FEMA Director's prior job: Destroying Arabian Horse Association

This started over at Horse's Ass and made its way upstream to Kos, so perhaps you've already seen this. But it's pretty damning as far as who gets high-profile jobs in the Bush administration.

Mike Brown, FEMA Director, was driven out of his job as "Judges and Stewards Commissioner" of the International Arabian Horse Association for ongoing incompetence and in the face of litigation. The man can't even manage a department within a horse breeder's group, and shortly thereafter he's running FEMA?

Here are the words of the Horse's Ass reader (Horse's Ass is a Washington state lefty blog; it doesn't really have much to do with horses) who brought the matter to the blogosphere's attention:

I think I've told you that I'm into Arab horses. Well, for 3 years Michael Brown was hired and then fired by our IAHA, the International Arabian Horse Assoc. He was an unmitigated, total fucking disaster. I was shocked as hell when captain clueless put him in charge of FEMA a couple of years ago.

He or the WH lied on the WH presser announcing him to FEMA. IAHA was never connected to the Olympic Comm, only the half Arab registry then and the governing body to the state and local Arabian horse clubs. He ruined IAHA financially so badly that we had to change the name and combine it with the Purebred registry.

(This is the press release in question, where the bogus relationship between IAHA and the USOC is claimed:)

From 1991 to 2001, Brown was the Commissioner of the International Arabian Horse Association, an international subsidiary of the national governing organization of the U.S. Olympic Committee.

Now, I did a little more research (to the extent that I read his bio at the White House website), and it looks like the horse job probably wasn't his day job, just a hobby... but even his real resume doesn't give any indication why he should be running FEMA. He has no disaster management experience: prior to running FEMA, he was FEMA's general counsel (i.e. their head lawyer). His pre-FEMA background mentions stuff like special prosecutor work relating to police corruption; his disaster management experience seems to boil down to this one sentence:

"His background in state and local government also includes serving as an assistant city manager with emergency services oversight and as a city councilman."

So the question I'm left with is: how does a small-town-lawyer-from-Oklahoma/horse fancier get into FEMA in the first place and then get in charge? Who has he given money to, and who owes him favors? Since he clearly didn't get where he is based on anything having to do with competence.

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Here's his contribution record

$500 to Bush for the '00 primary on 4/29/99.
$500 to Bush for the '00 primary on 6/15/00.
(Note that he lists his occupation as "Int'l Arabian Horse Association" at this point, not FEMA.)
$250 to the Colorado Republican Federal Campaign Committee on 1/08/04.

That's all. Does that even qualify him to be a Ranger or a Young Pioneer or whatever they call the inner circle of donors? Maybe he has some incriminating pictures or something.

by Crazy Vaclav 2005-09-02 09:42AM | 0 recs


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