Skip to comments.New Londoners rage against eminent domain machine-note upcoming dates
Posted on 07/25/2005 4:30:55 AM PDT by FortRumbull
Eminent domain protesters picket Sunday in front of the home of David Goebel, chief operating officer of the New London Development Corporation. By PATRICIA DADDONA Day Staff Writer, Waterford Published on 7/25/2005
New London Eminent domain activists picketed Sunday evening in front of the home of Fort Trumbull redevelopment leader David M. Goebel as he hosted a dinner party in his back yard.
The hourlong march, marked by chants that began, We won't go, and ended with How low can you go? was the first of many that Coalition to Save Fort Trumbull members and supporters say they intend to hold in the coming days in front of the homes of public officials they call eminent domain abusers. Next up on the list are state Sen. Andrew Stillman, D-Waterford, and State Rep. Ernest Hewitt, D- New London.
Goebel is chief operating officer of the New London Development Corporation (NLDC) and lives at 771 Pequot Ave.
Now you know who David Goebel works for, don't you? one protester called out. Neighborhood Leveling Demolition Corporation.
The group is targeting lawmakers and city councilors as legislative hearings begin Thursday on how the state might handle the fallout of the Supreme Court decision on eminent domain. Those hearings could lead to legislation that would affect private property takings for economic development benefits, the motive in the recently-decided Kelo v. New London case.
The protesters decided to picket Goebel's home after reading comments he made about Susette Kelo in a story The Day published about her Saturday.
In that story Goebel criticized Kelo for perpetuating the lie that she called her pink cottage targeted for demolition home while telling the bank where she got a mortgage for an Old Lyme house that that was her primary residence.
She was not a good woman during that period, Goebel said in the story.
Kelo and those who marched with her took the comment personally and it prompted visceral reactions from her supporters Sunday.
One protester, Kathleen Mitchell, came to Kelo's defense Sunday, saying Kelo lives in the New London cottage but was forced by a state Supreme Court decision to identify the Old Lyme house as a primary residence.
He called me a liar, Kelo said as she brandished the sign, Goebel... Minister of Propaganda. Anything (else) we do is going to be a surprise: you can write that.
I stick by my words, Goebel said when reached by phone late Sunday. She was not a good person. She didn't tell the truth, either to the court system or the bank. Someone wasn't getting the straight word.
The efforts of the protesters found support Sunday night as most passing drivers leaned on their horns to show their support.
I can't blame them, said Meg Fitzgerald of Paderborn, Germany, as she walked with her mother, Mary, who lives on Pequot Avenue. She stopped to talk to the 15 people walking a perpetual circle on the sidewalk to the beat of drumsticks on plastic buckets.
She said NLDC members and proponents have got to feel it personally before they'll be moved what it means to these people (to take their property). It's not American.
Then, looking at Goebel and his guests by their pool, she added, Its uncomfortable for him, but he's just drinking cocktails in his backyard.
The Institute for Justice, which has championed the Kelo case, has asked the U.S. Supreme Court to reconsider the decision that allows the city to take private property in the Fort Trumbull neighborhood to make way for a huge new development. NLDC officials have criticized the Institute and affected property owners in the case for turning the court decision into an activist cause.
Embracing the activist image, Steve Hallquist of New London carried a yellow flag with the coiled rattlesnake and the defiant Don't Tread on Me motto.
Another sign quoted the poet John Milton: A dismal universal hiss, the sound of public scorn.
Goebel, who remained in his backyard during the picketing, minimized the impact of the parade and toots of support it generated.
It was a very good lesson for my grandson in constitutional law, Goebel said. People are allowed to picket and that is their right. But the same constitutional law is what determined what the outcome of this case was. We just turned the sound up and drowned them out. It didn't bother us.
Coalition picketing will continue tonight at 7 at the yellow 29 Colman St. New London home of Hewitt, whom they accuse of taking political contributions from the NLDC, said protester Tom Picinich.
On Aug. 1, at 7 p.m., the group will show up at Stillman's 5 Coolidge Ct. Waterford home. She sat on the bond counsel when the state agreed to provide the NLDC with millions in funding for the Fort Trumbull project, he said.
The coalition's pitch to Stillman in 2000 for an alternative plan that achieved everything they wanted and saved Fort Trumbull homes fell on deaf ears, Picinich said.
According to a flier provided by the coalition, Thursday's special session, an informational hearing, will be held at 2 p.m. in Room 2E of the state Legislative Office Building in Hartford. So far, Goebel, said the NLDC has not been invited to speak with other participants, but probably would if asked. The legislature's Judicial and Planning & Development committees are hosting the meeting.
Public hearings at which the public can speak will follow in August, the flier states.
If the property rights are to be reworked, I'd recommend including Oregon's Measure 37 in the legislation.
Measure 37 requires government to pay compensation for value reduction resulting from regulatory land use restrictions, or to waive the restriction in lieu of payment.
Info is at "Oregonians in Action ."
Important stuff ping!
Fort - you will get far better coverage of your posting with a ping to Nutmeg for her Connecticut ping list.
This topic is as important as they come!
Give em the hot foot !
The answer to eminent domain may be a little 'popular' domain.
It was a very good lesson for my grandson in constitutional law, Goebel said.
He continues pissing off people, and his grandson may get a good lesson in civil disobedience and/or the second amendment.
I definitely think the majority of the court erred in this decision.
If I were a developer, I would think I had died and gone to heaven, that it is Christmas all year round!
Development in Colorado has ignored the concerns of neighboring property owners for years. Now it will be "Katy bar the door" as developers with deep pockets have a field day.
I can see them setting up Limited Liability Corporations for the purpose of raising money for the targeted litigation to obtain the right to certain properties, then transfer that property (once won in the courts) to the next LLC for the development scheme.
There is an interesting book that raises some long term concerns and questions by Jared Diamond called "Collapse-How Societies Choose to Fail or Succeed". His thought provoking chapter of the state of Montana's predicament is a must read.
There was an old commercial I saw as a kid in the late 60's or early 70's that ended with the words:
Man does not live by development alone.
The paradigm and econometric models this country functions on are unsustainable and deeply flawed.
It is likely that this horrendously bad decision by the liberal nitwits on the Supreme court will eventually result in gunfire. Maybe not back east but western ranchers et. al. have been defending their property for generations that way.
Thanks, Fierce Allegiance... will ping the CT list now.
Please Freepmail me if you want on or off my infrequent Connecticut ping list.
Thanks for the ping.