Tuesday, November 29, 2011


U.S. Court of Appeals in Denver Denies Administration's Attempt to Quash Appeal of Lower Court Decision which Allowed Los Alamos Plutonium Facility to Proceed

Contact: Thomas Hnasko, of Hinkle, Hensley, Shanor & Martin, L.L.P., (505) 660-3397 mobile (best this afternoon), (505) 982-4554 office; Lindsay Lovejoy, (505) 983-1800; Greg Mello (505) 265-1200

Today the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Judicial District ruled (pdf) in favor of the Los Alamos Study Group on a motion by the Department of Justice (DOJ) requesting dismissal of the Study Group's appeal of a May 2011 decision by a New Mexico federal district court which allowed the National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) and the Department of Energy (DOE) to continue working toward building a $4-6 billion plutonium facility at Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL).

The Study Group had claimed, and still claims in this appeal and in a second lawsuit filed in New Mexico federal court, that NNSA and DOE have never written an applicable environmental impact statement (EIS) for the facility, called the "Chemistry and Metallurgy Research Replacement Nuclear Facility" (CMRR-NF), that the agencies involved are violating the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), and that the project is proceeding illegally and must be halted while an applicable EIS is written. 

"This is good news -- very positive for us." said Study Group director Greg Mello.  "The Tenth Circuit has decided to hear our appeal and the federal agencies, which we believe are grossly violating NEPA, must now explain themselves before a panel of senior judges in Denver." 

In a separate positive ruling (pdf) yesterday for Study Group in their second NEPA case in New Mexico federal court, the court denied DOJ's attempt to transfer the new case to the Honorable Judith Herrera, who had ruled against the Study Group in the first case, the case now under appeal. 

Mello: "Congress passed NEPA to require federal agencies to take a hard look at alternatives to projects that will endanger the environment.  That "hard look" has never happened in this case.  The project has ballooned to ten or fifteen times the original cost estimates, is going to be delayed at least 14 years, the nuclear stockpile has declined by half, the original raison d'etre for the project has largely evaporated -- and yet there are no possible alternatives to this massive project?  This is NNSA's position, and it is absurd.  There are, in fact, several reasonable alternatives, as many in government know. 

"Regardless of this, NNSA and DOE cannot decide to build this or any project without first producing an applicable EIS.  Federal agencies cannot spend hundreds of millions of dollars implementing the first part of a project and then, and only when challenged, decide to write an alternative-free, post-hoc environmental report.  Such practices, should they be allowed, would effectively eliminate NEPA." 

Greg Mello
Los Alamos Study Group
2901 Summit Place NE
Albuquerque, NM 87106
505-265-1200 office
505-577-8563 cell

