Monday, June 27, 2005

Wow! The vitriol on the blogs and on the streets about the Supreme Court decision in the case of Kelo v. New London is absolutely amazing!

The Left is blaming the conservative justices. The Right is blaming the liberal judges.

At issue is the plans of New London, CT to develop an economically depressed part of town to spur investment. Some people sold their property, some held out. When the city foreclosed, the lawsuits began.

Essentially, the city argued that the new development would pay more in property taxes, resulting in more tax revenue, and that greater tax revenue was for the public good, and therefore acceptable under the Fifth Amendment's takings clause: ". . .nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation." Used to be, stuff in the public good meant roads and bridges and stuff. Now it means whoever pays the most taxes is entitled to your property. If Wal-Mart wants to build a superstore where your house is, they can! Your right to be secure in your own home is gone. On the upside, if you'll pay more taxes than your neighbor, you can get their house!

The next day, the city of Freeport, Texas filed papers to get 3 properties to build a marina. The land grab has begun!

While this is quite obviously a pro-business decision, it is also pro-government. This reinforces the liberal belief that government knows what's best for you and me because we're, well, not them. What's surprising is who dissented. So here's a handy little score card for your use:

Justice
For or against Kelo v. New London
Appointing President
William H. Rehnquist
N
Nixon (R)
John Paul Stevens
Y
Ford (R)
Sandra Day O'?Connor
N
Reagan (R)
Antonin Scalia
N
Reagan (R)
Anthony M. Kennedy
Y
Reagan (R)
David Hackett Souter
Y
Bush (R)
Clarence Thomas
N
Bush (R)
Ruth Bader Ginsburg
Y
Clinton (D)
Stephen G. Breyer
Y
Clinton (D)

For the record: 100% of the Democrat judges supported the decision; 57% of the Republicans wereopposedd. So if any liberals want to complain about how the conservatives did this, why did both liberals agree?

What we need to do now is get together, Left and Right, and get our Congress to amend the Constitution to define the public good.

Update: Some time it pays to be a Texan. Since the Supreme Court ruling left a door open for local and state laws to restrict the definition of eminent domain, some folks are calling on Governor Rick "Ridin' Dubya's Coattails" Perry to add the condemnation issue to the upcoming special session. They would have to amend the Texas Constitution, but we do that in every election. Perry, however, is saying (through his spokesflunky) that he would consider adding the issue, if the school finance problems were resolved.

C'mon, Kinky! Take a stand on this!

Update 2 (6/28/05): Logan Clements began the necessary paperwork to seize the home of Supreme Court Justice David Souter and build a hotel.

The proposed development, called "The Lost Liberty Hotel" will feature the "Just Desserts Café" and include a museum, open to the public, featuring a permanent exhibit on the loss of freedom in America. Instead of a Gideon's Bible each guest will receive a free copy of Ayn Rand's novel "Atlas Shrugged."

I don't know about you, but I'm already saving money for a night's stay at "the Lost Liberty Hotel" in Weare, New Hampshire.

We need more entrepreneurs to start buying the homes of Justices Stevens, Kennedy, Ginsberg, and Breyer.

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