Wednesday, November 02, 2005

Things I don't do since leaving LANL

Submitted by Anonymous:

Things I don't do since leaving LANL

As a former Technical Staff member with a Ph. D and Q clearance here is some stuff I don't do since leaving LANL:
** No invasive, demeaning 5-year updates for a security clearance.
** No car searches or showing badges at gates.
** No listening to fascist security folks talk about reporting a fellow worker if he drives a car I think he can't afford.
** No more realizing I just drove into a cleared area with my cell phone in the car.
** No more lectures from abusive, dysfunctional managers.
** No SOPs, OOPs, IMPs, LIMPS, work packages, LIGs, LIRs, IWDs whose main purpose seems to be covering somebody else's behind.
** No listening to petty-fogging, incompetent managers tell me that red tape and bureaucratic BS is the World's Greatest Science.
** No swearing to my martinet group leader that I really am with the program.
** No waiting for daily, written permission to use my workstation.
** No attending 60-year old facilities with that bombed-out look like maybe the Taliban just left.
** No more days of training, reading, forms and signatures for a routine 30 minute job.
** No more watching the Rat Patrol retrieve dead mice from my dilapidated office.
** No more sweating at my desk in the winter or summer.
** No more walking thru the Admin. Bldg and seeing titles like "Chief Assistant Associate Principal Vice-Deputy Director" and then waiting two years to get my name on my office door.
** No more listening to my deputy group leader expound for 30 minutes on changes to the latest form.
** No trying to get to a meeting in a building where the badge reader suddenly stops working.
** No scrounging at LANL Salvage for furniture after waiting six months on a signed purchase order.
** No more trying to get the online status of my purchase order and getting a message to download the Turkish character set.
** No more waiting a year to buy something that costs $200 and then finding out in Sept. I can spend $200K if the stuff is delivered in two weeks.
** No working at the whim of DOE bureaucrats who regard me and my fellows as incompetent, irresponsible teenagers.
** No more being told I'm unqualified to do a routine task but no one knows how to qualify.
** No more pretending that it is possible to build and test explosive weapons under a policy of zero tolerance for accident or injury.
** No more dealing with arrogant, mediocre LANL staff.
** No more big, bureaucratic science.

I'm a departed GL with a PE, Q clearance, and HRP. Here are some things I don't do since I left LANL at the end of Sep 05.
1. Read the blog and have it affect my stress level.
2. Hate going to work in the morning.
3. Spend 4-6 hours a day in worthless meetings.
4. Defend my budget to down-the-street managers who have no concept of what my organization does or how it does it.
5. Spend most of my time shielding my group from an abusive Division Director that's in over his head.
6. Get 75-100 e-mails a day.
7. Unload stress on my wife when I get home.
8. Drive an hour to get to a nice restaurant.
9. Drive 40 minutes to get to Walmart.
10. Take silly training either on-line or in a class.

What I miss are my friends and colleagues and my heart aches for them. I chose to leave and am so happy to be gone from the worst working environment I have ever experienced. My hope is that the new contractor makes swift and significant improvements for those dear to me who are left behind and wish to stay in Northern New Mexico.
Never Forget:

Workers with a high-level security clearance are in extreme
demand these days, esp. if they have a background in science
and computers. If you are un-happy with LANL, remember that
there are plenty of employers who would dearly love to hire
a smart scientist with a clearance background. Los Alamos
is not the center of the Universe, and if you don't feel
this environment is healthy or fun any longer, you have the
freedom to move to a better environment. Just be sure to
keep your clearance while you are making the job transition,
as it will greatly expedite the process.

For starters, try going over to "" and type in
the words "security clearance". Note how many special
job fairs are being held exclusively for security cleared
individuals. In fact, one was just held in ABQ on Nov 4th.

Around DC, these special job fairs are being held all over
the place, and workers with a TS/SSBI can generally expect
to grap a job that pays around a 30% to 40% premimum for
having that clearance. It's too bad that LANL is now
yanking Q clearances immediately upon leaving the lab.
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