Friday, January 20, 2006

The final word, hopefully, on the port scan of my web server by the Federal Judiciary

[Photo retrieved from NSA Archives--Brad]


"I find the timing interesting, but I make no judgment or supposition about the motivations," Roberts said.

It was interesting to see that the most aggressive effort to probe for information was while the feds knew that the blog owner was on travel. How convenient. As the feds can now see, the owner was smarted then them.

All of us must realize that are our phones, e-mails and most any type of communications are monitored and achieved, but who cares. Sure they want to know who is saying what and why, in hopes to find a reason to stop you from talking or evidence to bring on charges, but "that can not be a reason" to stop you from posting your concerns in protection of what "is yours". This separation of LANL and soon to be LLNL from the primary UCRP retirement system is nothing but a self serving move on the UC Regents behalf to assure that if and when the LANSLLC fails, there will be no affect on "the good old boy" retirement fund.

I will state again and for the record that I see this act of separation as "breech of contract" on the UC Regents and DOE's behalf and firmly believe that it should be taken to court whereby it will be resolved in favors of "all UC employees" regardless of their "site specific" ideology. Bah Humbug .....
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A couple of things, Jim:

First, there is no such thing as "a simple port scan". Port scanning is decidedly unfriendly behaviour. It is the first line of attack used by hackers attempting to break into a machine. Most ISP's will drop your account if they catch you doing it. The only time port scanning is acceptable is when it is self-initiated to test one's own machine for vulnerabilities.

Second, being port scanned by a Federal Judiciary host is a big deal, whether or not it was done accidentally.

Well Jim I wish I knew how to lock down my machine from any outside intruders or port scan entirely, other then by using the ON/OFF switch, but to the feds advantage I do not. Again I guess it doesn't matter because I am going to do as I wish regardless. I think and again this is my opinion, they were looking for e-mails and users names so that they can make the association whereby they can compile a list. Jim Hill comes up in the LANL phone book with all the needed details so you have nothing to worry about. The cross-hairs are already on your back.
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I agree with Doug that the port-scan is more than just a happenstance. It takes a decisive, concerted effort to conduct a port-scan of a specific machine off the local network as was done by the Judiciary. This was way more than a simple stupid mistake and should be recognized for what it really is.
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Hey Jimmy Bob,

Do you know what an international piece sign is? C;###

By your post I would assume that you are leaving LANL and that I commend you on, since I am doing the very same, soon. I will assure you that I have lead many more issues at much higher levels then UC Regents and DOE. They are very small potatoes to fry. I have dealt with people from the President of the United States on down for the last fifty-two years in the very same manner. Regardless of what you say or feel I have been and always will be responsibly for taking down some very big dogs, if for no other reason then by bringing issue that are unjust to light to people who cannot thing beyond the tips of their noses.

Have you ever given any thought that by publishing the article in the newspaper it gave coverage not only to the blog and to the cause? Be very glad you have a editor of a newspaper that IS NOT a gutless swine as you imply I am. The more attention this blog gets the better chance you have of saving your retirement. Think my man, think. I know it will be hard for you, but please give it a try.
Jim, you are consistently wrong on this issue.

"My point was that this kind of thing happens all the time ..."

It does not happen all the time. It is only infrequently that any of my machines have been attacked.

Also, I encourage you to change the tone of your contributions here. Attacking other contributors, the Los Alamos Monitor, etc. is not behavior that is appreciated here.

OK, I'm cranky today. I still think the Monitor article was silly but I shall nonetheless try to cast oil upon the waters.

I read the monitor article and thought it was a little over the top.
Occam's Razor probably applies here. You've likely got a scared IT
contractor over at "US Courts" that had one of his systems infected
with a Trojan (that wanted to "spread") and he's trying to cover his
ass. If it's found out his system was infected, he might lose his
job. Therefore, that's why you hear the crazy explanations.

When the Feds really want to monitor your system, then, trust me,
you'll probably never know about it. They'll show up at the door
of an ISP or corporation or somewhere along the internet backbone
at a point that carries your traffic and you'll be none the wiser
for what has happened. Let's all just hope that when these things
happen that the people who do the real tapping at least have a court
warrant for what the are attempting to surveil. This is America,
and here we believe in the law and our rights to privacy. In fact,
we believe in these things so highly that we fought a revolution
and risked life and limb to achieve these rights.
One more comment:

Los Alamos is a small town, and the Los Alamos Monitor is definitely a small-town paper. Regardless, I am grateful that the Monitor is willing to occasionally print stories that are important and meaningful to the community.

good2go said,

"When the Feds really want to monitor your system, then, trust me,
you'll probably never know about it."

