Things I wanted to say: on eminent domain

I was in Brazil when President Bush issued his “Executive Order: Protecting the Property Rights of the American People”.

As this article point out,
Bush executive order limits property seizure

White House spokeswoman Dana Perino said the executive order put the federal government on record opposing eminent domain for merely economic development purposes.

“The president is a strong supporter of private property rights,” she said.

Since the Kelo decision, an avalanche of property confiscations have followed

It made a good difference in the necessary process of putting a bridle on eminent domain’s runaway coach, but we still have work to do in our state legislatures. We can talk about freedom all we want, but if we sit idly by and do nothing while our basic rights are undermined, the talk and the celebration mean little. We have responsibilities with our rights and that includes standing up for them and preserving them against all tyrants. Even those found in our own backyards. I don’t see many people speaking up in appreciation for what President Bush accomplished in this important issue. If your own home isn’t safe…. your power to have and exercise your freedoms is demolished. That is why it was of such importance in English common law. “A man’s home is his castle” is more than a saying, it is a concept. President Bush has given back some scaffolding by which we may build up our property rights. Let’s complete the work and strengthen the edifice of our basic freedoms that we like to talk so much about.

There’s still work to do.

It was the one-year anniversary of the controversial Supreme Court decision in a case involving New London, Conn., homeowners.

The majority opinion from the divided court limited homeowners rights, by saying that local governments could take private property for purely economic development-related projects because the motive was bringing more jobs and tax revenue to the city.

But the court also noted that states are free to pass additional protections if they see fit, and many have done so, prohibiting so-called takings for shopping malls or other private projects.

Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas, welcomed Bush’s executive order. But since the federal government has only a limited role in these types of projects, he said Congress must do more. Cornyn has introduced legislation that would also bar federal funding for any state or local projects in which the land was obtained through eminent domain. ~ Associated Press

======= other things I’ve written on the topic====

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