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Dirty Water

category national | rights, freedoms and repression | opinion/analysis author Sunday April 15, 2007 03:41author by Seán Ryan Report this post to the editors

When water is finally privatised we will thank our masters for it
Get used to it!!
Get used to it!!

I've had water on my mind for quite some time now. Recently I co-researched and co-authored an article on water that examined incoming water charges and incoming water privatisation: Tapped Out - Water Charges, By The Meter:- http://www.indymedia.ie/article/79249

But there's more to the story than sorting out ownership questions. Water is an essential ingredient for life to exist. Sceintists who speak about the possibilities of extraterrestrial life, reckon that to begin the search, one should first look for planets that have water on them, to pinpoint possible sites that might contain life. In fact sceintists researching data from the Hubble Telescope may have recently found one such planet:-
http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/nation/la-sci-b...=true

It strikes me as ironic that we recognise the importance of water, yet we act as if it were a mere commodity, to be done with as we will.

The people of Galway have had their water supply poisoned recently. There were weeks of screaming by the political folks - such as warnings to boil water before use. The blame game was played too. Eventually the probable source of contamination was located (no thanks to the authorities). The ramifications being that it may be six months before the water supply is considered safe for consumption. In the mean time, the powers that be in Galway have arranged a deal with a private company whereby the good citizens can buy one bottle of water and get one free. Tourists are to be included in this deal too. And a request has been sent to the government, to get together and decide on whether to supply social welfare recipients with vouchers, so that they might get their water for free. http://www.irishhealth.com/?level=4&id=11317 It needs pointing out that some families are paying €5 per day or more for their water. The good old, much publicised, polluter pays initiave has yet to be discussed or thought of. Oh, and don't let's mention the fact that in 2005, there were dire warnings that Galway was "very high risk" for contamination from the cryptosporidium parasite, not to mention that up to one in five water supplies in Ireland are at risk from this very same parasite:- http://www.friendsoftheirishenvironment.net/papers/arti...der=0

One should also note that Ireland is top of the charts, with regard to the European Water Framework Directive. Apparently we are ahead of everyone else with regard to implementing it:- http://www.rpsgroup.com/hsed/newsireland.asp?N=478&seci...&fl=1

Despite us supposedly being ahead of everyone else in implementing the directive, the EU is threatening to fine the Irish governemnt over the debacle in Galway. http://www.irishhealth.com/?level=4&id=11196 and http://www.friendsoftheirishenvironment.net/papers/arti...der=0

However, Galway is far from being the end of the story. In Limerick, the County Council have been given sixty days to clean up the contaminated water supply at Ballingarry which has been polluted by nitrates, or face the Courts. The EPA has told the Council to clean up after LCC issued a warning for pregnant women and children under two, not to drink water, as the nitrate level is above what is considered safe. They've been given the sixty days to clean up the supply despite the fact that they've not even identified the source of the contamination:-
http://www.irishexaminer.com/irishexaminer/pages/story....1.asp

Of course, LCC is well on the ball with regard to water metering. From next September, all of Limerick's pubs will be included amongst the roughly 2500 commercial premises that will have to pay €1.06 for every cubic metre that flows from their taps. They will also have to pay a yearly fee to cover the Council's costs. Laing O’Rourke, a private company has beaten all the other contenders and has been awarded a €3.2 million contract to install the meters. Laing O’Rourke have warned that water supplies might be discoloured for a short time after meters are installed:- http://constructireland.ie/news.php?artID=3943 It seems to me, that the pubs of Limerick will pass on the cost of their water directly to their customers - water charges and a form of privatisation by stealth.

Nobody could mention water and Limerick without mentioning the Bleach Lough scandal. This is where LCC were trying to force the residents of Pallaskenry and Kildimo to accept one of Ireland's most polluted rivers, the river Deel, as their water supply. In turn LCC intended to take the Springwater supply that these citizens have and give it to one of Ireland's biggest polluters, Alcan, in the Foynes Estuary: Bleach Lough Court Case: "Water is not a commercial product like any other, but rather, a heritage":- http://www.indymedia.ie/article/76583 and Bleach Lough Campaigners gone to Brussels:-
http://www.indymedia.ie/article/81213 (to mention but two). It seems as if LCC have finally gotten their evil way and have connected the dirty water to the supply.

Let's not forget the Good folks in Sligo. Water meters were being forced on them too, but they kicked up a stink about it and many's a public official tucked a mangey tail between their legs and ran for the hills. This dispute is ongoing and I pray that it becomes nationwide. Check out Jim O'Sullivan's excellent article on Indymedia: Water privatisation has begun, starting in Sligo:- http://www.indymedia.ie/article/79663

The story is similar all over the Green Isle. Poor quality water (I'm being generous), charges and privatisation on the way, and lots of officials, especially in the department of the environment practicing self congratulation on the great job their doing.

The funny thing about biological water contamination, is that it is mostly caused by viri. When this is contrasted with the fact that chlorine is added to our drinking water to remove biologicals, but is almost wholly a waste of money and effort with regard to killing or removing biologicals the size of viri, one might get the sneaking suspicion, that once water is fully privatised, we might thank our government for it. In Dublin alone, DCC spend €223,198 per anum on chlorine, in its various forms. God knows how much it costs to dump it into the water supply. It aint a healthy substance to ingest according to most experts who express an opinion.

Allow me to finish on a point about Galway. As has been pointed out already, it could take six months to sort out the water problem and it could take tens of millions of Euros. Not one official has said that chlorine will no longer be used as a biological contaminant remover. In other words, they'll clean the water but have made no immediate or long term plans to stop it all happening again. This is despite the fact, that biologicals can be effectively, cheaply and safely removed, as a recent innovation has shown:- http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/02/0702280822...2.htm

author by Tadhg - Shell to Seapublication date Sun Apr 15, 2007 16:19author email dublinshelltosea at gmail dot comauthor address c/0 134 Phibsborough Road Dublin 7author phone 0876181620Report this post to the editors

Last year we brought samples of water from the taps in Erris to the government offices at the Customs House and asked the people who work there (including the EPA) to have a drink when they were leaving for lunch. http://www.indymedia.ie/article/75743

Related Link: http://www.indymedia.ie/article/75743
author by Seán Ryanpublication date Sun Apr 15, 2007 19:01author address author phone Report this post to the editors

It seems as if the second link I gave to an LA Times article about the possibility of water being found on a distant planet is acting up. The access code for the link changes on a daily basis and if you put in an old version, the LA Times looks for you to sign up. Screw that!!

