Nov 17, 2009

Coverups Are Bad, Transparency is Good


I've been pretty busy in my LAL (Life After LANL), and wasn't going to do any posts this week, but a comment on the Lab executive team starts Employee Survey results rollout post made me change my mind.

Here's the comment, posted at 5:22pm today:

11/17/09 2:54 PM wrote ..."5 month staged rollout my ass. LANS is going to bury the survey results."

Bingo.


Someone needs to spill the results to the real blog (this one) that actually shares information instead of hiding it.

I tend to agree with our COW contributor: attempting to bury the survey results is lame, and I suspect you all know my orientation regarding lame management decisions.

That's right: override them.

So, I second 5:22's request -- if someone has access to the actual, non-LANS-doctored employee survey results, please send them to either Frank or me. We won't wait 5 months before doing a rollout.

Frank: pinkyandthebrain.acmelabs@gmail.com
Me: lanlblog@parrot-farm.net

99 comments:

Anonymous said...

Some remarks:

1. The eternal recurrence of US nuclear weapons. (Nukes 24/7/365, and first priority for LANS.)

2. There was no rational for this survey by LANS.

3. The LANS survey was irrational.

4. There is no cover-up by LANS.

5. There is bad judgment by LANS that forces the implementation of this unnecessary survey.

Anonymous said...

I believe I speak for everybody who will read your comment, 7:39:

Huh?

Anonymous said...

Now can someone tell me why it takes 5 months to process this information? You know the originals could be destroyed and new ones could be created within a 5 month period...I'm not saying anyone would do this....I'm just saying....

Anonymous said...

They are hoping in 5 months you will forget about it.

Anonymous said...

Where did the 5 months concept come from?

Anonymous said...

Ooh, Sarah Palin...

Anonymous said...

Where did the 5 months concept come from?

11/17/09 8:49 PM

The little panicked peabrains of LANS upper management, where else?

Anonymous said...

I find myself agreeing with the COW post. The only logical reason for LANS to delay giving these results to the employees for 5 months is so they can slowly bury them.

This is becoming a pathetic and very sad place in which to work. LANS upper management has hit a new low. I'm sure it won't be the last one.

Anonymous said...

As I've said before, these upward appraisals do absolutely no good. All managers consider themselves great leaders of men and simply can't face up to the fact they may be held in contempt by their underlings. Thus, all manner of appraisal data manipulation must be done to soothe their egos. In this case, five months of screwing the pooch is required.

Anonymous said...

Could someone explain why LANL management is sooo interested in their own upward appraisal since everyone knows they wouldn’t do anything about them anyway.
We have REAL Safety and Security issues that need to be addressed. I am offended that LANL management waists time when they should be concerned about the CRAZY and DERANGED people in the parking lot at S-Site. What about OUR safety since WE don’t work in a glass palace. What happened to an employee’s RIGHT to safety when your attacker waits for you in the parking lot who in management is first to take action. OBIVIOUSLY NOT SECURITY!!!

Anonymous said...

Saw this post below in yesterday's lab bulletin about new stimulus funding and couldn't help but have a laugh.

Does LANS have any idea how expensive TSMs costs are at this lab? The lab article mentions stimulus funding that totals only $1.2 M for 4 separate geothermal projects and the funding is also to be shared outside of LANL and dispensed over a 3 year period.

