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Re: [at-l] Saddleback

Walt Daniels wrote:

> I can understand (but disagree with) people who dislike eminent domain. Like
> many tools it can be misused. 

Regardless of whether you think the Congressional mandate to
acquire land for the Appalachian Trail corridor is appropriate
or even legitimate, don't you believe that using eminent domain
to condemn land up to a mile from the trail -- which is well
beyond the Congressional mandate -- is abusive of that power?

Just a wee bit? 

Hey, dig this excerpt from http://www.atconf.org/History/history13.html

"The central thrust of the amendments was an acceleration of the
Interior Department's land-acquisition program to protect the
A.T. Congress authorized $90 million for this purpose (with a
portion to be actually appropriated each year) and extended the
range of the program's eminent-domain authority to an *average* of
125 acres per mile, significantly greater than the 25 acres-per-
mile maximum allowed by the original act.

"For corridor acquisition as a whole, the legislative history
behind these amendments shows congressional intent that the
width be expanded from roughly 200 feet to about 1,000 feet,
a yardstick developed a few years earlier as a result of a
University of Pennsylvania study of the Trail."

I don't know about you, but I consider it an abuse of power for
the NPS to wield something that is *supposed* to be a tool of last
resort for the sake of viewshed. It stretches the "average" 
1000-foot corridor mandate beyond passing the straight face test.

And aren't you in the least bit concerned about the precedent
this might be setting for the future? I sure as hell am.

>Consider the following discussion:
> Man asks girl if she would for $1.
> Girl says no.
> Man asks girl if she would for $1,000,000
> Girl says yes.
> Man: Now that we have determined what kind of girl you are we are only
> haggling over the price.

That's a lame excuse for rape, which is what we're really talking
about here.

"Can you believe that bitch? She wanted a million dollars for
a little of the ol' in-out, in-out...Huh? Rape?...So what if I
forced her to? Everything's cool, I left a couple of Franklins
on the bed afterwards. She's just a whore anyway."

The issue at hand isn't whether the woman is a prostitute. The
fact that she "has her price" doesn't justify the man forcing
himself on her -- at *any* price. 

I thought that "no" meant no.

> Eminent domain is used when the owner won't sell at an appraised price, i.e.
> wants more than the property is worth. 

The appraised value has little to do with what the property is
worth, as worth is subjective. 

>                                        At that point it is up to the courts
> to decide if the appraised price is fair. 

Screw the courts. The only "fair" price is one that's arrived
at through negotiation and, more importantly, mutual consent.
Anything else is thievery.

>                                           The government cannot pay more
> than the appraised price without going through the eminent domain process so
> that the land owner gets a fair hearing. [Yes you can argue that the courts
> are not fair, but that is a different problem.] Sentimental value is very
> hard to put a price on. This is not a case of sentimental value. 

Really? I'd read a number of sentimental appeals on the trailplace

>                                                                  It is a
> case of a greedy landowner trying to bilk the government. 


You trying to push my buttons on purpose, kid?

It's working. :)

>                                                           There is very
> little evidence that he will every extend the skiing but is using it as an
> excuse to jack the price up even beyond what appraisers in the ski business
> say it is worth.

So? The landowner knows he's is going to lose his property whether
he plays nice or not, so why shouldn't he attempt to minimize his
loss? Why should the landowner meekly submit to your land grab? 

"If you struggle, you'll only make it worse on yourself."

Furthermore, why should *you* care how much the landowner asks for
if you're just going to call on the Feds to take it by force anyway?
It's a moot issue.

...or were you counting on the victim's sanction as a moral fig
leaf to hide behind? 

And you dare call the landowner greedy. :)

> In the Saddleback case the landowner is willing to sell but at a price way
> above the appraisal. This seems to fit the prostitute model above very well.

Next time you're in a gear shop and you see a backpack that you
want, but believe that the store is charging too much for it,
just take it and leave whatever money you and your buddies think
is "fair" in its place. That also seems to fit the prostitute
model very well.

mfuller@somtel.com; Northern Franklin County, Maine         $
The Constitution is the white man's ghost shirt.  }>:-/> --->

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