Wednesday, August 10, 2005

Indiana Libertarians at Eminent Domain Hearing

The General Assembly House Summer Study Committee met today in Indianapolis at the Indiana Government Center Auditorium. There was a very good crowd to participate in the hearing focusing on eminent domain and the Kelo decision of the US Supreme Court.

Indiana Libertarians were well represented there. I was able to attend for about an hour and was able to hear Mike Sylvester speak. He is the Chair of the Allen County Libertarian Party. Mike did a very good job staying focused and highlighting the abuses of the City of Fort Wayne in its use of eminent domain powers in the expansion of the Grand Wayne Center.

Also, present were Rebecca Sink-Burris, Secretary of the Libertarian Party of Indiana, as well as Mike Kole, who is seeking the Libertarian nomination for Secretary of State in 2006. Mike was accompanied by his wife, Ame, and their baby daughter, Isabel. Mike and Rebecca were both signed up to speak, but I had to leave before their turn to do so.


Joe Hauptmann said...

great representation! Hope we keep on this issue.

Mike Kole said...

I was able to speak, eventually. As much of my thunder had been stolen by previous speakers, I stuck to two themes: Your home is your castle; and, Your home is the embodyment of the American Dream. The reason so many Americans were outraged at the Kelo decision is that more Americans and Hoosiers are homeowners than ever before. They understand that their homes is -or should be- their castle, and that Kelo puts their own version of the American Dream at risk.

Mike Sylvester had the whole room cracking up when addressing the issue of declaring areas 'blighted', he pointed out that a Taco Bell and an Arby's Restaurant were included in the so-called blighted area. He quipped, "I've never seen a blighted Taco Bell." It brought laughter from the committee and the floor alike.

We will keep on this issue. It's gratifying to see the public come to understand this very libertarian issue. At last they can see the folly of the doctrine of the common good. They get how the sacrificing individuals to the common good is a slippery slope, and leaves them vulnerable. It's a shame it had to get this far out of hand before the understanding would come, but it is here!