Obama announces 'reverse bootcamp' for veterans

Departing service members will soon have access to a "reverse boot camp" that offers new veterans more robust transition services, said President Obama in a speech Monday afternoon before the Veterans of Foreign Wars convention in Reno, Nev.

Traditionally known as TAP (transition assistance program), the program has long provided service members with information about benefits as well as workshops on career options and job search skills. Veterans' advocates, however, have in recent years urged substantial changes to the program as the unemployment rate for former service members exceeded that of the national rate. Last August, the president convened a task force to overhaul TAP for the first time in 20 years.


The new initiative extends TAP from a three-day workshop to five to seven days, which includes a financial planning seminar, a redesigned employment workshop and a planning session in which service members can explore career options and talk to experts.

Service members will be also be able to meet with a counselor to discuss their career goals as well as VA benefits and resources.

"We'll provide the training they need to find that job, or pursue that education, or start that business," Obama said. "And just as they've maintained their military readiness, we'll have new standards of career readiness."

That training will also include the option to take a course tailored to a service member's specific career interest, whether it be a higher education degree, credentials in certain skills or small-business ownership.

The changes to TAP will be fully implemented by the end of 2013.

The unemployment rate for all veterans in June was lower than the national average at 7.4 percent, though the rate for Iraq and Afghanistan veterans was 9.5 percent.

Heather Ansley, vice president of veterans policy for the advocacy organization VetsFirst, told NBC News that the substantial changes promise to give service members more individualized guidance on how to successfully transition from military life.

"We’ve known for some time that TAP wasn’t fulfilling its mission of preparing folks," said Ansley.

By offering service members individualized counseling and job readiness sessions, Ansley said, TAP can better prepare new veterans based on a variety of factors, including their education, career goals and physical or psychological disabilities.

Ansley is hopeful that the TAP initiative will also help service members answer logistical questions about life outside of the military, including what to do without housing benefits and how to calculate what kind of paycheck is needed. The changes, she said, will help veterans learn "how to make that transition without being surprised."

Rebecca Ruiz is a reporter at NBC News. Follow her on Twitter here.

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My daughter spent nearly 6 yrs in the Navy- got discharged and prior to her departing she went to TAP class- great program...it really did help her with a lot of the transition! Glad Obama is making changes.

  • 44 votes
#1 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 6:43 PM EDT

Sounds like a good thing, but probably not Obama's idea. He may be taking credit , but I assume military folks proposed it.

  • 25 votes
#1.1 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 7:13 PM EDT

Doesn't matter whose idea it is, Obama is the one making it happen.

  • 70 votes
#1.2 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 7:26 PM EDT

Obama taking credit??? You ASSume military folks proposed it? As if they just decided to come up with the friggin idea after waiting for 20 YEARS?

Sheesh....Faux News should really be required to start off all their broadcasts with a disclaimer.

  • 37 votes
#1.3 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 7:46 PM EDT

Who cares who proposed it or is now making it happen, damn, everyone has to spin the politics. Good people who served our country well will get back in the game here, that's what is important.......

  • 45 votes
#1.4 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 8:02 PM EDT

Don,
Please pull your head out...the article DOESN'T say he is taking credit for the PROGRAM. It says he is EXPANDING it. Glasses are a good thing, you may want to try some. Although it may not help with comprehension.

This is a good thing, as a Iraq Veteren (twice) it would be nice to know if I get off active duty soon, I have some hope of assistance.

  • 49 votes
#1.5 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 8:03 PM EDT

@ Don: I never once heard President Obama take any credit for this. He is credited with organizing a task force to look into the areas of improvement and those things have been added to make the TAP more "user friendly". Why is that people like you are always so ready to go where you go? You know, Don, it really is okay to praise someone if they are doing something good. Don't worry, your party won't disown you if you like some things that the other side does. Get over it.

  • 49 votes
#1.6 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 8:08 PM EDT

a

    #1.7 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 8:36 PM EDT

    I for one have been an advocate of Military personell in the job market as I believe that having served in the military better prepares an individual to handle the problems of life. I know a lot of people do not believe that, but having served and talking to veterans which mainly agree with me. I know the employers who hire vets tend to agree also. In general they are more reliable and tend to follow instructions quicker and better. They have a greater respect for the chain of command or what ever you want to call the heirarchy of business. There are always exceptions to everything but what I have said about vets pretty much holds true. I do not know why a lot of people look down their noses at the man or woman who guarantees the freedom of this country. May be they are jealous and fear for their position in the job market because they know the vet is better prepared. The country needs to go back to the position it had in the past that the vet has priority on any job applied for over a non vet. These people protect our country and deserve better than they are being shown in the job market.

    • 14 votes
    #1.8 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 9:40 PM EDT

    ..

    • 1 vote
    #1.9 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 9:40 PM EDT

    As a conservative republican, I can finally say, "Well done!"

    • 15 votes
    #1.10 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 9:44 PM EDT
    Comment author avatarJack-467967Expand Comment Comment collapsed by the community

    That O'Bama guy is really somethin, walks on water, makes bullpucky sound like mana from heaven. Single handedly beat Osama into the ground. Wow. The man is full of crap, and people think he's a step up from , hmmmm, oh yeah, Joe Biden.

    • 12 votes
    #1.11 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 9:46 PM EDT

    Its election time.

    • 9 votes
    #1.12 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 9:46 PM EDT

    Who cares what Obama wants ....

    More and more American's don't want him anymore ....

    • 18 votes
    #1.13 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 10:00 PM EDT

    OBAMACAREs, Bigbenalaska!

