National memberships in veteran service orgs are down


Veterans for ChangeThe headline above is from the last sentence of a piece this week in the Jackson County Chronicle (Wisconsin).

Hard-core veterans’ advocates know why. So do most veterans.

The attorneys who help veterans slog through the DVA benefit adjudication processes often for over a decade, the non-profits like Veterans for Common Sense fighting for new veteran-friendly regulations delivering benefits and reversing the delay-deny-and-hope-you-die culture, know well that the U.S. Dept of Veterans Affairs is embedded with neocons whose only function is drive veterans to give up and say, ‘frack it.’

The national muckity-mucks in Washington D.C., and those in the national leadership like Thomas Tradewell of the VFW are a bunch of hacks and shills.

And as more people learn this, the membership levels go down. [By the way, Sen. Jim Webb (D-VA), a combat Marine in Vietnam who as a U.S. Senator has fast earned a reputation as a guy who hates gameplayers and posers, introduced legislation this week for a non-existent problem that the VFW has been squawking about to shut these asses up forever on the Tricare-scare issue.]

Local chapters of the veterans service orgs often do great work, not the least is a community-minded center for veterans and families; the Wisconsin Rapids, Wisconsin American Legion post is an example.

But the VFW and the national leaderships of VSOs are prepared for failure for veterans’ welfare because they are part of the deny problem.

Here’s a comment below by Gordon Ringer written this morning on point:

March 26, 2010 at 7:25 am

Sent to the VFW along with my resignation from them. Looks like I will have to find an organization that is actually “for” veterans issues, and not just another voice for the GOP. I had always thought the VFW above politics. No more. I am done. Iraq/Afhganistan Vet Orgs, here I come.

As a retired combat vet (USAF), and a Democrat, I must tell you how extremely disappointed to learn of the letter the VFW sent to Congress seeming to imply that the Democratic Party and current leadership have “betrayed” veterans. Working in the DOD Healthcare field and a volunteer for the local VA, I must inform you how inaccurate your information is. This administration has “increased”, allow me to repeat “increased” funding for almost every single veteran program, as well as an increase in the DOD budget.

Perhaps you have forgotten that this organization is supposed to be an advocate for “Veterans of Foreign Wars, and not a political lobbying wing for the GOP. I found it curious that in the previous two elections the organization was extremely quiet when discussing the campaign, even though “BOTH” of the Democratic Candidates were indeed “Veterans of a Foreign War (Gore and Kerry). To say I was disappointed is an understatement. If this organization is becoming merely a “shill” for the GOP, then I would like to terminate my association with you. This disappoints me, for I believed that your organization was supposed to “support veterans” not merely repeat GOP talking points. Oh yeah, and by the way, in my unit in Iraq and Afghanistan who were Democrats (yeah, may want to check that out, there “ARE” Democrats serving on the frontlines), so to imply we “betray” veterans is an insult to those of us who served. Shame.


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