That's a drop in the bucket when TSM costs for scientists at LANL are running close to $500K per year and rising!


~~~~
Tuesday, November 17, 2009

New funding stimulates alternative energy research via four geothermal projects

The Lab has received American Reinvestment and Recovery Act funding—known colloquially as stimulus funding—to participate in four geothermal projects with the Pueblo of Jemez, New Mexico Tech, and the University of Utah. The money will enable researchers to provide expertise and technological tools to the partnering entities. The stimulus awards total about $1.2 million to be applied over the next three years.

Anonymous said...

"Spin" takes awhile to produce. The survey lends itself to manipulation by the "Spin" doctors from corporate.

Anonymous said...

ARRA money to participate in four geothermal projects: "The stimulus awards total about $1.2 million to be applied over the next three years."

WOW! One FTE per year for three years! You can sure tell that they are serious about these projects!

Anonymous said...

the boobs are fake.

Anonymous said...

3:42 PM, so is LANS management. Perfect.

Anonymous said...

WOW! One FTE per year for three years! You can sure tell that they are serious about these projects!

I think the *first* round of stimulus funding did NOT permit the national labs to be lead proposers. (At least not the NNSA labs.) So there were only going to be little awards like this. There is a follow-on round where the labs can lead and presumably go after larger grants.

Anonymous said...

"Could someone explain why LANL management is sooo interested in their own upward appraisal"

For the same reason the Lab does so many things it really has no interest in doing...it's either a DOE performance requirement or simply a way to cover the Lab's behind legally. Take for example Director Ewok forcing everyone to take a sexual harassment course and keeping a guy like Marquez at his side the whole time. It's like saying you don't condone animal curelty and your stable of fighting pit bulls are just for entertainment purposes. We all know it's a farce, so what else is new? Think it's time for another round of Congressional Hearings?

PS Another word for farce is "Congressional Hearing."

Anonymous said...

A friend and I have been having this argument for a while. Both he and I agree that LANS is doing a horrible job managing the lab. He, however, argues they "actually mean well", just are totally incompetent, while I've been asserting they know exactly what they are doing.

Sounds like with this "5-month staged rollout" I've just won the argument. This can't be attributed to simple incompetence.

Anonymous said...

Hubba, hubba! That "transparency chick" sure looks hot. In fact, I think I'm going to use her photo for my PC's desktop image.

- Rich ("The King") Marquez

Anonymous said...

Looks like the JASON has a concern regarding "degradation of the work environment."

"We conclude this section with a concern. All options for extending the life of the nuclear
weapons stockpile rely on the continuing maintenance and renewal of expertise and
capabilities in science, technology, engineering, and production unique to the nuclear
weapons program. This will be the case regardless of whether future LEPs utilize
refurbishment, reuse or replacement. The study team is concerned that this expertise is
threatened by lack of program stability, perceived lack of mission importance, and
degradation of the work environment.

JASON report on Lifetime Extension Program (LEP) September 9, 2009

Anonymous said...

"Hubba, hubba! That "transparency chick" sure looks hot. In fact, I think I'm going to use her photo for my PC's desktop image."

It's Heidi Klum. I didn't think her boobs were so big!

Anonymous said...

A friend and I have been having this argument for a while. Both he and I agree that LANS is doing a horrible job managing the lab. He, however, argues they "actually mean well", just are totally incompetent, while I've been asserting they know exactly what they are doing.

Tell your friend to introduce himself to Brett Knapp (God Almighty for all Nuclear Weapons). It shouldn't take him long to change his mind after Knapp forces him out of his job. Take my word for it, these guys hardly "actually mean well". Not only are these guys incompetent but they are SOBs.

Anonymous said...

Tell your friend to introduce himself to Brett Knapp (God Almighty for all Nuclear Weapons). It shouldn't take him long to change his mind after Knapp forces him out of his job. Take my word for it, these guys hardly "actually mean well". Not only are these guys incompetent but they are SOBs.

11/19/09 6:13 PM

I remember when Knapp was brought in. The thought was that despite his rep, Mara and McMillan would keep him in line. Now nobody's minding the store, and Knapp has made himself God. A vindictive, spiteful, sacrifice-loving God. And NNSA is looking the other way, along with the NM congressional delegation. If anyone decent is still around when Knapp gets his comeuppance, it will be sweet to watch.

Anonymous said...

6:13 is exactly correct.

Anonymous said...

For those of you who are so naiive to beleive that LANS intends well, let me educate you. During the past week and into early next week (just before Thanksgiving) Senior Management is currently ranking everyone in a process being designated "1 to N". The purpose of this ranking is not to reward those who get a good ranking but to decide who will make the grade, that is, who will be "retained" and who will be "terminated". It's not question of if, but when, and very clean and surgical. The last time we ranked LANL employees was for the sole purpose of removing people. Good luck everyone, up to and including "N".

Anonymous said...

This ranking is only happening in Charlie's PAD, not the entire laboratory.

Anonymous said...

NNSA wants a 5% attrition rate at LANL for this year and even more reductions in future years. If people don't leave, then LANS will simply find "cause" to fire them. Being near the "N" slot in this rating scheme will be the main justification for "cause". As the first crew is let go, yet another group of employees will find they are nearing the dreaded "N" point, and so it goes...

