RUSH: So California Chrome, the horse that's gonna be running the Triple Crown. You're saying, "What? A horse? With everything going on out there?" Yeah, 'cause it's important, folks. You see, California Chrome was possibly violating the rules of horse racing by wearing Breathe Right nasal strips, a whole bunch of 'em, on the snout, or the snoot, the nose. And this, of course, allowed the horse to breathe more easily.
Now American athletes in all sports use the Breathe Right nasal strips. I don't know if Breathe Right is the brand name, but it's the same principle. And they asked last week after the horse won the Preakness, the Belmont Stakes comes up, that's Triple Crown, and the owners of the horse said they want to continue using the strips. And the gods of horse racing say, "Wait a minute, wait a minute, we've gotta check into this." They got an answer back in two days.
Now, imagine if you're in a VA hospital, in Arizona, and you've been promised to be on a special waiting list where you are going to get advanced treatment, preferential treatment 'cause you're on a special waiting list. And then you wait, and you wait, and you wait, and all the while you see that a horse has his request answered in two days, or the owners of the horse get the request answered in two days. But you are on the list and you die before treatment. That happened. I have it right here. It's in the Financial Times: "Veterans Scandal Risks Engulfing Obama."
Now, imagine that. This is Geoff Dyer in Washington writing for the Financial Times. This is a news story, but his opinion is right here in the first sentence, "Amid contrived outrage over Benghazi," meaning we don't really believe it, folks. We're not really outraged, you and me and millions of other Americans, that four Americans died, perhaps unnecessarily, at the consulate in Benghazi. No, no, no, that's fake, that's contrived. We're just politically motivated on that. That's not real.
"Amid contrived outrage over Benghazi and the improving fortunes of its health care reform --" Really? Improving fortunes of health care reform? I know that's the buzz, I know it's the PR, but in reality health care reform isn't happening. Well, improving fortunes aren't. The rest of the sentence says: "-- the Obama administration could be facing a genuine scandal about its treatment of military veterans that has the potential to attract broad political condemnation of its competence."
And see, the reason why Geoff Dyer writing in Washington for the Financial Times thinks this is real and the others are contrived, well, Benghazi's contrived and health care's getting better, but this is real because, well, 'cause it's real, and Democrats and Republicans are upset about it.
"The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) is facing mounting evidence that some of the hospitals it runs have been keeping two sets of books to make it look as if they were reducing waiting times to see a doctor. More damning, the department is investigating the claims of a whistleblower doctor in Arizona that dozens of patients at one hospital died while they were languishing on a hidden waiting list without ever being given an appointment. Richard Griffin, the department’s acting inspector general, admitted on Thursday that its review could lead to criminal charges. In the first political casualty of the scandal, Robert Petzel, the department’s undersecretary for heath, resigned on Friday."
Shinseki forced him out. Eric Shinseki, about whom we have spoken at great length previously. "If the evidence of mismanagement continues to accumulate, the Obama administration will find itself not in another partisan knife-fight, but under fire from both parties in a Congress where the uniformed military is venerated." Right. Both parties, where uniform military is venerated. Right, right, right, right.
Now, let me ask you a question, just a little hypothetical. Let's say Obama had a secret list of people for food stamps. There were two lists. Everybody signs up and then a secret list of people on food stamps who would be treated more rapidly because they're on the special list than everybody else in order to create the impression that food stamp demand is being met, being dealt with, and it's being streamlined. Imagine if say 40 people on the Obama secret food stamp list died of starvation. That's kind of what we're talking about here. Just little analogies here. (interruption) Presidency would be over? Really, you think if they had a super-secret food stamp list and 40 people died of starvation the presidency would be over?
You know what? The president's really mad about this, folks. He's fit to be tied. This been going on since 2008, and he had no idea. He had literally no idea. And he's so mad, he is fit to be tied. He's gonna get to the bottom of this. This is unconscionable. (interruption) I know. He was just as mad about the IRS scandal. And he was just as mad when he found out that you couldn't keep your doctor. Mad about Benghazi, when he found out that the ambassador in Benghazi got killed.
