Nuclear paperweights

Let our journalists help you make sense of the noise: Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily newsletter and get a recap of news that matters.


Thieves of nuclear weapons parts are rarely as innocent as the ones reported in the DENVER ROCKY MOUNTAIN NEWS. Thirty dumpster-diving workers at the now-closed Rocky Flats nuclear weapons plant found themselves extra-special souvenirs in the plant’s trash bins — nuclear bomb components that had failed quality control.

Officials say the workers won’t be punished, since they didn’t realize the error of their ways. In fact, they tended to display the parts on their desks, using them as candy dishes and paperweights. “It was not unreasonable of them to believe they could go in and pick the stuff up,” says an understanding plant clean-up manager.

Nonetheless, an Energy Department report says it’s conceivable that nuclear secrets could have fallen into the wrong hands (what, again?). The report blames sloppy plant inventory controls.

FACT:

Mother Jones was founded as a nonprofit in 1976 because we knew corporations and the wealthy wouldn't fund the type of hard-hitting journalism we set out to do.

Today, reader support makes up about two-thirds of our budget, allows us to dig deep on stories that matter, and lets us keep our reporting free for everyone. If you value what you get from Mother Jones, please join us with a tax-deductible donation today so we can keep on doing the type of journalism 2020 demands.

payment methods

FACT:

Mother Jones was founded as a nonprofit in 1976 because we knew corporations and the wealthy wouldn't fund the type of hard-hitting journalism we set out to do.

Today, reader support makes up about two-thirds of our budget, allows us to dig deep on stories that matter, and lets us keep our reporting free for everyone. If you value what you get from Mother Jones, please join us with a tax-deductible donation today so we can keep on doing the type of journalism 2020 demands.

payment methods

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our free newsletter

Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily to have our top stories delivered directly to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate