Quote of the day–Bill Wilson

The tepid response by Missouri to this episode is frankly appalling. If no record of who produced and approved this trash exists, then the entire leadership who was working at MIAC at the time of this report being drafted and issued should be fired and barred from future law enforcement service.

Bill Wilson
President Americans for Limited Government
October 15, 2009
ALG Blasts Missouri Information Analysis Center For Retaining No Records of Erroneous MIAC “Modern Militia Movement” Report
[H/T to Dave Hardy.

Remember the "Modern Militia Movement" document that came out last February? Well via a Freedom of Information act request they say the don't know who wrote it or approved it. They don't even have anything but a draft version of that document.

Typical. I have FOIA requests to Pacific Northwest National Labs that were supposed to be answered within 20 days and it's been, what, 2+ years and they haven't done anything but acknowledge receipt of the requests. Then there was the one request I involved my congressman, a lawyer, and the DOE on and documents that I originally wrote which were completely open suddenly became For Official Use Only. But in order to tell my lawyer that they revealed material that was classified as Secret -- without telling him it was classified.--Joe]

I know those guys!

Phil Pulver has been involved in a lawsuit against Battelle since 1995. Phil contacted me when I was doing battle against Battelle/PNNL and we talk on the phone every once in a while. Here are some of the more interesting points:

Via a DOE grant for $42,128 some software was developed and Pulver given exclusive rights to it. Battelle then delivered a non-working version to Pulver (Battelle disputes this point). Battelle then continued to work on it and used the software for a project for Homeland Security. They then applied for a patent on software that looks nearly identical and claim it was something completely unrelated to Pulvers.

Pulver has spent ~$300K on legal fees. The DOE pays Battelle’s legal fees but Battelle gets to call the shots in the legal case. So far Battelle has spent nearly $750K in taxpayer money.

Your government in action.

See Pulvers website for more details than you probably want to know.

The other guy? John Trumbo is the reporter at the paper who wrote the article. I had lunch with him once and he wrote an couple articles on my battle with Battelle as well. I referred Pulver to Trumbo.

Quote of the day–PCV-Scott

One of the first things I learned as a prosecutor is that ethics required me to seek justice, not merely convictions. The actions of the prosecutor in this case plainly violate that rule. It is because of unethical violations like this that I finally resigned from the bar in disgust.


PCV-Scott
May 13, 2009
US prosecutor admits error, hopes for 2d chance
[The prosecutor admitted the "error" of withholding evidence from the defense attorney but the judge says the entire Boston office has a "dismal history of intentional and inadvertent violations". In my fight with PNNL my ignorant belief that lawyers would behave ethically was quickly smashed. Even my lawyer, with over a decade of law practice, was surprised at some of the stuff they did. In the Weaver/Harris case the prosecutors withheld and tampered with evidence and the jurors believed they destroyed evidence. This is in addition to telling Weaver the court date was a month later than it was actually scheduled. But they were caught at least twice in that case and the defendants were found not guilty. Who knows how many times they got away with it in that case and others? We know that a tremendous amount of evidence was deliberately destroyed in the Waco case. David has more comments on the Boston case and other examples of prosecutor misconduct. And I, like him, will now shut up before I say something I would regret.--Joe]

Homework assignment

Via Ry. Post Zumbo, post Cooper. How many more are there out there than need to get their asses kicked for supporting Obama in this election? Gentlemen, we can out them. We have the technology. We have the capability to spend our dollars only with those gun companies that support our specific, enumerated, individual right to keep and bear arms.


So, lets do it.

Death wish or just incredibly stupid?

My web site about my “adventure” with Battelle’s Pacific Northwest National Laboratory recently yielded contact with another victim of theirs.

I often thought it odd they would treat me so poorly with my expertise with explosives and firearms. Why not ease me out rather than treat me crap and not even allow me to defend myself against the allegations? Internal email and testimony during my lawsuit after I was fired revealed there were people on the inside that were quite concerned about that too. They had one or more meetings on how they might deal with “getting sniped at from 800 yards away”.

