I am pleased to let you all know I recently opened up a new practice area for my law firm to veterans employed as VA Vocational Rehabilitation Counselors who are experiencing discrimination or harassment on the job.

This has been a sharp learning curve as it opens the door to new legal tools such as discovery and depositions, which gives more access than we get as VA accredited attorneys representing veterans for benefits.

In short, I now help veterans get their economic opportunity benefits from Voc Rehab as well as veterans being harassed or discriminated against by their bosses.

As far as I know, I am the only attorney who was educated through the VA Vocational Rehabilitation process who wrote a book about Voc Rehab benefits and is now representing disabled veterans pursuing their employee rights against the agency.

I wanted to bring this up now because many of you have asked, recently, what I have been working on this summer behind the scenes of this website and my other work with the press.

New Summer Stuff

Well, we had a new baby girl in May. And, I also ramped up the new legal practice area. Double and, I am pulling in some support staff to help with my workload, finally.

Very exciting on all fronts, and the process is illuminating.

We are learning a lot about how the agency operates when veterans need reasonable accommodations as Vocational Rehabilitation Counselors. Despite being trained to provide veterans assistance in securing reasonable accommodations from their employers, VA seems to hold a double standard for their own employees.

Across the board, whistleblowers report the agency is incompetent when processing reasonable accommodation requests. I guess that might not be surprising, in itself, except that Vocational Rehabilitation has a long way to go when it comes to providing those accommodations. Often, employees are forced to pay for their own accommodations to avoid retaliation or reprisal.

Sad.

My goal in working to help veterans expand their economic opportunity has allowed the opportunity to depose senior leadership at VA regional offices, which is not an option when helping veterans with benefits appeals.

Long story longer, I just got home after a successful adventure out west. We look forward to providing any VA employees struggling with hostile supervisors with the legal help they need to protect their rights.

The picture above is of me (right) and my buddy and fellow attorney Brian Lewis at the Denver VA Regional Office this week following depositions.

New Employee Rights Guide

Since 2012, I have been working on a guide for employees to help fight back against harassment. My research into finishing that book led me to open up the new practice area. The book itself has been finished for a bit, and I am working out the final edits before putting it online for interested readers to check out.

Until then, I plan to explore many ideas and concepts with you including discrimination, reasonable accommodations, and delegations of authority.

Stay informed on VA news, scandals and benefits. Get our daily newsletter via email.

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71 COMMENTS

  1. Ben, what’s the future outlook in more Attorneys being available to sue VA for malpractice? Would there be a difference if VA was removed from under Tort Law? Just asking, tired of researching things when my health is suffering due to what I believe to be malpractice.

    Please explain.

  2. In case I didn’t do so previously …congrats on the baby girl. Oh oh, beware of public schooling and Marx-Fem indoctrination. I shudder to think about raising kids in this present culture of corruption and sick society.

    First off, things will NOT be changed in Indiana, for sure. I can’t be the social butterfly I used to be and don’t know if there are vets working for the local VR or are VRCs. If so they will be forced to play the game, or not work locally. I encountered a couple of those “feminist” and a foreigner for VR. Didn’t get much but plenty of hassles and run around. Local cliques and insiders got it all. I also would have to run across campus, no decent parking even with disable permits and such to hit classes on time in just minutes, impossible. Plus had to do their requirements for a sports program, no excuses… impossible… circa 1980s. Aid from any VA Voc Rehab… zero. Go use the state’s or town’s Voc Rehab people.

    Who, how connected, etc., are they to even get such positions in the first place? Given the amount of nepotism allowed or the choice picks for such employment especially in Indiana. It’s beyond obvious the lack of news, transparency, how little truth is allowed here. No questions allowed.

    Again it comes back to corruption, local politics, and censoring. Hard censoring, state approved. While some may be out to protect some rights locally there would be other forms of retaliation and with them not being able to fit in with the VA herd, ruling mafias, the fascist group think, student unions, or the Greek societies, ruling colleges that are bold enough to proclaim their “influence” on communities and state, to our lying fake media. “The VA and medical colleges control it all,” plus the added ruling list given then. A VA employee to speak up here? I seriously doubt those in your own profession, some agency or courts would support anything that would “illuminate” anything or much. Proof? Me. More proof? The kind of news, lack of news/reports or amount we are allowed to know. What is allowed for “public consumption” which isn’t much especially on a local level or concerning college town activities, benefits, ‘rights,’ and agencies, VA regional offices. VA regional… has shown how they are and how futile it is to use any politicians in the state to go over their corrupted lying heads.

  3. Just a little confused.

    In “VA speak” it sounds like you are saying adios.

    That your practice is chasing fatter wallets and is now moving in to cover the role of the diminished AFGE for VA employees.

    • Most non-managers who are fired lack an income and have no more “fatter wallets” than disabled veterans fighting for benefits.

      • Ben,

        You have done a ton of work for Veterans and have had some very amazing successes where many have failed. Thank you for all that you have done.

        That said, please do not insult my intelligence or mock my comment. You stated in today’s post you are now representing:

        “who are experiencing discrimination or harassment on the job”

        “as well as veterans being harassed or discriminated against by their bosses”

        “is now representing disabled veterans pursuing their employee rights against the agency”

        “We look forward to providing any VA employees struggling with hostile supervisors with the legal help they need to protect their rights”

        **No where in that list do you mention anything about VA employees who have been wrongfully terminated.**

        Basically, from your list of those you are now representing you are claiming to do everything a AFGE attorney would claim they do.

        Other then the fact that in your post you are not claiming to represent anyone who has been wrongfully terminated. Other than that I would have to agree with you that sometimes people who have been fired sometimes have a wallet as thin as a disabled Veteran who has not been able to work for years due to his disability. But of course the fired ones can just go get another job.

