"Uber has done a lot of questionable things over the years, but its actions this past weekend vis-a-vis Trump's immigration ban weren't among them. An actual timeline from Saturday, which may differ from what you saw on social media:
• 4:20pm ET: CEO Travis Kalanick sent email to employees. It stopped short of explicitly opposing the ban, but did say: (1) The company would identify and compensate affected drivers. (2) Kalanick will raise the issue of how the "ban will impact many innocent people" this Friday during the first meeting of Trump's so-called CEO Council. This email was posted a short time later to Kalanick's public Facebook page.
• 4:55pm ET: NY Taxi Workers union called for a work stoppage at JFK airport from 6pm-7pm. Uber does not suspend its own service, but also does not send out any promotions.
• 7:36pm ET: Uber NYC sends out a tweet, saying that surge pricing to and from JFK has been turned off.
The claim that Uber was trying to 'break the strike' by sending out its surge pricing tweet is belied by the timing (i.e., sent after the strike was set to end). And while it is true that Kalanick has agreed to be on Trump's CEO council, it's also true that execs from both Uber and Lyft have agreed to sit on a new automation council set up by Trump's Department of Transportation. Either a pox on both their houses, or a pox on none.”
The taxi drivers reached out and asked Uber for solidarity. They dispatched drivers to break the strike. They made their bed in the court of public opinion, now they can lie in it.
This is like if Coca Cola workers went on strike, and problem blamed Pespi Co of breaking strike by not sending their workers home??
By not participating, Uber naturally made enemies among a group of people with a tendency to boycott everyone they disagree with.
(I'm not taking sides here, just pointing out that this was a predictable outcome.)
The taxis started a strike action (in support of the protest, but a strike nonetheless).
> By not participating
> I'm not taking sides here
Of course you are.
The term 'strike-break' is usually used when that service has some obligation or agreement to participate in the first place. In this case, the strike was ineffective because there was enough competition/redundancy to cope with the withdrawn services.
Perhaps we can call it both a strike and a political protest.
There doesn't seem to have been any way for Uber to avoid (being perceived as) taking sides, but how am I taking sides?
Also there seems to be a confusion made on strike and strike consequences or demonstration. Being on strike only means stop working, not directly blocking access or service (although it is often done in conjunction). So again Uber providing service for people not serviced by taxis can not be labeled of strike breaking: Uber didn't prevent any taxis to be on strike if they want to do it.
Aside my opinion on the matter as a French who suffered more than one time from strikes is that Uber did a good job by allowing people to live their lives normally. Not being able to move, send a mail, study, lend a book, ... is really frustrating.
Do you intend on charging your mother for the ride she needs? If your answer is "of course not," you aren't providing the same function as a taxi.
Of course Uber (and Lyft) are taxis. It's a service that you call to have a guy in a car come pick you up and take you directly to your destination. It's a different kind of taxi, certainly, but it's still a taxi.
It's very fashionable right now for startups to pretend that they're really a completely different industry than the one they're trying to disrupt, to distance themselves from the stodgy image, but marketing rhetoric doesn't make it so.
or, ya'know, regulatory laws.
Now, on business side, image management is so important it's a huge industry. Many businesses have gone under or lost substantial money when their brands were tarnished by what potential buyers thought of them. Looks like they made another bad move on this front. Most Fortune 500 companies would at least pretend to care more than Uber does. Also in a way highly visible to customers.
- It also shows people/companies what a liability free drivers / unions are. Especially were there is a limit of available taxis (taxi badge).
- Individual taxis are being disrupted and facing competition from Lyft/Uber at the moment.
- the country is divided over support of Trump. Strikers may not be able to reply on a majority for support due to the political nature of the strike.
What's the difference??
This is also a political protest. Just because it's not against the U.S. government doesn't make it less so.
Well, yes, that's how a general strike works. You expect every worker in the field to follow. This is not a strike to get better conditions within one company, this is a strike toward a governmental action.
You mean how it doesn't work. Cartels eventually fall apart when there's no way of enforcing the rules (no way to force someone to strike) because the incentives to cheat (drive during strike) are high.
The other observation is that if your market position has a lot to do with inertia and habit - as in, if many people are using you mostly because they used you the last time, your position is tenuous.
And lastly, this may be a good example of aggregate forms of capital cost. The idea is that every exchange involves not only financial capital (money) but social and spiritual (what one thinks of themselves) capital. Your competitors can increase this aggregate cost and you can modify it without consciously being aware.
Doubly so since half of their business model's premise is that Uber drivers are not employees, independent contractors who bring their own equipment, set their own hours, and pick up the fares that they feel like. They officially only boss the drivers around once they've picked up the fare.
If I was going to work and some strangers told me not to because they were on strike, I'd tell them to get lost.
Uber took steps to help their affected drivers, and stated intent to raise the issue at meetings with Trump. They decided not to engage in the strike along with the taxi drivers. Somehow, what looks to me like a tactical disagreement got recast as proof that Uber doesn't care about immigrants.
I don't think anyone can reasonably argue that the current situation is benefiting Uber's shareholders.
The point being that by breaking the strike, Uber made a terrible business decision. They massively underestimated the backlash they would get. Now they have a (yet another) PR nightmare in their hands.
Why can't public interest be aligned with the profit motive more often?
To some extent this is already the case, you don't see Dow Chemical grinding up children and selling them as couch stuffing, although sometimes they're not very far from that mark.
I saw a headline on HN that said "why always outlasts how" and I believe this to be intrinsic. If we should encourage companies to behave in ways more closely aligned with the public interest, fine. Now, how do we do that? So far, it has been done through varying degrees of regulation and the court of public opinion, but those often fail.
