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Tuesday, February 07, 2006

FEMA Leaders' Secret History Explains Katrina Events

EW YORK - February 6 - A previously undisclosed longtime business relationship between the two former FEMA directors appointed by President Bush (replete with unpaid debts, personal bankruptcies and questionable business ethics) lies at the root of the disastrously failed government response to Hurricane Katrina, according to a new investigative report.
 
The report, published by the Real News Project, lays out the checkered pasts of Bush?s first FEMA director, Joe Allbaugh, a longtime confidante of the president, and Michael Brown, the neophyte unaccountably selected by Allbaugh to replace him when Allbaugh left government to launch a career as a consultant and lobbyist.
 
The report explains for the first time why Allbaugh chose Brown, a man with virtually no experience in government or management of any type, and no familiarity with disaster response, to follow him to Washington, and then arranged for Brown to replace him in the top slot. Allbaugh then began signing up clients who wanted ? and got ? FEMA?s lucrative contracts.
 
Both Brown and Allbaugh were accused in the past of fiduciary malfeasance. Before coming to Washington, both were known to associates and creditors not as rising stars but as ethically-challenged, and frequently failed, entrepreneurs.
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