Water rights remind me of land grants in that similar frantic profiteering kind of way. The legal maneuvering and gamesmanship over land in 19th century New Mexico is legendary. Multiple deals over many years gradually and nearly invisibly severed the resource from communities in the interest of privatization, subdivision and sale.
Though historic community ditches and acequias are exempt from such administration, the result of other water transfer profiteering and speculation in the end could be the same as the land grant outcome - incremental distancing and eventual alientation of
existing and future communities from what it takes to survive. Land. Water.