Well, I don't trust you, because you are anonymous. I do agree with you though. I know enough about IT and security to know that there are plenty of ways to watch a machine that are not detectable from the machine being observed.

As to the actual, real, reasons for my machine having been attacked, well, either we will never know, or we have already been told.

Mr. b-ohica,

Thank you for striving to heighten awareness of the potential impact the proposed UCRP-LANL cloning could have. I sincerely appreciate your efforts. IMHO, however, your postings could be more effective if you avoided hyperbole and eliminated incorrect statements; the situation is grave enough without them.

BTW, I understand the acronym bohica; but what's up with the "-" (the hyphen)? If it is a schematic shaft, then I know the schematic representation of the "o".
When it became necessary to obtain a "handle" / "user name" instead of "anon" on the blog it would not take bohica, so I put in the "-" and now all is well. So there you go.

The previous key strokes of which I believe that you are referring to were absolutely appropriate in lieu of using the actual words that applied to my feelings at the time; especially after being blasted or accused for being something that I am not by the assailant. But that's water over the damn and we will move beyond that now that we back to a civilized forum where facts and suspicions are distributed in order for all to think about. If you have anything you wish to contribute that we do not know about, please do. I am interested in finding out what happened at the town meeting that was to be held or may have already been held. Any information that may aid us in succeeding?
All I know is what I read here; otherwise, I'm just a mushroom. I did have a thought I might run by you: Would it be possible to identify the highest positioned LANL manager for whom the cloned UCRP-LANL should be a concern? And, might that person be persuaded to champion the cause?
Doug Roberts, LANL Community, and the Residents of New Mexico,

It is curious to read of this port scan issue. I thought you might be interested in the following comments . . .

We write today in recognition of Doug Roberts and your collective efforts to solve problems. Not too many months ago, this blog was the catalyst for substantive changes. You bear the fruits of that change.

Today, you have a new perspective. We write today to offer another solution. This time, the problem is something that seems much larger. But it is something well within your control to solve.

Here is the link: Click

As of late, it has come into fashion for some to suggest that national leadership is stuck. This may be true. But this blog was the catalyst for freeing you of what is absurd.

Bluntly, the issue is the President and the larger national effort. In light of your particular positions within the Department of Energy, you may not necessarily be comfortable publicly stating a position on matters of national politics.

Putting aside the issue of religion and politics, we write to simply send a word of hope. Although you individually may not feel as though you can do anything, we write to let you know there are forces behind the scenes working to resolve this dilemma.

Indeed, some of you may be in a position to do something, but this is not a letter in search of opportunity, nor a plea for your ear. Rather, this is a simple reminder: Your voices have been heard.

Many months ago, some of you expressed frustration. Your calls were answered. In the meantime, there have been many efforts. Some of them are known, others will be shared. With time, you will learn more.

Today, we offer you a word of thanks. For it was your struggle, your plea, and your determination that was the catalyst to make this possible.

It was your work which drove us to find a solution. Today, we are pleased to announce that we have discovered a method to impeach the President, despite the RNC control of the House of Representatives.

Today let it be known that each of you at the state level – whether you are in New Mexico, Illinois, California, Colorado, or elsewhere can individually arrive at work with a new sense of optimism. There is a method for the states to issue a proclamation, calling for the impeachment of the President of the United States.

This method was successfully tested against a sitting Federal Judge in 1903. The House refused to send the matter to the House Judiciary committee before ordering an investigation. Subsequently, the House Committee reviewed the matter, but failed to return a single position.

This did not matter. The House of Representatives has a precedent – it reminds us that a federal officer can be impeached through State Action. The Federal Judge was subsequently impeached.

Today, give yourself a brief moment to absorb the possibility. It is well within the scope of possibility that New Mexico could be the state which starts this process.

Your governor has an open meeting session once per month. He opens his door to the public, given members of the public the chance to raise an issue.

Perhaps you know of someone who may be interested in sharing this news: There is a way to impeach the President without going through the House Judiciary Committee.

Your governor will likely ask what you want him to do. Let him know you would like for him to review the information at the link, and meet with your states legislative leadership to have this discussed and put on the calendar.

That is all.

Perhaps some of you may wish to take the link, and put it in a summary format – have a tiny-url in bold letters on a single 8X10 piece of paper – and simply hand that to the governor. Perhaps you know of someone who likes to call into radio stations or write editorials – that too can be a way to call attention to this option. Perhaps you know of someone who has a spare day and would like to wait in line, personally talk to the governor, and hand him a piece of paper with the shortened URL – “here is the solution.”

