Hearing Reveals VA Illegally Spied On House Committee Staffers, Wrote Harassing Notes

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House Committee Staffers

Benjamin KrauseDuring last night’s Congressional hearing, VA employee whistleblowers reported harassment and House Committee staffers reported being spied and harassed during VA investigations. One staffer found a note written by a foolish Philadelphia VA administrator who left it in the bathroom saying the same staffer has a “stick up her ass.” Under Secretary Allison Hickey excused her employee’s behavior, but did not seem too terribly upset about it when questioned.

[see the full VA notepad “stick up her ass” letter here]

[watch the VBA hearing on CSPAN here]

This leads me to ask the only question that makes sense. What new bread of idiots do we have running VA now?

The hearing was called, Evaluation of the Process to Achieve VBA Goals. The shortcoming of the hearing was that no one identified the big premise that can only be brought to the forefront by answering the following questions:

  • Is VA an insurance agency for the DoD?
  • Or, is VA an agency that is designed to honestly and accurately help veterans?

The answer is important, and I am sure the answer is as follows: VA is an insurance company and anyone who says otherwise is lying. It used to be called the Bureau of War Risk Insurance, and the policies of the current VA can be traced to that time in the 1920’s. The duties were later transferred to the Veterans Bureau.

 

FIRST HALF OF HEARING – WHISTLEBLOWERS

The hearing identified that VA employees in Philadelphia were jigging filing dates on claims to create the fraudulent appearance that claims were adjudicated in a timely manner. Thousands of instances of claims dates were changed. Attorney and whistleblower Kristen Ruell reported not only fraudulent claims manipulations but also shredding of numerous files without following VA protocol. She stated 96 boxes of claims mail from veterans and numerous other files were destroyed and/or misplaced by other VA employees.

Employees as St. Petersburg Regional Office were repeatedly harassed and threatened when asking questions about policies that encouraged VA employee fraud. VA employee Javier Soto was fired after blowing the whistle on bad practices requiring that VA employees falsify records.

Ronald Robinson, VA employee and retired First Sergeant, reported a culture that would rather save itself than help veterans get the benefits they deserve at the District of Columbia office.

All in, the first half of the hearing was the dicey, but the second half was a gem of justice thanks to Congressman Jeff Miller, who recently started to swear in VA employees.

 

VA EXECUTIVES COVERING UP – SECOND HALF

The second half, which was focused on VA executives, was a real slam-dunk started off with a notepad that contained derogatory statements about a House Committee staffer written by a VA assistant director. VA employees were told to ignore Congressional staff. That same assistant director later lied to Congress about the matter, and Congressman Miller hammered Under Secretary Allison Hickey on the subject.

While at the office, VA demanded Congressional staff to work in a conference room that was wired with listening and video recording devices that were on. When Congressional staffers objected, they were reassigned to an abandoned OIG room.

The hearing confirmed that the VBMS system is a huge failure. It confirmed the Fast Track Claims process is also a failure. In all, all the silver bullets that I said would fail have failed. VA employees know they are a failure. Only VA executives mindlessly support the programs that have yet to produce tangible results. In the end, veterans were better off with the paper system.

Attorney Ruell stated, “If VA had computer systems like Apple then maybe we can process claims quicker. I can do more on my iPhone than [at my VA computer].” Ruell was harassed and the victim of retaliation after stopping fellow employees from shredding files and falsifying numbers.  She took action by reporting VA employees directly to Under Secretary Hickey after it became clear that local managers were to corrupt to ensure proper processing.

Despite the enormity of the problems, Congresswoman Brown focused on the patently absurd questions, “Has St. Pete’s improved over the past four years?” to a recently fired whistleblower. That whistleblower, Javier Soto, responded, “No.”

Last night, Congresswoman Brown insulted the integrity of veterans by diminishing the impact of this crisis on veterans by placating to her VA supporters. Meanwhile, VA OIG confirmed VA is underplaying the numbers and not following common sense recommendations. OIG specifically stated, “No, we cannot trust those numbers.”

