On 11 October 2000, I sent the following e-mail to Secretary of Energy Bill Richardson and copied it to key DOE officials and members of Congress.
X-Mozilla-Status: 0001 X-Mozilla-Status2: 00000000 Message-ID: <39E5A923.C0C3EAE5@antipolygraph.org> Date: Thu, 12 Oct 2000 14:05:58 +0200 From: "George W. Maschke"
Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Organization: AntiPolygraph.org X-Mailer: Mozilla 4.51 (Macintosh; U; PPC) X-Accept-Language: en MIME-Version: 1.0 To: Secretary of Energy Bill Richardson CC: "T.J. Glauthier - Deputy Secretary of Energy" , "Ernest J. Moniz - Under Secretary of Energy" , "John A. Gordon - Director - National Nuclear Security Agency" , "Catherine D. Eberwein - Chief of Counterintelligence - National Nuclear Security Administration" , "Eugene E. Habiger - Director of Emergency and Security Operations" , "Edward J. Curran - Director - DOE Counterintelligence" , "David M. Renzelman - Chief - DOE Polygraph Program" , Jeremy Wu - DOE Ombudsman , John Browne - Director - Los Alamos National Laboratory , "C. Paul Robinson - Director - Sandia National Laboratories" , "C. Bruce Tarter - Director - Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory" , "Sen. Richard Shelby - Chairman - Senate Select Committee on Intelligence" , "Sen. Richard Bryan - Ranking Member - Senate Select Committee on Intelligence" , "Sen. John Warner - Chairman - Senate Committee on Armed Services" , "Sen. Carl Levin - Ranking Member - Senate Committee on Armed Services" , "Sen. Jeff Bingaman" , "Sen. Diane Feinstein" , "Sen. Barbara Boxer" , "Rep. Porter Goss - Chairman - House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence" , "Rep. Norm Dicks - Ranking Member - House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence" , "Rep. Ike Skelton - Ranking Member - House Armed Services Committee Rep. Christopher Cox - Chairman - House Select Committee on Technology Transfer to the People's Republic of China" , "Rep. Tom Udall" , "Rep. Heather Wilson" , "Rep. Ellen Tauscher" Subject: Polygraph Screening and the Lie Behind the Lie Detector Content-Type: text/plain; charset=us-ascii Content-Transfer-Encoding: 7bit Dear Secretary Richardson: What is the Department of Energy's policy regarding those employees and contractors who, because of their understanding of "the lie behind the lie detector," are unsuitable candidates for polygraphic interrogation? Against the counsel of virtually all who spoke on polygraph policy at the Department of Energy's public hearings last year (transcripts available at http://www.doe.gov/news/fedreg.htm), you went forward with your then-proposed polygraph screening program. You did this despite the fact--which should have been known to you--that polygraph "testing" is fundamentally dependent on the polygrapher lying to and deceiving the person being "tested," and that many, if not most, DOE scientists are aware of this. Detailed information about polygraphy and the trickery on which it depends is publicly available. See, for example, AntiPolygraph.org's free book, The Lie Behind the Lie Detector (http://antipolygraph.org/pubs.shtml). Thousands of scientists have gone out and read the "scientific" literature about the polygraph. They know full well that it's junk science. They find it hard to stomach having their integrity judged by a pseudoscientific procedure that depends on trickery. You now face a dilemma regarding what to do with those troublesome employees who know about "the lie behind the lie detector." Polygraphy depends on the polygrapher "psychologically conditioning" (i.e. lying to and deceiving) the subject. When the subject understands the trickery, the whole exercise is pointless. Forcing these witting subjects to submit to the ritual anyway will only cause well-justified resentment and serves no security interest. On the other hand, Section 3135 of the Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2001 (http://www.fas.org/sgp/congress/2000/defauth.html#3135) severely limits your powers to grant waivers. Thus, I ask again, what is the Department's policy regarding those whose understanding of "the lie behind the lie detector" makes them unsuitable candidates for polygraphic interrogation? Specifically, when an employee or contractor admits to a DOE polygrapher that he or she understands the trickery on which the procedure depends, how are DOE polygraphers to proceed? Sincerely, George Maschke AntiPolygraph.org PS: A copy of this message will be posted on AntiPolygraph.org at: http://antipolygraph.org/read.shtml.