“The substantial value of property lies in its use. If the right of use be denied, the value of the property is annihilated and ownership is rendered a barren right.””


In a “Fifth Amendment” treatise by State Supreme Court Justice Richard B. Sanders (12/10/97), he writes:

“Property “is defined by (Washington) state law. Board of Regents v. Roth, 408 U.S. 564, 92 S. Ct. 2701, 2709, 33 L. Ed. 2d 548 (1972). Our state, and most other states, define property in an extremely broad sense.”

“Property in a thing consists not merely in its ownership and possession, but in the unrestricted right of use, enjoyment, and disposal. Anything which destroys any of the elements of property, to that extent, destroys the property itself. The substantial value of property lies in its use. If the right of use be denied, the value of the property is annihilated and ownership is rendered a barren right.”

Ackerman v. Port of Seattle, 55 Wn.2d 400, 409, 348 P.2d 664 (1960) (quoting from Spann v. City of Dallas, 111 Tex. 350, 355, 235 S.W. 513, 19 A.L.R. 1387 (1921)).

And further, Justice Sanders states:

“While it is up to each state to define property for itself, the right to use one’s property has been universally understood to be a fundamental attribute of real property ownership. Compare Eaton v. Boston, C. and M.R.R., 51 N.H. 504, 511-512 (1872) (“the framers of the Constitution intended to protect property rights which are worth protecting; not mere empty titles . . . among those elements is, fundamentally, the right of use . . . “) and Lord Coke: “to deprive one of the use of his land is depriving him of his land. What is the land but the profits thereof?” See also John M. Groen and Richard M. Stephens, Takings Law, Lucas, and the Growth Management Act, 16 U. Puget Sound L. Rev. 1259, at 1266, 1295 (Spring 1993).”

Even a layman can understand that when “use” is severely restricted or taken, ownership becomes a barren right. If property ownership is a “barren” right, then private citizens have no right to own property. If the private citizen has no right to own property, then it follows that Government “owns” all property. Many in government and the environmental movement actually believe this and would like to see this to be the final outcome of private property in America today, the Constitution be damned.

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The above definition of Property Rights was written by Ron Ewart, President of the National Association of Rural Landowers and delivered as part of his testimony to the King County Council of Washington State, in rebuttal to a proposed draconian environmental ordinance called the Critical Areas Ordinance. In spite of voluminous negative testimony by hundreds of local rural owners and vociferous opposition from the Republicans on the County Council, the Democrats, in the majority on the council, passed the ordinance anyway. All of these environmental ordinances that are being passed throughout America, in compliance with the policies of UN’s Agenda 21, fall disproportionately on the American rural landowner. The rural landowner is being asked to bear almost the entire burden of environmental protection, while their city brethren get off virtually scot-free. But then that is where most of the radical enviornmentalists live and they are the ones who elect our representatives that pass the laws on top of the rural landowner. Hardly equal treatment under the law.