“When you see that trading is done, not by consent, but by compulsion–when you see that in order to produce, you need to obtain permission from men who produce nothing–when you see that money is flowing to those who deal, not in goods, but in favors–when you see that men get richer by graft and by pull than by work, and your laws don’t protect you against them, but protect them against you–when you see corruption being rewarded and honesty becoming a self-sacrifice–you may know that your society is doomed.” ~ Ayn Rand
It never ceases to amaze me that for some reason, what politicians decide, and what governments do, is somehow considered what’s best for the people—instead of looking at the market response (you know, the actions of the people) to make those determinations.
When something is as crazy popular and quickly growing such as Uber, that might just be because it’s a GOOD thing, and perhaps something that the vast majority of people actually WANT.
But then we have all these politicians and governing bodies scrambling to shut it down, or regulate it, or place limitations on it, whatever—such as was recently announced by New York Mayer de Blasio—in direct opposition to the market response—and they honestly think they’re doing what’s best for the people? That’s weird—because I always thought the market was the people…?
One quick look at the following video demonstrates many reasons why Uber does, in fact, benefit the people and improve the marketplace—and how Mayor de Blasio’s efforts to stop it or regulate it does not:
So obviously, these political moves have nothing to do with what’s best for the people, the market, the economy—they have to do with what’s best for the special interest groups (in this case, the taxi monopoly) which bribe the politicians. That also means it’s what’s best for the politicians—or at least their wallets.
An article by Henry Goldman in Bloomberg Politics beats around this same bush:
“The mayor’s plan to require Uber Technologies Inc., Lyft Inc. and other ride-hailing services to get city approval for upgrades to the user interface on smartphone apps — and to pony up $1,000 each time they do — has rankled a broad swath of companies, with 27 signing a letter protesting his plan. It’s also raised questions about whether the mayor is siding with taxi and limousine owners who helped finance his 2013 campaign.”
And then you get articles like this one from CNN, written, as usual, in a demonizing slant against—once again—a product, service, and company that people love to use! All these idiots on the outside looking in, and badmouthing what they see, as if THEY know what’s best for everyone else, for the market— regardless of the fact that the market is responding positively!
Get a load of this crap:
“Uber says drivers love being able to work when they want to. But that scenario also lets the company avoid the costly requirements of labor laws — like overtime, minimum wage, breaks, sick days as well as workers compensation, unemployment insurance and Social Security payments — even as it controls drivers’ every interaction with customers and can fire them at will. At some point, it plans to eliminate drivers entirely, go to self-driving cars, and pass the savings on to riders. Letting people make a decent living isn’t efficient, it seems.” ~ Harry Siegel | CNN
See the glaring contradiction? If not, let me point it out to you: The drivers ARE the workers; if they love working for Uber, shut the fuck up and mind your own damn business!
Oh—and a little dose of reality for Mr. Siegel: people don’t start businesses so they can hire people, or take care of their employees and/or their families, or so they can pay their employees above-market rates in order to improve their standard of living; people start businesses so they can bring a product or service to the market, and perhaps even make a profit in the process. But yes, you are correct when you surmise that complying with the demands of the state, such as higher wage mandates—rather than those of the market—is, in fact, inefficient.
These arguments against Uber are reminiscent of those supporting an increase in the minimum wage: it’s generally not the workers earning the wage who are outraged, it’s those on the outside looking in who are outraged. And when those irrelevant third-party busybodies finally get “authorities” to increase those wages and company-paid benefits and “improve” worker conditions such as more breaks, paid leave/vacations, etc.—then those workers who need those jobs and accepted those jobs at those wages and under those conditions are the ones who actually pay the price, when they lose their jobs as a result of the increased state intervention.
Anyway, everyone wants more jobs, and for the economy to improve—but then whenever somebody actually creates jobs and boosts the economy, the state and its media cronies quickly move to shut them down. Amazing. And people wonder why the economy is struggling, even collapsing.
Oh, yeah—it’s because “Capitalism doesn’t work!” That’s right. I forgot.
Perhaps if Mayor Bill de Blasio really wants to cripple Uber or the rideshare industry in general, and prevent people from having and doing what they want, he could just follow in Bloomberg’s footsteps, and ban the purchase of gasoline in amounts over, say, 16 oz.
After all, that worked really well to stop people from drinking too much soda, didn’t it?