NYTimes Oped: A Nuclear Facility We Don’t Need By GREG MELLO

November 14, 2011  New York Times

A Nuclear Facility We Don’t Need

Los Alamos, N.M.
It has been over 20 years since the end of the cold war, and yet the United States continues to spend enormous sums on its nuclear arsenal and related programs. In fact, rather than looking for ways to save money in this budget-conscious time, the National Nuclear Security Administration is asking for even more money to build one of its most unnecessary projects yet: a second big plutonium facility at Los Alamos National Laboratory.
The facility, which the administration says it needs to produce more nuclear warhead cores, called pits, would cost between $4 billion and $6 billion to build, and roughly a quarter billion a year to operate. Strikingly, despite the decade (and about $450 million) spent developing the proposal, the administration still doesn’t have a firm cost estimate or a final design. That hasn’t kept it from asking for money, though: this year it is requesting an additional $270 million to continue planning, part of a proposed $621 million increase for warhead management.
A better cost estimate may be available in early 2013, when the final design nears completion, though the administration hopes to begin construction long before that, in January 2012, if Congress allows it. Even after that, experience strongly suggests that further cost increases are likely between now and 2023, when the project is expected to finally come online. By then it will be needed even less than it is now; by the time it is completed the entire nuclear arsenal, except for cruise missile warheads, will have been successfully upgraded without this investment.
The laboratory needs fewer grand ambitions, not more space. Its existing plutonium facility, which has about twice the space inside as the proposed one, already has a high-capacity manufacturing line that takes up just a third of the building. Why does the nuclear administration need to produce more pits, let alone at a faster rate? Scientists agree that the existing stock of pits will last a century or so without replacement. There are also large reserves of extra warheads and pits for each delivery system, more than enough to replace every warhead and bomb deployed.
The nuclear administration says it needs more capacity to facilitate large-scale production of pits for “replacement,” i.e., to produce new types of warheads. It optimistically claims that such new designs can be certified in the absence of nuclear testing. The new building would be built to handle the large steel tanks needed for the explosive “subcritical tests” and “scaled experiments” that are considered helpful in certifying these otherwise untested replacement warheads.
The new building would also house a large new vault containing “the plutonium stores of the nation,” as Don Cook, the administration’s deputy director, has said. Yet the administration already has nuclear storage facilities in South Carolina and Nevada, which are more than sufficient. Meanwhile, it is spending additional billions on other questionable plutonium facilities to dispose of excess plutonium around the country and is even emptying a large modern plutonium facility in Livermore, Calif.
One reason the facility’s estimated costs continue to rise is a new appreciation of how the region’s seismic profile affects the design of the facility. The proposed facility would sit above a thick layer of loose volcanic ash, which amplifies seismic accelerations and provides little resistance to sliding. The entire Los Alamos laboratory complex sits on a fault system capable of shallow magnitude 7.3 earthquakes that give rise to sharp high accelerations.
To top it off, the administration is still not even sure how to design the building: whether to anchor the bunkerlike structure deep in the mesa or let it “float” up near the surface, its upper part protected by earthen berms.
There are alternatives — simpler, faster, cheaper and safer ones — but the nuclear administration refuses to examine them. For example, it could make better use of existing facilities, which were very costly to acquire and are very expensive to maintain and make safe, but which are not being used efficiently. But the nuclear administration and its predecessor agency within the Department of Energy have been continuously on the Government Accountability Office’s watch list of agencies most prone to waste and poor management since the list began 20 years ago.
Even setting these criticisms aside, the case for building more nuclear weapons, at a time when the United States’ arsenal is already by far the most sophisticated and most expensive in the world is growing harder to make. The Congressional supercommittee, which will soon wrap up its plans for cutting federal spending, might or might not want to touch the politics of maintaining our nuclear arsenal — but cutting resources for this dangerous and unnecessary project should be something every member of Congress can get behind.
Greg Mello is the executive director of the Los Alamos Study Group, a nuclear disarmament advocacy organization.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Update on Los Conchas- LANL fire from CCNS

Concerned Citizens for Nuclear Safety via swcp.com 
show details 10:33 PM (9 hours ago)

Hi All,
One of the lessons of the Cerro Grande Fire, which burned over 47,000 acres during a two-week period in May 2000 in the same areas as the Las Conchas Fire, is that we can't trust the statements by the officials.  Their statements and data eventually end up in reports that say that there was no exposure.  For example, the Risk Assessment Corporation reported following the Cerro Grande Fire:

The cancer incidence risk from breathing any LANL-derived chemical or radionuclide released to the air during the fire was less than 1 chance in 1 million.

“Summary Report:  Analysis of Exposure and Risks to the Public from Radionuclides and Chemicals Released by the Cerro Grande Fire at Los Alamos,” p . 7 < http://www.racteam.com/docs/Cerro_Grande_Fire_Summary_Report.pdf >

But we know the opposite is true because of the stories people have told following the Cerro Grande fire.  For example, communities that had never had a case of childhood leukemia began to experience those cancers; animals in the Embudo Valley aborted; and very rare cancers have grown in residents living in communities downwind and downstream of LANL.  Many have died and we are so sorry.   

