California

Could California's Water Crisis Have Been Avoided?

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Originally published on June 10, 2015. Original text below:

California's water crisis is the disaster everybody saw coming but nobody had the political will to stop. It's the byproduct of a broken system that's dominated by self-serving elites and misguided ideologues. Or so says Joel Kotkin, a distinguished professor at Chapman University, who writes frequently about Golden State politics.

Kotkin says the drought could have been avoided through a combination of tactics, such as making farmers pay closer to a market rate on the water they use, or by allowing desalinization, a process in which the salt is removed from ocean water. But California's political leaders couldn't get it together to enact the policies that would have averted the water crisis.

If the Golden State can't fix its water problems, Kotkin argues, many industries will have to leave the state, destroying opportunities for poorer Californians, and exacerbating the growing class divide.

About 3.5 minutes

Produced by Alex Manning. Camera by Alexis Garcia.

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  1. It would take a special group of people to create a water crisis in a state with over a thousand miles of coastline.

    1. You do realize that the water along that thousand miles of coastline is salt water, not usable for drinking or agriculture (without enormous energy expenditure in desalination)?

      1. Oh, good! Attention whore shows up for attention!
        Fuck off.

      2. Of course, and, if you watched the video, environmentalist retards oppose people even being able to do that. They care more about the delta smelt than they do people.

  2. Here is the more cogent question, Alex…how many future water crises (flooding or drought) could have been avoided with just some acceptance to the science of climate change. Woulda, shoulda, coulda…a libertarians lament.

    1. how many future water crises (flooding or drought) could have been avoided with just some acceptance to the science of climate change.

      That’s a good point. The coastal flooding of 2000, the climate refugees of 2010…just yesterday, New York City was totally submerged.

      If only we climate change deniers had the honesty and integrity to admit when we were shown to be wrong.

      1. Here is a tip for you…when the comment is about “science” you may want to quote science organizations, like American Geophysical Union, rather than ABC network that was hyping a tv show with a clip quoting teenagers and unnamed individuals, ok? I know libertarians don’t get science, but next time give it at least a cursory attempt.

        1. Yea, how dare he point out the willingness of guys like Lonnie Thompson (who ‘advised’ Al Gore on An Inconvenient Truth) to lie publicly and to the media about the science to drum up fear! They are lying for a good cause and libertarians just don’t understand science…

          Don’t you have an anti-GMO protest to attend, Jackand Ace?

        2. In that ABC special, James Hansen, Peter Gleick, and John Holdren were among the scientists who were consulted. Big Science did not go unrepresented in that TV show.

          1. And they didn’t say that about NYC in 2015, did they? Let us all know what they said about 2015.

            1. No, they just said milk and gas would be unaffordable and there would be chaos and anarchy while showing pictures of a flooded NY right after graphics talking about what 2015 would be like. Nothing dishonest there at all…

              According to those real scientists who contribute to the UN’s reports, we’ve just passed the point of no return on climate change about half a dozen times now.

              1. One of these days.. you’ll be sorry.. You’ll all be sorry.. Global warming will only spare the faithful on judgment day.. The heretics, the apostates.. the non-believers shall be cast into an unbearable hell of parched, slightly hotter deserts, and beachfront communities with somewhat higher tides..

              2. Good for you! Admitting film editing fooled you into thinking scientists said NYC would be submerged in 2015! Now, care to quote exactly what scientists said about milk prices on 2015? No?

                1. Jackand Ace|6.13.15 @ 12:23PM|#
                  “Good for you! Admitting film editing fooled you into thinking scientists said NYC would be submerged in 2015!”

                  Good for you! Admitting that the AGW films are so much propaganda!

                2. I do love the references to science and scientists like they are a monolithic force, but you obviously missed the point.

                  You have global warming advocates who are highly respected in their fields participating in that report. You have them advising Al Gore when he makes his claim that NY would in fact be under water by now and that the ice caps would have all melted.

                  Scientists didn’t physically say those things. They apparently told others to say them or were fine having their name behind them.

                  1. Oh, it’s fairly monolithic when it comes to climate change.

                    Who is this Al Gore of which you speak. I keep quoting scientists…is he one?

