06 September 2005

Resumes of Mr. Brown and those (not) running FEMA

If Bush were to fire FEMA director Michael Brown....guess who be running the agency? Responsibilities would be handed to the Chief of Staff and the Deputy Chief of Staff. So, as we take a look at why ALL THREE of these guys are in their high-level, highly-paid, high-profile positions......we are a bit shocked at what we find:

Michael Brown came to this position after being unemployed. He was previously fired from his last private-sector job overseeing fancy Arabian horse shows. His job was to ensure that horse-show judges followed the rules. Brown was forced out of the position after a spate of lawsuits over alleged supervisory failures.

"He was asked to resign,'' Bill Pennington, president of the IAHA at the time, has confirmed.

Brown also tried running for Congress in 1988 but only won 27 percent of the vote.

The unemployed Brown was invited to join the administration by his old Oklahoma college roommate Joseph Allbaugh, the previous head of FEMA so that he could go to work on the president's re-election campaign.

Nothing like having your ex-roomie of 30 years ago that's out of a job run an important agency like FEMA with no prior experience. Horses... disasters.... similar right?

And at the time of the appointment, the administration tried to doctor up his resume by linking him to the Olympic Committee. A resume exaggeration that had to be later retracted.

During a speech at ground zero after 9/11, Bush guaranteed that this lack of response would NEVER happen again after coordination between of reponse teams was so disorganized and so many lives of responders were lost. Guess he forgot about that promise.

"I look at FEMA and I shake my head,'' said a furious Gov. Mitt Romney yesterday (R-MA), calling the response "an embarrassment.''

Yet on Friday when Mr. Bush finally made it down to take a look and do some photo-ops he congratulated Brown....."Brownie, you're doing a heck of a job." Guess he didn't make it outside the photo-op to take a real look around.

Where is Albaugh now? Well, after getting Bush re-elected, he began his own firm to 'consult' with US businesses seeking those juicy and rich government contracts in Iraq. Cozy!

Now, let's move on to the number two and three job at FEMA:

Brown's Chief of Staff is a guy named Patrick Rhode. And, guess what, he was an EVENT PLANNER for Bush's campaign. Rhode has no emergency management experience whatsoever.

From Rhode’s official bio:
His first position with the Bush Administration was as special assistant to the President and deputy director of National Advance Operations, a position he assumed in January 2001. Previously, Mr. Rhode served as deputy director of National Advance Operations for the George W. Bush Presidential Campaign, in Austin, Texas.

And, the Deputy Chief of Staff is Scott Morris. He was a press lacky for Bush’s presidential campaign. Previously, he worked for the company that produced Bush’s campaign commercials. Morris also has no emergency management experience.

From Morris’s official bio:
Mr. Morris was a marketing director for an e-business applications software company in California, and worked for Maverick Media in Austin, Texas as a media strategist for the George W. Bush for President primary campaign and the Bush-Cheney 2000 campaign.

So far the team that is to be first responders in a national emergency is comprised of a fired horse show supervisor, a party planner, and a media guy. And we question where the problems are with response on the Gulf Coast. If I lived there, I would be asking for blood at this point. All of these were direct political appointments as pay backs.....a big thank you from George for all your help, fellas.

Did George think these were cakewalk positions? Especially since he also downgraded the agency and put it under the control of Homeland Security. Poor George, how was he to possibly know that after 9/11 we may actually really need to protect our country from national disaster or terrorism. Maybe the real silver lining may be that the American people will revolt and finally demand some answers, some real culpibility, some real leadership from this administration........and 'not so politely' ask him to STOP the madness of treating the US government as his own little fifedom and private boys club... full of all the requisite perks and privileges.

Where do I sign up for one of these cushy jobs with great pay, excellent perks, no experience necessary?

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