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Author Topic: The right to water
VanLuke
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posted 07 December 2005 10:25 AM      Profile for VanLuke     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Canada does not accept that there is a right to drinking water and sanitation.

Marie Gervais-Vidricaire, Canada's represenatative on the committee.

Canada was the only country to vote against a UN Resolution to appoint a Special Rapporteur to promote the right to water.

Uruguay, on the other hand, recently amended its Constitution (passed by a two thirds majority) to enshrine water as a human right to be delivered to all on a non-profit basis. (There were success stories in other countries as well, e.g. Bolivia, Argentina, Ghana, India, Brazil, the Philippines.)

http://www.rightlivelihood.org//background-info/the-right-to-water.pdf

quote:
...Clarke: Well, if privatisation is understood to mean the takeover of the delivery of drinking water by for-profit corporations, then we are opposed on several grounds. First, water is the essence of life on this planet, no living organism can survive without it. So, water belongs to all people, plants and animals. It is an important part of the commons, to be shared by all, and must not be exploited by a few for profit. Second, water is a fundamental human right and must be made universally available to all people....

http://www.rightlivelihood.org//interviews/barlow-and-clarke-2005-09-27.htm

Maude Barlow and Tony Clarke, Canada are to receive the Right Livelihood Award "for their exemplary and longstanding worldwide work for trade justice and the recognition of the fundamental human right to water", Dec9 2005.

http://www.rightlivelihood.org/news/event05.htm


The World Trade Organisation could decide next week that water will be controlled by for-profit corporations and sold in the open market to the highest bidder.


From: Vancouver BC | Registered: Oct 2004  |  IP: Logged
Sandy47
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posted 07 December 2005 10:51 AM      Profile for Sandy47     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
If water is for sale, life is for sale. The two are inseparable.
From: Southwest of Niagara - 43.0° N 81.2° W | Registered: Oct 2005  |  IP: Logged
solarpower
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posted 07 December 2005 11:47 AM      Profile for solarpower   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
water is already for sale, go to any shop and see. I refuse to support corporate takeover.
And my water bill has minimum charges for usage and removal even if i'm not around. I've yet to use the minimum amount.
Part of my bill pays for nothing.
I can see prepaid water meters in the future.

From: that which the creator created from | Registered: Dec 2004  |  IP: Logged
Sandy47
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posted 07 December 2005 11:56 AM      Profile for Sandy47     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by solarpower:
water is already for sale, go to any shop and see. I refuse to support corporate takeover.
And my water bill has minimum charges for usage and removal even if i'm not around. I've yet to use the minimum amount.
Part of my bill pays for nothing.
I can see prepaid water meters in the future.


There are charges for delivering water to your home and the upkeep on those delivery sysytems, but I think that's a far cry from not being able to get water period because you have no money and the entity that owns it is willing to watch you dehydrate because you're unable to pay.


From: Southwest of Niagara - 43.0° N 81.2° W | Registered: Oct 2005  |  IP: Logged
VanLuke
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posted 07 December 2005 12:16 PM      Profile for VanLuke     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by solarpower:
water is already for sale, go to any shop and see.

I guess you do not understand the issue. Nobody is talking about bottled drinking water.

quote:
I can see prepaid water meters in the future.

In this instance you *definitely do not understand*. Nobody is saying it should be free. Some are saying it should not be used to generate private profits.

Why not read the 3 pages of the linked document? It'll take less than 5 minutes.

Are you of the opinion that poor people who can't pay for a privatised water supply should just be left to die?

edited to add:

I did not bold my text; the server does that *sometimes*

[ 07 December 2005: Message edited by: VanLuke ]


From: Vancouver BC | Registered: Oct 2004  |  IP: Logged
VanLuke
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posted 07 December 2005 12:20 PM      Profile for VanLuke     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Sandy47:
If water is for sale, life is for sale. The two are inseparable.

As you well know this is happening with seeds and soon (if not already) with the results of stem cell research.

Just thought I state it explicitly.

Capitalism has a tendency to privatise the commons whenever possible.

Anything for a buck.


From: Vancouver BC | Registered: Oct 2004  |  IP: Logged
nuclearfreezone
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posted 07 December 2005 01:57 PM      Profile for nuclearfreezone     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Man cannot live without water nor can man live on water alone. We also need our daily bread.
My personal belief is that both food and water are an inherent human right and that no person/corporation/government has the right to with-hold either one. The rain falls on both the rich and the poor. The sun does the same. This earth and every stream that flows and all that is nourished by it belongs to all of us -- not just the capitalists.

