Benjamin Krause Capitol Hill

Is New Record $240 Billion VA Budget Going To Help Veterans, Really?

In President Donald Trump’s fiscal 2021 plan, spending for the Department of Veterans Affairs is set to increase to $240 billion.

Two decades ago, the VA budget was only $40 billion. The agency has seen its budget now increase by five times. Five times. Five times. Five times.

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Let me say that again. The agency’s budget has increased five times since 2001.

This should be great news for America’s military veterans, right? Who would not want appropriate spending in support of America’s heroes? Certainly, this is what taxpayers want, right?

As a small business owner, would you not want a fivefold increase in your revenue?

I know that if my revenue for (by Armo Press) or Krause Law increased five times, I could really kick some VA tail. I would hire a couple of attorneys, some bloggers, and a few graphic artists to jumpstart my Bad VA Art clothing line.

Bad VA Art -> Love It

Robert McDonald Easter Bunny
Imagine this on a t-shirt or mug.

The same must be true for the veterans VA is supposed to serve, right? VA would serve them better, right?

Despite the boost, disabled veterans still may end up with less in their pockets – – some more so than others.

Keep reading.

Winners And Losers On The Budget Increase

VA is the only agency in the budget to see a double-digit increase for 2021. The overall budget is projected to increase over 10 percent overall, with discretionary spending set to increase 13 percent to $105 billion.

If the increase to discretionary spending is realized, it will push VA past the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS). That agency is set to receive a 9 percent spending cut under the plan. Most other agencies are also experiencing cuts with the exception of the Department of Defense.

This appears to be great news for veterans, at least. President Trump is obviously putting veterans first, right?

But why are some disabled veterans still being misled by VA employees about their vocational benefits (a decade long problem)? How come it’s so difficult to gain access to community care (a six-year problem)? Why can’t some veterans get access to dental care or hearing aids or get a fair adjudication on their disability benefits (examples of God-only-knows how long it’s been going on problems)?

RELATED: Negligent VA Doctors Can’t Hide Wrongdoing Anymore

Why are whistleblowers still being harassed and maligned by agency leadership? Where is the accountability for poor leadership?

Where is the extra money really going?

No doubt many veterans, including disabled veterans, are better off today then they were in 2001. Vietnam veterans exposed to herbicides finally have benefits. GI Bill benefits are better than in the past. Health care facilities certainly appear a whole lot fancier than in past.

Some things are certainly better, and no doubt those improvements came through the 5-fold increase to the VA budget. Now we have another record budget.

Are more veterans and disabled veterans going to get more benefits as a result of the newest record budget increase?

Now for some bad news.

New VA Motto: Making VA Benefits Harder Since 1933

Let’s start with an answer to where the money is not going.

The plan calls for a cost-of-living “round down” plan aimed at lowering monthly compensation by rounding all payments down to the nearest dollar. It will reduce budget costs by $2.2 billion over ten years by skimming the cream for other spending projects.

Okay, that may not sound all that bad, right? Veterans will see $12 less per year at most. Meaning, veterans receiving disability benefits will get a slight shave.

The plan also seeks to shave compensation to veterans by updating its compensation and pension benefits program to save $11.6 billion over the next decade.

Under the new proposed rules, VA would make it harder for veterans to get examinations and qualify for benefits. This is on top of the agency’s recent Appeals Modernization Act that made it more difficult for veterans to get help from VA to fight their appeals after being denied benefits.

What do I mean?

Under the new rules, passed in 2017, VA no longer has an expansive duty to assist requirement to serve veterans in securing their benefits once denied in most instances. The new appeals process turned a straightforward process into a menu of options mired in legalese that makes pro se veterans dependent on VSOs and attorneys for help.

Many veterans will wind up being robbed of backpay they deserve if they are fortunate enough to properly address the errors in the appeals process.

Veterans frequently report that the new contractors hired to perform the disability assessments do a poor job and fail to report all the symptoms veterans attempt to address during the exams.

When combined with further attempts to restrict the agency’s obligation to examine veterans claiming disabilities, the proposed changes in support of moving money from Peter to pay Paul will have an adverse impact meaning it is not a full win for veterans everywhere despite the appearance of such.

We Know Who Peter Is, But Who’s Paul?

Peter is the group of veterans seeking benefits in the future through disability compensation and related programs. These veterans will have a harder time getting approved.

Here is a hint to where the money is going – – at least the discretionary funding increase.

During a White House event for American businesses, Trump boasted that “we’re in the midst of a great American comeback” and said that his administration is “creating the most prosperous economy and most inclusive society ever to exist.”

As you may have noted at the beginning, a record amount of money, under this budget proposal, will be poured into the discretionary spending budget largely for government contracting projects. All too frequently, these projects are IT related where the contract ends up not being properly fulfilled.

So, where is the money going?

It’s safe to say the funding increase will not land in the pockets of veterans receiving benefits from the agency including compensation for disabilities.

RELATED: Record Cost Aurora VA Hospital To Serve Fewer Veterans

That much is a certainty.

Support For American Businesses

I support the initiative to support American businesses when it comes to contracting for necessary projects. If VA is going to spend the money, anyway, I would rather the money stay here where the companies exist and where their CEOs (hopefully) pay their taxes.

No doubt, the agency still spends too much of its contracting budget on companies based overseas to provide necessary services and products to American veterans.

RELATED: DOD/VA Not Sure Who Is In Charge Of Cerner Rollout

Rather than spend the money directly on veterans or to focus the budget on American companies that do help veterans, the agency appears all too happy to fund research and IT projects that frequently break. Veterans get trotted out for headlines each Veterans Day, and the systems designed to serve us never seem to quite get repaired or implemented on schedule.

Heck, we see the new Cerner electronic health record system hitting record costs while now being delayed before the initial roll-out, indefinitely. Isn’t it such a coincidence the budget proposal contains record discretionary funding just after Congress learned the VistA replacement is not going as planned.

RELATED: VA Tells Congress Cerner Roll-out Delayed

It’s so bad that Congress just passed a bill mandating that VA create a transparency portal to allow lawmakers to directly monitor how VA is doing with its IT projects when the projected budgetary cost is over $25 million.

Is funding for the overbudget health record replacement being financed on the backs of veterans being stripped of some of their due process rights and benefits they need and deserve?

Let me consult my Magic 8-Ball a second.

Drumroll… “Most likely”…

I Want The Blue Crayon

Based on the new numbers, it certainly appears the new expansive VA budget is not aimed at serving veterans seeking benefits in the future.

Likely, there are also other restrictive policies baked into the language of the budget that will shave benefits from veterans elsewhere suggesting the increase here has more to do with optics and funding new development and IT projects versus directly serving veterans.

These days, veterans seem to have a loud enough voice, and more leverage with social media than in any time in the past to expose scandals and demand answers.

Yet, the agency is running full tilt in the direction of new IT funding and projects at the expense of benefits for current and future veterans.

When will VA stop paying its new fancy computing systems on the backs of the same veterans those systems are supposed to serve? It is almost as if the veterans exist solely for the pleasure of the agency created to serve them.