To answer your question - "Why can't public interest be aligned with the profit motive more often?" - because we lack a better how for the time being.
>We created Lyft to be a model for the type of community we want our world to be: diverse, inclusive, and safe.
>This weekend, Trump closed the country's borders to refugees, immigrants, and even documented residents from around the world based on their country of origin. Banning people of a particular faith or creed, race or identity, sexuality or ethnicity, from entering the U.S. is antithetical to both Lyft's and our nation's core values. We stand firmly against these actions, and will not be silent on issues that threaten the values of our community.
>We know this directly impacts many of our community members, their families, and friends. We stand with you, and are donating $1,000,000 over the next four years to the ACLU to defend our constitution. We ask that you continue to be there for each other - and together, continue proving the power of community.
I notice that it diplomatically does not answer your question, only that it will donate for the cause. So I guess it depends on what you mean by "cooperate." They certainly didn't order their workers to strike (which would be dumb of them anyway.)
Consumers could still vote with their dollars, as they should. If you think Uber did nothing wrong then feel free to continue using them.
uses Peter Thiel backed Lyft instead
funny thing is, Trump supporters are now deleting Lyft in favor of uber.
nobody does an ounce of research anymore.
This is true of the vast majority of activists in any political cause. Most join as social signaling to their community that they are "one of them". Case in point, almost nobody interviewed for occupy Wallstreet could even agree on what the goal of the group was.
Particularly in this case, showing support is literally as simple as installing an app that does almost the exact same thing as another app. "sure, I'll do that and post to Facebook about it to show how forward thinking I am"
Protests are rarely about setting policy. They're about voicing their disagreement. Even if people at Occupy Wallstreet (and many other protests) can't agree on the solution, they do tend to agree on the problem.
Grassroots activism used to be better organised. Trade unions and other working-class organisations provided structure and institutional expertise. Discontent could be directed as part of a broader strategic campaign. The atomization of society has diminished the influence of these organisations. Most activism today is disorganised and strategically inept, simply because the instigators are inexperienced and lack the support of a wider network.
I believe cases like these are just spotlights on how different we as humans tend to think while assuming those grouped around us tend to be more similar than in actuality.
Its dangerous when all sides don't consider the others viewpoints at all.
Both sides are so busy trying to force their ideologies on all Americans through a tyranny of the majority that they are simply incapable of reason.
"how can you exercise this right if you support its infringement?"
"you should just give up your guns"
"don't expect anyone to stick up for you"
"you're a hypocrite who thinks 'screw everyone else because I already got mine.'"
That's a microcosm of what discourse is like if you have a moderate opinion these days. There is no middle ground.
Its quite reasonable to find it abhorrent, just don't take it as abhorrent because other people to you that it is.
I like statistics and politics, I dig into the numbers and the actual reports behind news stories and the agendas are so obvious, I get the reasons why, in the UK newspapers are sold on outrage and worldview confirmation first and second and facts about sixth.
I don't believe there was ever a golden age of media but I do think they had more integrity in the past.
Anyway, it is indeed disheartening that if we consider some other viewpoint or perhaps even sympathise with it how easy it is to be branded an enemy to the other. It's a 'you're with us or against us' mentality that is becoming more and more ingrained.
I disagree. The bullshit was just harder to discover in the past - without internet and 10,000 independent sources stating contrary to whatever the media was trying to peddle.
Media's job isn't to educate people. It's to educate people to see things "their" way which is where media bias, however major or slight, comes into play.
I think it's the opposite. The headlines, style, and bias made the bullshit more obvious in the past. Now, there can be 10,000 "independent" sources peddling the same person's bullshit. Media consolidation means many of the news sources all come from the same few dozen companies that consistently bullshit. False information also travels fast in waves across social media but debunks don't per Facebook. There are also firms specializing in doing this with propaganda teams.
It's golden age of media disinformation. Also, with so many sources of low integrity, it's harder than ever for the average person to figure out what's true. Smart people can pull it off for many things but it's a lot of work. More work than many will spend vs turning to favorite channel, station, or friend feed.
It's so much easier to find truth backed arguments with the internet, the average person can easily check sources. People are just mostly lazy and willing to let their biases inform what they will accept as true.
Exactly. Combined with easier spread of misinformation, it makes things worse than it was before where easily-misinformed population in voting or demand side has massive influence on our lives.
How about a Hartal? https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hartal
That implies there was a group, in a formal sense, at all.
Indeed. I think you've underscored exactly why calling out virtue signaling is so unhelpful for productive discourse.
Apparently the latest outrage on Twitter is over Elon Musk's condemnation of Trump's order not being tough enough. They're mad at him for trying to convince Trump to modify his proposal, because "making compromises with the opponent validates them," and he's being "morally cowardly." Well, ok. But at this point the order is (unless the ACLU wins) a reality, and the pragmatic thing to do is to work within the bounds of reality to make things better. Would these people rather he not do that, just to show that he's "standing with them"?
I have an increasing suspicion that the word "solidarity" is becoming a word the means less and less. As far as I can tell, when applied to public figures, it mostly means sending the message that you care. I wish we'd care less about messaging, and more about what works.
As for your suggestion to work with bounds of reality it should apply to Trump. If he want to change immigration policy he can work with Congress to pass laws and regulations. His flashy actions are just for his silly supporters and not for the benefit of US.
Trump plan is to govern through the crisis. He will make flashy stupid actions to get everyone attention while Republicans and Lobbyist disassemble what has been achieved in last 8 years.
