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April 21, 2014

Andrew Silow-Carroll: Passoverkill? Suggestions to make next year's seders even more culturally sensitive

Sara Israelsen Hartley: Seeking the Divine: An ancient connection in a new context

Christine M. Flowers: Priest's execution in Syria should be call to action

Courtnie Erickson: How to help kids accept the poor decisions of others

Lizette Borreli: A Glass Of Milk A Day Keeps Knee Arthritis At Bay

Lizette Borreli: 5 Health Conditions Your Breath Knows Before You Do

The Kosher Gourmet by Betty Rosbottom Coconut Walnut Bars' golden brown morsels are a beautifully balanced delectable delight

April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review Nov. 8, 2006 / 17 Mar-Cheshvan, 5767

Legalized property theft

By John Stossel


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http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | Do you live in a blighted home in a blighted neighborhood? You might without even knowing it.


But don't worry, your local politicians will be happy to tell you — as soon as some land developer decides your neighborhood would be a great place to build swankier homes or shops.


Don't want to leave your home? Tough luck. Once the politicians, in their superior wisdom, decide that the development project will produce more tax revenue or jobs than you and your neighbors do, you'll have to go. Oh, they'll pay you something for your home, maybe less than it's worth — but you'll have no right to say no and stay where you are.


That's called progress, and it's how things go in America today. The working class is under threat of expropriation for the benefit of the well off.


Shockingly, last year, the U.S. Supreme Court said that was just fine. (Eminent domain is permitted by the Constitution for "public" uses, such as roads or post offices. Using it for private development is a fairly new practice.) After the public backlash against that ruling, over 20 states restricted the use of eminent domain for private economic development. But the protection of homeowners is less than perfect. There's always an exception for "blighted" neighborhoods.


But blight is in the eye of the beholder, and the judgment of those beholders who wield power counts more than yours.


According to the Institute for Justice (IJ), the public-interest law firm, "the definition of 'blight' has become so broad and unprincipled that governments regularly target perfectly fine homes in ordinary neighborhoods for the wrecking ball. Nice homes with spectacular oceanfront views in vibrant neighborhoods can be condemned for reasons like 'diversity of ownership,' meaning that each home is owned by a separate family — something that should be a point of pride for Americans rather than an excuse to take what rightfully belongs to a homeowner. If owning your own home means your house is blighted, whose house isn't blighted?" (IJ LINK: http://www.ij.org/private_property/longbranch/backgrounder.html)


IJ lawyers are currently defending property owners in Long Branch, N.J., whose homes are threatened by politicians and developers who want to build expensive condominiums in their place. It's odd that the politicians now call these homes "blighted" because only a few years ago, Mayor Adam Schneider praised the condition of the beachfront homes in the middle-class MTOTSA neighborhood. "If the whole area looked like [MTOTSA], we would not be doing [redevelopment]," said the mayor at the time.


Now, all of a sudden, the area needs to be leveled so developers Applied Companies and Matzel & Mumford can provided badly needed condos for the rich.


The homeowners tried to challenge the legality of the condemnations, but a court dismissed the complaint.


It's bad enough the politicians want to steal the homes of these working and retired people. But according to IJ, the city led the residents to believe a way might be found to save their homes even after they had promised the property to the developers. Says IJ: "[T]he MTOTSA homeowners took the mayor up on his offer, promising to cooperate with the city and help with neighborhood improvements. Rather than work with the homeowners, however, the city dismissed them ... " — demanding elaborate plans for expensive infrastructure improvements.


"To save their homes, in other words, Long Branch expects 93-year-old Al Viviano and his few dozen neighbors to spend hundreds of thousands of dollars on consultants and specialized urban redevelopment plans," says IJ. "[T]he problem with MTOTSA is not blight; it is that it has 93-year-old retirees, not rich and trendy professionals."


Mayor Schneider insists the residents knew the redevelopment plan already was in place and were told the chance of saving their homes was slight. And anyway, he said, he couldn't really see how the few homes in good repair could be integrated into the development plan.


Americans have long prided themselves on their homeownership. It has been seen as the key to the independence and freedom that made America what it is.


Now ownership is subject to arbitrary rule by arrogant politicians.

Every weekday JewishWorldReview.com publishes what many in in the media and Washington consider "must-reading". Sign up for the daily JWR update. It's free. Just click here.

JUST OUT FROM STOSSEL
Myths, Lies and Downright Stupidity: Get Out the Shovel --- Why Everything You Know Is Wrong  

Stossel mines his 20/20 segments for often engaging challenges to conventional wisdom, presenting a series of "myths" and then deploying an investigative journalism shovel to unearth "truth." This results in snappy debunkings of alarmism, witch-hunts, satanic ritual abuse prosecutions and marketing hokum like the irradiated-foods panic, homeopathic medicine and the notion that bottled water beats tap. Stossel's libertarian convictions make him particularly fond of exposes of government waste and regulatory fiascoes. Sales help fund JWR.



JWR contributor John Stossel is co-anchor of ABC News' "20/20." To comment, please click here.


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