  4. This should keep you pretty busy. This will let you know how bad retaliation is and who’s involved.

    This will be a window and the more you see. Time’s that by 10.
    It would be nice to push for attorneys to be allowed to assist the veteran’s file and represent them from the onset of their deserved disability claims.

  5. Missouri News: Former Company Owner, Jeffrey K. Wilson, Sentenced for $13.7 Million ‘Rent-A-Vet’ Scheme
    08/24/2018 Marty Smith

    “KANSAS CITY, MO – A former operator of a local construction company, Patriot Company, Inc., was sentenced in federal court today for his role in a “rent-a-vet” scheme to fraudulently obtain more than $13.7 million in federal contracts.

    Jeffrey K. Wilson, 53, of the Village of Loch Lloyd in Belton, Missouri, was sentenced by U.S. District Judge Howard F. Sachs to 18 months in federal prison without parole. Under the terms of his plea agreement, Wilson has also consented to the federal civil forfeiture of approximately $2.1 million.

    On Jan. 31, 2018, Wilson pleaded guilty to one count of government program fraud. Co-defendant Paul R. Salavitch, 57, of Kansas City, Mo., pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor charge of making a false writing and awaits sentencing.

    Wilson, who is not a veteran, managed the day-to-day operations and the long-term decision making of Patriot Company from September 2005 to January 2014. Wilson and Salavitch falsely certified that Salavitch, who is a service-disabled veteran, was involved in the day-to-day operations of Patriot Company. Salavitch’s purported active management qualified Patriot Company to obtain set-aside contracts to which it was not entitled.

    Wilson admitted he used Salavitch’s veteran and service-disabled veteran status in a “rent-a-vet” scheme to obtain 20 government contracts for which Patriot Company received more than $13.7 million. As a result of the fraud scheme, legitimate veteran-owned-and-run businesses were not awarded these contracts. In one instance, according to court documents, Wilson brazenly challenged the government’s award of a set-aside contract to a service-disabled veteran bidder and Patriot Company fraudulently obtained that contract.

    Wilson’s plea agreement cites 20 contracts with the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs and the U.S. Army, which were fraudulently obtained by Wilson, Salavitch and Patriot Company. The contracts, which ranged as high as $4.3 million, included construction projects in Missouri, South Dakota, Texas, Nebraska, Oklahoma, Michigan, Indiana, Tennessee, Iowa, Illinois and North Dakota.

    In September 2013, the Veterans Administration conducted an unannounced site visit of Patriot Company. The site inspector discovered that Salavitch was working 40 miles away at his full-time job as a federal employee with the Department of Defense in Leavenworth, Kan.”

    Full Article At: “https://www.stl.news/missouri-news-former-company-owner-jeffrey-k-wilson-sentenced-for-13-7-million-rent-a-vet-scheme/159934/”

  6. Great, Benjamin! Maybe this will also help locate all those loud whistling sucking noises coming from the VA’s abuse of so-called Whistle-blower Protection Act…or whatever flavor of cash grab it was called last time?

    (that whistling sound is also the VA’s theme song to their WHack-A-Mole game (WHAM).

  7. Veterans service officer school wraps up
    By Dave Askins, August 23, 2018

    “Jones wanted to be in Pierre by the time the National Association of County Veterans Service Officers (NACVSO) accreditation training was held at the Ramkota Hotel this week. On Tuesday Jones and Gus posed for photos by a bus parked in front of the hotel.

    Inside the Ramkota, around 120 veterans service officers were attending a week-long school, culminating in a 100-question multiple choice test on Friday. Those who received a score of 70 or higher qualified for national accreditation.

    That gives them the authority to file claims on behalf of veterans for health, pension or education benefits from national level organizations like the American Legion or the VFW, according to Audry Ricketts, the public information officer for the SD Dept. of Veterans Affairs.”

    Full Article At: “https://www.capjournal.com/news/veterans-service-officer-school-wraps-up/article_e0d870b0-a74d-11e8-8c0c-ef635444d7e1.html”

    **********************

    WOW, a whole week of training and a score of 70, or above, on a 100 question test to qualify for national accreditation. That gives them the authority to file claims on behalf of veterans for health, pension or education benefits from national level organizations like the American Legion or the VFW.

    Such high standards, Not!

    • I know this is off base but this line in the article caused a chuckle.

      “The state statue also requires counties to give the officer logistical support.”

      I’m picturing some giant granite statue flapping it’s lips and giving orders. Maybe we could call it the Statute Statue

  8. Veterans Affairs to offer free yoga classes for vets
    THOMAS NELSON, Aug 22, 2018

    “WATERLOO — The Black Hawk Veterans Affairs office will offer free yoga lessons starting Sept. 4.

    Classes will be from noon to 1 p.m. on Tuesdays and Thursdays in the chapel of the Pinecrest Office Building, 1407 Independence Ave. It is free to veterans and their spouses, and anyone who works with veterans.”

    Full Article At: “https://wcfcourier.com/news/local/veterans-affairs-to-offer-free-yoga-classes-for-vets/article_67a2da92-fa6f-5923-9a83-cb948ec1d98a.html”

    ***************************

    Does anyone truly believe that the yoga class is for Veterans? Personally, it is more likely just another way to spend money meant to help Veterans to cover the cost of the yoga classes for the employees at the Black Hawk Veterans Affairs office.

    Remember it says, “It is free to veterans and their spouses, and anyone who works with veterans”. Also have to wonder which office managers son or daughter is teaching the classes. No doubt for a premium rate at the expense of Veterans.

    • Black Hawk VA reaches out to Waterloo minorities
      THOMAS NELSON

      “WATERLOO — The Black Hawk Veterans Affairs Office is making more of an effort to reach out to minorities in the community.”