That makes no sense. Our existing structure we're working in will let him do about whatever he wants with his voters supporting him. If you want to change that, try to get some amendments to the Constitution through that will. If you're not changing it, then he'll do whatever he wants. Then, anyone trying to change that has to work within the constraints. His if appealing to Executive Branch. Giving him something better for you that also appears to accomplish his goals is one way to do it.
I'm not pushing any specific ideas on that. I'm just saying that it's ridiculous act with assumption the villains shouldn't be villains or some other utopia should happen. Instead, gotta work with what we have.
> Fuck. That. Shit.
What, you think it was only true when it was applied to people you like?
I like my wife, child and few friends. I do not care about Musk, Jobs, Jesus or any other created by PR icon that people put faith in.
This is ridiculous bullshit doing nothing.
Thousands of people doing something that would risk their job, or land them in jail (and I'm not talking about a couple of out-of-work stragglers while the rest high tail it home when the police come out) might change something.
But this? Just a big circle jerk which if Trump has a brain in his head, will just ignore.
Then it would appear there are far fewer Trump supporters than people who oppose Trump.
Quite surprising when you start to do the math.
Trump received almost the exact same number of popular votes as Romney in '12, and McCain in '08. The difference is that 10 million Obama voters stayed home for Hillary:
Whether due to disappointment that Bernie Sanders wasn't nominated, or belief that voting wasn't important since Trump wasn't projected to win, or "OMG Russian hacker!!" conspiracy theories, etc. The bottom line is that Democratic turnout has dropped 15% over the past couple of cycles.
Like the shore in low tide, "swing" locations shift and move out when this happens. I hear advice that future nominees should just ignore blue states and focus entirely on swing locations. That's exactly what the Clinton campaign did! It's a recipe for failure in the modern day. Because once again, turnout is what matters. The rising tide pushed back the "swing" coastline.
This new era of U.S. politics scares me... because I've grown accustomed to Democrats having the luxury of sounding reasonable and centrist, while the Republicans have been forced to pander to extremists in their base. But I think the old conventional wisdom of "run to the edge in the primaries and then pivot back to the center for the general" is breaking down.
In the new rules, candidates have to LIVE out on the edge in order to keep their bases energized and draw turnout. I think we're going to see extreme left candidates facing extreme right candidates (or whatever Trump is), with a goal of get-out-the-vote operations rather than winning over swing moderates. As a swing moderate myself, this sounds disastrous no matter who wins.
That said, I agree with your general message about turnout.
That is important, but it's turnout in states that have swing counties. Turnout in California is less important.
> Whether due to disappointment that Bernie Sanders wasn't nominated, or belief that voting wasn't important since Trump wasn't projected to win, or "OMG Russian hacker!!" conspiracy theories, etc. The bottom line is that Democratic turnout has dropped 15% over the past couple of cycles.
Your explanation is curiously devoid of what I see many people here omit: the repeal of the VRA. We saw changes to requirements and last minute eligability changes in many states that would have been illegal and challengable under the VRA.
While I certainly think there is a contingent of "bernie or bust" people, the turnout in blue states was NOT substantially depressed and HRC didn't lose votes. The vote totals were similar to their 2012 counterparts (in some cases higher) in blue states with absentee/mail voting making a huge appearance. If the BoB people were a significant factor for the blue vote we would ahve seen it reflected.
It's a weird myth that blue turnout was down in blue states. When I look at the vote counts post January, I just don't see it.
What we do see is a conspicuous and large gap of blue votes in red states, and when you overlay that with voter law changes enabled by the VRA the correspondence is quite high.
It's really tempting to lean on the "well they just didn't vote" argument, because it's very pat and not contentious. We should be suspicious of that though.
Instead we get stuck in the mud with tangible topics that affect regular lives like universal health care and free public higher education. Good things, sure, but not the solution to our deeper problems.
But the point of a boycott isn't to purify one's own ethics, but to get the producer of the boycotted product to change their behavior. To this end it is more productive to focus on the market leader, or the most egregious offender, or some other 'tall poppy' of impropriety, than to try to boycott all actors you believe are unethical.
An analogy: a company has an oil spill, so they donate to Greenpeace.
Further, 3mil to their own drivers (which I haven't heard about but whatever) doesn't change US law -- so if their driver is booted out of the country, a few thousand dollars ain't much if you're thrown into a civil war or worse.
Imagine there was a competitor to Uber and Lyft that was owned by the drivers themselves in the form of a cooperative, so that any new drivers would have equal say in the direction the service took. Would that not be more ethical than Uber and Lyft?
"Lyft had continued to operate as well but did not turn off its surge pricing, a company spokeswoman said;" - Exactly, but they managed to stay under the radar as they had less market share. Also both CEOs are on President Trump’s economic advisory group, so what's the reason to boycott Uber?
 - https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/dr-gridlock/wp/2017/01/2...
This is a fine example of a union strike harming people.
Regarding surge, it's "damned if you do, damned if you don't": when they leave surge pricing up in these situations, they're blasted for profiteering, and now when they disable it, they're blasted for... what, exactly? Providing less of an incentive for drivers to go there?
Another is that NY Taxi which employs many 1st and 2nd generation immigrants were granted one hour of their time to stand up in solidarity for those immigrants being detained without risking their jobs. It's not a case of "union strike" since it's unrelated to labour it's simply a political action. You might not like it but calling their protest "poor taste" is just demeaning.
a) You expect Uber/Lyft to take part in your strike, in which case you are impeding travel, or
b) You don't expect Uber/Lyft to take part, in which case no one should be coming down so hard on them for "breaking the strike".
