Thursday, October 1, 2009

Torture memo author rules against rent control

Remember Jay S. Bybee, one of the torture memo authors, rewarded by George W. Bush with a lifetime federal appeals court appointment? The NY Times called for his impeachment earlier this year, noting: "These memos make it clear that Mr. Bybee is unfit for a job that requires legal judgment and a respect for the Constitution."

Well, Judge Bybee is up to no good again, this time authoring a 2-1 decision in which a federal Court ruled against a CA mobilehome rent control ordinance. In this preposterous decision, the court bends over backwards to conclude that a park owner was denied "investment backed expectations" because of the ordinance, notwithstanding the fact that the park owner bought the park with full knowledge of the rent control law. Judge Bybee was joined by Judge Alfred T. Goodwin, a Nixon-appointee.

That's right, the very person that couldn't find a right to be free from torture in our constitution has now found a constitutional right of mobilehome park owners to be free from a City's rent control law.

The decision is flawed on many levels. Let's hope the Ninth Circuit reviews the case en banc so that this decision will not stand.


  1. Wow. What a distinguished legal career.

  2. It's called "deregulation." By Far Right appointees. Provide for "Owner Class" wealth while economically harming seniors and working families--just like the Bush tax cuts and the wars for oil and munitions stockholders. That's our justice system. The judge (Bybee) SAYS Rent Control is a "Takings," just as he SAID torture was lawful and it was ok for the Bush administration to invade a foreign country (according to HIS interpretation of the Constitution.) Where's the democracy "checks and balances we learned about in high school? They don't exist.