A RIF would be too expensive due to severance costs and LANS has made it very clear that they don't intend to pay out severance again after the huge costs associated with the SSP voluntary reduction program.

From what I can gather, LANS is particularly keen on reducing the number of scientists who are employed at LANL. Scientists are seen as being too expensive and, with their funding sources now in doubt, they are viewed by LANS as a "problem" when it comes to balancing the bloated LANL budget. Reducing the scientist head count also fits in well with NNSA's future plans for LANL. NNSA wants cheap, compliant workers and not much else.

Good luck surviving the cluster-fuck from NNSA and your LANS executive team. I'm sure Mikey and his top team of managers will see to it that they're all rated with big, fat "1's". And always remember... "PBIs, Baby"! Your continued employment at LANL will soon be directly dependent on it.

Anonymous said...

This ranking is only happening in Charlie's PAD, not the entire laboratory.

11/20/09 11:59 AM


Yes, that's typical of how these new programs are rolled out. You can fully expect it to expand to all the other PADs after it has been taken for a test run.

Anonymous said...

This just in from NNSA's Twitter site -- we're #2. Yeah!!!!....


"NNSA Supercomputers Continue To Lead Globally" (Nuclear Street, Oct 19)

Three of top 10 systems on prestigious list housed at NNSA national laboratories

..“The work done on these complex machines enables us to maintain the safety, security and effectiveness of our nuclear stockpile without nuclear testing,” said NNSA Administrator Thomas D’Agostino. “The supercomputing systems are a critical example of our investment in nuclear security making contributions to broader science and discovery. I am very pleased to see our laboratories and highly skilled personnel recognized for their groundbreaking contributions to the advancement of our national security programs and the field of supercomputing.”

Anonymous said...

I guess this Work Free Safety Zone (WFSZ) tidbit below can be filed under "you don't need no stink'in computer usage, dipshits!".

Expect further reductions in your ability to compute if you work at LANL...


www.infosecurity-us.com/
view/5325/los-alamos-fails
-to-toe-information-security-line-again/

-----
..Additionally, the National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA's) recommendation that employees be given least-privilege access has not been followed, the report said.

"LANL provided users with more access than needed to perform their duties and configure classified systems with more capabilities and services than required"

-----

Anonymous said...

Maybe the LANS Engagement Survey results are dreadful, but LANS has been going around crowing about another poll they recently had done -- community perceptions about LANL:


"Lab gains in community perceptions -
Results of leaders survey released"

By Roger Snodgrass, LA Monitor

Los Alamos National Laboratory has made significant improvements in the all important “favorable impression” category of an annual opinion survey.

The tracking study by Albuquerque-based Research & Polling, Inc. continues an annual program measuring the laboratory’s perceived performance and relationships with the communities of Northern New Mexico.

The sample is based on interviews conducted from Aug. 24 to Sept. 22 with 224 community leaders from a list of 302 names provided by the laboratory.

LANL Director Michael Anastasio let the cat out of the bag a couple of weeks ago, when he told community leaders at a meeting in Ohkay-Wingeh that the latest study had shown improvement.

“I hope that’s a sign that all the good things we’ve been doing are paying off,” he said.

-
www.lcni5.com/
cgi-bin/c2.cgi?
075+article+News+
20091119164618075075004

Anonymous said...

Bait & switch? Word out of HR is that medical rates are going to jump in the middle of the year next year. I guess whatever you sign up for now they can just change rates later? Anyone know if that's even legal?

Anonymous said...

"During the past week and into early next week (just before Thanksgiving) Senior Management is currently ranking everyone in a process being designated "1 to N"."

if there's any truth to this, i feel for the recently converted pds. no matter what your senior colleagues tell you, you will be the first ones thrown under the bus. hopefully most of them have the gen y mentality.

Anonymous said...

Knapp has made more enemies in Los Alamos county than any manager since Admiral Butthead. In time, he'll get his due.

Anonymous said...

Three New Top Posts:

1. "Advisory Panel Says Warhead Life-Extension Could Suffice for Decades," Friday, Nov. 20, 2009, at http://www.globalsecuritynewswire.org/gsn/nw_20091120_7482.php.

2. "NNSA Thanks JASONs for Technical Review of LEP Programs," November 19, 2009, at http://nnsa.energy.gov/news/2721.htm.

3. "Global Warming Hoax Breaks Wide Open as Hackers Target East Anglia Climate Research Unit!", Friday, November 20, 2009, at http://americanpowerblog.blogspot.com/2009/11/global-warming-hoax-breaks-wide-open-as.html, with numerous important links that further kills the AGW theory. The AGW theory is like a fish on land. (Global Warming is Global Governance. (Say no to both.))

Anonymous said...

Refresh my memory please: What's the source of the "NNSA wants 5% attrition" figure?

Anonymous said...

you are no better than the LANL blog since you refuese to post all submissions. think about it.

Anonymous said...

LANL is moving forward to a bright future and LANS is helping to light the way. Lots of exciting new things have been happening at the lab including the start-up of an official LANL blog!

NNSA/LASO's Roger Synder was kind enough to share with lab employees his views about the all important Performance-Based Incentives (PBIs) on the official LANL blog. Here is just some of what he had to say:

"Now with FY 2009 behind, we look back at a year of operational improvements, key to mission capability and performance confidence. These improvements were a significant area of focus in the PBIs. Excellent progress was made. Employees should be proud."

