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Eminent domain

Kandahar

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I've been looking to discuss Kelo v. New London for quite some time now, but I seem to be unable to find ANYONE, liberal or conservative, who thinks this case was decided correctly. Where in the Constitution could these five judges POSSIBLY find the right for the government to steal private property? I can find several parts that PROHIBIT such action, but nothing that could possibly be construed to allow this.

Does anyone agree with this decision? If so, why?

Personally I hope the Free Staters get their way, and evoke eminent domain laws to confiscate David Souter's house and make their museum.
 

Connecticutter

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Kandahar said:
I've been looking to discuss Kelo v. New London for quite some time now, but I seem to be unable to find ANYONE, liberal or conservative, who thinks this case was decided correctly. Where in the Constitution could these five judges POSSIBLY find the right for the government to steal private property? I can find several parts that PROHIBIT such action, but nothing that could possibly be construed to allow this.

Does anyone agree with this decision? If so, why?
I also disagree with the decision - so I can't actually debate against you. I just want to say that if such a large percentage of people think that this is wrong, why don't we ammend the constitution with a clause that is even stricter than the 5th ammendment? It would have to be worded in such a way that it can't be twisted by public officials and judges.

People are talking about an ammendment to ban Gay Marriage, but I would think a far larger percentage of people would support an ammendment to outlaw these blatant transfers of property from one group to another. Also, such an ammendment would be more compatible with our constitutional system.

Kandahar said:
Personally I hope the Free Staters get their way, and evoke eminent domain laws to confiscate David Souter's house and make their museum.
haha - I agree. Even though I doubt they will actaully go through with it, the proposal can definately be used to spread more awareness about the case.
 

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Kandahar said:
I've been looking to discuss Kelo v. New London for quite some time now, but I seem to be unable to find ANYONE, liberal or conservative, who thinks this case was decided correctly. Where in the Constitution could these five judges POSSIBLY find the right for the government to steal private property? I can find several parts that PROHIBIT such action, but nothing that could possibly be construed to allow this.

Does anyone agree with this decision? If so, why?

Personally I hope the Free Staters get their way, and evoke eminent domain laws to confiscate David Souter's house and make their museum.
It is a load of crap, it's unconstitutional, it hurts individualism, and is basically in every sense morally wrong.

PS: I REALLY hope that the judge gets his house lost, which he must unless he only applies the laws under "special curcumstances".
 

Old and wise

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Kandahar said:
I've been looking to discuss Kelo v. New London for quite some time now, but I seem to be unable to find ANYONE, liberal or conservative, who thinks this case was decided correctly. Where in the Constitution could these five judges POSSIBLY find the right for the government to steal private property? I can find several parts that PROHIBIT such action, but nothing that could possibly be construed to allow this.

Does anyone agree with this decision? If so, why?

Personally I hope the Free Staters get their way, and evoke eminent domain laws to confiscate David Souter's house and make their museum.
The State of New Hampshire already has proposed legislation to eliminate the possiblity of eminent domain being used for anything other than government purposes.
 

GoldPheonix

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Old and wise said:
The State of New Hampshire already has proposed legislation to eliminate the possiblity of eminent domain being used for anything other than government purposes.
Because the government is much less corrupt than a company?
 

Connecticutter

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GoldPheonix said:
Because the government is much less corrupt than a company?
Well, at least then a company won't be able to pay off (through tax dollars) the goverment for eminent domain power. Of course, maybe we should just end eminent domain all together. Would that cause problems when it comes to building roads and such?
 

GoldPheonix

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Connecticutter said:
Well, at least then a company won't be able to pay off (through tax dollars) the goverment for eminent domain power. Of course, maybe we should just end eminent domain all together. Would that cause problems when it comes to building roads and such?
Well, just think about it, what right does the government have to take away an individuals property under any circumstance?
 

Connecticutter

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GoldPheonix said:
Well, just think about it, what right does the government have to take away an individuals property under any circumstance?
I don't think they do. I'm just trying to play devils advocate here. A supporter of Eminent Domain would bring up the case where one stubborn land-owner refuses to sell and ruins a large project for everyone.

