Posturing for the credulous

A must-read by L.A. Times heavyweight analyzt Michael Hiltzik on South-Valley Republicans’ attempted water grab:

“The measure is opposed by Gov. Jerry Brown, state water officials and Democrats in both houses of Congress. It’s nothing but a sop to credulous farm voters in the districts of Reps. David Valadao, Kevin McCarthy and Devin Nunes, its sponsors. It doesn’t create a single drop of water, despite ridiculous claims that it will “solve California’s water crisis” (Nunes),and abrogates jealously guarded states’ rights over water allocations to boot.

“Yet while this posturing was going on in Washington, the drought in California was growing worse and solutions more elusive.”

Actually, Hiltzik’s piece is more than a rebuke of the Republican demagogues and their parochial constituents. It mentions the Monterey Agreement and the Resnicks and a key case going to the Supreme Court. So the piece is a good primmer.

“The most important factor in meeting the crisis is a recognition that California has made some bad choices in the past that would not be made today, knowing what we know about the likely trajectory of statewide water supply,” Hiltzik writes. “We would plant fewer permanent crops like nut trees, and make fewer commitments of firm water to housing project developers.

“Some of these decisions will have to be undone in the near term, some will be undone by the implacable economics of residential development and agriculture, and some we will have to live with for decades more. Fatuous political posturing to give some groups of users priority over others is a waste of time, and one thing we have less of every dry day is time.”

The number one priority of south-Valley Republicans has become clear: get re-elected. If that means pointless posturing before “credulous” constituents while solving nothing, so be it. A strain of contemporary Republicanism is all about solving nothing while tossing red meet to the masses. Probably the farmers down there pounded the table in approval when Devin Nunes calles the smelt “stupid.” If only pounding the table solved the problem.

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    Michael Fitzgerald

    Mike Fitzgerald is The Record’s award-winning metro columnist. His column runs in the paper three times a week. Born in San Francisco, he was raised in Stockton. His column covers diverse beats including, sometimes, the offbeat. Read Full
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