The Growing VA Scandal

The Growing VA Scandal

A note to Secretary of Veterans Affairs Eric Shinseki…

Mr. Secretary, when you say you are as “mad as hell” that these allegations out of Phoenix of the VA hospital deliberately cooking the wait lists for appointments, which whistleblowers say may have contributed to the deaths of 40 people who were waiting for the health care that never came… it  might help if you actually sounded passionate and angry when you said those words.  After all, you, sir, are a retired general who commanded men in Vietnam.  If you truly are “mad as hell,” I would at least like to see the proof of that in your voice.  Or some proof of that in your actions, by starting to fire people responsible for turning the medical care of your brothers and sisters in arms into a shell game so they could continue to collect their salaries and bonuses.  You have been VA Secretary since 2009.  Presumably, you were using the VA system long before that.  How on earth can you sit calmly and say that you want to wait for an Inspector General report before you make any decisions on what to do next?

And now, to get us all even more riled up, in light of the growing scandal at the VA, the news broke that the Pentagon is trying to get convicted felon Bradley “Chelsea” Manning transferred to a civilian prison in order to get treatment for “her” gender identity disorder.

Greg Gutfeld went on a righteous rant about this yesterday on The Five, which said it better than I could.  But to sum up what he said, you can break the law, be a convicted felon, and get special medical care for a non-life threatening psychological issue.  Or, you can serve your country honorably, need to see a doctor, go on a waiting list that will be manipulated in order to make the VA system look good.

Got it.

As I wrote back in February, when allegations of a similar nature came up at the Los Angeles VA system, the VA system is the first example we have of how a government-run health care system works.  And with the new allegations in Phoenix, and other stories coming out of other states, the entire concept of a health care system run by the government is getting loudly bashed at the moment by politicians on both sides of the aisle.  Not that they truly realize the irony here – they have pushed people into a health care system that has made them numbers on a page to the government, and now they are crying with outrage that the government-run medical system has treated people like numbers on a page.

But back to the matter at hand.  Either start firing people, Mr. Secretary, or get yourself out of the way so someone else can.  The VA’s mission statement says:

To fulfill President Lincoln’s promise “To care for him who shall have borne the battle, and for his widow, and his orphan” by serving and honoring the men and women who are America’s veterans.

By this measure, and considering the broken system itself, which you have been in charge of for the last 5 years, Secretary Shinseki… you have failed.

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