Saturday, January 10, 2015

Wounded Warriors?

We all want only the best for our returning warriors, all of them.  Most are blessed with having escaped their service all in one piece physically and mentally, though changed as only a Veteran can know.  The fortunate ones.

But what about those who return less than whole…those with less than four limbs and two eyes, those with less than a whole brain, those who have traumatic brain injuries, and those who’s trauma is post-traumatic stress-related, in short, those who looked upon the face of pure evil, defied it, and came away scarred for life, physically and/or emotionally/psychologically?   

What do we owe those who sacrificed parts of themselves in service to the nation?  Do we not owe them the very best care, repair, rehab, and release to their families and their homes, even adapted to suit whatever handicaps the Veteran faces? 

Really, it is the least we can do for those who sacrificed so much. 

So, why aren’t we doing it?  Why do we see ad after ad for Wounded Warrior Project?  Why is the American Legion starting their own Wounded Warrior Project?  Why so many organizations making an effort to collect money “…on behalf of the Wounded Warriors, send us your money and we’ll send you a blanket?”

Where is Congress and the VA on this issue?  Especially, where is Congress?  We probably have more Veterans in Congress now than at any time in the past 50 years.  Where are their heads?  Don’t answer that! 

And the VA?  Remember when the financial crisis started about six or seven years ago, with Wall Street Corporations “too big to fail?”  Then they failed.

The VA is too big to succeed.  It won’t succeed.  It cannot succeed.  It is too politicized, too unionized, and too bloated with unnecessary staff and real estate for anyone to manage successfully. 

And our Congress, bless their hearts, in a fit of justified moral outrage at the recent indignities of some of those VA employees, just threw tons of money at the VA and said “Fix it!” 

And the VA gathered in the bags of your tax dollars, smiled, and said to Congress, “Thanks, we’ll get right on it.”  Suuurrrre they will!   

The VA is spending most of its efforts sending out press releases, many of which are to announce that reforms mandated by Congress cannot be complied with due to union contractual, and Civil Service rules. 

Too big to succeed.  Maybe Congress is, as well.  Frankly, serving in the US Congress, or any state legislature, should never be a career thing.  There should be no retirement package.  Why, for 2 deliberative bodies totaling 537 elected officials combined [plus the Vice President], do we need six enormous office buildings?  Six!  Three for the 437 member House of Representatives, and three for the 100 member [plus the Vice President] Senate.

A biblical passage was used by Samuel F. B. Morse to be the first message sent over a telegraph wire:  “What hath God wrought!”  Maybe we should start asking ourselves, “What hath the Voters of this nation wrought?”  Maybe we should start with making it illegal to be a lawyer and set foot in the District of Columbia, unless you are a Judge.  And that includes making it illegal for any attorney to hold an elected or appointed office.  Go back to lawyering and leave the governing to the people. 

In the moral abscess that is the Department of Veterans Affairs, the Department of Defense, and our Congress, their grows a vacuum in thought about our Veterans, in particular, our Wounded Warriors.  Into that vacuum a few good folks have inserted these Wounded Warrior projects simply because the DVA, DoD, and US Congress have decided it is more important to study the effects of radiation on generations of fruit flies than to provide long term care, prosthetics, and rehabilitation staff and facilities for those who came back less than whole. 

Damn all of the DoD, DVA and US Congress for their lack moral rectitude, inability to have the correct priorities, and quite simply, to know the difference from right and wrong.  Damn them all. 

Next election, vote only non-incumbents.  Next war, refuse to go.  Let those we’ve here damned go and fight the next war.  Let them come back less than whole, and see what their government doesn’t do for them. 

The DVA has adopted a passage from Abraham Lincoln’s Second Inaugural Address as their Mission Statement.  It is: “…to care for him who shall have borne the battle and for his widow, and his orphan…”. 

In that statement there are no limits to the number of Veterans, or the time and resources required to provide that ‘care,’ -- and little is done for the widow and orphan but for a pittance of a monthly stipend. 

For God’s sake, let us stop naming post offices, and studying fruit flies and fruit bats, and start providing full, permanent care for all of those “who have borne the battle” and who came back less than whole, and their families, and more care for the widows and orphans of those who did not come back at all. 

It is the very least we can do, and we are not even doing that.

”It is a stain on this nation's honor that the Department of Veterans Affairs has become a deadlier and more difficult adversary to the American veteran than any they have ever faced on a battlefield."-- VNVets

"The concept that Agent Orange, and its effects, stopped dead in its tracks at the shoreline is simply too illogical, and too ludicrous to accept. What does that say about the Obama Administration and his Department of Veterans Affairs?"--VNVets

"With malice toward none; with charity for all; with firmness in the right, as God gives us to see the right, let us strive on to finish the work we are in; to bind up the nation's wounds; to care for him who shall have borne the battle, and for his widow, and his orphan--to do all which may achieve and cherish a just and lasting peace, among ourselves, and with all nations." --President Abraham Lincoln

"It follows then as certain as that night succeeds the day, that without a decisive naval force we can do nothing definitive, and with it, everything honorable and glorious."
--President George Washington
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