Evicted! Property Rights and Eminent Domain in America

Evicted! Property Rights and Eminent Domain in America

Evicted! Property Rights and Eminent Domain in America

Evicted! Property Rights and Eminent Domain in America

Synopsis

Evicted! is a practical and critical look at the vulnerability of Americans' property rights to eminent domain abuse since the Supreme Court's 2005 Kelo decision.

Excerpt

Rick: How can you close me up? On what grounds?
Renault: I’m shocked, shocked to find that there is gambling
going on here!
Croupier: Your winnings, sir.
Renault: Oh, thank you very much.

Casablanca (1942)

The topic of eminent domain rarely is the subject of dinner time or cocktail party conversation. Eminent domain—the power of the government to take private property for some public use— does not generate much interest or excitement for most people. Instead, talk of this topic is generally confined to a select group of individuals in rarified settings. It might be government lawyers seeking to acquire some property to build a school, widen a highway, or perhaps even to remove some eyesore or unsafe building. Or it might be the topic of conversation among real estate appraisers who are seeking to determine the fair-market value of a piece of property that the government may wish to acquire. Or perhaps it might even be brought up in a first-year law school property or constitutional law class where students are quizzed about ownership rights, the Bill of Rights, or some other arcane topic. Whatever the context, discussion of eminent domain is rarely a front page news story or the subject of much political debate and controversy.

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