In that spirit, please check out the following website for photos and videos of the fire so that you can make your own decisions about whether to evacuate, or when to evacuate.  Remember the six “Ps” -  http://lacoa.org/PDF/ESP10/ESP_Bltn_Wildfires2-LACo_0410.pdf

  1. People and pets
  2. Papers, phone numbers and important documents
  3. Prescriptions, vitamins, and eyeglasses
  4. Pictures and irreplaceable memorabilia
  5. Personal computers (information on hard drives, memory and discs)
  6. “Plastic” (credit cards, ATM cards) and cash

*** More ***
1.  On the KOAT-TV website:  LOS ALAMOS, N.M. -- Dr. Michio Kaku discussed his concerns Tuesday for the hazardous materials housed at Los Alamos National Laboratory.
Kaku said around 20,000 to 30,000 barrels of plutonium contaminated waste is stored at the lab. That waste includes everything from gloves to fuel rods, according to Kaku.
“Plutonium is one of the most toxic particles known to science. A particle you can’t even see lodged in your lungs could cause lung cancer,” Kaku said. “What we’re worried about is what happens when the fires go right into these buildings and perhaps pop open some of these 55-gallon drums.”
ight now, Los Alamos National Lab officials said dangerous materials in the lab are secure and do not pose a threat.
ku said no one has ever fully tested the lab under real fire conditions.
at happens if the fire spreads to the very heart of the laboratory? At that point, we have to cross our fingers hoping that ‘secure sites remain secure,’” Kaku said.
ight 2011 by KOAT.com. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
Read more: http://www.koat.com/news/28386019/detail.html#ixzz1QdMhPysZ

2.  Bob Martin of KRQE-TV went up in a helicopter this afternoon.  You can see the fabric tents at Area G in the foreground and the fire moving in that direction.  http://www.krqe.com/dpp/weather/wildfires/bob-martin-special-aerial-web-report

To view the fire and Area G from satellite on your computer, go to the Nuclear Watch New Mexico blog to learn how to use Google Earth and the US Forest Service information to keep track of the fire.  http://www.nukewatch.org/watchblog/?p=838

    You want to focus on the red square areas north of State Road 4 and the location of the Area G fabric tents which store the 20,000 to 30,000 drums of plutonium contaminated wastes – about 3 1/2 miles northeast of the red squares.  You can see the four tents west of White Rock.  They are also south of the green east-west line.

    It appears the Google Earth updates the information about the fires across the U.S. by zooming out.  Then you have to zoom back in to see if it has updated the Las Conchas fire.

4.  And a big shout out and thank you to all of you who forwarded the Action Alerts to social media networks! We are grateful because we while we can talk about transuranic waste at Area G, we don’t know much about social media tools.

5.  There was a press conference today.  You can read about it at:  http://www.lamonitor.com/content/press-conference-offers-hope

Los Alamos County Update - June 28, 2011 4:30 PM
: Las Conchas Wildfire
Released: 4 hrs. ago
Los Alamos, NM - The Los Alamos County Council will host a town hall meeting tomorrow (Wednesday) with White Rock residents and those who have been evacuated from Los Alamos. A representative of the USFS will be on hand to answer questions about the fire. The meeting will be held at 2:00 p.m. at the White Rock Baptist Church (80 State Rt 4). Atomic City Transit will offer bus service from the two shelters to the meeting. Bus pick up times are: 12:45 p.m. at the Santa Claran Resort Center and 1:15 p.m. at the Cities of Gold Hotel Conference Center.
Media Advisory: Fire Chief Doug Tucker will give a Las Conchas fire update to the press at the Media Staging Area at 20th/Trinity at approximately 7 p.m. The County will continue to co-host Noon news conferences with LANL at the Media Staging Area until further notice.

7.  Air Quality Issues from the Incident Information System:  http://www.inciweb.org/incident/article/2385/12058/

8.  From Jean Nichols on Tuesday, June 28th in the evening:

Today I was given a medical type mask (AOSafety 1050 Pleats Plus Particulate Respirator Medium Large N95 NiIOSH)

It actually seems to help a lot when outside in the smoke, - at least it helps how my lungs feel. I believe these are the same kinds used in surgical situations.
They are much more comfortable than full respirators or construction dust masks. You can buy them at Walgreens or other pharmacies.  We should be asking the Governor or the Red Cross or FEMA  or someone in Public Health to make them available to everyone who wants one, especially those with respiratory issues. They could be given out at the food banks this week. While they probably won't help with the serious radionuclides, I'm sure they will help with some of the other airborne particulates.

