A really bad month for the little guy
I’m just feeling sick and weary at the outcome of two Supreme court decisions this month. One set precedent for a massive expansion of federal power, and the other for the power of local government.
The first decision found that if you grow marijuana in your own back yard, in accordance with the laws of your own state, for personal medical use, it is interstate commerce and can be regulated by the federal government. The abstraction, worded by majority Justice Paul Stevens, is that it might “affect interstate commerce.”
You don’t care what happens to pot smokers, you say? That is your privilege, but if plants you grow in your own yard and use yourself are interstate commerce, the feds can regulate anything. They will get around to you sooner or later.
The second decision, found by a “liberal” majority and protested by a conservative minority, found that municipalities can exercise eminent domain over your property (that is, take your property away for compensation they decide is just) so it can be handed over to developers who will generate more tax revenue.
This is a novel interpretation of eminent domain that I believe would boggle the minds of the founders. The principle of “public use” should be truly things owned by the public, like schools, roads, and city hall itself.
Are there no constitutional limitations to government power anymore?
What road are we on? How far down that road have we travelled? How fast are we going?
“Concentration of power has always been the enemy of liberty.”
- Ronald Reagan
Look for other limitations on government power to continue eroding. And here’s the kicker – “Liberal/Conservative” don’t seem to mean… anything at all here. Both sides want to interfere with your freedom somehow. “Life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness” will mean exactly what they tell you it means.
Update, 29 June ‘05:
This could be a prank or a hoax, but I sure did find it funny:
Weare, New Hampshire (PRWEB) Could a hotel be built on the land owned by Supreme Court Justice David H. Souter? A new ruling by the Supreme Court which was supported by Justice Souter himself itself might allow it. A private developer is seeking to use this very law to build a hotel on Souter’s land.
Justice Souter’s vote in the “Kelo vs. City of New London” decision allows city governments to take land from one private owner and give it to another if the government will generate greater tax revenue or other economic benefits when the land is developed by the new owner.
On Monday June 27, Logan Darrow Clements, faxed a request to Chip Meany the code enforcement officer of the Towne of Weare, New Hampshire seeking to start the application process to build a hotel on 34 Cilley Hill Road. This is the present location of Mr. Souter’s home.
Clements, CEO of Freestar Media, LLC, points out that the City of Weare will certainly gain greater tax revenue and economic benefits with a hotel on 34 Cilley Hill Road than allowing Mr. Souter to own the land.
The proposed development, called “The Lost Liberty Hotel” will feature the “Just Desserts Café” and include a museum, open to the public, featuring a permanent exhibit on the loss of freedom in America. Instead of a Gideon’s Bible each guest will receive a free copy of Ayn Rand’s novel “Atlas Shrugged.”