Hillary Clinton thinks Republicans are behind the VA scandal

Hillary Clinton’s interview with Rachel Maddow gives some insight into Hillary’s twisted psyche when she thinks she is addressing an audience that believes like her. A few hours ago I posted on her absurd victim-blaming of the Libyans for the chaos resulting from her ill-conceived operation to overthrow Gadhafi.

Deeper in the interview you find this:

MADDOW:  One policy question that I think the Republicans are raising or talking about amongst themselves hasn’t really burst into a general election conversation yet, but I am genuinely shocked by it.  Which is that it’s becoming more fashionable in Republican circles to talk about abolishing the VA.  Privatizing the VA, getting rid of it.

CLINTON:  Right.

MADDOW:  Throwing veterans onto the mercies of the for-profit healthcare system.

The reason they are able to propose something that radical is because the problems at the VA seem so intractable.  If I had been running Republican campaign against President Obama last year, I would have run it entirely on the VA. A bureaucracy, a bloated big Government program (ph) that can’t be fixed and let’s do right by our veterans (ph).

Do you – do you have any new ideas for trying to fix it?  I mean – there – you can’t find a person in politics who doesn’t say we shouldn’t (sic) do right by our veterans.  But for some reason, this can’t get fixed fast enough.

CLINTON:  Yeah, and I don’t understand that.  You know, I don’t understand why we have such a problem, because there have been a number of surveys of veterans, and overall, veterans who do get treated are satisfied with their treatment.  Now…

MADDOW:  Much more so than people in the regular (inaudible).

CLINTON:  That’s exactly right.

MADDOW:  Yeah.  Right.

CLINTON:  Now, nobody would believe that from the coverage that you see, and the constant berating of the V.A. that comes from the Republicans, in – in part in pursuit of this ideological agenda that they have.

MADDOW:  But in part because there has been real scandal (ph).

CLINTON:  There has (ph) been.  And – but it’s not been as widespread as it has been made out to be.

Now, I do think that some of the reforms that were adopted last year should be given a chance to work.  If there is a waiting period that is just unacceptable, you should be able to, in a sense, get the opportunity to go out, have a private physician take care of you, but at the cost of the V.A.

But I think it goes deeper than that, because if you look at not only V.A. health care, but the backlog on disability determinations, there’s something not working within the bureaucracy.

And I have said I would like to literally appoint a SWAT team to bring in people and just tackle the disability, have an ongoing review of the care that is being given, do more to make sure that every V.A. hospital is delivering care to the highest standard of the community, because, unfortunately, some are doing a lot better job than others are.

And I think that the current new leadership that President Obama did put in seems to be trying to tackle a lot of it.  I just don’t know if they have enough help, and here’s a perfect example of the way that the Republicans try to have it both ways.

They try to create a downward spiral.  Don’t fund it to the extent that it needs to be funded, because we want it to fail so then we can argue for privatization.  They still want to privatize Medicare.  They still want to do away with Social Security.

And these are fights we’ve been having for 70, 80 years, now.  So we cannot grow weary in the face of these ideological assaults on basic fundamental services, whether it’s the V.A., Medicare, Social Security.

But we have to be more creative about trying to fix the problems that are the legitimate concern, so that we can try to stymie the Republican assault.

There are two parts to this incredible lie. First, the GOP has been front and center in expanding the VA budget. As you can see the VA budget continues to bloat at an astronomical rate:

Veterans-Administration-funding-chart

While the number of veterans is cratering due primarily to the immense World War II and Korean War cohorts dying off and being replaced by veterans who entered service under the volunteer military.

veterans pop

If anything, the VA has understated the decline of the Veterans population… not that they would do anything like that:

veterans by age

If the Republicans are out to underfund the VA in order to create an excuse to privatize it… and allow veterans to get the care they need in a timely manner… they are certainly going about it in a very strange and circuitous manner.

The whole Republicans-want-to-starve-people schtick has been around for years. If that was Hillary’s claim then it would be as unremarkable as any other lie she has told. What is truly extraordinary here is that she insists a dysfunctional and possibly un-reformable agency is, in fact, in pretty good shape and the scandal is part of ideological master plan the GOP is working on. Clinton should ask the 300,000+ veterans who died while awaiting treatment how satisfied they are with the care they received.

Taken together, the two claims demonstrate that Clinton is a congenital liar who will always choose the hard lie over the easy truth.