, Salem, MA


August 22, 2013

Column: Pay for veterans' care now, or pay more later


Every dollar in VA growth is taken from another department. Were it not that way, this growth would just go straight into our debt. Irrespective of how sequestration and other Budget Control Act mechanics may be amended, the principle will remain true: postponed costs will grow, and they will come at the expense of other priorities.

As always, it bears repeating that “postponed costs” is an accountant’s term for untreated veterans.

The right thing is caring for these veterans now. It’s also the prudent thing. Professor Bilmes at Harvard has told us about the costs, and the Citizen-Soldier Support Program at the University of North Carolina has shown us a way ahead. The only thing missing is accountability for the Pentagon and VA to set aside their bureaucratic frictions and tackle the problem.

Matthew Leatherman is a resident fellow at the International Affairs Council of North Carolina in Raleigh, N.C. He wrote this for McClatchy-Tribune.

Text Only | Photo Reprints

AP Video
Raw: Massive Dust Storm Covers Phoenix 12-hour Cease-fire in Gaza Fighting Begins Raw: Bolivian Dancers Attempt to Break Record Raw: Israel, Palestine Supporters Rally in US Raw: Palestinians and Israeli Soldiers Clash Raw: Air Algerie Flight 5017 Wreckage Virginia Governor Tours Tornado Aftermath Judge Faces Heat Over Offer to Help Migrant Kids Kerry: No Deal Yet on 7-Day Gaza Truce Kangaroo Goes Missing in Oklahoma More M17 Bodies Return, Sanctions on Russia Grow Gaza Residents Mourn Dead Amid Airstrikes Raw: Deadly Tornado Hits Virginia Campground Ohio State Marching Band Chief Fired After Probe Raw: Big Rig Stuck in Illinois Swamp Cumberbatch Brings 'Penguins' to Comic-Con Raw: Air Algerie Crash Site in Mali Power to Be Restored After Wash. Wildfire Crashed Air Algerie Plane Found in Mali Israel Mulls Ceasefire Amid Gaza Offensive
Comments Tracker
Roll Call
Helium debate