My latest contact who joined the club of being fired unjustly with any opportunity to defend themselves against allegations of wrongdoing by Battelle has expertise with botulinum toxin, ricin, Yersinia pestis, as well as all of the major chemical warfare agents, such as mustard gas, Sarin and VX.

Financial restrictions by the bigots

Of course you knew PayPal won’t handle transactions for “certain firearms, firearm parts or accessories, ammunition, weapons or knives“, right?

You probably knew Google has issues with guns too.

Here is a story I don’t think I have told here before:

Years ago, when I first created Modern Ballistics, I tried to get a merchant account for processing credit cards. I had one a few years earlier when was selling software to software developers instead of gun owners and I figured it wouldn’t be a problem. I sent in my application and to my surprise they turned me down. At first they wouldn’t tell me why. But after much calling and pestering them they finally told me it was because of my product. I carefully read through all their fine print and couldn’t find where there was anything wrong with my product according to their published rules. I told them I didn’t understand, what is wrong with my product? The most I could get out of them was that I could submit my application again if I wanted but it probably wouldn’t make any difference.

Now via Sebastian and NSSF I find out:

Citi Merchant Services and First Data Corp. are refusing to process any credit card transactions between federally licensed firearms retailers, distributors and manufacturers — a move which will severely limit available inventory of firearms and ammunition to military, law enforcement and law-abiding Americans.

The first company to be affected by this decision appears to be firearms distributor CDNN Sports Inc.

“We were contacted recently by First Data/Citi Merchant Services by a June Rivera-Mantilla stating that we were terminated and funds were being seized for selling firearms in a non-face-to-face transaction,” said Charlie Crawford, president of CDNN Sports Inc. “Although perfectly legal, we were also informed that no transactions would be processed in the future, even for non-firearms. I find this very frightening.”

To voice your concern to Citi Merchant Services and First Data Corp., please contact June Rivera-Mantilla at 631-683-7734 or her supervisor Robert Tenenbaum at 631-683-6570.

Read the letter, they claim a violation of the law but yet apparently don’t bother to turn them into law enforcement. Just like some experiences I have had (above and with PNNL) if they want to get rid of you they will just make stuff up that is at best half true. They don’t need or want to know the truth, they just want to get rid of you. It’s very tough to win against people like that. Just like literacy tests for voting, when tested none of the blacks could read the daily newspaper, hence they failed the state approved test. Never mind the newspaper given to them was printed in Chinese. Technically they can get away with it but it’s still not right.

If they were refusing to do business with people with a certain skin color, sexual orientation, or religion this would be on the front page of all the newspapers. But it isn’t. And its because we are just “gun-ni**ers” and it is socially acceptable to the elites to treat us like this.

Drawing a line in the sand

I tried to post this as a comment to Kevin’s post but it was automatically rejected with the explanation of having too many links. No matter, I was going to make a post out of it anyway. I’ll provide a link to here from Kevin’s comment section. I won’t object to comments here but please consider whether the comment really should go on Kevin’s blog.


I ask you…what would you say of the manufacturers of crematoria, the producers of Zyklon-B, and the merchants of barbed wire who actively sought, and jealously protected, their government contracts with the 3rd Reich?

To a lesser degree businesses that sell to many government entities in the U.S. today are no different. But Barrett rifles and others have refused to do business with certain government organizations because of the laws that infringe on the civil rights of the people.

What I would say to those businesses is that I understand their reluctance to refuse to participate (in part, I was fired from my job because of this). I also read Hitler’s Willing Executioners and understand how an entire culture can go “sour” and make it difficult for people/business to stand up to the thugs in power. How many individuals/businesses refuse to sell products that aid in the war on some drugs? Or bite their tongue even though they know the war on people that smoke cigarettes is morally wrong but personally convenient? It’s very difficult to draw a line and say, “This is the limit, I will tolerate this, and beyond that I will cease to be a part of it or even actively fight it.” And it is very, very difficult to find and adhere to the line drawn beyond which you will disobey the law and endure the threat of government violence against you and/or your family. It is because of this that I wrote my essay on Civil Disobedience (see also this effort of mine).

