This was underlined by the Union-Tribune article, “Contractor a master of gaining political access,” by Dean Calbreath and Jerry Kammer. It detailed how Cunningham and House Armed Services Committee Chairman Duncan Hunter, R-El Cajon, worked closely with two local companies â€“ ADCS Inc. of Poway and Audre Inc. of Rancho Bernardo â€“ to make the Pentagon pay for converting printed documents to computer files. They and a few other lawmakers got Congress to allocate $190 million for “automated data conversion” projects from 1993 to 2001.
Did the Pentagon want this “help”? No. As a 1994 General Accounting Office report noted, it already had the tools for such work.
But Cunningham, Hunter and their House allies didn’t care. Audre and ADCS were generous with contributions â€“ and ADCS executive Brent Wilkes allegedly was bribing Cunningham. No matter who griped, lawmakers could always add “earmarks” for pet projects to bills and get their way.
This led to such absurdities as a $9.7 million contract for ADCS to digitize historical documents from the Panama Canal Zone that the Pentagon considered insignificant.
This isn’t governance. This is looting.