Tuesday, April 12, 2016

Close VA Is Dumbest Thing I've Ever Heard

Why do we pay politicians a salary plus benefits if they do everything possible to make sure the government doesn't work? Do they really think we're that dumb?

Getting really tired of hearing them complain about the Affordable Care Act not working at the same time they want to send veterans into all that mess. Plus the kicker is, they've have since 1946 to make it work right for all our veterans. You know, the men and women putting their lives on the line at the same time politicians try to kill off the VA.

None of what we see today is new. Look it up! Backlog of claims followed by hearings, followed by more money, followed by more generations suffering because nothing got fixed right in the first place.
The House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs’ historic legacy is captured in the Committee’s hearing rooms in the Cannon House Office Building, Rooms 334 and 340. The Committee has been formerly known by many names including the Committee on Naval Affairs and the Committee on World War Veterans’ Affairs. After the Legislative Reorganization Act of 1946, the Committee became formally known as the House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs. Even though the Committee’s name has changed over the years, its mission has remained constant – to represent America’s veterans, their families, and survivors.
Senate Committee on Veterans' Affairs

From: Encyclopedia of the United States Congress.

One of 16 standing committees in the Senate in the 108th Congress (2003–04), the Senate Veterans' Affairs Committee has jurisdiction over matters concerning military veterans. These issues include veterans' benefits and pensions, readjustment of service members to civilian life, military life insurance benefits, veterans' hospitals and medical facilities, vocational rehabilitation and education of veterans, and national cemeteries. The committee has no subcommittees.

The Senate Veterans' Affairs Committee was created by the Legislative Reorganization Act of 1970 and was organized for the first time at the start of the 92nd Congress on January 3, 1971. It was the first standing committee of the Senate to specifically consider legislation of concern to veterans. The committee maintains a low public profile and has a fairly narrow scope of policy to consider. The committee's constituency is made up mainly of veterans and veterans' organizations. Veterans' Affairs has developed close working relationships with veterans' groups and often begins each session of Congress with public hearings to receive each group's legislative agenda for the year.

Veterans' Affairs has had a precarious existence from the very beginning. When the Legislative Reorganization Act of 1946 created the modern congressional committee system, the House of Representatives established a Veterans' Affairs Committee, but the Senate did not. Instead, in the Senate legislation pertaining to veterans was referred to several different committees, including the Finance Committee, the Labor and Public Welfare Committee, the Interior Committee, and the Post Office and Civil Service Committee. A number of senators sympathetic to veterans' groups who wanted a Senate standing committee for veterans' issues made several attempts to create one in the years between 1946 and 1970.

During the 1970 legislative reorganization, the Senate Veterans' Affairs Committee was finally established. Only six years later, in 1976, a legislative reorganization committee recommended that the committee be abolished. It survived because the Senate Rules Committee did not adopt the recommendation.

When you have politicians pretending it was not their job to make sure they got it right, this is what you end up with.
VA health panel on closure report: ‘Nothing was done in secret’
Military Times
Patricia Kime
April 11, 2016

Members of a blue-ribbon panel studying VA health care defended the group’s work last week, deflecting charges they want to shutter all Veterans Affairs medical facilities in favor of government-paid private care for veterans.

George E. Wahlen Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Center, Salt Lake City, Utah (Photo: VA)

Commission on Care member Darin Selnick and chairwoman Nancy Schlicting said last week that a “strawman" paper drafted by seven commissioners "was created to jot down initial ideas” and did not represent a final report from the congressionally mandated group.

"The scenario presented is one of several that have been proposed. As the term strawman implies, the document was created by a subset of commissioners to describe their personal ideas ... it represents options on a range of possibilities the commissioners are evaluating," Schlichting wrote in a statement on the commission's website.

"We are going to continue to take input, continue to shape [our views] ... No one is going to fully understand our position until we understand our position, and that’s not going to happen until we create the final report. And that comes out in June,” Selnick said.

The 34-page document proposes giving all veterans access to private health services and closing VA health facilities gradually over 20 years, starting with those that are obsolete or underutilized in a process similar to a base realignment and closure.

The report also calls for VA to become “primarily a payer,” much like Medicare, to provide health care for veterans.
read more here

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