to allow Schelter to keep his job. He somehow got both Director's and Reines Fellowships within a very short time-span. This defies explanation and is without precedent (can someone explain?). And now he works for a second-rate scientist, wanna-be-group leader (always acting but can't get the real job). Details please???

Anonymous said...

Running magnetism measurements for 20 publications doesn't make you an Al Cotton. It makes you a Carlos Murillo.

Oh so, I guess that makes him a Doc Aq wanna be? Don't think so. I think Doc Aq is more like Schelter wanna be. Who has the better job now?

Anonymous said...

Oh noooooo! It's the devastating "I know you are, but what am I" rebuttal.

How very Ivy League.

Anonymous said...

Today's PADSTE highlights announced that Christopher Graves (MPA) and Gary Walker (P) one the Experimental PD Publication Prize this year. In fact, Graves has won quite a bit of awards in the past few months. I guess 6/14/09 7:00 PM explains why.

Anonymous said...

I see Schelter "a lot" and he has been talking lots of smack about Doc Aq the last few months, in particular about abusive behavior and retaliation. I am confused. what is the story?

Anonymous said...

"Running magnetism measurements for 20 publications doesn't make you an Al Cotton. It makes you a Carlos Murillo."

Cotton is dead anyway and Murillo moved on to other adventures, most notably not riding on Cotton's coat tails.

I still appreciate your humor.

Anonymous said...

7:33 PM - what humor? Cotton was murdered.

Anonymous said...

Q: What did Eric Schelter say when he met Frederick Reines in heaven?

A: "You must be so excited to finally meet your namesake!"

Anonymous said...

7:03 PM, go back under your rock. No story here, just move along or read the papers or just ask Wallace for the real scoop.

Anonymous said...

Murdered? those were the rumors and rumblings two years ago that his death was "suspicious" but I don't think police found anything during the investigation.

p.s. The humor lies in 7:00 pm's metaphor. Guess you've had to work in the TAMU Chemistry department to appreciate the context.

Bah, nevermind.

Anonymous said...

6:12 AM, he is just a big fat arrogant prick who honestly got lucky. try working with him. many of us have to listen to how brilliant he is every fucking day. consider yourself lucky.

Anonymous said...

10:05 PM wrote ..."Murdered? those were the rumors and rumblings two years ago that his death was "suspicious" but I don't think police found anything during the investigation."

Not true! Kim Dunbar's (former TAMU prof and Schelter's PhD advisor) boyfriend was arrested for attacking Cotton. Dunbar was a favorite of Cotton and then not-so-much by the family post death. Of course Murillo was instrumental in swaying the family against Dunbar but heck. Go figure.

Anonymous said...

Best of Luck to the University of Pennsylvania Department of Chemistry! Rah, rah!

Anonymous said...

Leave Schelter alone! Enough already. He will be trying to start his own research group with his own ideas and needs a fresh start after Doc Aq ruined his career and refused to support him. Please support him and wish him success as it can only help LANL at this point.

Anonymous said...

Wow- you guys really know how to bring out the long knifes. Guess you don't have enough to do....maybe LANS will wake up-not. To bad, though. Get back to science knuckle heads.

Anonymous said...

Sorry to disappoint, 12:23, but science isn't even on the radar here in LANSLand.

PBI's baby! And GRIPPy shoes. That's where it's at.

Anonymous said...

8:36 PM, your statements are so outlandish and so provocative, a multi-part answer may be required. So here's part one:

The claim that Jackie Kiplinger "ruined [Eric Schelter's] career" is logically incoherent. The man is running around crowing about his starting his "top 10 Ivy League" position this fall. He landed this job less than a year after he repudiated Kiplinger as his postdoctoral mentor.

His career has patently not been ruined by anyone, least of all by Kiplinger.

Anonymous said...

Hey 8:36, you forgot to add that Doc Aq has been retaliating against Schelter - poor guy, he only magically got the trifecta of PD fellowships at LANL. Someone had to nominate him for these - they don't just magically come down from the sky because someone thinks they are brilliant. Yeah, Doc Aq really has it in for this guy. Grow up PD2.

Anonymous said...

Thank you, 6:12 PM. That was going to be my next point.

That Reines Fellowship that Eric Schelter likes to brag about? The one he mentions twice in his cover letters and three times in his CV (yes, he's THAT arrogant). The one that's mentioned on his new UPenn website, and in their "Welcome to the Chemistry Department" news item? (And by the way, Penn Chemistry, he isn't "the" Reines Fellow, he's "a" Reines Fellow. And I might add the others are quite decent human beings). Yeah. Jackie Kiplinger nominated him for that fellowship. She put the package together, she wrote the glowing letter of recommendation and made the phone calls to ensure the other references said all the right things to the committee. Jackie did that. Not Eric, that little shit. And that was AFTER he pulled his little boneheaded stunt in 402. (More on that later).

