June 23, 2005
The Supreme Court on Thursday ruled that local governments may seize people's homes and businesses - even against their will - for private economic development.
It was a decision fraught with huge implications for a country with many areas, particularly the rapidly growing urban and suburban areas, facing countervailing pressures of development and property ownership rights.
The 5-4 ruling represented a defeat for some Connecticut residents whose homes are slated for destruction to make room for an office complex. They argued that cities have no right to take their land except for projects with a clear public use, such as roads or schools, or to revitalize blighted areas.
As a result, cities now have wide power to bulldoze residences for projects such as shopping malls and hotel complexes in order to generate tax revenue.
Are you kidding me? Are you fucking kidding me?! Is there any locale in the entire US where a county wouldn't receive more revenue from a shopping center or store than from property taxes? I'll probably need to move there if I want to keep my house.
Fuck these money-grubbing elected officials who sanction activity such as this, and fuck everyone who says "It's okay". It's NOT okay.
Here are the SCOTUS members voting for the majority decision:
John Paul Stevens
Justice Anthony Kennedy
David H. Souter
Ruth Bader Ginsburg
Stephen G. Breyer
Now tell me again why the Senate battle for judicial confirmations isn't important. This country needs a different type of judge on the bench to revisit and overturn this decision. And it will be appealed again once the makeup of SCOTUS changes.
By the way, will someone bitchslap George Bush the elder for putting David Souter on the bench? Please?
Update: Will Collier has more. Excerpt:
This is a dreadful decision. If politicians have the right to take your private property and give it to somebody else just because the other guy claims that he can generate more taxes from it, then property rights have ceased to exist in the US.
The localities are still required to pay "a just price" when one of these takings occurs, but the price even a willing seller would be able to get from his property just took a huge hit. All a developer has to do now is make a lowball offer and threaten to involve a bought-and-paid-for politician to take the property away if the owner doesn't acquiesce.
Update: Michelle Malkin has a roundup of related links.
Update: I'll post more links as soon as I have time, but I believe that Blogs of War has it exactly right:
Have a home on nice corner lot? Better hope that a fast food chain doesn't take an interest in it. Live near an airport? Holiday Inn would love to build a high-rise hotel where your home now stands. Corrupt, cheaply bought, local officials now hold your family's future in their hands.
This is the breeding ground of a revolution
: Arguing with Signposts has a rather large collection of related links.
Acidman makes the best assessment of the Kelo decision:
I call bullshit on the Supreme Court.
Posted by: LCVRWC at June 23, 2005 03:11 PM (L3qPK)
Posted by: Harvey at June 23, 2005 03:53 PM (ubhj8)
Posted by: Lycan at June 23, 2005 04:28 PM (dHD6C)
Posted by: physics geek at June 23, 2005 04:34 PM (Xvrs7)
Posted by: jimmyb at June 24, 2005 01:56 PM (zIl1J)
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