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Author Topic: Supreme Court OK's seizure of personal property  (Read 6308 times)

A.J.

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Re: Supreme Court OK's seizure of personal property
« Reply #30 on: June 24, 2005, 12:15:56 PM »
I have to say I really disagree with the way youre trying to characterize the issue.  I think its more a matter of weighing social costs and benifits than anything else.  Our government builds our cities, yes?  It plans and it develops with an eye to its constituency, yes?  Is this tantamount to communism or socia-economic dictatorship?  I think not.

 

amarain

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Re: Supreme Court OK's seizure of personal property
« Reply #31 on: June 24, 2005, 12:19:06 PM »
I have to say I really disagree with the way youre trying to characterize the issue.  I think its more a matter of weighing social costs and benifits than anything else.  Our government builds our cities, yes?  It plans and it develops with an eye to its constituency, yes?  Is this tantamount to communism or socia-economic dictatorship?  I think not.

 

Yes, that's true, but it is implied that the government builds cities with the people's consent. The notion of giving the government such overly broad powers to develop and destroy against the will of the people is very dangerous, in my opinion.

Basically, I don't trust the government.

A.J.

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Re: Supreme Court OK's seizure of personal property
« Reply #32 on: June 24, 2005, 12:27:26 PM »
But again youve run into the problem of what groups "will" weighs more or less.






Are we going to get after this stuff policy stuff in law school? 


If so itll have its bright spot for sure.  ;)

BoscoBreaux

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Re: Supreme Court OK's seizure of personal property
« Reply #33 on: June 24, 2005, 12:44:16 PM »
Say what you will, but I want to at least throw it out there that maybe you should wait until at least you've been at law school for a bit before you so readily criticize a Supreme Court ruling.  It is undeniable that yes, this ruling sucks for the plaintiffs in this actual case and for people who may become the subject of an aggressive city in the future.  But, the opinions themselves show that this case was about a lot more than fair and unfair.  It was, to a large degree, about precedent.  Some pretty well-entrenched precedent existed that logically pointed to this outcome, as troubling as that may have been for the 5 Justice majority.  I'm sure they weren't sitting around saying "Aha, I'm going to rule this way because I like shopping malls better than poor people."  They looked at the precedent and said "well, this is how the cookie crumbles unless we completely change course on this issue."  With so much course changing occuring in other recent Supreme Court opinions, I am sure these Justices are a little tired of the "activist" word.  This case also had a lot to do with deference.  Those of you that are about to go to law school will learn about the significant deference that courts are supposed to give to decisions made by other branches of government that have the authority and expertise needed to make those decisions.  It isn't a court's job to second-guess everything that the executive or legislative branches do.  Instead, the court's sole role is to weigh in on the legality of a decision, not the wisdom.  At the Supreme Court level, their job is to determine the constitutionality of a decision, and the Constitution cuts a pretty broad swath of permissible actions, especially in the economic arena.

Though I usually tend to side with the O'Connor, Scalia, Thomas, Rehnquist group, I think the majority got this one right.  The dissent is "correct" when it says that this opens the door to many abusive practices, but its slippery-slope logic is a fallacy and the political process will, theoretically, keep the local governments in check.
I donít think one needs a law degree to justify the belief that an opinion of a court is faulty. Ultimately, every case that makes it way to the Supreme Court has the complexity you suggest. Moreover, most cases have even more competing policy purposes to be considered than the instant case. And while going into all of the complexities of the case may be warranted on a law exam, to the rest of the world, the decision in the end is all that matters. Everything else is academic.
Would one suggest criticism of the Dred Scott decision be suspended until after One L?

