Wednesday, February 21, 2007

According To The Saying

You should never argue with a fool or a drunk, it's difficult for the people watching to tell the difference. I've written several posts on the Walter Reed situation and had a rogue commenter who was determined that the debacle was the result of minority contractors, incompetent civilian help because that's all that was available in the local area or that it wasn't in the budget. Whatever.

Why is it that people fail to realize that budget cuts, outsourcing of traditionally held jobs and cronyism at the top would have consequences in the real world?
Walter Reed's commander, Maj. Gen. George W. Weightman, said in an interview that the Army leadership had assured him that all the staff increases he had requested would be met. "This is not an issue," he said. "This is their number one priority."

He said the Army has agreed to fund what he called a "surge plan" that has been designed for the likelihood that the 21,500-person troop increase underway in Iraq will result in more casualties.

Weightman said case managers have been ordered to call each of the 700 outpatients to ask about problems they may be encountering. He has also put half a dozen senior enlisted officers from the hospital in charge of the outpatients' companies normally in the hands of lower-level platoon sergeants. Also, a medic will be stationed 24 hours a day at the Mologne House, the largest residence on the 113-acre post, to help soldiers with medical or psychological problems.
It does make one wonder what wouldn't have happened if the Pulitzer deserving reporters of the Washington Post hadn't written their series, doesn't it? It's the little things that help to make life bearable.
The Post series documented tattered conditions at Building 18, including mold, rot, mice and cockroaches, but also a larger bureaucratic indifference that has impeded some soldiers' recovery.

At Building 18 yesterday, platoon sergeants with clipboards went from room to room inspecting for mold, leaks and other problems. A broken elevator was repaired, and snow and ice were cleared from the sidewalks.
Wow, who would have thought that amputees and wounded people would want an elevator and a safe area to walk around the hospital. The nerve.
Jeff Miller (Fla.), the ranking Republican on the House Veterans' Affairs subcommittee on health, said: "The neglect being experienced by some wounded service members is outrageous. The Defense Department is never shy about asking for supplemental funds for operations and equipment; I cannot imagine why housing for recuperating wounded would not be a similarly high priority."
Oh, and Mr. Goldberg, Geraldo doesn't need to investigate to make sure that the WaPo isn't making this stuff up, and I don't care if it's one service member who's complaining, that's one too many. Less trivialization and more constructive effort will get more done than trying to one up a fellow blogger. Of course, I'm assuming that you want to support the troops, not play politics. I'm sorry if I'm wrong.


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