Oh, man, they tell me that he was storming around the White House demanding names, taking prisoners, who the hell made this happen? (interruption) Right, Fast and Furious, remember 200 people have been shot, killed, injured, wounded, maimed, whatever. Fast and Furious, an American gunrunning operation to Mexican drug cartels. When Obama found out about that, was he ticked. Oh, man, when Syria crossed the red line, do you know how mad he was? And, folks, when he found out that you'd been lied to about keeping your doctor and keeping your insurance, oh, you don't know how mad.
When he found out the stimulus didn't work, when they had people telling him the first thing he did early on in his Regime, when it didn't work, I mean, it's amazing there's anybody left in this Regime. (interruption) Well, I don't know if he was mad when he found out I won the book award. You know how mad he was when Jill Abramson got fired. Oh, man. So, anyway -- (interruption) You don't know?
Here. Grab audio sound bite number 15. Sunday morning on Slay the Nation, Major Garrett is interviewing White House Chief of Staff, Denis McDonough. And Major Garrett said, "Denis, can you understand how a veteran who may have been victimized by these waiting lists or be concerned that they might soon become victimized by this waiting list, might hear all your answers and say, 'Yes, I understand the broad argument you're making about things the president has done, but I need specific answers and specific outrage about this problem now'?"
MCDONOUGH: The president, nobody is more outraged about this problem right now, Major, than the president of the United States. And he will continue to press, as it relates to this question of timely access to care, until it is fixed. That's why we've invested additional billions of dollars in the Veterans Health Administration so that they can have timely access to good care. And as it relates to these allegations, what we're gonna do is we're gonna get to the bottom of them, and ensure we understand exactly what happened and ensure that it never happens again.
RUSH: See, he said Obama's mad, I mean, it was right there. Nobody is more outraged about this problem right now, Major, than the president of the United States. And he's gonna continue to be mad, and he's gonna continue to stay mad as it relates to this question of timely access to care until it's fixed. He's not gonna sleep, Major, until this gets fixed. "The VA, which runs 152 hospitals and 817 outpatient clinics, has long suffered from delays and a dysfunctional bureaucracy." And yet everybody says, "Well, let the government do more." I mean, the VA is just one of many bureaucracies that doesn't get things done on time and in the right way. And yet the low-information crowd just wants government to do even more and more and more.
"In 2010, it introduced a new appointments system which promised a 14-day wait for an appointment with a primary care doctor or a specialist." And that was a massive improvement. Fourteen-day wait. These are people who have worn the uniform for the United States military and have been sent to combat zones. They have been wounded, injured, in some cases severely. They have offered their lives in defense of liberty. And the best the VA could do for 'em was a 14-day, two-week waiting list.
Are you on any kind of a waiting list now with Obamacare or your doctor? I mean, how many of you call your doctor and need to make an appointment, how many of you are put on a waiting list and to how many of you is 14 days really good news? I imagine most of you don't have to wait two weeks, and that if you do have to wait two weeks, you're not applauding and thinking, "Man, I'm special." But that was what was special at the VA, a two-week wait. We're gonna move you up. We're gonna take special care of you, and we're gonna put you on a 14-day wait list for an appointment.
"While there have been reports for several years that the new waiting line system was being abused --" Oh, really? Who would possibly think that could happen? What could go wrong here? "While there have been reports for several years that the new waiting line system was being abused, the subject really began to gather steam three weeks ago when CNN interviewed Sam Foote, who had recently retired as a doctor after working for 24 years for VA hospitals in Phoenix, Arizona."
They originally thought he was a passenger on a Malaysian Airlines flight. That's why they were talking to him. And when they figured out he was a doctor in Phoenix in the VA, "Well, we'll stick with you." That's how they found him. Well, not a passenger on that flight, but he had been a passenger on a Malaysian flight. That's where they found him. Anyway, Sam Foote, recent retired doctor, 24 years VA hospitals in Phoenix, "said that as many as 40 patients had died after being placed on a hidden waiting list that could last for up to a year." Forty patients died while on the special waiting list.
