By: E&P Staff
In today’s links, praise for Joe Galloway’s column about the conditions in the Walter Reed military hospital, and readers respond to E&P’s New York Times preview of an interview with Suze Orman
Joe Galloway and the Walter Reed Hospital Scandal
As a father of a son serving in Afghanistan I was so moved by Joe Galloway’s article.
It was coming from his heart and it hit mine. I felt anger and sadness at the same time. His message is the message so many families are feeling who have loved ones serving in the military. We feel that our troops and their families are being called upon to do so much and to give so much by those in political power that I wonder how many of them even understand the personal, physical, and mental cost that these young men and women are bearing upon their noble shoulders.
While millions of dollars are wasted and misused why must those who want to serve their country be short-changed or even neglected by those who have sent them in harms way. They truly deserve better. While finger pointing and smugness seem to be the way many deal with the neglect of our service members I hope there will be a day when they are held accountable. They must and the people of this great land must rise up and do it.
You had me believing that you yourself truly cared about the men and women of our armed forces with your seemingly eloquent editorial about Walter Reed Hospital. Alas, you too took your opportunity to make a political statement … shame on you!
We are all to blame for the conditions and the treatment our troops have to endure at the will of our politicians. Democrats and Republicans alike voted to send our boys to war. Both parties had members on whatever subcommittee that oversees conditions of facilities for the treatment and care of veterans and they both did nothing.
You started out with a noble column that quickly eroded into a political statement. You needn’t be ashamed … I am enough for both of us.
I concur with everything that Mr. Galloway said but have more to add.
It is one thing to imply that the elected and appointed officials are at fault. Yes they are. But the commander is responsible for everything that his unit does or fails to do. Where was the CG of Walter Reed when this happened?
I have heard all of the arguments about how Walter Reed did not have enough money to fulfill all of its maintainance requirements. A day after the Washington Post expose’ they apparently found the money.
This is more than a disgrace. It is a crime.
Vincent E. Falter
Major General, Retired
Joe hit it right on the head. I’m an Army vet, but I never saw combat so I can’t relate to my poor brothers returning from Iraq, wounded or not. As disgusting as it is, when has it ever been any different in the history of the U.S.? From the Revolutionary War to now, our government has a disgraceful track record caring for the vets who came back wounded. How can you change the attitude of a nation as divided as ours to have proper priorities when Anna Nicole gets 24/7 coverage in the midst of all the world’s problems? As any other great democracy in history has met its fate, I now regard ours as a lost cause. We are on the downhill slope toward disintegration and irrelevance.
In regards to the article, Galloway: Walter Reed Hospital Scandal is ‘The Last Straw,’ thank you. As a military service person, I truly appreciate someone speaking the truth. I hope that others will be able to see the truth as you have clearly stated.
Sgt. Christine Gonzales
I had no idea that our injured troops were being treated so inhumanely. It truly must be the last straw! I did not enlist in the army for various reasons, probably more to do with fear than anything else. But one reason in particular would be the realization I had early on that military recruiters were lying to me when they came to my door. That the government, since Vietnam and probably before, has a habit of lying to young men, coaxing them with visions of fighting for God and country, when in reality it seems that our troops really only fight for a small percentage of well off people or rather, the corporations they represent.
And now this is another story that proved me right. Sick.
The entire veterans administration is in need of total reform. The so-called County Administrators do little, if anything to ensure our veterans (of all wars) get proper benefits or medical care. It starts at that level and moves through the entire system. The care is perhaps only marginal and not available for all veterans. The Veterans Administration medical facilities both hospitals and clinics, should be shut down, and all veterans should be given an identification card, similiar to an insurance card, so that the veterans can seek medical aid from their own selected physicians and in their own local clinics and hospitals. This would ensure local treatment and do away with the need to transport the veterans to far away facilities. Financial savings may well take place, plus putting additional funds in the local medical areas.