Employee comments to Synder's post indicate that the employees are eagerly chipping in and helping with this important PBI effort and joining in with the LANS team. Here are a few choice employee comments to Synder's LASO PBI post:

*****
N.D. says -- "It is refreshing to read about and learn more about the direction the Lab is taking, both for last year and for next year. Thanks for putting this blog up!"

J.J. says -- "Since LANS is a for-profit LLC, it makes sense to incentivize the output through PBIs."

M.R. says -- "I’d like to thank Roger Snyder for sharing his views on PBIs. I do believe PBIs have real value at an institutional level. In the simplest terms, performance is being rewarding with money. I think this works.
*****


Another post on the official LANL blog involves training issues. Susan Sisk and David Swingle, CAO specialists, have developed a fantastic on-line course with process owner Mick Brown. This course is one of the “How-to” course series for conducting Management Observations.

*****
I.F. says -- "This is a fantastic resource, and it only takes 15 minutes to complete the training! If you need to participate in an MOV, this is the way to do it. Highly recommended. Unfortunately, I have not been able to figure out how to give this a rating of five stars."
*****


Let's not forget the all-important issue of cyber-security at LANL. Our new Chief Information Security Officer, Jamil Farshchi, wrote a wonderful piece seeking customer input (that's you, people!). Jamil is very customer focused and said the following in his official blog post:

"The central tenet of the 'new' cyber security program at LANL is a focus on YOU, the customer. Our goal is to better understand you, your requirements, your challenges, and how security impacts your work at the lab."

*****
J.H. says -- "Jamil, it’s nice to be asked for an opinion; all too often a new rule comes down from “on high” and we’re not given any justification beyond 'security'... Thanks for your time!"

T.H. says -- "Jamil, the cyber improvements are good for everyone. I understand the value of continually being on top to protect us from the bad things that can happen."
*****


Yes, indeed, LANL is doing better than ever under the careful hands of NNSA and LANS. The comments on the offical LANL blog show that most employees clearly see the improvements being brought by our new management team.

While this non-official blog serves as a way for a few unhappy lab employees to vent their frustrations, I would strongly suggest that they join the LANS team along with the majority of their fellow "labbies". Most employees at LANL are happy with LANS, understand the need for new policies, and are working hard to make the lab a better place. They know that security and safety are the top proprieties.

Get your news from THE source... the official LANL blog! You'll get the "real story" and find out what the majority of your fellow employees have to say about LANL's bright future under the steady hands of LANS leadership. After watching the LANS executive team perform over the last few years, all I can says is... these guys are GOOD! We are so lucky.

Anonymous said...

Nice ... finally something good comes out of LANL - a nice rack

Anonymous said...

It is legal, if the increase is significant (more then 10% is my guess) it also allows you to change plans...or drop them if you want.

Anonymous said...

Puke.

Anonymous said...

Knapp has made more enemies in Los Alamos county than any manager since Admiral Butthead. In time, he'll get his due.

11/20/09 3:16 PM

While Knapp has gotten alot of visibility for his Butthead tactics, I want to bring to attention Knapp's Deputy organ grinder monkey Craig Leasure. Brett carries fuzzy little Craig on his shoulder everywhere he goes. Craig really enjoyed witnessing Knapp personally throwing people out of their jobs in W-Division. Leasure has not been an innocent bystander during Knapp's death and destruction campaign. Craig will go down as someone who sold his soul to the devil.

Anonymous said...

11:28 PM you make me want to vomit.

Anonymous said...

11/20/09 11:28 PM, your post is totally disingenuous. Most of these folks opened their posts with a courtesy nod to LANS so they wouldn't get flushed. The text that follows your hand-picked excerpts is rather less flattering. For example, why don't you be honest for a moment, and reprint JJ's entire entry, where he goes on to say that the PBI structure is rewarding all of the wrong behaviors?

Anonymous said...

"11/20/09 11:28 PM"

That was great!

Anonymous said...

6:50 PM: "Refresh my memory please: What's the source of the "NNSA wants 5% attrition" figure?"


NNSA's demand for a 5% attrition rate at LANL during FY2010 was exposed in an article in the Los Alamos Monitor back around early May of this year. The reporter looked through the budget details in the NNSA's budget and noticed that NNSA/LASO was calling for a 1300 employee reduction at LANL in FY2010. LASO immediately "corrected" this figure, saying it was a mistake on their part. They then announced that they were aiming for was a 5% attrition rate at LANL during this current fiscal year.

Anonymous said...

Still no signs that the morale survey results have been leaked to the blog.

LANS is probably keeping these results under an extremely tight lock-and-key. I doubt employees will ever be given access to the actual results. We'll only hear a highly filtered version that has been carefully "sanitized for our protection" by LANS upper management.

Greg Close said...

@ 11/21/09 5:38 AM, re: rates increasing mid-year

Hmmm... well... while its definitely legal to increase rates mid-year, it's questionable whether it's entirely ethical to pass along a rate increase mid-year if you know you'll need one during a current Open Enrollment period. Or, at least without communicating during the OE period that rates may change mid-year due to whatever.

I haven't been in touch with my old compadres, but this strikes me as odd, to say the least. I will give them the benefit of the doubt unless there's something more substantial to support that claim. I knew there were issues with premium calculations as I was on my way out, but I didn't think it was at the stage where the employee portions would get hiked, mid-year.