I think it's great that NY Taxi gave their immigrant employees time to participate in the protests, but, they could have... y'know... just done that. Not called for a strike. I'm not sure where you're hearing that it wasn't a strike, though: seems like everyone here is convinced it was an actual labor action, as does the original article. Not saying that's the final word on the matter, but it's pretty confusing what went on, and it seems a bit crazy to call for this strike or non-strike or whatever it was, and then get pissed at Uber/Lyft for not participating.
I don't agree with you that my words are "demeaning". People's actions have consequences. If protesters had extra trouble getting to/from the airport due to the strike, then I consider that a bad consequence of the strike. If there was even the possibility that someone detained by the CBP could have been released during the strike and had trouble getting home because of the strike, then I think "poor taste" is a generous description of events.
You don't understand protest.
The words in MLKs "Letter from a Birmingham jail" could hardly be more suitable to your chain of reasoning.
"I must confess that over the past few years I have been gravely disappointed with the white moderate. I have almost reached the regrettable conclusion that the ____ great stumbling block in his stride toward freedom is not the White Citizen's Counciler or the Ku Klux Klanner, but the white moderate, who is more devoted to 'order' than to justice; who prefers a negative peace which is the absence of tension to a positive peace which is the presence of justice; who constantly says: 'I agree with you in the goal you seek, but I cannot agree with your methods of direct action'; who paternalistically believes he can set the timetable for another man's freedom; who lives by a mythical concept of time and who constantly advises the ____ to wait for a'"more convenient season.' Shallow understanding from people of good will is more frustrating than absolute misunderstanding from people of ill will."
IMHO every strike is about "harming people". That's the point. When the bus drivers in my city strike, they do it to cause mass inconvenience to get people to notice and get a message across.
I mean honestly, you think that one hour (not several hours as you posted) of protesting to show solidarity with the people being detained. One hour of looking the people you are trying to help in the eye and saying "We're with you! You are not alone." is somehow "harming" the people they're trying to help?
Maybe you feel that you can save the world behind a keyboard but most of us would, I think, disagree. You have to show support with actions, not just words.
No opinion on the specific case, I just find your proposal overbroad.
Most taxi drivers are immigrants and many are refugees, whose families are directly affected by this ban; I'm sure your own personal notion of good taste was far from their minds.
It's one thing to expect labor solidarity from workers, but I don't see how it's rational to expect labor solidarity from a massive store of private wealth.
What uber did was make it less profitable for uber drivers to scab, which is moderately pro strike if anything. Lyft fares undoubtedly went up in that time, but Lyft doesn't profit as much from surge pricing, rather their model allowed scabbing drivers to keep those extra wages.
Scabs have historically operated under the cover of a private entity. This was the express function of the Pinkertons, for example. You can't rewrite the history of American labor and what its accomplished with neoliberal circumlocutions. Just because corporations became clever enough to describe scabs as "independent contractors" operating under "complex algorithms" and "surge pricing," doesn't mean we have to believe them.
If Uber had forced a strike on its drivers (without a vote no less) people would have been pissed that they were left stranded.
If enough Uber drivers wanted to strike, they would have. They didn't. Maybe they are a different demograph with different concerns. Who knows.
You know the last time Uber had surge pricing during a huge surge in demand in Australia they got a lot of shit. They said they wouldn't do it again. They kept their word.
And why must Uber be on the side of the strikers or face punishment? What about all the people hailing cabs, Ubers, or Lyfts? They are exempt from morality? Lyft picked up people too. The fact that Uber chose not to price gouge is not a support of the ban.
Saying the didn't dispatch drivers is just another cavillous circumlocution. They created, maintain, and profit from the platform through which the scabs were sent to break a strike. People see through these kind of dodges, although they could do a better job of seeing through Lyft's PR.
"They dispatched drivers to break the strike."
"They created, maintain, and profit from the platform through which the scabs were sent to break a strike."
These are two very different shades of meaning. The first is active, the second is passive. So Uber passively broke the strike, but not actively. I think the difference is appreciable.
Really, they're just a business that employs people whom they don't want to classify as employees, and would sooner drown their riders in a lake than see them organize.
That seems absurd. Uber is not a union. There is a dangerous conflict of incentive in relying on the people harmed by a strike to be organizing them.
Unless this is a coordinated effort, drivers and passengers will just go down the list to see if Lyft/Gett/Wingz/you-name-it is working.
"If you don't actively participate in my exact form of political activism, you're a bad person!"
This is the kind of rhetoric that pushed a ton of people on the fence towards Trump. For some reason, it's a common leftist tactic right now to insist that if you aren't actively engaged in whatever form of extremism the speaker is advocating, you are evil and (propping up the man | part of the patriarchy | oppressing <group> | a literal nazi | etc.). Entirely predictably, this is likely to alienate anyone even slightly to the right of the speaker and push them further right.
Maybe most Uber drivers don't really want to protest in this way. Maybe they agree with Trump. (Probably not, given that it's Manhattan, but who knows.) Maybe they feel like they don't have all the facts and don't want to make a stand based on an incomplete understanding. Either way, attacking them for it is counterproductive for you.
I hate to pick on this quote (I appreciate and suggest people read the rest of your post) but I don't agree with this. A common rightist tactic is to suggest either 1) I was okay with X policy when Obama did something so I have no moral authority to judge it now, or 2) I'm just a liberal whiner, too young, or too weak to appreciate that someone else is in charge so my beliefs are invalid. I am pushed to the left by conservative intolerance just as much as the reverse is true.
Both sides have extremes. I think it balances out. You are following your own proclivities of reasoning, fixating on which messaging you're most enticed by or most repulsed by.
You seem to be saying not "that kind of leftish rhetoric didn't push people towards Trump", but "there's also rightish rhetoric which pushed people away from Trump".
Which seems true to me, and totally worth bringing up. But the bit you quoted also seems true to me, and your post doesn't parse as disagreement with it.
There is an intense echo chamber on the far right that you've failed to mention, with similar barriers to entry. They've gone as far as to create a walled-off invite-only social network called gab.ai. They brigade similarly on Twitter, and aggressively block opinions that do not align with theirs. They peddle information that cannot possibly be true, and resort to personal attacks when facts are pointed out to them. I had someone tell me that 50 million people died from heroin overdoses under Obama. That is absurd – it's a full sixth of the US population. But they insisted. "Do your own research" comes hard and fast when contrary evidence is presented.
These views are mindlessly repeated and reshared by the thousands. Anything that signals group membership is adored regardless of evidence to the contrary; anything that conflicts with the group opinion is rejected outright. I've watched these people change the definition of per-capita to fit their narrative, then insist it's always meant that. There is no shortage of echo chamber problems on the right. Look at Breitbart News.
There is a bipartisan communication problem in America. Algorithmic newsfeeds have fractured the audience into distinct groups that no longer communicate with one another. Americans seem unable or unwilling to perform basic searches to fact-check news sources. Pinning it on a political party or subset of the political spectrum IMO reflects a fundamentally incomplete view of the problem.
"These views" Can you list another? I started that list with the calling the opponent Hitler example.
I would appreciate a cite on "change the definition of per-capita", not because I don't think some "expert" made that assertion... it looks very similar to the similarly meaningless def of "unemployed" some use.
Couldn't agree more with your last paragraph.
The echo chamber comments were prompted by the statement that "the neo-left is an [order of magnitude] worse". There is, in fact, staggering depravity on the right if you look in the right (cough) places.
But further than that: I've seen persistent allegations and slurs against the Jewish faith (many in pre-prepared image form), advocation of literal genocide, celebration of alleged bills that would make it legal for people to use motor vehicles to strike and kill protestors, and calls for those protesting legally and peacefully to literally be rounded up and imprisoned by police because a small group of unrelated individuals committed acts of vandalism or violence. The excuse? "If they're not stopping them, they're supporting them". These were not isolated incidents. I personally witnessed hundreds of voices repeating the latter talking point on a single local news station's Facebook page, in a single night.
The current US National Security advisor Michael Flynn allegedly accidentally retweeted one of these. According to news reports, it read "Not anymore, Jews".
Further down the abyss, speaking more to rhetorical depravity: I've watched pro-Trump posters in private Facebook groups post pictures of themselves pointing firearms at the camera in response to disagreements over fact. There was also a disturbing pattern of posters sifting through the public profiles of others for pictures – essentially peoples' family photos – altering them to appear pornographic or otherwise offensive, and then reposting them in public. One even literally offered to sell a stranger's child in to slavery, on their personal Facebook page, using a picture of them, "because that's what the Muslims would do". I saw attempts to get people fired from their job due to a Facebook political disagreement.
I really believe that there are intrinsic issues with social media that are feeding this crisis: a demand for instantaneous engagement often at the expense of even a few minutes of thought, a "real names" policy on Facebook that sabotages efforts to deflect/prohibit personal attacks in discussion groups, a comically understaffed/underresourced reporting system that I've seen people on all sides try to weaponize against those that disagree with them, algorithmic news feeds that people have voluntarily handed over their information-seeking ability to, and notifications that allow asynchronous debate to escalate into what people perceive as intrusive interruptions. Many unfortunately don't know how to turn these off, and react in anger.
It's no way to communicate and no way to live.
On the flip, shouldn't we all be willing to accept that some of the things we think can't be true are true? History has all kinds of examples.
Arguing that's it's other people who are really making this mistake makes no sense because you made the arg.
Still looking for the cite on "the definition of per-capita".
This is using images of a senator's children and proposing a hypothetical rape of them in service of a political goal, which is so blindingly reprehensible that it's hard to even type out: https://twitter.com/ChristiChat/status/826182267978407936.
Everything you said is also true of Hitler comparisons – anyone with the resources to make that allegation can make them. The only argument I've made is that valid counterexamples exist to your claim that the left is an "order of magnitude worse". Asserting this is not judging individuals by their actions. This is demonizing a large group that you have defined, based upon on equally-hackable individual actions you have observed.
There is no credible evidence of your assertion that the left is somehow rhetorically worse. That's the only claim I'm making: that the hypocrisy is not provably asymmetric. I have not outlined a personal standard of evidence.
As an example: I am a free market libertarian who agrees with marriage equality, but the means by which 'activists' attempt to engage issues turns me off. For example, harassing Mike Pence at his house -- I found that tactic childish and off-putting and immature (and divisive) as well as ineffective. Those tactics don't create positive change, they promote Balkanization of people who might otherwise be convinced to agree with a reasonable position.
France's violent anti-Uber protests -- regardless of issue, I'm less likely to listen to potentially reasonable positions when they are presented in violent or disruptive ways. In fact, those sort of things make me less likely to consider their views.
When a child screams for chocolate -- that's less compelling than if they ask in a reasoned, mature way, presenting facts and arguments rather than throwing things and parading around the house in perpetual outrage.
There will always be children in the world. Get an invite to gab.ai if you want to see the giant cache of them on the right, literally advocating violence and genocide outright. Unreasonableness is not the partisan issue you make it out to be.
By "activists" "harassing" Mike Pence do you mean when three neighbors put up rainbow flags in front of their own houses? 
You are fine with allowing trivial unrelated actions influence your fundamental beliefs of right and wrong?