      “The Black Hawk VA hosts a number of events to bring in veterans, including a weekly cookout.”

      Full Article At: “https://wcfcourier.com/news/local/black-hawk-va-reaches-out-to-waterloo-minorities/article_d2aa45f2-98ac-520f-acd3-b6b47685ea19.html”

      ***********************

      With the free Yoga days and the free weekly office picnics. Sounds like a great place to work.
      But wonder who is paying for all the fun?

  9. When you’re in the downward dog pose. You’ll be asked to envision the sound of one VISN screwing.

  10. “https://www.yahoo.com/news/republican-senator-mccain-discontinue-medical-treatment-family-151844089.html”

    Thank god, shouldn’t be long now.

      • One less vote in the Senate by a scumbag that does nothing for veterans. As it stands now, in reality, only 99 Senators vote!

        Fixed that for ya 😉

        I have a feeling you’re absolutely going to hate the Nov midterm outcomes. Wanna wager a buck?

      • Sorry but not quite true Elf. McCain already cooked up a deal with the Governor of Arizona to appoint his wife Cindy McCain to his current seat in the Senate.

        That is why he refused to give up his seat even after he was to ill to represent the people of Arizona. So his wife could be appointed to the seat after he dies.

    • I couldn’t respond to your response to my comment about not feeling too bad down below but I agree completely

  11. “I now help veterans get their economic opportunity benefits from Voc Rehab as well as veterans being harassed or discriminated against by their bosses.” Wonderful! If only you’d been willing and able to help a disabled veteran (me) who was discriminated against by a VA supervisor and who contacted you a couple years back. However, I wasn’t employed with the Voc Rehab program and I suppose “Krause [only] Fights For Veterans Employed As Vocational Rehabilitation Counselors.” I presume when the Agency denied my request for reasonable accommodation requests on numerous occasions it didn’t quite meet the standard of a “need reasonable [for] accommodations as Vocational Rehabilitation Counselors,” because I was employed in a separate VA program.

    Perhaps the “VA seems to hold a double standard for their own employees,” just as a legal representative holds double standards concerning disabled veterans. Those who work in Voc Rehab are worthy of being represented and those who aren’t, don’t? I suppose the “recognition and understanding of the difference between one thing and another” (Oxford Dictionary) element of discrimination is acceptable as long as one is employed by Voc Rehab, not the Caregiver Support Program.

    “Across the board, whistleblowers report the agency is incompetent when processing reasonable accommodation requests.” Correct. That is why I contacted you for legal assistance, yet I was denied. “Sad.”

    “We look forward to providing any VA employees struggling with hostile supervisors with the legal help they need to protect their rights.” Excellent! I suspect distressed veterans who are employed by the Agency and who maintain service-connected disabilities will no longer receive the passive response, “This is not the kind of case I would handle at this time,” and, “Take care, Ben.”

    • Don’t feel bad.

      I’ve been calling attorneys for two days trying to find one that will help me get my benefits from the VA since they keep stealing them.

      Not one has time to help a disabled, service connected veteran that was injured in action. Even if there is a fat piece of cake in it for them.

      It’s taught me two things:

      1. Dealing with attorneys almost makes me as suicidal as dealing with the VA

      2. Attorneys really are heartless vampires

      • Don’t feel bad.

        At this point in my case I get the feeling that I know more about what’s going on in the process than my attorney. I had to call the VA myself and bitch about the shit C&P exam I got. Apparently I can get a director level review of my exam for the asking. Wish to fuck my attorney knew that. Her response “Huh. well that’s interesting.” No fucking shit that’s interesting. Attorneys are rapidly approaching the point where they are going to be added to my list of people to shoot when the revolution happens.

        It seems to me that people who signed up to work for the VA made their bed. The only thing a “good VA employee” is doing is standing in the way of getting the work done that needs to be done in order to get a working system in place that can deal with veterans correctly. Perhaps if all the “good va employees” found work elsewhere the sheer horror that is the VA would stand out even more. It makes no sense to be a whistleblower in the federal government nothing ever gets done. It makes even less sense to represent a whistleblower on the federal level, unless you’re getting paid. Talk about tilting at windmills…

      • @DisabledForgottenOIFveteran
        Thank you for the encouraging words. As frustrating as maneuvering bureaucratic systems and seeking out legal assistance is, that first lesson you learned can be avoided. Hang in there.

      • @WyldeChylde
        I’m uncertain as to whether your message was directed to @DisabledForgottenOIFveteran or to me. Still, I will comment on the second paragraph you submitted. I didn’t choose a “bed” by selecting the VA as an employer. I saw a need among the population I was a part of and I filled it.

        It’s easy to sit behind a keyboard and chastise others, complain about an institution, and perform no actions consistent with advocacy for lasting and effective change. I didn’t want to be the critic General David M. Shoup spoke of in his quote about those who criticize others who actually attempt things. Nonetheless, payment for an attorney who would’ve represented my case would have been in the form of attorney’s fees aside from the pecuniary and non-pecuniary compensatory damages I was seeking.

      • @Just Passing
        It was actually directed at OIFvet. But if you wish to have the conversation then, sure, it can happen.

        Yes you did make your bed when you chose to go work for a corrupt agency. Ignorance of the fact is no excuse because you continued employment in the face of corruption. You can argue semantics if you wish but the bottom line is you drew a paycheck from a corrupt organization.

        You’re absolutely right it is easy to sit behind a keyboard and chastise others. You know what else is equally as easy to do? Sitting behind a keyboard and blatantly lying to a claimants face to save the government a buck. Which one is more unconscionable Sir?

        I’ve got no sympathy for you. At this point the only thing a “good va employee” does is get in the way of the work that needs to be done.