The fact that there is no one on the boards supporting the Kelo Decision so far says something.
 

KurtFF8

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I agree, this descision is crazy
 

Gandhi>Bush

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Connecticutter said:
I don't think they do. I'm just trying to play devils advocate here. A supporter of Eminent Domain would bring up the case where one stubborn land-owner refuses to sell and ruins a large project for everyone.

The fact that there is no one on the boards supporting the Kelo Decision so far says something.
Eminent Domain was once used in order to make highways, parks, etc. The would take your PRIVATE PROPERTY and after just compensation for you make it PUBLIC PROPERTY. The difference in these new cases is that the supreme court ruled that it is constitutional to take PRIVATE PROPERTY from one entity and make it another entity's PRIVATE PROPERTY if, of course, it is believed to help the community by doing so. For instance, Bill Gates couldn't just buy up an urban slum and put a Mansion there, but if he intended to make a big factory, which would create jobs and stimulate the economy in the area, chances are, he'd get away with it.

Now that we are all a little more informed about the applications of Eminent Domain, I think we can all have a more intelligent discussion. Remember, as long as THE GOVERNMENT thinks it is in the best interest for the community/city/whatever they can take it, not because they feel like it.
 

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Gandhi>Bush said:
Now that we are all a little more informed about the applications of Eminent Domain, I think we can all have a more intelligent discussion. Remember, as long as THE GOVERNMENT thinks it is in the best interest for the community/city/whatever they can take it, not because they feel like it.
But here's the problem...

EVERY industry will ultimately bring in more cash than a residential community...Thus becomes the question for City Councils down the road..."Why have residential communities at all when we can have a town of industries and move the people to the suburbs?"

That will increase the suburban areas which will...that's right...increase taxes for highway and traffic construction in THOSE areas...

So the City Councils in the suburbs bring in industries and use eminent domain to push out these new residents...which...

a) make them move again...

b) makes them move further from the original town, leaving an absence of workers so those industries collapse...They leave...and what industy would want to replace them?...None...No workers...so it becomes residential again...right back where they started...and those workers will now go to the suburban industries to work...until the residential community becomes so large that the City Council...Yup...Takes their property, due to eminent domain, and brings in industries again..

As so forth...and so on...
 

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I agree with the decision in this case, but only because the town needed the business, and the income that will bring. No one seems to have a problem when it's a town hall, school, or police station that is built, but now everyone is in a panic because it's a business. The town was bankrupt, they desperately needed funds, these funds are used to provide the town with police protection, firemen, sewer, water, etc. I can't see allowing a few stubborn folks to stand in the way of the progress of an entire town. I do worry that it will be abused, but in this particular instance, it was they right thing to do IMO.
 

Kandahar

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Deegan said:
I agree with the decision in this case, but only because the town needed the business, and the income that will bring. No one seems to have a problem when it's a town hall, school, or police station that is built, but now everyone is in a panic because it's a business. The town was bankrupt, they desperately needed funds, these funds are used to provide the town with police protection, firemen, sewer, water, etc. I can't see allowing a few stubborn folks to stand in the way of the progress of an entire town. I do worry that it will be abused, but in this particular instance, it was they right thing to do IMO.
Actually, in the case of Kelo v. New London, there was no business entity involved. The city took property away from one resident, using eminent domain, and gave it to another (wealthier) resident. The justification was that the new resident would build a bigger home on the property and thus increase property taxes for the city.
 

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Kandahar said:
Actually, in the case of Kelo v. New London, there was no business entity involved. The city took property away from one resident, using eminent domain, and gave it to another (wealthier) resident. The justification was that the new resident would build a bigger home on the property and thus increase property taxes for the city.
Now I'm really confused, this is the case I am referring to, I don't know what case you're talking about?:confused:

http://a257.g.akamaitech.net/7/257/....supremecourtus.gov/opinions/04pdf/04-108.pdf
 
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Gandhi>Bush

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cnredd said:
But here's the problem...