AND she put him up for the Seaborg, and the Director's Fellowship.

AND she put his name on something like 17 papers.

AND she fought for him to have a fourth year of his postdoc, and then a fifth. Nobody gets five years, but Jackie made the case that Eric deserved the chance to make up for all of the events that had interfered with his research progress. (Even though some were of his own making!)

AND she sent to him Gordo's, and to the MRS meeting, and to ACS meetings.

She even defended his honor publicly on this blog, and that was after he repudiated her mentorship.

The only thing I can see that Jackie DIDN'T do for Eric's sorry ass was that she drew the line at indulging the lazy, arrogant, self-absorbed attitude that he adopted once he'd received his Reines Fellowship and started "finding himself."

I guess he figured there was no more blood to squeeze from the turnip at that point, so it was time to betray Jackie and start spreading shitty tales like the one that's published above.

Anonymous said...

Now part three.

If Jackie wanted to destroy Eric Schelter's career, all she'd have to do is make public the information he revealed to Lab Legal about his participation in the events in 402 on that fateful day. But despite all the times her reputation has been dragged through the mud on this blog, she has revealed the details - the details Eric himself confessed - to only a small cadre of individuals.

Come to think of it, maybe that's why Eric was so afraid to use her as a reference in his job search. Maybe that's why he's made up all the tall tales about how cruelly he's been treated.

Hey, Eric, if it was so awful to work for Jackie, why did you stay with her for FOUR YEARS?

Anonymous said...

6:12, talk about biting the hand that feeds you. Another gift of a human being brought to you by LANS!

Anonymous said...

Please leave Eric Schelter alone! He doesn't deserve this after all he has been through. The Aqua Regia TSM is hated by even her most celebrated postdoc Graves - he wants nothing to do with her anymore either. The best thing LANL can do is NEVER allow this wench to have another postdoc!!

Anonymous said...

6/17/09 5:57 PM wrote ..."His career has patently not been ruined by anyone, least of all by Kiplinger."

That is not what Felicia Taw, the new C-IIAC deputy group leader and former Kiplinger PD says ... you might want to get your facts straight.

Anonymous said...

wow, looks like we come full circle to Susan's title for this thread ... shocking news! Doc Aq is an evil bitch and her postdocs just suffer so much. we have been hearing this for a couple of years now. seriously, why is this stupid woman still here at LANL? seriously, can she not get a job elsewhere? others leave and sue. maybe she deserves what she gets because she keeps taking it. someone please explain this to me ...

Anonymous said...

This stuff is just out there. Can you guys keep this behind closed doors. It is sort of
like watching a couple scream obscenities at each other in a public place.

Anonymous said...

Frank, can you please consider removing all of the comments about this reines fellow? a postdoc does not deserve to have his name dragged through the mud on this website, especially when starting a new career away from this place. if nothing else, can you at least remove his name from the posts?

it's sad, it's sick, it's lanl. THIS is why no postdoc in their right mind would stay to work in this environment - any success is minimized by these jealous jackasses.

Anonymous said...

10:13 PM Anonymous said...
wow, looks like we come full circle to Susan's title for this thread ... shocking news! Doc Aq is an evil bitch and her postdocs just suffer so much. we have been hearing this for a couple of years now. seriously, why is this stupid woman still here at LANL? seriously, can she not get a job elsewhere? others leave and sue. maybe she deserves what she gets because she keeps taking it. someone please explain this to me ...

Wow, indeed Eric Schelter. Sounds just like what you were saying today. Enjoy Pennsylvania, you have done more than enough for the reputation of LANL. As a former manager of yours (please do try to figure our who), I have truly no idea why Doc Aq ever stood up for your sorry ass.

Anonymous said...

"{Not true! Kim Dunbar's (former TAMU prof and Schelter's PhD advisor) boyfriend was arrested for attacking Cotton."


Dunbar is still at TAMU.

Anonymous said...

Yes, but she is desperately trying to get out of that shit-hole. They have treated her something awful thanks to Carlos Murillo (you know, Cotton's bitch and Schelter's role model) and his gang of thugs with no spines.

Anonymous said...

Wow, another great relationship brought to you by LANL. So sad how it has evolved and how Schelter hates Kiplinger. How did this happen? Who allowed this to transpire?

Anonymous said...