      • @WyldeChylde
        I’m open for conversation as long as we can divert from logical fallacy.

        Using your logic, I chose to draw a “paycheck from a corrupt organization.” If you’re a veteran, one may argue that by having drawn a paycheck from the Department of Defense you, too, worked with and for corruption. As well, if you receive VA compensation you, too, receive a paycheck from the Agency of corruption. If you aren’t a veteran though live in the United States (U.S.), one could make the argument that you live in a nation in which corruption exists. If you don’t live in the U.S., I suspect the nation in which you live is likely corrupt in some aspect. This form of circular reasoning can lead nowhere other than in circles.

        I don’t need your sympathy, as I didn’t ask for it. Being that I don’t have it, we’re back to the circular nature of your manner of communicating. If you truly believe that “good” employees get in the “way of the work that needs to be done,” it remains unclear what work you’re insinuating needs to be done. Perhaps you mean complete destruction of the system, dismantlement of the VA. If so, there is no proof of a VA employee who has a positive influence functioning as the point at which privatization occurs. Essentially, your stance is dizzying.

      • @Passing

        Believe me I’d love nothing more than to depart from logical fallacy. Unfortunately I am unable to as the VA can’t figure out how to adjudicate a claim correctly using both hands and a goddamned field manual. As a matter of fact I do live in the U.S. and have never left. Are you trying to say there is no corruption in the U.S.? Because if, that is your sincere belief, then we have nothing further to talk about. As for your attempt at deflection, sorry I sincerely believe you do in fact know exactly what I mean and if you don’t then at least others here do.

        Actually you did ask for sympathy. You asked for it from anybody who cared to read your post. Else why post?

        My stance is absolutely for the complete and total dismantling of the VA. It’s functions and obligations as well as it’s budget handed over to SSA and Medicare it is my firm belief that these two agencies could do a much more effective job at administering benefits and healthcare for vets as well as process new claimants in a more consistent, timely, and professional manner. I’m glad I could clarify that for you. As far as I’m concerned every last VA employee veteran or no from the position of SecVA on down to the janitor who started yesterday can find work in the private sector. Except, wait, most of them can’t cut it in the fucking private sector that’s why their at the VA. Zero accountability. Zero fucks given.

        Just out of curiosity how many of us did you fuck over before you suddenly grew a conscience? I have a feeling it only started being real when it started being you. Get fucked asshole.

      • @WyldeChylde
        I have no idea what the VA and your claim have to do with our conversation. That aside, I will answer your question (“Are you trying to say there is no corruption in the U.S.?”) with my own words previously directed to you—though with all caps for emphasis (“If you aren’t a veteran THOUGH LIVE IN THE UNITED STATES (U.S.), one could make the argument that YOU LIVE IN A NATION IN WHICH CORRUPTION EXISTS.”). I don’t know if you’re deliberately twisting my words or if you misunderstood me. I’ll err on the side of caution by presuming the latter.

        Concerning your statement (“I sincerely believe you do in fact know exactly what I mean and if you don’t then at least others here do.”) you assume incorrectly. Regarding a separate assertion and follow-up question (“Actually you did ask for sympathy. You asked for it from anybody who cared to read your post. Else why post?”), I’ll again say what I’ve already stated (“I don’t need your sympathy, as I didn’t ask for it.) and further expound by stating that I posted, because I wanted to. If you believe you’re owed an answer beyond that, you again assume incorrectly.

        Shenanigans aside, you actually clarified something you previously alluded to by stating, “My stance is absolutely for the complete and total dismantling of the VA.” This makes more sense as to why you’d claim, “The only thing a ‘good VA employee’ is doing is standing in the way of getting the work done that needs to be done in order to get a working system in place that can deal with veterans correctly.” Look at that, you could make a coherent point. Good on ya! Where this particular stance is of issue, there’s no point in arguing against someone’s entrenched ideology. You’ll believe as you believe.

        Because you posed another question (“Just out of curiosity how many of us did you fuck over before you suddenly grew a conscience?”), I will answer. I was in the position of a Caregiver Support Coordinator and my responsibility was to provide support to caregivers (it’s actually in the job title, you see). I therefore didn’t “fuck” anyone over. Rather, I provided quality care to those who were providing quality care.

        Being that it is more than clear that you aren’t truly interested in having meaningful dialogue, and rather you are engaging in your own form of misplaced rage and using ad hominem attacks (remember, I stated, “I’m open for conversation as long as we can divert from logical fallacy.), I’ve nothing more to contribute to this conversation. Using the logic of Ben Shapiro (summarized, of course), when someone makes a claim by attacking your character, don’t try to convince them otherwise. It’s a waste of time. Instead, just tell them they’re being a jerk, because they’re attempting to label you when they have no actual argument to make in the first place.

        (So yes, you can carry on replying to yourself. It’ll be precisely that…you talking to yourself.)

    • @Just Passing Through. I am not clear what you are complaining about. You sought services from someone who did not provide those services. I focus on Voc Rehab because I want to.

      Last I checked, this is America, and a person/business owner can work in whatever area they choose so long as they have the requisite training.

      • @Benjamin Krause
        If you aren’t sure what I was addressing then perhaps we view the element of prejudice differently. If your brand of prejudice relates to representation for only disabled veteran VA employees who work in Voc Rehab, completely ignoring other disabled veterans, such is your choice. It is not, however, beyond the scope of critical analysis.

        Your citation of patriotism/nationalism in the form of reminding me in what country we live is unnecessary, as we both served this nation and such a matter was referenced nowhere in my original statement. Deflection aside, the “recognition and understanding of the difference between one thing and another’ (Oxford Dictionary) element of discrimination is acceptable” as long as you’re comfortable in exercising the prejudice you so vehemently defend. At any rate, I do find it interesting to learn that your advocacy for veterans is hampered by your limited focus. Now I know.