Here's an alternative and indeed a better link:- http://www.dailytech.com/article.aspx?newsid=6894

Apologies to the folks at S2S. I meant to speak about the heavy aluminium content in the drinking water and about the fact that the authorities are ignoring it and hoping it will go away. When I was putting the article together I was compiling from a large database of info on the subject matter and I forgot to add the S2S issue. I know the issue will not go away. Keep up the great work.

I suppose with the recent trend of the EPA threatening to take LCC and the Council in Galway to court over pollution, thanks to new powers they recently received, it might mean that the powers in Mayo could be next. Maybe a nicely drafted letter to the EPA, reminding them of the demonstration last year and pointing out that nothing has been done, could possibly jog memories and facilitate things?

author by Seán Ryanpublication date Sun Apr 15, 2007 19:58author address author phone Report this post to the editors

The good folks in Ennis Co. Clare are fuming. They're wondering why bottled water is being subsidised in Galway and not in Ennis. An article has appeared on this issue in yesterday's Irish Independant that outlines this story:- http://www.unison.ie/irish_independent/stories.php3?ca=...15509

For folks who don't want to subscribe to the Independant allow me to quote the following paragraph:

"Residents in Ennis who have been paying for bottled water since a precautionary boil noticed was issued in 2004, are fuming at the introduction of a subsided water scheme for householders in Galway."

They want to know why Galway got the subsidised bottled water and they didn't. That's easy to answer. Tourism. Welfare of citizens in this country is not an issue - period.

author by Seán Ryanpublication date Sun Apr 15, 2007 20:12author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Forgot to include Kilkenny in the initial article too. All that aluminium must finally be having an effect.

Water will be rationed (turned off?) in many areas of Kilkenny between the hours of 10pm until 7am, from April the 16th (tomorrow) to April 20th (supposedly).

More bottled water anyone?

http://www.kilkennycoco.ie/eng/Public_Notices/MooncoinW....html

author by Seán Ryanpublication date Sun Apr 15, 2007 20:30author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Another article in the papers today, one from the Westmeath Independent, has the PD's dissing my good friends at DCC, for wanting to pipe water from Lough Ree to Dublin.

The PD's have studied DCC's proposal and commissioned a study of it. The results of this study described DCC's proposal as suicidal for the River Shannon and its lakes and tributaries and that it should be abandoned immediately.

Jaysus if the PD's have a problem with it, then it must be dire indeed.

Here's a quote from this interesting article for those who don't have a subscription: "A study of these summary points has led me to conclude that it is absolutely absurd and bizarre for Dublin City Council to pursue such a policy. It is now our duty and responsibility to convince and persuade Dublin City Council and the Minister for the Environment to abandon this plan with immediate effect and to pursue the other very viable routes open to them. It we fail in this quest then the future of Lough Ree and the Shannon basins will - sooner rather than later - be a mirror image of the destruction of the Dead Sea..."

http://www.unison.ie/westmeath_independent/stories.php3...15507

It might be noted that in the article above, if one surfs to the first link in it and goes down the comments in it, that I give a link to something written by my dear friend Cllr. Dermot Lacey, who's writing on this very topic.

author by Seán Ryanpublication date Sun Apr 15, 2007 21:12author address author phone Report this post to the editors

It seems that what Mr. Lacey has said about piping in water from the Shannon to Dublin, has been irrevocably removed from the Internet. Not even a cache of the document remains. That's what I call efficient. Luckilly, I have a copy of this document somewhere and will post it when I find it (or at least the relevent bits of it - it's kinda long and repetitive). For now allow me to reprint the quote from it that I originally used in the other article:

The quote was taken from "Flagship Project – Water Supply to the Greater Dublin Area"

"Adequate supply of water to the growing populations of the Dublin Region and the Greater Dublin Area will be a major issue in coming years. A new water source will have to be sought to meet this demand and it is considered that the Shannon River may be the only adequate source of water to the Greater Dublin Area. It is important that the NDP takes account of the GDA’s need to design and construct the infrastructure needed to draw additional water from the Shannon into the Region.'"

author by Tadhgpublication date Sun Apr 15, 2007 21:36author email dublinshelltosea at gmail dot comauthor address Shell to Sea C/O 134 Phibsborough Road Dublin 7author phone Report this post to the editors

Seán,

"Maybe a nicely drafted letter to the EPA, reminding them of the demonstration last year and pointing out that nothing has been done, could possibly jog memories and facilitate things?"

that's a great idea!

Will you let us know what reply you get? Use our address if you want, or if you want me to sign it and send it - mail me your draft to our gmail address.

Thanks a million

Related Link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zx7YQNDcSl0
author by Aquamanpublication date Sun Apr 15, 2007 22:34author address author phone Report this post to the editors

"Let's not forget the Good folks in Sligo. Water meters were being forced on them too, but they kicked up a stink about it and many's a public official tucked a mangey tail between their legs and ran for the hills. This dispute is ongoing and I pray that it becomes nationwide. Check out Jim O'Sullivan's excellent article on Indymedia: Water privatisation has begun, starting in Sligo"

Water has not been privatised in Sligo or anywhere else in the 26 Counties. You are merely repeating incorrect data which was contained in your previous article. I am not sure if you are just dont understand the directives and legislation passed or whether you are continuing this line just for an argument but in any case you have provided no evidence of privatisation.

The EU Directive which was transposed into law does not allow for privatisation. No one other than you, Jim Sullivan and a couple of others think that water has been privatised. The SP, SF, SWP, LP, WSM, CIL, ISN, none of them accept that water has been privatised.

However the current legislation before the DAal might allow for it. Dick Rioche & Bertie swear that it wont. But it should be opposed.