Rather than listen to us, instead, VA is moving in a different direction.

Sit down. Shut up. And color.

For veterans with significant impairments such as traumatic brain injury, PTSD, and burn pit related cancers, it may be time to sharpen your Crayola.

It is this group of veterans and their families who stand to lose the most under the restrictive compensation policies VA is pushing.

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  1. Nothing will change more veterans will die by va neglect. Get veterans out of the death care and there will be accountability. Va ran by a bunch of thugs!

    1. What are the new policies Ben? Do you know? Let me ask this? Why burn related cancer veterans? Why TBI veterans? Why PTSD veterans? Do you have the answer to this question? Why is the federal government discriminating? When the evidence is there, the evidence is there. Why the reniging? Can you explain? Why are hackers hacking law firms representing veterans who have been denied PTSD claims? Is there a reasoning behind this? IT projects for what? I believe the only IT project they should be concerned with is the Electronic Health Record System to get their system updated finally. Like I have mentioned, they have put out all of these apps from Google. I guess so VA employees will not have to do their jobs. Veterans can look at an app to diagnose themselves or fill a prescription or take the blood pressure or heal an infection or for mindfulness or do therapy on themselves or set their own cast for their broken arms or fix the wheelchairs or fill their eye prescription or approve their claims, etc. What do you think Ben? Being the VA is investing and putting their stock in Google, why does the VA still need physicians, nurses, social workers, psychologists, food service workers, rehab counselors, DAV vans, etc? I am just pointing it out. I guess now Google is not only a Tech genius but a Medical Boarded Licensed Physician. See my point Ben. Maybe the VA Secretary should resign. Hey Ben just let Google take over. This is honestly what Google does. Stick their noses where they do not belong. Google is over zealous. Mr. Wilkie has become a playtoy for Google. I believe the Trump administration has too. Ben, I am serious. With Google now the new medical authority, why should the VA remain open?
      Oh getting back to me, when the VA provider made the comment to me, Angie, you cannot have it both ways. I never understood this comment. If I take a closer look at the situation, how could I have had it both ways? When at that time, my having the decision to have it either way was not even feasible. I could barely function. Ben, this was the time period of when I was preparing for the GRE at the beginning of the process. I will say I have worked very hard over the years to reach my current status.
      It has taken a lot; and, Mr. Wilkie, I am not finished. Mr. Wilkie, you may think I am.

      This is off the topic. My mother’s brother is being given a Lifetime Achievement Award in my home town in the near future. He is Retired Full Colonel. He works at NASA as a Space Program Manager. The moral of me bringing this up is he is the opposite of what Washington DC claims rural America is. He is from the south which is an area of the country that Washington DC makes fun of and despises. He also graduated from a public state high school in the south.

      Ben, this is how the quality of education in the state public schools has gone down.

      Washington DC Elites always say people who are poor and from the south are not bright. Well, DC,
      I guess you just struck out. I guess you are striking out on all of your claims.

      VA Secretary Wilkie, why the continuous stereotyping?

      Also, my uncle is of course a military veteran; and, he has never stepped foot into the VA.

      Mr. Wilkie, could this omittance have contributed to his success? Food for thought!!!

    2. Ben, I am back on here to lamblast the VA. They don’t want to hear and they probably just shut people out who are not in line with them.
      But, listen this is honestly a serious problem when the VA denies veterans Chapter 31 or any benefit for that matter when it comes to saving my life and other vets’ lives too.
      Here is the deal with Voc Rehab. When the VA denies the veterans retraining, this puts the burden on the private sector as in the companies when the VA is already being paid to do this. The VA is also delaying the veterans entrance back in the workforce, the earning potential, and the tax payments. When companies send the veterans all these employment opportunities, vets look at the job description and the criterion. They say I cannot apply for this position at this time. When in reality if the VA had been working all along with the veterans to begin with instead of against them, the veterans could already be ready to land feet first running into employment instead still digging out from hole in the ground.
      The VA just believes the veterans are getting all these wonderful gold mines when this is not even the case.
      Ben, in my opinion the Department of Veterans Affairs delivers a disservice to the rest of the country when they do not fulfill their responsibilities.
      Mr. Wilkie, these situations are not just about the veteran as in him or herself. You are honestly harming your business peers when you dump the responsibility of the veterans on rest of the country when you are the one to whom is being paid to do this job. This is the truth. The VA is still pathetic while continuing to ask the Congress and the President for more money.
      If I was the President of the United States, I would reduce the amount of the budget for the next fiscal year until I saw documented successes having been delivered to the veteran community. I mean written on paper with the numbers and the substance behind the numbers. Mr. Wilkie, you are not approving necessities for the veterans of which they have not already earned. Mr. Wilkie, the benefits are really not benefits. The benefits are really vessels through which veterans regain their lives. You are not giving them anything extra beyond what is due them. This includes my own position in the scheme of things. Now I will shut up my lamblasting. Best.
      Sad Ben.

    3. Oops, you had asked the question in the future to come in relation to the Chapter 31 Vocational Rehabilitation Counselor.
      Should I fear?
      Should I trust?
      Should I loathe?
      No to fear.
      No to trust.
      Hell, I do not even know what loathe means?
      To trust and to not trust travels down many roads.
      Fear is just one road.
      I am not sure why I bothered to respond to your questions.
      Because I am not one of the veterans to be even slated for Chapter 31 at this point.
      So here you have it.
      Motor mouth gone

    4. Motor mouth back here.
      No, the 240 million dollar budget is not going to fully help veterans.
      I would place a bet on it.
      Sometimes, I believe this budget is a set up for the President.
      Of course, I do not know the details behind this budget. So I can’t be sure.
      Onto another topic, I believe Trump and the rest of the Trump administration are kissing up to the Chinese dictator. All the DC elites kiss up to that Chinese dictator.
      As for President Trump, for someone who calls out the media here, calls out the Democrats here, and takes on everyone counter punching, I find it hard to understand why the President has not confronted the Chinese dictator. He may have; but, I am not aware of it if he did. It seems like to me he is kissing up to the Chinese dictator. We should retrieve our manufacturing companies the hell out of that country until the Chinese come around a little.
      Do you know I always look when I buy products to see if they are made in China? If I see they are made in China, I do not purchase them at all. Their fish are full of Mercury. They use sewage water to water their crops. Their car products are made of pure shit.
      I know they are because many of the products do not come close to meeting their warranties.
      The manufactured products break or collapse or burn up.
      I have experienced it time after time to the point that I had enough of it. So I now pay more for the products to have them come through the dealership.
      I am serious.
      But, anyway, here lately, for some reason I have been noticing that Trump seems to be kissing up everywhere. It could be me. I will continue to pay attention to actually determine what the deal is. However, getting back to the VA, who knows???? Only thing that I am sure about is me. So Ben, the time has come. The time is NOW.