                    1. Jackand Ace|6.13.15 @ 1:32PM|#
                      “[..]I keep quoting scientists…is he one?”

                      No, Jack, you haven’t quoted anyone at all. And you’ve yet to tell us about those predictions and that fracking.
                      So, until you have something to say, you might just STFU.

        3. Jackand Ace|6.13.15 @ 11:14AM|#
          “Here is a tip for you….”

          Here’s a tip for you, Jack: what you claim to be science has yet to produce ONE result on predictions. Not ONE. Now I know you love spouting about how you are quoting science, but the fact is you just one more f’ing bleever following ‘the authorities’.
          Also, Jack, what happened to the new study that proved fracking causes earthquakes? That should be such news that it is trumpeted by every ignorant Malthusian from here to the NYT! And not a word.
          Might that be because you’re an ignorant Malthusian suckered by every damn charlatan who wonders down the pike? Yes, I believe it is.
          What an imbecile.

      2. By the way, it’s about right that you get your science from Newsbsters…figures

        1. When you can’t dispute the message, attack the messenger.

    2. The sheer inanity of this comment is astounding. How many future crises could have been avoided (past tense)? Well, there’s a question to ponder when we get time machines.

      You have a state with a growing population that was settled during a period of unusually high rain fall. You have billions of gallons of water being diverted for a salmon. They’ve neglected their water infrastructure for over 40 years. One desalination plant spent 15 years in the permitting process going through a series of six environmental lawsuits and can’t open until 2016 as a result.

      Idiots like you are behind the drought. Not global warming.

    3. Won’t somebody think of the children Smelt?

      1. Evil and competent I can respect. Stupid and petty I can’t. A fucking salmon…a single fucking species of salmon. I’d laugh if California wasn’t receiving billions of tax dollars (most of which will be unspent or misappropriated) to solve this crisis…

        1. A glaring issue that Jackand Ass overlooks whilst beating Libertarian luddites and rubes over the head with his(her?) keen grasp of “settled science”..

    4. How is that the more cogent question? It sounds like it’s too late for that. The more cogent question is how we can prepare for and adapt to these future water crises.

    5. “Alex…how many future. water crises (flooding or drought) could have been avoided with just some acceptance to the science of climate change.”

      If only the Texans had built an ark..

    6. How can climate change have two contradictory effects at the same time?

      1. Here you go

        http://royalsociety.org/policy…..estion-13/

        Note that is from The Royal Society, one of the most respected science organizations in the world. Newsbsters isn’t.

        1. Perhaps next you can find a source that actually shows droughts, floods, hurricanes, intense storms, and tornadoes have actually increased in either frequency or strength?

          Because so far, the research done actually shows no evidence of that.

          But that doesn’t stop people like you from using every event even somewhat connected to nature to drum up fear over global warming.

        2. Here is a more detailed answer Mike, from Columbia University. brochetta would prefer you get your info from Newsbusters, but try something reputable first.

          1. That does not show an increased frequency in any of the weather phenomenons listed or attributed to global warming. It doesn’t make that claim. It says that there is an increased chance in some places (North America is specifically listed as an area they would expect to have less variability or change) based on changes in P-E. It’s explaining theory, and arguing that with changes in P-E it is likely (according to the models) extreme weather in some places will be increased.

            So, I ask again – show me a report that shows an actual increase in extreme weather patterns from in the past. This means actual data that shows there have been more hurricanes, or more tornadoes or more droughts.

            1. Yikes. Reread what Mike asked. My response was to him and it answered his question directly. At least science answered it.

              Now, go and read the first article. It explains how El Ni?o and the subsequent warmer temperatures have caused both flooding AND droughts. Fact. Not hard to put the two together and realize that global WARMING will do the same. Unless, of course, you get your science from Newsbusters.

              1. Not hard to put the two together and realize that global WARMING will do the same.

                EXCEPT IT’S NOT. Every idiot on the face of the earth understands the theory. For the love of Christ we’ve been listening to it for 30 years now. SHOW ME the increase in hurricane activity. SHOW me the increase in drought and floods. SHOW ME the increased hurricane intensities. SHOW ME where people have been moved due to rising sea levels. SHOW ME the temperature increase corresponding to increased CO2.