        Also, I recognize your ability to post your response in duplicate. Though wholly unnecessary, let no one infringe your right to do so. ‘Merica!

      • Just so we are clear, I have no idea who you are since you go by a pseudonym. I am a solo practitioner and cannot help everyone who comes to me for help. Law of numbers.

      • @Benjamin Krause
        We’re as clear as crystal. The element of probability theory you describe is understood. You run a blog that posits you advocate for veterans. You’re also an attorney who claims to represent veterans. You declined to represent me when I contacted you a couple years ago. Now, citing the law of large numbers and shifting your stance (i.e., “I focus on Voc Rehab because I want to”), you’re defending the fact that when a disabled veteran whose employment with the VA was terminated—despite the fact that the VA denied me reasonable accommodation and exercised open discrimination against me—I wasn’t worthy of your representation and advocacy…or…you simply couldn’t represent me due to your workload. Now in the current post you’re broadcasting your ability to represent disabled veterans with cases similar to mine, though only those employed in Voc Rehab. We’re as clear as crystal.

  12. Congrats Ben! As a vet who works at the VA, we desperately need an experienced advocate like yourself. I wish you well in your new endeavor

  13. @Just Passing Through. I am not clear what you are complaining about. You sought services from someone who did not provide those services. I focus on Voc Rehab because I want to.

    Last I checked, this is America, and a person/business owner can work in whatever area they choose so long as they have the requisite training.

    • Excellent response.

      May I please also have a snarky comment about why the rest of us get turned away?

      The condescension works wonders for my hemorrhoids.

      • @DisabledForgottenOIFveteran
        I’m glad I wasn’t the only one who saw the curtain pulled back with Ben fully exposed. I truly hope you are able to find legal representation soon. Hang in there.

      • @Krause

        I reserve the right to pull the curtain back on the wizard of oz, Dorothy.

        Now toss me another hit of that cotton candy Hopium, please.

      • @OIF

        I have 2 questions.

        1. Does it taste like freedom?

        2. Is it just as addictive as it’s counterpart?

  14. Perhaps someone can explain to me why I am unworthy of help.

    I was stationed at JBB Balad for awhile and responsible for assisting the 101st and chair force security forces with fob security while i was in the first Cav. I was also exposed to the toxic burn pits.

    On the bus routes to the office we would drive by the pits and through the plumes of smoke that filled the bus. We started bringing our gas masks, but that was banned in short order.

    I guess my burn pit exposure is not important. I’ll be seeing a few people in hell I guess.

    Price you pay to be combat arms in the cav:

    Crippling physical injuries
    Tbi from blowing shit up with c4
    Brain case rattled from firing howitzer (self propelled kind with a cabin)
    Toxic exposure
    Endless denials
    Et tu, brute? I cried aloud as the swords pierced my back from behind…

    • I was also combat arms as a 13B Paladin driver. I have been trying to track down documentation relating to TBI caused from howitzer recoil. Got anything on that?

      • Not much more than a migraine.

        I was the #1 man. You and I both know that no study on the matter will ever be conducted.

        All I remember before I started pulling the string and sending 155s off to never never land was they warned us not to be outside the paladin while it was firing because it could be fatal.

        If it’s adverse to your health to be around a 155 shucking rounds it makes one wonder what it does to the poor bravos in the belley of the beast.

        Hail oh hail artillery, king of battle follow me!

        Now let’s go be substitute infantry in the sandbox.

      • At least no study the VA won’t fight tooth and nail to bury. I know tinnitus is presumptive for us Bangers can you imagine TBI as presumptive for Artillery??? The VA AND the DoD would have a complete and utter shitfit.

        I can’t imagine why it would be deadly to fire outside the gun. I trained on and fired plenty of 155 from 198’s and I recall plenty of times firing outside the gun especially when we put copperheads in the air. As a driver I know that gun rocks something fierce especially when your firing the big red bags 😀 😀 😀 It’s almost like a horse that’s about to rear up on you. I wish there was a way to bottle the smell of freshly fired paladin. I’d buy it buy the pallet. 😀 😀 😀

        Oh hail oh hail oh Infantry, Queen of Battle followed me.

        I watched a film, I read a book. King of Battles’ what I took.

        “I love Fisters. They only ever call for fire on the wrong grid once…”

  15. Congrats Mr. Krause, wishing you and your close ones the best…

    And yes, sad that suing the VA is the only way to get them to do the job they are getting paid to do

  16. @Wylde Chylde

    Pass me the cologne bottle of that eau de artillery powder.

    Red bag, please!

    Tbi and tinnitus should be presumptive for bangers. But your rounds are on target: it would be wholly denied.

    Irritable bowel syndrome is a presumptive disease that service in southeast and west Asia should automatically give you 10% but good luck with that, you’ll just get aids or hepatitis from a dirty butt cam on top of a denial for what according to the VA’s own website should be yours for the taking if you served on the line.

    Thanks uncle Sam, the endless rape is so pleasurable.

  17. You guys crack me up. So many whiners and angry men here. Ben has been good to us all for years and I’m pretty sure posting articles and exposing issues within VA doesnt pay his mortgage or feed his family. Lawyers choose what practice they wish to follow. The commentary here doesnt choose for him. Get over it and let the man follow his heart. I’m sure they’ll be Service Connected Vets flooding in that are not Voc Rehab employees. Perhaps he will start taking them on too. Who knows. Just get over yourselves and your issues. There are thousands more Vets out here that have no idea this site exists. If you’re THAT unhappy with Ben’s choice. Pack your trash and dont let the keyboard hit you in the ass! OOHRAH BEN !!

