Yet another of my personal insights.
As technologies like smartphones make communication quicker and easier, as techniques like user and supplier ratings make consumer choice and power stronger and more decentralized, as they all combine to help us use products like cars more efficiently to meet more human needs, as the “sharing economy” makes life better and easier for those who choose to use it—as all these great things happen, you can always count on the cops to come in and threaten to arrest people over it.
See the latest from San Antonio, Texas, and its WOAI news radio as “e-hailing” service Lyft tries to get involved in providing a donation-based ride service to the people of San Antonio:
San Antonio Police warned today that those on line car sharing apps like ‘Lyft’ and ‘Uber’ are illegal, and drivers who pick up passengers for cash risk being arrested.
”You might be one of these drivers who is summoned for a ride, and you won’t know who summoned you,” [Chief of Police William] McManus warned. ”It could be a police officer, and you’ll be in trouble.”
1200 WOAI news was first to report earlier this week that Lyft, which bills itself as ‘your friend with a car,’ is looking for drivers in San Antonio.
McManus said he sent Lyft a ‘strongly worded cease and desist letter’ today, warning them not to set up operations in San Antonio unless they conform to taxi regulations.
“I want to warn anybody in the city who may be tempted to use this service to be very very careful.”
Lyft says it is no different from a friend giving another friend a ride. The passenger doesn’t pay a fare, he or she gives a ‘donation’ to the driver.
But McManus says no matter how you cut it, taking anybody anyplace on city streets for cash is a violation of the city’s strict taxi ordinances.
”The problem with this is, the public is put in danger,” he said. ”You don’t know who is going to show up, you don’t know what the condition is that the car is in that you’re going to get into.”
Except that through the use of an app that allows both driver and passenger to see each other before pickup and see how each other has been rated by other users and drivers, you do know what you are getting into through a system that’s up to the minute and generally far more rigorous than the city’s paper regulations on “official taxis.”
without the state, who would crush the free market in favor of state-sanctioned monopolies?
PJ didn’t say this, but he might as well have.
These are the two things you need to know about the monetary system and they apply to pretty much every currency in the world, including the euro.
When I first read that Drucker quote, I immediately thought of drones and how their efficiency makes possible aggression that would otherwise be too costly or unfeasible.
Goldman Sachs horde 25% of the World’s Aluminium then manipulate the price by delaying delivery to companies by 16 months, increasing the price of it, making them a lot of money and potentially costing consumers $5 Billion over 3 years.
The works of the roots of the vines, of the trees, must be destroyed to keep up the price, and this is the saddest, bitterest thing of all. Carloads of oranges dumped on the ground. The people came for miles to take the fruit, but this could not be. How would they buy oranges at twenty cents a dozen if they could drive out and pick them up? And men with hoses squirt kerosene on the oranges, and they are angry at the time, angry at the people who have come to take the fruit. A million people hungry, needing the fruit—and kerosene sprayed over the golden mountains.
And the smell of rot fills the country.
He wrote those words more than 70 years ago, yet the conditions he describes still ring true for 50 million Americans living in food insecure households today… . Hungry families do not have enough food… [but] not because of scarcity. Every year 40% of food produced goes uneaten. That’s 20 pounds of food per person per day. And that is the twisted irony of hunger in America today. What Steinbeck called that crime that goes beyond denunciation, landfills brimming with rotting food while 15% of households don’t have enough to eat.
It’s economical violence.
Dec. 10 2013
The chief executives of McDonald’s and Starbucks earn more than $9,200 an hour, which is at least 1,000 times the hourly wages of their sales associates, according to a new report by the personal finance website NerdWallet.
The report highlights fast food and retail companies with some of the biggest gaps between CEO pay and hourly wages paid to associates.
McDonald’s, Starbucks and Dollar General top the list, followed by Gap, TJ Maxx, Target, Wal-Mart, CVS Caremark, Best Buy and AT&T Wireless.
Out of those 10 companies, median CEO pay on an hourly basis was calculated as $7,334, compared to $8.73 for sales associates. NerdWallet reviewed 100 companies for the report and selected the 10 that had the highest annual CEO pay to compare the disparities.
CEO pay was calculated by dividing each chief executive’s total compensation (as reported in the company’s annual proxy statement) by 60 hours a week times 50 weeks per year. Sales associates’ wage information was obtained from Glassdoor.com.
The NerdWallet study comes as employees of fast food and retail chains have been staging a series of demonstrations and strikes demanding better pay.
capitalism! job creators! they earned it!
We welcome American Airlines to the NASDAQ Exchange this morning, as they celebrate the completion of their merger with US Airways! Now trading under the symbol “AAL.”
Hahah, I also welcome our airline oligopoly. This is a good thing for America because just look at how patriotic these companies are? You don’t hate the free market and America do you?
Then accept this merger blindly.
University of Missouri economic historian and former Wall Street economist Michael Hudson explains one of the best-kept and most pernicious secrets of contemporary capitalism: Unless the financial scheme underpinning society is restructured, the bulk of debts owed by working and poor Americans can’t and won’t be repaid. The result is an ever-growing class of permanent debt slaves.
The clip below comes from a 2011 documentary called “Surviving Progress.” In it, Hudson states that the problem originates with the privatization of finance. “Every society in history for the last 4,000 years has found that the debts grow more rapidly than people can pay,” he says. “The problem is a small oligarchy of 10 percent of the population at the top to whom all of these net debts are owed to. You want to annual the debts to the top 10 percent. That’s what they’re not going to do. The oligarchy is running things. They would rather annul the bottom 90 percent right to live than to annul the money that’s due to them. They would rather strip the planet and shrink the population and be paid rather than give up their claims. That’s the political fight of the 21st century.”
Hudson’s belief that the problem cannot be solved without a radical reorganization of finance comes from his experience on Wall Street. “My job on Wall Street was to be balance and payments economist for Chase Manhattan bank in the 1960s. My first job there was to calculate how much debt could third world countries pay, and the answer was ‘Well, how much do they earn?’ And whatever they earned, that’s what they could afford to pay in interest. And our objective was to take the entire earnings of a third world country and say ‘Ideally, that would be all paid as interest to us.’ ”