Saturday, March 05, 2005

Why Now?

From Anonymous:

Folks, before we rush out to purchase that bottle of bubbly to celebrate today's news leak that UC is hunting for a replacement for our beloved director, pause for a moment and stop to think: why now? UC has been silent through this entire process. Even after the FBI reported that there was no missing CREM. Especially after Physics Today reported that LANL's safety record was pretty damn good, bearing no resemblance to Nanos' claims regarding our safety record.

Why now? Could it be the release, just two days ago, of Todd Kaupilla and John Horne's account of the actual events surrounding the CREM incident?

Yes, it could be that.

Could it be that UC would like to try to staunch the flow of retirees and younger scientists leaving LANL for better places to work?

Yes, it could be that.

Could it be that UC has no intention of doing anything more than putting on a show of looking for a replacement for Nanos, and then throwing up their hands and saying "We tried, but we can't find anybody"?

Yes, it could be that.

Do you trust that UC is looking after our best interests, or could it be that UC is trying to perform damage control, without actually having to make any difficult decisions.

Yes, it could be that, too.

Maybe it finally registered on the University of California that the Los Alamos, Livermore and Berkeley contracts are being competed because of allegations of mismanagement. Therefore, to retain one of the worst mismanagers in the history of science in a position of responsibility is not a formula that can precipitate the bright crystals of success. The longer that mismanager remains associated with the University of California the more difficult it will be for the University to lay any credible proposal on the table.

Perhaps also they feel that no one else is going to bid, and they can get away by taking the path of least resistance. Problem with that approach, however, is that they really are not going to fool anybody, and staff will continue to migrate out.
Before we get too carried away criticizing UC for hiring and keeping Nanos, remember that starting after Harold Agnew resigned the directorship in the late '70s, the AEC/ERDA/DOE decided to take a much larger role in the selection of a new director. This included essentially having veto power over the finalist.
First, there is no mention of when a possible change would take place. Second, remember that Foley and Brooks (both former Navy) are still "in charge". They picked Nanos, so who do you think they will pick to possibly replace him?
No I don't believe Foley & Brooks will decide to remove Nanos. I believe the leaked news of the search for a new director was designed to try to fool people into deciding not to retire or quit their positions at LANL.
The "leak" (if that's what it is, rather than a reporter hearing it from one of the "senior figures" being sounded out for the position) would make no sense coming from UC if they didn't intend to replace Nanos. It only serves to undermine him. The result is both a guy they can't control and a guy who can't control his subordinates. That's just too dangerous to UC. If somebody in UC leaked the information, it could be to force the hands of Foley and Brooks.
I guess when I think about it all - I keep coming to the same conclusion - there is, quite simply, no one left with any credibility. I just no longer believe anything anyone says.

NNSA can say whatever they want - I definitely don't believe them. Brooks? Be serious.

I no longer believe anything St. Pete says.

LANL management? Yeah, right! They've borrowed from their future credibility. It'll take years for them to get back to zero.

UC? Foley obviously registers a big 0 on the credibility scale.

So I guess an obvious question is: Who, if anyone, has any credibility?
I don't believe you.

(No, I'm not a troll. That was a joke.)
Get over it! No body cares if you quit. Have the courage to "just do it" instead of threatening to. The earth will not stop revolving around the sun if a few overpaid underworked researchers leave.
To 6:10pm

We can not get over it. If the
good people leave for other jobs, and they will, than
DOE will shut this place down. It will
have no value. It is a free market you
see, the good win in the end and the
bad lose. I know where I will be, do
you know where you will be? I think
you do so I know why you act the way
you do. Too bad, you should have gotten better grades and gone to a
better school.
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