  2. Where have vets heard this before?


    1. As for all the technology being used to deliver care such as Telehealth, this is sad.
      With the VA saying that traditional psychotherapies are not effective, this is just a way for them to justify using technology plus to grow the tech companies even larger while lining their pockets.
      The psychotherapies are effective.
      Ben, maybe the Social Workers and Psychologists delivering the therapies may not be qualified due to just book knowledge. After all the VA likes to hire very young. Most of them have not even begun to live life yet much less assist or partner in care with men and women who have fought in the wars. The money is being spent on apps to keep Google in business and to rob the American people. Like I have mentioned, I am thankful that I am not having to just now enter the VA. I am not claiming to know it all. I just know when you eliminate the human element, all bets are off. Ben, do you know what I am kind of baffled and surprised about? President Trump values human connection. Do you see this? But, he is stripping it from the healthcare in this country with the VA being the main recipient.👎

      1. It is not that I do not care for the technology or not that I am not decent with it. The issue has to do with this technology being placed as the sole proprietor of everything is going to bring to the collapse of this country and the American people. With President Trump setting forth policies, laws, and regulations to bring forth success and prosperity in this country and the world, these actions taken save his corporation. Not only does these type policies save his corporation but the other big companies. Yes, this in turn will help the American people who are employed. Free market system always favors the employee. Reason to come back to clarify, look at the law firms that have been hacked. These law firms were evidently representing veterans who had been denied by the VA. The claims are posted online with the VA write-ups. Yes, PTSD claims. They are demanding ransom. If they do not get their money, they will start targeting veterans involved. Did you see this Ben? All of this technology is just opening the door to more corruption. With this being said and about the healthcare exchanges, WellCare, a Fortune 500 company seems to be managing care through Medicare, Medicaid, private healthcare insurances, medication insurances…Do you know this? You may already know. They are headquartered out of Tampa. To get to the jist of my post, President Trump claims to be genuinely concerned for the American people and this country. Yes, I believe he cares more than most presidents that have served in the office of the presidency with the exception of Former President Ronald Reagan. However, I am not so sure he has really taken a hard look at the technological priority. Because ultimately, Ben, using the technology cannot substitute for the human element. Also, with him claiming to fight for what is in the best interest of the American people and this country, I just do not see how all of this technology is in the best interest of the everyday American citizens. For one, using the technology in healthcare particularly in the delivery of care eliminates the genuineness of the medical care being facilitated to the consumer. For the real recovery and healing to thrive, the human elements have to have been incorporated as part of the process particularly in the initial stages of the care being delivered. The use of the apps should be used to educate and inform only. The Google apps cannot ever substitute for real genuine medical care. I do not care how much a love fest the VA Secretary is in with the technology and with the big tech giants. Ben, a human being is a human being. Technology cannot deliver genuineness, empathy, and caring. Sorry Mr. President and Mr. Wilkie. Human touch is valuable and necessary particularly if used to help others. When I mean help, I do not mean enable or nurse to the grave. I mean being respectful of others boundaries with the handup. I do not care if the degree of illness or injury is at the utmost level of infection, inflammation, and non functionality, people can be inched towards health. I mean even at the most minimal level of functioning, the person who has the partnering caregiver walking with them in the process to facilitate the personal self responsibility of the patient by detaching from them in the process while striving with them in taking of the steps. One step at a time while guiding and allowing the person to take the steps to help themselves. This of course is how health and real recovery develops. This can be applied to any aspect of human life. I mean employment, school, and any kind of task. Everyone speaks about Capitalism. Well, here is Capitalism in the bodily care sense. Guiding the person and allowing the person to take the steps themselves. This is what Capitalism affords too. Yes, this economic system affords free competitive markets that of which proliferates profits and revenues for and among many. In addition to the business aspect, this type modality when used in healthcare affords the bearing of fruits in one’s health. So Ben I go back saying, yes, the President is pro-growth in the economy; but, however, in healthcare, I do not see evidence of the pro-growth and pro-life occurring here. Because putting technology as the priority eliminates the human element in one’s care. The human element is honestly the sole source for life itself. Human life thrives with human positive connection among and with each other. Best.

    2. When Chapter 31 Vocational Rehabilitation denied me in 2015, they not only believed that I could not work; but, they also thought that I would never work again.
      Ben, see how projectortory they are. They already predetermine what is going to be based on their own judgements of what they themselves believe is the norm when in reality there are no norms. The norms go with people’s interpretations of whatever the issues are on the table at that particular time. Whatever they consider norms is honestly subjectivity. In my opinion, true, I could not have worked at that time or have completed any type of training. I had a lot on my plate with my own side of the street; but, also, the increasingly frictional attitudes among the VA employees were prevalent during the Obama administration.
      The VA environment would have additionally perpetuated a full sabotage regarding my situation. So the money and time would have been wasted by all parties involved. Although, the final statement here is and this applies to everyone, anyone, and to any situation.

      Never say never; and, it is not over until it is over.

      Retracting back to the time when in preparation for the Graduate Record Examination, one side of the spectrum the VA was honestly working against me but on the other side of the spectrum, I was spending hours on top of hours working and solving Mathematical problems by hand along redeveloping my essay writing by hand. Yes, Ben, hours and hours.
      Of course too, Kaplan Test Prep participation with their instructor of whom I have already mentioned, the University of Florida Material Science Engineer PhD type who after leaving took a position with RedZone Robotics. He was hired as the Vice President of the company. He left there and now is designing Robotics University programs. The other individual of whom was involved in partnering in my efforts was also a University of Florida engineer who was accepted into Purdue University as PhD candidate. He is still there now.

      In looking at the career paths with how the country has shifted away from the human element, I believe the country is heading in the wrong direction in this regard.

      I do have decent tech skills; but, zero certifications and zero recent paid work experience to demonstrate any type of current IT skill level.

      I am decent in Mathematics of which I came to enjoy while preparing for the GRE exam.

      I am currently enrolled with the American Statistical Institute online.

      Getting back to the care, honestly, the issue on medical care cannot be totally delivered from a technological approach.
      Mr. Wilkie would love to think so; but, I disagree. The technology itself will defeat his efforts because of the elimination of the human element.

      The president says he has done lots to fix the VA. Well, he has tried. So has rest of the Trump administration.

      Thus and final, yes, I agree he has done lots to try to improve the VA; but, using technology as the main fixer upper, I disagree with.

      I see this path as one of putting the veterans even more in the backseat while putting the VA in the front seat and with ultimately landing the big tech companies like Google to steer the veterans right off the cliff to almost zero.

      Because all the funding will go right into the technological projects while saying to hell with the veterans in relation to Chapter 31 Vocational Rehabilitation efforts, decent care, and decent anything. Best.

