Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Criminal Bureaucracy

Bureaucracy that is by-design difficult to navigate, full of "visit our website" phone answering services, postal-mail-only service departments, closed-loop service flow, and constant error, is criminal.

After I applied for the Post 9-11 GI Bill in July, my claim was denied, then after mailing additional "evidence" to prove my service, my claim was approved, but for the wrong program and for the wrong amount for that wrong program.

I called the regional office and was told that because I have a check for $154 (despite being entitled to nearly $4,000), that the system is working. The agent couldn't be much more helpful than that because the only paperwork in his system was the original denial letter. His insightful interpretation of that letter was that I needed to continue fulfilling my service obligation. He reassured me, though, that he would submit an inquiry...to someone...somewhere...stating something.

So thanks Jack [we're not allowed to provide last names] operator 4204 and everyone at Veteran's Affairs for reminding that no matter how frustrating this process gets, at least I don't work for the government anymore and am therefore no longer accomplice to that criminal bureaucracy.