    • 5 votes
    #1.14 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 10:06 PM EDT

    Nah, the same haters energized by losing the 2008 election are now even more enraged by Obama. He says the sky is blue, they shake their fists with rage. So we'll see, do we move on with trying to remain a civilized affluent country, or do we just become a hotbed of paranoid gun enthusiasts just waitin' to bark at an "illegal immigrant" which of course they'll always, always recognize on sight. Other than that, who knows?

    • 17 votes
    #1.15 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 10:08 PM EDT

    DON9876543

    Sounds like a good thing, but probably not Obama's idea. He may be taking credit , but I assume military folks proposed it.

    Pretty dickish thing to say. This President has done more for Service Members families than any before.

    • 34 votes
    #1.16 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 10:14 PM EDT

    Obama cares about spending our hard earned tax dollars that we don't really have anymore ....

    And giving it away like the $20 billion , him and Hillary have already given to Pakistan ....

    When one of our own states is in trouble , being California , with a $16 billion dollar debt ....

    • 6 votes
    #1.17 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 10:19 PM EDT

    Ben dont forget Laos, Vietnam, North Korea..................

    • 4 votes
    #1.18 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 10:39 PM EDT

    I wish the people that had really nothing but complaints could form their own chat place and rant away. I for one appreciate what this administration has attempted to provide the service members of this fine country..ATTA boy/girl to the People that made this happen..for providing more transitional services to military personell than really any administration ever.. Thank you to all service members for sticking your necks out for this country.

    • 22 votes
    #1.19 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 10:51 PM EDT
    Comment author avatarMorgan-314789Expand Comment Comment collapsed by the community

    When did BO have any right to tell those who fought for this country anything?

    • 7 votes
    #1.20 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 10:55 PM EDT

    Ben why should any of us or any other state bail out California? They have gotten themselves into the mess, let them pull theirselves out. 16 million can go to many other more worthy programs...like our veterans!!!

    • 8 votes
    #1.21 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 11:06 PM EDT

    Morgan-314789

    When did BO have any right to tell those who fought for this country anything?

    It's called the Constitution, Morgan. Most certainly a document you never read, believed in, honored... or fought for.

    • 22 votes
    #1.22 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 11:08 PM EDT

    Great ! just in time before America goes Bankrupt, you can count on that...

    • 2 votes
    #1.23 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 11:24 PM EDT

    Wow. Conservatives, seriously, if all you have to contribute is essentially 'Obama sucks' why are you even posting? We get that you are mostly suffering from ODS, and haven't the ability to even give him credit for walking upright. Most of the conservative contributions up to this point have been of utterly no value.

    He helps do a good thing for veterans (whether it was his idea or not, or he took credit for it or not), and all you can do is talk smack?

    I don't see how anyone could be proud to call themselves conservative anymore, when so few of you even approach conversations without a list of talking points that are irrelevant to almost all discussion.

    I don't have to belittle you, or make fun of you, or call you names, you all do a perfectly good job of marginalizing yourselves all on your own.

    • 22 votes
    #1.24 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 11:45 PM EDT

    The GNOP by definition must oppose this measure. They oppose anything and everything Obama does or proposes to do. And lest we forget, this same GNOP has done NOTHING for our veterans for decades other than send them to war on multiple deployments with inadequate body armor and not enough downtime in between. Up until they started railing that "Democrats don't support the troops", they have opposed every increase in pay or benefits that has come before them. It took a democrat-led congress and democratic president to strengthen the GI bill and help make a down-payment on what we the people owe them for their service. This is the truth of the GNOP. Untold billions for contractors and @!$%# for our brave in the armed forces. Thank you Mr. President!

    • 21 votes
    #1.25 - Tue Jul 24, 2012 12:04 AM EDT
    Comment author avatarjustoneguyExpand Comment Comment collapsed by the community

    SanityCheck

    this same GNOP has done NOTHING for our veterans for decades other than send them to war on multiple deployments

    Umm, your ignorance is showing Sanity....better Google up which party was Prez. when all the US wars were STARTED. Oh ya, better go back more than 30 of the last 200 years. LOL

    OBAMA=DISMAL FAIL

    • 1 vote
    #1.26 - Tue Jul 24, 2012 12:42 AM EDT

    SanityCheck

    this same GNOP has done NOTHING for our veterans for decades other than send them to war on multiple deployments

    Umm, your ignorance is showing Sanity....better Google up which party was Prez. when all the US wars were STARTED. Oh ya, better go back more than 30 of the last 200 years. LOL

    OBAMA=DISMAL FAIL

    Lol, you don't get the point of Sanity's post.

    DISMAL FAIL < justoneguy

    • 8 votes
    #1.27 - Tue Jul 24, 2012 1:33 AM EDT

    If it is boot camp in reverse, should there not be an adjustment in regard to civilian life and their emotional lives, too? Boot camp does more than take soildiers out of the job market and if they have been in war, it seems a bit of extra attention would be given to even the slightest chances of PTSD. The contrast between military land civilian life is great. Too bad Vietnam vets did not have a chance like this!

    It's a great idea and about time! No other President has been this actively involved in the post war care of vets.

    • 5 votes
    #1.28 - Tue Jul 24, 2012 7:14 AM EDT

    Great ! just in time before America goes Bankrupt, you can count on that...

    Yeah, we should just kick those veterans who fought for our country to the curb. What we really need is more tax breaks for the people who make more than $250 k/yr. Those 2 useless wars that dubya started didn't cost the taxpayers anything.

    • 8 votes
    #1.29 - Tue Jul 24, 2012 7:54 AM EDT

    TAP has been around for years, some bases / services have better programs than others in much the same way that some restaurants within the same chain have better food / service than others.

    I consider myself lucky in that the base where I retired had a pretty darn good TAP program. Things like the resume workshop, interview role play / advice / coaching session, dressing for success provided by a style coach, how the civilian workplace differs from a military workplace, etc were HUGE for a guy who hadn't had to deal with the job hunt process and the civilian work environment for over 20 years.

    Anything that any Commander-in-Chief - Dem, Repub, Indie, whatever - can do to help contribute to elevating the quality, improving the consistancy and keeping the TAP process current & relevant to the job market as it changes over time is a huge benefit to the country as well as the military participants. Good on you Mr. President.

    P.S. To all...You don't wear a tie with a button down collar...that style shirt is for business casual times when one wears a sport coat sans necktie...got that straight from the high profile corporate stylist who did the dress for success portion of my TAP class!

    • 2 votes
    #1.30 - Tue Jul 24, 2012 9:36 AM EDT

    TAP is a 20 year old program. And only a civilian no-load would call 7 days a "bootcamp." How about some reverse tech schools so our troops can actually do useful work when they get out.

      #1.31 - Thu Jul 26, 2012 2:25 PM EDT

      Eighteen vets (on average) commit suicide each day. Here is one powerful solution that is saving lives: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mqYTEShW3cA

        #1.32 - Sat Jul 28, 2012 4:40 PM EDT
        Reply
        Comment author avatar'TR' Rose IIExpand Comment Comment collapsed by the community

        Oh boy! Those corrupt Republican corporate political puppets are going to have fun with this one! They're the ones causing all the conflicts across the world because of their CAPITALISTIC GREED of oil & financial gain, instead they should be delighted that our illlustrious President Obama is trying to give back to the military what was taken from them because of the wars!

        • 11 votes
        Reply#2 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 6:52 PM EDT

        TR, the wars were all bipartisan, Democrats were threatening to invade IRAQ before Bush even came in office.

        Was John Kerry a republican ?

        "Without question, we need to disarm Saddam Hussein. He is a brutal, murderous dictator, leading an oppressive regime ... He presents a particularly grievous threat because he is so consistently prone to miscalculation ... And now he is miscalculating America's response to his continued deceit and his consistent grasp for weapons of mass destruction ... So the threat of Saddam Hussein with weapons of mass destruction is real ..." - Sen. John F. Kerry (D, MA), Jan. 23. 2003.

        • 3 votes
        #2.1 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 7:11 PM EDT

        Don, all based on cherry picked intelligence by Cheney and Rumsfeld. Most of the country was duped by Bush and his neo-should be- con-victs.

        • 20 votes
        #2.2 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 7:25 PM EDT

        Don,
        I don't know what history you are remembering, but there was no interest in invading Iraq before Bush entered the White House. He had to use Falsefied intellgence to persuade the Democrats and the other nations of the Coalition to support his agenda. Iraq had nothing to do with the "War on Terror", Saddam was a threat to his own people and that was it.

        Clinton had far more reason to enter Iraq than Bush did, since Saddam was thumbing his nose at the US and the UN during the entire inspection process that started in 1993. He ATTEMPTED to use diplomacy, if you remember, that's what Carter did, and failed misurably, though not in Iraq...that was in Iran. There was never a plan under the Dems to enter Iraq.

        You may want to stop commenting, since your foot seems to be taking up an awful lot of room in your mouth. FOX News is not the end all authority in the information age.

        • 18 votes
        #2.3 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 8:12 PM EDT

        OMG...you are blaming Republicans for making something out of themselves? Socialist....I will not pay for your goods or services

        • 2 votes
        #2.4 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 8:29 PM EDT

        Could you please give it a rest for 10 damn minutes. The article is about the military providing more comprehensive transition services for the people who deserve and need it the most. How about we just say thank you and STFU!

        • 9 votes
        #2.5 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 8:43 PM EDT

        Don...........don't embarass yourself anymore....do search on Bush lies Nation into Iraq war.....Read C. Powells books on how they lied to him if you only want repub view and knowledge.

        Every day an Iraq/Afgan war vet commits suicide.....give them a break, give them help, give them peace. They gave their lives.

        • 9 votes
        #2.6 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 8:58 PM EDT

        What a moron you are.....

        • 1 vote
        #2.7 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 9:33 PM EDT
        Reply

        Good call obama. This is why romney will not win. Give aways will win the day until bankruptcy

        • 16 votes
        Reply#3 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 7:06 PM EDT

        So jolly, helping our military transition to civilian life is a "give away". All the while the wealthy have the lowest income tax burden since before WWII. You make me sick.

        • 55 votes
        #3.1 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 7:22 PM EDT

        Bluecat - I couldn't have said it better (without using profanity). Thank you!

        • 26 votes
        #3.2 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 7:56 PM EDT

        Jolly,
        So I take it you have been on the recieving end of a bullet many times and had rockets hitting where you sleep on a regular basis. I hope you sleep well in your existance...I for one don't appreciate your lack of consideration for those who put their lives on the line for your piece of mind and your ability to vomit to the public.

        I've said it before and I'll say it again..."I will defend to the death your right to free speach." No matter how screwed up you are. It's a volunteer Army (military) so I don't exclude my brothers in Brown, Blue and White. We make the sacrifices, so you don't have to.

        • 24 votes
        #3.3 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 9:33 PM EDT

        I guess it would be more effective if I spelled Speech correctly.