In Sligo water was metered for farmers and businesspeople, factories. The previous campaign against water rates never opposed rates for business and farmers. No group on the left supports the idea that factories, farmers and publicans should get water for free. It goes against all ideas of cinservation: if businesspeople get water for free then why should they use it sparingly?

author by Stuartpublication date Sun Apr 15, 2007 23:43author address author phone Report this post to the editors

The last figures I recall, before the final commissioning of Ringaskiddy and Dublin Bay Waste Water plants, were that:

* 40% of raw sewage passes untreated into water courses;
* 56% of sewage receives basic filtration of solids and sanitary products;
* 4% of sewage is fully treated.

The position is probably broadly similar after commissioning due to population growth and due to the level of small-scale raw discharge throughout rural areas. In every period of heavy rainfall even the newest plants are "flushing excess intake", i.e discharging untreated raw sewage because they are unable to cope with rainfall in addition. We also now have the possibility of cholera and other tropical or effectively eradicated disease to add to E-coli, salmonella and campylobacter.

Dr Paul McKeown raises the horrendous issue of treatment-resistant E-coli in the vicinity of hospitals which (unlike piggeries) need neither register their outfalls nor meet any specific standard of discharge, thus discharging hospital-selected antibiotic-resistant varieties of disease into the watercourse.

Shortly prior to the Ringaskiddy plant opening, winter vomiting bug (small roundform virus, SRV) genetically identical to an outbreak in the Mercy Hospital in Cork caused a widespread outbreak in Hong Kong residents who had eaten imported oysters farmed adjacent to Cobh Harbour.

author by Aquamanpublication date Mon Apr 16, 2007 09:49author address author phone Report this post to the editors

"It seems that what Mr. Lacey has said about piping in water from the Shannon to Dublin, has been irrevocably removed from the Internet. Not even a cache of the document remains. That's what I call efficient."

Why are you gratuously introducing Mr Lacey into this discussion? Do you have to have a go at him on every thread you contribute to? If there is no link then why mention it? Thats known as non-news.

It is truly bizarre for you to imply that Mr Lacey somehow has such power over the internet that he can remove all traces of an article. I doubt if even the NSA would be capable of that. But I suppose when people believe that Flouride is added to the watersupply to poison and control peoples mind, then they will believe anything.

author by rainpublication date Mon Apr 16, 2007 12:05author address author phone Report this post to the editors

My neighbour is a medium-sized dairy farmer in Sligo.
He is currently paying 80.euro per day for water.
That's 29,000 euro each year - extra!
This may put him out of business. He is attempting to drill a well.

author by J O'Sullivan - Community Alliance-Sligopublication date Mon Apr 16, 2007 13:15author address author phone Report this post to the editors

We are back again with a so called socialist engaging in word play while the neo-con policy is driven home under his nose.

Aquaman, hardly original, states that,
"Water has not been privatised in Sligo"

Lets look at the facts,

Water meters are being installed, are being read and bills being sent out and money collected by a Private company. Please note Aquaman, BILLS are PAID DIRECTLY TO THE PRIVATE COMPANY and not to the Council. In the event of non-payment, connection will be severed by the PRIVATE COMPANY. If you want to kid yourself that given that scenario that water in Sligo is not under the control of a private company, then sleep on.

And more importantly, the using of a private company in Sligo is only the fore-runner and will allow an infrastructure to be put in place to facilitate full blown private ownership of our water. And just for the record Aquaman, because these are issues that you from time to time comment on, the HSE is designed to do the same job with the Health Service. We are now a State that is in the full grip of neo-con ideology and it is depressing that people who one would expect to be able to recognise what is happening and help to stop it, has actually become a cheerleader by creating the false impression that what is happening is not a clear intended policy to privatise.

The bottom line is that if the current policy is allowed to continue unchallanged, there can be no doubt, given the current government policy, where it will end. Tony O'Reilly and friends will own the water along with the oil and the gas and any other natural resource that he wants in return for sizeable political donations.

author by Aquamanpublication date Mon Apr 16, 2007 13:36author address author phone Report this post to the editors

I am not interested in the fact that farmers, factories and publicans are being charged more. They have always paid water charges/rates. The idea of of a factory not being charged for its use of millions of litres per day is obscene. The company involved is acting as a contractor for the council. It does not own the water supply. (I oppose this outsourcing of work though. Public sector workers should be involved in extracting more money from the private sector.) Why do you reckon that the Left groups do not believe that water has been privatised? Perhaps they are all wrong and you are right.

Ordinary households are not charged for water. The previous anti water charges campaign only opposed domestic charges it never believed that farmers or businesspeople should get water for free. None of the left organisations are in favour of free water for business. To do so would be an attack on the environment. Businesses should be charged steeply progessive prices to force them to cut back.

I am opposed to privatisation, but I am not going to tilt against windmills. The legislation currently before the Dail does contain the possibility of privatisation, thats what we must fght.

I dont think that privatisation can be fought by supporting farmers, business owners or factory owners. Its in their interest for privatisation to take place so that they can get their hands on whatt was formerly public sector jobs. The farming organisations never stop attacking the public sector and calling for public sector agencies to be closed down.

author by Jim O'Sullivan - Community Alliance-Sligopublication date Mon Apr 16, 2007 18:31author address author phone Report this post to the editors

We had all this under another psuedonym and clearly you are listening. You say,

"I am not interested in the fact that farmers, factories and publicans are being charged more. They have always paid water charges/rates. The idea of of a factory not being charged for its use of millions of litres per day is obscene."

However and once again, these charges are simply passed on to you and me, their customers. It is silly for you or anyone else to suggest that "they", the companies, carry the costs involved. You above all should know well that businesses and farmers are not charities. With regard to the factory using "millions of litres per. day", what point is being made here? If the company is producing a needed product, so what? If on the otherhand a company is wasting water then clearly that should not be allowed. The metering of water should have as it's primary objective the detection and prevention of waste and not as is intended, the raising of revenue.

You then go on with,

"The company involved is acting as a contractor for the council. It does not own the water supply. (I oppose this outsourcing of work though. Public sector workers should be involved in extracting more money from the private sector.)"

In my last post I clearly outlined what is the reality of the situation. The private company reads meters, sends out bills, collects the money and will cut off water supply in the event of non-payment.
They control the water supply. The existing infrastructure was bought and paid for by all citizens over the years. But what is happening here is that this supply infrastructure has been handed over to a private company to make profit.

