San Antonio APA Conference - part next
The last session of the conference was a rousing debate about property rights and the Kelo decision between prominent attorneys Jerold S. Kayden and Michael Berger, moderated by Jennifer Bradley of the Community Rights Counsel.
Berger repeatedly argued that nothing in the Bill of Rights protects the government's interests, or those of the community as a whole. Kayden, the one that looks like Larry David, noted the part of the Constitution dealing with public welfare is about protecting the community and environment.
Kayden further noted that the Kelo case had become a pet political project of the Institute for Justice and conservative property rights groups. Their efforts are stage managed to focus on government harm to private property - the focus of the takings and eminent domain debate. But government also benefits property and increases value through things like public infrastructure and services. That's all supposed to balance out through the tax system, according to Berger.
Good thing I didn't have a microphone.
Both agreed that the place to try and balance interests of the individual and the community is within the community, not through ballot initiatives and courts.