CHAPLAIN KATHIE: Sally Satel Still Selling Care for PTSD Veterans is Waste of Money


Something Evil This Way Comes

Sally Satel is still at it with the support from American Enterprise Institute. For years she’s been trying to say that PTSD is nothing more than veterans looking for an easy ride. She hasn’t changed and her claims remain that taking care of veterans with PTSD is a waste of money.   

Below is a an excerpt from the American Enterprise Institute press release promoting that PTSD is a waste of money.

Sally Satel

Veterans: What’s Wrong with Current Treatments?

As the White House proposes a $7.2 billion allocation in its 2012 budget to fund research and treatment of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) in military veterans, American Enterprise Institute (AEI) scholar and psychiatrist Sally Satel explains the number of problems with current PTSD treatments and proposes methods to optimize the use of PTSD funding.

Among Satel’s key points:

A “culture of clinical diagnosis” allows mental health examiners to diagnose a veteran’s level of disability before veterans have even begun rehab. This convinces the patient that future health is unattainable, and gives individual veterans dismal prospects for meaningful recovery even before a course of therapy.

Disability benefits themselves can sometimes cause inadvertent damage by incentivizing unemployment and dependency and discouraging veterans from returning to the civilian workforce.

Collaboration between the Veterans Benefits Administration (VBA) and the Veterans Health Administration (VHA) needs to improve. The VBA often aims to maximize veteran benefits while giving no attention to improving clinical treatment, while the VHA often focuses solely on treatment without properly assisting veterans with financial hardships.

Sally Satel can be reached at [email protected] (202.862.7154) or through her assistant at [email protected] (202.862.4876). For all other media inquiries, please contact Hampton Foushee at [email protected] (202.862.5806).

AEI’s in-house ReadyCam TV studio–for live and taped interviews–can be booked through VideoLink at 617.340.4300. 

Another load of scholarly wisdom shoveled out on veteran’s heads. Guess she never met the veterans waiting for month after month, even years, to have a claim approved only to discover that a disability worthy of 100% will only receive 50% or less making them file an appeal and fight for the rest. This is not even addressing the fact that until they receive the disability rating, there is no income for them to live off of if they cannot work. This the case of PTSD, veterans usually cannot work because of the medications, flashbacks and nightmares and all around reduced quality of life.

The fact is, the sooner veterans are helped to heal, the more parts of their lives they can get back. The longer PTSD is allowed to continue destroying lives, the worse it gets. Yet as bad as this news is, Vietnam veterans have shown that even after 30 or 40 years they can heal enough to have happier lives. Does this mean they can suddenly return to work? Usually not simply because of the medications they are given prevent it. This is why so many of them volunteer their time to help others. They want to stay involved and are not lazy but as a volunteer they don’t have to punch a clock or show up after another night of nightmares to battle. If they get a flashback in the middle of the day, they get to just leave instead of dealing with a boss wanting to fire them or coworkers trying to get them to go off on them for the fun of it. Somehow watching a coworker duck under a table or freak out with a loud bang makes their day.

Oh, but Sally is not alone on this. This attitude has been around as long as I can remember. There was a time when the draft forced young men to go to war no matter what they thought. Then when they came home, there were some saying these drafted combat veterans were more likely to seek disability because they didn’t want to go in the first place. This changed when even veterans wanting to serve were coming back with the same kind of wounds. Now after all the years of research, Satel is still at it even though today’s veterans all volunteered indicating a commitment to others so deep they are willing to die. How could she even suggest that these same people suddenly turned into someone looking to make easy money for the rest of their lives? This is no way comes close to addressing the fact that when you break down the money veterans receive, even with 100%, they could make a lot more money working.

So what happens? We see them lose their homes because they cannot work and the VA has not approved their claim. They are told that they have free care when they come home but no one is telling them how to pay their bills when they have no pay checks. A soldier, planning to serve a lifetime, wanting to do nothing else, has to leave the military because of PTSD, is suddenly left with what PTSD is doing to him along with the fact he is left with no idea what to do.

We see what PTSD does to them and their lives but people like Satel see a dollar sign on their heads then insults them. What part of they cannot work is she determined to keep missing? Why isn’t this woman interested in finding out what works to help them heal as much as she wants to go after what little they do get?

At least we can take comfort in the fact she has been saying the same thing for years but her claims have not stopped advances in helping veterans.


  1. Sgt. all I can say is bravo! You just told the story of millions of veterans in one short paragraph. It isn’t just the veterans suffering because everyone in their lives do as well. If Satel really cared, she’d be pushing for early treatment the way civilians do it following a traumatic event. Crisis teams rush in so they can be there to listen to anyone needing to talk and to show they care. Imagine if a unit had the same response after and IED blew up or right after a firefight.
    Cops get that kind of help every time they have to fire a gun or one of their own are killed but we expect the troops to just get over it and do their jobs. We expect them to spend a year with hardly no sleep, always on edge under constant thoughts this could be their last day, and then just get over it.
    I’ve seen Vietnam veterans heal even though they cannot be “cured” after 30 or 40 years and they know what came with PTSD. Every single one of them just wanted to go back to the way they were before they deployed. With the right help, they ended up better than they were before but people like Satel want to pin it all on the veteran instead of what they have lacked to provide.

