An unlikely hero passes

November 11, 2011 | By JAMES BURLING

Last week, we lost a great freedom-fighter when Anthony Palazzolo died at the age of 91. At first blush, Anthony would seem to be an unlikely hero for a movement rooted in the intellectual traditions of the American Revolution. After all, what does a man who was a tow-truck driver and an owner of “Polly’s … ...


Which is scarier — America or Amerika?

September 19, 2012 | By JAMES BURLING

Senator Rand Paul has a new book out Government Bullies – How Everyday Americans are Being Harassed, Abused, and Imprisoned by the Feds. It’s a darn good read and I highly recommend it. Even for those of us who have read numerous books in the Big Bad Government genre, this one is still well worth … ...


The Use and Abuse of Property Rights

October 08, 2012 | By JAMES BURLING

My new article, The Use and Abuse of Property Rights in Protecting the Environment, 1 Brigham-Kanner Property Rights Conference Journal 373 (2012), has just been published in the premier edition of William & Mary Law School’s Property Rights Project’s journal. About a year ago several dozen Chinese and American scholars and pratitio ...


This Sunday is National Public Interest Law Day!

February 22, 2013 | By JAMES BURLING

We are again celebrating February 24 as National Public Interest Law Day.  This is an appropriate time to reflect on the role of lawyers in defending the liberties of Americans. As we explained last year, we chose February 24 because that was the day in 1761 that James Otis, Jr., made his impassioned defense against … ...


Forty years of the Endangered Species Act : a time for reflection

April 11, 2013 | By JAMES BURLING

I published this op-ed in the Visalia-Times Delta this morning.  Here’s a snippet: Enacted in 1973 under President Richard Nixon, the ESA authorizes federal officials to identify “endangered” and “threatened” species, and foster recovery through regulation. In one respect — the economic impact — the results are ea ...


President's weekly report — July 19, 2013

July 19, 2013 | By JAMES BURLING

Property Rights — “Inclusionary Zoning” We filed a petition for review in California Building Industry Association v. City of San Jose after a court of appeal upheld an extraordinary inclusionary zoning ordinance.  In this case developers were required to build three lower-income units for every twenty units of market rate housin ...


The One-Plan-to-Rule-Them-All — Or the Chinafication of the Bay Area

August 09, 2013 | By JAMES BURLING

We’ve been reading a lot lately about the ghastly news out of China wherein the Party has decreed a new mass migration – this time of 250 million rural residents into newly built high-rise cities to be scattered throughout the land.  There is so much wrong about this it is hard to know where to … ...


Adverse mining claim decision from the Ninth Circuit

September 24, 2013 | By JAMES BURLING

We received this adverse opinion today from the Ninth Circuit in McMaster v. United States.  Ken and Debbie McMaster had worked a small gold mining claim in the Trinity Alps Wilderness Area for many summers, supplying nugget gold for their Gold Rush Jewelry shop in Graeagle, California (right).  After their claim was swallowed up by the Wildern ...


New scholarship on Koontz

November 18, 2013 | By JAMES BURLING

Two interesting pieces of scholarship on Koontz v. St. Johns River Management District.  The first is a law review article by Steve Eagle, a professor at the George Mason School of Law, and author of the excellent treatise Regulatory Takings.  His new article, Koontz in the Mansion and Gatehouse, begins with a riff from an old … ...