Skip to comments.NH: Free Stater behind anti-Souter land grab
Posted on 06/30/2005 4:06:45 PM PDT by Dada Orwell
Looks like the man trying to take over Supreme Court justice David Souter's New Hampshire home is a Free Stater (www.FreeStateProject.org). He's retaliating against Souter's support for eminent domain abuse in this weeks Kelo vs. New London ruling.
From the Concord Monitor: http://www.concordmonitor.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20050629/REPOSITORY/506290321/1031
'Hotel' targets Souter's home Property rights advocates make protest personal By MEG HECKMAN Monitor staff June 29. 2005 8:00AM
A letter that emerged yesterday from the fax machine in the Weare Town Hall has thrust Supreme Court Justice David Souter's beloved farmhouse into a national debate over property rights.
Souter, a longtime Weare resident, joined in a court decision last week that allows governments to seize private property from one owner and turn it over to another if doing so would benefit a community. Now, an outraged Californian wants to test the ruling - by asking Weare's selectmen to let him replace Souter's farm with a posh hotel.
"A recent Supreme Court decision. . . . clears the way for this land to be taken," Logan Darrow Clements wrote in a letter faxed to town officials yesterday. "The justification for such an eminent domain action is that our hotel will better serve the public interest as it will bring in economic development and higher tax revenue to Weare."
The letter, which included Souter's street address, was posted on conservative pundit Rush Limbaugh's Web site yesterday afternoon, spurring concerns in town about the reclusive justice's safety and privacy.
Souter was attacked last year while jogging in his Washington, D.C. neighborhood, although the police there believe it was not related to his work in the court. While most locals here know where he lives, they respect the justice's desire for solitude. Yesterday, for example, town officials blacked out his address before sending a copy of a letter about the hotel project to the Monitor.
Souter couldn't be reached by phone yesterday and had not yet returned to Weare last evening, but a few police cruisers were parked on the edge of his property.
"It was a precaution, just being protective," said Lt. Mark Bodanza. Clements is the CEO of Freestar Media, a Los Angeles-based outfit that fights "abusive" government through a Web site, a fledgling cable show and efforts like the one in Weare. Clements, who could not be reached yesterday, plans to move to New Hampshire soon as part of the Free State Project, a group that supports limiting government powers. Thousands of Free-Staters plan to move to New Hampshire in the next few years because of its small government, few taxes and "Live Free or Die" motto. (Other members of the project stressed that Clements's hotel plans are not affiliated with the group.)
Clements's request fascinated the staff at town hall, and Code Enforcement Officer Charles Meany said he passed the letter on to the board of selectmen.
"Am I taking this seriously? But of course," said Meany, who handles building requests. "In lieu of the recent Supreme Court decision, I would imagine that some people are pretty much upset. If it is their right to pursue this type of end, then by all means let the process begin. . . . I have to allow the law to take its course."
Clements dubbed his project the Lost Liberty Hotel, and says it will include a dining room called the Just Desserts Café and a museum focused on "the loss of freedom in America." And those Bible-leaving Gideons won't be welcome. Instead, Clements wants to tuck copies of Atlas Shrugged into the night stands, giving visitors a chance to read author Ayn Rand's individualistic tome.
Souter's two-story colonial, assessed at just more than $100,000, brought in $2,895 in property taxes last year. A hotel, especially one as unique as Clements's, would likely net the town a much greater tax payment - not to mention a potential tourism boom for local businesses.
By mid-afternoon yesterday, Meany had received two more letters about the project - one from a women in Houston, Texas vowing to visit Weare if the hotel were allowed and another from a man in McMurray, Pa. pledging financial support if town leaders choose to hand Souter's land over to Clements.
Both letter writers signaled their distain for the court's ruling in Kelo vs. City of New London.The case stems from a battle between a group of Connecticut homeowners and a city government that wants to boost tax revenue by replacing a neighborhood with an office complex. The majority opinion, written by Justice John Paul Stevens, said it was up to states, not the federal government, to craft regulations around property. Souter supported Stevens along with justices Anthony Kennedy, Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Stephen Breyer.
Weare's selectmen planned to review the letters at its meeting last night, and will decide how to proceed, said chairwoman Laura Buono.
"It was an interesting e-mail,"she said.
Even if the five-member board were to endorse Clements's project, zoning laws would have to be changed and the hotel would have to garner approval from the planning board. After that, the project would fall under Meany's watchful eye.
"The big thing is, you have to own the land before you deal with me," he said.
I'd even go to see it. I suggest he makes a public rest room right in the
very spot where the judge used to sleep. So I can have the extra pleasure
of doing in that very spot to what he did to the constitution!
Such backwards thinking on his part! Just does not get it does he? Nobody gets to own his land now, its now always for sale to any connected high bidder. So stop being so Old Fashioned and give this jerk of a judge a taste of his own whim!
"A letter that emerged yesterday from the fax machine in the Weare Town Hall has thrust Supreme Court Justice David Souter's beloved farmhouse into a national debate over property rights."
If it's property belonging to a liberal - it's "beloved". And what do they think our property means to us? Oh, I forgot - they don't care.