                At some point, the predictions require validation. Where is it?

                1. Science is telling you those higher level storms and droughts are coming. It’s like you saying show me those cancer cells in my lungs from smoking when you are 30. Science is telling they are coming.

                  Sea level has already started rising, as have temperatures.

                  1. Jackand Ace|6.13.15 @ 3:29PM|#
                    “Science is telling you those higher level storms and droughts are coming. It’s like you saying show me those cancer cells in my lungs from smoking when you are 30. Science is telling they are coming.”

                    Jack, you really got problems here.
                    First, you claim only scientists can speak on the matter, not Al Gore or any of the spokes-critters. So, Jack, are a scientist? If not, by your own claims, you are to be ignored.
                    Secondly, you have yet to show ONE prediction which has proven to be true. One, Jack; let’s see it.
                    Finally, your problem is that you are not real bright and hope to gain credence by pitching Malthusianism, since it seems so stylish!
                    BTW, I’m still waiting for the study on fracking and e-quakes to prove to be other than so much arm-waving.

                  2. Science is telling they are coming.

                    Horseshit. It’s been telling me it’s coming for 30 years and so far, not one of their predictions of doom had panned out, and there is NO sign things are even moving in that direction.

                    I don’t deny there has been a slight temperature increase. Whether it’s been CAUSED by AGW is debateable as for the last 17 years there has been nearly NO warming despite a continued increase in CO2. Their predictions have been shit.

              2. Jackand Ace|6.13.15 @ 2:55PM|#
                “[…]Not hard to put the two together and realize that global WARMING will do the same.[…]”

                Translated from stupid:
                ‘If you beleeve, you can see how these claims re-enforce those bleefs!’. With an added innuendo that you’re not as smart as the imbecile known as Jack.

    7. Here is the more cogent question, Alex…how many future water crises (flooding or drought) could have been avoided with just some acceptance to the science of climate change.

      Yes, if only those basterd had believed, and passed another carbon tax, Gaia would have rewarded CA with water.

      Jackass Lace is the modern equivalent of a witchdoctor throwing a virgin into a volcano to appease the fire god.

    8. Okay, the climate IS changing…..now what?

      1. Since science is telling you climate is changing primarily due to man

        http://whatweknow.aaas.org/get-the-facts/

        you do what you can to stop it. And that is to lmit carbon.

        1. Jackand Ace|6.13.15 @ 3:24PM|#
          “Since science is telling you climate is changing primarily due to man, you do what you can to stop it. And that is to lmit carbon.”

          Or, you adapt and don’t bother returning to the stone-age.
          Jack’s not real bright.

          1. Oh but he is on his own mind because he can throw the word SYUNSE in our faces even though he has no actual conception of what it means…

        2. No, the way to stop it is to trigger a nuclear winter, resulting in a climate paradise. Surely you have heard of the concept of nuclear winter.

    9. Drought and water shortages are not the same thing, dumbass.

      1. Read my original comment that started this brouhaha.

        A water crisis is a water crisis, no matter the origins.

        Right back at ya, ….dimwit.

        1. Jackand Ace|6.13.15 @ 6:05PM|#
          “Read my original comment that started this brouhaha.”
          Yes, it was totally irrelevant

          “A water crisis is a water crisis, no matter the origins.”
          I’m sure an imbecile like you thinks that means somthing

          “Right back at ya, ….dimwit.”
          Right back at ya, ….shitstain

      2. By the way, a drought isn’t a shortage of water? Try looking up the definition of drought…I will take back “dimwit” for you…I gave you too much credit.

        1. Jackand Ace|6.13.15 @ 7:34PM|#
          By the way, a drought isn’t a shortage of water? Try looking up the definition of drought…”
          Stupid comment defending stupid comment.

          “I will take back “dimwit” for you…I gave you too much credit.”
          Shitstain remains appropriate, but imbecilic should be added.

  3. If the Golden State can’t fix its water problems, Kotkin argues, many industries will have to leave the state

    Just a little incentive to get out before “the Big One”.