Here is the URL:

Here is another URL as backup:

He will know what to do.

As will others. All you have to do is maintain hope – only one person has to take action; but we are a nation of almost 300 million. Only 1 state of 50 has to do anything – but there are 49 other states.

Even if this is not successful, there are others who may learn from your example – and find a new way – and force the RNC to face this issue today, in the local primaries, at the local level when they face questions from you.

Think of this – there are over 500 communities which have passed resolutions against the patriot Act. There is at least one state legislature that is likely to do the same at the state level – vote no against the RNC and President over the NSA warrantless surveillance.

It will only take one. And there are 300 million chances. Those are incredible odds. And they are in our favor.

Some may ask: What this will do. Simply, this will set the agenda, raise the issue, and other states citizens – just like you – may have hope: Something can be done.

Some have argued the RNC controls the Congress. That may be true, but they do not control your State Legislature – you do.

If your leadership refuses to discuss this issue – despite their power to do so – this may become an issue for the primaries and your state elections. Yes, the process may take time, but there is a solution and a reason for hope.

Regardless what you do, know there are 49 other states who also have this information. Perhaps they too will be inspired by your example.

Should you or your friends decide to take the day off from work and personally stand in line to meet with the New Mexico State Governor that is within the scope of possibility. Should you decide to raise the issue and personally meet with him, you will meet a man who has stared into the eyes of many world leaders – and made them blink.

There were times when he entered rooms noticed the tips of shoes in the corner of the room – and found they were Saddam’s revolutionary guards hiding behind the curtains. Your governor has done things that people have though unimaginable: Freed people from dictators, traveled vast distance to solve difficult problems, and in the end he gets results.

Even if your state chooses to take no action, know simply raising the issue may tip the balance. One person may be the right person – who can contact the right people to make the needed decision.

All that is needed is one state. In the meantime, this issue will eventually become an issue for the RNC to contend with. No longer do they set the agenda for America – the States do – and citizens can force the RNC to face this issue with a State Proclamation.

Your job is simply to do what you’ve always done: Continue with your work, and know that your example has inspired others to take up larger challenges.

Whether you do or do not do anything after you read this letter – know one thing, your work and this blog has inspired others to continue, find a solution, and move forward.

Thank you for your energy and know that in the end your work and focus contributed to the solution.

We do not need to wait until the 2006 election results. Action can be taken now. Whether you choose to participate or encourage others to read this information is up to you. Regardless, know there is a way and there is reason to have hope.

Best wishes and with great respect to you Doug, the LANL community, and the citizens and residents of New Mexico.

--- Constant -----
I would bet that none of them are even aware of what is going on and since they are probably in upper level management they will not pursue it or raise a finger to help, because as you well know they did not get there by questioning authority in any shape, form or fashion. As for me I have informed some higher ups with this issue and the first response I got was, "that's not legal". I in turn said , "well I guess you better do some reading because I we speak you are getting the shaft and are about to loose everything that you have worked for". I was then asked at that time to keep these people informed by e-mails by information that I get off the blog and news papers. At least I have five very important people involved. Now lets hope they themselves become proactive and nail the critters who concocted this to the wall.

My feelings are that the ones who can stop this have their own self interest in mind, such as Mike, Bret, Mara and McMillian. As you can see they are in position where they have theirs, and to hell with you. If I were them I wouldn't care neither. They have now jumped sides and moved to corporate America equation and you all know what that means. Can you says, " lack of morality and snakes in the grass". These are your new bosses.

Lets face it, you have been used, abused and tattooed. You are on your own and no one can resolve this individually. It must come from the efforts of the masses. So with that said, does it hurt yet or do we need to tighten the clamps a little harder?

The question really is, what are YOU doing to protect what is your? I hope the answer is not "NOTHING".

The bottom line is very clear in this article.

Down sizing is the name of the game and being done in the worse way possible, one that will not recruit new blood from the universities. I will go one step further and give you something else to think about. Would you like to wager that soon after the take over by LANSLLC you will see some positions of those who choose to stay be dissolved, but don't worry they will ask you to stay on in an entirely different position. Of course this offer comes with an option; you can have a job at the new pay rate or find one outside the gates of LANL. If you think not ask some of the people from other government facilities that have been taken over for profit. I mean how much do you think they are going to pay workers of a pit facility. I can only assume that the borders of NM are not that far from the Rio Grande.
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