The American Spectator: Kiss Your House Goodbye
As much as I shouldn't be surprised by the decision of the Supremes, I was! Disgusted is more like it because this will now open the flood gates for cities to have a field day on private property. I've seen it happen too often. There's been 2 major incidences in the Twin Cities where tax revenue drove the takings of private property for private use. I saw this occur (although for public use) around 10 yrs ago with a local family who owned quite a few acres on Lake Minnetonka. The land had been in their family for 100 years, the family residence and business were on the property. It started out with Verne Gagne "donating" his adjacent land to the county but the land didn't have lake access. The county decided they wanted to create a Regional Park but they would need lake access. Hence the takings of the other family's property. This was in litigation for almost 10 years and the family of course lost. The County boasted there would be at least 400,000 park visitors per year - that of course was a crock. I would be surprised if there are even 100,000 visitors per year there. One thing I neglected to mention is there are 5 other Regional Parks around the Twin Cities along with a multitude of State and local parks. The reason I bring this up in conjunction with the decision yesterday?
From the Spectator:
In his majority opinion Justice Stevens wrote, "Because [New London Development Corporation's] plan unquestionably serves a public purpose, the takings challenged here satisfy the Fifth Amendment....Promoting economic development is a traditional and long accepted governmental function, and there is no principled way of distinguishing it from the other public purposes the Court has recognized."
Socialists believe the government knows best and the activist left side of the court demonstrated this yesterday. So, just like what the county did to create an unneeded regional park the Supremes have stamped their approval on local government entities to do what they want with any private property.
I was talking with my neighbor last night, we are on opposite sides of the political fence. He hates Bush, Rice and Thomas. His automatic response with any issue or problem is it's Bush's fault. I told him about the Supremes decision and asked him just who he thought had voted for the decision. Of course his response was Thomas, Scalia and Renquist! When I told him he would be wrong, he didn't believe me. His comment was this was just the type of decision Thomas would make. A few weeks ago his wife and I went out to lunch and got to talking about Condoleeza Rice. I was just commenting on how petite Rice was, and the wife made a negative comment about Rice. I looked at her and said, ignoring politics she had to admit what an accomplished person Condi was - you know achieving a Doctorate in her low 20's, concert pianist and all of this coming out of Birmingham at a time when Civil Rights was an explosive situation. The wife did a grimace and finally in a disparaging way said yes that may be true. BTW - my neighbors are Black. They are in their late 60's. They always say they were Republicans at the time of Reagan (they lived in California up until last year). Do I believe this, no. It may be they voted for Reagan but I even find that difficult to believe. The only possible conservative opinion they hold is they are anti-abortion. That's it. All politics aside, my neighbors are enjoyable and nice people. I do enjoy their company but I never bring up politics around them. Usually, the husband brings the topic up. In fact, last night after he got smacked down about the Supremes he did the typical Democrat thing, changed the subject and said well look at the problem Bush has now with that "Memo". I told him this was not conclusive and there were questions about the Memo. Of course this had no effect. Finally, I told him there was a Black Helicopter flying behind him. lol. I said from now on whenever I see him I'm just going to say hello by saying - woop woop woop!
All of this is a long way around to say, this is why judges are so important. Do I trust local government to do the "right thing" when it comes to emminent domain. Not on your life or my life for that matter. Do I trust the Democrats to select judges who would follow the Constitution - nope.