by Max Brantley
However, the Republicans feigning the most concern for veterans are the ones most at fault for the crisis in veterans’ health care. Paul Ryan, author of three separate GOP-approved budget plans that severely cut VA services, has made no bones about his plans to privatize Medicare and turn it into a voucher system. He's also called for changes in VA services that would cut off care for 1.3 million vets. Outrage over the VA scandal could also be manipulated by Ryan and his ilk to force a similar privatization over veterans’ health care.
The extreme rightists who control the House of Representatives don’t want to privatize the VA to help veterans – if the Republican majority truly cared about veterans, they wouldn’t have repeatedly voted against bills providing jobs, homes, and health care to veterans and their families. The budget deal that Ryan and Senator Patty Murray approved last year cut veterans’ pensions by $6 billion. The GOP actually wants to see the VA fail to score more political points.
By continuously cutting VA services, the far-right wants to reinforce their anti-government narrative by cementing the idea into people’s heads that government is bloated and inefficient, and that private companies unaccountable to voters should seize control of public assets.