        • 4 votes
        #3.4 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 9:45 PM EDT
        Comment author avatarJohn KipyardExpand Comment Comment collapsed by the community

        Hey scumbag, 6 years in the Corps,

        paid the price, dump the inept homo in the white house.

        • 2 votes
        #3.5 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 9:52 PM EDT

        Damn, they seriously unlearned you in the Corps if you really did serve. Are you waiting to tack a crooked cross on your flag and chase after it?

        • 4 votes
        #3.6 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 10:11 PM EDT

        I'm having trouble with the correction process here on Newsvine too.

        • 1 vote
        #3.7 - Tue Jul 24, 2012 12:42 AM EDT

        Well Jolly, it sure worked for Bush. Remember when, in the 2000 campaign, he said the Federal gov't has too much of your tax money and that if he was elected he would give it back as tax rebates? A politician promising to give you money for your vote and you Republicans completely fell for it. Just couldn't wait for that check in the mail. That's when I lost any respect for Republicans.

        • 3 votes
        #3.8 - Tue Jul 24, 2012 1:47 PM EDT

        The pathetic thing is they're buying our votes with our own money.

        • 1 vote
        #3.9 - Thu Jul 26, 2012 2:27 PM EDT
        Reply

        It takes how long to break down a civilian and create a soldier in Boot Camp - 5 - 7 days? It takes how long to transition a soldier from being a Warrior to a civilian - 5 - 7 days?

        "We'll provide the training they need to find that job, or pursue that education, or start that business," Obama said. "And just as they've maintained their military readiness, we'll have new standards of career readiness."

        What exactly is our illustrious leader smoking?

        What a Chicken Sh** way to treat our Heros........

        • 8 votes
        Reply#4 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 7:18 PM EDT

        You know what...I am an ex-infantry. Got a Bronze Star. I was not in any way a hero, and a lot of the guys I served with weren't, either. Some were dense, some were braggarts, some were cowards at times. Very few were really heroes. We toss that around too much.

        • 24 votes
        #4.1 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 8:36 PM EDT

        Al,
        I don't know what you've been reading about Basic Training, but the Basic I attended was 8 weeks, infantry basic is 15 weeks. Basic now is 9 weeks for non-infantry military specialties. Marine Basic is 17 weeks (I believe, not being a Marine) Even the Air Force Boot is longer than 7 days.

        Transition training used to be 3-5 days, and was a glorified counselling session. It was very helpful, but not too comprehensive. Extending it and making it more of a continuing program is not a bad thing. This a start, perhaps it will be looked at again in the future to make it more comprehensive. Before I get out, I plan to see what they offer.

        • 16 votes
        #4.2 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 9:42 PM EDT

        Hey Buffalo, I think you are a bs lying low life lefty handoute,r give us more about your bronze star.

        • 1 vote
        #4.3 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 9:55 PM EDT

        When I got out I was given a hand shake from our First Sargent for my years of service.

        • 6 votes
        #4.4 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 9:59 PM EDT

        That sergeant was a lucky man then to have been able to shake your hand roc1960 ....

        • 5 votes
        #4.5 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 10:03 PM EDT

        Thanks, I appreciate that!

        • 2 votes
        #4.6 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 10:08 PM EDT

        I'm a member of the VFW and spend a lot of time hanging out with other "Veterans of Foreign wars". From WWII onward. The thing is, ANY of them that have medals like bronze stars, silver stars, etc, never mention them or brag about earning them. We often only know they had them when they pass away and we find out at the funeral. I'm glad the President is helping to do more for my fellow Vets.

        • 18 votes
        #4.7 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 10:41 PM EDT

        The reason that most vets don't mention their medals or brag about them is because they were in the same position as I was "Scared $hitless" My heart was in my throat from the time I set foot in Vietnam until I left. I seen men do things that they never would have thought of doing to stay alive and try to keep the men around them alive. Sacrifice themselves for the good of their company. Drag the wounded to safety only to take a bullet in the next volly. Watched the fear turn into pure adrenilan. In my eyes the medals that I recieved really mean nothing. Every man and woman that puts on a uniform for their country are hero's. I salute you.

        • 2 votes
        #4.8 - Tue Jul 24, 2012 9:59 AM EDT

        Hey there Al S from OK.... Do you really think a soldier is trained in 7 days??? more like 7-8 weeks for just the basics. You need additional training for specialization of which some job skills take nearly a year to complete the training phase. Soldiers who ETS have a GI Bill and can go to school, some choose to find jobs closely aligned with their military occupation, in healthcare for example; others may have electronic skills that can be transitioned into the civilian world. For those GI's who sit on their butts waiting for something to happen, guess what...nothing happens. For those who have enough ambition to get out of the bars and go to classes, the education centers offer college courses that can be pursued while on active duty. Weather you are a civilian or an active duty military member, you often have to be self motivated to get ahead in life, regardless of what your vocational training encompasses. If you are going to spend most of your free time sitting on your keester, you aren't going to find success unless you are like the Romney clan who were all born with a golden spoon shoved up their arse.

        Maybe...just maybe, if those stupid and greedy repugnant GOP obstructionist were more concerned about the people they represent rather than their own self enrichment, you would see some cooperation in Congress to address issues for veterans and the outreach programs they need established. You should shut your face when you even think of talking about our President the way you do, it is your brain cell that appears smoked. Maybe you can go move up north where Michele Bachman lives and practice your treason with her.

          #4.9 - Tue Jul 24, 2012 3:15 PM EDT

          Boot camp is just for seeing if you have your head screwed on straight-- dont quit and pay attention to detail. You need a tech school or A school before you learn to do anything useful and that's weeks to months. THEN unit training. Seven days is like... filling out the paperwork.