You then ask,
"Why do you reckon that the Left groups do not believe that water has been privatised? Perhaps they are all wrong and you are right."

You'll have to ask the left groups you refer to, however rthe point is that the process of privatising water has begun. Anybody who is looking at the antics of the present government and cannot see that water is being set up for privtisation, a la Tony Blair, is either blind or indifferent.

Again a lack of understanding as to what is the point,

" Businesses should be charged steeply progessive prices to force them to cut back."

Wrong, business should have water monitored and be heavily penalised for waste and in a manner that will not allow them to pass on the penalty to their customers. Business in general should be subject to a progressive tax system that ensures that they pay tax in accordance with earnings and thereby provide the finances for central government to supply, free at the point of delivery, all vital servcies.

And at least some acknowledgement of the danger,

"I am opposed to privatisation, but I am not going to tilt against windmills. The legislation currently before the Dail does contain the possibility of privatisation, thats what we must fight."

The way this government works is to first sell the lie that local government cannot provide servcies, then a structure is put in place with the appearance that the local authority is still in charge, and then to move to total privatisation in time. A good example of which you will be very familiar is the way that refuse collection moved from being a service provided by the local authority to being fully privatised over a few years in a small number of steps. Therefore if we are prudent, we must challange the government as soon as we can identify the beginning of the process.

Oh and by the way, the company that is involved in Sligo is Veolia. Look up their record worldwide and whether you agree with privatisation or not, we should refuse to have this company anywhere near our vital services. So perhaps rather then wasting your time creating smart ass arguements to attack those that are trying to raise genuine concerns about what is happening, you should concentrate on getting this crowd off our backs.
Your heart is either in the right place or it is not. You have now been shown the real enemy, go fight.

author by Aquamanpublication date Tue Apr 17, 2007 11:23author address author phone Report this post to the editors

"However and once again, these charges are simply passed on to you and me, their customers. It is silly for you or anyone else to suggest that "they", the companies, carry the costs involved. "

I dont. But companies have always paid charges for water. To give them water free now would not result in a drop in prices but in a rise in profits for them. The net result would also be more taxes on PAYE workers to make up the shortfall.

"With regard to the factory using "millions of litres per. day", what point is being made here? If the company is producing a needed product, so what?"

If the company is getting the water for free then why would they be bothered about how much they use? At present companies pay for water. You want to give them a present, a massive transfer of resources from the PAYE sector to the rich.

"In my last post I clearly outlined what is the reality of the situation. The private company reads meters, sends out bills, collects the money and will cut off water supply in the event of non-payment.
They control the water supply. The existing infrastructure was bought and paid for by all citizens over the years. But what is happening here is that this supply infrastructure has been handed over to a private company to make profit."

They are contractors for the council. I am not bothered if factories or businesses have their water cut off because they wont pay.

"You'll have to ask the left groups you refer to, however rthe point is that the process of privatising water has begun. Anybody who is looking at the antics of the present government and cannot see that water is being set up for privtisation, a la Tony Blair, is either blind or indifferent."

The point I make is that water has not been privatised. None of the left parties or even FG believe it to be the case. Opposing privatisation is not advanced by believeing in fairy tales.

". So perhaps rather then wasting your time creating smart ass arguements to attack those that are trying to raise genuine concerns about what is happening, you should concentrate on getting this crowd off our backs. "

I disagree with you, that does not make my arguments smart ass. I am opposed to privatiation but I am not going to support a campaign to get anyone off the backs of businesspeople.

"Your heart is either in the right place or it is not. You have now been shown the real enemy, go fight."

You are a strange leftist if you are fighting on behalf of farmers, pub owners and factory owners. They are the real enemy.

I will fight for an Ireland where farmers, pub owners and factory owners are squeezed until the pips squeak. An Ireland where social housing is built without opposition from supposed Community Alliances, where facilities for young offenders can be built with out fake leftists opposing them.

You fight for your farmers, pub owners, factory owners.

I'll stand by PAYE workers, the unemployed, those on other state benefits.

Its two different sides of a barricade.

author by Jim O'Sullivan - Community Alliance-Sligopublication date Tue Apr 17, 2007 11:49author address author phone Report this post to the editors

It is like have a discussion with a sponge.
Once again, companies are not paying for water, you are. They simply pass the charges on. Think.

"If the company is getting the water for free then why would they be bothered about how much they use?"

You are obviuosly not even reading the posts and are too anxious to get back to deliver a few insults. I repeat, all water usage should be monitored for waste. read again.

you then say,
"They are contractors for the council. I am not bothered if factories or businesses have their water cut off because they wont pay."

Even if job losses resulted. Some caring sicialist!!!

You continue,

"The point I make is that water has not been privatised. None of the left parties or even FG believe it to be the case. Opposing privatisation is not advanced by believeing in fairy tales"

Once again read the post. The concern is that the process to privatise has started.

You finish.

"I'll stand by PAYE workers, the unemployed, those on other state benefits."

And what a wonderful job you have done: refuse collection fully privatised with no waiver, The longest housing waiting list in the country, planning and development firmly in the hands of the business interests, to mention just a few your achievements.

There sure is "two different sides of a barricade" , it's time you got off the fence and starting doing instead of just saying and grow up and stop wasting everyones time with your personalised attacks on people that you fear.

author by Aquamanpublication date Tue Apr 17, 2007 12:04author address author phone Report this post to the editors

"It is like have a discussion with a sponge. "

That is just insulting and does you no credit.

"Once again, companies are not paying for water, you are. They simply pass the charges on. Think."

But if they got it for free they would not reduce their prices. PAYE workers woulkd end up paying for the shortfall in taxes.

"You are obviuosly not even reading the posts and are too anxious to get back to deliver a few insults. I repeat, all water usage should be monitored for waste. read again. "

I am, I just disagree with you. You are being inconsistent. On the one hand you object to metering but now you support metering.

""They are contractors for the council. I am not bothered if factories or businesses have their water cut off because they wont pay."

Even if job losses resulted. Some caring sicialist!!!""

Sorry, but I am not in the business of guilt trips. Many companies would suggest that they could employ more people if they didnt have to pay taxes. But you claim that you want to see companies pay more taxes. Are you therefore condemning people to life on the dole.

"Once again read the post. The concern is that the process to privatise has started."