9.  From Sheri Kotowski of the Embudo Valley Environmental Monitoring Group on Tuesday June 28th in the evening:
Hi Everyone,

Here's an up date on Las Conchas Fire air monitoring.

I spoke with NMED LANL Oversight at 2:30 PM. Steve Yanicak gave me the
rundown of air monitoring that is happening in and around the lab. They are
short staffed at the moment and they have a lot to do.

NMED changed out filters this morning on AIRNET (low volume) stations
(measuring gross alpha and beta radiation, isotopic uranium and plutonium,
americium, strontium) on the perimeter of LANL and at the airport. They will
have data back in seven days. They are also setting up high volume samplers
that will be analyzed for the same constituents as AIRNET and also for heavy

The lab has put out 60 additional air monitoring stations. Turn around time
on the data will should be very quick according to NMED Oversight. We should
start seeing data soon. I will find out how the public can access this

EPA is sending out 16 - 24 air monitoring stations. EVEMG is helping to
locate a half a dozen of them up here north east of the lab and in the
plume. They should be arriving tomorrow- Wednesday, and hopefully deployed
very quickly. There will be one located at the Embudo Valley Library. Other
locations are being worked out.

EPA is readying the ASPECT aircraft to begin flying at regular intervals
through the plume of the fire as early as tomorrow- Wednesday. This aircraft
is specially fitted with monitoring equipment and will be measuring
radioactivity as well as detecting other substances of concern.

The NMED Radiation Bureau is locating radiation detection equipment on the
roof top of the hospital in Española, and at locations in Alcalde, Pojoaque
and Nambe.

I hope you find this information useful.
Please feel free to contact me if you have questions. If I don't have
answers hopefully I will be able to find someone for you to talk to.

Please pass this information on.

Take care,

            505 579 4076      

10.  Please share this email with others.  And yes, our home page has been hacked; we’re working on it.    

Pray the Water Canyon fire line will hold the progress of the fire.   

Take care All,

Monday, June 27, 2011

Fire threatens Los Alamos- Mandatory evacuation ordered

Update at Santa Fe Reporter

From:   Concerned Citizens for Nuclear Safety ccns@nuclearactive.org
            Mon, Jun 27, 2011 at 3:53 PM

Our main concern is that the Las Conchas fire is about 3 1/2 miles from Area G, the dumpsite that has been in operation since the late 1950s/early 1960s.  There are 20,000 to 30,000 55-gallons drums of plutonium contaminated waste (containing solvents, chemicals and toxic materials) sitting in fabric tents above ground.  These drums are destined for WIPP.

We understand that LANL has been working since late last night to build a fire line in Water Canyon, between the fire and Area G.

Over the last 26 hours the fire has grown from 0 acres to about 45,000 acres – about the size of the Cerro Grande fire in 2000.

It has moved 12 miles in 24 hours, about two miles an hour.

------ Forwarded Message
From: Pat Leahan <patleahan@desertgate.com>
Date: Mon, 27 Jun 2011 14:17:13 -0600
To: Robert Anderson <citizen@comcast.net>
Subject: "Urgent - LA County NR - evacs - please distribute"

From: "Garcia, Pamela" <Pamela.Garcia@mail.house.gov>
Date: June 27, 2011 1:59:37 PM MDT
Subject: FW: Urgent - LA County NR - evacs - please distribute

Please share this information.

Los Alamos County
News Release
Public Information Office
133 Central Park Square
Los Alamos, NM  87544

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE!                                                          June 27, 2011   1:45 p.m.

Los Alamos, NM – Los Alamos County officials are reporting the fire is now threatening Los Alamos. They are ordering a mandatory evacuation which will begin and proceed in this order: Group 1: Western, Quemazon, Ponderosa; Group 2: North Community, Barranca Mesa, North Mesa; Group 3: East of Diamond and the remainder of the town site. White Rock is NOT being evacuated at this time. Residents in Los Alamos should NOT go to White Rock to stay in case it is later evacuated.