Also, regarding the amount the IRS considers to be a "substantial increase" - that's a red herring. Truly, Sec 125 of the tax code states that employees can have pre-tax deductions for benefits if those deductions are determined annually, prior to the tax year. If the rates change by almost any amount, serious consideration should be given to opening up a life event. If I enrolled in a less expensive EPO, then had my rates in that EPO increase to within x% of the more expensive PPO, it's reasonable to assume I might want to change plans. I guess if everything goes up the same factor, it would be six one/half dozen of the other.

Anonymous said...

Leasure is nothing more than Knapp's lap dog. He isn't as shrewd as Knapp, nor does he have the air cover from Mikey. He is just as vindictive and careless not to mention incredibly stupid and vane. Not surprisingly he aligns well with Bechtel corporate. Ultimately, his fall from grace will parallel Bret's. It is only a matter of time 'till judgement day catches up with them both for the vile, contemptible vermin that they are. I will enjoy that day just as much as you, 7:11. Meanwhile, the weapons program is a shambles under their leadership; it may never recover.

Anonymous said...

Take it easy on 11/20/09 11:28 PM. Mikey doesn't pay these guys much for getting on this blog to cheer for LANS!

Anonymous said...

Bechtel in the news:

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/11/21/AR2009112102323.html

Safety issue lurks under Dulles rail bridge plan
Federal transit agency investigates delay in testing foundations built in 1977

... The contractor, a joint venture of Bechtel Infrastructure, the lead partner, and URS (formerly Washington Group International), negotiated with Virginia officials to design and build the line. The FTA is paying $900 million of the cost. The agency monitors the performance of the airports authority, which oversees Dulles Transit Partners.

Anonymous said...

Leasure is a survivor. He's been hovering near the highest levels of the weapons program for over a decade - outlasting the likes of Earle Marie Hanson, Rich Mah, and Fred Tarantino already.

Anonymous said...

Saw this in the news this morning. The old Admin Building is finally about to come down:

-
Los Alamos Demolishing Old Lab Buildings (KOAT-TV, Nov 21, 2009)

Lab To Use Federal Stimulus Money On Project

LOS ALAMOS, N.M. -- Los Alamos National Laboratory plans to demolish a two-story, former administration building that is among a number of Manhattan Project and Cold War-era structures slated for cleanup.

The lab will use federal stimulus money on the project.

Laboratory, congressional and other dignitaries plan a ceremony Dec. 1 marking the demolition of the former administration building, the first major demolition funded by stimulus money.

A large excavator will begin breaking down the roof and the walls of the building that day.

Los Alamos lab received $212 million in stimulus funds for environmental cleanup and monitoring.
-

Anonymous said...

Ha! Trust the local news to get the facts wrong. It's a THREE story (above ground) building.

What about the Be contamination that was found several years ago? What about asbestos? What about the entrance to the tunnel that runs to Dulce?

Anonymous said...

Lots of remembrance of good times are in that old TA-3 Admin Building. Not so many in the new NSSB "mausoleum".

Anonymous said...

Ha! Trust the local news to get the facts wrong. It's a THREE story (above ground) building.

The blog isn't doing much better with facts.

SM-43, the old Admin building, is FOUR stories on the east and west sides, above grade. It is two stories in the center section where the auditorium is. There is one floor below grade. One used to be able to walk across the roof of the second floor between the east and west sides of the third floor.

The director's office was on the fourth floor, east. We used to always complain about what went on the fourth floor.

Now we complain about what happens on the NSSB 7th floor. Maybe it's because the air is thinner up there.

Anonymous said...

Naturally, stimulus money goes FIRST to the demolition of the old Admin bldg because it "bothers" Mikey. Who gives a rats ass about the contamination and the rest of the town site over at TA-21. Mikey you selfish bastard.

Anonymous said...

Is it just me, or does it seem as if many that contribute to this blog are obsessed with conspiracy and/or are just plain paranoid. Perhaps "Mikey" the omnipotent is, indeed, behind anything and everything that happens at the Laboratory. After all, he is the Director! That said, suggesting that the old Ad. Bldg is being demolished because "it bothers Mikey" is pushing the envelope. Are you sure Brett Knapp isn't behind this to hide evidence of inappropriately firing highly productive scientists and engineers? And the plot thickens...

Anonymous said...

"conspiracy and/or are just plain paranoid."

I would say paranoid. You can make rational people crazy by putting them in insane circumstances for prolonged periods of time. For example why was the lab stood down by Nanos? His explanation made no logical sense especially since it was only week later it was known that the disks did not exist. So why was the stand down for so long? The mind goes through great contortions to explain it. Why does congress hate us? What is the rational? What is the real purpose of putting Bechtel in? The original reason was that it was to make thing more efficient but it has done the opposite. Why so much silence from the Director? In other words things do not make sense if you take them for face value. Our brains are designed to
find rational explanations for things and we when we do not find the answers the possible explanations become increasingly more elaborate. Anything becomes possible at LANL, a minor safety incident could cause a major news story....or it could not, you have no idea. A security incident could cause a congressional hearing...or it could not. From the past data no clear future trajectory can be calculated however a vast series of exponetially divergent possibilities is consistent with the past so anything is as possible as anything else. Is the building be demolished because it is old and cost to much to maintain? Perhaps but it is just as likely to be some conspiracy.

