All the life you can afford…but no more

Earlier today I was listening to a radio news story about the water shortage in California and an interview of Mark Arax, who is writing a book about what was described as the “water war”. It is likely being called a war because there is an obvious disconnect between those who feel an entitlement to all the water they feel they need to sustain an economic expectation (for watering fancy golf courses, almond crops, etc) and those who have the idea that water is a basic freaking need in order to sustain life. While not necessarily the same in it’s immediacy, dire consequence-wise, it made me recall the “all the education you can afford” brand of reform that is creeping up on and into our approach to public schools. Who will be getting the well watered golf courses as well as the well funded and supplied schools? Who will have access to all they could want, and how much will policymakers get perked, comped and jetted off to secure locations to be courted by private interests looking to own the public?

So is the question that’s being put before the court – is it a question of whether water intended for public use can then be diverted into a private underground storage facility?

California “water wars” seem to come with some of the same questions. Should something intended to provide physical and/or economic security for all be diverted, divided and distributed based on wealth and influence?