Public policy and Politics
Comments and commentary posted irregularly by Victor Yannacone on events and topics in the news of interest to voters, public employees, and the elected representatives who serve them.
Although much of what Yannacone has written on public policy is privileged and confidential for “eyes only” of clients and government officials, publicly accessible papers will appear here.
Yannacone has been championing the cause of Vietnam combat veterans since he filed the Agent Orange litigation in 1979 and started the fight for adequate and necessary medical care and treatment for combat veterans from the VA. His untiring efforts eventually led Congress to recognize that our Vietnam veterans were no less the best and the bravest that those veterans from what we are calling “The Greatest Generation” who fought in World War II and the Korean “Police Action.”
Yannacone is continuing to advocate on behalf of combat veterans from the wars in the Middle East and Afghanistan against a still uncaring and insensitive Veterans Administration bureaucracy.
With his remarkable understanding of complex scientific issues, Yannacone speaks out for rational science as the basis for public policy to protect the Environment and maintain the American Free Enterprise system in Courts of Law and the Court of Public Opinion. He is not afraid to challenge even widely held generally accepted popular misconceptions such as the reliability of numeric models of “global” climate and demand that “scientific” opinions come from rigorous application of the scientific method before they become the basis of legislation and regulation.
In the 1960s Yannacone’s efforts to protect prime soils for agriculture on Long Island led to the idea for residential condominium ownership of working farms to protect farming and ranching as a way of life even in urbanized America. He helped develop master plans for protection of the Hanalei Valley in Kauai and the Pine Barrens of Medford Township in central New Jersey.
He restored the memory and recovered many of the writings of Charles Valentine Riley an internationally famous entomologist, naturalist and artist; a correspondent of Charles Darwin; creator of the National Insect Collection at the Smithsonian Institution; savior of the French wine industry from the Phylloxera; founder of biological control with introduction of the Videlia (Ladybug) beetle which saved the California citrus industry; but who had been “stalinized” out of history by his successor at the United States Department of Agriculture after his untimely tragic death in a freak bicycle accident in downtown Washington DC in 1895.
Yannacone is never afraid to speak truth to power, but he is always ready to help elected officials, government regulators, and business leaders with fair and practical solutions for complex problems. Chemical weapons in Syria and the electric power crisis on Long Island in New York are recent examples.