I read the post and I still disagree with you. You seem to be one of these people who think their opinions are laws of nature.

"And what a wonderful job you have done: refuse collection fully privatised with no waiver, "

How am I personally responsible for this? In any case many councils still have their own refuse collection depts.

"The longest housing waiting list in the country, planning and development firmly in the hands of the business interests, to mention just a few your achievements."

Explain how I am responsible for this.

"There sure is "two different sides of a barricade" , it's time you got off the fence and starting doing instead of just saying and grow up and stop wasting everyones time with your personalised attacks on people that you fear."

I dont fear you and there is nothing personalised in my comments.

You have made it clear that you wish to give a big present to farmers, pub owners, factory owners by supplying them with free water. This will be paid for by PAYE workers. Its quite clear which side of the barricades you are on.

author by Jim O'Sullivan - Community Alliance-Sligopublication date Tue Apr 17, 2007 12:32author address author phone Report this post to the editors

You are still not listening,
You repeat,

"But if they got it for free (water) they would not reduce their prices. PAYE workers woulkd end up paying for the shortfall in taxes."

Companies should be paying tax through a progressive system unlike at present where they pay very littlle tax relatively speaking. Through a progressive tax sytem the government should then supply all vital services.

More mistakes, you state,

" You are being inconsistent. On the one hand you object to metering but now you support metering."

Wrong, anybody with concerns for the environment must agree with monitoring so as to control waste. You are making things up.

More misleading stuff,

"Sorry, but I am not in the business of guilt trips. Many companies would suggest that they could employ more people if they didnt have to pay taxes. But you claim that you want to see companies pay more taxes. Are you therefore condemning people to life on the dole."

Tax should be paid through a progressive tax system whereby the more you make the more you pay.
If you don't know what is meant by a progressive tax system let me know, I will explain in detail for you

You then deflect responsibility for the privatised refuse services and the long housing lists etc. Are you not part of the establishment here is Sligo? Are you saying you can do nothing to change things?

And the usual spin to finish, never let the truth get in the way of a good insult,

"You have made it clear that you wish to give a big present to farmers, pub owners, factory owners by supplying them with free water. This will be paid for by PAYE workers. Its quite clear which side of the barricades you are on."

Untrue. Read my post and everything else that I have written on this issue and all above my real name too.

author by Aquamanpublication date Tue Apr 17, 2007 13:20author address author phone Report this post to the editors

"You are still not listening,"

I am. I just disagree with you. why cant you accept that? Do you think your opinions are laws of nature?

"Companies should be paying tax through a progressive system unlike at present where they pay very littlle tax relatively speaking. Through a progressive tax sytem the government should then supply all vital services."

Agreed. But why should they stop paying one of the few taxes they pay at the moment? If they get away with this they wont pay extra taxes. Unless you think a socialist government is going to be elected next month.

"More mistakes, "

Not mistakes. I am merely disagreeing with you.

"Wrong, anybody with concerns for the environment must agree with monitoring so as to control waste. You are making things up."

I am not making things up. You clearly opposed metering at the outset.

"More misleading stuff,"

Again its a matter of duffering opinions. Why must you see your opinions as unchallengable truths?

"Tax should be paid through a progressive tax system whereby the more you make the more you pay.
If you don't know what is meant by a progressive tax system let me know, I will explain in detail for you"

I understand it. You are avoiding the points I made.

"You then deflect responsibility for the privatised refuse services and the long housing lists etc. Are you not part of the establishment here is Sligo? Are you saying you can do nothing to change things?"

I am not part of the establishment in Sligo, nor do I even live there. I fear paranoia has gotten the better of you.

"And the usual spin to finish, never let the truth get in the way of a good insult,"

Not an insult, just an interpetation of what you wrote.

"Untrue. Read my post and everything else that I have written on this issue and all above my real name too."

The only way that businesses would pay more in corporation tax would be if a socialist government was elected. You are calling for free water for businesses right now. Therefore you wish to give a present to to business people.

There is nothing in what you have written which suggests you are on the side of ordinary people.

author by Jim O'Sullivan - Community Alliance-Sligopublication date Tue Apr 17, 2007 13:49author address author phone Report this post to the editors


There is a great danger here that people reading this post will take their eye off the ball and allow water charges/privatisation to occur by stealth. The purpose of the post is to alert people that there is very good reason to believe that the government has decided to privatise all utilities and to do so on a rolling basis. The present discussion is merely word play and deflecting attention from the real issue.

Community Alliance urges all voters to ensure that when canvassed they demand a simple assurance from the party concerned that if part of the next government they,

1) will not introduce domestic water charges
2) will not privatise any aspect of the provision of water.

And Aquaman, If you want to hide your true identity, you should be more careful with specfic word use. And just to mark your card for you, Sligo Borough Council may already have started the process of privatising the provision of social housing. Just in case you missed that too.

Finally you state, "You clearly opposed metering at the outset"
Will you point out where so that I can make a correction.

author by Goblinpublication date Tue Apr 17, 2007 14:07author address author phone Report this post to the editors

This Aquaman has a very similar debate style to the same string of pseudonyms who use the same rubbish and naive argument on the very thread Sean linked to.

http://www.indymedia.ie/article/79663

Its obvious this 'aquaman' is the same guy. Just hymn sheet rhetoric and a breathtaking lack of understanding of how business is conducted.

If you wish to sleep walk into privatisation aquaman go ahead. But I will keep my eyes open thank you very much.

I am sick and tired of spinning bluffers like you either covering up ineptitude or genuinely ignorant as to the agenda of this FF/PD Government. And your counter acusations may work on the less fastidious variety who bleat and chew grass but other than them your fooling no-one with your versed falsification.

Carry on Jim and Sean. More power to you.

author by Aquamanpublication date Tue Apr 17, 2007 14:16author address author phone Report this post to the editors

"Community Alliance urges all voters to ensure that when canvassed they demand a simple assurance from the party concerned that if part of the next government they,

1) will not introduce domestic water charges
2) will not privatise any aspect of the provision of water."

I fully support the above.

"And Aquaman, If you want to hide your true identity, you should be more careful with specfic word use. And just to mark your card for you, Sligo Borough Council may already have started the process of privatising the provision of social housing. Just in case you missed that too."

You've got it wrong. But regarding social housing, does your Community Alliance oppose social housing in certain areas? Regarding the privatisation of social housing I would certainly oppose it.

"Finally you state, "You clearly opposed metering at the outset"
Will you point out where so that I can make a correction."

In your previous article you opposed metering.

author by Aquamanpublication date Tue Apr 17, 2007 14:24author address author phone Report this post to the editors

I have made it clear that I am opposed to privatisation. Now Jim & Sean believe that privatisation has already taken place and is authorised under the EU Directive Act. This opinion is not shared by any of the Dail parties, nor do the SWP, CIL, WP or WSM hold with this opinion.

Its possible that SF, LP, SP, GP, SWP, CIL, WP & WSM are all wrong and that Sean and Jim are correct.

But I reckon its the present water bill before the Dail which holds the danger of privatisation despite all of Dick Roches & Berties claims to the contrary. Thats the bill which must be opposed.

I am honestly not pouring forth any falsifications. I certainly wish to see the end of this terrible government.

author by Goblinpublication date Tue Apr 17, 2007 15:00author address author phone Report this post to the editors

"I am honestly not pouring forth any falsifications. I certainly wish to see the end of this terrible government."

Glad to hear it. Now will you stop attacking others who seek the same thing. Unless this is a personal thing that I've stumbled into in which case I will stumble out just as quickly.

The privatisation process has begun. The installation of water meters is now obligatory on all new houses. To what end?

Privatisation.

It is the driving force behind the right-wing idealogy that is central to FF/PD thinking. Something the SP, SF, SWP, Labour and ISN are very aware of. Talk to the boys in finglas, drop into Thomas Street or pop over to Ballyfermot sometime and ask the guys and gals what they think the government is up to.
Nobody but nobody assumes this water bill is cast shut and that the threat of privatisation has been removed except you.

A little hydrophobia as you put it will hurt no-one. Raising peoples awareness on this issue is important and helpful so why do you shoot the messenger?

Unless councillors in Sligo have a very different idea of what FF/PD want then it doesnt sound unreasonable to assume that Pirvatisation is the ultimate goal and all methods both covert and overt will be used to achieve it. First it will be water conservation then it will be to amass revenue to fix or update the antiquated system then the government will claim private companies can do it cheaper. Voila Privatisation. Same MO used worldwide.

BTW for someone who is not from the area you seem to have an intimate knowledge of what goes on there. Which leads me to conclude that this is personal.

You didnt attack Sean Ryan, But immediately took acception to his link to Jims O'Sullivans Article and then attacked him.

That to me smacks of a personal gripe and is not helpful. This will become a major issue in the not too distant future and you can bet your ass the Privateers will not be bickering over semantics.

author by Goblinpublication date Tue Apr 17, 2007 15:07author address author phone Report this post to the editors

"Nobody but nobody assumes this water bill is cast shut and that the threat of privatisation has been removed except you."

Before you jump on it, I meant 'EU Directive Act' not the 'water bill' that is in committee stage.

author by Aquamanpublication date Tue Apr 17, 2007 15:51author address author phone Report this post to the editors

"Glad to hear it. Now will you stop attacking others who seek the same thing. Unless this is a personal thing that I've stumbled into in which case I will stumble out just as quickly."

I am merely disagreeing with people. Not everyone has the same opinion on the way forward.

"The privatisation process has begun. The installation of water meters is now obligatory on all new houses. To what end? "

Provision of meters does not automatically lead to privatisation. In any case I oppose it. How many times do I have to write that?

"It is the driving force behind the right-wing idealogy that is central to FF/PD thinking. Something the SP, SF, SWP, Labour and ISN are very aware of. Talk to the boys in finglas, drop into Thomas Street or pop over to Ballyfermot sometime and ask the guys and gals what they think the government is up to."

I agree with you. Where do you think there is a difference of opinion? I oppose this government. Please read what I actually wrote. But SF, SP, LP ewc do not believe that privatisation has taken place. Sean & Jim do.

"Nobody but nobody assumes this water bill is cast shut and that the threat of privatisation has been removed except you."

Read what I wrote. I wrote that the present bill contains the danger of privatisation. You are misrepresenting what I wrote.

"A little hydrophobia as you put it will hurt no-one. Raising peoples awareness on this issue is important and helpful so why do you shoot the messenger?"

I dont. I merely point out that the messengers are putting out incorrect information. I also oppose free water for factory owners etc.

"Unless councillors in Sligo have a very different idea of what FF/PD want then it doesnt sound unreasonable to assume that Pirvatisation is the ultimate goal and all methods both covert and overt will be used to achieve it. "

That may well be the case but I oppose privatisation at any level. What I wont do is support free water for the private sector. PAYE tax payers will end up paying for it.

"First it will be water conservation then it will be to amass revenue to fix or update the antiquated system then the government will claim private companies can do it cheaper. Voila Privatisation. Same MO used worldwide."

I agree with you. No problem. I dont think that the work in Sligo should have been contracted out, it should be carried out by Council employees.

I am opposed to any conservation trickery being used to bring in water rates. Unfortunately the Greens use this old trick, some of them honestly, some of them cynically.

"BTW for someone who is not from the area you seem to have an intimate knowledge of what goes on there. Which leads me to conclude that this is personal. You didnt attack Sean Ryan, But immediately took acception to his link to Jims O'Sullivans Article and then attacked him.That to me smacks of a personal gripe and is not helpful. "

I'm not from Sligo, I disagree with both Sean & Jim on political points. Nothing personal.

"This will become a major issue in the not too distant future and you can bet your ass the Privateers will not be bickering over semantics."

Disagreeing over free water for the private sector is more than just semantics.

author by Goblinpublication date Tue Apr 17, 2007 16:55author address author phone Report this post to the editors

“"Nobody but nobody assumes this water bill is cast shut and that the threat of privatisation has been removed except you."

Read what I wrote. I wrote that the present bill contains the danger of privatisation. You are misrepresenting what I wrote.”

I did read what you wrote. That’s why I immediately re-posted with the following correction

Type-O
“"Nobody but nobody assumes this water bill is cast shut and that the threat of privatisation has been removed except you."

Before you jump on it, I meant 'EU Directive Act' not the 'water bill' that is in committee stage.”