I wrote my essay before I became a NRA certified firearms instructor in personal protection and was only a little surprised we were told to teach the importance of setting a limit and knowing what action you will take if that limit is crossed. This “drawing of the line in the sand” is very, very important. One instructor put it to me this way, “It’s far more important to know when to draw than how fast you can draw.” This lesson is applicable to far more things that most people know. Understanding this could eliminate all the “frog in the boiling water” scenarios. Governments grow out of control because people haven’t set a limit and said, “If these conditions are violated then the system has crashed and it’s time to press the reset button.” In a somewhat obscure way our Bill of Rights is such a line in the sand but the critical second portion of the rule wasn’t put in place. That second portion is what action you will take if that limit is crossed. If I could go back in time to the time of the writing of our constitution and influence it’s development I would insist provisions for this second portion was just as critical as enumerated powers and guarantees of rights.

This lesson is something I believe should be taught in our schools. And it’s not just because of the personal protection and “out of control government” issues. “Knowing when to hold them and when to fold them” is another way to say the same thing and perhaps enables people to see far more applications of this vital tool. The more widespread the application of this lesson the more likely it will be applied in the more difficult situations.

Draw your lines in the sand early when you have the time and a cool head. Your life or even the lives of millions may depend on it.

I wonder what Battelle Columbus is up to

The jerks at PNNL I used to work for report back to Battelle headquarters in Columbus Ohio. It appears I just had a visit from them:

Domain Name   rr.com ? (Commercial)
IP Address   65.24.154.# (Road Runner)
ISP   Road Runner
Location  
Continent  :  North America
Country  :  United States  (Facts)
State  :  Ohio
City  :  Columbus
Lat/Long  :  39.9968, -82.9882 (Map)
Distance  :  1,755 miles
Language   English (U.S.)
en-us
Operating System   Microsoft WinNT
Browser   Internet Explorer 7.0
Mozilla/4.0 (compatible; MSIE 7.0; Windows NT 6.0; WOW64; SLCC1; .NET CLR 2.0.50727; .NET CLR 3.0.04506; Media Center PC 5.0)
Javascript   version 1.3
Monitor  

Resolution  :  1280 x 800
Color Depth  :  16 bits

Time of Visit   Sep 22 2007 12:53:04 pm
Last Page View   Sep 22 2007 1:10:13 pm
Visit Length   17 minutes 9 seconds
Page Views   9
Referring URL http://search.live.c…uffman.org&FORM=USNO
Search Engine search.live.com
Search Words blog.joehuffman.org
Visit Entry Page   http://cc.msnscache….lang=en-US&FORM=CVRE
Visit Exit Page   http://blog.joehuffm…w,category,PNNL.aspx
Out Click   a story which was published today
http://www.tri-cityh…58717p-9075291c.html
Time Zone   UTC-5:00
Visitor’s Time   Sep 22 2007 3:53:04 pm
Visit Number   193,489

Quote of the day–Ronald Reagan

The best minds are not in government. If any were, business would steal them away.

Ronald Reagan
[The difference I saw between working on government contracts as a "Senior Research Scientist II" at PNNL (I was once told I would be considered a "god" if I had a PhD) and working at Microsoft as a Software Development Engineer was like teaching high school Freshman versus earning my MSEE. But you don't need to be an engineer to see the truth of Reagan's statement. Just look an some of our government agencies, like the TSA. This is just part of the reason why government should be limited; they are too stupid to spend our money wisely.--Joe]

Interesting–just rambling mostly

Heather and Jon were married twenty six years and four days after Barb and I. Heather is the origin of the word “dooced“. She now blogs full time successfully enough to support her husband and child.

This week I received my first performance review after going to work full time at Microsoft last year. I was shocked to discover the size of the bonuses and stock grants (James called me up immediately after his review and reported similar shock, “That is a lot of money!”). Even counting the lost pay after being dooced myself (I still need to finish writing up the full story–lots of interesting details about what really happened) in about four or five years I will be financially better off that I would have been had I stayed at the lab. I would rather do the work (for the most part) I was doing at the lab but financially I can’t complain.