    3. It would not have mattered if I attended the Recruit Military Career fair or not. Ben, I have not had use of my left hand for 8 months. Last spring I had purchased a cell phone from Verizon. The product is made by Motorola. Well, I allergic to Nickel. Motorola only replaces the phone if it is malfunctioning. And Verizon would not replace it either. So I have been stuck. I could not afford a new phone and Verizon wanted me to upgrade to another phone with charging me lots more money. This situation fell under product liability in which only an attorney or consumer law could resolve it. By the time I paid an attorney, I might as well have purchased a new phone. Anyway, my hand got infected. Started seeing a dermatologist last October. In July I was helping my mother with her care. No one else to do it. I had to straighten out the drop of the balls. I could not be positioned to attend face to face anything. I had taken an A+ Computer Certification class last spring but only was able to take the first half. Because I was having to assist. So I enrolled with an online University in Calculus class in July so I it could move with me. And it did. I completed the Calculus class in October 2019 while assisting with care. Put it like this the PA did not help at all in October after I arrived back in the state. The ointment did not help. So even with wearing gloves and bandaging it, my hand was still unusable. My hand has been raw, infected, inflamed, red, dry, and I could not move my left hand to use it. I was dropping everything. So I had enough. Finally, I requested to see the Dermatologist physician and finally something was prescribed that is helping. I started it this past Monday. So far so good. Had worked out earlier today and my friends noticed the improvement since they saw me last. They could still see the remance of it. My left hand is still not healed but at least I can move it now without it being so painful. The redness is gone. It is less raw. The cracks are healing. Ben, everything I have mentioned on your blog I have proof of all and others who are involved and who are along the traveled road. The dermatologist prescribed a strong steroid cream. Private sector derm.
      I have been hampered since last summer. When I was out of state straightening out and assisting, I had to keep it bandaged then.
      Anyway my comments towards the VA are not to disrespect Mr. Wilkie’s leadership. I am referring to the technology. Maybe he knows more about the type of technology than I do. I just know technology cannot replace genuine medical care when it comes to mental health. So Ben everyone is dealing with something. The VA can say or claim whatever; but, they will not know until they know. Have a wonderful weekend.

    4. Agree Crazy Elf.

      Ben, you say the VA is going in a different direction and they are not listening. Well, they have never listened. This is why only a handful of vets maybe receiving a hand up.

      Well, Ben, and too, this is why the VA is still behind the eight ball. As long as they stay behind the eight ball and as long as President Trump is the President, the budgets will continue to increase with more veteran denials on the way and with Google becoming increasingly tyrannosaical.

      They have always been in a different direction. This is why and how the needs of those who are supposed to be being served or offered a hand up are still left behind.

      You ask the question;
      Do you trust the Chapter 31 Vocational Rehabilitation Counselor? No.

      Ben, I do not trust anyone on this Earth. My mother and father are the only trustees in my book.

      You ask the other question;
      Do you fear the Chapter 31 Vocational Rehabilitation Counselor? The answer is no.
      I do not have a reason too.

      I guess my motor mouth will leave the scene as one vet calls my mouth. See ya.

  3. And now “High ranking officers are wanting their base houses refurbished”:

    Don’t forget to read the comments!

      1. An article on Military Times about the political fight surrounding this budget.
        I had mentioned how other populations, agencies, and projects are being stripped to fund the VA.
        Ben, here is my take. If the money allotted to the VA was being spent wisely to honestly help veterans, this decision would be more accepting.

        I do not see it.
        This has nothing to do with me.

        I chose not to attend the Recruit Military job fair yesterday because like I have mentioned due to it’s sponsor. Although, this is not my sole reason.

        Applying and getting on board with a few companies of whom deliver good customer service and treat customers with some respect. The companies who are not always looking to gouge it’s customers. If customer service is good, then, the environment for the employees is good too. I know this and I know which companies who align themselves with this type character and these business practices.

        Not all companies are greed mongers and power mongers.
        See my point.

        In regards to the sponsor of Recruit Military, the low end service officers can cause the sponsor to get a bad reputation.
        I do not know the overall reputation of this sponsor. I just know how in recent years the actions by the lower end involving me were corrupt. I do not appreciate it at all. So therefore, I will not attend any of their career fairs.

        On the issue of the VA, I do believe I agree with the Democrat Takaon. Believe it or not Ben.

      2. When I mentioned other populations, agencies, and projects being stripped to fund big massive budgets like the VA, I later listened to a clip where they fact checked this. In reality, the President has actually increased funding for more medical research… NIH… CDC.. and others. So I have come back to clarify my previous statements of what was being put out. So in all honesty, in my opinion, I do not know who to believe. Moving to another topic about the information they are putting out about the CBT and the PET as not being a saving grace for veterans with PTSD. The VA is claiming that the traditional psychotherapies are not effective. They are now claiming that they need to try something else. Ben, this is nothing new. The VA does this all the time in my opinion to use failed therapy as the basis to ask for more money from the Congress. All of these therapies have been around a long time. EMDR is effective. In my opinion, they are all effective. When I did my independent study and internship under a PhD in Psychology professor who also had a LCSW with a private practice, this professor heavily relied on EMDR in her practice. She had done her research at Stanford University. I was under her as a student. Ben, this was during a time of when I was no where as functional as I am today. During this time, I could barely write an essay and speak. This was how impaired I was at that time. Ben, I took a GRE Prep Class with Kaplan Test Prep. To show you how impaired that I was, my first writing score was a 1.0 out of 5.0 Ben. This was 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012 and finally, in August 2013, I took the GRE 6 months after a major car accident to when my car was totalled. A guy had crossed the yellow line and hit me head on with knocking me unconscious leaving me with a gash in my head and a broken arm. I have a plate in my right arm today. Getting back to the functioning topic, yes, I started with a 1.0 writing score; but, however, when I took the Graduate Record Exam in 2013, my scores were good enough to apply to most departments at the University of Florida except engineering. The dated GRE scores were 3.5 and a combined 300 on verbal and math. Although, Ben, I entered the Navy with a college degree. So my writing skills had to be redeveloped from what happened to me in the Navy. Today, if I were to take the GRE exam, I would score even higher. Though, with the way the country has shifted, I do not have a reason to take the GRE exam to spend the money. Because I know I am not enrolling in a graduate degree seeking program. Only purpose for it today would be to use the score to become a doctor. However, the MCAT is used for this plus one’s degree, grades, and interview. I disagree with the VA on this.
        If the veterans are claiming psychotherapies are not effective, I do not believe the culprits are the therapies. For the therapies to serve as the processors and reflectors for the thoughts, feelings, and emotions to dig from under the overlying, the intertwining, and sidewinding hopeless state of symptoms, connection is imperative. This boils down to trust within the human element. Getting back to the Kaplan Test Prep, the instructor for this class was a UF Material Science Engineering PhD candidate. He moved North. Occasionally, I am still in touch with him. I have a copy of his dissertation from his engineering Doctoral research. Getting back to the college professor during the College Psychology Independent Study Fall 2008 and NFETC Internship 2008, the professor had started to guide me with expressing to me, “Angela this is how writing the Dissertation Starts.” So I am aware of the process of defending one’s research to present it to a University Committee. Ben, people in society have such biases and stigmata towards anyone who has been to a therapist or anything to do with mental health. It is because they do not know the truth. They are not informed the way they should be. One point though they people who are judging really do not care until it happens to them. Why am I saying this? This professor taught as a college professor. She was also a Licensed Social Worker. She also was a Psychology PhD. My point is Ben and for all of you who pass through this blog and this means the VA types, this professor put in place the most important priority. Do all of you know what this priority was? With her even having a private practice, she kept herself in check by attending therapy sessions herself. This is the way she kept herself healthy so she could help others in her practice. I will tell you why the VA claims that the group therapy and the individual therapy is not effective is because the VA system seems to be not attuned to when to move the veterans forward or maybe they know and do not care or know how??? As for the veterans, I will say no wonder to why many choose not to seek help. Ben, therapy is effective. The VA just does not want to admit it is effective. Because they do not want anything or anyone to be successful anyway. Because if there is success, then oops, what do we do now? They search to create another fiasco. As for the veterans who the VA claims the therapy does not work for, if the veterans are living in groups and therapy, this is all they witness daily. So how do they really know? Because they have not left the none real world groups. When veterans are in programs long term, this in itself becomes counter productive. Yes in the groups, therapy skill building is ongoing but the skills can only be developed to a certain point. Then it is time to transition to the continuance of skill building outside of the groups and outside of the individual therapies with heading on into life pragmatism and life practicality which involves dealing with people who are so called or considered normal by the rest of society. When in reality, there is no such state as normal. The skills become problem solving on the fly from intuition. Because the person who has been in isolation forever from reality of the world remember lost the world skills when they became sick. Yes, role playing possible life situations are helpful in the therapy and in the skill building process; but, the role playing does not in anyway entail or match the person doing the real deal when they come back into the real world society. Now, the federal government and people in positions of authority love to use the term normal as their platform to make laws, regulations, and policies. In using the normal modality, the closest the medical profession can get to the norm is by using the normal distribution bell curve to then determine where most people fall by using the numbers that have been calculated with placing them on the bell curve within the standard deviations above and below the Mean.
        Of course, there are those people who are outliers. However, after proper therapy and treatments, these people to may can become to fall within the standard deviations on the Bell Curve. Seems though the VA never believes such. If they did, then the VA would no longer be the VA.
        VA please reevaluate your position. Another point VA, all the apps that you are using as the substitute for care, I do not agree. VA you are removing the human element. When veterans are initially starting care for problematic issues, the human element should be applied to establish the foundation. It is only after they progress, that is if you allow them too progress, should the apps then be considered. Enough said…. I bet the VA is tired 😴 of me.

