Bush Administration Proposes Cut in Veteran Benefits - page 7

It seems that our President has given his blessing, no he specifically gave his approval, to cut benefits to veterans, increase the out of pocket cost some veterans pay for their meds, cut... Read More

  1. by   kmchugh
    Deb, again I apologize. It isn't my intent to upset you. But, go back through the thread. Look at the posts that have been put up about this topic.

    Look first at the original report:

    Quote from barefootlady
    It seems that our President has given his blessing, no he specifically gave his approval, to cut benefits to veterans, increase the out of pocket cost some veterans pay for their meds, cut benefits/services, especially out-patient services at several facilities nationwide, and charge this new generation of veterans about $250.00 per stay in facilitles.
    Nothing even remotely unusual there. Service connected veterans, as I have pointed out REPEATEDLY do not pay for their care. THose paying out of pocket are those being treated for non-service connected conditions. Even barefootlady eventually admitted that veterans probably should not receive free care for non-service connected conditions.

    Quote from RRN
    I guess I better not tell you that those young men and women recovering at WRAMC and any other medical facility for that matter have to pay for their meals...Even if they got their leg blown off.
    Only knew part of the story. You know how BAS works. This is the norm, not some cruel punishment inflicted on the troops. Yet that poster has yet to return with an "ah ha" moment. Even though Bob explained the situation quite well.

    Quote from elkpark
    More of that ol' compassionate conservatism, huh? Don't get me started ...
    Quote from germain
    Pay for their own meals? Thier own body armor? WHO VOTED FOR THIS *** HOLE? Not me. All I can say is GIVE and prove that we can do better for vets in our own community.

    2008 is 43 months away
    These don't seem condescending to you? And as for my comment about "trumping" MedicalMT1, I admit that was not the best way to word it. The point was that she went fishing for me to say something that would allow her to call my service connection questionable. I posted the cause of my service connection, and suddenly, she shuts up. She tucks tail and runs. Why? Because she knew she was wrong.

    Go back again to the original post, and how the essential falsehood it told is being continued: Bush cuts veterans benefits!!! What a beast!!! But if you look at the data objectively, then the expenditures are going UP, not down. From the site referenced by Begalli:

    "Although the proposed 2006 federal budget calls for a 1 percent increase in the overall veterans affairs allotment -- from $67.5 billion to $68.2 billion -- some programs are recommended for cuts, in part to compensate for rising disability and pension costs."

    One percent may not be a lot, but its certainly the exact opposite of a cut, wouldn't you agree? Spending is going up, but some programs, particularly some underused programs and programs more used for patients without service connected conditions (for example, nursing homes) are being cut. Fine. However, what everyone misses is the fact that if I needed nursing home care tomorrow for a service connected condition, I'd get it. And yes, I looked into that not long ago related to the potential need for some longer term care after a knee replacement. Just being prepared. That all seems perfectly correct and in keeping with the promises made to me when I joined the military.

    Am I being hard, harsh even? I don't know, but it does seem to me that money for veterans is better spent on helping those with service connected conditions. One question you have never answered: Are you advocating a ten fold or more increase in VA funding to cover all health care for all veterans? Because that is the minimum of what it would take to provide free health care to all veterans. If not, you must accept that some programs, particularly programs for veterans with non-service connected conditions will have to be cut. Or are you just advocating that there should be free heath care for some veterans with non-service connected conditions? And whose to decide who those "some" are?

    The point here is that the administration has been criticized based on incorrect and partial information. I've been criticized for coming to the defense of the administration. But as I've said repeatedly, there are huge problems with the VA, big enough for me to believe that the system ought to be shut down. But the problems begin with the non-appointed career functionaries of the VA, not with the current (or past) presidential administration. It is an inbred, hard wired attitude. As to your question about funding, I have to be honest, I haven't made a study of the issue. However, it seems to me that if we keep funding at current levels, and shut down all VA hospitals and lay off all VA healthcare employees, that would free up several billion dollars from facilities maintenance and upkeep, as well as salary. That in turn would give the VA more money to spend on veterans, and perhaps more indigent veterans with non-service related conditions would be able to get good quality health care. Not a huge leap of logic. The system was designed and set up to care for the literally millions of veterans from WW I and WW II. But there simply aren't that many veterans anymore. Time to size the system to meet today's needs.