    • A shot from the peanut gallery. No doubt a VA employee!

      While this sites is named Disabled Veterans dot Org, which clearly doesn’t represent it’s new direction. There are many of us who have been hear for years and I can assure you we will be vocal about Ben selling out and keeping the name.

      I can guaranty the numbers for the site will continue to drop and any more of the VA fluff pieces trying to steer an issue which have started showing up here will be fully discredited.

      While Ben certainly has the right to choose the direction of his practice he certainly does not have the right to label disabled Veterans as supporting him by using the name.

      As for a little piss ant like NotMe it is clear you are against Veterans by your statement.

      • Honestly I’m not really sure why I come here. Most of the stories aren’t all that relevant to me anyways. And all it tends to do is fire me up. Add in the usual assortments of retards and rejects and it just tends to not become worth it to come here anymore. I dunno, at this point I’m thinking about just putting up my own site with a forum, like I’ve urged Ben to do time and time again.

      • LMFAO. You are hands down the biggest cheerleader here! Whine on you crazy diamond.
        Seymour Klearly of what? – reposting everything found on the web? Regurgitating that shit klearly makes you appear THAT much infantile. We could go back n forth for days insulting one another but I have better things to do than rant here all day.
        And FWIW- I’m a very happy 100% SC Vet who’s NOT had any issues w VA. Just come straight to your commentary for a laugh.
        Get-A-Life Seymour!
        Toolbag.

        * Shut this crap down Ben. Bitching serves no purpose. Best wishes in the ne gig too!

      • NUTME. Ahem. “Just get over yourselves and your issues.” ?

        Glad you’re happy happy but don’t seem to give a shit about others or those dying or suffering daily. Those like you are a huge part of the problem, not any change or helping others, certainly far far from rare sadly. Then want to silence others? You another AFGE & VA cheerleader? Sounds it. Or just playing troll. Hell, step up be bold with your shit and use a real name instead of hiding behind a screen playing keyboard commando spouting VA goody goody crap. What do you do to spread some info not easily found online, or to help others besides brag about having it all, etc? Talk about infantile and trolling or attacking vets actually trying to do something.

      • Yep!

        “notme” is a VA employee so his comment is truly just another shot from the peanut gallery.

  18. Good Job, Ben

    As a former VA veteran disabled employee, who was subject to an attempted illegal constructive discharge, ultimately settled, I can appreciate the need for legal counsel who is aware of the potential for harassment that can be perpetrated.

    A recommendation: expand the practice to the VHA side of the agency also. The cases on point are extensive.

    The best to you.

    • Say Sgt. Evans,

      Were you a part of the investigation of Michael Evans. You know the AFGE Vice president at Wilkes Barre, where you did work as a police official, that was convicted of stealing more than $50 k of union money?

      • Also if you don’t mind what is your disability for? Hang Nail? Back Trouble from sitting on too fat of wallet?

  19. From an ad on “Federal News.” AFGE, etc.
    “https://www.predictiveanalyticsworld.com/gov/2018/?utm_source=FederalNewsRadio&utm_medium=Ads&utm_campaign=Mediapartner”

    “Predictive Analytics World Government.”

    What a interesting large DC convention that is, will be! Would love to be a fly on the wall on this one. Fed unions, Proctor and Gamble, USAA, NIKE, Google, etc. Damn what a safe secure network of ‘analytics,’ crystal ball gazing and info gathering/sharing this sounds like. Here comes the AI staff from around the globe to help usher in …. something.

  20. Veterans can now file class-action lawsuits against VA
    By: Leo Shane III, Military Times   5 hours ago

    WASHINGTON — A federal court ruling this week opened the possibility for veterans to file suit against the Department of Veterans Affairs as a class rather than individuals, a move that advocates say could dramatically shift how legal cases against the bureaucracy are handled.

    The ruling, Monk v. Wilkie, came from the U.S. Court of Veterans Appeals. The eight-justice panel ultimately ruled against the plaintiff’s claim that their case should proceed as a class-action suit, arguing it failed to meet previously established standards for such legal consideration.

    But they did say that in “appropriate cases” in the future, class-action lawsuits would be entertained.

    “This is a watershed decision, and its importance should not be diminished merely because the court declined to certify this proposed class,” Chief Judge Robert Davis wrote in the opinion. “On the contrary, the court’s decision will shape our jurisprudence for years to come and, I hope, bring about positive change for our nation’s veterans.””

    “Fellow appeals court Judge Michael Allen said the decision “has been decades in coming and holds great promise as a means to address systemic problems in the VA system.””

    In private lawsuits, individuals must prove specific harm or damage to their personal situation in order to win judgment. But in class-action lawsuits, plaintiffs can show illegal or harmful activity against a larger group, bringing with it different standards for correction.

    Officials with the Veterans Legal Services Clinic at Yale Law School, which brought the suit on behalf of Vietnam veteran Conley Monk Jr., praised the decision as a historic step forward.

    “(Allowing class-action suits) will allow our nation’s veterans to unite in fighting for prompt answers to their disability benefits claims,” said clinic law student Catherine McCarthy said in a statement. “The VA’s delays are intolerable, and we hope the court will exercise its class action authority to hold the agency to account.”

    Whether future cases will have an easier time establishing an eligible class remains to be seen. In this case, the panel of judges rejected Monk’s claim that all veterans facing lengthy wait times for benefits appeals cases should be able to collectively sue the department to force a quicker response.

    But the new legal avenue could open the possibility of groups of veterans with the same illness banding together to force VA to respond, or require policy changes based on problems a similar group has reported in navigating VA systems. Specific damages awards are not covered in the new ruling.”

