In A Conservative’s Treatise on American Government, I wrote about the Veterans Administration’s active and deliberate assault on religious freedom, using our veterans as pawns in that effort. In summary form, here’s what I wrote about the VA’s misbehavior in that arena.
At funeral ceremonies in our National Cemeteries, VA management attempted to dictate the permissible content of prayer, presuming to censor a Pastor’s prayer. Following this—on the heels of a Federal judge’s ruling that the government may not and can not determine the content of prayer—a widow was barred altogether from burying her husband in a national cemetery because the honors and ceremonies associated included prayers and actual references to God.
These scandals have been forgotten by an NLMSM that’s also afflicted with AADD.
My recommendation at the time was to remove the National Cemetary System from the VA and place it directly within the DoD for administration by military personnel.
After the revelations of the inexcusably…shoddy…treatment of our veterans by the VA, including (but not at all limited to) 40 or more of our veterans dying while being held on VA waiting lists to get medical treatment, those waiting lists being cynically manipulated so as to make the VA bureaucrats look good (at the direct expense of those veterans they’re charged with supporting), whistle blowers being suppressed and/or reassigned for being too pushy with their concerns; all of that coupled with President Barack Obama’s decision to do nothing about any of that beyond his formulaic chit-chat about being upset over it, this is no longer enough.
The VA must be disbanded altogether, and all of its personnel returned to the private economy.
The VA has a budget including some $61 billion dedicated to “supporting” veterans and their families, $12.6 billion for education benefits, and a total budget of some $140 billion in FY13 for things like VA payroll, building new medical facilities, R&D for veteran-needed prosthetics development, and the like. There are some 21.5 million veterans in the US, currently.
Those $61 billion should be continued as budget items, and paid to our veterans as vouchers. Our veterans and their families are fully capable of determining for themselves what doctors they should see and at what medical facility they should see them. Their treatment régimes are matters to be determined by the veteran and his doctor; the VA has forfeited its…authority…to have input into this. The $12.6 billion should be continued as budget items, and paid to our veterans as vouchers, also. This is, largely, what happens today; it should be continued.
The remainder of the $140 billion should be continued as budget items, and used to plus up the vouchers paid to our injured veterans.
The VA’s current 170 medical centers and 350 clinics should be returned to the private sector, where competent management will improve these facilities’ ability to serve our veterans—and which increase in the supply of such medical facilities also will have the salutary effect of holding down the cost growth rates of services provided to all Americans by the increased number of medical centers and clinics, if not actually reducing those costs.