In an effort to drive women’s rights into the stone ages, Congresswoman Brown (D-FL) chastised Congressional staffers for reading the notepad that said one of the staffers, Attorney Rory Riley, head of the DAMA subcommittee, “has a stick up her ass.”

The notepad also indicated VA employees ignore the staffers during the Congressional investigation. Clearly, Florida voters should question the sincerity of Ms. Brown in her clear soft shoeing of questions to Under Secretary Hickey.

 

SYNOPSIS ON TESTIMONY OF UNDER SECRETARY ALLISON HICKEY

As the hearing droned on, Under Secretary Hickey sounded more like a kid looking for a great congratulation for cleaning her room… or a southern cheerleader.

Under Secretary Hickey repeated disproven statistics to bolster VA’s reputation despite obvious reports that the statistics are falsified or irrelevant in light of the significant problems. She also indicated VA will seek another IT fix despite repeated failure of VA’s problems.

Under Secretary Hickey needs to get a clue – her employees are lying to her. It has been proven. Fire them. If a person is on a boat, and a sailor starts shooting holes in the ship, getting another computer system will not fix the fact that your employee is shooting holes in your ship. It will sink.

Under Secretary Hickey, your ship is well on its way to being dubbed the Obama’s Titanic. If you ignore reality and fail to fire employees that lack integrity, you will fail and your legacy will follow.

For those reading this, I have met Under Secretary Hickey before. She is very kind and probably too trusting of the staff under her. It is time she wake up.

Read More: https://veterans.house.gov/hearing/evaluation-of-the-process-to-achieve-vba-goals

 

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32 Comments

  1. While I was on active duty I discovered and was later diagnosed by A doctor at Ft. Jackson, SC, that I had type II diabetes. That was in 1992. I applied for VA Disability and was refused. I reapplied 5 times during the next 10 years. The VA said that I was not disabled and refused to pay me. Coming down with type II diabetes while on active duty is a given for 60% service connected disability. In 2003 They finally agreed with me and paid me back pay from 1999. The reason that the back pay only went to 1999 was because I had been disabled since 1996 form another injury. I had taken a job for 2 weeks and was laid off in 1999. The fact that I had worked or had not worked had nothing to do with my service connected disability. The should have had to pay me from the time I was medically discharged until the current time. They should have paid me around $92,000.00 back pay. Instead they paid me $23,000.00 back pay. I still can’t get it through them that they owe me more money.

  2. THAT IS PAR FOR THE COURSE, WES. WHY DO YOU THINK THEY DENY SO MANY VETS ? MY THEORY IS THE MORE THEY DENY THE LESS THEY HAVE TO PAY.
    MY CLAIM STARTED IN 1979, BUT DUE TO MY SEVERAL BRUSHES WITH THE LAW(PTSD RELATED), MY CLAIM WAS DENIED OVER AND OVER AGAIN AND AGAIN. FINALLY, WITH THE HELP OF AN OUTREACH PROGRAM(VET STAFFED) IWAS AWARDED 50% IN 2005. NOW HERE IS THE “KICKER”, MY BACK PAY ONLY WENT BACK TO 2002. WHERE THEY CAME UP WITH THAT YEAR FROM, IS BEYOND ME. BUT THEY HOPE THAT BY DENYING THEY WILL NOT HAVE TO PAY DUE TO VETS DYING, GIVING UP OR BEING LOST IN SYSTEM OF “JUSTICE”. HOW COLD CAN WE BE AS A UNITED COUNTRY ?

  3. “I know Hickey; she is too kind and too trusting of her staff.” So was Shinseki. This is not Toys R’ Us, Bottom line is she has been totally ineffective and continues to be. She needs to go.

    • I agree, no one was happier than me to see General Shinseki appointed, he is a nice guy, but he was totally and harmfully INEFFECTIVE. Same same is Allison Hickey, she too must go.

