Thursday Numbers

It’s Thursday and that means “Thursday Numbers.”

In case you’re new around here, “Thursday Numbers” is the weekly column where I take a look at the numbers that are in the news (in descending order) and provide commentary sometimes sprinkled with sarcasm. Everyone and everything is fair game.

This week I write about Powerball, yoga pants, Jon Krakauer, Bob Simon, “Fifty Shades of Grey,” “Saturday Night Live,” Jon Stewart, unemployment, Abraham Lincoln, Veterans Affairs, Brian Williams, and much more!

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VA Secretary: Mission Impossible?

Your mission Robert, should you decide to accept it, will be to fix the Department of Veterans Affairs…

It’s time to play the Mission Impossible theme song.

President Barack Obama nominated former Procter & Gamble CEO Robert McDonald to take over the Department of Veterans Affairs.

McDonald is a veteran, which is a good thing. He graduated from the U.S. Military Academy at West Point.

The Associated Press reported McDonald donated money to Obama’s opponent in 2012, Mitt Romney, which shows me that Obama may be selecting who he thinks can best do the job. McDonald also donated to House Speaker John Boehner.

I asked my Congressman, Steve Daines, via Twitter if he knew Robert McDonald from his Procter & Gamble days, but I have yet to receive a response.

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The Sunday Message

“To care for him who shall have borne the battle and for his widow, and his orphan” -President Abraham Lincoln, Second Inaugural Address (March 1865)

On Monday (November 11) our country will pause to honor our veterans. We should always be praying for the men and women who are serving in our armed forces and for their families. We should pray for those who were injured serving our country. We should pray for those who did not return and for their loved ones.

We should always be thankful for those who serve.

“This nation will remain the land of the free only so long as it is the home of the brave.” – Elmer Davis



Average VA Disability Claim: 262 Days

According to a report from McClatchy Newspapers, “Processing time for disability claims at the Department of Veterans Affairs worsened in a majority of its regional offices last year, and the VA has struggled with its much-anticipated plan to correct those problems.”

McClatchy also reports, “Between fiscal 2011 and fiscal 2012, the time it took to complete the average claim rose from 188 days to 262 days.”


The Department of Veterans Affairs in Montana (Fort Harrison) was chosen (with much fanfare) to take part in this new “paperless” way of reviewing disability claims. So far it looks like a failure. The Inspector General of the VA reported that the “VA will continue to face challenges in meeting its goal of eliminating the backlog of disability claims processing by 2015.”

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