Posted: 10/02/08 04:37, Edited: 07/03/13 13:46
by Dave Mindeman
Newspapers have editorial pages to give opinions.... and that's fine. But when they give that opinion, you would expect that they would at least abide by some journalistic principle.
In a September 25th, 2008 editorial, the Faribault Daily News
doesn't give an opinion, they give political cover for John Kline while denigrating assertions made by Steve Sarvi.
They call it "politics at its worst". Well, they evidently haven't been paying attention to John Kline's methods. But as long as they are going to critcize the Sarvi campaign, let's examine the charge.
From the Editorial:In his effort to unseat U.S. House Rep. John Kline, challenger Steve Sarvi (DFL) is alleging through interviews with various media outlets, on his Web site and through television advertisements that the congressman doesn?t truly care about veterans. As evidence, Sarvi says Kline has suggested the military is spending too much on researching post-traumatic stress disorder. ...It?s also one that the evidence shows is patently false.
The "evidence" refers to this Kline assertion:As the Daily News Put It
: Asking the question of whether spending so much money on PTSD is pulling too much focus ? and money ? away from the huge number of leg and arm injuries being suffered in the current campaigns in Afghanistan and Iraq.As Sarvi put it: While suicides among veterans were approaching all-time highs, John Kline participated in a hearing held by the Military Personnel Subcommittee of the House Armed Services Committee and asked if ?we let this emphasis on PTSD . . . pull us away from this orthopedic effort??
Sarvi took exception to Kline's comments as being a real commitment to veterans.
But here is the Faribault Daily News Editorial defense: That was a fair question to ask considering the variety of serious wounds ? mental and physical ? our troops are coming home with and have come home with from all our country?s wars.
Tell me editorial board, you actually consider that acceptable? Are you telling us that the injuries our soldiers suffer in a time of war should be "triaged" according to what we can afford?
I don't care if there is a huge number of leg and arm injuries coming out of these campaigns -- TREAT THEM!
I also don't care how many PTSD cases are out there -- TREAT THEM!
And I also don't care if Wall Street bailouts or Auto Industy loans or propping up AIG is the crisis of the moment.... you still treat ALL our veterans injuries...PTSD or otherwise.
I don't care what it costs. Raise my damn taxes if you must...really I mean it. Every veteran that comes home from those wars (and I am thankful for every one that does) deserves the best medical treatment the richest country on earth can afford.
If John Kline thinks that "fiscal conservatism" has anything, ANYTHING, to do with which wounded soldiers get treated, then Kline deserves Sarvi's criticism and the additional criticism of any fair minded American citizen.
There was nothing unfair or untruthful about Steve Sarvi's criticism of John Kline's record. And the Disabled American Veterans agree... they gave John Kline a zero rating in 2004 and 2005 -- yes, zero.
So.. to the editorial board of the Faribault Daily News, I say this. Do you agree that health care for our veterans should be only what we can afford? Should injuries be prioritized based on cost? Should we send our young men and women off to war and then tell them we can't afford to help you when they come home?
John Kline's military service is not being questioned. He served honorably and well. Steve Sarvi also served his country honorably and well.
Sarvi has every right to question John Kline's commitment and the commitment of this administration to the coming home soldier.
You can claim Sarvi's opinion on the matter may be wrong (and opinions, by definition, cannot be "patently false" ), but the end result of the health outcomes for our veterans begs to differ.