Bush Limits Federal Property Siezures

Have to like this Bush policy (I wonder what kind of spam and search terms will be involved with that phrase :))

President Bush ordered Friday that federal agencies cannot seize private property except for public projects such as hospitals or roads. The move occurred on the one-year anniversary of a controversial Supreme Court decision that gave local governments broad power to bulldoze people's homes for commercial development.

Interestingly, the article actually is not a standard liberal hit job on something President Bush has done. Matter of fact, it really lays out the facts nicely

Many conservatives — particularly in the West — see the decision as a dangerous interpretation of the "takings clause" in the Constitution's Fifth Amendment, which allows the government to seize property for public use with just compensation. They have argued such takings are an unjustified governmental abuse of individual rights.

Cities, though, backed by some liberals, see the takings power as an important tool for urban renewal projects crucial to revitalizing cities.

Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas, welcomed Bush's executive order. But since the federal government has only a limited role in such 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.

That second paragraph usually wouldn't make it into any AP article. Funny how liberal urban renewal projects end up giving the land to developers to build malls and high price homes, eh?

Update: Mr. Peabody (where's Sherman? :)), posting a diary at the Daily Kosbat, actually takes on this issue, with some surprising results. Among the netroots (won't use the insulting term, since I am pretty much in agreement with Mr. Peabody) folks, there seems to be a 70%-30% split in favor of opposing Emminent Domain except for special circumstances.

Many Americans recoil almost reflexively against eminent domain. The prospect of a resident losing his or her house obviously "hits home" with many citizens, and should be allowed only in the rarest instances. In his June 1 diary on the issue, maxlongstreet concludes that progressives should never support the use of eminent domain, but should "fight it everywhere and anywhere." Because eminent domain is unpopular, he contends, progressives should pounce on this issue.

Like max, I live in New Jersey, where "pay-to-play" is rampant: developers contribute to political campaigns, and politicians in turn do the bidding of developers. There has been ample abuse of eminent domain here in the Garden State, as local governments have condemned supposedly "blighted" properties, forced residents and business owners to sell, and enabled developers to reap enormous profits by building luxury condos or high-rise office buildings on the site. Currently, the New Jersey legislature is currently considering limiting the use of eminent domain.

Emminent Domain has its place. Take a horrible, run down, decrepit, crime ridden area and turn it into a park, or a better housing area. That's a good use. Taking peoples homes to build a bridge over the tail end of the Manasquan River (in NJ, near where I grew up and my folks live) because a couple of jackoffs have their big boats back that way and do not want to wait for the current bridge to go up every hour is bad (true story.)

It is one thing to take a little bit of someones land in order to widen a road with a turn lane that has become very busy is one thing. While no one really likes that to happen, it is understandable and what Emminent Domain was meant for. Taking someones house to build a shopping mall owned by another private citizen for the tax revenue is deplorable.

Kuddos to Mr. Peabody. I would have liked to tell him so in the comments, but, I have been banned again from Kos. And no, I never sock puppeted over there. On several occasions, I agreed with something, and said so, and said I was a conservative, and got bounced. For agreeing. Sigh.

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