Michael “heckuva job Brownie” Brown is back. First, presidential candidate Jeb Bush released a video touting in his hurricane management bonafides that includes some footage of the former Florida Gov alongside Brownie. However, Bush is not the only one feeling forgiving about the former FEMA chief. Brownie, himself, penned a longform piece for Politico titled, “Stop Blaming Me for Hurricane Katrina.”
Bush’s two minute video includes clips of storms hitting Florida followed by testimonials and voiceovers praising Bush’s crisis management. (Watch it below).
A little after the 50 second mark, the audience is treated to a shot of Jeb and Brownie standing side-by-side in a command center. As the shot plays, Bush declares,”We have the best emergency response team on the ground, in the country and in the world.”
Meanwhile over at Politico, Michael Brown is offering up a lengthy defense that is a cross between a manifesto, a tell-all, and self help guide. The argument centers on assigning blame to local leaders, the pitfalls of poor media relations, and the Beltway’s thirst for scapegoats.
Ray Nagin and Kathleen Blanco are put in the cross hairs for their failure to evacuate earlier as well as a subsequent clash of federalizing the disaster. Time Magazine is accused of defamation. The famous nickname is discussed. Brown contends that many actions were nut within his power and that the evacuation of stranded residents was actually very organized. (He blames Anderson Cooper for portraying the rescue effort as “disjointed, in disarray and uncoordinated.” Brown says, “Nothing could have been further from the truth.”)
Most of all Brown thinks that citizens should stop looking to the government for help during hurricanes. He writes, “The American public needs to learn not to rely on the government to save them when a crisis hits. The larger the disaster, the less likely the government will be capable of helping any given individual. We simply do not have the manpower to help everyone.”