But there is a more fundamental flaw in your analysis that warrants comment. You are correct in that courts, even the Supreme Court, must respect binding precedent. However, the determination of whether the facts of the case apply to it adequately enough to consider it binding leaves a lot of discretion in the hands of a judge. Some judges said the facts were consistent with prior rulings, the dissenters said they were not. To say that the (slim) majority was bound by the decision and their holding was ďcorrectĒ  implies that (sizeable) minority opinion effectively ignored precedent  and were incorrect. The complexity that you argue makes deliberateness in opinion necessary also increases the odds that there is no one correct answer.  Most cases, in reality, are merely a matter of opinion (as evidenced by the split rulings that are all too common from the Supremes).

Further, while you are correct that judges donít (or at least should not) decide cases based merely on their preferences for which type of person should be a winner and which should loser, the myriad of policy purposes which are undeniably involved in this case and others can lead to a persuasive argument from either side of the debate. In the end, however, it is the individualís sense of which policy purposes should prevail which governs their opinion.

A.J.

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Re: Supreme Court OK's seizure of personal property
« Reply #34 on: June 24, 2005, 12:48:03 PM »
In the end, however, it is the individualís sense of which policy purposes should prevail which governs their opinion.


Indeed, judicial "attitude" according to Llewellyn.  Are you a current student?

ViagraSaint

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Re: Supreme Court OK's seizure of personal property
« Reply #35 on: June 24, 2005, 01:00:17 PM »
i thought the wording in the constitution allowed seizure for public use.  it's a question if using the local government is a shell game for commerical use, because obviously commercial and public use are not one in the same.  a commercial entity such as land developers would be prohibied from seizing property directly from an individual. so what is being questioned is if there is a degree of laundering in which essentially the same action is occuring where the commercial land-developers uses the local government as a proxy, procedural step.  we hope the court offered guidelines in which the burden is on the local government for proving the seizure benefits the public as a whole.

IMO, Walmart is commercial use.. and rarely could a seizure of private property for building a walmart and developing said supercenter comprise public use.  is there a series of tests or objective means of determining this?  holy *&^%, i can't believe id be siding with scalia and thomas... this is a first

Julee Fern

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Re: Supreme Court OK's seizure of personal property
« Reply #36 on: June 24, 2005, 01:16:51 PM »
I'm not sure how fair market value differs from actual market rate. 

Sure, someone may underprice their home, or they may overprice it.  The trick is to first establish what someone would actually pay for it.


Where I live houses go for 30-50,000 over asking price, easily.

If your mortgage was locked in at a low interest rate, this could also really screw you.


You're missing the point -- the 30/50K plus represents the true fair market value / actual market rate -- what people are willing to pay. 

The asking price was therefore an incorrect estimation of FMV/MR. 

I'm not sure how this is determined for purposes of takings compensation -- just noting that the FMV/MR should in fact be whatever people are willing to pay.
goooooo al qaeda!  gooooooo bin laden!  go, go, osama bin laden!

never mind all people you killing senselessly--that just more that silly conservative thinking.  what important is scooter libby and cheney's former employers.  beeeeeeee substantive!

Julee Fern

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Re: Supreme Court OK's seizure of personal property
« Reply #37 on: June 24, 2005, 01:20:48 PM »
Say what you will, but I want to at least throw it out there that maybe you should wait until at least you've been at law school for a bit before you so readily criticize a Supreme Court ruling.  It is undeniable that yes, this ruling sucks for the plaintiffs in this actual case and for people who may become the subject of an aggressive city in the future.  But, the opinions themselves show that this case was about a lot more than fair and unfair.  It was, to a large degree, about precedent.  Some pretty well-entrenched precedent existed that logically pointed to this outcome, as troubling as that may have been for the 5 Justice majority.  I'm sure they weren't sitting around saying "Aha, I'm going to rule this way because I like shopping malls better than poor people."  They looked at the precedent and said "well, this is how the cookie crumbles unless we completely change course on this issue."  With so much course changing occuring in other recent Supreme Court opinions, I am sure these Justices are a little tired of the "activist" word.  This case also had a lot to do with deference.  Those of you that are about to go to law school will learn about the significant deference that courts are supposed to give to decisions made by other branches of government that have the authority and expertise needed to make those decisions.  It isn't a court's job to second-guess everything that the executive or legislative branches do.  Instead, the court's sole role is to weigh in on the legality of a decision, not the wisdom.  At the Supreme Court level, their job is to determine the constitutionality of a decision, and the Constitution cuts a pretty broad swath of permissible actions, especially in the economic arena.

Though I usually tend to side with the O'Connor, Scalia, Thomas, Rehnquist group, I think the majority got this one right.  The dissent is "correct" when it says that this opens the door to many abusive practices, but its slippery-slope logic is a fallacy and the political process will, theoretically, keep the local governments in check.


Lenny, you're missing the point that the ruling here was in no way foreordained or pre-determined by prior rulings.  Yes, the government has traditionally been allowed to take property for public use.  The question here was whether commercial development constituted public use.  The argument that it is not public use is at least as strong here. 

(I could go into the fact that even the SCOTUS overturns prior questionable decisions, as in Lawrence v. Texas.  However, it really isn't even necessary to do so here.)
goooooo al qaeda!  gooooooo bin laden!  go, go, osama bin laden!

never mind all people you killing senselessly--that just more that silly conservative thinking.  what important is scooter libby and cheney's former employers.  beeeeeeee substantive!

InVinoVeritas

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Re: Supreme Court OK's seizure of personal property
« Reply #38 on: June 24, 2005, 01:26:17 PM »
i thought the wording in the constitution allowed seizure for public use. it's a question if using the local government is a shell game for commerical use, because obviously commercial and public use are not one in the same. a commercial entity such as land developers would be prohibied from seizing property directly from an individual. so what is being questioned is if there is a degree of laundering in which essentially the same action is occuring where the commercial land-developers uses the local government as a proxy, procedural step. we hope the court offered guidelines in which the burden is on the local government for proving the seizure benefits the public as a whole.

IMO, Walmart is commercial use.. and rarely could a seizure of private property for building a walmart and developing said supercenter comprise public use. is there a series of tests or objective means of determining this? holy *&^%, i can't believe id be siding with scalia and thomas... this is a first

here's the problem though, from what i recall from the facts of the case, the most of the development would be used for commercial purposes (pfizer research, condo developments), and only a small part could unequivocally be characterized as public use (US Coast Guard Museum).  So, if that's the case, what's to prevent a similar case in which Wal-Mart would be the primary commercial beneficiary, from being struck down by a court?  Afterall, if building a Wal-Mart is part of a city's developments plans and a convincing case could be made that having the Wal-Mart would increase the tax base, it seems to me the doctrine of eminent domain prevails based on the Kelo ruling, no?  Afterall, I've essentially substitute Pfizer for Wal-Mart.

Julee Fern

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Re: Supreme Court OK's seizure of personal property
« Reply #39 on: June 24, 2005, 01:26:42 PM »
I think this is horrible. A huge step backward for the rights of private citizens.

Utterly unfathomable. What policy purpose does this serve OTHER than to make those with money and power MORE POWERFUL? I, too, am shocked I agree with Scalia, but I am more shocked that Scalia didn't yet again invent constitutional protections for corporations and the wealthy at the expense of everyone else. Maybe he had a change of heart.


People "shocked" by their agreement with Scalia et al here seem ignorant of the fact that conservatives traditionally favor individual property rights over the right of society to violate those rights for ostensible public good.  Liberals, on the other hand, are traditionally more willing to favor the sacrifice individual property rights for the ostensible public good.  This decision is fully in accord with traditional conservative/liberal values and voting patterns.  If the decision troubles you, you may want to reexamine your own values, and those of the respective parties.  

(It should be noted that all the Justices nominated by Democrats voted in favor of this ruling, and all Justices voting against it were nominated by Republicans.)
goooooo al qaeda!  gooooooo bin laden!  go, go, osama bin laden!

never mind all people you killing senselessly--that just more that silly conservative thinking.  what important is scooter libby and cheney's former employers.  beeeeeeee substantive!