The Washington Post is back today with another story about the pitfalls of the military health care system. Like I said when the WaPo series was launched, these failures are damnable–and nothing new. David Bernstein at The Volokh Conspiracy adds:
If private companies had mismanaged outpatient care for veterans the way the V.A. system has, there would be strong calls from all the usual quarters for a government takeover, and proclamations of how we can’t trust “greedy” for-profit companies to take care of veterans. Funny how this thought process doesn’t seem to work in reverse, except among “free market ideologues,” who have been criticizing the V.A. for years.
Will the Bush-bashers join with free-market critics to effect real change and help the troops who need and deserve better care?
Top Army officials are likely to feel some serious congressional heat this morning, as a pair of House committees hold hearings on the long-term care scandal at Walter Reed Army Medical Center. The House Oversight and Government Reform Committee’s national security subcommittee, as well as the defense subcommittee of the House Appropriations Committee, both have hearings slotted for today on the ongoing scandal.
The controversy, triggered by a Washington Post expose into conditions for long-term patients at Walter Reed, may spread outside of the hospital and into other military health care facilities. Today’s Post reports on ‘troubling stories’ that soldiers share from military health care facilities across the country.
Update: Note to haters….
I know perfectly well that Walter Reed is not part of the VA system. Duh. Try clicking all the links below and actually reading all the way through. The old cartoon featured above is a reinforcement of the inconvenient fact that problems with military health care–active-duty and veterans alike–have existed long before Bush/Cheney ever took office. The latest meme from the left is that “privatization,” not government mismanagement, is to blame. But to the extent that privatization of some services has had an adverse impact on care, here’s an inconvenient truth: Outsourcing began under Clinton in 2000. He set the ball in motion.
You wanna start blaming him now? Knock yourselves out. Just don’t pretend you really care about how the troops are treated and how best to get them the care they all need and deserve.
George Stephanopoulos: Ronald Klain is the communications and management expert government needs (wasn’t Obama supposed to be?)
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