Davis, Phil, Anne Arundel prosecutor’s campaign paid $40,000 to consulting firm owned by top aide’s wife, March 9, 2018
Speaking of government transparency and ethics, the archival versions of the official State’s Attorney attorney website should be searchable via the Wayback Machine and other internet archives. In an era when governments routinely change online public records–aka “history”–without any legally required public notice, this is especially disturbing. The practice of ensuring that a government agency’s website isn’t or cannot be archived by search engines is hardly unique to Wes Adams; it has become a common practice in Anne Arundel County. Perhaps our politicians learn this seemingly sophisticated technological trick from their campaign managers, who routinely ensure that their campaign websites include the robot.txt file or some other similar archival blocking device (there are many!). But I find it especially disturbing when a State’s Attorney engages in such practices, partly because internet search has become such an integral part of their work. Government agency websites shouldn’t only be PR devices; they should also be genuine public records. And if they must be PR devices that can whitewash history when convenient, the public should be informed of that fact.
Davis, Phil, GOP consultant who left Anne Arundel prosecutor’s office to help re-election campaign, March 19, 2018
A far greater and more systematic ethical conflict than the one described in this article is the AACPS Superintendent’s use of one of his assistant superintendents for political purposes. The primary difference between that ethical conflict and the one described here is not its substance but its politics. In Anne Arundel County, insiders view the superintendent as politically untouchable as long as he retains the political support of his 10,000+ staff. Wes Adams lacks such an army to provide him political cover.