We also know that the Supreme Court has been judicially active in recent years by granting Corporate America and the super-wealthy the right to spend as much as they want to manipulate our electoral and political processes, by linking political spending to free speech. Money is now speech, and so the wealthier you are the more powerful your First Amendment rights. You can now buy, or contribute towards, endless political billboards, political television commercials, deceptive messages, and other political campaign activities. In other words, you can now, more than ever, outspend the political speech of others.
What does it say about a culture when access to life-sustaining water is not a right, but gargantuan political spending is?
In other news, a billionaire in California bought some coastal property, blocked access to a public beach, and "hired guards to keep people out." Once again we see how the powers-that-be are willing (perhaps even eager) to block people from water--albeit in this case, recreational salt water.
New Deal policymakers wanted to give people greater access to water. For example, WPA workers improved beaches, cleaned waterways, built or improved hundreds of public pools, installed 16,000 miles of new water lines, and created hundreds of thousands of consumer water connections.
Today, instead of a New Deal attitude towards water, we have a ruthless, plutocratic attitude. An attitude that says, "I don't give a crap how poor you are, you're not getting any water," or "Not wealthy? Well, perhaps you shouldn't have access to the beach. Sorry." And things will only get worse, as the number of billionaires increase, as income & wealth inequality continues to balloon, and as billionaires spend more and more to buy politicians. For example, as of July 2013, "Only 2 percent of the (Chesapeake) bay has public access points for kayaks, canoes, fishing, bathing and other recreation." A retired economic development executive said, "I call it the world’s biggest gated community, the Chesapeake Bay. There are probably 100 beaches in Anne Arundel County, but they are private beaches." (See "U.S., groups working to open more public access to Chesapeake")
So, which do you prefer, the New Deal approach to water, or the plutocratic approach to water?