Brown's on the left and Chertoff's on the right (Bush loves those bald guys). I am ashamed to say that Chertoff is a "member of the tribe." But so is Robert Siegel of NPR, as well as being a 1964 graduate of Stuyvesant: "Brown pushed from last job: Horse group: FEMA chief had to be asked to resign' The federal official in charge of the bungled New Orleans rescue was fired from his last private-sector job overseeing horse shows. And before joining the Federal Emergency Management Agency as a deputy director in 2001, GOP activist Mike Brown had no significant experience that would have qualified him for the position. The Oklahoman got the job through an old college friend who at the time was heading up FEMA. Michael Chertoff's qualifications? From Counterpounch:"Michael Chertoff, who replaced Tom Ridge as the administration's new chief of the homeland security department, has been praised by the president as a "brilliant thinker" and a tough prosecutor. But his record on immigration cases as an appeals court judge and head of the Justice Department's criminal division under Attorney General John Ashcroft shows an anti-immigrant bias that has many human rights advocates worried.
As Homeland Security director, Chertoff is now in charge of determining the color of the day's terror alert and overseeing what the administration has described as the "home front" in its war against terrorism. Like other recent appointments, Chertoff's prime qualification for the job is that he has proved himself to be a Bush loyalist. Chertoff, who helped write the U.S. Patriot Act, has little to show in the way of actual achievements in directing criminal prosecutions against any of the many hundreds of suspected terrorists detained by the Justice Department. Nonetheless, following the pattern set by the promotions of Alberto Gonzales and Condoleezza Rice to attorney general and secretary of state, Chertoff has fallen upwards in the second Bush administration. Chertoff, a rabbi's son from northern New Jersey, is widely respected for his razor-sharp mind and fearsome courtroom demeanor. A political partisan, Chertoff became special counsel to the Whitewater Commission established in 1994 by the Republican-majority Congress to investigate the involvement of Bill and Hillary Clinton in real estate deals in Arkansas and other business deals. Now widely regarded as a political witch hunt spearheaded by Sen. Alfonse D'Amato (R-NY) and Independent Counselor Kenneth Starr, the Whitewater Commission spent $40 million on the investigation that ultimately failed to find that the Clintons had done anything illegal. Chertoff is a longtime member and activist in the Federalist Society. This national association of right-wing lawyers and judicial reform activists is dedicated to realigning the country's legal system to reflect a more conservative interpretation of the constitution."
From an NPR interview: ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST, ALL THINGS CONSIDERED: Let me ask you about many images Americans are seeing today and hearing about. They are from the Convention Center in New Orleans. A CNN reporter described thousands of people, he says many of them[...] in the streets, no food, corpses and human waste. Our report John Burnett has seen the same things. How many days before your operation finds these people, brings them at least food water medical supplies if not gets them out of there.
MICHAEL CHERTOFF, SECRETARY OF HOMELAND SECURITY: Well first let me tell there have been food water medical supplies to the superdome and that's happened almost from the beginning.
SIEGEL: But this is the Convention Center. These are people who are not allowed inside the Superdome.
CHERTOFF: Well but ya know we have brought this to the Superdome. There are uh stations, um in which we have put food water medical supplies. The limiting factor here is not that we don't have enough supplies.