            #4.10 - Thu Jul 26, 2012 2:32 PM EDT
            Reply

            i am weary of the partisan posters - ok, I live in a coutry where we're allowed our personal opinion and allowed to speak it - but damn, can you partisan folks not find a smidge of good in our current leader? And what of the next one? He'll be beholden to all those large corporate donors - unlike the current guy who is getting much of his dollars in very small amounts from the people. You partisan folks, your country needs you, needs all of us to stand together - E Plurbus Unum. It is too weep.

            • 21 votes
            Reply#5 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 7:28 PM EDT

            I think they're discussing Prozac on another post.

            • 1 vote
            #5.1 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 8:30 PM EDT

            Kate has a point. Hate has become a way of life. Glenn, if you can't say something hateful, you apparently don't say anything. Bush made mistakes, but he was a decent man. Same is true of Obama.

            • 12 votes
            #5.2 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 8:38 PM EDT

            can we all hold hands?

            • 1 vote
            #5.3 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 8:44 PM EDT
            Comment author avatarJohn KipyardExpand Comment Comment collapsed by the community

            Kate- Nope, he is an inept lyinq quasi socialistic lying megalomaniac.

            When the scumbag is dumped, we will have grand jury waiting for him

            • 1 vote
            #5.4 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 9:59 PM EDT

            John, is that an all-white jury? American history apparently changes nothing, yes?

            • 4 votes
            #5.5 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 10:13 PM EDT

            John is hateful, sure...but he used "lying" twice int he same insult. You have to give him credit.

            • 5 votes
            #5.6 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 11:14 PM EDT

            John, my hateful little bundle of semi-literate ranting, what exactly do you want as "proof"? I was there. I got one. I am not sure I deserved it. Some of the real heroes I knew got the same thing. Not all soldiers are heroes. Some of them were there to avoid prison, at least by their own accounting. Not all military people are "heroes". Frankly, about 90% or the guys I knew in the Nam were wanting mostly to get back home.

            • 6 votes
            #5.7 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 11:24 PM EDT

            Kate ~ George Soros ring a bell ?

              #5.8 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 11:29 PM EDT

              Kate - the Conservative representation here proves which side the hate and ignorance comes from without a doubt. Conservatives are as Conservatives do.

              • 2 votes
              #5.9 - Tue Jul 24, 2012 7:26 AM EDT
              Reply

              Just another step, by this Administration to stand for our veterans.... instead of cutting benefits, as has been the practice in recent Administrations.

              • 24 votes
              Reply#6 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 7:39 PM EDT

              Right. President Carter removed the Dental benefit for military retireees, so we all have to pay for our own dental care, now President Obama is requesting that Tri-Care significantly raise the co-payment for retirees medical benefits. The only president in recent memory that has given a hoot about our benefits was President Reagan. So Steven-791492, please don't comment on something you haven't a clue about. I've been living it for many years now. This is why the military vote, both active and retired almost always votes republican.

              • 11 votes
              #6.1 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 8:15 PM EDT

              so steven. my tricare prime is going to cost me more in october but i wont see my cost of living raise untill january. if i get one at all. and then i will see my dental increase to.

              • 3 votes
              #6.2 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 8:40 PM EDT
              • 5 votes
              #6.3 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 8:48 PM EDT

              I've read this document. Exactly where does it address the cost of the co-payment of Tricare (standard and prime)? Or dental care whatsoever? It doesn't, in fact most of these programs have been in effect since President Bush was in office. And 90% of what wasn't only applies to about 15% of Veterans. I really get discusted when polititians take credit for something that was already there.

              • 4 votes
              #6.4 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 8:57 PM EDT

              I will now stop beating my head against this wall....... I understand your unhappy, about your health care.... join the club so am I.

              • 4 votes
              #6.5 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 9:47 PM EDT

              I now understand expanding the transition assistance program, as well as anything else this administration has done for veterans, is a bad thing, apparently.

              Thank you for bringing me up to speed.

              • 4 votes
              #6.6 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 9:56 PM EDT

              Navy, Dont forget Carter cut out the GI training bill, It was reinstated by Reagan but was not retroactive.

              • 4 votes
              #6.7 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 10:04 PM EDT

              The primary function of the federal government is to protect the country. Over the past two centuries the role of the federal government has expanded to include so many things it has no business doing.

              That being said, in order to protect the country, we need soldiers. These soldiers sacrifice so the rest of us can go about doing whatever we want to with our lives, protected.

              When these soldiers are done serving, they deserve the best we can offer. Taking care of our soldiers is one of the few things I gladly pay taxes for!

              • 6 votes
              #6.8 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 10:24 PM EDT
              Reply

              If Jesus, himself, came and declared Obama a saint, you would be surprised how fast Christianity would fall.

              • 18 votes
              Reply#7 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 7:39 PM EDT
              Comment author avatarJohn KipyardExpand Comment Comment collapsed by the community

              Scumbag, you are truly, with out merit, worth. honor, integrity or honor

                #7.1 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 10:02 PM EDT

                No John, you're the waste of skin without honor here. I hope your sheets still fit.

                • 8 votes
                #7.2 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 10:15 PM EDT

                John, Blue is over here, you were talking to a mirror. But at least you were correct that time around.

                • 2 votes
                #7.3 - Tue Jul 24, 2012 12:45 AM EDT

                But John, do you think he has any honor?

