FINALLY, someone in Congress does something right

Discussion in 'Off Topic' started by Bullet, Jun 27, 2013.

  1. Bullet

    Bullet Member

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    Don't always agree with her politics, but boy oh boy did Rep Duckworth do her job today. Background: Guy she is taking to task went to USMA prep school, hurt his ankle playing football there, and got out. Eventually went on to play QB at San Diego State. He has since claimed VA benefits for medical disability, 30 % disability, which also got him VA Small Business Preference.

    Watch her reaction to his "claims" HERE

    The only thing missing from this awesome video is the reaction shot from this "veteran". Would have been awesome to see him continually tugging on his tie as he shrinks to 2 inches tall.

    Awesome job, Congresswoman!:thumb:
     
  2. goaliedad

    goaliedad Parent

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    Pretty hard for the Chairman of the committee to argue with her going overtime either at the end of the clip...
     
  3. kinnem

    kinnem Moderator

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    Thanks Bullet. First you got my attention with that subject line that I first assumed couldn't possibly be true! Wow! She tore him to pieces and yet was very ladylike and polite. And who better to do it than Rep. Duckworth! Thanks for the post. Interesting video.
     
  4. LineInTheSand

    LineInTheSand USCGA 2006

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    I know a current CG employee who was kicked out of the Coast Guard Academy after only 2 years but because he was a cadet during the Gulf War period, he got veterans preference applying to federal jobs.
     
  5. Bullet

    Bullet Member

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    I know a certain Congresswoman who doesn't seem to have an issue telling him exactly how she feels about that.:rolleyes:

    Ultimately, he's the one who has to look into the mirror and justify his actions to himself about it. Personally, I hope he cringes every time he does.
     
  6. AF6872

    AF6872 Member

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    And the Ninth Circle is too good for this moron. He had the gall to answer that he deserved his disability status. God save America. Duckworth would get my vote no matter what her politics.
     
  7. EDelahanty

    EDelahanty Member

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    You would think she might have cut him some slack. After all, he said he wasn't well (though somehow it doesnt seem like there was a safe answer to her asking him how he was feeling).

    In any case, Rep. Duckworth is a formidable women who chased Crazy Joe Walsh out of Congress and back to the Eagles. Oh, not that Joe Walsh? Never mind, then.
    _________________________________________________________________

    My Maserati
    Does one eighty five
    I lost my license'
    Now I don't drive
     
  8. MedB

    MedB Parent

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    Outstanding
     
  9. DHinNH

    DHinNH USMA 1989

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  10. sprog

    sprog Member

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    Out of my own interest, where would you guys draw the line as to what service should qualify someone for VA Compensation?
     
  11. pathnottaken

    pathnottaken Member

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    Thank for this link!!!


    I had to say h--- yeah at the end when she thanked chair for allowing her to go over and he replied "...it was time well spent"
     
  12. sprog

    sprog Member

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    That's what it is now. Since SA mids/cadets are on AD (and so are the prep school people), that counts as well.

    You would keep it the same as now save for excluding time spent in an SA (or prep school)? Or include the SA time?

    I get the sentiment that SA cadets are "just in college," but there is a fair amount of physical/military training too. I'm sure many people are not retained because of a medical disability they incur at the school. It could be something as severe as you noted with the Marine recruit.
     
    Last edited: Jun 28, 2013
  13. hornetguy

    hornetguy USAFA Cadet

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    This guy got injured playing prep football, but managed to play several years of football at San Diego after without a problem and has decided that the injury is service related so he deserves the VA disability.

    I get the sense she was incredulous at this fact. That he claimed injury but managed to play ball for years where the injury could have really been from or was the true aggravating reason - but it still earned him 30% disability.

    Should a person claiming disability for an injury be eligible to continue receiving compensation for that injury if their actions either suggest the injury is less severe or if they choose to engage in non-military related activities that result in further severity of the injury?
     
  14. sprog

    sprog Member

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    As a lay person, he can't make the nexus between the current ankle disability and the in-service injury. A doctor or some other healthcare expert must have done so at some point. I'm not sure as to when the 30% rating was granted. I'm guessing not for quite some time after service.