More OUO material

I got in trouble with PNNL because someone thought my daughter might have had access to “Official Use Only” material. The material in question was marked OUO but was never OUO. We managed to get evidence of that after filing a motion to compel with the judge but legally it just didn’t matter. Someone saw the markings, didn’t bother to check to see if the markings were valid, see if Xenia actually had access, and acted accordingly–I lost my job. Here is another document marked OUO: I Found Ted Kennedy’s Safe! (nice demonstration video of .50 BMG capabilities). I reported the OUO material from the TSA about three weeks ago.

What’s interesting to me is that you find quite a lot of stuff if you do a search for “Official Use Only” on Live Search (142,637 items) or Google (about 815,000 items). Most of that is not actually government OUO material but some of it is and was put on websites and indexed when it really shouldn’t have been. And then there is the stuff marked as OUO for political purposes. And even some of the material marked and protected as OUO is still available under the Freedom of Information Act:

The For Official Use Only designation is also used by CIA and a number of other federal agencies, but each agency is responsible for determining how it shall be used. The categories of protected information may be quite different from one agency to another, although in every case the protected information must be covered by one of the nine categories of information that are exempt from public release under FOIA.

Some agencies use different terminology for the same types of information. For example, Department of Energy uses Official Use Only (OUO). Department of State uses Sensitive But Unclassified (SBU), formerly called Limited Official Use (LOU). The Drug Enforcement Administration uses DEA Sensitive. In all cases the designations refer to unclassified, sensitive information that is or may be exempt from public release under the Freedom of Information Act.

The fact that information is marked FOUO does not mean it is automatically exempt from public release under FOIA. If a request for the information is received, it must be reviewed to see if it meets the FOIA dual test: (1) It fits into one of the nine FOIA exemption categories, and (2) There is a legitimate government purpose served by withholding the information. On the other hand, the absence of the FOUO or other marking does not automatically mean the information must be released in response to a FOIA request.

Part of why I’m doing all the FOIA requests is to demonstrate that the material Xenia supposedly had access to, which was a major component the supposed reason I was fired, is in fact available to anyone that asks for it. This doesn’t matter in a legal sense in terms of a wrongful termination lawsuit–they could make up a rule that says people can’t trim their nose hair or some such thing and fire people that do. Of course this is all rather embarrassing to PNNL and they are just ignoring the FOIA requests–because they think the law doesn’t apply to them. The person that said “See this badge?  This means the law doesn’t apply to us.” was Newton Brown, who instigated the investigation against me.

More details on the entire story of what happened to me at PNNL including how they let unauthorized people, perhaps including foreign nationals, have access to hundreds of computers with OUO material on them, some other time–I want to reload some ammo this morning before I have lunch with Barb.

A much needed change

Some of my FOIA requests to PNNL are over two years old. And even after I won an appeal from an early denial they still are refusing to send me the data. We’ll, not exactly refusing. Every week when my lawyer calls them up asks what the status is they say, “I’ll have to get back to you on that.” And, of course, they don’t. Repeat the next week.

In another case, in response to a FOIA request, they deleted a bunch of material (I found out via a late night anonymous phone call) and told me they did a “thorough search” and no such documents were found. My lawyer reworded the request and resubmitted it. They ignored both it and my congress critter’s repeated requests to comply.

Remember the batch of requests I made almost seven weeks ago? They had 20 business days to respond and I’ve not received even a “go pound sand” response. Like I have said before they think the law doesn’t apply to them.

This may make it easier for me to change their tune:

The Senate on Friday unanimously approved a measure that would extend the open-government requirements of the Freedom of Information Act to private contractors and increase penalties for federal agencies that do not comply.

[...]

Sens. Patrick Leahy and John Cornyn, R-Texas, sponsored the legislation to speed agency responses and compel the government to more accurately track pending requests. The legislation was blocked from a floor vote for months because Sen. Jon Kyl, R-Ariz., and the Justice Department objected to several provisions.

One would have allowed requesters who file lawsuits to recover their attorney fees. Under the compromise, a requester would be able to recover the fees unless the claim is found to be “wholly insubstantial.”

[...]

Other provisions would extend FOIA compliance to private contractors who keep records on government work and would protect fee waivers for “legitimate journalists, regardless of institutional association.” That means waivers would apply to bloggers and others based on the Internet.