EVERY industry will ultimately bring in more cash than a residential community...Thus becomes the question for City Councils down the road..."Why have residential communities at all when we can have a town of industries and move the people to the suburbs?"

That will increase the suburban areas which will...that's right...increase taxes for highway and traffic construction in THOSE areas...

So the City Councils in the suburbs bring in industries and use eminent domain to push out these new residents...which...

a) make them move again...

b) makes them move further from the original town, leaving an absence of workers so those industries collapse...They leave...and what industy would want to replace them?...None...No workers...so it becomes residential again...right back where they started...and those workers will now go to the suburban industries to work...until the residential community becomes so large that the City Council...Yup...Takes their property, due to eminent domain, and brings in industries again..

As so forth...and so on...
That's quite a hyperbole don't you think?
 

Kandahar

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Deegan said:
Now I'm really confused, this is the case I am referring to, I don't know what case you're talking about?:confused:

http://a257.g.akamaitech.net/7/257/....supremecourtus.gov/opinions/04pdf/04-108.pdf
I don't see any mention that the property in question was being taken for the purposes of the business, but I didn't read through the entire file.

My understanding is that New London had been committed to attracting businesses like Pfizer by creating more upper-class homes in the immediate surrounding area. To that effect, the city confiscated Ms. Kelo's property using eminent domain and gave it to another resident who would generate more property taxes for the city. In Susette Kelo's words, "If the government was taking our property for a road or firehouse, I would be prepared to sell without a fight. But the government should not be able to force me to sell my home so someone else can enjoy my view."

Regardless, I think that confiscating property for ANY private purpose (whether business or residential) is an abuse of government power. If the wealthy are allowed to simply take property away from the poor and middle-class, with the justification that they'll generate more property taxes, we really just have a government for sale to the highest bidder.
 

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Kandahar said:
I don't see any mention that the property in question was being taken for the purposes of the business, but I didn't read through the entire file.

My understanding is that New London had been committed to attracting businesses like Pfizer by creating more upper-class homes in the immediate surrounding area. To that effect, the city confiscated Ms. Kelo's property using eminent domain and gave it to another resident who would generate more property taxes for the city. In Susette Kelo's words, "If the government was taking our property for a road or firehouse, I would be prepared to sell without a fight. But the government should not be able to force me to sell my home so someone else can enjoy my view."

Regardless, I think that confiscating property for ANY private purpose (whether business or residential) is an abuse of government power. If the wealthy are allowed to simply take property away from the poor and middle-class, with the justification that they'll generate more property taxes, we really just have a government for sale to the highest bidder.
The town had been designated a "distressed municipality" and in 1998, the towns unemployment rate doubled that of the entire state. This town had never seen such distress since the 1920's, and really needed this new business, more then these people needed to stay in their homes. The court chose to take the interest of the entire town in to consideration, and I strongly believe they made the right decision. This should always be determined on a case by case issue, and should always have the same sort of justification as this one did. I do not agree with all government seizures, as in the case of Arrlington TX, where they are forcing people from their homes to build the new Cowboys football stadium. The town does not need this stadium, and I believe those people are being severally wronged.
 

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Deegan said:
The town had been designated a "distressed municipality" and in 1998, the towns unemployment rate doubled that of the entire state. This town had never seen such distress since the 1920's, and really needed this new business, more then these people needed to stay in their homes. The court chose to take the interest of the entire town in to consideration, and I strongly believe they made the right decision. This should always be determined on a case by case issue, and should always have the same sort of justification as this one did. I do not agree with all government seizures, as in the case of Arrlington TX, where they are forcing people from their homes to build the new Cowboys football stadium. The town does not need this stadium, and I believe those people are being severally wronged.
What the town needs and does not need is purely subjective. This is true even for legitimate public use, but taking property away from one private individual and giving it to another private individual clearly goes against the notion of property rights. If towns are allowed to confiscate property from private citizens for no reason other than the city council (or SCOTUS) decides they "need" the private business, we're one large step closer to a centrally-planned socialist economy.
 