  2. Sally Satel,

    Burn in Hell. I suffer with PTSD, and I wasn’t the one who suffered. My son suffered, my family suffered, and my friends suffered. I finally took the whisky bottle out of my hand, and spend a month in a inpatient care VA hospital one of the best at St. Cloud, MN. Do you know where that is? Or are you that naive as well. Put the boots on, before you judge my blood stained calluses.

    U.S Army Sergeant Mariah Deike
    Time served: 8 years and currently serving.

  3. She is a minority and thank God for that. The most respected psychiatrists and psychologists know what the reality of PTSD is. It takes over every part of their lives while it also takes over the lives of their families. While it is true that some can heal enough to work, that depends on how fast they get help. Given the fact older veterans didn’t receive help for decades and newer veterans are still waiting in line to have claims approved this isn’t going to happen any time soon. Fighting to have a claim approved, waiting months or years, does a lot more damage to an already traumatized life. Then the issue of redeployments adding to the risk of PTSD means that more will not get the help they need early on. Medication alone is not treatment. If Satel really wanted to “save” money then she should be trying to save lives by advocating for help for all of them as soon as they need it.

  4. Who died and made her God? I learned a long time ago that I only get to see what’s happening on the outside of a person. I lack the ability to know what’s going on “inside” of them and I doubt that Little Ms. Sally has anymore ability than I do. Discounting another person pain and suffering is way above my pay grade and I repeat, it’s above Sally’s pay grade too. It seems that she has created an industry, making money from finding fault with government provided programs. She says Veterans would be better off just going back to work. Well, that’s true….for “some” Veterans. Others will never be able to go back to work and no matter what she says that will remain a fact. I detest this “one size fits all” philosophy on how to treat mental health issues. We are not all the same and we cannot all be cured by the same method! The sad true of the matter is that some people recover and some of us die with and from our wounds.

  5. lets not forget spraying her with agent after all dont policeman have to go thru being pepper sprayed and the attack of stun guns on them to prepare them then maybe she will leave our war heroes alone

  6. Apparantly this person has never lived with a person with ptsd the nightmares the nightsweats the screaming out at night being sprayed with agent orange picking up and carrying dead bodies who happenen to be your best friends then in a few years the heart attacks the strokes the parkinsons disease the diabetes any and all quality of life affected…a
    little bit of compensation from people who caused this to happen..He would have loved to come home went back to work for the railroad. Unable to work wives of these fine men helped them to survive..And this crazed woman comes along ridiculing these men..Why wasnt she or her family members over there then she would know these things first hand. Ehe men trying yo get around with one or no legs or arms and whats even worse well guess what without their minds and she has the gall to say this to us HELL WONT BE HOT ENOUGH FOR HER>>>………

  7. When I think of all the years it took for veterans to get this far in having PTSD treated, this woman still wants to suggest they are better off getting back to work. She is of the same stone aged thinking that had troops shot for being cowards when they had what we now call PTSD.

  8. They won’t be happy until they’ve managed to kill and silence all of us. Until we’re all homeless or dead.

    This “Psychiatrist” is just another example of someone spouting nonsense who doesn’t have a clue what the real world is about. She needs to have gone to a better school – or joined the Military.

    I, for one, am sick and tired of idiots who don’t know a damn thing trying to tell others what “is really going on.” The really amazing thing is that someone actually gave this Press time!!

    Like Sarah Palin, and everyone else who thinks they know “everything” this person will go away. Anyone with any sense isn’t listening to her.

    Take care Brothers and Sisters! Don’t give up your fight! If you do, they win – and we can’t let that happen!

    Remember – Veteran’s March on DC in March!! If you can be there – I hope you show up! Let’s tell these idiots what really IS going on!!

    Vigilant Always –

  9. Troops exposed often to close combat develope a look about them. Their faces assume identifiable expressions. It is an expression of dread. Sure, it is not on their faces all the time. When troops face horror day after week after month it effects the way they react to any enviorment they live in. It changes them – to varying degrees – forever.

    The American Enterprise Institute and The Heritage Foundation are not Veteran or Military supporters. They are fiscally conservative organizations that do not agree with quality of life for wounded troops. Not hard to understand is it folks.

    Take care Chaplin. You are one of the “good guys”.

    With respect

    Dale R. Suiter

  10. Why don’t we send her to War like the reporters, have their vehicles, friends, equipment blown up in her face, then send her back to the work force for her boss to say; “We hired someone else instead, your services are no longer required.”

    Have her family fall apart in-front of her, her home taken away, her credit score ruined,her vehicles taken away and no place to live.

    Have the good doctor go through this, then put her back in charge, and see if she changes her tune.

    Oh, one last thing. Put her in a wheelchair, with no ability to use her legs or arms, have a service-attendant change her pants, go to a store and try and shop while other people push her away, slam the door on her and have to be fed by someone else for an entire week. Wake-up call.

    After all of this, then I will show her respect and trust her word. Remember, this is a person who makes more than any of us, has medical till she dies and doesn’t have to live pay-check to pay-check.

    Just a friendly suggestion. But we know it will never happen. But I’m sure she won’t feel guilty cashing her pay-check.

    Semper Fi.


    Luigi V. Micheli

  12. Just another profiteer making available funds for her crew to steal, and ignore the middle and disadvantaged class. These racist are of the same old slave mentality, let the master have it all, and you have nothing.

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