Sunday, February 20, 2005

Until recently I had no plans to retire

From Anonymous:

I have been a technical staff member at the Lab for 24 years. Until recently I had no plans to retire because I enjoyed my technical work at the Lab. However, conditions have degenerated so badly since the work stoppage that I have decided to retire at the end of June. Nanos has allowed the bureaucrats to gain control of the Lab so that practically all we do is fill out useless forms and try to understand all the new confusing rules and procedures governing safety and security. Even when work gets back to “normal”, I believe that the added bureaucracy will be so onerous that very little technical work will get done. I believe a good safety program has to be based on simplicity (so that it can be understood by all) and must be graded so that the most dangerous situations are given the most attention. It is clear we have neither.

I have done my own independent analysis of the Lab’s safety record based on data reported to DOE and find that the Lab’s safety record exceeds the average for all DOE research contractors over the last three years and is good as or better than those of LLNL and SNL. Where did Pete get the numbers he presented at the last all hands meeting for reportable incidents and lost work days? By the way, the viewgraph he showed comparing various safety records has not been made available on the Lab web site, which is the norm for director’s presentations. I do not believe there was firm basis for stopping work at the Lab for such a long period of time on the basis of safety, which is now what the director is tying the shutdown to. As for security, it is clear from various briefings there never was any missing CREM and thus no damage to national security. Needed improvements to safety and security could have been targeted to organizations in the lab that were most in need of improvement rather than standing down the whole Lab. This mismanagement needs to end. I whole heartily support the petition to dump Nanos.

My observation of the safety incidents graph was that it was a flat line until July 2004, at which point it pitched upward. Letting people look at this graph too long might bring up "hard" questions.

I agree with the comments - including that I now intend to retire in June although if you had asked me two years ago, I would have hoped to work for another 7 or 8 years.
BUT: the bureaucrats take over is not new to Nanos- Jim Jackson really is the one who should get the credit. But Nanos is the first to make it clear that he only cares about the support-side. Remember when he came on-board, he said he spent his Navy career back-to-back with the accountants.
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