    1. Is that the high speed rail’s new nickname?

  4. You know when you guys argue with Tulpa, the only one who wins is Tulpa.

    1. When You Ride Alone, You Ride with Hitler..

    2. I don’t prescribe to omni-troll theories.

      1. That’s exactly the sort of thing I would expect you to say…TULPA!

      2. It’s the Unified Sock Theory (UST).

      3. “I don’t prescribe to omni-troll theories.”

        The Omni-troll “science” is settled…. Get on board.

      4. We all know that there can’t be more than one person who disagrees with Reasonoid libertarianism and says so.

  5. Could California’s Water Crisis Have Been Avoided?

    DAMN!?!?!?!?!

      1. It’s a Flying Spaghetti Monster Dam.

  6. Why doesn’t California just pass a law making it illegal to use water?

    1. I’m sure it’s in the works, in the lower house now. Deferments and waivers for the important groups will be the sticking points..

      1. Or stillsuits for all!!

  7. Did you stoooopid mammals already chase off the stumpy mutated under-bridge dweller? He seemed lively

    1. I always just ignore them. I find that works best.

  8. Rachel Dolezal picture of the day!

    http://www.weaselzippers.us/wp……54-PM.png

    1. Access denied

      1. Let’s try this again:

        Rachel Dolezal picture of the day!

        http://www.weaselzippers.us/22…..ng-no-lie/

          1. So she’s just a victim of crass marketing then?

  9. Rachel Dolezal has admitted to filing numerous police reports as the victim of threats and hate crimes. Police now dropping cases.

    http://www.krem.com/longform/n…../71043278/

    1. Obviously Hate Crimes are bullshit, but if the person thought she was black how does that change anything? Unless hate crimes aren’t about intention at all and are only created to give special protections to a group of people.

  10. Could one of our lalaland peeps explain to me what it is that has their state doing seemingly everything in its power to commit suicide? I mean, after oxygen water is the most essential substance for human life and CA flatly refuses to do anything to actually solve its problem. It passes sanity.

    1. They only know how to tax and regulate. Actually solving a problem is just beyond their ability or desire.

      1. It can’t be just that. The money being spent on the high-speed rail project alone could be spent to build desalination plants and aliviate the problem, but they are simply full speed ahead on nuts, and if they gentrify their entire state what will they do without the peons who do the actual work that makes it possible for them to survive? Robots?

    2. For the same reason that on all those forensic files the person who is going to kill their spouse because they can’t stand them or they have another lover on side thinks it’s a good idea to up their spouses life insurance right before offing them. They’re greedy and they’re stupid.

    3. You are seeing the end results of failed ideology. CA is the new Detroit. This is what happens when you adopt progressive policies and all of it was completely foreseeable.

      The sad part is, instead of saying you made your bed, lay in it, the rest of the country will get the bill to bail them out so they can double down on their insanity once again. CA is a massive shithole with mountains and nice weather. What a waste.

      1. There has to be more to it though. I live in Oregon, and it’s Progtopia up here. People say “The People’s Republic of Oregon” w/o irony, but even they manage to avoid outright destroying things. There seem to be a few special places of Progressive craziness where some confluence of factors combine to create a death spiral. I just wonder what the exact mix is so if my state starts down that path I can GTFO before it blows up.

        1. Even a horrible government can’t cause a water shortage in Oregan.

          1. It has actually been a pretty dry year for us but I see what you mean. I was actually thinking about the timber industry.

          2. That’s Orygun, you know…

          3. Even a horrible government can’t cause a water shortage in Oregan.

            Oh man, that had me rolling on the ground. Half the state is a desert and the rainfall pattern has little precipitation during the summer so just about everything dries out. Like D-w-W says, it’s been a dry year. About 80% of the state is already in a drought declaration.

            Even before this, water rights have been getting scarcer and scarcer. Not to mention the almost 15 year water dispute in Southern Oregon that’s shut off water to huge numbers of farms: http://www.opb.org/programs/or…..age_2.html

            1. Interesting. I think of Oregon, I think of lots of green, waterways, and waterfalls. I usually don’t think of Nevada.

        2. There has to be more to it though. I live in Oregon, and it’s Progtopia up here. People say “The People’s Republic of Oregon” w/o irony, but even they manage to avoid outright destroying things.

