BB&T Corp.'s John Allison: He's One of the GOOD Guys!

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N.C. banker takes maverick stance on eminent domain land seizures

PAUL NOWELL Associated Press

WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. - "On its face, it appeared an odd decision for a banker, to turn down business on a principle that most people don't think much about.

And so far, the banking giants haven't seen fit to follow the lead of BB&T Corp.'s John Allison, who declared in January that the nation's ninth-largest bank would no longer make loans to developers who planned to build commercial projects on land seized from private citizens through the power of eminent domain.

"We happen to believe in the fundamental concept of individual rights, and one of those is property rights," Allison said. "If that is jeopardized, our entire financial system is also in jeopardy."

The prospect of losing out on a few loans, or taking a stand alone, hasn't shaken Allison's resolve, and has only added to his reputation as a banker whose thoughts routinely stray to the philosophical."

FULL TEXT: http://www.philly.com/mld/philly/business/special_packages/cf_biz/14014709.htm

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