Property Rights

New York's Highest Court Upholds Columbia University's Eminent Domain Abuse

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New York's Court of Appeals—the state's highest court—issued its decision today in the Columbia University eminent domain case, upholding the state's controversial land grab on behalf of the elite private university. Exactly as it did in last year's disastrous Atlantic Yards ruling, the Court of Appeals shirked its judicial responsibility and ruled that the Empire State Development Corporation's flawed and pretextual blight findings "were rationally based and entitled to deference." So much for an independent judiciary that stands up for constitutional rights.

I'll have more to say about this abysmal decision later. For now, you can read it for yourself right here.

NEXT: InstaVision with Glenn Reynolds: Where Have You Gone, Jacques Cousteau?

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  1. All your houses are belong to us.

    1. Ignorant Peasants.

  2. The nice part of working with a view of the NYS Capitol and the NYS Court of Appeals? You can walk to your window and flip them off whenever you need to. That was cathartic.

    1. The best part of the exit off of 87 onto 90 at Albany is that you never have to go into Albany.

      1. I’ll flip them off on the drive home today, for everyone who can’t.

        1. Dude, you’re going to have to pull over to get in that many flip-offs.

          1. Oh, I just meant one bird to cover everyone. Yeah, I’m not stopping stopping my car in Albany.

  3. the Empire State Development Corporation’s flawed and pretextual blight findings “were rationally based and entitled to deference.

    The court sees itself as a rubber stamp for government actions.

    That’s nice.

  4. This ruling is horrible. So is the absence of the crowd that shows up to every Israel posting here to preach about property rights.

    1. We don’t OWN is real. We only give them a couple billion/year.

      New York is/should be subject to our own fucking constitution.

  5. Yo, fuck John Paul Stevens.

    1. Don’t worry, Elena Kagan will replace him soon enough.

      1. Yeah, she is going to be so much better. Right? 😉

        1. I’m down with the Kagan.

    2. remember he was a warrior for the little guy.

      1. Riiiight.

  6. You can’t expect the unwashed masses to use their property wisely. The government has to step in a ensure everything is distributed fairly.

    1. I stepped in a ensure once.

      Took me 30 minutes to clean my shoe.

  7. …step in and ensure…

    typing is haaaaard

  8. I’m glad to see that the progressives among the Columbia faculty and student body are doing everything that they can to stand up for the little guys here and prevent this great injustice from happening.

    1. Principles or Cheap Realestate? Yo, fuck principles, i wants me some skrimps yo!

    2. They’re doing god’s work there.

      1. If all these liberal groups are doing god’s work, then what the hell is god doing? Is he lazy and they just picked up the slack or did he trick them a la Tom Sawyer?

        1. If I were god, that’s what I’d do. Why do something I can get someone else to do for me?

        2. No the liberal elite have just decided that God is uneducated and ignorant, after all he doesn’t have a degree from Harvard or Yale, so they took over the job from him and put it in the hands of the government so it could be handled more efficiently.

  9. I’ll have more to say about this abysmal decision later.

    Yes, can we all reconvene once we’re done vomiting?

  10. I told someone recently that my morning religious ritual consists of turning east to pray toward Jersualem and then turning north to flip off Washington. I guess I will have to add a double bird to the morning mix on behalf of the people of New York.

    1. How about placing a photo at the bottom of ones shitter. Then the remainder of the morning routine (after a NICE big cup of coffee) would be JUST about right. 😉

  11. Jeebus, I could only make it halfway through the decision. Sickening. Demolishing retail and service businesses so that Columbia can build (in part)…a retail center. Destroying for-profit (tax-paying) business for a non-profit. Condemnation decision based on a finding that “a few buildings” in West Harlem were “dilapidated.”

    All I can say is, all you MFers out there better keep your homes and buildings immaculate, or some unelected, unaccountable local central planning board is going to steal your shit.

    1. All I can say is, all you MFers out there better keep your homes and buildings immaculate, or some unelected, unaccountable local central planning board is going to steal your shit.

      That’s not enough. You have to ensure that everybody within six city blocks also keeps their homes and businesses immaculate. Then maybe the state of New York will leave you alone.

      1. Also, you need to donate a lot of money to incumbent campaigns at all levels. Then, with a little luck, they’ll leave you alone. Until someone comes along and gives them more money.

        1. Also, you need to donate a lot of money to incumbent campaigns at all levels.

          FREEDOM OF SPEECH BITCHES!! WOOO HOO

  12. Our best and brightest young minds will pull out all the stops to keep a few trees from being cut down, but taking away the homes and livelihoods a actual *human beings* for the benefit of large politically well-connected organizations is no big deal.

    1. They want all those humans dead to save the trees. Where is the contradiction?

    2. The left is, in large part, phenomenally hypocritical on ED abuse. Do they really care about “the little guy” or is it the big state that has their fancy?

      Any team blue members want to jump in here?

      1. We have to destroy the village to save it. Omelets, eggs…you know the drill.

      2. (crickets)

      3. The state is the little guy. We’re starving here!

  13. Am I clairvoyant, or am I just a pessimist:

    Paul|5.27.10 @ 3:22PM|#
    I appreciate Reason exposing all these cases of Eminent Domain abuse, but I really think it’s easier to just skip to the end and write an article about how sad we were that property owners lost their case.

    1. Some of us like thinking that maybe, just maybe, they won’t beat us and throw us down the stairs this time.

  14. Like I keep on telling people: the U.S. is quickly becoming a 3rd world country and is quickly become one of the most corrupt countries on the planet. We are the next India, Brazil, China…Not the other way around…

  15. I think that Walter Block said it best.

    http://bp0.blogger.com/_lL4RDB…..h/Blog.JPG

  16. Those subject to this form of abuse need to adopt a poison pill strategy.

    You want it, yeah, well fuck you and you can have it. (In the dead of night pours a few hundred gallons of nasty chemicals all over the property – weed killers, motor oil, paint thinner, MEK, etc.)

    Scorched earth never looked so good….

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