    I apologize again for seeming condescending, but again, it seemed (and seems) to be far more condescending to me to keep preaching about budget cuts when there is an obvious increase as reported by Begalli. It is condescending beyond description to preach in this manner to me:

    Quote from begalli
    We are NOT talking knees and appys here with this plan. We are talking medications that maintain life and taking care of such basic needs to those vets who require skilled nursing care. To cut benefits to veteran's LTC is the lowest of the low.
    when in fact the lowest of the low seems to me to be to continue funding such programs for non-service connected vets at the expense of the growing number of veterans with service connected conditions.

    Yes, this issue is personal for me. I get passionate about it. If I stepped on your toes, I apologize. But if there is one thing I recognize, it is this: The political party of the politician sitting in the oval office is irrelelvant. The problems with the VA are far more deeply entrenched than a politician, or even funding changes can fix. Bashing whoever the current administration in the name of "the veterans" isn't going to get it done.

    Kevin McHugh
  2. by   live4today
    Quote from Katmease
    Thanks Kevin & Bob for clearing things up.
    Thank you both for your service to our country!
    I second that thanks Kevin and Bob. Thanks for telling it like I would have told it. This is exactly how the VA Hospitals and Veteran programs work. As for the meals, I know for a fact that to be true, too. Bush isn't causing problems with the Veterans benefits. If he does, I'll be the first to scold him.
  3. by   NRSKarenRN
    Closing for time out and admin review.

    Reopened:
    Keep focus on the topic and not individual poster please.
    Last edit by NRSKarenRN on Apr 20, '05
  4. by   kmchugh
    Has this thread been re-opened? Because if it has, I'm still waiting for Begalli to tell me exactly what her frame of reference is.

    KM
  5. by   SmilingBluEyes
    Quote from cheerfuldoer
    I second that thanks Kevin and Bob. Thanks for telling it like I would have told it. This is exactly how the VA Hospitals and Veteran programs work. As for the meals, I know for a fact that to be true, too. Bush isn't causing problems with the Veterans benefits. If he does, I'll be the first to scold him.
    He is not helping, either, by suggesting cuts without viable alternatives!I do blame Bush for turning his back on today's and yesterday's vets in this way. It's A-ok to go to war and praise them to the Heavens while fighting, but what about when these fighting men and women come home broken in body and spirit, and now are being told the only system they have, however broken, is being downsized? How would YOU Feel?

    Fix it or provide a viable alternative, don't just CUT FUNDS! That is not the way to "give back" to some who gave it all!!!! :angryfire
    Last edit by SmilingBluEyes on May 6, '05
  6. by   dbihl
    Quote from mercyteapot
    And this is a surprise, why??? This what he and his ilk do.
    amen mercy teapot............amen! You are a psychic, that is what I thought when I read the thread title.
  7. by   kmchugh
    Quote from SmilingBluEyes
    Fix it or provide a viable alternative, don't just CUT FUNDS! That is not the way to "give back" to some who gave it all!!!! :angryfire
    Deb

    With all due respect, this is where I have a problem with what you are saying. Funds are not being cut. Funding to the VA is increasing. Some programs used for non-service connected people are being cut, but this seems to me to be a necessary step so that more funds are freed up to help veterans with service connected conditions, including those coming home from the current war.

    Kevin McHugh
  8. by   AuthorityPR0BLEM
    Quote from mjlrn97
    In four words: Is it 2008 yet? :icon_roll :angryfire

    Amen!
  9. by   CHATSDALE
    the paying for meals if you are receiving bas pay has always been the norm for all services
    as for care in the va hospital..the clinics in some are horrible...usually after you are admitted to hospital you will have good care, depending on the nurses, some don't care but many are good intelligent caring nurses
    the hospital in shreveport has been revamping clinics to follow appt times and has greatly reduced waiting time...this was true about two years ago..hope that it has continued
    as has been pointed out previously there are vet who served a draft or enlistment of a two or three years and then there are vets who served a career and then retired..benefits are different
    as for strange service connected disabilities i knew this vet who became addicted to drugs in nam...filed claim that it was the stress of war that made him turn to drugs
    p he had a stroke from uppers he was given a pension..bought him a handicap van

