While Over a Thousand Veterans Die, Veterans Affairs Spends Millions On Frivolous Items

Devastating: A veteran of the Iraq War becomes emotional while visiting a grave site at Arlington National Cemetery in Arlington, Virginia (May 25, 2014). (Photo: Public Domain)

Devastating: A veteran of the Iraq War becomes emotional while visiting a grave site at Arlington National Cemetery in Arlington, Virginia (May 25, 2014). (Photo: Public Domain)

July 28, 2016

By Lorra B.

Open the Books, a taxpayer watchdog group, and Cox Media partnered to get an oversight report detailing Veterans Affairs spending. What they found may shock you.

While over a thousand veterans died waiting for treatment, The VA administration felt compelled to spent a whopping $20 million on extravagant artwork and sculptures, according to The Washington Free Beacon.

“In the now-infamous VA scandal of 2012-2015, the nation was appalled to learn that 1,000 veterans died while waiting to see a doctor,” wrote Adam Andrzejewski, the founder and CEO of Open the Books, in an editorial for Forbes. “Tragically, many calls to the suicide assistance hotline were answered by voicemail. The health claim appeals process was known as ‘the hamster wheel’ and the appointment books were cooked in seven of every ten clinics.”

“Yet, in the midst of these horrific failings the VA managed to spend $20 million on high-end art over the last ten years—with $16 million spent during the Obama years,” Andrzejewski said.

Some of the items purchased included a $21,000 Christmas Tree, $115,600 “art Consultants” and $32,000 for pictures to cover the walls at the San Francisco VA. Then, of course, there was the $482,960 worth of “rock sculptures” that the veterans couldn’t even see because they were blind.

“In an ironic vignette, at a healthcare facility dedicated to serving blind veterans—the new Palo Alto Polytrauma and Blind Rehabilitation Center—the agency wasted $670,000 on two sculptures no blind veteran can even see,” Andrzejewski said. “The ‘Helmick Sculpture’ cost $385,000 (2014) and a parking garage exterior wall façade by King Ray Studio for the ‘design, fabrication, and installation of the public artwork’ cost $285,000 (2014).”

A gross misappropriation of taxpayer’s money. So, basically, dressing up the walls and halls of the VA was seen as more important that the lives of our Heroes. Wrap your brain around that.

Where is the outrage??

Veteran’s aren’t interested in the fancy décor costing millions of dollars…they want to see a doctor!