I’m in the news

I sent an email to the reporter I had talked to a few times about my difficulties with PNNL with a link to my post saying I was dropping my lawsuit against the lab. He wrote a story which was published today.

Even with that post as a written reference the paper still managed to get a few things wrong.

  • The paper says, “Rather than argue about excessive personal use of lab computers, he chose to back down.” Apparently the reporter doesn’t understand that if the lab did an investigation that concluded I had 13 gazillion terabytes of child porn on my work computer (they did not, but they did claim this picture was “adult content”) and my computer was actually squeaky clean I would not have a case unless the motive for the false report was for something like me being of the wrong race, religion, etc. They could be as incompetent as a retarded monkey taking a calculus exam (pretty good analogy to what actually happened) and I would not have had a case. No law or court demands they be competent in their investigation.
  • The paper says, “A former cyber security analyst…”. My actual title was “Senior Research Scientist II”.

Oh well. What do you expect?

A teaser on the PNNL story

I’ve been sending email around to people I knew wouldn’t really wait to know what happened with PNNL yesterday.  Here’s the basics of what happened. I’ll do the complete time-line with documentation later…

They finally gave us enough evidence that we could reasonably conclude they were incompetent rather than bigoted. It took a motion to compel before they finally gave us some of the information and then doing depositions on some people. I don’t understand why they didn’t turn this information over when we asked for it in our first interrogatory. It would have saved everyone a lot of time and money.

Some of the most basic unchallenged facts I had believed were false. I was told by Gina, on two different occasions, that both she and no one she knew on our team knew anything at all about the investigation. If this was true then the truth or falsity of my claim that I had not posted sensitive information was irrelevant to the investigators and the decision makers. It turns out that Newton, Wayne, and she had actually started the investigation. That Gina and Wayne knew anything at all about it was news to me yesterday. I didn’t know Newton had anything to do with it until my deposition in April of 2007. They should have told us all of this in their first response as we requested. I don’t know why they hid it and required us to go to the judge with a motion to compel to turn it over. Legally they had absolutely nothing to fear from releasing the information–it invalidated my theory of the case.

My lawyer said I could possibly still win the case–but for the wrong reason. Witnesses, Newton in particular, were extremely evasive (for example, refusing to agree, even in principle, to answer yes or no questions with a yes or no rather than a nod of the head and always quibbling about words such as “that depends on what your definition of ‘complain’ is”). Newton and others even gave testimony under oath that I had hard proof was false–all stuff that would look bad to the judge and jury. And Newton even had his own personal file he kept on me which sounds extremely suspicious. The court recorder thought we were joking we told her to pack up because we were done. She thought things were going very well for us. But the bottom line is that all the strange stuff, once we had the truthful critical information, didn’t matter in the big picture so I dropped it. Even if I would have pushed on, which my lawyer almost for certain would not have done had I be so inclined, and won simply because Newton appeared to be hiding information on nearly every response it would have been a hollow victory. Battelle/PNNL would have been screwed because Newton doesn’t know how or perhaps is even unable to be candid and believable. I believed him on the parts that were most important to me because I knew Newton was paranoid even when there wasn’t anything to be paranoid about. And the critical information he provided fit in with other information that that until that point didn’t make any sense.

We are pretty sure this is what happened:

Newton thought maybe I had posted classified (national security type) information on my blog. He talked to Wayne about it–what do we say to Joe? How do we approach him about this? But if it was classified they couldn’t just handle it in private–it would have to be reported. They asked Greg about it. He didn’t know so they went to Chris. Chris, Wayne and Newton debated it and decided just to be safe they should report it and the investigation expanded. It turned out it was not classified, as I knew–but they never asked me. Newton and Wayne were essentially out of the picture now. The bigger investigation which, only initially required Gina’s input, turned up things that looked suspicious and everyone assumed the worst and the process continued to snowball. Finally they fired me without ever asking me except in the most vague terms to which I responded in a somewhat defiant manner. They didn’t even ask people that would have known the truth about the suspicious things they found. They just assumed, perhaps willfully, if it looked bad it was bad. Just three examples:

  1. I was accused of “excessive personal Internet use” because I averaged about 2600 firewall transactions a month to things they believed were not work related – no one bothered to compare it to what other people did. It turned out company average was about 8000 non-work related transactions per month.
  2. They assumed anything gun or explosives related web browsing was not work—which was false. I was bringing my expertise from my hobbies to my work and the investigators didn’t know this.
  3. They found a complete copy of my website, JoeHuffman.org, on the government laptop computer and assumed I was hosting the site from there. Wrong and it doesn’t even make sense–the website would go down when I was traveling with the laptop if that were the case. What really happened was I hosted, at the request of Wayne, a bunch of PNNL project material on my own personal website, JoeHuffman.org for a few days when some material need to go on-line on such short notice that we didn’t have time to go through the usual paperwork to get it on the corporate site. I integrated the PNNL material with my website on the government laptop computer to make sure the cascading style sheets didn’t interfere with each other (I didn’t really understand CSS very well and needed to make sure things were working right together). I had lots of free disk space on the laptop and didn’t bother to delete it afterward.

These and lots of other cascading failures occurred during their investigation process and were completely out of my control and knowledge until the lawsuit and some the information only showed up yesterday. I was “walking on the fence” with my blogging and knew it. They couldn’t quite figure out if I had crossed over or not and Bryan McMillan, my supervisor, “built a new fence” and told me not to cross over that one… so I started “walking on his new fence” with my blogging instead of being submissive. That almost for certain pissed him and others off. That doesn’t really make sense to me with my world view. When I would tell one of our kids to clean their room and when they announced it was clean and I went to inspect found the room clean but the hallway three feet deep in their dirty clothes I couldn’t hold back my smirk–and I would require they help me put their dirty clothes in the laundry room. Then the next time I told them to clean their room I would make sure the requirement included getting all the dirty clothes all the way to the laundry room. I would be pleased that I had such a clever child, but then I’m not normal…

McMillan, Hevland, and others may have in fact “walked on the fence” in terms of Battelle policy during the termination procedure but unless that was due to an actionable item such as a race, gender, age, etc. and possibly gun ownership issue of some sort it just doesn’t matter in a legal sense. They could get away with it.

In regards to all the evidence from my web logs–such as indications they weren’t looking for information I blogged about work but instead about my political activism and that I was a firearms instructor–we explored that. All indications appear the investigation started for other reasons, invalid (some other day with the data to back it up–Newton was “walking a fence” in his testimony) but not legally actionable. The people that may have had a bias against my activism and gun activities apparently didn’t pass that bias on to the decision makers.

PNNL screwed up by not doing a good investigation and I got screwed, in part because I was in essence mocking them, but them being incompetent investigators isn’t actionable in a legal sense so I dropped the case.

Another way to look at it that is probably fair was this statement by someone familiar with nearly all the details but wishes to remain anonymous, “Joe, I see why they fired you now. You are so in control you are out of control. Until people get to know you scare them. They thought you were a loose cannon and were a risk.”

It took me a lot of time to understand what “You are so in control you are out of control” really meant. It means I parsed the rules very carefully. It was all very clear to me–simplifying some, there were four types of information, Classified, Official Use Only, Business Sensitive, and everything else which was Open. The first three were carefully defined which made Open well defined. Open stuff is subject to Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests–which means anyone can get access if they ask for it. I was very much in control of what I said and chose my words carefully. But I said things in ways that made them more “interesting” than Battelle/PNNL was comfortable with. I was in control but appeared out of control.

There was, in essence, an unstated policy that they did not wish to honor FOIA. FOIA was a problem for them because it was so much easier to work on things that were in the open that they, and their customers preferred that operating environment. But even though it was technically open they preferred it remain “in the dark”. I honored the spirit of that but unless it were truly “not Open” I didn’t keep it as in the dark as “not Open” material were required to be kept. I think this pissed them off too–I was “Walking the Fence” again by not keeping FOIA-able material as dark as OUO material.

As I said here when I first found out about the investigation, my Push the Envelope Policy has it’s hazards.

As I talked to people about the results from yesterday I had one person tell me they couldn’t be like me but they were glad there were people like me out there. Extremists are usually right because they care about the issue and understand it. The moderates don’t care because they don’t know the issue. And if you are going to push the envelope you have to accept the risk and know that sometimes you are going to have to pay a price. You paid a heavy price. I hope it was worth it for you. I wouldn’t have been willing to pay that price.”