      • Larry, who seems like a cover or asst. for/to Ben, it is a quote. go back and read it. not verbatim, i was quoting ben’s article. fuck her, she is not a celebrity, and if i wanted to know her personally i would, but i would rather know a homeless vet who got screwed by the VA than her. wow, i made it about two minutes before i went right back to my ptsd mean guy shit with normal people. thought of the day: think of why we say in combat shit hell zones “If I make it back to the world, I am going to …”. P.S. Fuck hickey again. if anyone buys her “I didn’t know, look how sweet I am KGB style mind games they need to wake up. How many times are we supposed to buy that shit and call it sweet innocence? From how many professional VA liars no matter their level.

  4. Ben I just want to thank you four what your doin for US veterans and what your thoughts are about gas lighting and gang stalking in the VA keep up the good work god bless 2 all veterans stay positive it will work out for you all

  5. Common sense says it is time for everyone in the VA to come clean. Admit guilt and wrong doing and lay it all out.
    If not – throw em out with no pension or severance.

  6. These conditions in the VA only exist because “we the people” allow it. When the welfare of our fellow veterans becomes more important than all the other issues out there that divide us, then maybe we will be able to change things.

    • Since they haven’t issued an invitation to veterans themselves to attend these hearings we have little choice but to allow it, though I doubt they could find a venue large enough to hold all of us. For every whistleblower complaint there are hundreds, maybe thousands, of vets that the guilty ones wrongdoing effects.

      • Hey, Bruce, please have more courtesy when someone here asks for help to see what’s going on. You post some very intelligent, well-stated stuff, but other times post stuff like the unhelpful, childish one here. The goal is to help educate veterans and other interested parties to what is going on with the VA scandal. So if you can’t offer some help to someone, like I did, then leave off with the inappropriate replies so someone else can give an intelligent answer. This isn’t People magazine or Yahoo news..

    • Kevin: Here are the links to USTREAM and CSPAN to the committee hearings for last night and others before that. USTREAM is a service by the Library of Congress and is OK, but CSPAN is better. The difference is that USTREAM will send you notice that the hearing is about to begin — and CSPAN doesn’t provide that service. You have to sign up on USTREAM to get the notices and also click on the “Follow” button above the player.

      USTREAM: https://www.ustream.tv/recorded/50070205 (hearing starts at the 30:00 minute mark, so advance the player to that point; just put your cursor on the feed bar to the 30:00 point)

      CSPAN: https://www.c-span.org/video/?320405-1/hearing-veterans-health-care (CSPAN has some advantages over USTREAM such as closed captioning, complete transcript of the hearings, and other features)

      You can sign up on CSPAN as well and have your own account.

      I encourage you to watch these hearings since you can see firsthand how badly these VA officials lie without shame. Chairman Miller last night told them boldly that no one on the committee believed Allison Hickey’s stories. In the formal setting of the committee hearings, that is the equivalent of calling them liars on national TV. You’ll see some of the committee members tear into the VA officials and really warm their asses up. Its incredible how badly they lie. You can see it in their face and hear it in their tone of voice when they are asked pointed questions. Good luck on you viewing.