I believe the EU directive like all EU directive has a privatization bias.
Seems you are the one not reading the posts.

And you are the being misrepresentative. Sean and Jim never stated the Privatisation process had happened. They said it had begun.

You are spinning.

The issue of supplying big business with free water is a semantic because is was spun from what is a socialist ‘policy’ position of ‘free water for all at point of access’ You are spinning again.
This is in line with the concept of free health for all at point of access which is another socialist policy position.

And your assertion that the PAYE worker will pay for this is false and a bit of ‘scaremongering’ on your behalf. 1st year business students know that that all costs of production are passed on to the consumer.
If you don’t understand that, I’m sorry there is absolutely no point in debating you on any of this.

author by Seán Ryanpublication date Tue Apr 17, 2007 17:29author address author phone Report this post to the editors

I haven't bothered to read the full same circular arguments that occur on http://www.indymedia.ie/article/79249 life's too short.

I do want to clear some things up.

I quoted exactly what Dermot Lacey wrote. It was and is news. It is related to the fact that even the PD's are calling what Dermot has titled as a 'FLAGSHIP' project, an act of lunacy. The link worked when it was originally posted. The fact that the link no longer works, is not relevant to either the fact that this is newsworthy or to the fact that Dermot Lacey did indeed write this. Also, I only mention Dermot Lacey where and when he crops up in what I write. To suggest I drag him into every thread I contribute to is quite farcical and indeed it is a downright lie.

I have never once suggested that fluoride is an agent used in mind control. To suggest otherwise is another lie. I have said fluoride is a grade 2 poison (which it is) and that I reckon it should not be added to our water supply. I have written extensively to back this view up, and have never once relied on saying that it was used to control the population.

I have said on many occasions that privatisation is a process. In the other thread (link given above) and indeed in the blurb on this piece I say "When water is finally privatised we will thank our masters for it." To say that I have said that privatisation has been accomplished and is a done deal, is another fabrication and indeed another blatant lie. The process of privatisation is occurring, if one wishes to contradict what I've said, it should at least be obvious, that it would be logical and honest to at least argue with what I've said, rather than imagining a fabrication to knock down.

"The SP, SF, SWP, LP, WSM, CIL, ISN, none of them accept that water has been privatised."

I have not said that water has been privatised. See my last point. I note that none of these groups have argued against my second paragraph in the above article either (where I say that water may have been found on a distant planet). Does this mean that the above groups disagree with this point?

I note that no comment from any of these groups has been posted to suggest that any of these groups disagree with my point. I.e. that water is being privatised. Indeed if one surfs the link I gave above, it can be seen far down in the comments that the Labour Party suddenly became afraid that water being privatised in Ireland. I may add that the article written by Elaine and myself preceded the Labour Party's announcement of their fears by a considerable time gap.

I think it fair to suggest that aquaman (his current guise) has suggested on many occasions that it is only a few (myself and some others) who believe in this idea of privatisation. Inferring that a minority cannot have a viable opinion. Whilst at the same time only offering his own opinion. I'll not comment on what I think about this stance as it would not be fit for publication.

Finally, folks in Galway and Ennis are being forced to buy their water from a private company. Those in Ennis have been forced to do so since 2004. The folks in Galway have only been forced in the last month or so, but may have to continue to do so for another six months or so. God only knows how much longer the poor folks in Ennis will be expected to do so. In the Case of Galway, the council are subsidising this farce. Buying water from a company that officially owns the water, and having no alternative to do otherwise, is indeed an example of where water in Ireland has been privatised and indeed, this is and was forced on citizens of this country. And what are we doing about it?

We're here having a nonsensical and circular debate (and I use the term debate very lightly) on pure semantics and strawmen.

author by Aquamanpublication date Tue Apr 17, 2007 17:42author address author phone Report this post to the editors

"I believe the EU directive like all EU directive has a privatization bias.
Seems you are the one not reading the posts. "

I read them. You are entitled to believe that all EU legislation has a privatisation bias, you may be right, but the EU directive does not privatise water in my humble opinion.

"And you are the being misrepresentative. Sean and Jim never stated the Privatisation process had happened. They said it had begun."

There position has constantly changed. I suggest you look back at their previous articles.

"The issue of supplying big business with free water is a semantic because is was spun from what is a socialist ‘policy’ position of ‘free water for all at point of access’ You are spinning again.
This is in line with the concept of free health for all at point of access which is another socialist policy position."

Eh no actually. You wont find very many socialists arguing that Cement Roadstone should be supplied with water for free. It might be your opinion that supplying free water to the private sector is a socialist policy position but in my opinion its not.

Can you identify any socialist organisations who believe that water and other utilities should be delivered free to the private sector?

"And your assertion that the PAYE worker will pay for this is false and a bit of ‘scaremongering’ on your behalf. 1st year business students know that that all costs of production are passed on to the consumer. "

But companies have always paid for water. A sixth class pupil could tell you that businesses will not lower their prices if they get water for free. If theres a a drop of income of hundreds of million of euros to local authorities then you can be sure that the PAYE taxpayer will fit the bill as usual.

"If you don’t understand that, I’m sorry there is absolutely no point in debating you on any of this."

You should learn to be more tolerant. Accept that yours is not the only opinion. I might be wrong, you might be wrong.

author by Jim O'Sullivan - Community Alliance-Sligopublication date Tue Apr 17, 2007 17:54author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Aquaman
Still cannot find where I supposedly opposed metering. If metering is the best way to monitor and prevent waste then we should have no difficulty with that.

Regarding "does your Community Alliance oppose social housing in certain areas?" , the answer is no. If you want to know what Community Alliance policy is, I can send you our submissions on the matter In a nutshell, we support the right of all citizens to housing that meets their need provided in a totally integrated manner. We utterly oppose segragation along the lines of wealth and have called for the ending of the building on one dimensional estates regardless of which end of the socio-economic ladder intended. We submitt that all applications for the building of houses must have within the development accommodation to cater for all sections of society so as to deliver a community living together in an inclusive and cohesion manner. If you wish to discuss this further, I can post our last submission to a different thread where it can be dealt with seperately. Let me know you preference.

author by Aquamanpublication date Tue Apr 17, 2007 18:10author address author phone Report this post to the editors

No, I only enquired regarding social housing because a poster on the previous thread stated that your alliance had opposed social housing and facilities for young offenders. I take your word for it.