Residents are urged to prepare now to be ready to go when their Group is called using Reverse 911. The best sources of information about Group releases for the evacuation will continue to be through news outlets. The County is first evacuating those residents who are the closest to the immediate threat of fire. Residents should wait for the automated Reverse 911 phone call. Once called, proceed in an orderly fashion to police control points and follow any additional instructions to safely leave the County. National Guard and State Police will be assisting with the evacuation process.

Residents in Los Alamos in the Downtown, North Community, Quemazon, Eastern, and Western areas use either the Truck Route (East Jemez Rd) or Trinity Drive to NM502. Royal Crest residents would use the Truck Route to SR 4 to NM502. Residents on the mesas (North Mesa, Barranca Mesa) use the graded road in the bottom of Rendija Canyon, the same emergency route used during the Cerro Grande Fire in May 2000. The road has been graded today and the gate through San Ildefonso property to NM 502 is open. Take only your most essential belongings, including medication and pets. Large vehicles such as RVs should not attempt to use the road through Rendija Canyon due to the low water crossings in the road. The road is graded to accommodate passenger cars, trucks or SUVs, not oversized vehicles. Residents in White Rock should use SR 4 to NM 502 to evacuate if that becomes necessary.

The Big Rock Santa Claran Event Center is open as a shelter for those who are voluntarily evacuating with no accommodations. Residents who have friends and family in the area are asked to relocate to stay with them in order to keep shelter space available for those who most need it. The County is coordinating with regional resources to open more shelters. Those without transportation should call 505-661-RIDE (Atomic City Transit, the County’s transit system). They will start arranging busses to pick up those who need bus service.

Los Alamos County will continue to be on “essential services” only staffing on Tuesday, due to the continued need to address the emergency related to the wildfire.

Residents are asked to seek information about the size of the fire or other general fire updates on the USFS webpage rather than calling the County.  Links to public information about the Las Conchas fire can be found on the News page at www.losalamosnm.us <http://www.losalamosnm.us/> .

A Joint Information Center is operational for media inquiries about the fire. Media should call             505-820-1226      .


Saturday, May 14, 2011

NYTimes Article from which the Stewart Udall Quote comes

O'Neill quotes Stewart Udall, from this NYTimes oped.

There is nothing comparable in our history to the deceit and the lying that took place as a matter of official Government policy in order to protect this [the nuclear arms] industry. Nothing was going to stop them and they were willing to kill our own people.” 


Santa Fe Portrait; A Longtime Pillar of the Government Now Aids Those Hurt by Its Bombs

Published: June 09, 1993  NYTimes 

East of the Nevada Test Site, where the Government conducted atmospheric tests of atomic bombs, the town of Alamo, Nev., rises in the desert. In August 1978, at the urging of a cousin, Stewart L. Udall went to Alamo and listened to mothers tell of the dust and radiation from the blasts that settled over the town in the 1950's and of the children they had lost to leukemia.

"Until then, there were a lot of people in that country who suspected a link, but they kept it to themselves," said Mr. Udall, who once was Secretary of the Interior for Presidents John F. Kennedy and Lyndon B. Johnson. "They had been fed a steady diet of lies by the Government that there was no danger. That was my first trip to investigate, and I felt there was more to it, that it would be difficult and that we would be breaking new ground."

It also nearly broke the spirit of an elder statesman of the Southwest and the Democratic Party, a man who wears his hair in unruly silvery waves these days and is almost never seen in anything other than cotton work pants and white sneakers. On a bright spring afternoon in his new adobe home overlooking Santa Fe and the Jemez mountains, Mr. Udall says he is happier than he has been in years as he finishes what may be his greatest work of a life full of achievements. Apology and a Promise

Almost three years ago, the Government passed the Radiation Exposure Compensation Act, a law that was a both a formal apology and a promise to compensate thousands of Americans who were injured or killed by the development and testing of atomic bombs. Hundreds of those people turned to Mr. Udall for help in the late 1970's, and he agreed to represent them as a public interest lawyer. They are finally receiving recognition for their suffering from the Government, though at a pace he calls unnecessarily slow and cumbersome.