      • ***UNCLASSIFIED*** Larry, give me a break, it was my attempt at humor. If you can give me an approved list of what I can and cannot say that would help. You also might want to submit a proposal to your US Representatives to delete free speech and freedom of expression. In the Marines and later in the Army, in Airborne units, we joked about the most gruesome things, as a survival mechanism. This included men in your unit that would get killed or badly wounded and maimed right in front of you, but I am sure you cannot fathom that. Presuming you were not in prolonged combat environments and saw yourself and others you knew well get sliced and diced I will consider that to be the explanation for your sensitivity. Two US Congressman, one Assemblyman, and one US Senator, put a lot of work into my VA claim because my service was and still is top secret majic if you have ever heard of that. “majic” is not a typo, and it is pronounced “magic”. we used to say, sign in combat for unison and synchronized movement purposes, over our headsets or just screaming it, “mission undetermined, destination unknown, we would find out the favorite songs of the enemy in whatever third world toilet bowl we were “vacationing” in, then play those songs, religious or secular, over the loud speakers and PA systems of our choppers (helicopter gunships) and APC’s. I don’t know if I’ll be going home”..in recent years it was changed to “destination ‘top secret’. someone would get cut down, or several someones, sometimes all at once, and you would just be laying there or standing there wondering how much of the blood, brain matter and intestines splatter on you was from your own body or from someone else. there was a monster guy in our unit that we called Werewolf, he would carve out gold fillings of the dead, including our own dead, and much worse, that and much worse became normal and didn’t shock anyone and no one cared. i cannot handle fixing typos in this shit anymore so if it makes sense or not i do not know. i already fixed several because my ptsd is out of control as usual. by the way, ptsd and tbi which i have plenty of both, make the shit i say understandable and theoretically acceptable to anyone who has these things themselves or knows anything about those debilitating conditions. ben surprises me on his sensitivity too because he is 100% for tbi and if i have it right he has a bad case of ptsd on top of that. i know very little about what you did in the service or what happened to you there, but if your unit used to cut the heads off the enemy and put them on stakes to warn their hundreds of buddies to get ready to die, then maybe you and ben would cut me some slack. my father was KIA, my mother was US Intel and KIA, many of my relatives had the same fate, and I feel like I died in 1975 during the TS Magic/Crypto eyes only bullshit straggler rescue shit we did during the fall of saigon. my direct boss was allan kellogg, medal of honor recipient, one of the toughest men you could ever know, and he refuses to talk about this kind of shit to this day unless he caves while giving an interview or a speech or something. he beat me in the face with his swagger stick when I tried to get him to remember something that he was not able to remember, when I refused to tell him what was going on because i was project overlord on that and other missions. the debriefings we all went through were beyond the realm of high pressure and were by any definition outright torture. i can’t say any more than that, but I will say again, i apologize, but at the same time i think it is only fair for you and ben and anyone else sensitive about how some people, and that means a lot of guys who went through the same kind of shit i did, handle themselves to this day, please, cut us some slack. the reason spec forces in the army and special ops in the marines, and combined airborne and ground units of that nature are not protected by the geneva convention is because they violate it as part of their mission. that is nothing secret, all nations know this and follow that odd rule. i will try to be nicer or just avoid reading this blog for awhile or avoid it forever to make sure i don’t mess someone’s head up too much with my issues. last thing, if you have ptsd, how would you like it if you could not discuss your traumas with anyone, any VA doctor, any private doctor, not your wife, not your friend, no one. that is the case for me which was dumped on me recently after i was led to believe secrecy agreements had expired that i was originally bound by. my wife and i were threatened with arrest by VA police, VA CID, and DoD agents at SFVA Medical Center in December after they fooled us into coming down there to finally get ptsd therapy after being blocked for years due to TS majic bullshit rules that i have to follow or go to prison, get executed, shot on the street, etc. sorry if my humor was to dark. semper fi

  7. I think that if the VA can retaliate against its employees for whistleblowing, they will do the same against us veterans when we complain about the same issues.

    • Nana, I sincerely hope and pray that you and other readers don’t think it is only the DVA that retaliates against employees and vets. I resigned my position with an agency because I had seen what happens to whistleblowers, the bureaucrats lie, hide evidence, and harass the individual until they can fire them or they quit. Start at the very top, the POTUS, and get rid of senior administrators in every department through prosecution, then start with mid-levels and unions, by then you may get to Congress who write mealy mouthed legislation which can be interpreted willy-nilly by people who want to preserve the status quo. Unfortunately, fundamental change for the better will not happen in my lifetime, but it doesn’t stop me from trying.

  8. All of this on our dime… What is prohibiting our elected leaders from cleaning house and redefining operational policy for the VA? Perhaps it is the element of government employment being too secure that has bottle-necked this country in situations like these.

    This is deplorable, but would remind that there’s more good and honest government workers than bad-apples. We just don’t hear about them as much since it only takes a handful of idiots to ruin the entire thing.

  9. While I understand the VA is major screwed up I find it hard to believe anything that comes out of Miller’s mouth. Is Hickey clueless..duh! But please remember this has been an ongoing thing with these clowns fir almost a century and the solution is not privatizing and that’s what Miller and his crew want. For those who blame Obama you’re fools…blame the whole process…bureaucracy is EVIL!

