I love ZZ Top. They have tons of great material. But then, sometimes I come across some too. Mine is more of the kind that helps Vets-not their psyche-unless you count the win that finally puts them on Easy Street. I spend an inordinate amount of time dumpster diving on SMC as most know. Every VA document in a Vet’s file tells a story. Some are inconsequential but the ones that bite are favorable findings of fact. And when VA is stupid enough to give me the ammo, I’m all over them like white on rice. What can be more humorous than telling them “You’re the ones who insist he needs a&a, not me.”

 Since it  seems that every time I publish a really keen way to skin the VA cat, I’m going to put up one of my brand new  tricks tomorrow about 5 hours before the show and take it down afterwards. Leaving it up will only result in a VA “modification” and eventual future defeat for anyone trying it. Seems them fellers in DC actually read the articles I publish. Imagine that. You can find the document at the bottom below Kilroy…

I remember back in the mid 2014s Under Secretary for Benefits Allison Hickey (USB) was having a heart-to-heart Kumbaya meeting with Congress and the subject of DBQs came up. The complaint was that a DBQ supplied to Vets didn’t have a place for a doctor to insert the nexus medical opinion. It (the DBQ) was nothing more that a recital of the Vet’s current medical condition-and pretty damn skinny at that. Rep. Takano or one of his  buddies was wondering when VA was going to revamp the DBQs to provide that all-important box where the good doctor could insert his “at least as likely as not” prognostication. Allison cut in and allowed as how they were working on that and actually had a new replacement document ready but they were just using up the existing stock to save money.

There was one slight problem with this statement. All the documents were in .PDF format-i.e., electronic documents. There simply was no stack of forms in the back rooms of VAROs across our fruited plains full of superseded documents. It was a complete fig newton of the imagination. The Congressfolk bought into it hook, line and sinker.

And we’re gonna talk all about that DBQ subject tomorrow. I’ll also give you a broad overview of what we learned at the fall conferences for our continuing legal education (CLEs). I can’t share the documents and Power Point stuff with you because it’s proprietary information but I can share the gist of it.

This business of the VA’s IMO shitlist blog has had some interesting side stories. For the latest development on that, feel free to click on this link and go back to that blog. Scroll down to the bottom to the P.P.S postscript. Today I  received an affirmed appeal judgement on one of the unfortunate maligned VA IMO specialists that was recently decided. Don’t shoot me. I’m the messenger. I sure didn’t author the shitlist. I just published it. At asknod, we call it transparency. I don’t have any skin in this IMO game. I just buy a lot of them.

fine dining al fresco

I enjoy collaborating with John and Jerrel doing Exposed Vet broadcasts and am hoping to find a permanent berth here for them to crank out a new, improved version of the show-possibly using YouTube™. I’d be able to have those of you who desire to ask a question insert it in to the Blog comments below during a live performance so I/we can answer it in real time. Don’t get me wrong. Radio is a wonderful medium but a picture can be worth a thousand words. I could even share my colostomy bag scar with you all.

We’ll never become influencers and I hate that connotation. Besides. I don’t have blond hair or a 36D chest and my pronouns are all wrong for this project. The last time I put on a bra was a Halloween party in the 80’s. Let’s not go there. This is a quasi-family site.

The show starts, as it always does, at 1900 Hrs on the Eastern seaboard and conversely 1600 Hrs out here in the Pacific time zone. The dial in telephone number to listen only is still

(515) 605-9764

The computer link is here:

Should you desire to ask a question, press one (1) on your telephone dial or computer numerical display to enter the fray. I think I speak for John and Jerrel when I say we look forward to helping you all. As I sometimes say, we’re on a mission from God. I also insist that were the shoe on the other foot, you would be here helping me/us to win our claims.

I think you all will find this show interesting from several different aspects-especially all of you with any sort of MDD such as MST or PTSD. But don’t let that constrain you. There are actually 31 flavors of bent  brain. §4.130 is  a veritable Baskin ‘n Robbins © of descriptions/prescriptions for what ails you.

122cm rocket attack

On another note- and mind you I am not bragging- I received a BVA decision yesterday morning granting my Combat Medic (Iraquistan) a 70% rating for PTSD all the  way back to July of  2015. How could he not win this? Well, you’re dealing with VA raters. How many of them have ever been shot at or  tried to staunch a sucking chest wound?  My boy filed it as a Legacy and carefully kept it alive through the years. Shoo doggies. He even had a crackerjack VA law practice working it for a number of years but for some inexplicable reason nobody there thought to obtain a private IMO.  Say all after Whiskey Tango Foxtrot, over? As we all know, depending on VA to generously construe your level of mental disability  is a fool’s errand. So I cut the Gordian knot, purchased a killer one and sat back for an eternity of waiting. Cool beans. 75 months of retro.

Remember. This isn’t rocket science. It’s a recipe carefully tailored to the individual Veteran. Nothing more. Nothing less. Look at me. I graduated 59th out of a class of 64. If I can learn how to do this, I know you folks can. Nevertheless, VA is constantly trying to add five miles to the tunnel to decrease the win ratio. With that said, and after talking to many fellow attorneys last week, I have been asked to refer Vets who come to me seeking help. If any of you are desperate or can’t get any traction with a good VA representative, email me and I’ll hook you up with some of the best in the business. In addition, I’ve trimmed my caseload by winning a few this year which have been taking up an inordinate amount of my time. I’m now taking on a few new cases. If you feel you’re entitled to SMC at the higher levels, I’d be interested in hearing from you. If your winky doesn’t work anymore because of prostate cancer from AO or the ticker sounds like a Maxwell House® coffee percolator, shoot me a commo. My contact info is in the “About the Author ” widget above.

 It shocks me to discover how few attorneys out there who know how to do this (SMC). I would concede it’s pretty difficult and takes a few years to grasp it but once you do, it seems no more daunting than learning how to ride a bike sans training wheels. Shoot. It only took me five years but then I’ve always been waaaaay behind the learning curve. Well, that’s what my trigonometry teacher always averred.

Onward through the VA fog.


About asknod

VA claims blogger
This entry was posted in Agent Orange, All about Veterans, DBQs, Exposed Veteran Radio Show, Lawyering Up, PTSD, Tips and Tricks, VA Agents, Veterans Law and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.


  1. Gary says:

    I love YouTube with link, subscripts would be nice too for those of us really hard of hearing (100% VA deaf). You, your book and your website greatly helped me start and get down the VA road. I never took my cases to you because I am not a combat Vet and you had plenty. Your website is a gold mine. Recently you put up several redacted IMO – 24K Gold. Tried a little cut and paste with a friendly doctor and bingo! How do you go from close to death, master of your own path through the VA jungle, become publisher of book and website, representative of combat Vets and help so many. I hope you occasionally reflect on that, I do…

  2. Holly says:

    I always enjoy reading your prose. It is entertaining and educational. Thank you.

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