In Trump’s mad dash to accomplish anything in his first 100 days, he is giving his signature hand a workout. He is signing executive orders just so he can say the phrase “executive order”. He will be signing one for the veterans on Thursday (and will likely wave it near his pompous head). He did promise to take care of them, after all.
This order will create an office that will be responsible for more accountability of wrongdoing at the Department of Veteran Affairs. The office will investigate allegations of misconduct and will allow leaders to more effectively address disciplinary issues. Basically, it is a corruption investigation office.
VA Secretary David Shulkin told reporters:
Accountability is an important issue to us at VA and something that we’re focusing on to make sure that we have employees who work and are committed to the mission of serving our veterans, and when we find employees that have deviated from these values, we want to make sure that we can move them outside of VA and not have them working at VA.
Well, no shit, David. Yes, accountability is important – I mean, there definitely needs to be more of it in the VA (Washington, too, I might add). However, the VA already has an Office of Accountability Review that was created in 2014! It has found veterans waiting too long for care, equipment shortages and dirty storage areas. In addition, it found that veterans are not receiving appropriate or adequate mental health care.
To be fair, Trump did grant an extension to a program allowing veterans with logistic problems to see doctors of their choice – by about four months. While that is alright for now, there are a lot of hoops to jump through to qualify and it’s not a permanent solution. Veterans need more facilities – some have to drive hours to get to one, and then are often referred to another where they have to drive even further distances. Have you tried traveling when you are sick? Have you tried traveling when you are broke because you are sick? It is hell on wheels.
Veterans want better doctors, services, access and sterile fucking equipment. They want their country to lay it all on the line for them like they did for it. They want action, not more of the same redundancy . Veterans want what they were promised: that their country will take care of them for sacrifices already made.