Bayou Calvinist

A Somewhat Eclectic Discussion by a Law Student Concerning All of Today's Major Topics, as well as, a Few Not So Major Topics

Friday, June 24, 2005

"Public Use" = "Private Privlige"

As I'm sure all who actually care about such things are already well aware, the U.S. Supreme Court released its decision in Kelo v. the City of New London, Connecticut yesterday and this has led to mostly uninterested responses by the majority of society. While in many ways the case only Constitutionalized what has already been occurring for some time now, it is still a horrendous step backwards for the natural right of private property. Essentially any municipality may now force private citizens to sell their property via eminent domain, so that their property may in turn be given over to new private owners whom the city feels will better benefit the community. Now if that is not scary enough, when looked at in actual practice the policy implications, I would argue, are even worse. What this new found power will be used for is not uncertain. It will undoubtedly be used by City Councils around America to make certain that a new Walmart or Bass Pro or [insert another finance producing corporate giant] will come to their town, now with the additional benefit of being able to choose their location with impunity. Also, this power will undoubtedly come down hardest on the weakest and poorest of a town's citizenry. Of course, I personally also see this as yet another sign of the slow roll towards socialism in America (not to mention the near completed journey of an unchecked judiciary). ---My feelings on socialism would probably be best portrayed by an as of yet unmade bumper sticker that goes a little something like this: Socialism-the philosophy that allows you to feel good about yourself while selling your progeny down the river.--- So, how does one blunt this new power? Well as the majority itself suggests, the best and possibly only way is for each state to pass it's own laws limiting such power. Considering most Louisiana politicians have the backbone of a just boiled softshell crawfish (for all non-biologists crawfish are invertebrates) when it comes to standing up to powerful interests, I don't hold much hope for my home state. Perhaps amongst other more sophisticated locales such laws will save the day. One idea that sorta just popped off the top of my head is some type of 14th Amendment due process claim on the inequality of this new confiscatory power's effect. Anyone who has a higher gpa than I (so basically anyone) feel free to drop some suggestions.

Anyone interested the case may find it in its entirety by copying and pasting the following:
http://a257.g.akamaitech.net/7/257/2422/23jun20051201/
www.supremecourtus.gov/opinions/04pdf/04-108.pdf

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