[Homestead] An article cheering the Supremes
Clansgian at wmconnect.com
Clansgian at wmconnect.com
Sun Jul 3 17:34:11 EDT 2005
>And they have done so often with voter agreement.
All the more reason why the Kelo decision is so horrendously bad.
Constitutional guarantees were established for the very purpose of not letting those
rights be determined by mob rule. In another recent court decision based on
finding that two Kentucky counties were illegally promoting a religion, given to
local option and local determination, those counties would be a sort of
Christian Taliban if it were not for constitutional restraints. The locals would
gladly vote fundamentalist Christianity as the recognized only county religion
and base all their laws upon it.
One of the things the constitution does is keep local governments from voting
away your rights, at least until Kelo, that is. What happens when all the
property being condemned for economic reasons just happens to be owned by
Hispanics or just happens to be owned by Catholics or some such? Under Kelo the
definition of what is an economic plan is entirely up to the local government.
>I see it as a clarification and a SCOTUS directive that municipal
>authorities must have a well-reasoned plan. Heretofore, cities have taken
> I quoted the passage earlier that persuades me differently.
I read that passage too and at first I was mollified. But that passage is a
description of the case before the court, not part of the criteria the court
set for taking property. O'Connor in the minority opinion said:
" In moving away from our decisions sanctioning the condemnation of harmful
property use, the Court today significantly expands the meaning of public use.
It holds that the sovereign may take private property currently put to
ordinary private use, and give it over for new, ordinary private use, so long as the
new use is predicted to generate some secondary benefit for the public--such
as increased tax revenue, more jobs, maybe even aesthetic pleasure. But nearly
any lawful use of real private property can be said to generate some
incidental benefit to the public. Thus, if predicted (or even guaranteed) positive
side-effects are enough to render transfer from one private party to another
constitutional, then the words "for public use" do not realistically exclude any
takings, and thus do not exert any constraint on the eminent domain power."
Not especially the wording: "... do not realistically exclude any takings.."
Most legal commentators in the wake of Kelo have opined that New London's
development plan is incidental since the same way that 'public use' is being left
up to local interpretation, so is the concept of 'comprehensive plan'. If a
local government wants to condemn your house so that a contractor can build a
bigger house just on your lot, the Kelo decision covers that.
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