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When I enlisted in the Army during the Vietnam War era, and re-enlisted again in 1976, then joined the National Guard in 1988 and was federalized when the First Gulf War began in November 1990 and was kept until the unit was deactivated in May 1991 at Fort Stewart, Ga.

I became totally disabled by service connected medical conditions in June 2002, and like  other workers I paid my federal and state income taxes  from 1973-2002 but then my body failed me and my earnings stopped. But my battles with my government were far from over, the fun and games at being  taken care of by my grateful nation became a full time battle for my wife and I. Nothing about it was "easy" the people at the VA Regional Offices I assure you are great stewards of the nations money,  if you can show you are  100% disabled they will try and get away with granting you 50% and hope that makes you happy and you will go away. It works with some veterans and they give up  and don't want to spend the next 2-3 years fighting  for more as they will be accused of being greedy.

Mitt, just so maybe someone will explain this to you, as I doubt you would actually spend time reading an article on  Daily Kos  a known liberal hotbed full of the 47% that will never vote for you.

But, I did not take the 50% rating award they granted me in April 2005, I filed a Notice of Disagreement the very next day, stating that I disagreed with the denial of my cardiac issues and only being granted 50% for PTSD as my psychiatrist had stated that despite my other medical issues (cardiac) that he still considered me totally and permanently disabled just by the symptoms of my service connected PTSD.

It took another year and another C&P exams for  PTSD and cardiac, the VA thought so much of my cardiac problems that they used a nurse practiotoner to do the C&P exam and then had the staff M.D. sign off as he supervised it, I never saw him but his signature made it legal.  This time the award letter granted me 100% P&T for PTSD with no future exams necessary, this was in May 2006 and they paid me back pay to Dec 2002.  

But me being the ungrateful leach that I am, I again filed a Notice of Disagreement over the cardiac issues, I have had a stroke in April 1992 within a year of being discharged from the Army after the first Gulf War. My first heart attack happened in Feb 92, in Feb 97 I had a heart attack at work, I was a letter carrier, the VA did a triple bypass (they sent me a bill for 3,000.00 since I was NOT SC yet for any cardiac issues and was then a category 8 veteran)

In Feb 2009 we had a hearing with a Board of Veteran Appeals Court Judge, more than 7 years after I initially filed my claim for compensation, we spent about 30 minutes overall with the Judge, his most concern is that I felt that he heard all of my complaints and that did I think he had all the facts he needed to make a decision on my claim, I told him that my lawyer had gone thru the entire file and she stated it was all there,  including 2 opinions from private doctors I had seen along with my treatment records and 2 IME from M>D.s that had seen my military and civilian medical records and offered their professional opinions, so I had 4  professional doctors supporting my case for service connection  with their basis and reasons for justification.

On April 7, 2009 we received the letter from the BVA Judge granting my claim for Coronary Artery Disease and hypertension and my claim file was being sent back to VARO Columbia SC where they would assign  compensation percentages. Just for spite they granted 60% for CAD despite my ejection fraction of 25%, and 10% for hypertension  which is the correct percentage as my medication controls it.

In 2011  my heart had a bout with a mild heart attack on 9 April and then on April 11 while still in the hospital I had a major heart attack, I spent a week in a drug induced coma and then was sent to MUSC to be worked up for either a VLAD device or a heart transplant, but my heart was failing and there was no surgery available to repair it, no bypqass or stents, the transplant team ruled me out for any type of procedures and my wife was told to take me home or they could arrange for me to be sent to the VA until I passed.  Luckily my wife took me home.

In September the VA docs decided that I could have a pacemaker/defib device installed which would improve the possibility of my living longer, being the selfish bastard that I am I agreed to the surgery, I had just turned 56 and I really wanted to keep breathing.

Mitt, I am NOT a victim, I am a survivor, my medical care was paid for with my military service under the famous PROMISE if I was killed or damaged by my military service, I also paid my taxes so my SSD was also an insurance policy that was taken from my military checks, my post office checks, the night job I had delivering pizzas for Papa Johns. I averaged 20 hour work days, my best year was 78,000 and I paid over 20,000 in federal and state taxes. I might not have been rich, but I earned my way thru life  and I owe no one an apology for my now being disabled.

When you see a disabled veteran, you need to thank them rather than thinking in your twisted mind that we are nothing more than moochers. The sad part of it is, how many of those same people YOU called "those people" are conservatives and will vote for you regardless of this statement. Many people will vote against their own best interests, electing you will harm all retired military people, your party has a poor record of caring for veterans, any changes made to Social Security surely will NOT be in favor of the masses, do changes need to be made, yes obviously the  system needs some tewweks  but not major overhauls, raise the wage caps on medicare, but you don't care about the 47% so your policies will be harmful to us, I expect nothing less.

Hopefully you will fall flat on your face during the  debates, I really do not want you as my President, I wish we could  bring Nixon back from the dead and  put him in your place, maybe he could go to Iran like he did China, we know you aren't capable of anything like that, you have no spine.

Originally posted to testvet6778 on Tue Sep 18, 2012 at 11:46 PM PDT.

Also republished by Military Community Members of Daily Kos and DKos Military Veterans.

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Comment Preferences

  •  I wish you could send it to him. (7+ / 0-)

    Or that your diary could be read to him at some public event.

    Everything you said is absolutely correct.

    •  He would not hear it (5+ / 0-)

      In isolated communities, the members tend to create their own reality.  In the Trayvon Martin case, the gated community had convinced itself that they were under siege from criminal elements though the Sanford, FL gated community in reality had common garden variety crimes with a crime rate in line with what would be expected.

