The design of optimal hydrometric networks is a moving target. Networks get optimized (i.e. reduced to the ability to deliver the least amount of hydrological information that can still avert catastrophic failure) and then decision-makers adapt to the reduced information. Then another round of budget cuts comes along, and network managers are asked to further eliminate any redundancy of information in the network, and decision-makers then make further adaptations. With each iteration of budget cuts, the methods for network optimization become more sophisticated, and decision-makers get more used to making decisions without useful information. Will the cycle of network attrition ever stop?