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Kandahar said:
What the town needs and does not need is purely subjective. This is true even for legitimate public use, but taking property away from one private individual and giving it to another private individual clearly goes against the notion of property rights. If towns are allowed to confiscate property from private citizens for no reason other than the city council (or SCOTUS) decides they "need" the private business, we're one large step closer to a centrally-planned socialist economy.

That just does not make sense, you would be o.k if it was a school, but not a business, that sort of thinking is backwards. If a school is important enough to take a home, why not a business that may afford the families there to send their child to college one day? How bout a road, if the town is dead, then it's really a road to nowhere, same with the school, if you can't pay the teacher, why have an empty building? The figures are there, if you will investigate further, it may just change your mind.
 

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Deegan said:
That just does not make sense, you would be o.k if it was a school, but not a business, that sort of thinking is backwards.
I would be hesitant (at best) to allow confiscating private property for a school. I am absolutely against confiscating it for private use. Eminent domain is only legal for "public use," and increasing the tax base of the community doesn't cut it.

Deegan said:
If a school is important enough to take a home, why not a business that may afford the families there to send their child to college one day?
Because the business is privately owned, and the school isn't. Why should the government allow one individual to bully another individual into selling his property?

Deegan said:
How bout a road, if the town is dead, then it's really a road to nowhere, same with the school, if you can't pay the teacher, why have an empty building?
Being 100% against the use of eminent domain for private use does not mean that I'm 100% in favor of it for public use. If the road or school aren't going to have public use, then it shouldn't be allowed.

Deegan said:
The figures are there, if you will investigate further, it may just change your mind.
What figures are you talking about? I'm talking about the concepts of property rights, and respecting what the Constitution actually says.
 

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I can't really change your mind, this is obvious to me, but if you will read the link I have given you, you will see that this was the correct ruling. The town was bankrupt, unemployment was double that of the entire state, and even a federal museum had to close, which cost some 1,500 jobs for this town. The only solution was to bring in private business, and while it's sad that some of these folks lost their home, it just couldn't be avoided. There are plenty of cases to get angry about, this is just not one of those.
 

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Deegan said:
I can't really change your mind, this is obvious to me, but if you will read the link I have given you, you will see that this was the correct ruling. The town was bankrupt, unemployment was double that of the entire state, and even a federal museum had to close, which cost some 1,500 jobs for this town.
Well tough ****. That doesn't give them the right to confiscate private property. Suppose someone held you at gunpoint and forced you to sell them your car for market value, because "they needed it." Would you be OK with that?

Deegan said:
The only solution was to bring in private business, and while it's sad that some of these folks lost their home, it just couldn't be avoided. There are plenty of cases to get angry about, this is just not one of those.
This is a case to get angry about, because it's a perfect example of the abuse of government power to deny citizens their property rights, and the abuse of government power by interpreting the constitution in such a way to mean exactly the opposite of what it says. "Public use" is NOT private use.

If the city wanted to bring in private business, they could eliminate most local taxes on businesses, or eliminate local business regulations, or reduce the influence of unions through the political progress, or hundreds of other ways that don't involve forcibly taking private property.
 

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Kandahar said:
Well tough ****. That doesn't give them the right to confiscate private property. Suppose someone held you at gunpoint and forced you to sell them your car for market value, because "they needed it." Would you be OK with that?
You normally get 4x what your property is worth.
 

Kandahar

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Gandhi>Bush said:
You normally get 4x what your property is worth.
Most cities using eminent domain have the property appraised and give you that amount, and not a dime more. Moving expenses and legal fees come out of your own pocket.


But regardless, the amount of money you receive is not the issue here.
 

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Kandahar said:
Most cities using eminent domain have the property appraised and give you that amount, and not a dime more. Moving expenses and legal fees come out of your own pocket.
We're going over this case in Ethics Bowl. We've gone through what happened in Arlington about the football stadium there, as well as the the New London case. 4x the appraised amount is what the supreme court has decided to be "just compensation".

But regardless, the amount of money you receive is not the issue here.
Agreed.
 
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