          (this is tongue in cheek and there is obviously not real evidence to support it)

          My theory:

          When I was a kid living back east, every failed businessman, every deadbeat whose wife booted him out, every stupid kid who wanted to become a movie star instead of having to work for a living packed up and moved to California. Hence, California ended up with a state full of losers.

          😉

          1. And add in the narcissists who went there to be ‘discovered’ and you have the making of cultural armageddon.

        3. There has to be more to it though. I live in Oregon, and it’s Progtopia up here. People say “The People’s Republic of Oregon” w/o irony, but even they manage to avoid outright destroying things.

          The difference is that CA is very wealthy and has a number of economic sectors that benefit from globalism to the point that the local economy is all but irrelevant to them.

          The combination has allowed the government of CA to brace a number of quasi-religious beliefs that damage the local economy.

  11. What we need is absolute privatization of all water supplies.

    1. Absolutely

      1. That would certainly help, but won’t ever happen since water is considered a ‘right’ and, therefore, must be controlled by TOP MEN. Of course, the politicians are the problems as they are overly influenced by big agriculture and the environmentalist movement which consume most of the water, divert it for the fisheries, or prevent development of reservoir projects. I hope it comes around to bite them in the ass at election time, but the citizenry seems so batshit crazy I have my doubts.

    2. Lemme guess, no one would ever die of thirst due to being unable to buy water because… PRIVATE CHARITY to the rescue! Da-da da-da!

      1. Don’t pay your municipal water bill for a few months and see how much water you continue to get from the government.

      2. lemme guess! Attention whore here for attention!

  12. “The libertarian case for Hilary Clinton”

  13. I find it interesting many people seem to think we (as a species) can actually keep things the way they are now. A hundred thousand years ago sea level was about 21 feet HIGHER than it is today. Most of that now missing water is sitting in ice and there is no reason to think that ice won’t melt again no matter what we do. Or, consider the Ross ice shelf in Antarctica. If it were to suddenly release like it is thought to have done in the past, sea level rise would be several meters (up to 5 meters if the whole of it went into the ocean) – immediately! And climate might not have anything to do with past (or future) releases, it could simply break off due to its mass overcoming the friction/rock keeping it in place.

    It is my opinion we should get good science and good cost/benefit analysis together and make sound decisions based on those inputs. What many might LIKE to have occur, that is, no sea-level change, is not an option, it never was. So we should decide on how best to handle it. If that means starting to resettle people away from existing shorelines to higher ground over the next 100 years then that’s probably what we ought to start doing. Of course, we can still work on making energy production more efficient and less polluting, but you can’t drive the cost of producing that energy above levels that makes making a living difficult either. (I focus on energy here as that seems to be where most focus and its cost is present in nearly everything.)

    1. “[…]If that means starting to resettle people away from existing shorelines to higher ground over the next 100 years then that’s probably what we ought to start doing.[…]”

      Pretty sure that will occur without one single community effort. Insurance companies will start raising water-front rates (unless the gov’t distorts THAT market), people will decide it’s time to move to lower-cost areas, except for those wealthy enough to, what, raise their houses?
      I don’t know and don’t care, but keep in mind that Chicago had a population of 4470 in 1840. By 1950, it was more than 3,600,000 without anyone telling people they had to move. That’s one city.
      The sort of ‘migration’ required here is well within what humanity commonly does in response to economic signals.

      1. I thought flood insurance was already captured by the .gov? It’s the whole reason we have so damn many people living so close to water as we do.

        1. Wasteland Wanderer|6.13.15 @ 9:44PM|#
          “I thought flood insurance was already captured by the .gov?”

          I know the Mississippi river valley is pretty much subsidized to support the Corps of Engineers, but I dunno about the coasts.
          If it is, we can forget that price signal telling us anything.

            1. So that market is now so distorted that assholes like Jack will get to claim “the market failed here!”

  14. So where was Jackass yesterday on Bailey’s post on the amount of sham research we are paying for, research that is far more basic than this fiasco.

    Oh wait, he wasn’t….fuck off Jack, you wouldn’t recognize science if it crawled in your bed and gave you a BJ while you were passed out. At least he wasn’t at Amherst (AFAIK).

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