Monday, November 10, 2014

Veterans Day and the new VA chief

I wish to thank ALL Veterans for their service to this country.

There are, according to the Globe, 374,000 veterans living in Mass, of that 273,000 are war time Veterans, with the largest amount of Veterans here in Middlesex County at almost 70,000.  By the War's, 32,000 from WWII, 45,000 from Korea, 124,000 from the Vietnam War and 80,000 from Gulf War, Iraq and Afghanistan. And I'd be remiss by not pointing out the amount of female Veterans in this State, 32,000, with 203,000 currently serving active duty.

In May of this year, the US house of Representatives passed a proposal to take a moment of silence at 2:11 PM East time.The Bill did receive bi-partisan support, but I've not read or heard of the bill making it into law.

Some of you have read or heard about my efforts to fly the POW MIA flag at the Memorial building, which was apposed by the Veterans agent here in Town. Despite his objections (which no one I've spoken to agrees) the flags are now being flown thanks to the good people at TM, who by a overwhelming vote for a resolution, instructed the Building and Grounds head Jim Polini to hang the flags. Out of this came a policy from the BOS, instructing the POW MIA flags to be flown at the Memorial building, Police and Fire headquarters. There are still 39 Massachusetts families waiting for their loved ones to be accounted for and brought home from Vietnam and thousands from all the past wars and we should never forget them.

A bit of good news for ALL veterans seeking medical help, after the scandal that broke about the VA's administration cooking the books while Veterans waited months for appointments and some even died as a result of the lack of accountability. The President did what he had to and got rid of the VA Chief and now has appointed Robert McDonald, the former CEO of Proctor and Gamble. I saw his interview on 60 minutes last night and I think he will do the right thing for ALL Veterans in this country. He has his work cut out and is trying to hire 28,000 medical staffers. One problem he has is dealing with the Federal Government is that you can't fire anyone, regardless of the infraction. There is a procedure that must be followed and the new head is trying to deal with it. As in most federal agencies, employees have way more protection than private industry. There are literally hundreds of federal employees who have been furloughed because it just is easier to pay them verses trying to fire them. Is it any wonder why we have little faith in the Fed's to do the right thing for tax payers.

As in the past, if you are a Veteran you have a free meal at some local restaurants. You can find them at: