July 15, 2015


Here's Russell Brand on Uber. As you may know, Uber jacks up it's prices when it's busy. Metered taxis can't do that. What I didn't know that Uber is partially owned by Goldman Sachs, the banksters who brought us the mortgage crisis and laid the groundwork for Greece's financial collapse. And that through your cellphone which you book it on, they collect your data and can drive up your fares based on what you can afford since they can see your purchase history, credit rating, who knows what.. If this cabbie is to be believed, this resulted in 1 London woman being charged 150 pounds for a 4 mile ride. 
I dislike Uber for a different reason. 1 is that like to put my arm out and hail a cab the way I've always done. I know that isn't possible everywhere but that's why I love NYC. And my first experience with Uber was horrible, And I don't think they're always insured as heavily as cabs are, which are doubly insured by both the city and the cab co. Uber was also recently forced in CA to claim one of their drivers as an employee. Without being an employee, Uber has to pay no benefits so it's typical of the crappy jobs added under the Obama administration. Hillary may even have to jump into this as she has claimed she'll crack down on "misclassification" which enables employers to cheat workers by claiming they are independent contractors. (I'd love to see Hillary take on Uber, but it's unlikely since she has her tongue up any large corporation's butt.) 
What really fascinates me is Bill Clinton's former Labor Secretary Robert Reich's take on Uber, air bnb and other businesses dubbed the "share economy". They're really, according to Reich, a "share the scraps" economy pointing to a grim future. If you are industrious or super broke and want to make a little extra $ driving people around or renting your home, good for you. But I don't think we'd want to do either if we had decent paying jobs. I've linked to Robert's article below--well worth a read. Another downside to Uber is as Russell Brand points out: these large companies siphon profits away from local economies. Pay for a cab and the money stays right here in this area where the cabbie can spend it at your business.