    Full Article At: “https://www.militarytimes.com/news/2018/08/24/court-ruling-allows-class-action-lawsuits-against-va/”

    *****************

    Anybody know of any good Veterans rights attorneys who represent Veterans??

  21. VA Cerner EHR Project CHIO Genevieve Morris resigns

    “After just one month on the job, the Morris reportedly stepped down as VA leadership “intends to take the EHR modernization effort in a different direction than we were headed.””

    By Jessica DavisAugust 24, 2018, 12:54 PM

    “Genevieve Morris, chief health information officer of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs’ Office of Electronic Health Record Modernization stepped down from her role this morning, just one month after moving into the position, a VA spokesperson confirmed to Healthcare IT News.

    Morris was on detail from the Department of Health and Human Services. Her intended plans have not been announced.

    In her resignation email to both departments, obtained by Politico, Morris cited VA leadership as the reason for her departure: “Over the last few weeks, it has become clear to me that VA’s leadership intends to take the EHR modernization effort in a different direction than we were headed.”

    John Windom will take over as acting CHIO for OEHRM. Windom is a recently retired Navy captain, who help led the Department of Defense EHR modernization project and the VA negotiations with Cerner over the last year.”

    Full Article At: “https://www.healthcareitnews.com/news/va-cerner-ehr-project-chio-genevieve-morris-resigns”

    ********************

    Gee, I guess that there is now a new direction on the Cerner Contract. Does that mean that Cerner is not going to just take the money and run or does it mean that is the new game plan?

  22. VA Stopped Publishing Breach Reports About Vets’ Data for Nine Months
    By Joseph Marks, Nextgov, August 24, 2018 03:21 PM

    “For roughly nine months this year, the Veterans Affairs Department stopped posting online quarterly reports that detail information security breaches affecting veterans.

    The department continued to share the quarterly reports with Congress during this period, as it is required to do under the 2006 Veterans Benefits, Healthcare, and Information Technology Act, according to a spokeswoman for the Senate Veterans’ Affairs Committee.

    The department failed, however, to post the reports online as had been common practice going back to 2010.”

    “The number of notification letters rose from 584 during the first quarter of 2018 to 3,596 during the second quarter and dropped to 929 during the third quarter, according to the reports. The number of credit protection letters rose from 1,059 during the first quarter to 1,712 during the second and to 2,566 during the third.”

    Full Article At: “https://www.nextgov.com/cybersecurity/2018/08/va-stopped-publishing-breach-reports-about-vets-data-nine-months/150809/”

  23. “North Bay Man Sentenced For Stealing Funds Intended For Homeless Veterans”
    August 24, 2018 at 11:13 am

    “SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF) — A former case worker at an East Bay nonprofit organization has been sentenced in U.S. District Court to one year in prison for stealing $26,300 in federal funds intended to aid homeless veterans with short-term housing.

    William Andrews, 50, of Windsor, was sentenced by U.S. District Judge James Donato in San Francisco on Tuesday. Donato also ordered him to pay the government $26,300 in restitution.

    Andrews pleaded guilty before Donato on April 25 to one count of theft of U.S. government property and acknowledged stealing a total of $26,300 in 2016.

    Andrews formerly worked with the Oakland-based East Bay Community Recovery Project, which provides substance abuse treatment and services. Its services included helping homeless veterans obtain grants from the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs for short-term rental housing.

    Prosecutors said in a sentencing document that Andrews used stolen identities of homeless veterans to funnel grants in their names to his own landlord to pay his own rent.

    According to the prosecution document, Andrews used the identities of two veterans for a period of months. The nonprofit group discovered the fraud during an audit when Andrews tried to use the identity of a third homeless veteran.

    As part of the plea bargain, prosecutors dropped a second charge of aggravated identity theft, which would have carried a mandatory two-year sentence upon conviction.”

    Full Article At: “https://sanfrancisco.cbslocal.com/2018/08/24/funds-stolen-homeless-veterans/”

    ************

  24. Still Seeking Answers
    Eight missed cases found among 7,482, VA says
    Doug Thompson, August 24th 2018

    “Pathologists from as far away as the Air Force Academy in Colorado have joined a review of 33,806 cases analyzed by a pathologist at the Veterans Health Care System of the Ozarks. At least 80 veterans and family members were updated at a town hall meeting on Aug. 20.

    So far, eight of the 7,482 cases reviewed show a missed diagnosis, according to interim medical center director Kelvin M. Parks. Parks presided at the meeting, the second such gathering since the initial June 18 news conference announcing the problem. At least one misdiagnosed veteran is believed to have died as a result of test results being misinterpreted, though, according to the initial announcement of the problem June 18.

    “In the Navy, if you come to work drunk, you’re gone,” veteran Buddy Boyd told Parks. “This guy got a second chance — it’s killed a veteran.” The pathologist involved in these cases had been allowed to go to a treatment program and return to work after a review of the initial incident found no missed diagnoses that time, according to the Veterans Department.

    Parks assured the audience there would be no repeat. “We do not have any doctors on their second chance now,” Parks said. He also told the audience the department couldn’t confirm or deny alcohol caused the impairment.

    “No one can work at this hospital without my signing off on it,” said Parks, who wasn’t interim director until after the pathologist in question was back at work after completing an impairment program.”

    Full Article At: “http://www.freeweekly.com/2018/08/24/still-seeking-answers/”

  25. Just a recap on the VA health Care System and just how deadly it can be.

    In recent years we have seen how the VA has hidden wrong doing by staff members and investigations turned to coverups. Even when clearly some staff members have gotten away with murder the VA still has covered for them.

    Here is a short list of some of the serial killers who have murdered Veterans at the VA. Although the list is aged it does not reflect the serial killers now employed by the VA or any of the murders that the VA has been able to hide from daylight.

