Art, water and money

This detail from a 1922 drawing in the Los Angeles Times shows how nesting massive reservoirs in the peaks of the San Gabriel Mountains might check floods and impound water for Southern California. Nothing near the project depicted was realized. The graphic artist wasn’t a seismologist, never mind hydrologist. He drew what was described to him.

Nearly a century has passed but graphics depicting new water projects for Southern California remain almost as antique in their wishfulness. Last week, the Orange County Register produced a beautiful drawing showing how pumps might be placed in the Cadiz Valley in such a way that water supposedly “lost” to evaporation might be captured by sinking wells hundreds of feet below the floor of the Mojave Desert. 

Smell something? It’s Cadiz, Inc

PULITZER PRIZE-winning columnist Michael Hiltzik is one of a formidable team of Los Angeles Times reporters, including Frank Clifford, Tony Perry, Bettina Boxall and Duke Helfand, who have been all over the Cadiz, Inc ground water mining wheeze for the last ten years. Today, Hiltzik is back in the Times doing what he does best: Calling a stinker a stinker.

From his report:

People who say that nothing’s harder to get rid of than a bad penny must never have met Keith Brackpool.

 The British-born promoter, who has spent the last dozen years pushing a scheme to pump water to Southern California from beneath 35,000 acres his Cadiz Inc. owns in the Mojave Desert, just won’t go away.

 On the contrary, he continues to attract political sycophants happy to attest to his wisdom in the ways of water policy — while they accept campaign contributions and consulting fees from