As a Navy veteran, I am well aware of the string of excuses and failed promises that were made to our military and it sickens me. I supported Mr. Bush and even gave him the benefit of the doubt when he stated the reasons for initially invading Iraq. The resultant consequences of that support and the failure of those in charge continue to haunt me and always will. Yet I see no real desire by the Democrat’s to go beyond petty political “gotcha’s”. They continue wasting time and treasury on resolutions that are solely for the purpose of embarrassing the President and to what end. The Republican’s were thrown out because of very similar non-sense. Veteran benefits are an easy target for redirecting our treasury to federal mandates and programs and forgetting about those who have paid for it with their limbs and lives. If the politicians want to establish a form of universal healthcare, I suggest the trial it on veterans first. God knows they have earned it! Thank you Mr. Galloway for writing this article. I can only hope that our elected officials will not be so willing to forget that they and their decisions are directly responsible for fiasco you have documented.
North Canton, Ohio
As a 19 year-old combat veteran of the US Marine Corps in WWII, I laud you for your recent column in Editor & Publisher.
We can only hope that someday the truth will come out about the misdeeds of the Chicken-hawks in the present administration.
Yes, there are shoddy activities and facilities within the USA government’s sphere of authority. But with the magnitude of government operations, such is very probable. As citizens we simply expect way too much from our government. The government is run by people, most who have their own agendas, and from whom perfection is simply not possible. Most are people, not super heroes. The FEMA response to the Katrina hurricane is a case in point. Just now, the situation at Walter Reed has been uncovered. There are many other problems, some which are visible and some, like the rats in restaurants O.K.’d by health officials, are currently out of sight.
So, let’s come to grips with the reality that although our government likes to assure us that all is well, all is not well. We have given these people in government “blank checks” to take care of problems. In many cases, the problems grow, either because of indifference or incompetence, or both. So, who’s at fault? These people to whom we’ve assigned this incomprehensible mix of tasks? Or to us, the citizens, who think that we’ve transferred our responsibilities to a cadre of “super heroes”?
I am a Combat Veteran from Vietnam. I receive 100% service connected disability awarded just 2 years ago. My care with the Veterans Administration is outstanding they withhold nothing in the way of tests and care. Very rarely do I find a VA employee that does not treat the Veteran with utmost respect.
But there is a huge problem! Getting that care is very difficult as it seems the Veterans Administration is overwhelmed. It takes usually a month to get seen and when seen I will be at a facility for hours. Then I have to wait for the follow-up. Although I am covered 100 % I feel that I must maintain outside coverage as well due to the time it takes to be seen. This costs our family about $ 500.00 per month plus deductibles etc.
We need to do what it takes to give our current and future Veterans well cared for.
Dennis Mahoney Mina
(for more letters about the Galloway column, click here)
So Suze Ormond Is a Virgin…
Wouldn’t that make her a “technical virgin” instead of an actual virgin? As a gay man I have never been with a woman, but I wouldn’t call myself a virgin.
Perhaps I am getting into to TMI territory here, but I really think Orman’s comment borders on the brink between self-loathing and self-imposed homophobia. Also, is the first time that Orman has talked publicly about her sexuality?
She didn’t reveal she is a virgin, she only revealed she is a lesbian! Sex is sex!
If alleged financial guru Suze Orman cannot find an estate planning structure which avoids this ostensible 50% loss upon the death of either, she should not be regarded as a financial guru.
It seems to me that she is avoiding the legal and estate planning apparatus in order to,” hold on,” for that marriage certificate, which will ostensibly do the very same thing as the available estate planning measures. This is a political statement each one is in a pact with the other to make.
One wonders if this woman also votes Democrat, a party notoriously fond of the estate tax.
Define — or should I say redefine — “virgin!”
It’s laughable to report that a lesbian is a virgin. No one has to use much imagination to realize why that statement is so absurd. Please report things as they are.
Huntington Beach, Calif.
I can summarize this article with one word, “Yawn.” First off, no one really cares about “Suze” Orman … she’s just a financial stiff, right? Secondly, I guarantee you that no one cares about her sexual life. Asking “Suze” about sex is like asking an actor what he/she thinks about international politics?the actor (whose education probably stopped after high school) should be the last person you interview regarding politics, just as “Suze” should be one of the last people you ask questions about sex.
I suppose I should expect “verbal fluff” from mathematical idiots like yourselves. Next time, try getting a meaningful degree.