From: B.C. | Registered: Apr 2005  |  IP: Logged
VanLuke
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posted 07 December 2005 02:20 PM      Profile for VanLuke     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
...not just the capitalists

I just wish they knew and understood this


From: Vancouver BC | Registered: Oct 2004  |  IP: Logged
solarpower
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posted 07 December 2005 02:25 PM      Profile for solarpower   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Someday we'll all be working for 5 rich guys who own everything.
From: that which the creator created from | Registered: Dec 2004  |  IP: Logged
marcella
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posted 07 December 2005 02:26 PM      Profile for marcella     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Thanks for posting those articles. I really appreciate it.
From: ottawa | Registered: Jun 2005  |  IP: Logged
VanLuke
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posted 07 December 2005 05:46 PM      Profile for VanLuke     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 

From: Vancouver BC | Registered: Oct 2004  |  IP: Logged
charlieM
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posted 07 December 2005 07:05 PM      Profile for charlieM     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
So, is the point Canada doesn't want to sign any agreement that will hurt it's economic situation in the future?
From: hamilton | Registered: Jul 2004  |  IP: Logged
Mr. Magoo
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posted 07 December 2005 07:14 PM      Profile for Mr. Magoo   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Someday we'll all be working for 5 rich guys who own everything.

That would make revolution super-easy!

"Hey... there they all are in the same limousine..."


From: ø¤°`°¤ø,¸_¸,ø¤°`°¤ø,¸_¸,ø¤°°¤ø,¸_¸,ø¤°°¤ø, | Registered: Dec 2002  |  IP: Logged
Toedancer
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posted 07 December 2005 07:23 PM      Profile for Toedancer     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Lord but Ms. Barlow is a humble soul, bless her.

Yet another important situation Canadians are kept in the dark about, thanks for posting this.

How does one go about forcing a referendum in this country?

A good question for the debate, but I wonder if anyone across the country posed it.


From: Ontario | Registered: Nov 2005  |  IP: Logged
VanLuke
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posted 07 December 2005 07:26 PM      Profile for VanLuke     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Mr. Magoo:

"Hey... there they all are in the same limousine..."[/QB]


To discuss a merger, no doubt.
C'est la lutte finale...


From: Vancouver BC | Registered: Oct 2004  |  IP: Logged
VanLuke
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posted 07 December 2005 07:28 PM      Profile for VanLuke     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by charlieM:
So, is the point Canada doesn't want to sign any agreement that will hurt it's economic situation in the future?

Or maybe to make the water problems in native communities easier on Ottawa?

Because opposing it would makes it easier to sell our water.

[ 07 December 2005: Message edited by: VanLuke ]


From: Vancouver BC | Registered: Oct 2004  |  IP: Logged
Stephen Gordon
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posted 07 December 2005 07:36 PM      Profile for Stephen Gordon        Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Sandy47:
If water is for sale, life is for sale. The two are inseparable.

quote:

There are charges for delivering water to your home and the upkeep on those delivery sysytems, but I think that's a far cry from not being able to get water period because you have no money and the entity that owns it is willing to watch you dehydrate because you're unable to pay.

How is water different from food, clothing and shelter?


From: . | Registered: Oct 2003  |  IP: Logged
rockerbiff
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posted 07 December 2005 07:43 PM      Profile for rockerbiff   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Intresting to see this ever gets to become a right, since we have totally accepted bottled water in North America.

Do you think we will have the right to breathe fresh air when they start putting air in bottles also ?

Coming soon to an automated dispenser near you....

[ 07 December 2005: Message edited by: rockerbiff ]


From: Republic of East Van | Registered: May 2005  |  IP: Logged
VanLuke
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posted 07 December 2005 07:45 PM      Profile for VanLuke     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Stephen Gordon:

How is water different from food, clothing and shelter?


Lets declare them all necesseties then! Goodie, goodie, goodie.

You can survive without shelter (in Vancouver), you can scrounge food from the dumpster or grow a bit in a hidden corner in Stanley Park. You can *survive* running around naked (in Vancouver), at least until you get picked up by the cops.

On a more serious note, it requires a large scale to treat and distribute. Does that not make it different.

Are you for the privatisation of the water supply? What would be the benefits for the community? Should we also privatise the collection and treatment of sewage? (Those who can't pay will just have to breathe the stench, as in Victorian England and many Third World countries)Medical care? All educational facilites? The army? (Parts of the largest army in the world are already privatised) All prisons?

Is there anything that is better left in the care of the community or is the wonderful -not so free- market always best?

[ 07 December 2005: Message edited by: VanLuke ]


From: Vancouver BC | Registered: Oct 2004  |  IP: Logged
VanLuke
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posted 07 December 2005 07:48 PM      Profile for VanLuke     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by rockerbiff:
Intresting to see this ever gets to become a right, since we are totally accepted bottled water in North America.

Do you think we will have the right to breathe fresh air when they start putting air in bottles also ?

Coming soon to an automated dispenser near you....


I'm beginning to believe the people who say the the greens in their present incarnation are a right wing outfit.

Btw bottled water is for affluent Professors and other middle/upper class people. How many poor people have you seen lately carrying around their bottle of water?