And while that all was happening, "officials at the hospital shredded documents and faked evidence to make it seem as if waiting times were under control," and were in fact working. "Three officials in Phoenix have been put on leave, although Mr. Griffin said there was no evidence yet that patients had died because of delayed appointments." They just died because they didn't see the doctor. But the delay, there's no evidence of that, no. Of course not. Who would think that? Nothing to see here. You got on a promised two week wait list that stretches out to a year, you die in the meantime, it has nothing to do with not being able to see the doctor.
What kind of evil conservative would even put the two together? You got a 14-day waiting list, you're on a special list, we're gonna get you an appointment in two weeks. A year goes by and you don't get to see the doctor and you die. Who could possibly think that was a function of the appointment system not working? Only an evil radio guy could think that. (interruption) Yeah. And plus the shredded documents. Only some mean-spirited homophobe could see something in shredded documents that might be of relevancy here.
"Since then, whistleblowers have alleged similar practices at least seven other VA hospitals around the country and claimed that officials at the hospitals were sometimes paid bonuses for reducing declared waiting times." Not actually getting the appointments fulfilled. They were given bonuses for reducing the declared waiting times on the paperwork. You know, it's no wonder college graduates are booing if a commencement speaker tells 'em to get out there and work hard. They're looking around and saying, "Why? Who else is?"
RUSH: Reuters also has a story here: "Top Aide Says Obama 'Madder Than Hell' About Veterans Allegations," and it's a story quoting what you just heard -- the chief of staff, Denis McDonough -- on Slay the Nation yesterday. (paraphrased) "We're gonna get to the bottom of this! We're gonna get to the bottom of this and we're gonna fix it, and we're gonna ensure that it doesn't happen again!"
Now, this is classic. This is exactly how stuff like this gets spun ("spinned," for those of you in Rio Linda) in dictatorships and in totalitarian states since time immemorial. For example, "Gosh, if Lenin only knew all these people are dying in Ukraine! God, if Lenin only knew, he'd be so mad that he wouldn't let this happen! If Stalin only knew!"
He was the genocidal dictator.
"If Stalin only knew! If Hitler only knew what was being done on his watch? Oh, my! Oh, gee! What if he only knew? If Castro finds out, oh, no! Who's gonna have to tell Castro that this is not working? Oh, no!" And then when the problem becomes too big to ignore, we hear, "Boy, is Stalin mad now! Boy, is Castro really mad now!"
This is how it all works.
These guys are in charge of everything!
This VA business has been going on since 2008. In fact, grab sound bite 13. I don't want to play the whole thing. I want you to listen to the first couple of lines. Major Garrett says, "It's three weeks since the president has commented on this VA story publicly. I want to take that period of time -- almost three weeks -- nothing from the president. Where's he been?"
MCDONOUGH: The president has been, uh, an active voice for, uh, increased resources and -- and reform at the Veterans Administration since he joined the veterans committee in the Senate over, uh, seven, eight, nine years ago, and he will continue to do that --
GARRETT: But I'm talking about a specific issue.
MCDONOUGH: -- and he will continue to talk as he did in Asia --
RUSH: Okay, stop it now. Obama was on the veterans committee in the Senate seven, eight, nine years ago, before he became president. "Hey, Major, you know, you have to be very careful. He has cared about this!" See? This is how it's done. "He's cared about this! His intentions have been good. He's wanted to do the best for the veterans. He's been on that committee seven, eight, or nine years!
"Don't you dare question Obama's motives. Don't you dare! Don't go there, buddy! Don't go there, buddy! Don't you dare question Obama's commitment to this. He's been working on this seven, eight, or nine years -- and, boy, is he really mad now!" So the pattern is they say of the leader, "Oh, my God! Oh, wait 'til he finds out how bad this has been screwed up," and then when he finds out, "Oh, my God, do you know how mad he is?"
But they never fix it.
They never get to the bottom of it.
The whole point is to absolve the leader -- who is in charge of everything -- of any blame.