      The country club set has the same bunker mentality or Antoinette Complex, if you will, where they envision hordes of torch carrying peasants storming their golfing Bastilles and threatening their extremely comfortable life style.
      They see themselves as deserving of their affluence and view all others as parasites.  Call it a Bourbon Complex.

      However, the resources they consume annually would support 2000 families in comfort for that year.  The brutal math of this line of thought is that for some reason, they are worth more than 2000 families of their countrymen

  •  I know several vets who came back from (9+ / 0-)

    Desert Storm with medical problems as they were patients at our clinic.  One condition we found were types of dermatitis or other similar condition which came from tiny burrowing insects similar to "no-see-ums".  There were many other conditions which were new to the clinic's docs, though one was double boarded in IM and ID with a sub-specialty in tropical diseases.  He was baffled by many of the diseases.

    A later doc had served for 25 years in the Air Force at various foreign duty stations and he was baffled as well by many of the conditions.

    In the meantime, the VA denied that such conditions existed.  Even if a condition was labeled with a dx, they would argue that such a dx did not exist or that the pt did not have that dx but a different one.

    For some of us it was deja vue reminiscent of battles with the VA over PTSD circa 1974 or the effects of Agent Orange where the impression left by the VA was that they were gatekeepers (which they were) but gatekeepers with a mission of limiting access to their services.  Maybe this impression was wrong but many of our pts had this impression.

    I wish you good luck with your battles with the bureaucracy; last year I finally won my case with SSDI and the ALJ even backdated my disability to 2007. (yep it took that long to get my disability recognized and those were lean years with little or no income as I was caught in the Catch-22 of not being documented as disabled but unable to work........believe me I tried to work during that time but found no work that I could do)
    Again good luck as I have found there is never total victory with the bureaucracy but rather a series of small victories

  •  it's all about the projection. (4+ / 0-)

    Projection is the classic rightwinger psychological defense mechanism:

    Takers accusing others of being takers.

    Moochers accusing others of being moochers.

    Recipients of bank bail-outs talking about "welfare queens" and "SSI cadets."

    The whole nine yards.  

    And now we see, Unfit Mitt hanging out with a guy who holds orgiastic celebrations to the gods Bacchus and Dionysius at his mega-mansion, so it's one more case of prurient prudes with bad attitudes.  

    Wait 'til his college roommate comes out blabbing about fellatio.  

    "You say fell-lay-tio, and I say fell-lah-toe...!"

    Laughter is also medicine.

    Hang in there, yo.  Every day of life is a victory.

    "Minus two votes for the Democrat" equals "plus one vote for the Republican." Arithmetic doesn't care about your feelings.

    by G2geek on Wed Sep 19, 2012 at 12:51:03 AM PDT

  •  Schadenfreude. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    testvet6778, llbear

    We tend to associate that word with a feeling of delight at someone else's plight because the misfortune is somehow deserved.  It has a whiff of comeuppance with it.
    However, some people, and Willard seems to be one of them, just take delight in other people's misery, regardless of whether they had anything to do with it, because it makes them feel good. That is, their schadenfreude is pure pleasure, like some people get from watching the sun rise out of the ocean.
    I suspect Willard is one of those people.  They delight in other people's misery, not because "misery loves company," but because they just love misery.
    Is that ghoulish?  I'd say so.  I've been nattering about deprivators for some time. Deprivators like taking away other people's rights (human and property). But that involves some effort. Willard's ilk prefer to do nothing but watch.
    I suppose that's consistent with the vicarious existence the idea guy prefers.
    (Why, do you think, Ann keeps referring to Willard as a guy when she's not referring to him as "Governor"?)

    Anyway, Willard's love of misery may well account for why the sons keep telling the Seamus story. Their Dad likes to hear the dog's misery recounted.
    If so, then all those stories of people displaced and people suffering as a consequence of Willard's financial machinations bring comfort to his soul. And that accounts for his smirk.

    "Misery loves company." Some people just love misery.

    We organize governments to provide benefits and prevent abuse.

    by hannah on Wed Sep 19, 2012 at 03:07:43 AM PDT

    •  my dad loved Mitts dad his father (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      llbear, Actbriniel

      was a real autoworker and he took care of his employees  my dad supported him when he ran for Governor of Michigan   I don't think my dad could even accept  this man as being  George Romney's son  who  wrote that op-ed "let Detroit go bankrupt"

      we moved to Calif in 63 after my Dad was forced to retire from GM after a car came off the assembly line and nearly amputated my dads left leg. He was retired and  he was put on SSD which back then was a very new program  my Dad was only 63  so he  wasn't 65 yet, but  the doctors signed the papers and we sold our home and left for Calif, we moved to a town called Riverside  when I miss it I turn on the news and something bad is always happ;ening there cops shooting someone, bank robberies, cops beating people  etc  

      we buried Dad in Riverside in 1972  and Mom remarried and she died in 96 and we buried her at  Riverside National Cemetary in 1996 and my step father in Sep 2000  and I haven't been back since   my younger brother moved to NC and my older brother lives in Atlanta  and I retired in Columbia SC    I plan on being buried at Fort Jackson National Cemetary  it's 10 miles from the house

      •  I drive by Columbia all the time when I'm (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        testvet6778, llbear

        Coming back to Georgia from up north. I never stop because I'm just over two hours from home. You should come down to St. Simons and visit. It's nothing like Riverside or Oceanside and the water never gets as warm as on the SC shore. We're much further from the Gulf Stream.

        We organize governments to provide benefits and prevent abuse.

        by hannah on Wed Sep 19, 2012 at 05:14:04 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  My son's basic was at Fort Jackson (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        and he is currently stationed out of Fort Stewart.  Small world..  

        Great diary testvet - just wish the people who really need to hear this (you listening Mittens?) could have it put in front of their faces.

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