SO far as I know, nobody came to Uber to be a Taxi Driver. We all came to be part of a new transportation provider that was different. We cane to a new transportation provider that provided a far superior service at a lesser cost than a taxi service that took the time to cooperate with the riders, that offered small niceties to riders like gum and bottled water, that treated the riders respectfully to the point of special, and provided a far better transportation experience. Uber and UberX have evolved to become our own worst nightmare.
All of Uber has become bullshit and UberX, the portion of Uber that is fighting all the requirements of regulation, has become a Taxi Service. Yes, UberX is a Taxi Service. But, it gets worse. UberX is a Taxi Service operating by Uber Logic which makes it far inferior to any existing Taxi Service and more abusive to the drivers than any Taxi Service.
Uber had reduced rider fares by reducing the rates they pay drivers to a degree that drivers must work as hard if not harder to make money than any Taxi Service. But, Uber uses Uber Logic as their justification. Uber Logic requires that the driver not consider any expense he would have had if he didn’t work with Uber. So, if you would already have a car payment, cell phone bill, insurance payment, or any other obligation before Uber, you do not consider it part of your Uber compensation. I now pay my car payment, my insurance, my cell phone, and most of my fuel expense from my retirement while little by little losing financially day by day. Why don’t I just quit? Because I am a “dumbass” that believed this would be fixed because Uber is a 51 billion dollar corporation that would not continue this downward spiral. But, they haven’t and I haven’t.
If you are an UberX Driver and you subscribe to Uber Logic it is possible to make money, but not as a full time job from which you expect to pay the payments for items previously removed by Uber Logic. The UberX Driver is now a Taxi Driver that has to work as hard, as fast, and as offensively as any Taxi Driver. He no longer has time for being friendly, helpful, or cooperative. “Get in the car, shut up, and let me get you where you want to go.” is the new UberX. The PUC has made a serious mistake in not forcing the same regulation as required of Taxi Services for Uber. The Government has allowed Uber to provide a lesser service than existing Taxi Services, provided by a bunch of part-timers that cannot earn even a minimum wage off their efforts and do not truly even cover their expenses because real business accounting does not believe in Uber Logic. The end result, welcome UberX, the Taxi Service that per Uber is not a Taxi Service and dispatched by Uber who is not a transportation company but a Technology Company that just provides the service to bring the driver and passenger together.
Failure to regulate UberX has also provided another situation of which Uber claimed would be the opposite. Uber claimed that use of Uber would reduce the amount of traffic in and out of our cities. This is not the case. Uber has flooded the cities with far more drivers than necessary that the traffic congestion presently in our cities is being caused by Uber themselves. Now Uber wants to run a new service similar to a City Bus where cars follow routes like a bus picking and dropping off riders. It would make more sense for a much larger vehicle to do this kind of service rather than replace a bus with 20 cars to do the same job? As Uber does not own or provide vehicles for drivers, the future for some UberX drivers will likely be, “buy a bus via the Uber Auto Purchase Program that after we reduce your driver rates further you will be unable to pay for your bus without working 60 hours per week.” Did I mention that because Uber Drivers are Independent Contractors they are not eligible for Overtime Pay?
Uber claims to be a Technology Company. But if Uber is just a Technology Company bringing the drivers and riders together, how is it that Uber can dictate the drivers rates be reduced to conformity to Uber Logic and why can’t drivers have any say as to how much their rates should be? If UberX is just a Taxi Service, how is it that they can operate without regulation? Even more important, how can Uber be allowed to destroy the Taxi Companies by providing nothing more than a lesser Taxi Service because Uber is not required to meet the same obligations as a Taxi Service. Keep in mind, Taxi Services are regulated by the PUC which requires Taxi Drivers are compensated reasonably, Uber has no such regulation. Uber’s plans call for the disruption of Taxi Services eliminating millions of jobs that earn enough to support a family, and replace these jobs with jobs that do not earn enough to pay their own expenses. You ask, “Then why don’t their drivers quit driving for them?” All I can offer is people are sheep and will follow anything they have been convinced is beneficial to them until they discover they have been taken to the cleaners by whoever the company may be. Uber has increased their income significantly with each driver rate reduction while drivers have suffered loss after loss.
Now Uber will tell you that their drivers make good money. What they are not telling you is that Uber reaches this conclusion by limiting the hours used in their calculation to the time a driver actually has a rider on board. In other words if a driver starts work at 9:00AM and gets off work at 5:00 PM he has not worked an 8 hour shift. Uber only counts the time a driver has a rider on board which means that the driver would have to have a rider in his car for the entire 8 hours to get compensated for it. What about the time traveling to and from riders locations, time doing other work related tasks like getting fuel, cleaning the car, or doing paperwork? If a driver has to be in his car away from his home waiting for a rider to contact him for pick-up, then then driver is working. This is not a question. This is a fact. Nobody leaves their home waiting for work to contact them to come to the job, without pay, except the gentlemen that stand in front of Home depot and UberX. This is a sad day for the American Worker, because it is the plan of all of the new “Sharing Economy” companies to disrupt jobs, most of them in the services industries and presently at least paying a minimum wage. The end result will be the change to jobs like UberX which demonstrates that there are still corporations in America that do not care for the harm they cause to the US Economy which will likely suffer seriously by the actions of these companies. When these workers have been displaced by Uber and replaced with poverty level incomes that Uber provides, forced to live off our welfare system, how serious will this impact our nations economy? Will it mean the failure of the US Economy? If it does . . . Remember the name Travis Kalanick . . .