    Golfervet

    • Well, you say “fool” to blame Obama? Have you kept up with some of the things going on? I am an Independent, but, unfortunately this country has been on a decline for quite some time. I do have to do my duty and vote, and as I explained to my eldest son about George Bush and the lies and deceit that will follow including the facts that HE ALONE put Texas in debt. It was not about being right when he said you were right, it is however your duty to research and be informed, call it life long “homework.” I do not care what party they belong to, just be true to oneself is what is important. But OBAMA DOES HAVE TO OWN IT JUST LIKE ALL SHOULD, LET ME INFORM YOU AND YOU CAN “GOOGLE IT.” ( my youngest favorite word to his mom) POTUS WHO I DID MY HOMEWORK AND HAD MY AMMO OF WORDS FOR EACH DAY I VOLUNTEERED, HE GOT ELECTED, GREAT, NOT GREAT? HOW WOULD “YOU PERSONALLY FEEL IF YOU SURVIVED ONE PTSD ASSAULT AND YES I MEAN BEAT ME UP, STALKED AND AFTERWARDS WHEN DEMOTED WANTED TO KILL ME.” COOL RIGHT? A YOUNG 18 YEAR OLD WHO WAS BASICALLY EASY TO GIVE SMILES, LOVED LEARNING HAD DREAMS. BUT WHEN A BARRACKS WORKER WHO HIS WIFE PREGNANT AND THEY HUNG WITH A ROUGHER CROWD AT THE HOSPITAL DECIDED TO COME IN AND FORCED HIMSELF UPON ME, YOU KNOW RAPED? I WONDER, WHY WOULD ” POTUS” WRITE AN EXCUTIVE ORDER, THAT ANY MST VICTIM THEY HAVE THE RIGHT TO INVESTIGATE YOUR SEXUAL HISTORY, OH, EFFECTIVE IMMEDIATELY.” ( Oh yes I emailed him, I felt like saying, I kept a journal of all my sexual encounters and was hoping to reach 5,000 in one year, just because I am sarcastic)
      NOW IF HE SUPPORTS EQUAL RIGHTS, HIS STORY ON THE CLIMATE CHANGE? WHY ISN’T ANYONE HEARING ABOUT FUKUSHIMA OR THE USS REAGAN DOCKED AND THE SAILORS NOW SICK? DO YOU BELIEVE WASTING NATURAL RESOURCES LIKE WATER IS A VIABLE ASSEST WHEN IT COMES TO FRACKING AND LOOK UP HOW MANY EARTHQUAKES OKLAHOMA HAD THIS PAST WEEKEND?
      YES THE WHOLE SYSTEM AS WE KNEW IT TO BE HAS BEEN HEADED THIS WAY FOR YEARS, MANY AMERICANS HAVE LEFT THIS PLACE, HECK IN A 12 HOUR PERIOD I HEARD 4 PEOPLE SAY THIS IS THE WORST COUNTRY AND THEY HAD WORKED ELSE WHERE!
      I AM MAD AS HELL. ONE DAMN CANT WRITE WHAT THE TRUTH IS MADE ME LOOK TO BE “ADDICTED TO PAIN MEDICATION” HOW THE HECK WOULD SHE KNOW? SHE WAS NOT MY DOCTOR, I HAD 3 BACK SURGERIES, ARTHRITIS ( REACTIVE AND THERE ARE WAY MORE AS WELL, JUST FYI, THESE DOCTORS WHO DIAGNOSED ME WITH REACTIVE ARTHRITIS AND FIBROMYALGIA AND DID THE SPINE SURGERIES THEY ARE THE BEST THAT PEOPLE FROM OTHER STATES COME TO SEE) SHE ALONE HAS CREATED MORE DAMAGE AND I CALL IT LIKE I SEE IT, A TOTAL WASTE OF DOLLARS A PROGRAM THAT ISNT GOING TO WORK AND DAMN DOCTORS WHO CANNOT READ REPORTS LOOK LIKE BLASTED DAMN FOOLS!
      AM I MAD? YOU BET I AM! BECAUSE I AM SO ALLERGIC TO MANY PAIN MEDICATIONS I AM LIMITED. THANKS DEA AND THE DAMN VA WHO CANT GET IT RIGHT. A CAR ACCIDENT, A DECLINE IN MY BACK, TWICE NOW I SEE IT STATES THORACIC SPINE LOOKS OKAY BUT A PORTION IS NOT NORMAL BUT COULD BE POSITION? SERIOUSLY, THEY ARE NUMBERED, IT IS EVERY DAMN POSITION, I CANT SIT, BACK TO USING A DAMN CANE AND WALKER THAT I FOUGHT LIKE HELL TO REGAIN ME BECAUSE I AM NO QUITER AND BY ANYONE WHO THINKS THEY CAN LIE, MAKE UP A DIAGNOSIS SO THEY CAN RUN A TEST? YOU ARE OFFICIALLY SCREWED! YOU WOULD LOOK AT ME AND THINK, “BET SHE DOES’T KNOW MUCH, AND OH HOW SO EVER WRONG YOU WOULD BE!” MY MEDICAL KNOWLEDGE IS EXPANSIVE AND THAT GOES FOR MEDICAL BILLING AND CODING, PSYCHO/SOCIAL AND ESPECIALLY THE HUMAN ANATOMY! SO IS OBAMA RESPONSIBLE FOR THE CONTINUED CORRUPTION? THINK IT OVER, GOOGLE FACTS, DIG ENOUGH AND MAY YOU LEARN SOME TRUTHS! WHAT EVER DID HAPPEN TO THE WHITE COLLAR CRIMINALS CALLED BANKERS HE WAS GOING TO DEAL WITH?
      DONE DEAL. I KNOW ONE DIRECTOR BETTER BE WILLING TO DEAL WITH TWO VETERANS, AND BETWEEN THE TWO OF US, HE BETTER REALIZE I HAVE STUDIED AND KNOW MY STUFF IS ALL IN ONE SOCK, CAN HE SAY THE SAME? HE LOOKED GOOD ON FAUX PAS VIEWS, GEE THE OTHER REPORTER I KNOW STATED HIS EMAIL WAS BLOWING UP!
      AS THE OLD SAYING GOES, “STUFF ROLLS DOWN HILL!”