"Yes, but she is desperately trying to get out of that shit-hole. They have treated her something awful thanks to Carlos Murillo (you know, Cotton's bitch and Schelter's role model) and his gang of thugs with no spines."

excuse me but WHAT IN THE HELL ARE YOU TALKING ABOUT!!! gang of thugs? please...from the costa rican jungle i presume. by the way, "mini me" is not respected at a&m by any of the faculty and they were more than happy to unload him at nsf.

Anonymous said...

Yes, 4:51, LANL was too and folks who were willing were under orders to write some kick ass letters and now Penn has to deal with their choice. Good night, and good luck!

Anonymous said...

"shocking news! Doc Aq is an evil bitch and her postdocs just suffer so much."

Ah yes, another Kiplinger PD has just won the LANL postdoctoral publication prize. Another PD who's career has been destroyed at the hands of the evil advisor.

Anonymous said...

under orders from who? not jackie.

Anonymous said...

12:08 PM, you sound so angry. why the negativity towards Doc Aq? it perplexes me when i read this wench is "so bad" then I hear that her postdocs win awards and get jobs. how is this ruining careers, engaging in retaliation, and just being an evil advisor? don't get me wrong, Schelter was in my group at one time and I was glad to see the little f*ck and Doc Aq leave, but I know she fought to keep Schelter from getting fired and saved his career by nominating him for fellowships that he did not deserve. So what gives? I would really like to know, not because I care about either one of these folks, but the data doesn't add up.

Anonymous said...

you have me wrong 7:35 pm. i'm not angry at jackie or anyone else. i agree with you that jackie, unlike many tsms, fights for her pds and tries to further their career in any way that she can. i just want to know who was "under orders" to write a good letter...i don't think anyone was forced to say something just to help him land a job.

Anonymous said...

LANS is corporate now and all letters have to be positive and cannot tell the truth especially if the institution wants to see a problem move away. This happens all the time. The orders probably came from Schelter's management.

Anonymous said...

1:45, you can be sure of that. For data, Kevin John his was so afraid of a lawsuit that he let Schelter call his 2nd and 3rd and then house-hunting trips to univerisities as work. As a taz-payer I am appauled. As a LANL employee I recognize that some people and groups are more equal than others....George Orwell...

Anonymous said...

No 6:33. You are only partially correct. Kevin John was the only staff member to accept Schelter after he decided Kiplinger was no longer worthy of having him. Several prominent folks were asked if they would let the Reines Fellow work in their labs and all said no based on his arrogance and lies during the aqua regia investigation. They did however agree to write letters as part of the agreement. Figure out the rest and fill in the blanks from the other earlier queries ..

Anonymous said...

To 6:33, from Kevin himself regarding Schelter on Facebook ...

Kevin D. John at 2:17pm June 27
Miss you guys already!

Please tell me there is nothing personal there....

Anonymous said...

JESUS! you people need to get a life. now you're stalking him over facebook?!?

Anonymous said...

Didn't know Jesus had a Facebook page. Cool.

Anonymous said...

Give it up! He has a job that for some reason you want and instead of working hard to achieve success, you decide it would be easiest to smear his name on the lanl blog. Perhaps you should just STFU and GBTW and then you'll see the offers pouring in. You're not in grad school anymore...grow up!

Anonymous said...

Well, maybe if Eric Schelter were not wasting the government's dime and not working and trying to use up every second on vacation or house-hunting or stealing supplies from the Lab or using Lab resources to work on his UPenn teaching materials and bragging about how smart he is and how stupid his two former female bosses are and how LANL is going to pay for all the bad in his life then maybe people would STFU.

Anonymous said...

You can report waste fraud and abuse by anonymous letter to the DOE IG in Albuquerque, you know. Aside from badmouthing his former advisors, everything you've mentioned at 8:56 PM can be investigated, perhaps even after he leaves the Lab.

Anonymous said...

Indeed. I know of a couple of former postdocs that had to pay back the lab for waste, fraud, and abuse. I think it would make for a great story.

I can see the headlines now ..."Former Los ALamos National Laboratory Frederick Reines Distinguished Postdoctoral Fellow and LANL Aqua Regia Scandal Participant, University of Pennsylvania Assistant Prof. Eric Schelter Guilty of Waste, Fraud and Abuse."

The tax-payers will NOT be amused, nor will the tenure committee.

Anonymous said...

This week Eric Schelter (The LANL Frederick Reines Distinguished Postdoctoral Fellow) packed up and stole thousands of dollars of books and supplies purchased on the Lab's dime. He is taking these items to help kick-start his career as an Assistant Professor at the University of Pennsylvania. It has been reported to our AD (shocker, Neu) and nothing was done about the reports. Guess the IG will be doing some searching in Eric Schelter's home, office, labs in Philly. Enjoy boys!!