      3. To finish my comments, when the person comes out the other side, the person then has the ability to connect while feeling connected. The person feels whole internally. The insides of the person are filled in. In other words, the person can live in one’s space without feeling lonely. The person feels content. When arriving here, not only did the functioning improve but the symptoms reduced themselves.
        And the way that this happened is through checking reality constantly whether in conversations with other people or with actual situations. This is a learned skill. Also, the memory can regenerate if one uses the brain. However, to improve the memory is to do the double visual, listening, and verbal mental notes to reinforce the memory from the time of almost zero memory when deep into the illness until it becomes the new spontaneous memory. This is also a learned skill. Checking the reality also involves exposing the psychotic symptoms. Exposing the psychosis breaks the power of it. The exposure of the psychosis only happens after the person has developed the skills to do so. The exposure is a building block process developing over the years by the person doing it enough that person then assumes the position of reality. I mean the reality out of psyhosis. Now, if the person is totally out of reality with experiencing full blown psychosis, the only way to stabilize is by using medications and hospitalizations.
        No, way does the person have the ability to shutdown the psychosis by doing reality checks by oneself. Because at this time, person is in full delusions, voices, and hallucinations.
        Though, getting to the PTSD diagnosis, I do not believe people with this diagnosis experience the level of psychosis that a person does or has when they have other types of diagnoses or when they have been diagnosed with other type of diagnoses in the past.
        Oh yes, for those in the mental health profession who have patients who have active addictions. Please suggest to them to try this to establish their sobriety. I know in the program of Alcoholics Anonymous, it is standard to establish a sobriety date. Well, if the single date is just too difficult. Just say to hell with the date. Just start at one minute, one hour, one day at a time and build days into years. Do not even have a date. Do not track it. Just live life. Or start living life. Find a purpose. When the purpose arrives, the hope shows up. Before the purpose arrives, one has to have meds and therapy. Or just therapy. Depends on the person. This does not plague me at all today. It doesn’t VA and it hasn’t in a long time. Though, the VA maybe saying WTF. Well, VA remember one size does not fit all. But yet you have tried make it this way. 🗽🇺🇸🙏😎👍👊🤝💪🥇🎾

    1. In regards to the Coronavirus, manufacturing, and businesses, this is what these elites get. They have wanted to keep their companies in China and not have any located in the United States. These companies had moved most of the jobs into foreign countries. And for companies we have here, businesses made it almost their priority to bring in H1B Visas to take jobs from Americans. Of course, Trump has been changing some of this. Ben, I agree with the President on lots but not all. But getting back to the businesses and this Coronavirus, the United States should not have put all their eggs in one basket China.

    2. Ben, I will say this.
      I am thankful that I am not being retired or leaving the military during this time period to enter the VA. I am thankful that I am not a student in the K-12 school system today. I am serious. I will not go back to the VA. If going, I may just leave the VA all together if it goes. Sad to me with the direction of the care. If I was entering the VA today with how sick I was in the past, I would more than likely be laying in my grave in no time. I viewed some of the VA developments. Ben, I find it disheartening. My opinion.
      I do not care what the Trump administration or the VA thinks about my comments. I am just doing a comparison. My message to people is they had better take care of themselves. Otherwise, the bets will be off.

    1. Yes Dan, I agree.
      Ben, in reference to my previous posts in regards to the Legislative Senate and House hearings in regards to the Department of Veterans Affairs. House Committee on Veterans Affairs…..In regards to the comments that the government officials claim the President mentioned, yes and no as to who made the comments if they matter or do not matter. Fact of the matter is that people with mental disabilities or mental disorders or people who have been diagnosed with mental disabilities or mental diagnoses in the present and in the past suffer greatly from that particular screenshot of time forward as compared to someone who has a physical disability. This issue does not matter if the president said it or not. If he did, he is truly not informed. Being the Democrats love to pigeon hole people and act concerned about injustice or inequality, well, Ben, here is a perfect example of discrimination all the way around. Ben, this is even in the same category itself. But you know who has established this? The federal government and society. I will illustrate. This is an issue that has a serious gap. I will say this gap should not be here. I will explain why. What I mean includes TBI too. Until later tonight.