RUSH: That's right, folks, you remember how furious Obama was when he learned about Benghazi, and look how that's turned out. You remember how furious he said he was when he heard about the IRS scandal and what those rogue agents in Cincinnati were doing. And look how that's turned out. There's no reform, is there? None of this has ever been addressed or fixed. It doesn't have to be, because all that has to happen is the low-information voters are told Obama is livid, how could this happen? And, boy, whoever didn't tell him this was going on, their heads are gonna roll.
The thing to take away from this, I mean, if you want to treat this VA thing seriously, this is exactly where we're all headed. This is what Obamacare's gonna be for everybody. The VA is just one small bureaucracy. Veterans Administration, medical benefits, care, treatment and so forth for a finite number of Americans, veterans, they can't even do that. Forty of them died on a special waiting list in Phoenix just waiting for an appointment for a doctor. This is where Obamacare's headed. There isn't any evidence to the contrary, in fact, anywhere, that any bureaucracy runs what it oversees or regulates any better than the people that actually know that business in the private sector run it. There's no evidence of this ever. This is what's so flummoxing about people's requests or demands that government fix the problems they make, they create, they cause.
And you know why it happens? There's one answer. There's one reason why, in the face of constant, predictable, and demonstrable failure, people keep calling on the government to do it, is because they think the government's trying. They think the government has good intentions. They've not been told that by the private sector. Corporations don't have good intentions, as you know. Corporations cheat people. They make faulty products that don't work. They make airplanes that crash in the ocean that you can't find. They destroy the planet, on purpose. They create products that kill their patients.
I mean, there has been a 50-year, maybe longer than that, effort to demonize every rousing success in the private sector, while concurrently, or concomitantly, if you will, building up government as a great savior. "At least they're trying to help people. At least they want to make things better. At least they care." And that's it, in a nutshell. There are, either intellectual or emotional, reasons or answers to these questions. I mean, there isn't one thing that a government bureaucracy does efficiently or well. Very little. I mean, you could say, if you turn the military loose, shackle them very little, let 'em fight a war, they'll win it. But, I mean, outside of that, take your pick. It's drudgery when you have to deal with them. The IRS, the DMV, you know, the usual suspects.
But again, they get away with it because it is assumed their intentions are good and honorable. Low-information people think -- and, by the way, it isn't just big corporations. It's anybody in business. There has to be some cheating going on. There has to be some screwing of the customers going on. There has to be some taking advantage of people going on, and they're trying to do it, and we need the government to make sure that the private sector doesn't cheat us or steal from us or screw us or make big mistakes.
The government is allowed to totally bollix everything it does because they're trying to help, and that's how Obama escapes accountability in many ways. So the evidence is clear. What this Regime has done with the VA, just build on it, and you find out health care at large. Washington Times: "Obama told of Veterans Affairs health care debacle as far back as 2008." During the campaign. He was a senator. He was on the VA committee. But Obama really cares. See, he really wants things to work, really trying, create jobs. He's really trying to grow the economy. He cares. He really likes people, more than all you Republicans. All you do is run people down all the time. And that's how it works.
It's not all bad news for the VA, by the way. From the Washington Post: "VA Awards Survivor Benefits to First-Known Gay War Widow." Well! See, we've got some great news to report from the VA. "The Department of Veterans Affairs has agreed to provide survivor benefits to the first-known same-sex war widow, marking a breakthrough for the gay-rights community, according to an advocacy group.
"Tracy Dice Johnson, a staff sergeant with the Army National Guard, announced Sunday that the VA would recognize her marriage to the late Donna Johnson, who died in a suicide bombing attack about eight months before last year’s Supreme Court decision that guaranteed equal federal benefits for all legally married couples. The decision means Johnson will receive dependency and indemnity compensation, which goes to the spouses, children and some parents of service members who died while on active duty. The VA will pay her retroactively to the date of her late wife’s death, according to an announcement from the American Military Partners Association."
So see, it's not all bad news from the VA today. There's some great news they could hang their hats on in there. The Washington Post proudly has the story. "VA Awards Survivor Benefits to First-Known Gay War Widow." Hubba hubba.