From a study decorated with the pictures of the Kennedy brothers, Robert Frost, William O. Douglas and other men of history who were his close friends, Mr. Udall is using his considerable stature and influence to change the system. He has appealed to the Clinton Administration to make the law as compassionate as it was intended to be. And he is beginning to get help from Congress
In early May, Representative George Miller, a Democrat of California and chairman of the House Natural Resources Committee, asked Attorney General Janet Reno for an accounting of the compensation program and ways it could be improved. Recently, two Democratic lawmakers from New Mexico, Senator Jeff Bingaman and Representative Bill Richardson, began looking into problems in the program at the Navajo reservation in Shiprock.

The compensation law, which Mr. Udall helped to write and push through Congress, came 12 years after he began to uncover and prove one of the terrible secrets of American democracy: in the name of safeguarding the nation from the Soviets, the United States had knowingly exposed millions of its own citizens to harmful levels of atomic radiation. Signs of Fatigue

The hours of research and the miles of travel are beginning to show in a walk that is stiffening, fatigue that creeps up on him at odd times of the day, and the anger that flares in his eyes when he describes the Government's behavior.

"There is nothing comparable in our history to the deceit and the lying that took place as a matter of official Government policy in order to protect this industry," said Mr. Udall. "Nothing was going to stop them and they were willing to kill our own people."

Mr. Udall developed the evidence for such statements in pursuing three lawsuits he filed filed against the Government. The suits began to undermine the prevailing view that the American nuclear arms industry was safe. The point was made even stronger after Congressional investigations by Senator John Glenn, Representative Mike Synar, and other lawmakers in the 1980's. In 1988 nuclear weapons plants in six states, the heart of the industry, were shut amid protests by citizens and questions about the industry's safety and management that were raised by the Government's own nuclear engineers.

It will be left to historians to decide whether the collapse of the nuclear weapons industry played a role in ending the cold war and in decisions to begin disarming the American atomic arsenal. But some experts contend that an important part of that story begins with Mr. Udall. Byproduct of Arms Race

"He got America to recognize that there was a tragic human face associated with the arms race," said Robert Alvarez, an investigator on Senator Glenn's Committee on Governmental Affairs and co-author of "Killing Our Own" (Dell, 1982) a history of the nation's experience with the atom. "Stewart forced the atomic weapons industry to begin to fall under democratic control. And when it did, it led to further revelations that unraveled the consensus that had allowed the Government to operate without anybody questioning them."

Stewart L. Udall was born in 1920 in St. Johns, Ariz., the oldest son of six children raised by Louise Udall and her husband, Levi, a Mormon and self-educated lawyer who ended his career as Chief Justice of the Arizona Supreme Court. Mr. Udall and his younger brother Morris, a future Congressman and 1976 Presidential candidate, followed in their father's footsteps, opening a law practice together in Tucson in 1949.

The older brother won the first of his three terms in Congress as a Democrat from Arizona in 1954. His seat was taken by Mo Udall in 1961, when he was named by President Kennedy to become Secretary of the Interior, a job he commanded as only one man before him had, Harold L. Ickes, who served during the Depression, and none since.

From 1961 to 1968, Mr. Udall wrote or helped to write four landmark conservation laws, among them the 1964 Wilderness Act, which permanently safeguards tens of millions of acres of forest from logging, mining, and road-building. He established four national parks, 56 wildlife refuges, 8 national seashores and lakeshores, 9 national recreations areas and 22 national historic sites. Cold War History

Yet Mr. Alvarez and other nuclear experts who have followed his career say Mr. Udall's greatest work may have come after he left Washington, when he challenged the Government's nuclear warriors.

When the last lawsuit was concluded, Mr. Udall moved to Santa Fe two years ago to live next-door to his son Tom, who was elected New Mexico's Attorney General. Each morning Mr. Udall awakens early, pads into his study, and reckons with the country's cold war experience and his role in it in a book he is finishing, his fourth.

