Printed Letters: September 14, 2016

VA health care system works very effectively
In the aftermath of the nilitary presidential candidate’s forum, I am so tired of hearing VA bashing by presidential candidates or anyone else. I have been using VA health care for a little over a decade in Anchorage, Seattle, and in Grand Junction.

Without a failure, the care has been very good, wait times have been almost non-existent, and the electronic medical records tie it all together throughout the system. Hopefully you get my point; the VA health care system works very effectively and efficiently from my perspective. I could give many examples of short wait times for appointments, medical professionals who went an extra mile to be sure I understood what was going on throughout my treatments and an overall system I rate with an “A” or even “A+” grade.

If any veterans using the health care services in Grand Junction think they are not being well served, I will make one suggestion and one offer. I suggest you try to get similar treatment in the non-VA health care world and see how long it takes, how responsive they are and what your end result will be.

More realistic than you following the suggestion above, you are welcome to contact me and I would be willing to talk with you about your experience with the VA. To the fullest extent that can be allowed, I would also be willing to act as your volunteer advocate to help you get the best out of the system, like I feel the system has given me.


It is time to stop turning a blind eye to abuse
This morning I was appalled to read online about the death of yet another disabled child at the hands of their caretaker — in this case his own mother!

As a person employed in a mental health related field, I am regularly faced with the grim reality of abuse among the mentally ill and disabled populations — something that is rarely addressed in media.

I feel compelled to write today, not just because of the tragedy of this boy’s death, but also because of the way this type of death is so often discussed in media. Online, on the radio, and on television these murders of disabled and/or mentally ill people by their caretakers and/or family are consistently described in terms of the poor, poor killer who was subjected to the inconvenience of this person’s very existence. This is absolutely evil.

This boy — Austin Anderson — allegedly spent days begging his mother to take him home while she watched him slowly die of heat exhaustion and dehydration. She allegedly brought him out to the middle of nowhere, wearing a diaper, and forced him out of the car and waited for him to die.
A parent has one job: to care for their offspring. If a parent is unable to do so, they can seek help and resources, and can cede the responsibility over their child to a person or agency that can provide that care.

It is time to stop turning a blind eye to abuse. People with disabilities are people, too, and it is time that we stop ignoring this fact.


Grand Junction

America’s relationships with every country are strained

It seems the president is considering a veto to the legislation giving the right of 9/11 families the right to sue Saudi Arabia claiming his concern for the already “strained” relationship we have with them.

Apparently the president is unaware of the fact that over the last seven years, our relationships have become strained with every country in the world. His administration has alienated our friends, allies, and enemies alike, even our oldest long-term good relationships with countries such as Britain, Israel, and Germany. However, apparently he feels if we keep giving our enemies more money and apologizing they will love us again. Let’s hope with a new president in four months the healing will begin!

Grand Junction

Unlike Hillary, Trump will 
put Americans first

Many people are unhappy with our choices for president. But allowing Hillary to become president is the worst choice of all.

Our next president will appoint one or more Supreme Court justices. Those who value gun rights, the Constitution, common sense and freedom will be out of luck with Clinton’s choices. Supreme Court justices are appointed for life. What would our country look like after 20 years with Hillary’s Supreme Court? Trump has released a list of his candidates for Justice Scalia’s replacement. Every one of them is better than anyone Clinton would choose.

I once voted for a third-party candidate. I showed my discontent with the two parties, but third-party votes probably shifted that election to the candidate I really didn’t want. Please don’t waste your vote like that.

I believe that Trump will put Americans first. We already know that Hillary won’t. Protect America. Vote Trump.



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Wednesday’s editorial (“Trust deficit on both sides of election”) and the accompanying letters to the editor aptly demonstrate why Hillary Clinton’s reference to the “basket of deplorables” who support Donald Trump accurately captures the prevailing reality.

While the editorial’s headline implies a false equivalency between the candidates’ “trust deficits”, its narrative tells a different story.  Clinton’s is largely the product of incessant partisan propaganda fueled by bogus “investigations”, while Trump’s reflects the antics of a pathological liar. 

The editorial cites Politifacts’ finding that Trump spouts almost three times more “lies” than Clinton, but failed to note that she routinely corrects her exaggerations and/or misstatements, while he stubbornly repeats them—knowing that his “base” cares little about facts, much less media “fact checkers” (who also found that a recent Trump ad told a lie every four seconds, and that he spouted 173 falsehoods during NBC’s “Commander-in-Chief Forum”).

