22 Jul 2008 Government Pirates: The Assault on Private Property Rights and How We Can Fight It
David Ridenour shared news of a new property rights information resource with the National Center for Public Policy Research’s email list last night:
I’m writing to tell you about an excellent new book – and exceptional resource – that will be released tomorrow, “Government Pirates: The Assault on Private Property Rights and How We Can Fight It.” It was written by my friend Don Corace and I had the privilege of getting an advance peak at the book.
The book details a series of property rights horror stories, some that you’ve no doubt heard about, such as the Kelo v. City of New London eminent domain case, and some that might be unfamiliar to you.
Corace tells the story, for example, of Jim and Tom Stephanis, who fought the City of Pompano Beach to build a hotel on a 1.3-acre site where their restaurant once stood. They fought the city for 31 years, during which time the Pompano government officials stonewalled the project through bureaucratic shenanigans and frivolous lawsuits. The city even deliberately violated a court order. The Stephanis brothers won nine consecutive lawsuits and numerous appeals before a chief justice of the Florida Supreme Court intervened, ordering an appeals venue change and hand-picking the judges who would hear the case – a highly-irregular and controversial move. This was the turning point in their battle and the Stephanises ultimately lost millions they’d invested in the project. Within a year of their final blow – the U.S. Supreme Court refusing to hear their case – Jim Stephanis suffered a major stroke. Today he works as a wine manager for a liquor store. His brother, Tom, is retired.
Government Pirates provides especially good insights on how government and outside special interests collaborate to take away Americans’ property rights. As a successful real estate developer, Corace has seen this process up-close, first-hand.
If you’d like to take a look at sample pages of the book or see where you can tune in to hear Don Corace talking about the book (he’ll be on Hannity and Colmes this week, for example), check out the Government Pirates website. Journalists and bloggers can download a press kit or email publisher HarperCollins here. To pre-order Government Pirates right now, go here.
This book is not only a must-read, but a vital reference book for your library. I encourage you not only to purchase it, but to tell others about this truly important contribution to the property rights movement.
David A. Ridenour