Veterans Day

Veterans Day ain’t what it used to be, and that’s a good thing.

I had breakfast today courtesy of Perkins. I had supper courtesy of the Western Empire Emporium. I could have stopped by for a second breakfast at Stella’s, lunch at the Texas Roadhouse and dessert at the Golden Corral, if had had the time and appetite.

I think I was a veteran for at least 30 years before I ever even got a day off, much less a free meal. Boy, are things different these days.

I was in the Army 1,095 days. If I live another millennium, I may still get every one of those days back.

6 thoughts on “Veterans Day

  1. It used to irritate me that I had to work every Veterans Day, while lifelong civilians employed by banks or the government always got the day off. The national attitude about Veterans Day has certainly hit extremes since I got out of the Army. I feel as if I have gone from being demonized to canonized. Neither image is accurate.

  2. Well said, Dave. I can’t say that I ever felt demonized, but it sure felt for a long time like nobody gave a damn.

    I should mention, by the way, that the Western Empire Emporium allowed free meals not only for veterans but also for their spouses. And it applied to anything on the menu. The place was packed with a lot of people who looked about my age. The owner must have taken a pretty deep bath on that deal.

    • For me this is a relatively easy quieostn, but has a pretty complex answer. The specialty I have actually looked forward to working with is OB/GYN. I find that the ability of a woman’s body to produce a child, endure the amount of abuse it takes during a pregnancy, and the amount of pain endured during delivery is amazing. The joy of being able to be present as life enters the world is truly one of the greatest moments in life. To me that would be the best possible option. I also would love working in the operating room with a surgeon. I have experienced the OR quite a few times, and have been on both sides of the table. I have to say I would love to work with any surgeon in the OR except for Orthopedics. The reason behind that is the surgery’s are pretty brutal when it comes to the skeletal system. Having been in the OR with an Orthopedic surgeon and seeing the use of the saws, hammers and other heavy equipment in order to perform the surgery just sends chills up my spine. I know that type of surgery is not for me. I think my favorite surgeries have to be that of the abdominal cavity. The specialties that I would least like to work for are few, and for simple reasons. Pediatrics is not a specialty for me since I have four children of my own. My Aunt is a neonatal nurse practitioner and I followed her in high school and saw the good, the bad, and the ugly so I can honestly say I could not emotionally handle that type of position. Podiatry is also an area I could not see myself working. The reason behind this is pretty silly, but here goes, I very much dislike other peoples feet especially if they are not well kept. I know in the medical field you will encounter feet on a daily basis, but I could not mainly work with feet on an everyday basis. My last specialty is Orthopedics for the reasons I noted above about the barbaric nature of the surgeries and treatments for the musculoskeletal system. Its just not for me.

  3. Thanks for your service, Dave. As far as I am concerned, veterans should get the day off with pay. My son in law had to work. We always took the day off from school. I’m not a veteran but I think they need to be honored, and probably more than one day. Thanks again.

