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The Indefinite Article.

Thursday, June 23, 2005

Justices, 5-4, Back Seizure of Property for Development

This is an astonishing decision to me. I think I need to read more about it.
Justices, 5-4, Back Seizure of Property for Development - New York Times


  • Yes. This decision sends a chill up my spine.

    O'Connor nails it

    "Any property may now be taken for the benefit of another private property, but the fallout from this decision will not be random," she wrote. "The beneficiaries are likely to be those citizens with disproportionate influence and power in the political process, including large corporations and development firms.

    By Blogger pablo, at 4:10 PM  

  • After reading a bit, I can almost see the argument that the constitution does not forbid what the Connecticut town was doing. Basically the argument goes something like this: the constitution does limit this taking on the part of the federal government but does not keep states (and by extension cities) from doing it. From a strictly constitutional standpoint this may make sense, as IANAL.

    However, taken broadly, how is this different from civil forfeiture law, which has been used by police forces to confiscate property to sell at auction for revenue to support force salaries and equipment purchases? Does a check for the "fair market value" of a home really the equivalent of a home to an 89 year old?

    Businessman: We would like to put our corporate headquarters right here.
    Politician: Sorry, but voters live there. I can't help you by giving them the boot.
    Businessman: Here's a check to help you stay elected.
    Politician: A corporate headquarters sure would look high-dollar. Let's make an community economic plan!

    Politician thinking: No voters--no problem.
    Businessman thinking: Next year I'll get a tax abatement to keep me from abandoning the town.

    By Blogger Adolph, at 7:00 PM  

  • In a way it is ironic that the liberal justices supported this and the conservatives dissented. Typically people think of conservatives as being on the side of big business and liberals being on the side of the "little guy." Not this time.

    By Blogger Ethan, at 7:55 AM  

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