                  #7.4 - Tue Jul 24, 2012 10:45 AM EDT
                  Reply

                  How is it that we can afford to pay food, medical, housing, education, and who knows what other expenses for illegal aliens and we can only give our most patriotic citizens an extra couple of days of counseling? Take all of the money and services going to the illegals and give it to our heroes. They won't sit back and live the easy life because of this assistance. They will take it and move themselves and our country forward. They gave and gave for us. Let's give them something substantial back.

                  • 13 votes
                  Reply#8 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 7:46 PM EDT

                  Actually veterens have lots of benefits available to them, from health care, home loans, disability benefits and great education benefits.

                  • 16 votes
                  Reply#9 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 7:53 PM EDT

                  And who told you that whooper of a lie Jen? Health care gone when we retire, we have to pay for premiums, unless we are disabled and that is a nightmare in itself, home loans, might be a reduced interest amount, but we still have to pay our own mortgage, disability benefits only apply if your dsiabled...duh!!! and great education, hell we paid into it for 20 god damn years, so it's ours. Who have you been talking to???

                  • 5 votes
                  #9.1 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 11:15 PM EDT

                  Thank you Steelermama, you beat me to it. My dad and brother in law were both promised healthcare for life if they retired after 20 years. They both did, yet both ended up paying for their healthcare, and the cost seems to go up pretty frequently. They were lied to. But neither regret their service.

                  • 4 votes
                  #9.2 - Tue Jul 24, 2012 1:08 AM EDT
                  Reply

                  At least now they are doing SOMETHING. When I got discharged from the Army, I was a soldier one minute, and a civilian the next. No transition whatsoever, aside from a group class for about an hourr where everyone was drifting off to sleep, including the presenter.

                  • 7 votes
                  Reply#10 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 7:57 PM EDT

                  about time.

                  • 3 votes
                  Reply#11 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 8:08 PM EDT

                  I hope this helps, I did not get much help when I got out. Having to worry about the rent and other bills for the 1st time ever at 30 was not a good thing.

                  • 4 votes
                  Reply#12 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 8:08 PM EDT

                  This is a fine element of a well crafted economic program. Excellent work.

                  It gets done of course because it's one of the few things the Grand Obstructionist Poopies cannot stop!

                  • 14 votes
                  Reply#13 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 8:13 PM EDT

                  Okay, that is just frickin funny as all hell! Poopies! LOL Thanks for the laugh of the day!

                  • 3 votes
                  #13.1 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 8:44 PM EDT

                  Happy to help.

                  • 1 vote
                  #13.2 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 9:08 PM EDT

                  You are truly an inept lying low life left scumbag, with our merit, worth or value.

                  One more low life lefty handouter without merit, worth or morals.

                    #13.3 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 10:18 PM EDT

                    It's about damned time we did MORE for our Vet!

                    • 2 votes
                    #13.4 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 11:02 PM EDT

                    John ~ you just copy and paste because you can't think of anything intelligent to say?

                    • 2 votes
                    #13.5 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 11:32 PM EDT

                    And in 4 posts John is one of the fastest to earn an IGNORE in history.

                    I ignore very few people, but it hasn't said anything of any value thus far, don't see it starting any time soon.

                    • 3 votes
                    #13.6 - Tue Jul 24, 2012 12:47 AM EDT
                    Reply

                    I have been saying this for years...........implement ASAP. The whole Military socialization effect must be removed.

                    • 2 votes
                    Reply#14 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 8:13 PM EDT

                    What - a LOBOTOMY to make them FORGEt what they've done, and what has been done to other people? By a monstrous government out of control? And you think WE BELIEVE you can so easily DEprogram someone? Or is that why the kids are being raised on blood gore and sex - so they won't have a problem murdering people when the government wants them to????

                    • 1 vote
                    Reply#15 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 8:17 PM EDT

                    To bad you can't Debootcamp all the abused children in the world so they don't grow up to be sadistic leaders and eat cake.

                      Reply#16 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 8:19 PM EDT

                      When I got out TAP was a bad joke. I'm not sure an extra 2 or 3 days is going to help someone who served a couple hitches beginning at the tender young age of 18 adjust well to the rigors of civilian life. We were given 3 hots and a cot every day even if we blew our paychecks on payday so no 3 or 7 day outchop from a 4, 6 or 8 year hitch is going to teach them how to get by on the outside. I'm this far down the road and I still don't really have the gist of how folks do this civilian life thing. When I see homeless vets who just can't seem to get it together, all I can think of is how being provided for so well while in service could have led to them (and myself) not developing the coping skills needed to survive on the outside. I've been lucky to have a good support network in my family but without them I could easily have wound up on the street. Something more than TAP is needed to help vets get it together after their tours are up.

                      • 4 votes
                      Reply#17 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 8:21 PM EDT

                      Yeah but they can have a Muslim psychiatrist at Ft. Hood to help those returning home?

                      Was the guy who just bombed the Israeli bus last week let out of Club Gitmo?

                      • 4 votes
                      Reply#18 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 8:22 PM EDT

                      Anything run by the government is below par...just look at Veteran's hospitals. Why isn't this program available for ALL veterans? Obama will try to take the credit for this one come election time...he's gonna need WAAAAAAY more than that to get the votes this time. Fortunately, for MY America, he will NOT be re-elected. Thank GOD

                      • 8 votes
                      Reply#19 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 8:25 PM EDT

                      TAP is available for all vets- it's required. everyone has to go to TAP when they get out. And as for va hospitals- i have received the best care in my life at va medical centers. they aren't the nightmares from the vietnam era just so you know. in LA i had docs from ucla and usc and in florida i had docs from uf. best in the practice and the va system is and should be a model for socialized american healthcare.

