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Politech is the oldest Internet resource devoted to politics and technology. Launched in 1994 by Declan McCullagh, the mailing list has chronicled the growing intersection of law, culture, technology, and politics. Since 2000, so has the Politech web site.

One take on the Supreme Court's decision in Kelo property-confiscation case

Catching up on some news from last week. Here's the text of the Kelo 

Randy Barnett's take on the sad majority opinion:

And this quote from Justice Thomas:
"Something has gone seriously awry with this Court’'s interpretation of 
the Constitution."

More analysis than you ever wanted:

And the swift fallout as cities move toward land grabs:


-------- Original Message --------
Subject: Time$cam, Eminent Domain Abuse & The Kelo Decision**
Date: Mon, 27 Jun 2005 02:23:54 +0000
From: Richard Cooper <lpnymedia@hotmail.com>
To: declan@well.com

How can anyone confuse the word "use" with the words "purpose" and
"benefit"?  The Constitution remains in exile under the assault of those 
would give a carte blanche to government.  The American Revolution was
fought to protect individual liberty and private property from the
privileges granted the politically-connected.  The Supreme Court's decision
threatens the property owners, taxpayers, and tenants of the entire 
Condemning private property and transferring it to private developers is 
just unconstitutional, it is morally wrong.

Libertarians like myself consider this to be legalized theft.  As the 
chair of the Libertarian Party of New York (2000-02), I combatted the NY
TIMES seizure of property for its new headquarters, the condemnation of 
Island's own St. Luke's Pentecostal Church on behalf of developers and the
threatened seizure of an entire neighborhood in New Rochelle to become an
Ikea furniture store. I called the NY TIMES scheme "Time$cam."  Today their
partner, Brucer Ratner, wants to wipe out a Brooklyn neighborhood to bring
in the Nets basketball team as well as office and luxury residential

Don't think you are safe it you don't live in a "blighted" area. Any
government can designate any area as "blighted." Don't think you are 
safe it
you are a tenant.  Owners are required to get compensation.  Tenants 
  Taxpayers will foot the bill for eminent domain always.

President Bush is amongst those who benefitted from eminent domain abuse
when the Texas Rangers went to the city of Arlington to condemn land for a
new stadium.  They didn't use all of it and sold it at a nice profit.
Corporate sports welfare is a common "public purpose" of eminent domain

Americans  must demand that their federal and state legislators rectify 
error. To serve justice, to defend the Constitution and to protect
themselves, Americans should vote for candidates who oppose eminent domain
abuse.  Many Democrats and Republicans will, but their parties embrace the
urban renewal and economic development imperatives behind eminent domain
abuse.  Only Libertarians can be counted on to fight legalized theft, in
whatever form, all the time.

Richard A. Cooper, former Chair Libertarian Party of New York (2000-02)
former Chair, Libertarian party of Nassau County

Home address:
Westbury, NY 11590


Posted by Declan McCullagh on Jun 27, 2005 in category economics

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