    1. On November 22, 2005 convicted VA murder Paul Kornak was Sentenced in U.S. District Court in Albany, New York to 71 months in federal prison, just under 6 years. Kornak, (a fake VA doctor) pleaded guilty to a 41 count grand jury indictment including murder and negligent homicide for the deaths of 5 veterans in 2002 at VAMC Albany, NY. Kornak never completed medical school but was allowed to sit as, and sign his name as Dr. Kornak. He then falsified patient records of over 70 veteran inpatients, and entered veterans into a clinical trial for cancer treatment that they were not eligible to be in. The department of Veterans Affairs claims this was an isolated incident’. However, an Operation Firing For Effect (OFFE) investigation shows Paul Kornak is merely the one of the medical personnel to be caught murdering veterans within the VA medical system…
    See: “https://www.nytimes.com/2005/02/06/nyregion/06vets.html?ex=1265432400&en=8fe07dd58bf0215a&ei=5088”
    “http://timesunion.com/AspStories/story.asp?storyID=541652&category=REGIONOTHER&BCCode=HOME&newsdate=12/5/2006”

    2. In the latter part of 2002, a former nurse at a Veterans Affairs medical center in Miami Florida pleaded guilty to involuntary manslaughter in the death of a veteran patient. VA nurse James Mullins had been charged with second-degree murder in the death in February 2001 of Gary Baker, 53, who was injected with propofol, a sedative that can slow or stop respiration. Mullins was suspected in several other untimely deaths of veterans as well.
    See: “http://www.findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_qn4196/is_20011125/ai_n10735503”

    3. Also in 2002, VA nurse Richard A. Williams was charged with the murder of 10 veteran patients under his care at Truman Memorial Veterans Hospital in 1992. Forty-one patients under Williams’ care died that year.
    See: “http://www2.ljworld.com/news/2001/mar/27/nurse_sentenced_to/”

    4. In late 2000, Dr. Michael Swango (aka: Dr. Death), was suspected of administering lethal injections to as many as 35 people. Swango pled guilty to deliberately causing the deaths of 3 veterans at the VA Medical Center in Northport, New York. He was sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole. Swango was suspected of many more deaths of veterans.
    See: “http://www.karisable.com/skazswangp.htm”

    Collectively, Kornak, Mullins, Williams, Gilbert, and Swango may very well be responsible for over 350 deaths, most being sick veterans in VA hospitals. The real questions are; how many more serial killers remain undetected in the VA healthcare system? And how many isolated incidents’ have to occur before they are no longer considered isolated?

    In several of those murders investigations the VA made it extremely hard for investigators to gain access to a crime scene, evidence, patient medical records, logs, and staff personnel records. There is little doubt that valuable evidence disappeared or degraded because of the delays, and VA staff was less than willing to cooperate with FBI agents.

    Source: Serial Killers within VA Healthcare System
    By Jere Beery – December 10, 2006
    At: “https://www.veteranstodayarchives.com/2006/12/10/serial-killers-within-va-healthcare-system/”

    • Shine that beautiful truth upon me. I’ve been so fucked over by the va I am down with some class action pushback

      • Me too but in my locale and being in my situation both the VA and civvy care would have to be included in the big time cover-ups, networking, retaliation games, etc. Dealing with everything from HIPPA violations, Dis Act 1970 vios, basic human rights and civil rights vios, mafia styled thuggery/threats/harassment (even from a major civvy hospital and clinic) town/ state supported obviously, civvy care withholding med records, falsifying info like the VA, covering up for the VA and med workers/staff, big C rights and freedoms etc. Cough… plus the scamming, lack of ethics, other games. Plus the locals throwing up signs now that prohibit recording in areas of need for our own protection and proofs… hospitals, clinics, court house, cop station etc. Amazing how they all run like rat to cover their network’s asses and come out like cockroaches to attack people they see as a political enemy or trying to expose some things. “Rocking the boat.” Big difference between what some folks see on TV or believe and reality, real life events kept from “public consumption.”

        So considering a lawyer (unlike a huge law firm with roots) has some hoops to jump through too; to do such things like class actions, can’t practice across state border, maybe take a UBE test to do so, and on the circus goes. May probably get blocked somehow (local and town mafias/country clubbers/cliques) or run off so as not to upset the local apple cart of corruption and bruised egos… err apples. But I guess they can represent illegals (not vets or Americans) across the boarders since it’s federal and with time-in can play in DC. I may be wrong in ancient thinking, info told, or remembering.

        Fed law and vet issues crossing state lines? I dunno, guess not and gotta find some or one that practices in the many issues we may face. My issues would take a company to protect me and a battery of attorneys unafraid of our state’s and fed’s deep-state crap and shadow government. After all the machine, media, social media, politicians, health care industry, are getting away with censoring and doing what they all have done to me. And the silent ones out there too.

      • “http://www.thecommonsenseshow.com/the-aclu-opposes-social-media-censorship-threat-to-first-amendment/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=the-aclu-opposes-social-media-censorship-threat-to-first-amendment”

        The mighty ACLU and others will not touch or help with dealing in my state and town. Even they know about the state’s corrupt network and part of it.

  26. LMFAO..”NutMe?” Good one. Grow the hell up you losers. I’m ashamed to consider you fellow vets. I just puked in my own mouth after reading your trash.

    • Nutme, Good, choke and die. Can’t debate what you said or about your lame self-serving proclamations? You sound just like another well kept VA worker… that still doesn’t give a damn about anyone else. That is clear enough. Wont pass along a real name or info… that makes you a lying troll. How typical VA styled barf and rhetoric. You exposed yourself puss and have VA shit on your cheerleader face. Wear it. Oh, and have a good day. Must be related to the likes of John McCain too. Clear as glass.

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