GOOD STEWARDS….It hasn’t been an especially good week for the Bush administration when it comes to responsible use of taxpayer dollars. The news on Monday was discouraging…
After the United States has spent more than $5 billion in a largely failed effort to bolster the Pakistani military effort against Al Qaeda and the Taliban, some American officials now acknowledge that there were too few controls over the money. The strategy to improve the Pakistani military, they said, needs to be completely revamped.
…and the news today is nearly as bad.
A September 2007 State Department report, obtained by TPMmuckraker, found that contractors DynCorp and Blackwater can’t account for $28.4 million in U.S. government-issued property in Afghanistan, including armored cars, guns and radios.
The report, prepared by the State Department inspector-general’s office, hits the department for its lack of “adequate internal control over the government property held by contractors.” It calls the property lists provided by State officials managing the contract in Afghanistan “incomplete and, therefore, unreliable.” The $28.4 million worth of missing or poorly-documented property represents 21 percent of the government property held by DynCorp and Blackwater.
In some cases, the property has disappeared into a bureaucratic morass, thanks to State’s improper bookkeeping. But in other cases, the property appears to be simply gone.
Of course, it’s not just this week — we’ve known for quite a while that the administration “lost track” of $9 billion in Iraqi reconstruction funds, which was followed by the administration being “unable to account” for $1.2 billion it had awarded to DynCorp in Iraq.
I seem to recall a certain president warning voters that Democrats aren’t good stewards of our tax dollars. It’d be funny, of course, if it weren’t so expensive.