1. Tuesday, September 27, 2005

    get your Brownie shirts while they’re still hot 

    Who’s Brownie? Former FEMA Cheif Michael Brown who, after the horrendous (in)actions of his department was asked to return to Washington DC a few days after the flooding in New Orleans and later resigned.

    The quote “Heck of a job, Brownie” comes from President George Bush upon his first visit to Louisiana, apparently not being told the extent of mishaps that Brown’s team was responsible for.

    Heres a sample of those bunglings from three different articles:

    New York Times 9/11/05:

    “The agency dispatched only 7 of its 28 urban search and rescue teams to the area before the storm hit and sent no workers at all into New Orleans until after the hurricane passed on Monday, Aug. 29.”
    “Rather than initiate relief efforts — buses, food, troops, diesel fuel, rescue boats — the agency waited for specific requests from state and local officials.”

    “Hundreds of firefighters, who responded to a nationwide call for help in the disaster, were held by the federal agency in Atlanta for days of training on community relations and sexual harassment before being sent on to the devastated area.”

    “FEMA would not let the trucks unload,” Mr. Vines said in an interview. “The drivers were stuck for several days on the side of the road about 10 miles from Camp Beauregard. FEMA said we had to have a ‘tasker number.’ What in the world is a tasker number? I have no idea. It’s just paperwork, and it’s ridiculous.”

    Washington Post 9/11/05:

    “Around midnight, at the last of the day’s many conference calls, local officials ticked off their final requests for FEMA and the state. Maestri specifically asked for medical units, mortuary units, ice, water, power and National Guard troops. ‘We laid it all out,’ he recalled. ‘And then we sat here for five days waiting. Nothing!'”

    August 29: “‘We were all watching the evacuation,’ Maj. Gen. Richard Rowe, Northcom’s top operations officer, recalled. ‘We knew that it would be among the worst storms ever to hit the United States.’ But on Monday, the only request the U.S. military received from FEMA was for a half-dozen helicopters.”

    August 30: “Col. Jeff Smith, Louisiana’s emergency preparedness chief, grew frustrated at FEMA’s inability to send buses to move people out….’They have a tracking system and they’d say: “We sent 349.” But we didn’t see them.'”

    “At the noon videoconference, several participants said, Louisiana’s Smith heatedly demanded federal help. Where were the buses? At first, Smith recalled, he had asked for 450 buses, then 150 more, then an additional 500; by the end of the day, none had arrived. The first evacuees did not arrive at the Astrodome until 10 p.m. Wednesday — on a school bus commandeered by a resourceful 20-year-old.”

    September 1: “On Thursday, after FEMA took over the evacuation, aviation director Roy A. Williams complained that ‘we are packed with evacuees and the planes are not being loaded and there are gaps of two or three hours when no planes are arriving.’ Eventually, he started fielding ‘calls from airlines saying, “Well, we are being told by FEMA that you don’t need any planes.” And of course we need planes. I had thousands of people on the concourses.'”

    Time 9/19/05:

    “While people were dying in New Orleans, the U.S.S. Bataan steamed offshore, its six operating rooms, beds for 600 patients and most of its 1,200 sailors idle.

    Foreign nations — responding to urgent calls from Washington — readied rescue supplies, then were told to stand by for days until FEMA could figure out what to do with them.”

    “Last Thursday, as the Red Cross began distributing its own debit cards, thousands stood for hours in the 93 (degree) heat outside the Astrodome in Houston for FEMA cards that never came.”

    so how did BushCo reward Brownie after he resigned in shame because of the one-two punch of having shown no leadership ability, organizational skills, or wherewithall to handle the disaster in the Gulf Coast AND having been exposed as having lied all over his resume which also outted him as someone who had no experience in these matters?

    Well yesterday they hired him to be a consultant

    for FEMA.

    heck of a job, Brownie.

    keep up these sorts of quotes and we’ll be making new shirts soon:

    “I know what I am doing. And I think I do a pretty darn good job of it.” – Brownie, 9/27/05

    (the profits of the tshirts go to the Red Cross)

    original coverage of this scandal + get your brownie merch here