      1. A little now and rest later. It is hard to believe the president did make those statements with comparing mental injury to physical injury while serving on active duty and even as civilian. But, if he did, once again I say he is not informed due to him saying mental injury is not as devastating as physical injury both at the time of occurance and the then wounds from the injury. At time of injury compare person experiencing psychosis synchronously with the brain being locked down to such a degree that the person exhibits the processing of thoughts not connecting with the speaking of words. This results in loss of speaking ability 3/4 of the process. With the psychosis, now enter into the equation tactile hallucinations happening. What I mean by tactile hallucinations is the person experiencing fluids releasing and flowing in the brain. The tactile hallucinations are the same as sensations happening in the brain with the person witnessing the fluids releasing in the brain. There is cerebral spinal fluid but the person cannot sense this. So therefore, the fluids gushing in the brain are tactile hallucinations. Tactile hallucinations are part of the psychosis spectrum. Now, move to the next type of psychosis is visual hallucinations which is the person seeing visual occurrences that other people around him or her are not witnessing. Now, onto the next type of psychosis is auditory hallucinations which is involving hearing voices that others are not witnessing as well. Now, enter into the equation of the intensity of the feeling level that the person is experiencing that has produced the tactile hallucinations, the visual hallucinations, the auditory hallucinations, the delusions, and the delayed output of words within the broken sentences steming from the delayed thought process. Enter into the equation the person sitting for days with not being able to function due to the level of bodily distress that had been occurring and still occurring. Enter into the equation paranoia. Enter into the equation the brain experiencing physical pain. Well, the brain does not experience physical pain inside itself. What is happening is the person when spoken to by other person the stimuli entering into the brain is actually causing pain. Not emotional pain but physical pain. Researchers say physical pain is not felt in the brain. Boils down to psyche being in a state of fragility or rawness due to the environmental happenings thrusted onto the person that of which the person had zero control over. It is called tyrannical and negligent decisions made by military managers who showed zero respect for rights. Now, enter into the equation of military member losing legs due to IED. Ben, both are injuries. One is physical and one is mental. Ben, both get in the way of performance. One will require antipsychotics, hospitalizations, monitoring, therapy, and redevelopment of skill building to stabilize the person back if the person can come back. And, the other veteran will require surgery, prosthetics, and physical therapy to adapt to the change in order to come back. Ben, there is not one less or more than the other. In the beginning both can be viewed visually. As time moves forward, others will only be able to view the person who has the physical disability. I mean be able to recognize it. This is where alot of problems and issues arise against the person who has had the mental happenings or who is still having the mental happenings to a degree but has entered the equation of the residualing status.
        Now, take the military member who experiences witnessing others being killed by enemy or terrorists. Yes traumatic. Can have lasting effect. Like I have mentioned the impact is different per person. Got to go. Ultimately, the president is not correct. This is a heavy issue. It is though the federal government who contributes to the discretions with putting one not equal to the other. I will continue for what it is worth. Be back.

    2. Ben, let me bring something to your attention. When the VA has decided to enact policies and laws that are making the veterans handle their claims themselves after denials, Ben, the VA is compounding the problems by kicking them down the road. Most veterans who are involved in this process at this time are unable to handle it themselves. Most maybe too sick. However, if the military has retired the veterans with a service connected disabilities, the VA should not be denying veterans right off the bat. I do not understand this at all. DAV National Service Officer handled my process.
      But, many of the service officers today are not genuine in their efforts. Ben, this is true.
      I liked what the AMVets lady service officer put out yesterday in the House on Committee on Veterans Affairs in her statements. She was correct. She was targeting the Congress. Most of the content in her statements were right on track.
      This is true too. When a veteran who loses limbs in combat, he is viewed with total credibility. Everyone rushes to handle everything from adapted homes to disability claims to prosthetics to education to scholarships for the dependents to etc. Now, when a veteran who experienced brain injury, mental health, and impairments due to either combat or non combat military service, do you know where most of them are landing today? Homeless, in prison,
      losing jobs if they were trying to hold employment, divorced, drug addicted, suspended from school, in debt…I have read comments about veterans bleeding the system with claiming everything under the sun…I actually find that hard to believe because all of the resources within the whole VA system are hard to access. And the VA employees surely are not helping them. Even some service officers are not serving in the best interest of the veterans. So Ben I do not see what people are claiming about the younger veterans. I do not get it. In comparing the mental health disorders to physical disabilities, Ben they are not being viewed as conditions which can equally cause problems. One is no more less than the other. Both are impediments. More later. Got to go.

    3. Hey Ben and all, my comments in regards to personal experiences were from the past. In my comments, I had brought some experiences into today just to express my opinion on the state of the VA and the country today. As for the today, I do not agree with some of the happenings. However, I am okay myself and doing well. :>)

  4. Beltway Piggies at the trough. Just follow the money. Veterans don’t have a Super PAC.

    Don’t let your kids serve.

    1. I agree.
      Ben and all, if knew back then what I know now I would have never entered the military. If I had known that I would have landed in the VA, I would have never entered the military at all because I surely did not have too.

      1. Ben, you mentioned yes the budget and somewhere earlier today, a big discussion was occurring about mental disabilities like TBI, PTSD, and other type mental health conditions I may have listened to it today in passing. The House Committee on Veterans Affairs met today Ben. I do not know what all was discussed. I only had a chance to listen a couple of minutes. And what I was listening to, I disagreed with. I did not like what I was listening too. However, when you mentioned the color crayons, regardless of the mental health disability at first in the illness yes, OT, Art, Brain work are necessary. Because people who have mental health and addictions and on meds and off meds have to acclimate. The brain chemistry has to adjust. Step by step. At first in the initial stages of recovering from the trauma or concussion or coming off medications people are fragile. The compensatory skills are being developed as the person builds by doing. Academia, crossword puzzles, ceramics, art, exercise, math, therapy… Ben, what I was listening to was coming from the perspective that the veterans are hopeless. To improve the tough love and the challenging needs to happen. Ben stress is healthy. People can become to handle more. But from what I was listening to, they want to nurse to control to not allow recovery. Like what you mentioned the crayons.. Ben, the House Committee on Veterans Affairs mentioned the veterans are running as hard as they can to get out of the VA. Ben, this is exactly the main line that I overheard today. Though this is true. Ben honestly, most veterans no matter how sick they are do not want their hands held. But the VA is going it at in the way to where the VA is going to glue the veterans hands to the medical wards and the facilities of the VA. Ben, enslavement is as bad as
        non-enslavement. I agree with you.

      2. Ben, the veterans have many reasons not to go to the VA. The Congress just cannot wrap their heads around it. But Ben it is obvious. Maybe veterans want to be able to live their lives just like the Congress and the Senate are doing. This is Life though. People shit on others everyday. People doing things at the expense of others to make themselves all that when in reality they are no better. Now, the people who actually work and earn their wealth are the real successes. But honestly people who land under the government’s realm in my opinion are doomed until they get out from under the government. I do not care if the people have had something happen to where it warrants government compensation and funding. Any time a person receives anything from the government they are kept locked in the beholden status. Ben, veterans are deserving of decent care. When I mean decent care, I mean accountability, ethics, and no medical errors. I also listened to some in the House Committee on Veterans Affairs make the statements that the President is viewing mental disabilities as not warranting the same degree of care as compared to physical disabilities. I am not sure about this statement. I have to listen to the hearing in full. Also, I am not sure if the President actually believes this or is the House Committee on Veterans Affairs putting words in his mouth? There is so much crap. I am really sick of it. I had planned to attend the Recruit Military career fair. I cannot hardly bring myself to go to this because the DAV is their sponsor. I have almost decided to get my own job in which I am doing. I just do not care for the politics at all Ben. I do not care what they do. There is zero need to.