Anonymous said...

oh 9:20, we have been trying to get TA-21 cleaned up for years, but now the "Admin Bldg" ranks out in priority? Puh-lease, don't be such a dumb cow. Really.

Anonymous said...

I'm perplexed why some of you are treating TA-21 / Ad Bldg as a tradeoff. Both are underway, both are progressing. The back lot of the Ad Bldg has looked like the Black Hole for several months as all the furniture's been removed. I am kind of glad for that now-useless carcass to be removed from the center of TA-3. It's just a bitter reminder of a better past.

Anonymous said...

7:44 PM, correct except that the east side of the Ad Bldg had two basement levels, not just one. (I guess you did say "below grade" so technically you are still correct; the grade is lower on the east side).

Anonymous said...

You are right, 11/22/09 9:59 PM, it is nearly impossible to say whether a given order from above came from a crazy or a mean person, or both. After a while, though, as the data accumulates, it becomes clear that it is most often the latter.

More precisely, it seems that crazy people originate 60% of all orders around here and mean people, about 80%. The overlap is very significant, and includes, e.g., Admiral Nanos' shutdown, D'Agostino's contract with Bechtel, or Anastasio's urine tests.

Anonymous said...

"..don't be such a dumb cow. Really."

11/22/09 10:06 PM


It sounds like LANL is full of a bunch of "Bessies" and not sheeple. Is this considered a step up or a step down in employee status?

Anonymous said...

The US government will be required to drastically shrink in the next few years. That includes huge cuts to the NNSA work force. There will be no choice about it...

-
Wave of Debt Payments Facing US Government (Nov 23, NY Times)

...With the national debt now topping $12 trillion, the White House estimates that the government’s tab for servicing the debt will exceed $700 billion a year in 2019, up from $202 billion this year, even if annual budget deficits shrink drastically. Other forecasters say the figure could be much higher.

In concrete terms, an additional $500 billion a year in interest expense would total more than the combined federal budgets this year for education, energy, homeland security and the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

The potential for rapidly escalating interest payouts is just one of the wrenching challenges facing the United States after decades of living beyond its means.
-

Anonymous said...

LANL has a fantastic future ahead of it! Get behind your LANS management team and let's make this place better than ever.

LANS is bringing in lots of good business expertise from our excellent business partners over at Bechtel and BWXT to help revive the lab. The official LANL blog is the place to go to find out what's really happening at LANL. Now is the time to make a decision to strongly support LANS as it opens up LANL to new possibilities.

Work harder, obey all the rules, and support the LANS management team; you'll be surprised at just how far you can go if you follow this path to greatness!

Anonymous said...

LANS... an example of excellence in action!

Feel the change. Become part of the team. Together, we can make anything happen!

Fred deSousa said...

Hi all,

The building being demolished is 21-210 at TA-21. That detail was included in the news release but apparently the Associated Press left it out.

There are currently no Recovery Act funds being used for demolition outside TA-21, nor are there any plans to do so.

Hope that clears things up a bit,

Fred deSousa
LANL Communications Office

Anonymous said...

For those LANS in the LANS management team urging us to use the LANS performance blog, I can't access the blog off-site even with a crypto-card. If you want people to read it, you need to fix the problem.

Anonymous said...

I take it that Fred deSousa's comment means that the costs for demolishing the old Admin building are coming straight out of the lab's operating budget (overhead accounts, etc.)? That is the way I always heard it would be done.

Also, anyone know what the final cost will be for bringing down this old building and cleaning up the grounds? Is asbestos abatement going to be a concern?

Anonymous said...

Hey, Fred, just curious, but (a) do you have access to any of the LANS survey results, and (b) could you please forward them on to this blog? We won't tell anyone you sent them over, honest.

Anonymous said...

Wow! I think that is honestly the first communique I have ever received from the LANL communications office. Thanks, Fred. If it isn't too much trouble, could you please communicate the results of the recent employee survey? Use simple sentences; we're not too bright, you see.

Anonymous said...

More fines for LANL....

"NM fines Los Alamos lab nearly $1M"

Associated Press - Nov 23, 2009

LOS ALAMOS, N.M. (AP) - The New Mexico Environment Department has fined Los Alamos National Laboratory nearly $1 million for failing to monitor nearby groundwater and surface water for pollution.

The department announced Monday it would assess a $960,000 penalty against the northern New Mexico nuclear weapons lab.

Environment Secretary Ron Curry says reliable monitoring is needed to determine whether hazardous pollution from the lab's radioactive waste dump is reaching groundwater or the Rio Grande.

The department says the lab and the Department of Energy refuse to monitor radionuclides, like plutonium.

Lab spokesman Fred deSousa says the lab is monitoring groundwater and radionuclides as requested by the state.

He says 23 monitoring wells were installed in the past year and seven more are planned.

Anonymous said...

Both NNSA and LANS upper management have been hinting that the lab has too many employees and that they want to see attrition. However, if you check out the LANL external job listings...

www.hr.lanl.gov/JobListing/index.aspx?JobType=LANL&RecScope=External

