Wake-Up Call: FEMA trouble

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Among the residents who evacuated in the face of a fast-moving fire in Boulder this week was Michael Brown, current consultant and talk-show host, and former head of the Federal Emergency Management Agency, a man who will be forever linked with this remark by President George W. Bush over his handling of Hurricane Katrina: "Heckuva job, Brownie."

Brown certainly knew how to handle himself in the Boulder evacuation situation -- he has a "go bag" always packed -- and, as he shared with me in a wide-ranging interview a year after Katrina, there was a lot more to the Katrina situation, too, including a complete disconnect between FEMA, the Department of Homeland Security and the White House.

Janet Napolitano, the next head of Homeland Security, could do worse (and likely will) than listen to Brown's cautionary tale. And you can listen to him on KOA, where he does a weekend show and frequent fill-in work. -- Patricia Calhoun

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Join the Westword community and help support independent local journalism in Denver.


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