      3. Another point Ben, is the government always loves to create chaos to distract from what they are really doing. You and all already know this. Just commenting. None of them so it seems can ever act with the transparency to provide the facts on anything. If anyone or anything deserves to be viewed as hopeless with zero positive change in sight, I believe my statement here aligns with the current situation of the VA and govt officials. Trump administration has great accomplishments in the country. However, there are some areas like the VA in which it seems he is being lied to. But not really sure. He may not have all the information or he may not realize. In my opinion, regardless of what it is, throwing more money at it does not generate solutions. Although, if you look at his businesses of when he had business issues in the past, he sought out banks to continue to loan him more money. Ben, the Duteche bank. He maybe applying the same business modality here Ben. Keep adding more money to force it to succeed. But Ben he is taking the human element out of it so it seems with the massive technology. Massive technology does not generate all life. Just like a man made pill for every medical issue does not either. So if how can one measure success if the purpose of why the agency or institution exists is not being fulfilled? Ben, the VA does not generate profits like a company does or like one of the Trump hotels. Now with all of the funding for the technology, he could be developing this as in I mean the VA leadership steering this to a status that will transform it into a model like a major corporation. See this Ben. Of when, the veterans would be paying more co-pays. How could the VA go to total privatization?It is too overregulated and compartmentalized. Total privatization could only hold up with profits, revenues, capital, stocks…. veterans would have to be paying…not all veterans can work…most older veterans need caregivers… with intimate care… Though, with what Trump is doing, it almost seems he is trying to privatize the whole federal government. Because he keeps throwing money at it with expecting different results. I just do not see it. He will be draining all the money out of the economy to put it into the VA. Ben, he is doing this now. Stripping other agencies and taking from certain populations so he can do this. Do you see this? Ben, I do not see his logic at all. Keep doing the same thing with expecting different results. Not when there is little accountability and throwing even more veterans under the bus. I do not understand at all. 👎

      4. Benjamin, I just went back to listen up to the point of when Mr. Takaon made the comment that the President of the United States spoke with saying mental health injuries or brain injuries are not as serious as the physical injuries. I will say to the president face to face that he is totally 100% incorrect. And I will not back down. He is not correct. He is not informed. He is NOT INFORMED. I will define it for what it is worth. Any kind of severe injury is a severe injury. One cannot compare apples and oranges. This is what I mean. When an event happens to a person that contributes to harm of the person, it is 9 times of 10 related to the environment. Some person, place, or thing has caused the negative impact onto the affected person. Now, the person at the end of the firing squad could be affected seriously or mildly or moderately. The effect of the harm is determined by the psyhe of the person. Say the same event or the same type trauma happened to two different people or happened to many people, Ben, the impact will be different on each person. Each person responds differently. But then the trauma or event cannot be the same, the actual trauma or event cannot be measured before impact. If this were the case, the event or trauma would have to be broken down into elements, atoms, and molecules that is if the event was chemical or biological means. The event or trauma would have to be calculated with certain types of numbers. The only way for the President to put an exact identifier onto the event or trauma is for it to be measured. Then too after the impact onto one’s psyche, the psyche would have to be calculated. Until both the trauma itself and the effect of the trauma onto the person have numbers identifying the happening, the President cannot make a call. Until the numbers are calculated, the president is present in abstraction. Ben, mental health and brain health involve abstraction. Like the DSM-V is subjective. The DSM-V is based on evidence based research that is qualitative. Brain whatever is qualitative based on thoughts, feelings, and emotions. Until the researcher or the neural engineer gets into the molecular level or biological aspect of the brain which would then involve receptors and neurons. Now the level of distress can be observed by the other person externally and felt internally by the affected person. I will have to stop but I will continue. I want to point out how it is much harder for a person with a mental health disorder or mental disability to arrive back as compared to someone with a physical disability. I want to point out how society is more accepting of one as compared to the other. In reference to opportunities, less or more stigmatization… If the Democrats really desire to get to the substance on the disabled, I will take them through the societal path. I will be getting myself to the career fair tomorrow. So I will return tomorrow to finish my comments for what they are worth. Although, the president is not correct. He sounds shallow and biased. Ben, to follow up check with conservative psychs if you do not believe what I am saying is credible. I am speaking to my own experiences though and what has happened around me. The APA is politicized. This is why I say conservatives.

    2. With over half of the POST 9/11 Veterans claiming PTSD and the rest claiming 15 -50 injuries the V.A. has to shave money off.

      These wars might be long but avg deployment is still at 13 mo tha

      In 19 years there’s only been 53,000 wounded which includes the 5800 severally. That the lowest wounded since the Spanish American war. They combat exposure and KIA are also the lowest

      But even with so few wounded OIF OEF Vetetans have claimed so many injuries that they now receive more V.A. disability CASH than WWII KOREAN and VIETNAM Wounded Combined,

      Plus they get up to an extra $3200 for wives or GF to be their caregivers. 90% receiving this stipend claim it’s for “PTSD”. Now they all still drive, shop, go on numerous free retreats but they swear they need a caregiver at Home

      Anyway, I think I understand what the problem is but what can anyone really do about it?

      A young Veteran in an all VOLUNTEER Military claiming PTSD is Americans “SACRED COW”.

      You don’t dare question them

  5. I’ve been involved with the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) for decades. It seems to me that VA care for veterans, regardless of a Veterans disability, continues to be a “hit or miss” situation — kind of like pulling the lever on the one-armed bandit in a Casino.

    Sometimes you (as the Veteran) win and receive good medical care or a prompt and accurate disability-compensation decision. However, the “House”, which is the VA, has a much better advantage over the Veteran, and more Veterans are losing out than winning some chump change.

    I can only suggest that the Casino (i.e., the entire VA system) loosen up the almighty slot machines and allow for more winners. After all, the VA is supposed to be regulated by law — just like Casinos.

    Or, the almighty Casino (i.e., VA) could just privatize, and turn everything over to Walmart. Just think, you could pick up a quart of Castrol 5w-30w oil, and then stop by for an adjustment to your prosthesis on the way out ! Be mindful of the sales items as you breeze through the aisles, as well !

    Lastly: A positive change in the VA will never occur by just throwing more money into the Department of Veterans Affairs budget. An increased budget actually allows the VA to add more incompetence, while putting a “spin” on their “continuing efforts toward healthcare excellence.”

    When the fact remains that disabled Veterans (including me) are “stuck” with this present-day system, with real improvement not to occur in our lifetime unless the VA is simply dismantled altogether, a go-along to get along situation will remain. I know, sounds defeatist. But, quite the reality.

    Nonetheless, Veterans can and should continue to demand their entitlement(s), and those who do should be among the most honored in the tenacity hall of fame.

    My own comments to VA providers, and their whimsical staff, is often along the line: “I continue to be cooperative with the VA, within reason, but I’m never obedient to it.”

    So let’s hope (and pray) for the best, but be prepared for the worst. I’m reasonably confidant that positive changes will occur with the VA, although I’ll never see it in my lifetime. I’m age 70, and my military time was several voluntary tours in ‘Nam, and have a few medical issues now associated with that service. Through it all, I’d do the military service all over again, but I’d probably never involve myself with the VA all over again.