I don’t know the answer…I’m still thinking on it.

Quote of the day–James Huffman-Scott

So the quote about never attribute to malice what can adequately be explained by stupidity is appropriate here.

James Huffman-Scott
July 18, 2007
[This was after I told him I had dropped the lawsuit against PNNL and why I had dropped it. I'll write up a report on it this weekend. I've been running on four and five hours sleep for the last week preparing for the depositions that were to be today, tomorrow and the next. We did three of the four depositions scheduled and we had enough answers we could put the rest of the puzzle together on our own. I need to sleep tonight and the rest of the week I need to get a bunch of things done I felt guilty leaving undone at work. The basics are that what James said above overstates things just a little bit but its close enough. I got screwed but it wasn't for any reason that is actionable. There are still unanswered questions but even if they were answered in the most favorable manner possible to me it just wouldn't matter from a legal standpoint.--Joe]

Quote of the day–Machiavelli

Never do your enemy a minor injury.

Machiavelli
[At least it is attributed by some to be Machiavelli. I haven't been able to verify it. I like it regardless of who proper credit belongs to. Especially today since I am preparing for the depositions of my enemies, the felons, at PNNL. They did me a relatively minor injury over two years ago. My intentions for them are more than a minor injury. By this time next week they will be painfully aware of how much "injury" I am capable of delivering.--Joe]

Slime-balls

If you read far enough into Schneier’s essay I quoted yesterday you would have found this:

Subjects were divided into two groups. One group was given the choice of these two alternatives:

  • Alternative A: A sure gain of $500.
  • Alternative B: A 50% chance of gaining $1,000.

The other group was given the choice of:

  • Alternative C: A sure loss of $500.
  • Alternative D: A 50% chance of losing $1,000.

These two trade-offs aren’t the same, but they’re very similar. And traditional economics predicts that the difference doesn’t make a difference.

But experimental results contradict this. When faced with a gain, most people (84%) chose Alternative A (the sure gain) of $500 over Alternative B (the risky gain). But when faced with a loss, most people (70%) chose Alternative D (the risky loss) over Alternative C (the sure loss).

Interesting. But even before I read the results I felt myself drawn to alternatives A and D even though I knew it was illogical. And today I got real world confirmation of this phenomena in a very similar “test” of the felons at Battelle/PNNL when I got a look at their response to our second interrogatory. They had a choice. They could answer our questions which almost for certain would result in their losing the case and perhaps ultimately leading to felony convictions or they could refuse to answer the question and risk discovery abuse as well as losing the case and risking the felony convictions. But by refusing answer the questions they have a chance of escaping entirely. I don’t think they will escape and actually I’m pleased they made the choice they did. It increases the total penalties that I may be able to inflict upon them and removes all guilt I might have for making things difficult on the innocents at the lab. But I have to hand it to them, they have a lot of chutzpah.

One of the requests we made was for an email the proves one of the projects I briefly mentioned on my blog only had a very small portion (which I did not mention) of data that was restricted. The rest of the project was completely open and this email said it was acceptable that I publish papers on it as well as file for a patent and license the technology to a university. This blog posting of mine was used as evidence against me when they were discussing my possible termination. The email would have proved there was nothing wrong with me posting that information on my blog. In response to our request for that email they responded with:

Object: This request is beyond the scope of permissible discovery and not calculated to lead to the discovery of admissible evidence.

Another request of ours was “Please produce a copy of the email containing a link to the web page http://www.joehuffman.org/Freedom/ScreeningFails.htm which was clicked on by Una Carriera on Friday May 6, 2005 at 18:34:07 GMT.” We believe this email (and others we requested) would show they were interested in my gun rights activism.

Their response:

Object: This request is beyond the scope of permissible discovery and not calculated to lead to the discovery of admissible evidence. Furthermore, this request requests information that is unduly burdensome to produce.

This type of answer was a favorite of theirs and they used it for almost every response. They refused to give us “comparators” for how they did or did not discipline others that had “adult content” on their computers or people who let non employees use a company laptop (the one thing I did do wrong) for a few hours.

