The Cab Driver scowled at me and said, “What are you doing in my town,” like I should give a shit what he had to say. Even after my Rider rolled up the window, the Cab Driver continued to give me the “stink eye.”
I should have told the Cab Driver the “what is what” for his situation, but as traffic continued to move so did I. Here’s the story and my rebuttal for the Cab Driver . . .
I had pick up a Rider over in the San Rafael area, nice blond lady going to meet her husband and attend some gathering at one of the better hotels around Union Square in San Francisco. We had an uneventful trip into the City, but as I usually avoid Union Square as much as possible I was unsure where exactly the hotel entrance was. Well, my Rider rolls down her window and asks a Cab Driver sitting in a Taxi Line in front of the hotel but about 12 cars from the entrance, if the hotel was up ahead of us to which he replied the affirmative. He then had to get a jab in against Uber.
I replied for my Rider, “Hey, I’m from out of town.”
The big burly Cab Driver scowled and said, “Then what are you doing in my town?” Like he was supposed to intimidate me with his response. For the sake of my Rider, I bit my tongue and let the Cab Driver give me his best “stink eye” until I got out of his view, but because I more than anything else am an opinionated individual offer the following response to the Cab Driver . . .
Your town? WTF do you mean, your town? Not you nor any other Cab Driver can claim any city nation-wide as your town. This City and every one like it across this Country and a couple others belongs to Travis Kalanick and Uber, not to any Cab Driver. Cab Drivers lost any claim to any city that Uber serves long ago when their politicians failed to protect the Cab Companies and rolled over allowing Uber’s gypsy fleet of drivers into the cities unregulated by the thousands to bring about the end of the Cab Driver as we know it.
And Uber has done just that. Uber has “steam rolled” over every Taxi Service in every City that Uber serves, with the support of negligent politicians that allowed the unregulated car service to take over the City. Riders supporting Uber all scream how fast and responsive Uber is supporting Uber’s take-over of their City without understanding that the only reason Uber capable of making such a good show of performance is because while the Transportation Authority regulates the amount of Taxis allowed on City streets, unregulated Uber floods the streets with thousands of cars. Uber is not more efficient than your local Taxi Service. There is just a few thousand Uber cars vs a few hundred Taxis on the streets and the consumer thinks Uber is doing something special. Right now in almost every major city in the US there probably 10 times as many Uber cars as there are Taxis working the streets and your local politician is ignoring the requirements of fair competition because Travis Kalanick says that Uber is not a Transportation Service but a Technology Company. Horse-shit! Uber is nothing more than a Taxi Service with computerized dispatch.
But do not worry Mr. Cab Driver, Kalanick is screwing everybody in this deal. He has reduced rates so seriously that most UberX drivers do not make even a minimum wage if any real income at all. Most UberX is still driving without adequate insurance, does not hold the required business licensing, and continues to dominate most of the “car for hire” markets in the US. When all is said and done, only one will win . . . And, that will be Travis Kalanick of course, aided by the negligence of your local politicians. So, next time you see an Uber and gear up to say something, just STFU and keep driving. Remember, Uber did not take your City so much as your people gave up the City to Uber so that Kalanick could take all those good paying Taxi jobs and turn them into part-time, no benefit, poverty level income jobs leaving the American Worker with a hell of a lot less jobs to support their families.
Sorry Mr. Cab Driver, but this is not your town anymore!