The Freeman's Burden:

To defend the principles of human liberty; to educate; to be vigilant against the ever expanding power of the state.

Thursday, June 23, 2005

Supreme Court Rules American Homes Can Now Be Seized for Private Use

LP Press Release Posted by Hello

(Washington, D.C.) The Supreme Court ruled today that local governments have broad power to confiscate private property in the name of "economic development." They handed down a 5-4 ruling against a group of homeowners in New London, Conn., who claimed the city is trying to illegally force them to sell their property. The city wants to make way for a hotel, an office building and other privately funded facilities. Government agencies including city and county governments have long been allowed to condemn private property so that public buildings, roads and other infrastructure can be built. Called "eminent domain," this practice is constitutional as long as the power is exercised strictly in accordance with the Fifth Amendment's "takings clause." However, the new ruling will allow local governments to claim property for the benefit for private entities, rather than restricting eminent domain to acquiring land for public use. "This ruling sets a frightening precedent that will affect poor and middle class families across the nation." said Michael Dixon, national chairman of the Libertarian Party. "Dazzled by the possibility of increasing tax revenue and employment opportunities, local government officials will now be able to claim entire communities for the benefit of private corporations." While the Libertarian Party supports the right of corporations to do business, "we even more strongly support the constitutional rights of the individual," Dixon declared. "And those constitutional rights are being trampled on by local governments around the country." Because the Supreme Court's decision gives government agencies much broader power to confiscate private property, the Libertarian Party calls on both state legislatures and Congress to stand up for the rights of private landowners. "This country was founded on the principle that people have the right to protect their lives, their lands and their liberty," Dixon said. "It is the sworn duty of elected officials to stand up for the individual rights of their constituents. Now is the time for them to do so."


Anonymous cdrgonzo said...

I found it interesting that the same justices who voted on the same side of states rights in the medical pot case voted against states right to screw over their citizens. I guess even states rights has a limit. I just hate to agree with Rhenquist, Thomas, and O'connor 2 times in a row, and to agree with Scalia at all.

7:22 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This goes back to the corporations' abuse of power issue we argued about some time back. This ruling gives more power to corporations over individuals, with government as an enforcer. Didn't the same thing happen in the 1800's when Central Pacific Railroad sent the sheriffs to evict farmers from land in California's Central Valley? Can you imagine that a local government will ever take land from WalMart or Bank of America so that a small businessman can start a job creating venture? I can't believe you Libertarians still believe government regulation restricts corporate profit.

6:54 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Our family has been in California for well over one hundred years. Our auntie is 102 yrs old and has lived in Riverside all of her life, just like her 6 brothers and sisters (she is the oldest). Her hard working family came from Italy to make a life for themselves; farming orange groves, building highways, opening businesses, working at the courthouse, teaching...the list goes on. Now, through eminent domain, almost all of their property has been taken out from under them. Among other things, they were forced to sell their 40 acre farm for the construction of a septic facility. The facility was shut down three years later, and sold to a private developer. Now their beautiful farm which had been in their family for nearly a century, has condos all over it, and some fat cat is counting the dollar signs. The last of the property is on Van Buren Blvd. (a much used street in Riverside) and has been there ever since the street wasn't much more than orange groves. In fact, when our Grandmother opened her beauty salon on that very street, she was told by many that it would never thrive because "no one ever goes down Van Buren!" Now, the front of this beautiful property, with 4 homes and a beauty Parlor, all built by the hands of our grandfather, will be taken by the city, to expand Van Buren Blvd, and bring it right to our front steps. The giant trees, planted by our grandmother, will not be moved, but chopped down forever. What will there be left to take? The homes that house our grandparents, parents, aunties and ourselves, who all live on this property, which was envisioned to house our families for generations to come? And when we are forced to bow to their demands, (which the Supreme Copurt has decided to make much more likely) and move to new homes, what will keep us safe from the same thing happening again? Will it never again be possible to dream of a home for our family? A home where our children can come to when they are grown and have memories of when they were young? A home we can share with our grandchildren and great granchildren? How can I ever dream of such a thing? All of our family's hard work, and the hard work of our family before us will never be safe from the clutches of eminant domain, or the seizure of our property for private COMMERCIAL use! So, the government can take our property, our HOMES, Our LIVES, so they can build a Walmart? This is like a very, very, VERY bad dream. I never would have thought this country could stoop so low. I now realize why some refer to us as "Capitalist Pigs". The government, so full of greed and glutony, has lost the last bit of integrity I had ever given them credit for. I am truly disgusted and haven't a clue what to do about this mess.

1:32 PM  

Post a Comment

<< Home