From: Vancouver BC | Registered: Oct 2004  |  IP: Logged
Aristotleded24
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posted 07 December 2005 08:00 PM      Profile for Aristotleded24   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Bottled water isn't even that much better than tapwater:

quote:
Inside the Bottle provides a vivid and disturbing portrayal of how four big companies Nestlé, PepsiCo, Coca-Cola and Danone --- dominate the bottled water industry today. It examines key issues of public concern about their operations, including how they:

pay little or next to nothing for the water they take from rural springs or public water systems;
turn ‘water’ into ‘water’ through elaborate treatment processes;

produce a product that is not necessarily safer than, nor as regulated as, tap water;

package it in plastic bottles made of toxic chemicals that are environmentally destructive;

market it to an unsuspecting public as ‘pure, healthy, safe drinking water.’

sell it at prices that are hundreds and even thousands of times more costly than ordinary tap water.



From: Winnipeg | Registered: May 2005  |  IP: Logged
ronb
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posted 07 December 2005 08:09 PM      Profile for ronb     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
There's that whole controversy about the estrogen they use to soften the plastic water bottles that most of the bottled watercomes in.
From: gone | Registered: Jan 2002  |  IP: Logged
VanLuke
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posted 07 December 2005 09:31 PM      Profile for VanLuke     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Do you mean 'estrogen' as in hormones?

edited to add:

Silly me. I could have just googled instead of asking you. I'm still shaking my head about this insane world.

quote:
Plastics--including a plasticizer called phthalate, used in making flexible plastic for bottles of Coke, Pepsi, Sprite, Evian water, and so forth--are known to have estrogenic effects. Many commonly used pesticides have estrogenlike actions on human cells. Estrogenic chemicals ooze out of the synthetic lacquer that lines the inside of soup cans. These chemicals and others find their way into sewage and enter the rivers and lakes.

http://www.boingboing.net/2002/07/10/plastic_water_bottle.html

http://www.worldandi.com/public/2001/October/sax.html

Something not totally unrelated:

On Decouverte (RC) next Sunday they'll have a segment on the falling ratio of boys to girsl in the Sarnia district. There used to be (and in most places still is) slightly more boys born than girls. In Sarnia IIRC there are now almost twice as many girls born than boys. (There was a short preview last Sunday)

It's a world gone insane and they call this progress.

[ 07 December 2005: Message edited by: VanLuke ]


From: Vancouver BC | Registered: Oct 2004  |  IP: Logged
Aristotleded24
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posted 08 December 2005 11:52 AM      Profile for Aristotleded24   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by VanLuke:
As you well know this is happening with seeds and soon (if not already) with the results of stem cell research.

Not to drift, but it's for this reason that I dislike the way the stem cell research debate is framed. It's framed as the religious fundie whackos who want to stand in the way of science. Should we do something simply because it's good for science? My opposition to stem cell research comes from a (liberal) Christian viewpoint, but there are a variety of reasons to be concerned about the ethics of the research as well.

[ 08 December 2005: Message edited by: Aristotleded24 ]


From: Winnipeg | Registered: May 2005  |  IP: Logged
West Coast Greeny
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posted 08 December 2005 12:22 PM      Profile for West Coast Greeny     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by VanLuke:

You can *survive* running around naked (in Vancouver), at least until you get picked up by the cops.

[ 07 December 2005: Message edited by: VanLuke ]


You forgot about wreck beach, but its pretty damn cold in BC right now, too much shrinkage for a pub(l)ic place.

Seriously:

Man needs three things to survive: Food, water, and sleep. A right to water is more basic than democratic rights (which were/are flagrently violated in Kasachewan). Insane how easily we take our water supply for granted, we'll see how this discussion pans out in oh, 30 years.


From: Ewe of eh. | Registered: Sep 2004  |  IP: Logged
VanLuke
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posted 08 December 2005 01:13 PM      Profile for VanLuke     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
I also do not know *how* people survive even in the relatively mild climate of Vancouver without a roof over their heads.

I do not know if I could do it.

I was being a bit facetious because of Stephen's question why this would be different from food, clothing and shelter.

It's really quite something to ask this question as he knows full well that water distribution is what is called a 'natural monopoly' and that there are significant barriers to entry not existing in the production of food, clothing and even shelter (the most expensive to enter of the three hre mentioned).

Just a lot of (implicit) praise for the "free" market, of which every student who has taken Economics 101 knows (so did Adam Smith and so does he) that it does not, indeed cannot, exist because of the many explicit assumptions underlying the model.

Britain in the middle of the 19th century was the country that came closest to a "free" market based, i.e. laissez faire, economy. Doing my thesis I read (among other things) all the issues of several newspapers from 1840 (i.e. before the most severe depression of the 19th century hit) to 1843 (when it was over) in addition to parliamentary reports, political pamphlets by the Anti-Corn Law League (the "mouthpiece" of the emerging and about to triumph bourgeosie), publications of church groups and other sources.

It was ugly!

Even though it was three decades ago I can't forget some of the things, e.g. father and son pulling a barge -like draught animals- on a canal to avoid checking into the (brutal) poorhouse, people killing themselves out of despair, people eating weeds to survive etc etc.

Is this where the free market advocates want us to go back to because on average we're all (supposed to be) better off?


Economics = ideology?


From: Vancouver BC | Registered: Oct 2004  |  IP: Logged

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