...you'll quickly see that LANL is looking to fill a lot of high tech positions, many of them at elevated 4,5 and 6 levels!

From this you might deduce the following: LANS and NNSA don't want to reduce the size of the scientific work force at LANL. What they want is to replace current scientists with new hires that can be obtained at much lower cost, especially in terms of future benefits and liabilities.

You can expect the "N-rank" system being rolled out by LANS to be part of this grand plan. Just don't expect LANS to honestly tell you about this plan. It would probably get them into both political and legal trouble if they did.

Anonymous said...

10/22 9:59 pm: " For example why was the lab stood down by Nanos? His explanation made no logical sense especially since it was only week later it was known that the disks did not exist. So why was the stand down for so long?"

It is because the Lab was hijacked by the C-student training people who convinced Nanos that a long, convoluted period of staged training and re-certification of all employees was required to 1) ensure such a mishap never occurred again, and 2) assuage those in congress who still threatened, believably or otherwise, to close LANL permanently. Nanos bought it, and the rest is history. The facts of the non-existing missing disks may have been "known" early, but they were not believed by those with extreme power over LANL until much later, mostly due to the overreaction of Nanos in the first place.

Anonymous said...

...lab spokesman said that LANS management is monitoring recent survey results to determine if any further action is warranted...

Isn't working for Bechtel just swell?

Anonymous said...

"..lab spokesman said that LANS management is monitoring recent survey results to determine if any further action is warranted..."

As in: "Morale could be a little lower. We need to come up some more depressing policies to force on the peons to keep them from doing any productive scientific work."(?)

Anonymous said...

...please where can I buy a unicorn?

Anonymous said...

Have not heard much regarding PADGS these days. How is Reese doing? Anything good/bad from there? What has become of all the ADTR staff (Burns, Blair, Bynum - hmmm there is something unsai in the 3 B's). What about the program re-organization that was started, is it finished yet? A information would be helpful.

Anonymous said...

Well you see there is someone in your HR staff who is married to someone who works for the state gov...they r trying it out 1st in the state GoV and its not boding well, so they r trying to fix it...

Anonymous said...

Survey results are supposed to be presented to the Division Leader level at a Leadership Summit in December.

Anonymous said...

Well you see there is someone in your HR staff who is married to someone who works for the state gov...they r trying it out 1st in the state GoV and its not boding well, so they r trying to fix it...

11/24/09 6:34 PM

Huh?? Alert! Clueless teenage texter on the loose!

Anonymous said...

Poster 9:33 pm (re. lab job ads), lots of people have left LANL but the employees never hear about it any longer. LANS seems to have taken on the policy of not making any announcements when staff decide to up and leave. The only time anything is announced is when the person who leaves happens to come from the management ranks.

People are "disappearing" all over LANL these days. That is why you see this flurry of job ads. These staff losses along with the crazy new policies are beginning to seriously hurt LANL's ability to meet commitments for projects and compete against the other national labs.

In looking over the comments made on the "official" LANL blog, it appears that most of the other national labs (ORNL, SNL) have far less restrictive computer policies and are using this advantage to win business away from LANL. Not only is LANS driving the best staff away, but their policies are now crippling the ability to compete against the other labs! One commenter on the "official" blog even mentioned the fact that both ORNL and SNL allow WiFi in their non-secure areas for conferences, etc. None of the other labs is eager to hold conferences at LANL any longer because it is like stepping back into the computer Dark Ages (no easy checking of their email, etc). Many of these comments on the lab's "official" blog make for sad reading. LANS seems intent on killing this lab off bit by bit.

Anonymous said...

"Well you see there is someone in your HR staff who is married to someone who works for the state gov...they r trying it out 1st in the state GoV and its not boding well, so they r trying to fix it...

11/24/09 6:34 PM

Huh?? Alert! Clueless teenage texter on the loose! "

I know TEXT and will translate
6:34PMs post.

"My sister who works at the LANL HR office has heard from her husband who works in Santa Fe with the state goverment that members
of the state goveerment have been briefed on the results of the LANNs survey. Richardson did not buy the spin that the results really are not that bad. LANLs is not trying to figure out how to make the results different."

Anonymous said...

11:08 Thanks for your post. You understand, of course, that every LANL program that Anastasio, Knapp, and McMillan conveniently lose to Livermore is a double bonus for the wrecking crew upon return, don't you? Ever wonder why Livermore now fires more Los Alamos hydrotests than DARHT? Here is a hint. It isn't because of their superior capabilities. These guys know exactly what they are doing, for whom, and why.

Anonymous said...

11/24 12:04
Richardson cares? What's his angle?

Anonymous said...

Talk about absurd lab policies, 11:08... just about all software orders at LANL now require the sign-off of your Division leader plus an exemption granted by the CIO before it can be ordered. It's insane!

Even many of the products from large developers like Microsoft, Adobe and MATLAB now require a CIO exemption before they can be ordered. And if the CIO office gives a product an exemption to a particularly staff member, this does NOT mean that the next person who orders the very same product won't be required to go through the same exemption process before they can obtain the same product!!!

