They say water is essential to life and is therefore a ‘human right’.
Food is essential to life too. We would all die without it. Do those people who believe water should be ‘free’ think the taxpayer should pick up their tab at the supermarket? Why not? What is so special about water that it should be free?
Which brings us to our next point. Nothing is free. The government doesn’t have any money. Everything in the state’s tax coffers come from one place: taxes on private industry. Civil servants, national school teachers, police, nurses: all paid for by the private sector. “But, but I pay my taxes too”, claims the civil servant. Yeah, you do. But it would make as much difference if you were paid slightly less by the state and had an official tax rate of zero.
They say they already pay for their water.
Of course you do. If you work in the private sector, at least. I can’t be sure of your value if you’re an unsackable drone working for the state.
It costs a lot of money to treat water. It costs a lot of money to deliver it to homes. That’s what the government is attempting to kickstart: an equitable and efficient system that has been neglected for too long.
The fairest way to operate a water system is by making people pay for what they use.
Would everyone prefer a flat fee for their electricity bill even if they suspected they were conscientious about their usage and that it would go up, thereby assisting with the bills of idiots who fall asleep with the electric heater on every night?
Of course not. So why water?
There are those afraid this is just another tax, and that it won’t be counterbalanced by a drop in income tax. It probably won’t, no. But then we do live in a country where people piss and moan about decreased funding to all sorts of useless shite, from quangos to failed artists.
And by the way, if you’re one of those people who says Ireland needs to emulate the ‘Nordic model’ then please bear in mind that up there they pay for their fuckin’ water.