"The atomic weapons race and the secrecy surrounding it crushed American democracy," Mr. Udall said in a interview. "It induced us to conduct Government according to lies. It distorted justice. It undermined American morality. Until the cold war, our country stood for something. Lincoln was the great exemplar. We stood for moral leadership in the world."

Until 1978, Mr. Udall said he had known little about the behavior of the officials inside the Atomic Energy Commission and its successor, the Department of Energy.

Then came the plea for help from his cousin in Alamo. Over the next decade, Mr. Udall, a team of other lawyers, and four of his six children investigated and litigated the three lawsuits asserting that Americans had been harmed by the Government's negligent management of the nuclear-arms industry.

The first suit was brought by thousands of men, women and children in the Southwest who said they had been harmed by radioactive fallout from the atmospheric testing of atomic bombs in the 1950's and early 1960's. The second was brought by families of Navajo men who had mined uranium for the Government and were disabled or killed by lung cancer caused by radiation in the mines. A third suit, still pending, was brought by workers at the Nevada Test Site. Power of Government
Ultimately, the first two lawsuits failed because the Federal Tort Claims Act of 1946 gives officials broad discretion to carry out programs, whether or not they cause injuries. When the Supreme Court declined to hear the cases in the late 1980's, Mr. Udall said he was crushed.
In the spring of 1988, Navajo leaders asked Mr. Udall to come to the reservation in northern Arizona to explain what happened. Mr. Udall said he could not face them. "They believed in me," he said slowly, the memory evident in the hardened corners of his mouth. "They believed in our system of justice. I had told them the courts would listen. It was almost as though I had lied about our system of justice. That if you were patient and persistent, there would be justice at the end. At that point I thought we had reached the end."

For months, Lee Udall said, her husband, normally a tower of energy and moral fire, moped around their house in Phoenix. Mr. Udall said he had been broken in spirit and in finances.

He even refused an appeal by a friend, former Representative Wayne Owens, Democrat of Utah, who called him in the summer of 1988 for help in writing a bill to compensate the victims. Mr. Udall told Mr. Owens he was too broke to pay for a plane ticket to Washington and too discouraged to be much help. "I thought it was another lost cause," Mr. Udall said.
But Mr. Owens, who lost the election for a Senate seat last year, persisted. In 1989, Mr. Udall made the first of a number of trips to Washington to write the legislation and lobby for its passage. He helped build the coalition of western Republicans in the Senate, led by Orrin G. Hatch of Utah, Pete G. Domenici of New Mexico, and Alan K. Simpson of Wyoming, who were needed to persuade President George Bush to sign the law on Oct. 15, 1990.

Justice Department officials, who administer the program, point out that by fighting for his clients Mr. Udall will receive legal fees provided by the compensation law.

Mr. Udall acknowledges that he, his family and several lawyers who helped with the lawsuits have received $570,000 in fees from 57 victorious clients and that they stand to gain $1 million or more in fees. But he noted that the payments come after 14 years of work, and he said he had spent at least $200,000 of his own money investigating and litigating the cases.

"If the pot gets sweet at the end that's fine," he said. "Whatever I get I will have earned. That is a fact. But that has not been my permanent concern. I have a personal commitment to my clients. You start a job. You finish it."

As for the compensation legislation, Mr. Udall says it is a statement that only the United States is capable of making. "It shows the country is resilient," he said. "It shows a willingness to admit mistakes. We still have the ability to let our children see our triumphs and how we betrayed our ideals."


Why does his son Tom not display some of this integrity and stop feeding "this steady diet of lies by the government"?

Monday, April 25, 2011

Kirtland AFB officials release Fiscal Year 2010 economic impact statement

On Sun, Apr 24, 2011 at 9:17 PM, Robert Anderson <citizen@comcast.net> wrote:

April 22, 2011  Release #11-15

Kirtland AFB officials release Fiscal Year 2010 economic impact statement

KIRTLAND AIR FORCE BASE, N.M. – In Fiscal Year 2010, from Oct. 1, 2009 through Sept. 30, 2010, Kirtland Air Force Base entities infused nearly $7.8 billion into the economy nationwide.