    Thanks for reading my rant, or comments, or whatever we’re calling all of this !

    1. Last night during the democratic debate I was submitting questions to candidates relative to my 100% rating with the correlation of establishing a connection between veterans having their medications I taken away, and the suicide rate.
      For me personally, after winning a 40 year battle for VA benefits to obtain my 100% rating: “I have not received any benefits whatsoever after award. Period. What I did receive was a 72 hour stay in the hotel MH for an EVAL. Seeing how I was mentally competent their plan to have me committed backfired. If you are declared mentally incompetent, or imprisoned: then you are NO longer going to receive VA compensation.

      I am a stroke (SAH) survivor. Brain Bleed the worst variety. The LifeFlight neurosurgeon attest causation was related to 30 years of untreated cPTSD & untreated pain. The attending Neurosurgeon noticed the correlation of my 1976 medevac overseas to MADIGAN ARMY HOSPITAL; Inwhich I displayed stroke-like Symptomatology. But was intentionally misdiagnosed as a panic attack.

      Then I had my lifesaving medications which were delineated by the attending LifeFlight neurosurgeon who had saved my life we’re then taken away by the VA. If the veteran dies – then he can’t collect benefits. I almost died from this bonehead move by our loving & caring VA. Almost! But not yet. My functionality and Quality-of-Life are zero. And my ability to wage protest is hampered, but I’m still alive and kicking. Thus, hoping common sense will return by treating these veterans properly for pain, and returning my rescue medications. These actions are in direct violation of my civil rights..
      These billions Congress is throwing at the VA’s problems should be going towards dental implants that I’ve been waiting on since my award: APR2008. I’ve been on the VA surgical waitlist for a broken Patella since OCT2010. Now my Patella has fragmented in my knee, became extremely arthritic, and endemic. And is now NOT a candidate for knee replacement. Meaning amputation is highly most likely option left.

      I don’t see the VA using any of these funds congress designated for 100% rated Veterans like me. Funds will most likely be used against veterans seeking compensation and ratings; in the form of increased benefits for VA MEDICAL PERSONAL who lie and deny benefit to eligible veterans. Or put into advertising designed to educate public how wonderful things are at the VA. This would be under the heading of false advertising. Brain washing tactics. Education of VA rating personnel how to cheat veterans out of benefits by hook, crook, and deception. Hell, my VA Medical Record looks nothing like my civilian medical records. You wouldn’t think I was the same person by comparing records. So many lies, deceptions, and false accusations. Now if they can control the civilian medical profession to use their hidden agenda tactics to squash veterans hopes for receiving compensation & benefits for sc-disabilities.

    2. Yes military; but no VA.
      In my situation back then, there was not a choice. The VA is where I landed due to the circumstances.
      No way my parents could have handled it either. Better off, if one serves to just die in combat then the VA would never be an issue.

  6. I don’t know how you do it Mr. Krause. Where do you find the energy to persevere against this mammoth organization of corruption? Thank you for going the distance and not giving up! My prayers are with you always.

    Just Another Day

    1. 70? Oorahh Krause.
      As I.
      USMC ’67-’73
      USNR ’76-’96 or 8
      We could do some good things together.

  7. Now they will receive on October 1st a very much larger bonus.

    Instead of hundreds of millions being divvied up, it will be in the billions.

  8. Benjamin You’re very brave to allow Your picture and name to be attached to this Article. With this kind of money being spread around, they will go as far as KILLING to shut anybody up who wants to draw attention to this! Just like I tell people there is a difference between a Million Dollars President and a Billion Dollars President! People will do and say practically any thing you want them to say and do as long as You’re stuffing their pockets and bank accounts!!

  9. Social media isn’t helping anything especially when we are targeted for leaving comments, to trying to network with others, etc. Too much AI censoring algorithms and too many censors/activist. Click on a pop up ad for harmed veterans… get a blank screen and Trojan site or attempts. Use social media?

    They are dumping tons of money and time into supposedly improving their IT networks and merging. Building some new VA clinics but hiring the same caliber of people in the same corrupt unions, out of the same “boomer” hating colleges, and associations or PACs, or activist. With some states, communities, their “Chambers” wanting to focus on hiring “aliens.” “immigrants,” or wanting to bring in more globalist using visas for governmental health care staff. Hint hint. “Governmental offices and governmental health care staff.”

    Some of us have been in the gutters fighting all this trash for years and it all just gets worse as the games and “targeting” increases. The VSOs, outreach groups, media, the public, etc., are still turning their backs on many vets due to politics or being labeled as “whistle-blowers” or “problems.” With the majority of people not caring about the censoring issues or all the “associations” out there to destroy us daring to speak up.

    Veterans in Canada are dealing with the same stuff too including burn pits. Even having to go on the run after being turned in for hate speech, daring to mention certain health issues, or daring to mention wrongs in health care, being censored, threatened, flagged like they do in the states, or other issues during service time.

    Bottom line is, nothing is being done about the vast amounts of cover-ups or corruption, nothing. Just like the censoring or assaults on our “rights.” Passing phony laws and giving lip-service won’t work either. Transparency for those who can manipulate records, files, reports or bury news, etc? All out to protect their own? Might as well try to get Congress to vote in term limits or have them use the same health care models like the VA we had to try to use. Ain’t going to happen.

    1. Put a 100% disabled vet. Ie wia purple heart recipient × 2 Marine in Charge of the $$$
      Then things will Change.

  10. Did C&P Monday. Some improvements. Tinnitus actually tested for with 3 successive beeps so you could tell the difference between the sound in your head and the sound coming from the audiogram.

    Still almost refused to do exams not listed until I said I would walk out if they weren’t done because it would only mean another remand to get them done. Exam assigner apparently only went from previous disabilities listed and not on old incomplete exams and current claim and remand.

  11. You may want to take a gander at how Cerner is doing in KC as other private health care systems are dropping their Cerner systems for others, meanwhile?

  12. I keep telling my husband that there isn’t going to be any additional funding for disability benefits. They’re just going to wait for other people to die and pass their benefits off to the next veteran waiting for a claim to get approved. IF it gets approved at all.

  13. Hi there, Mr. Krause. When you refer to “under the new proposed rules, VA would make it harder for veterans to get examinations and qualify for benefits”, can you provide more detailed information about how the VA would make it harder to qualify for benefits?

    Is that simply because the duty to assist has been lifted or is the VA going after the “as likely as not” burden of proof or something else?

  14. I wonder how much MORE taxpayers monies will be going to that VA “public relations firm” out that $240+ billion to spin how great the VA is!

    Maybe Wilkie wasn’t such a good idea to run the VA! Read this;

    1. I would most certainly like to know the truth on this sexual harassment case. It is par for the course for military leaders to cover this shit up. Oh yes.

      1. Angela,
        *””* has an article out now. Where a young woman, who’s 21 years old, has plead guilty to making a false rape allegation. This was not her first one!
        IMO, these types of allegations impead AND make real rapes harder to prosecute!

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