If you're "turned off" by how activism is going, Free Market Libertarian, you should put your money where your mouth is and present a more workable alternative.
Being called Hitler by "some" after simply being elected, unrelated to any action is definitely useless "Hitler BS".
> but the current reaction by the extreme neo-left is a magnitude of order worse
Drawing parallels to current actions might be hyperbolic or extreme or unfair, but not as dumb - definitely not orders of magnitude.
Maybe I should have inserted more qualifiers, but I deliberately didn't say that. The friends I refer to didn't make the "he's Hitler" arg at or before election time. They lost, they knew it, and they thought about why they lost instead of doubling down on the mistake of picking the Obama global government equivalent on the right. Later on some made those implications by inflating relatively minor actions that fit a pattern they were looking for. I was happy he beat Obomney. Better to let the pendulum swing.
Maybe living in NYC is very expensive, they are poor, and they need money.
This is a political opinion, and the context definitely matters. This wasn't a strike for higher wages, this was a strike to back a political stance.
How would you feel if the cabbies went on strike because we allow Muslims to vote? Would you so vehemently blast people that want transportation to continue functioning in the interim in that case as well?
(In this case, they dislike Hoffa's collaboration, but nobody started calling for the dissolution of unions.)
Strikes are always political. The point of a strike is to say "you need us" and a HUGE proportion of taxi drivers are Muslim. Their family, friends, the people who keep their family and friends safe risking their lives helping the US military in their home countries were all screwed by this.
They wanted to strike to say 'if you ban Muslims, it doesn't JUST mean the US is now run by weak cowards. It means you won't be able to find a taxi because we won't help you. You need us'. The goal was that plenty of Trump supporters missed their flights because of it and had to think about it -- the services they rely on are run by the people they are attacking. Not sure it happened, but at least they tried.
And the "Trump supporters missed flights", yeah so did people who were flying home to see loved ones, didn't support Trump, or didn't care.
A lot of the anger at Uber is also due to their CEO being an economic advisor to Trump.
Meanwhile, Lyft played this perfectly. Stayed out of the fray and then donated $1MM to the ACLU.
Okay? So neither Uber nor Lyft wanted to inconvenience thousands of their customers. That's why I use them over taxis in the first place!
I'm pretty sure that's not true.
If the Airport 'hired taxis' - and then hired 'other taxis' to do some work, then it might be true.
But the Airport doesn't hire them, and also Uber is not technically a taxi ...
So I think it's within the law.
As far as 'court of public opinion' - that's another matter.
I'd be interested to see what people actually think outside of our culture.
Kalanick is playing a double game, collaborating with the Trump administration on the one hand, while simultaneously trying to be seen as moral.
This is too transparent and Kalanick got caught trying to play both sides.
If he believes the Muslim ban and other policies of hate are immoral, he should loudly and publicly resign his position on the president's economic advisory group.
But if Kalanick continues to collaborate, then we know where he stands and we're free to delete Uber and use Lyft instead.
To be clear, I don't mean to be incredibly condescending, but: Do you actually think the POTUS or someone like Steve Bannon actually gives a shit what a nerd who owns an app actually thinks, in light of everything happening right now?
I'm being serious. Fundamentally, "nerd who owns app" is all someone like Travis Kalanick is, in this situation. He is not some magical negotiator or politician because he accepted a position with the administration on the Policy Forum. I don't know why to expect him to be anything more than just a soundboard/printed name. Why would I? Because he and Trump are business men?
And if he IS anything more than "nerd who owns app" -- why would he want to be associated with what appears to be a completely unhinged administration? People do not look at someone like Condoleezza Rice and think "I bet she tried real hard, talkin 'em down. Good show."
This idea "good ol' Travis or Elon" can just talk him down off the wire seems to be nothing but a dream, rooted in some fantasy, as far as I can tell. Maybe all the shit going down is bad for them. But if it isn't - why would they stop it?
With Steve Bannon speaking into the other ear? Bear in mind his strategist is (apparently) deferred to over even Homeland Security officials and DOD commanders when it comes to these matters.
The fact is Kalanick is not going to influence Trump on this issue, but by remaining on the advisory team he might secure a sweet (life saving) deal for Uber down the road. The cost? Trump gets to use him as token for proof of legitimacy/economic acumen/America First/etc.
This does far more damage than any marginal benefit from "speaking into the president's ear".
I'm sure it's good for Uber to be on Trump's team, but don't pretend you're "standing up for what's right".
GP talked about legitimizing policies. That is quite different than questioning the legitimacy of the electoral vote.
Trump signed an order that was illegal, apparently, to lawyers and laymen alike, because it authorized revoking legal permanent residents of their right to entry into the US without due process. Federal judges have ruled this to be the case, and yet for unknown reasons certain Border Patrol/Homeland departments are defying that order (which is not in keeping with their legitimate authority).
It's substantially likely to be illegal even without that exclusion because it includes discrimination based on the Christian faith of residency applicants.
The Constitution is the source of the legitimacy of presidential orders, and this policy is in multiple ways incompatible with that.
But for sake of argument, let's Godwin this:
I don't want an 80% Hitler because someone good is working with him, tilting him 20% towards the better. The only solution is opposition, and that's hard. He needs to be gone.
But we're past that here. The Germans went with it, and I'm sure some thought at the start that going along would let them do some good. Look how that turned out.
No, it's not okay to just do business as usual here and try to nudge things a bit with policy suggestions. It's time for much more active responses.
Its not like they put them into prison camps overnight. First they couldn't attend university, then they couldn't own a shop later they couldn't get a passport. Propaganda people had much work to do to allow it happen.