    i also know vets who couldn't get a penny,,by the way i didn't know that that the income of the wife was counted when figuring pension..
  10. by   soontobe_RN
    I don't even know where to start about this man!! :angryfire I have to admit, I was one of those people who believed Bush when he said that Irac had Nuclear weapons and that we needed to go to war. This is partly due to the fact that I come from a military family. I have had a memeber of my faimly fight in each and every war. A fact that I am VERY proud of. So, when our president says to fight for our country and help those in need, I was raised to trust him. Well, I can honestly say, that now, I don't beleive a word out of that mans mouth!!! I sat and watched the press conferences that "showed" where the nuclear wepons were. Of course, in the back of my mind, I did question his motives, but I still, foolishly, agreed with what we were doing. Then after time, we find out that there wasn't any nuclear weapons and that some are speculating that he sent us over there to fight an oil war for HIM!!! I watched a documantry that talked about Bush's history. I then realized that he is only in the white house to "make money"!! So, when we started cutting pretty much all funding and then lowered taxes for his (the rich) people, I wasn't surprised.
    My husband and I were talking the other day about how we need to make sure we start a retirement fund b/c when we become of age there will be nothing left!! I am 26y/o and I am affraid of what the future will bring. I just pray to God, that when my children grow up, everything will be o.k again.
    When will the people of this country wake up and see what he is doing to us. Bush does not care about this country or its citizens. Just look at what he is doing to our veterans. These are 18y/o kids who went to fight "HIS" war and now, our dear president is turning his back on them and their families.
    I guess all I can do is Vote, Pray, and teach my children about good and bad!!
    Jennifer
  11. by   Spidey's mom
    Quote from kmchugh
    Deb

    With all due respect, this is where I have a problem with what you are saying. Funds are not being cut. Funding to the VA is increasing. Some programs used for non-service connected people are being cut, but this seems to me to be a necessary step so that more funds are freed up to help veterans with service connected conditions, including those coming home from the current war.

    Kevin McHugh
    Kevin - thanks for bringing us back to the truth.

    steph
  12. by   dbihl
    Quote from soontobe_RN
    I don't even know where to start about this man!! :angryfire I have to admit, I was one of those people who believed Bush when he said that Irac had Nuclear weapons and that we needed to go to war. This is partly due to the fact that I come from a military family. I have had a memeber of my faimly fight in each and every war. A fact that I am VERY proud of. So, when our president says to fight for our country and help those in need, I was raised to trust him. Well, I can honestly say, that now, I don't beleive a word out of that mans mouth!!! I sat and watched the press conferences that "showed" where the nuclear wepons were. Of course, in the back of my mind, I did question his motives, but I still, foolishly, agreed with what we were doing. Then after time, we find out that there wasn't any nuclear weapons and that some are speculating that he sent us over there to fight an oil war for HIM!!! I watched a documantry that talked about Bush's history. I then realized that he is only in the white house to "make money"!! So, when we started cutting pretty much all funding and then lowered taxes for his (the rich) people, I wasn't surprised.
    My husband and I were talking the other day about how we need to make sure we start a retirement fund b/c when we become of age there will be nothing left!! I am 26y/o and I am affraid of what the future will bring. I just pray to God, that when my children grow up, everything will be o.k again.
    When will the people of this country wake up and see what he is doing to us. Bush does not care about this country or its citizens. Just look at what he is doing to our veterans. These are 18y/o kids who went to fight "HIS" war and now, our dear president is turning his back on them and their families.
    I guess all I can do is Vote, Pray, and teach my children about good and bad!!
    Jennifer
    I could not agree with you more Jennifer. :wink2: Continue to keep the faith. ON 9-11, my grilfriend was killed in tower II of the world trade center, yet I never could, and still wont condone the War in Iraq. George Bush was a joke president before 9-11, and after 9-11, I feel, he used his power to alienate so many people who actually felt emapthy for us. It was an extrordinary oppurtunity to change the world and I believe it will eventually when enough people reach a critical mass to make a change. Check out the whatthebleep.com website, it is positive and uplifting, also check out the movie Indigo. If George and his folks don't want to change the world, thats ok, cause we can, one person at a time.
  13. by   SmilingBluEyes
    Ok---I will concede a bit here. But I am far from satisfided. If not a "cut " in actual funds, then perhaps in programs. Benefits. Failure to meet the growing needs of increasing numbers of vets. Word it how you want to. It's still a pinch and a failure for our veterans.

    A cut in the program of any sort without a viable and suitable alternative for vets is not right, ok? And who can say those excluded would be rightfully? WHo judges what is "service-connected " or not? Does this change, too? Yes, I am emotional. but...

    And as I see it, I am seeing the truth, Steph. The truth is, this President talks the talk, but can't seem to walk the walk, when it comes to honoring our military veterans. It's sad, many Presidents seem to follow this trend. Bush is not the first. I can't understand it. They ARE Commander-in-Chief of our Armed Forces, after all.
    Last edit by SmilingBluEyes on May 11, '05

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