MMQB: Supersized Bill Likely a DOA, says AMVETS

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Supersize me

In the country that invented Happy Meals, supersizing has become a way of life, whether it be a truck or a Whopper meal. Congress is looking at pulling a supersized failure for the upcoming veteran bills wrapped into S. 1982.

In what AMVETS calls a bill that includes throwing in the kitchen sink,  veterans should proceed with caution.

Hi. My name is Benjamin Krause – founder of this website and fearless leader of one (me). Lately, both parties have been rejuvenating different ways to figure out how to generate favor within the veteran ranks.

I’m going to keep this one short and sweet.

The answer for those pandering parties is to truly back veteran issues. However, that kind of an answer is too straightforward. Instead, they seek ways to divide the veteran and minority vote to both get elected and on the other hand not say anything relevant.

This week I’d like to talk about this form of politics. We will call it (modern Republicans and Democrats) the Tammany party, which is the party of the sellouts from the 1930’s and before.

 

AMVETS on Supersizing S. 1982

Here is the AMVETS’ press release on this bill. I’ll let you all take it from here. Research the bill and contact your elected officials:

There are some organizations holding back and asking the hard questions about Senator Bernie Sanders’ (I–VT) supersized veterans’ bill, S.1982 (formerly S.1950, the Comprehensive Veterans Health and Benefits and Military Retirement Pay Restoration Act of 2014). We at AMVETS and Concerned Veterans for America (CVA) certainly appreciate the good intentions of Senator Sanders in introducing S.1982 and those of our colleagues for supporting it. Many have rallied to the flag of S.1982 in large part due to the prospect of the reinstatement of COLA benefits without fully examining the details and practicality of the bill.

While we agree the bill addresses many critical issues and recommends important solutions for our veterans we do not support this bill for several reasons. First, it would be morally irresponsible and fiscally unsound, given the historically volatile situation in Afghanistan, to hang the funding for such robust legislation on any potential “peace dividend.” Throwing more money — upwards of $30 billion, and taken from war funds no less — at a failing department will only make matters worse.

This kitchen sink-like bill also endeavors to be all things to all veterans, and is very enticing to all of us ‘Veterans Service Organizations’ as the panacea for all of our legislative agendas. The problem is, in its current configuration, it has little to no chance of passage. It’s just too “pie in the sky” and has lacks the power base to hold VA accountable for providing excellent care and services to veterans currently accessing the system.

At present there’s a distinct lack of bi-partisan support for S.1982. Inviting political infighting to get in the way could potentially relegate this legislation to no more than a political exercise. There is so much good they could do by supporting legislation that has potential for bi-partisan support and passage. Sen. Ayotte’s (R-KY) S.1977, for example, seeks to repeal section 403 of the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2013 (repealing the military retirement COLA cuts) while not adding additional deficit spending. With similar bi-partisan support is Sen. Blumenthal’s (D-CT) S.1281, the Veterans and Servicemembers Employment Rights and Housing Act of 2013. This nearly cost-neutral legislation would make it illegal to discriminate against individuals based on their military or veteran status and give veterans legal recourse. In fact, twelve states have passed state laws similar to S.1281 to protect vets.

The passage of S.1982 would unfortunately condemn S.1281 to a mere study, the Washington term for make work, kill slowly, or death by committee. At any rate it will be delayed at best for years and at worst killed off quietly while our veterans continue to have problems with employment and housing.

We all want what’s best for the veterans community, and many of the provisions in S.1982 are positive. However, ‘bigger’ doesn’t mean ‘better,’ and the Sanders bill further expands a VA system that is already overwhelmed and cannot meet the current needs of veterans. Before overcommitting the Department of Veterans Affairs and subjecting our veterans to more broken promises, Congress should rally on legislation that keep the promises already made.

Source: http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/supersized-veterans-bill-promises-much—mostly-broken-promises-says-stewart-hickey-of-amvets-244033571.html

 

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5 Comments

  1. First things First. I seen that Supersized Bill, and i took offense to that remark when i look into the mirror and seen the size of my belly.

    Benjamin, every Monday I wake up and look forward to starting my week off reading your MMQB. Thank you for keeping us informed and getting me fired up right away to get my week started.

    My good friend this past week asked me a good question, He said; “Bill everyday you wake up, your hurting. Go to bed, your still hurting. All you Veterans seem to do is fight for what should be an automatic but you never seem to get what you deserve. So the question I have, would you do it all again?”

    I just smiled at him and said yes, PROUDLY do it all again and I am sure my fellow Vets feel the same way.

    I wanted to share this with everyone, to say:

    Thank You for your great service. Never give up the fight and stand strong together.

    This is what being a Vet means so much to me.

