The Liberal Patriot Blog
 The Liberal Patriot Blog is dedicated to collecting and sharing information about National and State [New Hampshire] Political Action, News, and Events.

Saturday, October 15, 2005

Are you fucking kidding me?!!

For Injured U.S. Troops, 'Financial Friendly Fire'

His hand had been blown off in Iraq, his body pierced by shrapnel. He could not walk. Robert Loria was flown home for a long recovery at Walter Reed Army Medical Center, where he tried to bear up against intense physical pain and reimagine his life's possibilities.

The last thing on his mind, he said, was whether the Army had correctly adjusted his pay rate -- downgrading it because he was out of the war zone -- or whether his combat gear had been accounted for properly: his Kevlar helmet, his suspenders, his rucksack.

But nine months after Loria was wounded, the Army garnished his wages and then, as he prepared to leave the service, hit him with a $6,200 debt. That was just before last Christmas.....

The new analysis comes as the United States has more wounded troops than at any time since the Vietnam War, with thousands suffering serious injury in Iraq or Afghanistan

Army officials said they are in the process of forgiving debts for 99 of the 331 wounded soldiers, all now out of the military. ... Part of the problem is that the government's computerized pay system is designed to "maximize debt collection"……

…..Rep. Todd R. Platts (R-Pa.) said that for some troops, "we've so mismanaged their pay that . . . we've sent debt notices while they're still in combat, in harm's way." Hounding wounded troops is unfathomable, he said. "For even a single soldier, this is unacceptable," he said.

….For wounded troops -- still adjusting to their injuries and changed futures -- a debt notice can be another bitter discovery.

"It was like I was being abandoned. I was no good to the military anymore," recalled Loria, who served more than five years. "They figured the pay glitch was my fault and I was going to pay for it."

from washington post via The News Blog

This is criminal!!! Is anyone able to comment on this without swearing? You are a better person than me.... [or you have ice water for blood.]

Is there anybody left stupid enough to think that our bloated defense spending actually makes it to the troops? They nickel and dime the shit out of these guys [and gals] and then give no bid contracts to defense contractors for brazillions! It is Criminal, Treasonous and Unpatriotic!!


Comments:
True that my brother. Tragic. If memory serves, this brave troop wasn't even given a ticket back to his home town by Unca Sham. A local attorney footed the bill for him to get there. Imagine that. A shark helping out like that when the guys government took his blown off arm and slapped him in the face with it. I hope someone helps this guy out when he goes off DOD medical and into the VA system. That fight should be nice. I suppose thet would want to see the other part of his arm along with his equipment he lost.
 
You're right Jon - criminal and unforgiveable are the words that come to mind - along with others of a more colorful nature.

These stories need to be told, often and loudly, so that every idiot with a yellow ribbon magnet on their car hears them.
 
I wonder if the debt collectors calling these soldiers and harassing them have yellow ribbon magnets on their cars?
 
Hey, I'm one of those idiots that have a yellow ribbon on my car and just to be clear here, I in no way support those that twisted the true meaning of this ribbon by supporting the Cheney/Bush administration. This idiot (me) supports the troops fighting this illegal, immoral war for Bush vanity. I have several friends and neighbors that are still over there.

I don't take umbrage (well maybe I do sometime) about the fact that some are sooo confused and hold our military in such disdain, even though our military are the first place so many look to for everything from rain storms to border security to global friggin warming to broekn traffic lights.My family and I come from families that have served proudly, and some still serve, their Country. I am however chagrined that my displaying some sign of troop support would be misconstrued as supporting a sham administration.

That being said, Louis Armstrong was asked to define jazz and he told the person, if they had to ask they would never understand anyway. I feel that is pretty close to serving your Country. Those that are so conflicted at magnets and the military have, in my experience, no fucking clue about duty, honor, courage, dedication to ones Country or ideals that so many troops are actually fighting to uphold. These same people are the first ones to spout some xcrap from the Constitution as it fits their agenda. Whether those same troops have a magnet on their tank or not, serving in this Country or not, a magnetic ribbon, or yellow ribbon around a tree, is the sign that you want the troops to know you support them.

But clearly, I digress.
 
At issue isn't the yellow ribbon or the magnetic version there of.. the issue is that empty symbolism allows people to believe they are supporting the troops merely by saying so or showing it with a symbol...

A yellow ribbon is a nice gesture, but an ultimately hollow one if it is not backed up by REAL support, which means making sure the troops are taken care of through voting, activism, staying informed, etc.

Blaming the soldiers for what military and political leaders do was faulty reasoning that died in the Political left in the 60's & 70's.

The only people I see blaming the soldiers are those in the ring wing. Who regularly blame them to give cover to their own failed policies and politicians.

I don't think that people who display patriotic symbols nessesarily support the government leaders, but I question how many of the really support the troops.

How to god someone can drive a hummer AND have a made in china yellow magnetic ribbon on it. The GOP wants people to think that all they have to do to support the troops is say so or wave a flag or tie on a yellow ribbon, because they know that REALLY supporting the troops would get the kicked out of office and possibly imprisoned.
 
I have a bumper sticker on my car, that has a yellow ribbon printed on it. It's from Veterans Against the War, and reads, "Bring 'em home now." I don't understand how anyone can think that supporting the troops is leaving them over there to fight a bogus war with faulty equipment. Supporting the troops is not sneaking them into Walter Reed after dark so no one can see their wounds. Supporting the troops is not welcoming them home to lousy medical care, miltary creditors, joblessness, and homelessness.

In fact - the best way we could EVER support our troops - and all who have gone before - is to form a Department of Peace and work on conflict resolution in ways that make sense. Putting an end to the military industrial complex would be a fitting memorial to all of our veterans.
 
Hallelujah!!!
 
Ezxcellent points all and thanks. I am currently working with members of the Legion to "urge" anyone with influence, to increase and make VA properly and fully, mandatory funded. I don't remember the exact figures from the OREO mobile, but a sustantial cut to the Pentagon, moved to sooo many other necessary programs in the volunteer military and other area of social needs, would be a very beneficial first step while not effecting the readiness abilities of our military.

I have been including in my stump, my support for our State to intiate resolutions (not the most effective but a start) to legeitimately support the troops during and after their service. As I said, it would include mandatory VA funding but also an end to the automated system that nickels and dimes troops for losing equipment during movements.

I guess digression here was O.K. It may be I'm concerned with the 8"of water in my cellar and the 3 feet in the back yard. Peace all.
 
Just try to stop this group from digressing, wj!!
 
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