The amount of increase in the VAs budget in the Obama era, $65.9 billion,exceeds the entire VA budget in the FY2004 budget. The FY2008 VA budget was $84.7 billion (which increased 83% during the Bush administration, too). Using that as a baseline, Congress has given the VA an additional $235 billion in six years over that FY2008 level. Where havethose resources gone? Did the White House even think to ask before this scandal blew up? Thats almost a quarter of a trillion dollars in six years over and above what the VA had already been receiving, and the White House now claims that the problems are that the VA cant articulate its own budget needs effectively enough. The problem is the VA itself. Its the inevitable outcome of single-payer systems, whose incentives all run to the protection of the bureaucracy because the customers have nowhere else to go. That is the essence of the corrosive culture at the VA, and only a paradigm change in its mission will solve it.
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