We do not know if it is first step of many but direction is clear.
Temporary immigration restrictions on 6 countries is hardly the same thing as du-humanizing Muslims.
>We do not know if it is first step of many but direction is clear.
No it's not. Many other countries have very strict immigration controls dependent on the migrant's origin country and they aren't exactly stuffing people into ovens.
This isn't a Muslim ban. This is a 90 day ban on people from specific countries with the goal of improving the vetting process. It's neither permanent or specific to Muslims. Obama did a 180 day ban on Iraqis for the exact same reasons.
The effectiveness of this policy can be debated, but comparing this to Hitler -- that's just nonsense.
First, let me get this Donald Trump issue out of the way: If you’re thoughtful about it and show some real awareness of history, go ahead and refer to Hitler or Nazis when you talk about Trump. Or any other politician.
Like Mo Farrah, an olympic gold medal winning athlete and British citizen?
Nobody from Microsoft, Google, Apple or Facebook are in this group.
- Disagree out of principle. Someone else will step up to fill your stop.
- Agree and provide your POV of policy. A 'worse person' won't replace you (immediately).
Of course, it doesn't look like that is the case. By all appearances Kalanick is mincing words as he tries to balance the affections of the administration and angry users. My guess is that he is just another spineless think-for-himselfer.
When have you ever heard the advice, "you get what you want by refusing to engage the only people who can do something about it?"
Is Bernie a fascist for saying he would work with the Trump admin on the good parts of his agenda?
Just as an exercise, if Pence were president and Trump were VP, do you think we would be hearing as little from Trump as we're currently from Pence? And before you say, well, Pence is the VP, you're right, but I can't imagine Trump taking second seat to anybody, while Pence has.
So is Musk, and many others.
Cook was just at dinner with Ivana a few days ago.
And that (on a diplomatic level at least) also happen to be major US allies in the region.
EDIT: I don't know what to tell ya, but downvoting doesn't make it less true.
Also interesting: Uber pledged $3M to help drivers right now. Lyft pledged just $250K/year.. to the ACLU (annual budget: $133M). But Uber lost that one too. People want war with Trump, not diplomacy.
As for turning off surge pricing, clearly it was after the strike and meant to reduce customer complaints about surge pricing after exceptional events. But it also means they were "effectively undercutting taxi drivers as they returned to work after protesting." Another "Doh!" moment for Uber.
The man just unilaterally stranded thousands of permanent residents outside of the country - and the departments enforcing this are disobeying legal court orders to halt the ban.
This is a fundamental attack on the rule of law. How exactly do you negotiate with that? "Please, sir, could you stop destroying lives?"
Do you think that he is too stupid to understand the consequences of his actions?
I will however point out that if you're boycotting Uber over joining the advisory board then you should do the same for all the others, including Elon Musk's companies. Maybe you should even boycott Apple, Google, Facebook, Amazon and all the others that took a meeting with him, since they are also taking a diplomatic route.
Oh, and this is fun: Trump advisors Peter Thiel and Carl Icahn are part-owners of Lyft.
Not sure why techcrunch doesn't mention that this may have NOTHING to do with the #deleteuber campaign.
I initially thought of "eight ball", which does feature in one of their more dramatic stories. But apparently the term has other or mixed provenance. And things like the urban dictionary provide multiple definitions.
Just what is a "baller?" From origins perhaps in basketball to urban street culture to drug culture... to modern day "hard ass", type A or whatever? Just what do people mean when they call themselves or someone else a "baller"?
It seems to be one of those terms that depends significantly on the specific context within / to which it is applied. Yet people will just say "baller" -- like my acquaintance -- and leave you to fill in the background. In other words, you have to be in the know, to know what they are really saying.
Which, IIRC, per some of the definitions I encountered, is actually part of its definition. :-/
An eight ball is 3.5 grams of coke, AKA an 1/8 of an ounce.
If Uber had 'picket-lined' a location (like JFK) against all pick-ups for a time period, that level of driver control could work against the preferred independent-contractor characterization of their driver-relationships. Whether the employer dictates the exact places, times, and manner of service is a part of that evaluation.
It also seems odd to have an employer dictate to its contractors (or even wage employees) to participate in a labor action, or political protest.
Shouldn't that be the workers' decision? Uber didn't force anyone to either do, or not do, JFK pickups.
Sure, one thing you can do is disrupt the specific people doing something bad. But that's pretty rare. As MLK explains, the point is to create a more general disruption so that everyone has to take notice of an issue they might otherwise ignore:
"Nonviolent direct action seeks to create such a crisis and foster such a tension that a community which has constantly refused to negotiate is forced to confront the issue. It seeks so to dramatize the issue that it can no longer be ignored."
From his "Letter from a Birmingham Jail": https://www.africa.upenn.edu/Articles_Gen/Letter_Birmingham....
The whole thing is worth reading. In particular, this bit always wakes me up: "I must confess that over the past few years I have been gravely disappointed with the white moderate. I have almost reached the regrettable conclusion that the Negro's great stumbling block in his stride toward freedom is not the White Citizen's Counciler or the Ku Klux Klanner, but the white moderate, who is more devoted to 'order' than to justice; who prefers a negative peace which is the absence of tension to a positive peace which is the presence of justice; who constantly says: 'I agree with you in the goal you seek, but I cannot agree with your methods of direct action'; who paternalistically believes he can set the timetable for another man's freedom; who lives by a mythical concept of time and who constantly advises the Negro to wait for a'"more convenient season.' Shallow understanding from people of good will is more frustrating than absolute misunderstanding from people of ill will."