But again, this is where single payer is headed. This VA situation -- and I'm not gonna say this outcome, but the arrangement is exactly what Obama wants for all of us, that is, government-run single payer. (interruption) Yeah, I know, when Obama found out that the economy was in even worse shape than he thought it was when he assumed office, you remember that? When Obama found out how Bush had lied, not told him the truth, not told him how bad it was? Ho-ho-ho. You should have heard. People were walking around on pins and needles in the White House afraid to say anything 'cause Obama was so mad and demanding to get to the bottom of it.
RUSH: Starting on the phones. In Kent, Washington, this is Scott. Thank you, sir, for calling. You're next. Great to have you here with us. Hi.
CALLER: Rush, good morning. First I'd like to say, Coast Guard dittos to you. I started listening to you back in '99 when I was just a lowly seaman on a Coast Guard cutter off the coast of Washington.
RUSH: Well, I'm glad that you're here. You started in '99 and you stuck with it. That's cool.
CALLER: Well, sir, it is true. You've gotta have more than just once or twice to listen to you. But, you know, unfortunately, I'm calling you on a serious note here because what we have... I know my job is to make you look good as a caller, and --
RUSH: That's very true! That's very, very accurate. What a memory you've got.
CALLER: Well, thank you, sir. Here's the problem that we have today. You used the food stamp analogy. Unfortunately, the VA is a single-payer system for veterans. Due to the unique natures of the injuries and diseases that veterans get, they have to go through the VA because they can't afford to go through the private sector.
CALLER: So that makes the VA a, quote, "single-payer system." Unfortunately what we have here, Rush, is government's first official death panel. You have government officials that made choices to hide lists to go ahead and reduce costs.
RUSH: I know. It's an inescapable conclusion. It's why... You've been on hold, so you may not have heard me make the point that this is where we're all headed. This is single payer, and they can't even do this right.
CALLER: Exactly. I mean, Sarah Palin was mocked for bringing up death panels. Well, folks, this is it. You have 40 dead veterans whose cause of death is the system that they were in. It wasn't because of just their diseases. They were caught in a system, a single-payer system that viewed them as a cost. Not as a veteran, not as a human, but as a cost.
RUSH: Okay, so if I'm hearing you correctly, you believe that the creation of this list and the people that were on it were purposefully ignored?
CALLER: Yes, Rush. As a matter of fact, I heard about a report -- I believe it was from you -- that said that there were people that were given bonuses to go ahead and shorten the list.
RUSH: There were.
CALLER: They had to make the list shorter.
RUSH: They were given bonuses for paperwork, exactly right.
CALLER: Exactly. Most government officials, when they are given bonuses it is because they, quote, "reduce the cost of government."
CALLER: They are recognized for reducing the cost of government.
RUSH: What a joke that is.
CALLER: Well, these folks went ahead and reduced the cost to government at the cost of 40 lives.
RUSH: Now, I just want to make sure that you want to stick with this claim, because you cited Sarah Palin. The original recognition in Obamacare of death panels, the way it manifested itself was you've got a panel of people -- they're actually a group of people -- and they decide case by case who gets treatment and who doesn't based on, "How much is this treatment gonna cost versus how long are they gonna live?" Meaning: "Is this worth the investment?"
RUSH: Are you saying that there was a conscious decision? In your opinion, there was a conscious decision that these 40 people on the list were not going to be treated because it just wasn't worth the money?
CALLER: What other reason is there to create that list?
RUSH: Well, we have to acknowledge that there was blatant incompetence and just inability to get to them. I mean, it is possible. Their intentions might have been --
CALLER: Rush, if these administration officials at any time were given bonuses, what other incentive is there to create the list, other than to get those bonuses for themselves?
RUSH: Yeah. Yeah. Well, I know. They let people die and they lied about it to get the bonuses. I mean, there's no... Well, let's put it this way: People died, and the people that make the list lied about the list in order to get bonuses. That's your conclusion. But do you know how mad Obama was when he found out about this, Scott? Whew! Oh, yeah. Yeah. I mean, oh, he was livid. He had no idea about that!