In the local “Economic Impact Region,” which includes all counties within 50 miles of the base, the 2010 impact amount was $4.3 billion. That figure includes $2.2 billion in payroll and more than $2 billion in job creation and expenditures.

Col. Robert L. Maness, commander of the 377th Air Base Wing, the host unit at Kirtland AFB, said the base’s connections with the people and businesses of New Mexico are essential to performing the assigned functions of national security.

“The business relationships between Kirtland Air Force Base and our community partners are key factors in the success of the many missions underway here. In addition to enhancing our ability to carry out the duties entrusted to us, these relationships have cascading benefits beyond the base’s boundaries, as the dollar amounts in the economic impact statement indicate,” he said.

Some highlights of the installation’s 2010 economic impact appear below:

·         Kirtland AFB is the largest employer in New Mexico, with more than 21,000 people working on base – estimated to be one of every 14 jobs in the state.

·         Small businesses were awarded $428 million in contracts.

·         Three major military construction projects totaling $30 million were completed or are in progress.

·         The Air Force Research laboratory invests $3 million a year in New Mexico to provide science, technology, engineering and mathematics education outreach to students ranging from fifth grade through graduate school.


This was my reply:

In his March 10, 2011 NYTimes oped Nobel Laurette Paul Krugman wrote:

Like anyone who writes regularly about what passes for economic and fiscal debate in American politics, I’ve developed a strong tolerance for nonsense. After all, if I got upset every time powerful people were illogical and/or dishonest, I’d spend every waking hour in a state of raging despair.
Yet there are still moments when I find myself saying, “They can’t really be that stupid,” or maybe, “They can’t really think the rest of us are that stupid.”

This is one of those moments, when faced with sufficient economic nonsense, I find myself responding. 

The major problem with this PR piece is not that the negative impacts have been excluded from measurement. It is what is being purported as being a "benefit/positive" is itself in fact a "cost/negative".

KAFB spins the money they TOOK from the community as an "infusion"  rather than as the "extraction" it actually is. Labor is an INPUT INTO the production process, not an OUTPUT FROM that process.  The $2.2 billion is a measure of what is LOST, not what is GAINED.

....of the $7.8 billion that KAFB extorted, they claim to have "invested" (returned) $3million, or about 1/25 of 1% to the schools; and much of that likely is not for teaching how to live better, but how to kill better.  So perhaps one hundredth of one per cent could be deducted from the $7.8 billion that former President Eishenhower would have labeled as theft.

That "contribution" pales in comparison to the contribution other criminals, such as Pepe Escobar,  returned to his Colombian community, without causing nearly as much devastation.

KAFB is just one of many (LANL, SNL,CAFB, WSMR) military installations in New Mexico, one that by KAFB's own admission consumes one of every fourteen jobs.   Could they have someone explain to the community whether they think that if ALL US citizens were employed at high paying military functions how they envision citizens are to live? Do they envision the U.S. being able to extort enough product from other nations in the manner former Executive Director of the Joint Economic Committee James Galbraith describes in his book "The Predator State" ?

Perhaps those employed by KAFB should be forced to sharecrop, to be paid out of the proceeds of what they "produce"?   A diet of bombs might reveal the dishonesty of such an accounting system.

 Every gun that is made, every warship launched, every rocket fired signifies, in the final sense, a theft from those who hunger and are not fed, those who are cold and are not clothed. ---Dwight D Eisenhower, 1953

“It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends upon his not understanding it”  -- Upton Sinclair

                   “The efforts of men are utilized in two different ways: they are directed to  
                     the production or transformation of economic goods, or else to the 
                    appropriation of goods produced by others” –Vilfredo Pareto

                   "What gets us into trouble is not what we don't know. It's what we know for 
                    sure that just ain't so"     ---   Mark Twain


Sunday, March 27, 2011

Pakistan gives CIA license to kill Pakistani – asserts ex-CIA Undercover Operative

Check out the interview of Albuquerque's Bob Anderson from Stop the War Machine

Pakistan gives CIA license to kill Pakistani – asserts ex-CIA Undercover Operative