To the Editor:

The first headline on Monday reads, “Parents angry at VA after son’s suicide.”

The article goes on to explain that a former veteran of Operation Iraqi Freedom committed suicide after seeking care from the veterans administration in Phoenix for over 20 months.

Unfortunately, this is not surprising as the backlog of VA claims for care and assistance is now legendary even here in Central Texas.

Many of us have given up on VA health care out of frustration.

You simply cannot add thousands of patients into the VA system without first adding doctors, administrators and facilities to handle the load.

We have now been involved in OEF and OIF for over 10 years, yet the VA still has not been adequately funded to keep up with new casualties from these two wars.

This is the problem VA patients are facing as they try to live long enough to get help.

It is often said that businesses and government agencies don’t plan to fail, but they fail to plan.

This is an American tragedy. It is also a harbinger of things to come from Obamacare. You cannot add 30 million people to the health care roles without first building the appropriate infrastructure of doctors, administrators and care facilities to accommodate such growth. If you do, you will overwhelm the existing health care system and create a backlog of claims and patients that will make the VA’s problems look miniscule. This will impact senior citizens the most. Many will not be able to wait out 20 months for treatment.

Politicians say we will cover the increased number of patients with new efficiencies and “tweaking” the system. The French have a word for this and it sounds a lot like BS. When has the government ever been successful or efficient?

Please write, call or email your elected officials and demand that health care be revisited with a plan for short- and long-term growth that makes sense and is properly funded.

Surely, that should not be too hard for our intrepid lawmakers.

You might also ask them why they sought and have been granted subsides for themselves and their staff for health insurance purchased through Obamacare exchanges that will not be available to the rest of us. This sounds like government business as usual to me.

George Van Riper

Harker Heights

(11) comments

Dr Strangelove

Mamma Liberal Griz, I agree glad you see it my way. Since Radical Islamists declared war on the United States President Bush had every right to send our Troops in and attack them. So you must admit they are NOT illegal wars.

Mamma Griz

" The Japanese attacked the US Pacific Fleet at Pearl Harbor, then the US bases in the Philippines. The US declared war on Japan, then a few days later Hitler declared war on the US, followed by a US declaration of war against Germany, and thus US was fully involved in the war".

In other words, we weren't in the war with Germany UNTIL Hitler declared war on the US-- and that declaration of war by Hitler came AFTER war on Japan was declared.

Dr Strangelove

Mamma Liberal Griz, you libs crack me up always blaming the victim. This young man is dead, you blame him and his family your sick—no wonder you support killing babies. This liberal claim about two illegal wars is getting old. According to your way of thinking during WWII we should have never attacked Germany and Italy since they didn’t attack us. Japan attacked us not Germany or Italy; now do you Obama supporters see that your illegal war argument doesn’t fly. Nah you brainwashed liberals will never see.

Mamma Griz

I wonder why so many are complaining about ROMNEYCARE-- they don't know everything about it yet.

And I wonder just how come we have such a backlog at the VA facilities. We wouldn't have such a backlog if we hadn't gotten into useless wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Neither of those people bombed the USA-- not like what happened in WW2 (and yes, I remember WW2). But then, somebody's savior was the one who got us into those wars.

And about the young veteran who killed himself. The family knew he was unstable-- why was a weapon available to him. That's like having a loaded gun where a 4-year-old can get ahold of it.


Mamma Griz, wonder no more as to why "we have such a backlog at the VA facilities."

VA claims workers admitted to concentrating on the “easy” claims to “push their numbers up” so they could receive a piece of the $5.5M given in bonuses. The more complex claims were a hindrance, so they just piled up in a corner somewhere.

Sorry. It has NOTHING to do with Bush OR the wars! Nope. More like a perverse incentive by our government to reward incompetence.

This all happened under the watch of Gen. Shinseki, “Savior” to the democrats, and it’s typical of the way government does business. So, good luck with that “government run” Obomney healthcare deal!

Mamma Griz

Roody2:: I don't have to wonder why we have such a backlog at the VA facilities. You don't know how the VA claims workers do anything, do you.

And as for the two illegal wars, it has everything to do with BUSH and his two ILLEGAL wars.

The mess with the VA has been going on FOR YEARS-- yes, it was a mess when Savior Bush was king and nothing was done about it. Why didn't he do anything about it? Too lazy and/or didn't care!


You ASSUME I "don't know how VA workers do anything.” Actually, it’s irrelevant because I was using VA claims workers’ own words as to the way they said they were handling claims. From that admission I made an open-minded, logical deduction that this was part of the problem. I guess you don’t understand it to be part of the problem because you can’t look past the Republicans and you won’t face the reality that Bush is no longer president.

Instead, you jump to blame Bush for letting the problem go for the “YEARS” he was in office but it’s inconsequential to you that Obama hasn’t done anything about it either. In fact, the problem has gotten worse while he’s been in office.

Mr. Van Riper is spot on with his letter. If the VA were a free market enterprise it would be bankrupt. Failure to plan for the future influx and displeased consumers would have quickly shut their doors. But, since its run by government and they have an endless pit of our tax dollars, they can ignore problems, give bonuses, fail to plan ahead and still remain in business. This is exactly why folks are concerned about Obamacare.

Yes, we had two wars. Yes, Bush was president and the problem existed during that time, also. Both are irrelevant to the predicament today. The dilemma now is our current government is failing to correct an obvious existing problem. Are they “too lazy and/or just don't care”?


The Department of Veterans Affairs has revised their claims processing procedures to expedite processing of all claims. Three categories have been devised. One category is relatively simple claims that are fully developed and can be processed quickly; another is complex claims that require more experienced Veterans Service Representatives (VSR) to process. Appropriately trained and skilled VSR are being assigned to all categories.


I guess you would prefer the Taliban or al Qaeda as a form of government. typical liberal.


The good news is that enrollment in VA health care exempts you from obamacare.


@ You cannot add 30 million people to the health care roles without first building the appropriate infrastructure of doctors, administrators and care facilities to accommodate such growth.-------

The talk and actions toward, bringing so many more into the medical care part of our country's peoples lives,even if those new recipients aren't even inside the country legally. With many of our politicians even arguing their cause.
Shows were loyalty's will lay.
And the true character of the ones who have chosen to go against the majority of the peoples wishes, their own peoples wishes ,even though they have to know, it can only harm them.

@ This will impact senior citizens the most. Many will not be able to wait out 20 months for treatment.------

I believe there's a good chance of the above happening ,
as we were told from the beginning of this idea, which ended being called by many obamacare,
Remember the panels that were talked of? Are they now seeming more realistic even to those who maybe at first, Said No way that would happen.

I talked to my own medical doctor about his thoughts on what the future is to bring to the people IF this Obamacare is completely implemented,
And he didn't have a smile on his face when he answered.
But I had to remember, the doctor has a family to care for and will have to choose to do what is best for his own family. Our doctors are being put in a bind also.

Many of our politicians have chose to think of strangers over their own, or what used to be their own people.
They are now worried more about a bunch of what will turn into, millions of strangers coming into the country.

Remember this, Somewhere it was stated once ,'When the Tides changed'.
The are changing now, unless, The People decide they don't won't to go along with what is coming in the future.

If you are an American, No matter your race, Its time to stand together and raise Holy Heck with the politicians about what you are willing to accept and put up with.
The politicians don't own the country, We the People Do.
The country was left by a few in trust, that the people would take good care of it. Lets not disappoint them.
Call your representatives ,tell them or the ones who answer for them, its time to stop looking out for strangers. When many of the country's true citizens are in need.

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