Thursday, July 31, 2014

If you're not angry about the VA scandal, Jon Stewart will fix that

Veterans Affairs Secretary Eric Shinseki testified before Congress last week that he was "mad as hell" about the egregious scandal unfolding at his hospitals, with workers falsifying records to make wait times appear shorter. At least 40 veterans are estimated to have died while waiting for care.

Shinseki might want to take some lessons on what "mad as hell" actually looks like from Jon Stewart.

Stewart unloaded on the VA scandal during his Monday night show, literally screaming over evidence that the falsifying of records wasn't happening at just one hospital but at numerous hospitals across eight states. The segment ends with a pretty epic rant from Stewart, who adds VA officials to his "Big Book of Assholes."

Well before this segment, the Daily Show has been a persistent critic of mismanagement at Veteran's Affairs.

Stewart has been running segments since early 2013 about the massive backlog of paper claims that the agency hasn't processed. The backlog of 1 million claims, as Stewart aptly joked, looked like something you would discover in your grandfather's garage.

The segments have continued over the past year and, for anyone just now trying to understand the mismanagement of the VA, are good and infuriating introduction to how dysfunctional the agency can be.

Given its long history, its fair to expect more Daily Show outrage on the VA scandal in the not too distant future.

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