Imagine you're a career employee at the Federal Emergency Management Agency, and your agency's new Chief has no experience in emergency management. They couldn't make it in the horse business, and their only qualification as head of FEMA being the previous Chief's college roomate.
One such employee is now speaking out about the cost of cronyism at his agency.
Leo Bosner, a 26-year career veteran at FEMA, and a union leader, told CNN "We told these fellows that there was a killer hurricane heading right toward New Orleans. We had done our job, but they didn't do theirs."
Bosner says he warned the political appointees running FEMA about the Hurricane Katrina, 3 days before the storm made landfall. In his daily alert to Michael Brown, Michael Chertoff, and other officials in the Bush administration, he wrote: "New Orleans is of particular concern because much of that city lies below sea level. If the hurricane winds blow from a certain direction, there are dire predictions of what may happen in the city."
He also says that he raised concerns a year ago about Michael Brown's qualifications to lead FEMA: "I feel badly about the guy. But he took a job he was never trained for. The man was a lawyer."
Call me crazy here, but perhaps the best thing Congress can do immediately is to enact legislation that says the head of the Federal Emergency Management Agency MUST have experience in emergency management (imagine that!)