Heavy Rainfall Is Easing California's Drought Crisis. A Free Market in Water Would Actually Solve the Problem.

Q&A with Reed Watson of the Property and Environment Research Center


California officials lifted the most extreme drought restrictions this week thanks to above average rainfall in the Northern part of the state. Yet 70 percent of the Golden State is still experiencing severe drought conditions.

In a recent interview with Reason TV, Reed Watson of the Property and Environment Research Center (PERC) offered a policy solution to the drought problem: better defined property rights and a robust market in water.

Click below to watch the interview and here for the original writeup.

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  1. Don’t listen to the libertarians, people! As as soon as they achieve their precious free market over water, they’ll replace it all with DHMO, a known poison used by the petrochemical industry.

    1. Plants need electrolites.

      1. It’s what makes plants grow.

      2. Plants crave it.

  2. Who will buy water for the environment? How do markets protect water resources for the poor, for the future? Who owns the rainfall or the moisture in clouds before it falls? How do we prevent a Howard Hunt or an Enron from gaming the market for a vital resource?

    Market fundamentalists have all the answers, but not enough questions.

    1. Who will buy water for the environment?

      Nobody, because toads and moss and lichen have bad credit. It’s like Harlem. Black people have never experienced rain. That’s how white supremacy works.

    2. How do markets protect water resources for the poor, for the future?

      You do realize that was the entire reason William Mulholland and other California water engineers, as well as the Bureau of Reclamation, built all those reservoirs in the early 20th century–to preserve water resources for future generations? Too bad David Brower and the environmentalists put bait fish over people.

    3. Market deniers have a lot of questions but very little curiosity when it comes to finding answers.

    4. “How do we prevent a Howard Hunt or an Enron from gaming the market for a vital resource?”
      My goodness! A BP fastball!
      Simple: We DON’T let the government be the buyer, like they were during the ‘energy crises’. IOWs, we actually allow the market to work, which is terrifying to juvenile statists, right, juvenile statist?

      “Market fundamentalists have all the answers, but not enough questions.”
      Juvenile statists always have answers: Let mommy do it!
      Fuck off, slaver.

    5. How do we prevent a Howard Hunt or an Enron the government from gaming the market for a vital resource?

      Since that’s what’s actually happening…

  3. Allocation of scarce resources is Economics 101. While the free market is obviously better at allocating resources than the government, that’s not the whole problem. When was the last time California built a reservoir?

    1. You’re comment about a gendered state retaining water has been noted and forwarded to the relevant state authorities.

      1. Your assumption that the word “California” still acknowledges the gender xe was born with had also been noted, and reported.
        Xe now prefers the pronunciation “Californi-eye”

    2. Allocation of scarce resources is Economics 101.

      And ignoring that is Politics 101. Said Thomas Sowell:

      The first lesson of economics is scarcity: There is never enough of anything to satisfy all those who want it. The first lesson of politics is to disregard the first lesson of economics.

  4. Absent government, you hardly ever have a real shortage of a thing – just a shortage of the thing at a price you’d like to pay. There’s a severe shortage of 2 cent loaves of bread, $5 loaves of bread you can buy all day long. It takes government to make sure bread is unavailable at any price.

    1. There’s a severe shortage of 2 cent loaves of bread

      Yeah, but if you don’t mind eating out of a dumpster there’s plenty of totally free bread available.

  5. Bernie will fix this.

    1. Please God, let Bernie fix this!

    2. Of course he will. After all, water rationing is s good thing, because it means there is water.

      1. You’re paying (or have paid) for that bread with your pride.

  6. Bernie will fix this.

  7. Bernie will fix this.

  8. Bernie will fix this.

  9. Bernie will fix this.

  10. Bernie will fix this.

  11. Bernie will fix this.

  12. Bernie will fix this.

  13. Bernie will fix this.

  14. Bernie will fix this.

  15. Bernie will fix this.

  16. Bernie will fix this.

  17. Bernie will fix this.

  18. Bernie will fix this.

    1. Quincy is caught in a Bern-Loop.

      1. yup.

        10 BAD_POLICY
        20 GOTO 30
        40 GOTO 10

        1. WOW, haven’t seen basic in a minute.

          1. I like the use of goto to advance to the next line. It’s very formal, like a top hat for code.

            1. Once I programmed a VLIW processor, in which every instruction specified the address of the next instruction. If the next instruction was a sequential one (most of the time), then the encoded address was one higher than the currently executing instruction.

              The above BASIC code would have looked something like

              10 BAD_POLICY; GOTO 20
              20 BLAME REPUBLICANS; GOTO 10

            2. But if the GOTO is necessary, why is there no GOTO to the GOTO?

              And if its not necessary, they why waste the memory? This is *Basic* after all, when I used that shit we were still using *actual cassette tapes* (as in the ones you would record music on and play in your Walkman) to store the code.

              No fancy schmancy magnetic memory unless you were uber-rich.

              But, that’s just more proof of how Americans are worse off today than their parents.

  19. Quincy, can Bernie fix this?
    Also, Victor Hanson has had some good thoughts about this on PJ Media (trigger warning: He’s a conservative, not a libertarian, and not pro-open borders). Do your own googling, you have no right to force me to provide links for you.

    1. The preferred nomenclature is “enact my labor.” As smug as it is ungrammatical.

      1. You leave my grammar out of this; she was a wonderful woman!

        1. Yeah, don’t cross the GILF gulf.

          1. Well, buddy, I’m 47. There are a few GILFs in my life…

  20. OK, let’s allow the government has some role here.
    So we have moonbeam, who has been sucking at the public teat pretty much continuously since the mid ’70s, and exercising some power at the state level. And the ’70s was the time of the last CA ‘big drought’.
    Whatever the CA population was at the time, it has pretty much doubled since then. Whatever water storage facilities we had at that time, it hasn’t changed one damn bit.
    Nope. Moonbeam got the Dill Act passed to guarantee the CA voters are on the hook for billions in un-funded benes. He’s been working night and day for some damn choo-choo.
    But water? Uh, he’s happy to institute permanent restrictions; the asshole loves a hair shirt.
    Hey, J2Hess! See how well the government does? Fuck off, slaver.

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