    • Where are we all going? why do we allow these things to continue? why is there so much hate in our country? why do so many hate this President so much, when we all know he has done more for Veterans than those before him.
      We have a lot of problems in our country that need to be dealt with yesterday not tomorrow, all of the problems that have now grown out of control exsited long before Obama. We have had presidents after president make promises to change our Education system health Insurance Immigration and wages paid. And each after getting into office did nothing, and now we have one who has at least tried to do with great resistance.
      He has done so much and has received so little thanks, we allow a choice of some one he appointed to protect us, to look down on him and question his ability. When the truth is any of us can put our trust in a person and faith, and that person fails. This happens in our homes every day with people we love, so why are we so pissed when someone hired to do a job fails?
      Who we should be mad at is our congress and senate, who are only working part time when being paid for full time work. Why have we not spoke of this, cause if they where there full time then a lot of problems that need solving would be worked on and maybe solved.
      We the 2% of people who go to fight the wars that our leaders send us to, need to be raising hell about this part time job that pays full time wages and full time benefits, and we say nothing!!
      We al need to ask why does VA employees get bonus for their 40 hour a week job with health insurance, I’m sure there are lots of people like myself who would take the job without the bonus in a drop of a dime.
      So can anyone out there tell me why the bonuses? because I’m sure the money paid in bonuses could be use for those Apple Computers.
      And my final thought, lately there has been huge amounts of claims that have been deferred or denied, and these claims are then marked complete allowing the claims total to appear to be less. We need to make sure that these claims are not just being marked denied for just appearance, lets all put our parties aside lets put hatred in the trash can and stand together as Americans and make these people do their jobs the right way GOD BLESS YOU ALL.

