« Last post by blarg314 on Yesterday at 10:32:09 PM »
If you weren't in academia, I'd say to get another job, because your boss is terrible.
You have the responsibility of managing students, but no actual authority when it comes to disciplining bad behaviour. Your boss, who does, has basically no interest in actually managing, and is quite happy to let you put up with crap from students as long as *he* doesn't have to deal with it. His student commits public academic fraud, and he reprimands her about showing up late! He doesn't take the option of giving problem students desks right under his eye, even though that makes complete sense to do so. And the trick with the desks was a pretty nasty thing to do.
However, you're in academia, quitting a postdoc without a new one lined up is career suicide, even for justified reasons, and good postdocs are not easy to come by. What I would do is go back to your boss, and tell him that Evil Bestie's attitude is making it impossible for you to help other students effectively, and ask him directly how you should handle a student who keeps telling you to "zip it" when you're helping another student.
Ideally, what you would do is basically say "You, me, boss's office, NOW!" at which point she would be reamed out by your boss, but I doubt that he's willing to go through the effort. A reasonable boss would have put the problem students right next to his office, so he could monitor them, and would have addressed the other issues already.
But when it comes down to it, you may just have to put up with it, and do your best to make sure it doesn't impact your work productivity, or that of the more reasonable students, until you can get out of there.