Executive Order

From the office of the President, on eminent domain. (Thanks to Muslihoon) It's a good start.

Over at Volokh, they're not loving it and they've got some good lawyerly reasons not to.

My take and our first Modest Proposal…The real, fair solution to the Kelo Conundrum is to bring market forces to bear on public takings.

Here's what you do:

Constitutionally define, via amendment, "just compensation" as being soley determined by the seller.

A transaction only takes place if both parties, the buyer and seller, perceive a benefit to themselves. Otherwise they choose not to participate. In the case of public taking of private property, the element of choice is removed from the seller. He or she MUST sell to the government. Our constitution limits the government from outright confiscation and says, in the Fourth Amendment, that the seller gets "just compensation." Ok, great. But how is that currently determined? Market value.

But the market has nothing to do with this transaction, because the seller MUST sell. There's no choice. So, to rectify, we should give the property owner the choice – at the level of pricing.

"Ok, Mr. Property Owner, yer gonna hafta sell us yer house and land so's we can build the Cowboys a new stadium."

"Do I have a choice?"

"No, sir. This property's ours soon as we pay you."

"Hmmm. Ok. That'll be, um…just twice whatever you're paying for Terrell Owens."

And there you have it. Justice.

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