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Friday, September 09, 2005

Excellent Wapo article on FEMA

Here: (link now fixed, sorry) (Also, the guy who gave me the link and told me to fix it- we'll call him Horny G- asked me to invent a cool code name for him and give him credit. There you go Horny G. Hope you like it.)

Five of eight top Federal Emergency Management Agency officials came to their posts with virtually no experience in handling disasters and now lead an agency whose ranks of seasoned crisis managers have thinned dramatically since the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks.

FEMA's top three leaders -- Director Michael D. Brown, Chief of Staff Patrick J. Rhode and Deputy Chief of Staff Brooks D. Altshuler -- arrived with ties to President Bush's 2000 campaign or to the White House advance operation, according to the agency. Two other senior operational jobs are filled by a former Republican lieutenant governor of Nebraska and a U.S. Chamber of Commerce official who was once a political operative.

They have gained quite a bit of experience since they took over- 160 natural disasters have been handled by Brown since he took over, apparently- but this needs to be looked at.

Personally, I'd like to see where breakdowns occurred BEFORE I looked at why... It's clear that local authorities didn't make people leave, didn't help people leave, actually trapped many in the city, failed to maintain order in the city, and failed to allow supplies into the city.

Had local authorities 1.) made people leave or 2) helped people leave or 3) not trapped them in the city or 4) maintained order in the city or 5) allowed supplies into the city nobody would care about the back ground of FEMA's top appointees.

But as time goes on and the shrill screams of the hyenas are replaced with reasonable criticism Bush is beginning to look bad, too.


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