"The first lesson, simple as it is, is that whatever court we're in, whatever we are doing, at the end of our task some human being is going to be affected. Some human life is going to be changed by what we do. And so we had better use every power of our minds and our hearts and our beings to get those rulings right." - Justice David H. Souter upon being sworn in as a member of the SCOTUS
I love this.Best thing to come along since this horrid ruling.
Hope this guy takes HIS fight right to the SCOTUS. Wonder what Souter will do then?
He obviously didn't get it right, so, now it time for his life to undergo some changes...
He obviously didn't get it right, so, now it time for his life to undergo some changes...
He dare oppose the philosopher king?
Wow, impressively offtopic. Also, pick some real companies. I can honestly say, having lived in Mass. for 15 years, I've never interacted with any of the companies you mention, except FleetBoston. And I've started "boycotting" them since I switched to Boston Federal. BTW, I'd love to see someone who needs a coronary stent boycott Boston Scientific. That would be a real blow to gay marriage.
One of the Free Staters thinks it is a bad idea to use eminent domain - even against an eminent domain enabler...and is promising to lay down in front of any bulldozer sent to Souter-thug's house!
For Immediate Release
NH Free Stater vows to protect Supreme Court Justice Souter's home.
Newmarket, NH, June 30, 2005 - This week, a Californian named Logan Darrow Clements sent a fax to the town of Weare, NH stating his intention to build "The Lost Liberty Hotel" on the residence of Supreme Court Justice David Souter.
Locals in the town of Weare do not yet seem opposed to the hotel. Nationwide, there has been loud support for Clements' plans, showing opposition to the supreme court's decision last week allowing the city of New London, Connecticut to use eminent domain to take homes for commercial projects that propose to "benefit" the community.
But some people strongly disagree with Clements' plans for the hotel.
Mike Fisher of Newmarket, a Gandhi admirer, believes that using eminent domain against Mr. Souter is wrong. "Even Mr. Souter does not deserve to have his home taken by eminent domain. Taking away a family's home is immoral," he said.
If the hotel project is seriously pursued, in order to protect Mr. Souter's home, Fisher vows to fast for several days, consuming nothing but water and salt, "to help my friends realize what they're doing is wrong." He also vows to stand in front of any bulldozers that threaten Souter's home, blocking them at his own risk.
On May 9, Fisher used Gandhi's civil disobedience techniques to protest business licensing in New Hampshire. After announcing he would perform an unlicensed manicure in front of the state licensing offices, he followed through with his promise, earned a brief trip to jail and received heavy regional media coverage for his viewpoint.
Fisher and Clements are both members of the Free State Project (freestateproject.org), an organization which aims to bring 20,000 liberty lovers to New Hampshire.
SOB had his fingers crossed behind his back.
Signs are starting to appear at NH border crossings, underneath the ones that say "welcome to New Hampshire"
They read "except souter"
You can see one of them at www.NHfree.com
Thanks for your post. Bump.
I wrote an e-mail to him offering to invest in the Lost Freedom Hotel project, the day Rush & Drudge mentioned ths intiative. He was undoubtedly swamped. Great idea. I also told him I was well aware of the Free State initiative, of which Rush said he was a part. (It is indeeed a bit ironic that Souter is from NH.)
It is great to see Americans so aware of, & energized in defense of, private property rights by addressing threats, this terrible precedent (Kelo v. New London), and becoming aware of the downside of activist Judges. I have been concerned with both of these related issues for about a decade. I even had brief, separate, conversational encounters with two of the "good" Justices (Scalia & Thomas) in the Kelo case about 6 or 7 years ago re: "The Takings Clause" of the 5th Amendment designed to protect private property from arbitrary seizures, but providing for Eminent Domain for certain "public use" (NOT "public purpose") . It was clear they were anxious to see some good cases walk toward them. I doubt if they would have predicted the bizarre outcome in Kelo, though.
For those of us who are deeply concerned with protection of Private Property from improper application of Eminent Domain in contravention of the Original Intent of the Founders in the 5th Amendment's Takings Clause, I am registering a warning or a concern:
I think AG (& potential USSC Nominee) Alberto Gonzales is very weak on Private Property Rights and lacks an understanding of orignainl intent of the 5th Amendment's Takings Clause (Eminent Domain) based both upon some cases when he ws at the texas Supreme Ct. (e.g., FM Properties Operating Co. v. City of Austin, 22 S.W.3d 868 (Tex. 2000))
and, more recently and significantly, upon his NOT having joined in the Kelo case on the side of property owner. My understanding ws that he had sided with the League of Cities against Kelo while WH Counsel.
As some have frequently observed, he certainly believes in a "Living Constitution" and is NOT a strict constructionist or an Originalist, but rather tends toward the Activist side, per National Review Online and others.
He has been sharply critical of Priscilla Owen in some Texas Supreme Ct. decisions when they were both on that Ct. as Justices, and he has been quoted as being sharply criticial fo Janice Rogers Brown, including being quoted by People for the American Way in their ultra-leftist propaganda.