Saturday, November 15, 2014

The Very Least

In celebration of Veteran’s Day earlier in the week, I spent a day at a training called VA Navigation. (Well, not so much in celebration, more of a coincidence.) From the title of the offered training, would it be fair to assume instruction would involve Navigating the VA system? 

That, my friend, is where you would be wrong. It was about assessing service members for needs. While accurate assessment of personnel, military or otherwise, is a valuable endeavor, it does not assist me in connecting properly assessed, prior military personnel to VA services that they are entitled to.

They did play this video, which the vets in attendance found pretty damn funny.

However, as far as I can tell, the US government’s primary role in VA services is to circumvent them, lie that they are providing them and then profess outrage at the inadequacy when the state of affairs are exposed.  

As you may recall, my current area of domesticity had a few very ballsy whistle blowers that were able to attract media attention. That dust up resulted in the “not-firing” resignation of the Secretary of Veteran’s Affairs and a change in legislation. 

A brief indulgence, if I may. The Senator of Subterfuge has been in national office since 1983. As a retired, disabled and POW vet, I would think he might have paid attention to or acknowledged issues prior to the public Arizona VA shellacking. Just a thought for the future state shellackings that are coming. 

Sadly, the change in legislation has not resulted in the actual firing as opposed to the “not-firing” of the recommended 1000 employee firings that are requested by the current Secretary of Veteran Affairs. If you want a review (which is pretty damn interesting but not pretty damn funny) here are a few brief articles: 


I did meet some very awesome people at the training, including fantastic volunteers from Mission Continues and a vet sitting next to me who helps other vets access the GI bill at one of our Universities. (He was also amply ready for the pretty damn big gun show, if you know what I mean.) 

A list of additional nonprofits, founded by people, several veterans, who saw a need for service members and made efforts to correct it.

The fact that there is a need because of our government’s piss poor ability to do anything for anyone who doesn’t have billions of dollars to give to a political campaign is pretty damn criminal.  

Providing services, making good on their word, is the very least the government can do. The very least.  

After you watch this last clip of a marine injured when he covered a grenade to save a fellow soldier, just answer this question for me.  If a private corporation caused this much injury to a young man, what would the legal and financial liability be?

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