Doug Van Etten’s letter (“VA health care system works effectively”) suggests that Trump ignorantly bashes the VA, while Clinton grasps the difference between the quality of care actually delivered and the “wait times” attributable to understaffing and new enrollments arising from two perpetual wars, expanded eligibility, and the
“individual mandate”.

L.W. Hunley’s letter (“America’s relationship with every country are strained”) ignores the legal implications of weakening the Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act – which even Republican experts predict will produce a “backlash” and further “strain” those relations,, and forgets that the 9/11 families who would sue Saudi Arabia received an average $1.8 million each from U.S. taxpayers.

Eckert’s self-styled “expert” Angie May (“Unlike Hillary, Trump will put America first”) should consider the more authoritative opinion of Gen. Colin Powell that Trump is not only a “racist”, but also a “national disgrace” and an “international pariah”.  Birds of a feather stick together.

Since Mr. Hugenberg apparently thinks his idol’s, “basket of deplorables” comment is appropriate I offer the Washington Compost’s opinion on Trump’s response to it.

If the shoe fits, wear it—and see

I know it’s awful to pick on the disabled, but when she won’t admit it she’s still fair game.

Ms. Kneisel.

You go to “she has a bout with pneumonia” to Ms. Clinton being disabled.  I would ask you if, because you wear glasses, you consider yourself “disabled”?  Sorry, Ms. Kneisel, but it would appear that you have a tendency to exaggerate quite frequently, and almost always with “bad information”.  That, Ms. Kneisel, goes by another term.  It is called “gossip”.

Ms. Many “believes” that Trump would put “America first”.  That is nice but rather meaningless, nor does it even reflect Mr. Trump’s own record, in both personal or business matters, both of whom reflect that “Trump always puts Trump first”.  So, we can only conclude that Ms. Many believes Trump because he says “believe me”.  Much like many believe “FOX” is “fair and balance” because they said so. 

On the other hand Ms. Many, can Ms. Many “place America first” or does she place Ms. Many and her own interests first, with anything else but a distant second (or even further down)in her “list of priorities?  Judging from her past letters to our local media outlets, one can conclude (and without much doubt)that the case is the latter.

Mr. van Etten is quite correct, that he VA does work quite effectively, considering the limited resources and outdated information system it has to contend with.  But, those are not the fault of the VA, but that of a large part of the American electorate that, despite it’s claim that it “cares” for those veterans, does not really want to invest in, or pay for, that care.

I have been under VA care for quite a few years, and have never seen any of its staff standing around doing nothing, something especially true of those who provide the actual care;  i.e.  the medical professionals. 

On the other hand, I am of the opinion that it is also a fact that the organization is meant for ex-military, and not for children.  So, if they can’t see me “right away”, or if there is someone who needs to go ahead of me because they are in greater need than I, and I have to wait, then so be it. Those (veterans or others), who walk in with the attitude of “stop the world, I want to get off”, as far as some of us are concerned, would do the same thing wherever and whatever medical care facility they would frequent.

Well, Mrs. Kneisel, you don’t seem to mind when Trump picks on the disabled. That double standard again?

Mr. Hugenberg again deflects the issue concerning the ability of the families to sue. That should be their choice, not Obama’s. How many times has the President said “it’s the right thing to do” when it suits his agenda even when it is illegal or against the constitution? And he ignores that basic fact that no where are we respected, feared, or thought of as important other from those countries that just want our money. If he thinks we have a higher standing in the world than we did 7 years ago he must be addicted to MSNBC,the NYT, and the mainstream media spin machine.

Actually Mr. Iles, I was referring to myself as being awful for posting the article poking fun of Illary.

So why don’t you hold Trump to that same standard?

He isn’t a veteran, as you have pointed out before, so he doesn’t get the Kneisel “he-served-so-I’ll-forgive-him-anything” pass.

Of course, I wasn’t deflecting anything.  What seems on the surface to be “common sense” is not.  See:

We’ve been over this and over this, Mr. Iles. What part of “I don’t give a s*it” do you not understand?
btw:  Laitres alleges he’s a veteran today apparently and he does not get a pass.

Mr. Laitres, when you figure out there are more possible causative agents for pneumonia than bacteria I may consider what you say.  Until then—-forget about it.

Just pointing out your continued double standard, Mrs. Kneisel. What’s good for you doesn’t apply to those you agree with.

Sorry, that should be “disagree with”.

I’ve been reading your comments for a couple years at least, Mrs. Kneisel. I have yet to see you deviate from the same pattern.

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