  10. To Kevin E., on his short comment of “Thank you very much Lawrence Kelly, III”, does that mean you really thank him, or you are being sarcastic, because if we don’t clarify that someone really could be offended, and since humor cannot be detected easily especially when it is gallows humor, and messed up ptsd/tbi vets are involved, we really need to just stick to the facts. actually, to be safe, we should only used canned phrases that we can choose from, then filter them through Dear Abby’s column to see if Julia Childs will agree they are socially appropriate. Maybe we can find Ann Landers and she can help figure this all out. But, it is best to err in the direction of caution, especially since what you think I met when I said what you said in quotes when you were quoting me quoting you and you started it all by being too serious and not thinking before you made a comment about my comment which was about your comment and it all started because of the comment by a hack from the VA who is trying to turn us all against each other and succeeding, but they have ptsd too, and tbi to boot, and they are just a plain old jerk too, then we have nothing but confusion and chaos, and, and … did I take my 5 o’clock sedatives? well, did i? wait, did that offend someone, hey, wait, it actually offended me, because i am beside myself with anger about what the VA has done with their spin games every since Shinseki bailed out and got his secret job running the VA as a CEO consultant who can get by with murder easier than he did when he was officially the Secretary. no, ben, the VA is not an insurance company, and it never was, not even when it was called the War Insurance Board a hundred years ago, that was a distraction too. What it really started out as and still is and always will be is a big gigantic slush fund for sneaky projects like working on obama care instead of anything to do with vets, like the informant whistleblowers just testified to Congress this week. remember, this is a joke, about a joke, that started out as a serious question, that was answered by a joke, and that joke was joked about but angered someone or offended someone, but dammmmm! look up the frickin’ definition of ptsd and the symptoms, which include being a complete social idiot, and accept the fact that people will get pissed or offended or whatever, or just close this dammm disabled vets website down and everyone just stop making comments. okay, wait, Julia Childs is on the phone, back from the dead, ready to straighten all of this out with her also back from the dead friend Ann Landers… When God was handing out humor she thought he said tumor and then everyone said, no thanks, i don’t want any. anyone who read this whole comment about comments should have their head examined, by the VA, but get ready to die while waiting on their secret waiting list for that exam.

  11. Thank you Ben for another insightful article. I have to constantly remind my fellow veterans that the individuals we are dealing with at the Dept. Of VA ,are mortals and the things they create or facilitate are bound to fail, most of them think they are gods but are “not” and that is the deception and delusions that these people have played on the American people for centuries.
    The Dept.of Defense was once called The Dept. Of War and war is and will always be a racket and hence is the Bureau of War Insurance, and there is the juxtaposition of our future.

  12. Excellent article. The writing pad issue is overblown. I made similar comments in writing but they were just what crossed my mind in that moment.

    • Eric, there is a difference between right and wrong, and your comment evades that fact. If someone writes what just crossed their mind and leaves it laying around, maybe even on purpose for their adversary to find, they have to take responsibility for it, and all the factors involved, It was a deliberate defiance of Congressional investigators, and defiance of veterans and all Americans, because Congress represents all of us. If someone even jokes about causing harm to anyone or anything before, during or after boarding an airliner they are immediately arrested as a terrorist threat. If you leave a note on the same subject laying in the airliner’s bathroom or airport bathroom, expect the same treatment of immediate arrest. The VA does not need defenders. They will destroy your life in a heart beat whether you are a vet, a VA worker defending them, or whoever or whatever you are, to further their horrendously corrupt institution that has become nothing more than a federal jobs program, mixed with an insurance denial contractor, staffed by mostly incompetent staff from the top down. They were caught last week as testified to Congress by another whistleblower that they were ordered to work on the Obama Care program and the ACA instead of VA projects, and that is misappropriation of funds right there. ACA is the new model for the VA and we have to stop both at all costs, within reason, in a legal and civil manner. Please re-evaluate the intent and impact of even thinking the thoughts behind the note that was left in the bathroom for Congressional investigators to find. There are lots of bridges for sale around the US but I would not suggest that you spend your money buying one.

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