                      • 20 votes
                      #19.1 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 8:29 PM EDT

                      Shanaldo....you must be from South America eh? So anything run by the government is below par....Like to say that to those in the military right now? Want to tell anyone of them they are sub par? My sister worked as a surgical nurse in a V.A. hospital for about 15 years, the only disapointment she had was Bush and politicians that sent soldiers into Iraq, and she is a teabagger! You haven't a clue what you talk about....General blather......

                      • 3 votes
                      #19.2 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 10:28 PM EDT

                      I will say though the paperwork is a nightmare at times.

                      • 4 votes
                      #19.3 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 10:45 PM EDT
                      Reply

                      It was McCain and Republicans who opposed Obama when he improved the GI Bill. Bachmann campaigned promising to cut VA funding. The VA needs work, but it has improved under Obama. I'm a disabled vet and I can attest to the improvements made under Obama. Why any active duty or military veteran would vote GOP is a mystery to me.

                      • 19 votes
                      Reply#20 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 8:27 PM EDT

                      Because they (military personnel) swore to uphold the Constitution against enemies foreign and domestic and Obama hasn't

                      And McCain is no different than George H Bush.. all for the NWO

                      • 7 votes
                      #20.1 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 8:34 PM EDT

                      Glenn: Could you please cite where you have received information that Obama has not upheld the Constitution? I would be very interested in reading this.

                      • 11 votes
                      #20.2 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 8:48 PM EDT

                      NDAA ~ look it up ~ free speech?

                      Small Arms Treaty with United Nations~ look it up trying to bypass 2nd Amendment

                      Bypassing Congress in sending military personnel to Middle East

                      Bypassing Congress on Illegal Immigration recently ~ read the news

                      • 5 votes
                      #20.3 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 8:59 PM EDT

                      Yeah, repubs trying to cut vet benefits for years. Even blocked healthcare for 911 responders right up to last winter until exposed on tv show, the next day they passed it except for a few who pledged to vote against any bill that would help Obama's image. Here is a quick example of repub anti vet actions.

                      From www.disabledveterans.org april 2011.

                      Remember Michele Bachmanns’s attempted $4 billion cut from disabled veterans compensation? Well, “they’re ba-ack…” Except this time they are looking to cut away at our VA healthcare.

                      Republican Paul Ryan and the House of Representatives are looking to end VA healthcare for over 1.3 million veterans who are Priority 7 & 8. These veterans are the least disabled veterans using the system, usually with disability ratings of 0 percent or no service-connected disability. According to the Congressional Budget Office “Option 35,” the cuts would leave 130,000 veterans with no healthcare alternative. This means veterans with conditions not recognized by the VA, like certain diseases from Agent Orange exposure, would have to pay for healthcare out of pocket if they had not other service connected disability.

                      Currently, the VA spends over $4 billion yearly to treat these vets, despite co-pays intended to offset the expense. Ryan’s cuts are intended to save $6 billion off the VA’s tab and $62 billion over the next 10 years. Instead of merely increasing the co-pay or taxing Wall Street, Congress wants to just cut your benefits out, all together.

                      Disabled American Veterans (DAV) is fighting the across the board cut because many of the veterans in question have come to rely on VA healthcare over the years. In times when healthcare costs are astronomical, these veterans will go without the care they were promised, if the proposal becomes law. DAV voiced additional concerns that this attempt is just the start of a gradual and specifically focused erosion of veterans’ benefits.

                      • 12 votes
                      #20.4 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 9:14 PM EDT

                      I'm for cutting Politicians benefits and terms. They should have the same as they want us to have and that is not the case.

                      If Repubicans can't support our military when they come home that is wrong.

                      I think the American people have been caught in the cross hairs of both parties manipulating the system and us.

                      • 3 votes
                      #20.5 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 9:28 PM EDT

                      The President is Commander of the Military so when he is done then he should only get the same benefits Vets get.

                      • 10 votes
                      #20.6 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 10:15 PM EDT

                      Hear, hear

                      • 2 votes
                      #20.7 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 10:20 PM EDT

                      That might even sound reasonable.

                      • 2 votes
                      #20.8 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 11:28 PM EDT

                      I'm for cutting Politicians benefits and terms.

                      The President is Commander of the Military so when he is done then he should only get the same benefits Vets get.

                      The president, senators, and representatives are civilian federal employees and get the same benefits as other civilian employees. No more, no less, and that includes paying into Social Security and Medicare.

                      The armed forces by design report to a civilian (the president), who of course has many duties besides CiC. A so-called originalist ought to be aware of this. The president is therefore be compensated as a civilian. It has been this way since George Washington took the oath of office.

                      • 5 votes
                      #20.9 - Tue Jul 24, 2012 3:19 AM EDT

                      CiC used to be the senior general officer in a distance theater of war until some potus (forget which one) wanted to feel more important, claimed the title and switch from heart salutes to military salutes.

                        #20.10 - Thu Jul 26, 2012 2:41 PM EDT
                        Reply

                        Yikes. We can argue all day long about either side of politics. When it comes to our veterans we should all stand in unity, bow our heads and say THANK YOU!

                        It's great that they're planning on expanding the program and I hope what ever changes they make are effective and not simply more money, more layers of bureaucracy.

                        Many soldiers have skills that should be transferred to jobs here. Firefighters, police, security, paramedics, even drivers. The Armed Forces should certify these guys when they get out. Municipalities, for some reason, require their own certification and training programs and those programs are hard to get into....depriving our vets entry. Giving proper credentials upon discharge would go a long way in getting our guys and gals good jobs right away.

                        Just an idea.