Basically I only obtained two new pieces of evidence out of 16 new interrogatory questions and 12 new requests for production. Those bits of information were SPEEDY was Marty Peterson and PUCK (the main investigator of the websites) was Cullen Tollbom.

I felt no qualms whatsoever when I clicked the button that yielded this:

And I didn’t feel any qualms when I did that repeatedly. I was hoping to avoid causing certain innocent people to do extra work. But they have had over two years to find new jobs or push out the felons from the inside. I now regard them as part of the problem. This quote comes to mind:

The only thing needed for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing.

Edmond Burke

I’m doing something. The people inside the lab could be doing something too but to the best of my knowledge they have not and are not. You can do something as well. Make a donation to my legal fund by clicking on the button near the top of this page.

Limiting IED production

Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs) are a huge issue for our forces in the sandbox. Because I have some experience in making improvised explosives this was one of the areas where I was trying to contribute when I worked at PNNL. Unfortunately that didn’t work out and I was involuntarily sidelined in that effort. Here is some tantalizing information on how the battle against IEDs is going:

There may be an unlimited supply of explosives in Iraq, but there is not an unlimited supply of people who know how to wire the detonators. In 2004, CIA operatives in Iraq believed they had identified the signatures of 11 different bomb-makers. They proposed a diabolical – but potentially effective – sabotage program that would have flooded Iraq with booby-trapped detonators designed to explode in the bomb-makers’ hands. But the CIA’s general counsel’s office said no. The lawyers claimed the agency lacked authority for such an operation, one source recalled.

Aside from the aneurysm inducing restriction imposed by the lawyers this is very interesting information. There are a very limited number of people in the Islamic extremist community with the technical skills to connect a remote garage door opener, walkie-talkie, or cell phone ringer, to the two wires of a blasting cap. This is an incredibly foreign concept to me. On the farm I was working with explosives when I was 10 years old and making electronic projects (and yes, some of them used vacuum tubes which means my son will claim it was in prehistoric times) by the time I was 12 or so. I don’t remember how much before that I was doing simple things with electric circuits — which is all the expertise you need to connect detonators.

I expect this is some sort of cultural difference. They think entirely different than we do, some say it may be more different that we can think. And apparently the reverse is true as well. Something that I could do as a child before my voice changed is a rare skill in their culture. So if we can’t remove those rare individuals from their society with sabotaged detonators how else can we take advantage of their lack of people with technical skills above that of a 12 year-old?

What timing!

Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) is managed by Battelle. It was these people that wrongfully, and feloniously, terminated my employment there just over two years ago. Apparently they had an issue with me exercising my First Amendment rights in advocating for the right to keep and bear arms. I am now in the middle of a lawsuit against these bigots. Increasing their vulnerability is Battelle’s contract to manage the lab is about to expire:

The future for about one-tenth of the Department of Energy lab is in limbo as the federal government looks for a way to call for bids on operating the lab.

At issue are $65 million to $80 million in private contract work out of PNNL’s overall annual $750 million budget. $52 million to $60 million of that private work would be lost if the Department of Energy decides not to allow private work under a new lab operations contract. The rest could be converted to government research projects.

Battelle spokesman Greg Koller said “significant job losses at PNNL, probably in the 300 to 400 range” are possible if the private work is not somehow preserved in DOE’s call for competitive bids.

Battelle has operated the lab under contract with DOE for 42 years. But DOE officials announced in January 2006 that there would be a competitive bid for running the lab after Battelle’s current contract expires at the end of September.

That they have a problem with people exercising their constitutionally guaranteed rights and see fit to keep felons on their payroll might be a point of interest for certain people as a new contract is being considered.

PNNL layoffs

Not because they committed criminal acts but simply because the lab didn’t have enough work for them

Nearly 60 employees at the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory have left their jobs in recent months mainly because of the “ebb and flow” of federal funding.

About 40 of the employees received involuntary layoff notices, said Greg Koller, spokesman for the lab run by Battelle for the Department of Energy.

I haven’t checked with my sources but almost for certain it didn’t include the people that should be facing felony charges. That will have to come later after I do some more work on the problem.