California

Shikha Dalmia on Solving California's Water Crisis

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Drought
Claudio.Ar / Foter / CC BY-NC-SA

How is it that in one of richest states in the richest country on the planet, a glass of water has become a luxury item requiring government approval? For the same reason that there were breadlines in the Soviet Union: Central planning that allocated goods by fiat to favored groups rather than price signals, Reason Foundation Senior Analyst Shikha Dalmia notes.

But the same political logic that created the problem will now make it difficult to solve it, namely, the influence of powerful interest groups. Those who get the most water are being asked to make the smallest sacrifices and vice versa, under Governor Jerry Brown's plans. This means thta if Golden State's want lasting relief, they should just start praying to the gods to make rain, lots of it, every year.

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