                        • 14 votes
                        Reply#21 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 8:30 PM EDT

                        There are some who can disassociate themselves from the "art of war" and there are some who can't.

                        Some people can be a cop and see an autopsy and some people can't.

                        Some people can be a proctologist and some can't.

                        At least the U.S. government is starting to realize that not all people can handle the tragedy of war the same and something needed to be implemented and enhanced to help the returning troops.

                        Thank you.......President Obama for making it happen........finally!

                        • 15 votes
                        Reply#22 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 8:31 PM EDT

                        I see your point about the proctoloists...

                        you must be thanking Obama for eliminating Don't ask Don't tell ?

                        • 2 votes
                        #22.1 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 8:42 PM EDT

                        I am.

                        • 4 votes
                        #22.2 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 8:50 PM EDT

                        you must be proud

                        • 2 votes
                        #22.3 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 9:04 PM EDT

                        Glenn..............get a life, please!

                        And while you're at it take off the blinders and quit being one of the "sheeple"!!!

                        • 11 votes
                        #22.4 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 9:04 PM EDT

                        I'm an American who still believes in the Constitution as originally intended.

                        I'm not for a Socialist state or a dictatorship as to where we're heading

                        so if standing for the Declaration of Independence is considered 'sheeple' count me in ! :)

                        • 2 votes
                        #22.5 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 9:14 PM EDT

                        No, scumbag, you aren't you are one more leftuy, looking for a handout

                        • 1 vote
                        #22.6 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 10:22 PM EDT

                        "The Constitution According to Glenn" as written by Glenn, for Glenn only. He has spoken.

                        Glenn. "We the people"....means every citizen....it does not say "We the Glenn." Baaaa baaaa

                        • 7 votes
                        #22.7 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 10:37 PM EDT

                        Starsailing time to come back to earth your lack of oxygen is effecting your brain

                        You Commie pinko lol

                        • 2 votes
                        #22.8 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 11:01 PM EDT

                        I'm pretty sure the founding fathers writing indicate exactly what they meant.

                        Of the people by the people and for the people but this government was designed for a moral people , not the freedom to do as one pleases according to your own precepts and ideas but acccording to the priniciples this country was founded on and whether you like it or not it was founded on the Bible. And that's where the contention lies. Those of you who hate God or are atheist wanting to change this country to be like Iran or Russia or China maybe Cuba...?

                        • 2 votes
                        #22.9 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 11:07 PM EDT

                        No Glenn, NOT FOUNDED ON THE BIBLE.

                        Not at all. Jeezum criminy, you'd think being in the military might have given you more insight into our country, but you seem a confused as ever.

                        No, if we were like Iran we would have a THEOLOGY, which is a country BASED ON A RELIGION.

                        YOU want a country like Iran my friend, whether you are bright enough to see it or not.

                        • 8 votes
                        #22.10 - Tue Jul 24, 2012 12:52 AM EDT

                        Glenn writes.....but this government was designed for a moral people.

                        Let me guess Glenn...on your planet...you get to decide who is moral right? Or is it the voices you hear in your head that tell you who is moral or not and who is naughty or nice?

                        Get a clue Glenn...thinking is the best way to travel.......

                        • 7 votes
                        #22.11 - Tue Jul 24, 2012 1:16 AM EDT

                        Glenn: You do realize that we are not living in the same time as when the Constitution was created? The world is a very much different place. We as a nation have really evolved and what once was, has and will again be amended where it needs to be. And who are you to decide what the founding fathers idea of a moral people WAS. Again, the world is a much different place, or do you still prefer that men wear those funny little wigs? Now, that to me was always very strange that men would wear flowing white wigs! Glenn, do you own such wigs?

                          #22.12 - Tue Jul 24, 2012 2:41 PM EDT
                          Reply

                          I've got a more practical idea that will save tax dollars: Don't send these boys and girls to fight in wars that are meaningless to Americans. They won't suffer the horrors and can serve their country better by getting a reasonably priced education and pursue their productive rather than destructive careers at home. Is that too complicated for Washington and the Pentagon?

                          • 9 votes
                          Reply#23 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 8:46 PM EDT

                          I usually disagree with President Obama but not on this. Our Veterans deserve every bit of help and support we can give them. Good job President Obama!

                          • 21 votes
                          Reply#24 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 8:49 PM EDT

                          Thank you for being honest and honorable enough to call this as it is, a good thing.

                          Those who can't are only making themselves look very, very foolish.

                          • 4 votes
                          #24.1 - Tue Jul 24, 2012 12:53 AM EDT

                          I agree AKansan63. Can't stand the guy or his policies most of the time, but he's dead-on this time. Well done, Mr. President.

                          • 3 votes
                          #24.2 - Tue Jul 24, 2012 1:12 AM EDT

                          "Joining Forces"...

                          website from the whitehouse to help our men and women in uniform, go here, check it out...

                          peace to all..:http://www.whitehouse.gov/joiningforces

                          • 1 vote
                          #24.3 - Tue Jul 24, 2012 2:43 AM EDT

                          no body forget.....our young men who lost their lives like this:

                          http://mssparky.com/2008/07/senator-casey-wants-clarification/

                          faulty wiring due through contractors, or oversight.

                          or lack of oversight.

                            #24.4 - Tue Jul 24, 2012 1:34 PM EDT
                            Reply

                            Fire up the WPA and CCC and put these soldiers to work rebuilding America.

                            • 16 votes
                            Reply#25 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 8:50 PM EDT

                            exactly.

                            • 4 votes
                            #25.1 - Mon Jul 23, 2012 9:17 PM EDT
                            Reply
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