    • Ferd: you are of course eleitntd to post your political beliefs as you see fit. However, this post seems to me to be a naive approach to where we are now as a country and equally as importantly, how we got here.As you may recall, when President George W. Bush took over the Presidency in 2001, the Federal Government was operating at a surplus. It was projected that if this surplus continued, the complete Federal Deficit would be paid off in 10 years!However, President Bush, ignoring the Federal Deficit, announced to the public that this surplus represented the moneys of the American tax-paying public and it should be returned to them. However, he and his Republican Congress did so in a very aggressive tax cut, not for one year to return the surplus, but to last for 10 years!Even if President Bush ignored paying down the deficit, which at that point has been largely created under the terms of Presidents George H. W. Bush and Ronald Reagan, he might have thought about keeping some of that surplus for a rainy day! That rainy day arrived on September 11, 2001! Instead of running back to Congress and suggesting they end that tax cut early, so that he could finance two wars that resulted from the events of that rainy day, President Bush and his Republican Congress passed a 2nd tax cut to last throughout the remainder of the initial 10 year period (as you may recall, Vice President Cheney has to give this 2nd tax cut his vote after the Senate deadlocked at 50-50).Well some would argue that wars will eventually end and the tax cuts had an expiration date, so their effect in dramatically increasing the Federal Deficit at least had a light somewhere at the end of a very long tunnel.But there was no such argument when the Republican Congress and President Bush created a brand new entitlement: Medicare Part D Prescription Drugs for our Senior Citizens and not paying for it. While I will agree with the argument that preventative prescription drugs for Seniors will reduce later illnesses and hence lower costs for Medicare, why does that law provide that Medicare cannot use its large bargaining power to negotiate down the price of prescription drugs?Under this law, written by the lobbyists for Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA), Medicare has only two choices: pay retail or do not buy the drug. Is that how your business operates: pay list price? Of course not, you have the ability to negotiate and get the best price possible! The Veterans Administration, which does not have such a wasteful requirement, pays on the average 40% less for the same prescription drugs.Paying list price on a federal entitlement that is not paid for, not only adds to the Federal Deficit, it does so forever!Perhaps you missed the fact that Republican Billy Tauzin, who marshaled this Medicare bill through the Republican Congress, then chose to resign from Congress and find work in the private sector: as a $1,000,000 per year job as the head of PhRMA. After five years he retired: a nice $5,000,000 payoff for a job well done to the detriment of the American Taxpayers.Did you happen to notice that the current Republican nominee for Vice President, Paul Ryan, was a loyal Republican soldier in Congress and voted for every one of these deficit exploding programs?You say: “Further, I don’t want the government to spend more than it has in its budget, expecting future generations to pay for it. That is immoral!” Did you happen to know that World War II was financed by War Bonds; which caused the Federal Deficit to explode for future generations to retire? If the Tea Party had as much influence in Congress as they do after the 2010 elections, we would all be speaking German today!“Taxes are the price we pay for a civilized society” – Associate Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes. But where did you get the idea that: “But I don’t want a government that forever wants more of the money I worked hard for, to spend in ways I don’t approve.”Go vote and have a decision in how your tax dollars are spent. But too many people today lose out in these elections to determine how the money should be spent and in a response, they follow the dictates of Grover Norquist who has publicly announced that he wants to shrink the size of government so that he can drown it in a bathtub!Ask all of the elected Republican Congressmen and Senators who have signed the Norquist anti-tax pledge: how are they going to pay for the war against Iran? They have handcuffed themselves into a position that is directly against the national security interests of this great country! They have sold Israel down the drain…“Demonized” by your President? Are you aware that not only has the Middle Class paid less taxes under President Obama then they did under President Bush, but also he has kept federal spending to its lowest percentage increase since President Eisenhower?Say what you want, but these facts are incontrovertible and the issues you complain about have nothing to do with the Democrats, but the very Republicans you chose to praise.

  4. I had a rather hard time chonisog just one type of physician I would want to work for. So many of them fascinate me, and with me not really going into any medical field other than support, I never gave this any thought in the past. After reading the list, I am more favorable of working for a neonatologist. It is difficult to think about how neonatologist physicians sometimes have the most difficult job in the world, but I can only imagine how amazing it would be to be a part of saving a baby’s life. I had a coworker once whose baby was born at 36 weeks, and her baby had a lot of heart and lung problems. There were concerns about whether or not they would ever fully develop once she had him, but after many months in the NICU, and many scares that happened during it, the doctors were able to save him and he is now a very healthy 5 year old. It is because of that I have a higher interest in the neonatologist field.I hate to say which type of physician I would care less to work for, and it is because I worry that many will take it the wrong way. When I was 16, I used to help my mom at an assisted living home as a caregiver. We would get to work at 7:00 A.M. every morning to prepare breakfast for four of the elderly men and women that we were caring for. We would then make sure that all bedding was changed, rooms were cleaned, meals were prepared, and appointments were handled. We worked 12 hour days, and they were always grueling. The owner of the home made sure that everyone had their medicine and made it to their doctor appointments on time. However, she was more worried about getting paid for her services than actually helping the elderly. She would yell at them if they did something wrong, and even call them terrible names. My mom reported her and we both quit our job, but it has always left a sting in my heart since then. It is because of my experience with that situation that I do not think I could ever work for a gerontologist. I know that the situations would be much different, but ever since my experience with caring for elderly individuals it is very hard for me to think about assisting a physician in geriatrics because I worry that someone else might treat the elderly in the same way the owner of the home did. I am a firm believer that the elderly deserve the ultimate care and comfort when going through any treatment and aging in general, but I do not think I could ever work in that environment again.

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