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The Veterans Administration Medical Treatment Scandal


The Veterans Administration Medical Treatment Scandal

There is plenty of blame to go around concerning the massive failures of the healthcare system in the Veterans Administration. Both the media and politicians are focusing on administrative failures at the top and calling for the resignation of the retired General who heads the federal agency like that will fix the problems.

It will not.

Obviously, the decisions to create secret wait lists to hide are horrible. There is no excuse for creating them and putting the lives of our brave veterans in danger. Those who are responsible for creating them should be fired and in some cases prosecuted for criminal activity if their actions are determined to be crimes. Just as obviously, those actions were not ordered by the head of the federal agency who is a veteran himself. They were unauthorized decisions made at the local level and hidden from the top leadership of the agency.

Everyone needs to focus on the guilty parties who made the actual bad decisions to create the secret wait lists first and foremost. However, there are other parties who did help contribute greatly to this horrible situation.

The lack of resources arising from insufficient funding of veterans healthcare comes mostly from political decisions made by members of the United States Senate and the House of Representatives. If your members of Congress voted in recent years against increasing the funding of veteran healthcare to meet the greatly increased need created by the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, they deserve much of the blame for this scandalous situation.

Many of those members of Congress calling for the resignation of the agency head are guilty of voting against adequate funding for veterans healthcare. They are partially responsible for the deaths of veterans who did not get medical treatment fast enough to save their lives. It is just as reasonable to call for their resignations as it is to call for the resignation of the agency head if not more so. The agency head can only call for increased funding. It is up to Congress to vote for the authorization of that funding.
The voters may yet fire those members of Congress who have been voting against veterans’ benefits including healthcare in the next few election cycles.

The largest systematic reform needed is greatly increased funding of veterans healthcare!

The poor execution of those two wars under the Bush Administration plays a significant role. Our soldiers should have been provided with body armor and better protected military vehicles much sooner. This would have reduced the demand side of the veterans’ healthcare economic equation.

An even more important factor in creating the current bad situation was the launching of the Iraq War based on lies. All those Bush Administration officials and their neocon allies who lied us into that needless war on false pretenses are responsible for the injuries to our veterans that are taxing our veterans healthcare system.

None of these politicians who have involved us in reckless and unjustified wars have ever been held adequately responsible for the massive damage they have done to our government finances, international standing, military readiness or the health of our veterans. The lives and health of our soldiers should be valued by the political and economic ruling class over their political power or financial profit. We need to go to war only when we have to and then wisely!

After conflicts are over, we need to fully fund the healthcare and medical needs of our veterans forever even if that means making the political and economic elite pay more in taxes.

Written by Stephen Crockett (small business owner, union activist, talk radio host).
He can be reached by email at, by phone at 443-907-2367 or mail at 7 Planville Drive #1, Fayetteville, Tennessee 37334.