    You can get a reduction in the percentage of compensation if the evidence shows improvement. It happens, but it's fairly rare. As far as nonservice factors aggravating the service-connected disability? It pretty much happens in every case just with aging. I mean, every veteran engages in nonmilitary activities once they separate from service. Walking down the street might aggravate a service-connected knee. Say a guy gets SC granted in 1970 for his knee at a 10% eval. He does ok, for the most part, and only has flare-ups of pain that make him take Ibuprofen from time to time. He can still go golfing and walk to his office in the city. The years go by, and those activities, plus the aging process, add up and he now has severe arthritis. He needs a total knee replacement. He files for an increase and gets a higher rating effective to when he filed his claim for an increase in 2012.

    Seems ok to me.
     
    Last edited: Jun 28, 2013
  15. hornetguy

    hornetguy USAFA Cadet

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    True, true. :) I guess, but we need to walk, we don't need to play football. I don't know, this is obviously a really hard topic to figure out.

    I got to do some work on RAND projects related to IDES and the disability systems for VA and DoD. It's a total mess (no shock right). The news has made light of some of the big problems now - vets (both new and old) are being encouraged to claim as much as possible and literally being told to milk it. Average claimed conditions is going way up, from something like 1-2 on averaged post-WWII to over a dozen now. And it's not veterans just trying to get everything, they are being encouraged by doctors, lawyers and veterans' groups to shotgun it. How can you stop that?
     
  16. sprog

    sprog Member

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    Sure.

    It's a very hard question. Hard to know where to draw the line.

    I think that is why the system is so inclusive. And, with such a permissive system, there are going to be those "are you shi%%ing me?" claims that get granted, but I think it's the price we have to pay.
     
  17. hornetguy

    hornetguy USAFA Cadet

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    I'm inclined to side with your sentiment. The problem I see is how people are *****ing and yelling about the VA system and the backlog. If you want to reduce that backlog, increase VA funding and allow them to hire more claims agents. Sure there's waste in the system, but they need more people with more claims.

    1) Status quo: Claim time grows or stays large
    2) Reduce benefits: make the requirements more stringent for benefits - risk many veterans not getting the aid they need but maybe reduce amount of those 'milking' the system.
    3) Blank check it and provide much higher funding to get the system flowing better (people, software, whatever).

    If Congress and people are going to continue *****ing about the claims time and how we aren't taking care of those who serve, then vote and give the system greater funding to fix it. Can't have your cake and eat it (expecting more and not paying).

    /rant over. Apologies.
     
  18. USMCGrunt

    USMCGrunt Member

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    Looking for clarification:

    I get the complaints about level of disability. From 5% - 100% and this guy is getting 30%.

    But he qualifies for the Small Business Administration loan based on any level of disability.

    So what was the hearing about? His SBA loan or the fact he is getting 30%? The fact he is using the system to his advantage or that there are obvious shortcomings in the current process?

    (I haven't been able to view the link yet)

    Thanks
     
  19. DHinNH

    DHinNH USMA 1989

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    Interestingly, the House Committee report says on page 18 that, according to the VA:

    "Time spent at USMAPS and West Point is considered training, not active duty."

    I was dumbfounded by that, but it is footnoted as coming from a briefing by VA senior administrator.
     
  20. sprog

    sprog Member

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    It was an Oversight Committee hearing regarding some questionable practices of an IRS contractor. I'm not sure what they are specifically.

    The link addresses how the guy got special Veteran's preference for his business. Essentially, because of his SC disability (from USMAPS), he was able to get his business identified as a "Service-Disabled Veteran-Owned Small Business", which gets him an advantage in bidding.

    Rep. Duckworth was ticked that his sole service was playing football in the prep school, and that an injury sustained while doing that was the basis for his rating and the eligibility for the program.

    http://dailycaller.com/2013/06/26/v...ntractor-bad-faith-veterans-disability-claim/
     

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