    God Bless the Vets and especially the ones still serving. And Thanks Mr. Krause for keeping us informed

  2. Well, I totally enjoy this post. And reading it fires me up. ,DENIED for a back injury, funny, those parts of my medical records are missing. A PTSD, 2 MST. My back I took care of. Exercised. My demons I locked up for 32 years. One week, 3 events, the door opened. I refused going to the doctor’s constantly for my back, why? The drug we all call Motrin. Yes, back in the day, and even now, this drug is more toxic to your liver than Tylenol. And because I wasn’t a whiner, I carried on. I hate when people say ” god bless you,” well truly, if god had blessed me, I wouldn’t have had those experiences correct? If I had it to do again, I doubt I would. Why? Well, now going to the VA here in Dallas maybe the reason! Treatment Is not done correctly for anyone with MST. When you state no men, since all three were men, is it a test of is she lying? Then calling the hotline because I have had 2 panic attacks before noon and a social worker stating, you should call me, I will call back in 24 hours! And DBT therapy, since I have studied this, I see they do not follow the way it is strongly recommended! Now, on to my back. An accident in February 2013, I was fine for a couple months, but slowly I couldn’t sit, standing hurt like hell, and now left in my bed, waiting for the VA to get my records that were mailed locally 2 weeks ago. No pain meds till then. I have one pill. But seeing as my first child I seriously no joke went with 33 hours of labor, no meds, until finally a doctor realized a problem. They did a CT Scan, nice to know I had poop in my bowels, would have been smart to have me drink “go lightly” the night before, ( no, nothing light about it!) To hear a doctor state all looks well with your fusion. I stated, I’ve heard those words before, then had a third surgery, so taking pain pills, living in a bed, not the answer! And I do not jest! I will kill myself first before another 7 years of torment in a damn bed. And I stated, “FUCK THAT IDEA!” Maybe he thinks I am frustrated, so spouting off, he has no clue about me and when I do speak, I mean it! He suggested neurology, did he do a consult? Nope! Listen, my body I know, afterall we have shared all experiences together. So this congress needs to be “refreshed.” Which means, term limits, only two terms, salary cuts, they deserve no more than 50 k a year, afterall, they are in it to serve the people right? So Ben, if you can continue, please do. I enjoy reading and remaining informed. And may you also look into the sailors who were Fukushima’d, and now But then again stay away from the tv for media outlets, because truly, we are all Fukushima’d!

  3. Denise, I feel for you. I been fight for my back injury for over 4 years with the VA. During my BVA hearing last May. the Judge had nothing negative to say about my claim and her only question she asked was “why, when i filed for social security did i not mention my back injury during the Navy?”
    And as i stated to her, The social Security information person informed me not to mention the military injury because it would just slowed down your social security claim and that all i should mention is the two failed back surgeries,

    Well the rest of the BVA hearing we talked about the weather, football scores and what ever stuff was going on. BUT NOT ONE NEGATIVE THING ABOUT MY CLAIM THAT THE VA COULD PROVE ON A BAD DAY IN AND THIRD WORLD COUNTRY COURT.

    But i guess that is not good enough, so now i wait and i wait and I wait.

    I know now i should of laid down in the 80’s with my back instead of trying to do things right and work through the pain all these years. but i never thought I would have to fight the VA on per speculation and BS.

    Getting back to you Denise and for the rest of my veterans; NEVER GIVE THEM THE SATISFACTION OF GIVING UP! Fight until u can’t fight anymore and another Vet will step up to help you fight the fight.

    NEVER

    GIVE

    UP!!!

  4. WE HAVE TO REMEMBER, AMERICA IS THE LAND OF “OPPORTUNITY”, EVEN THE “FILTHY” RICH CAN SEE THEIR FORTUNES GROW. WE THAT WORK HARD MUST CONTINUE TO FIGHT FOR OUR RIGHT TO SHARE IN THIS DREAM. THE VA KNOWS WHAT IS “OWED” FOR WHAT HAS BEEN “GIVEN”, BUT THOSE “IN CHARGE” HAVE NO CLUE. UNTIL WE GET THOSE WHO “UNDERSTAND” “IN CHARGE”, OUR PLIGHT WILL BE TO KEEP OUR STRUGGLE IN THE “FOREFRONT”. I TRULY BELIEVE THAT ONE DAY, SOON”, AMERICA WILL STEP UP TO THE “PLATE”. I FOUGHT IN A WAR(VIET NAM) THAT WAS UNPOPULAR, DRAFTED OUT OF COLLEGE, AND IF I HAD TO GO AGAIN, I WOULD. I HAVE NEVER BEEN MUCH ON “VOLUNTEERING”, AND DO NOT THINK I WOULD CHANGE THAT, BUT IF ASKED TO DEFEND AMERICA( THE IDEA), I WOULD GO. ONE THING I HAVE LEARNED ABOUT THIS COUNTRY IS, YOU DO NOT MOVE UP BY WAITING FOR WHAT YOU HAVE “EARNED”, YOU HAVE TO “GO” AND TAKE IT. (LEGALLY) THE LAWS DO WORK, IT JUST TAKES A LITTLE LONGER FOR US “REGULAR JOES”.

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