Thursday, November 03, 2005

who will rescue the rescuers?

hurricane katrina had just hit the gulf region. the levees had broken. the city was flooding. tens of thousands of people were trapped in the city. many of them would die if they weren't rescued. but never mind them... who was going to rescue michael brown, head of FEMA?

courtesy of a tip from dje, we find this cnn piece:

Rep. Charlie Melancon, whose district south of New Orleans was devastated by the hurricane, posted a sampling of e-mails written by Federal Emergency Management chief Michael Brown on his Web site on Wednesday.

The e-mails Melancon posted, a sampling of more than 1,000 provided to the House committee now assessing responses to Katrina by all levels of government, also show Brown making flippant remarks about his responsibilities.

"Can I quit now? Can I come home?" Brown wrote to Cindy Taylor, FEMA's deputy director of public affairs, the morning of the hurricane.

A few days later, Brown wrote to an acquaintance, "I'm trapped now, please rescue me."

"In the midst of the overwhelming damage caused by the hurricane and enormous problems faced by FEMA, Mr. Brown found time to exchange e-mails about superfluous topics," including "problems finding a dog-sitter," Melancon said.

Melancon said that on August 26, just days before Katrina made landfall, Brown e-mailed his press secretary, Sharon Worthy, about his attire, asking: "Tie or not for tonight? Button-down blue shirt?"

A few days later, Worthy advised Brown: "Please roll up the sleeves of your shirt, all shirts. Even the president rolled his sleeves to just below the elbow. In this [crisis] and on TV you just need to look more hard-working."

On August 29, the day of the storm, Brown exchanged e-mails about his attire with Taylor, Melancon said. She told him, "You look fabulous," and Brown replied, "I got it at Nordstroms. ... Are you proud of me?"

An hour later, Brown added: "If you'll look at my lovely FEMA attire, you'll really vomit. I am a fashion god," according to the congressman.

brownie is a regular comedian. some of his emails are witty and actually pretty funny... or they would be if conan o'brien wrote them. but for the head of the dept in charge of saving people to be jokingly asking his friends to "rescue me" is a little too darkly ironic. people were dying in an actual emergency situation, and brownie was worried about how his tie looked or how long he'd get for dinner. shameful.

i mean, i don't want to play the blame game or anything, but this guy was completely incompetent. who put him in charge? oh yeah...

1 comment:

drbmd said...

NOW AT SONIC! (for a limited time only)
order the "brownie" #2 combo;
meal includes a sonic burger, tater tots & a large diet cherry limeade!

"brownie - you're eating a heck of a meal."
- George W. Bush