Flint water crisis | What's Left

by Editors (What's Left) last modified 2016-02-02T09:33:23-04:00
Much of the news around Flint, Michigan's water issues are focusing on the terrible government management of their water systems, the slow response to the lead crisis affecting the city’s citizens, and the donations being made by private bottled-water companies.

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Unfortunately, less covered is the negative role of the private sector and water profiteers in the crisis.

The story of the right-wing mayor, racist anti-democratic policies of state Republicans, a focus on cost-cutting above all and reliance on private sector consultants to drive public water policy is what got them into this mess. The solution, which will have to be a public one, should not be lead by those following those same underlying policies.

As the Flint experience shows, access to clean water needs to be a democratic human right. The only way to effectively make water a right is to exclude the private sector profit makers from operating water utility systems, and for working people to demand action from their politicians. The truth is that water, like democracy, does not come cheap and it cannot come from a corporate board room.

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