This is a very tough article in the New Republic's website on FEMA Director Michael Brown by Paul Campos, a professor at the University of Colorado Law School. Campos has written intelligently about the university's buffoonish "Native American" Prof. Ward Churchill. Here he surveys Brown's legal career and finds that there is very little to it. Perhaps there is more to be said in Brown's behalf: I'm waiting to hear it. And we should remember that resumes don't tell you everything about a person; working with him or her tells you much more. I've encountered people with thin resumes who are very good at what they do and people with thick resumes who are very bad. Instinct, interpersonal skills, and common sense count for something, and they don't necessarily show up on resumes. Nonetheless, Campos's reporting makes Brown appear very lightly qualified. And George W. Bush may indeed realize that, if the appointment of Coast Guard Vice Adm. Thad Allen to be deputy director and in charge of FEMA activities on the Gulf Coast means what I think it means.
Every administration has its duds, and some have more than others. I would say that the Bush administration has fewer than some others. But it's always unfortunate if an administration has a dud in a position that suddenly becomes transcendently visible.