I took it from your original article that you opposed all metering but if you say you are in favour of it for conservation purposes then I also accept that. I would oppose any metering in domestic dwellings.

author by Goblinpublication date Tue Apr 17, 2007 18:28author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Not wanting to debate with some one who twists and turns and spins is not a sign of intolerance Aquaman. More Spin or is your understanding of the word as limited as your business acumen??? Honestly if you think privatising water for business will not increase the price of their products your not playing with the full deck. Neither is it intolerant not to want to debate with someone who has no intention of reaching a consensus but has his argument fuelled by ego and one-upmanship.

This is a complex issue and you do not do it justice by condensing it to a few sensationalised soundbytes and empty rhetoric.

I read the other thread and you used the exact same arguments almost ver batem and claimed they where representative of the thinking of ALL the left.
Nonsense. What a huge assumption for you to make.
Your arrogance is astounding.

You are also in deep denial if you think privatisation of water in not happening. You are now begining to sound like an apologist.

But enough.

I detect a a gripe here. One that is directed at Jim O Sullivan for some bizarre reason. I missed the quote Jim provided above which expanded your attacks into 'housing'. WTF???

Seeing as I am genuinely not from Sligo I have no clue what the hell that is all about nor do I wish to.
But I am convinced you are somebody local to the area and consequently only posted when you saw Jim O Sullivans name.

Another reason why I have no wish to debate you because you are also a Liar.

author by Aquamanpublication date Tue Apr 17, 2007 18:36author address author phone Report this post to the editors

I humbly suggest that you are misinterpeting my position.

I oppose privatisation.

I oppose the present government.

I oppose charges for domestic water supply.

Farmers, pub owners, factory owners have always paid water rates. I support the continuation of these charges.

I am not from Sligo. I dont live in Sligo.

I just have a difference of opinion with Jim and Sean. Thats all. They have their opinions, I have mine. I might be wrong, they might be wrong.

author by Goblinpublication date Tue Apr 17, 2007 19:06author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Then we are almost unanimous in our thinking.

The only difference is how we think Business should pay for their water. You think through a rate (which is flat and not representative of the amount of water the Business has actually used) I think through hitting their taxes. Which will force them to conserve the resourse and fund the 'free to all at point of access' aspiration. (And yes, it is an aspiration, a lot of things need to change to facilitate it but it wont stop me supporting any effort to that end)

I accept your position is one of pragmatism, but i feel there are issues on the horizon where the continuation of a flat rate will only help the arguement put forward by psuedo-conservationists and make the metering argument palatable to the public.

Unlike you I beleive that these meters represent the first stages of privatisation because they enable a body (be it Private or a local authority) to issue a charge as per unit of consumption. And will be farmed out in the fullness of time to the more 'cost effective' private sector.

The issue of meters being installed on all new houses is the most worrying of all. For this increases the likelihood of a domestic charge being introduced, again under the guise of conservation. And we all know and agree on the consequences of that.

author by FRANCIS - GALWEGIANpublication date Sat Apr 21, 2007 14:43author address author phone Report this post to the editors

I would like to comment that if Galway put the €11million, that was used for an unnessesary 'face-lift' on Eyre Square into revamping the Waterworks at Terryland instead, we may not be in this situation today. Also, it is now a known fact that the water authorities knew about this problem for years and kept quiet! We're hearing about the city all the time but let us not forget parts of the 'infected area' of the county like Athenry, Moycullen etc, who are also hugely inconvenienced by this problem.

author by Seán Ryanpublication date Sat Apr 28, 2007 04:36author address author phone Report this post to the editors

On Wendesday evening 25th April, the Water Services Bill passed through all stages in the Dáil.

Dick Roche subsequently denied that this bill was an attempt to provide for the privatisation of Ireland's water services.
http://www.rte.ie/news/2007/0426/water.html

I'll sleep much better now.

author by Seán Ryanpublication date Sat Apr 28, 2007 05:10author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Chambers Ireland, a business lobby group has called for all water users to be charged and for a water meter to be put in every home.

Chambers Ireland is Ireland's largest business organisation with 59 member chambers and representing more than 12,000 businesses all around the country.

The blurb from the news story on their website reads: "Chambers Ireland has today (25/04/2007) called for Government to take water quality seriously as a business competitiveness issue as the Water Services Bill passes through the Dáil. Director of Policy Seán Murphy, said “While we welcome recent measures to address issues in Galway, Government must realise that we are on the cusp of a serious national problem..."

Director of policy, Seán Murphy said "A good quality clean water supply is one of the crucial issues in determining a biotechnology FDI investment decision into Ireland. We must take it seriously and ensure that the user pays principle is applied fairly."

Mr. Murphy also said "Water meters must be installed in all homes to ensure that domestic water is fully paid for either by the end user or by the Government that refuses to introduce water charges for private users. We urge the Department to make provision for a water meter to become an integral part of planning permission in all future domestic houses."

Just in case anyone missed the point, Mr. Murphy also said "Local authorities should be allowed to fully implement the user pays principle and charge all users of water and producers of waste water. In the case of domestic residences, a reasonable threshold should be set above which users will be charged on a metered basis. The cost of all usage underneath this threshold should be paid for by a separate, transparent central government fund."
http://www.chambers.ie/article.php?newsid=453

Meanwhile, Beverly Flynn, an independant candidate for Mayo in the upcoming election is set to put farmers and the public at each other's throats. In an interview in Friday's Mayo Advertiser she has called the charges that are going to be introduced against farmers next year unfair, saying that these charges will subsidise the water supply infrastructure for private households, who pay nothing. http://www.mayoadvertiser.com/index.php?aid=1910

Divide, privatise and conquer.

author by Fred Johnstonpublication date Sun Apr 29, 2007 03:32author email sylfredcar at iolfree dot ieauthor address author phone Report this post to the editors

It is odd that Galway City Council are being asked to vote on an additional grant of €160,000 to Galway Arts Festival when spending a few bob on Galway's water plant would have prevented the situation the city's now in. How is the Arts Festival more important than the water situation?

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