LANS is driving the lab into the ground with this type of nonsense. It's as if the staff are be told to go out and and bring in additional funding, but do it with your hands tied behind your back and your legs bound in chains. Yet, as bad as it is with LANL cyber policies, the recent GAO report says it's still not enough! I shudder when I think about what's probably coming next in terms of new policies.

From the looks of it, LANS has recently started up a "We hear you!" campaign about these policy constraints to make the staff feel better. Do you believe them?

Anonymous said...

11/24 12:04
Richardson cares? What's his angle?

11/25/09 8:16 AM


Hard to say, but he was head of DOE at one time, knows LANL well, and is in the same political party that now runs Congress and that placed Dr. Chu into the top position over at DOE HQ. I can imagine some interesting phone conversations going on between the Governor's office and DOE over the LANS survey results. Not that anything might come of it, though.

Anonymous said...

Richardson may be unhappy about the survey results, but only because they exist and will have to be made public. History shows that he has no problem with low morale at LANL, which he single-handedly created as Energy Secretary when he raked John Browne over the coals in the wake of the Wen Ho Lee revelations.

Anonymous said...

"Well you see there is someone in your HR staff who is married to someone who works for the state gov...they r trying it out 1st in the state GoV and its not boding well, so they r trying to fix it...

11/24/09 6:34 PM

Huh?? Alert! Clueless teenage texter on the loose! "

I know TEXT and will translate
6:34PMs post.

"My sister who works at the LANL HR office has heard from her husband who works in Santa Fe with the state goverment that members
of the state goveerment have been briefed on the results of the LANNs survey. Richardson did not buy the spin that the results really are not that bad. LANLs is not trying to figure out how to make the results different."


NOPE, let me explain in more detail..

You have a woman who works in HR that is married to a COS in New Mexico GOV who just did a survey, go search survey in new mexican, tie it together if you can....

Give you a hint..$%#RC...is the name of the GoV Agency who is having same problems..I am not putting names..look them up yourself...

Anonymous said...

6:33, you are still damn near incoherent. Not completely, but damn near. Anyway, I don't remember the LANS survey asking much of anything about ethics. (Probably they knew how that would turn out). So what's your point again?

Anonymous said...

6:33, you are still damn near incoherent. Not completely, but damn near. Anyway, I don't remember the LANS survey asking much of anything about ethics. (Probably they knew how that would turn out). So what's your point again?

You really think this is all done only from LANL? What is wrong with you? LANL goes deeped within GOV then you could possibly imagine. It is you thta is incoherent. I have looked at your survey and they are both the same, just different ueses of words. Learn the english language, its not math and quit insulting people here. You look like a childish basher, but wait thats probably your job. DISINFORM.

For the rest connect the dots.

Anonymous said...

You really think this is all done only from LANL? What is wrong with you? LANL goes deeped within GOV then you could possibly imagine. It is you thta is incoherent. I have looked at your survey and they are both the same, just different ueses of words. Learn the english language, its not math and quit insulting people here. You look like a childish basher, but wait thats probably your job. DISINFORM.

For the rest connect the dots.

11/29/09 3:49 PM

Wow, you really need to get some help. With your anger, your willingness to fling around unsupported allegations, and with your English spelling and grammar. Want to be taken seriously? Act serious.

Anonymous said...

11/28/09 6:33 PM is Tom Bowles, or his wife or his daughter. Done. Let it be.

Anonymous said...

11/28/09 6:33 PM is Tom Bowles, or his wife or his daughter. Done. Let it be.

11/29/09 9:01 PM

Yikes. Cryptic incomprehensible crap abounds on this thread! Why in hell even bother posting if you can't bring yourself to tell the whole story? WTF are you afraid of as anonymous?? What do you think you are helping by posting this garbage?

Anonymous said...

I connected the dots and the last name comes up with Mayfield. All it took was going to the website and looking up the Chief of Staff and yes we have a HR Woman with last name of Mayfield. It looks like it checks out.

Anonymous said...

So, I got really drunk and stoned the other night and suddenly 6:33/3:49's rants made some kind of sense.

Look for the PRC ethics survey stories at sfnewmexican.com. I think what our lunatic poster is trying to point out is that the PRC tried to avoid a FOIA release of their internal survey results by claiming that the free-form comment section drew a lot of scathing criticisms of individuals that were outside the scope of the survey topic. Presumably the point is that LANS would use the same tactic.

Anonymous said...

"Presumably the point is that LANS would use the same tactic."

11/30/09 3:48 PM


Why, of course they will. LANS Legal just need a few extra months to get their arguments in place for non-disclosure of the survey statistics.

In the end, lab employees will be fed a shit-sandwich by RLMs regarding the results of this embarrassing survey and by next year at this time it will be completely forgotten.

Greater weight to behavioral components within PeforM will be used to ensure that "bad morale" will results in low performance scores in future years -- Viola, problem resolved, LANS style!!! Baa, baa, baa....

Anonymous said...

It's only taken a little over a month and employees are already beginning to forget about the morale survey fiasco. This LANS mess will die a quick death. By April, it will all be forgotten as word of the FY2011 budget start to come around and employees prepare for a further dose of LANL downsizing (excuse me, I mean... "right-sizing". I'm still new at this LANS-speak thing).