But racial injustice isn't just a side effect. It is quite often the point. If you read Loewen's Sundown Towns, you can see that quite often white people just don't like to see black people doing well, especially doing better than themselves. You can see the same thing echoed in Hochschild's "Strangers in Their Own Lands", although people have mainly learned not to say it out loud.
You're playing with words to fit a narrative, which doesn't match reality. At the same time, the Trump tropes are not about invasion of another country, so now you're being disingenuous just to argue. Good luck with that.
I'll continue to assert most of the outrage is misdirected.
The problem with this approach is that unless you do it in a way that's relevant to the original issue, you're just dragging innocent people into your fight and victimizing them. Depending on how much of an asshat you are to them (like, say, stranding them for several hours at an airport when they've just got off a flight), there's a good chance you'll push them to be less sympathetic to your cause.
I think that protestors should be careful about their tactics, but I don't think they should have to invent ways to tie a protest's theme to its objective. We protest when our moral values are offended, and that's enough of a reason.
But let's run with your notion. Suppose there is somebody who says: "I guess I didn't know about the civil rights violations and the deaths that this policy will result in. And I guess it's terrible that these refugees have been waiting years in limbo trying to rebuild their lives. But what's really important is that I expected to be home on time for dinner, so now I won't help them."
I don't think a person like that was every going to be sympathetic to the cause. They weren't going to do anything. They were going to ignore it.
And that's exactly the point of MLK's style of protest. It is to make a problem for some into a problem for all. It is to make it impossible for comfortable people to keep ignoring the problem.
So the solution is to harm more? That's not a peaceful protest, that's terrorism.
Raise awareness. Be loud. Be visible. But if you base your protest around screwing up someone else's day the response you get will more likely be "hey maybe you deserved it" than "wow we should help these people."
If you think you know a better way to lead protests, by all means show us how. But I have no time for armchair experts whose only contribution is "u r doin it rong bcuz I dont lik it".
The people who would say, "maybe those refugees deserved it" because something was mildly inconvenient for them were never, ever going to stir themselves to do the compassionate thing. Ditto the people who value a sliver of comfort over helping legal residents arbitrarily ejected from their homes.
Your claims here are those of the white moderates that MLK called the greatest stumbling block to black freedom. Apparently you haven't yet bothered to read his "Letter From A Birmingham Jail". But I'm done trying to spoon-feed it to you, so if you'd like to pursue this further, take it up with him.
Yes - some people might be less sympathetic, those are not the people the protest set out to influence. It's the people who haven't made up their minds yet, the people who think that "This will all blow over soon" and want to get on with their lives in their bubble. They NEED to be inconvenienced to react, to make up their mind that this is something they can't ignore. Only then when you engage the apathetic can the protest grow, and protests must grow otherwise most of them fizzle.
It would be like MLK advocating for equal rights protests in a majority-black church.
NYC residents being hazily "on their side" in a broad political struggle is distinct from actively doing something to oppose the EO. Again, read the Letter.
And no, it wouldn't. Although that is something that he did quite a bit of, given that he got his start as a Baptist preacher, so I'm not sure your analogy works.
He disagrees with the white moderate proclaiming "I agree with you in the goal you seek, but I cannot agree with your methods of direct action." You are committing that error.
No I am not. I am fine with disruptive protests, but they should be disrupting the people who need their minds changed. What is so difficult to understand about the fact that we are talking about protesting in the wrong place entirely?
The analogy is MLK protesting in an all-black church to prevent the constituents from hearing a sermon from a civil rights activist.
This has nothing to do with "inconvenient" protests so much as idiotic protests disrupting the very choir to which they are preaching.
No. You continue to fail to understand MLK's theory of protest. If you have read his Letter From a Birmingham Jail, you give no sign of it.
If the people being disrupted are already active in a movement to change things, they will not mind the protest. But if they are merely people who say "I agree with you in the goal you seek" without active support, then they are the very moderates that MLK was addressing here: "I have almost reached the regrettable conclusion that the Negro's great stumbling block in his stride toward freedom is not the White Citizen's Counciler or the Ku Klux Klanner, but the white moderate [...]".
People will always protest against things that are more immediately visible to them than things they read about in infrequent news articles. That's just human nature.
You don't have to protest every cause to protest any cause. You can even protest things that, taken together, demonstrate you hold ideologically inconsistent views, if you want. That's on you.
That doesn't help your argument. They were aware Obama killed a quarter of a million people and did nothing. Meanwhile Trump inconveniences some travelers and somehow he's the monster worth protesting. Get real.
I'll thank you to reconsider your projections of people you've never met.
This in a nutshell is why things will get worse stateside. There will be those who write off the circumstances behind where we find ourselves today as human nature (an absolution of sorts, a moral line item to be paid when the circumstances are brought to their attention, not too dissimilar from the likes of HSBC et al when they pay penance in the form of monetary notes for aiding and abetting criminals as defined by a given state) and join the protest, and there will be those who apply the tools refined during war agaisnt their "own" at such protests.
Either way, only those who come out ahead outside of any virtue signaling will probably be the suppliers of such tools.
The drivers sacrificed their income to make a public statement.
Lyft took a very public opposition stance and committed to give 1 000 000$ to support an advocacy group.
And this isn't necessarily a stance against Trump, but just this particular executive order.
 Travis's facebook post
Edit: Eh =D, I replied before reading your link. Looks like I can reinstall Uber, good cause I like having the options. I still hope that companies realize my above point going forward.
If you go off 1 guy's name to avoid a company rather than their actual business practices, no partisan from either side could buy anything.
I'm a registered independent whose compass is science rather than ideology, (at least since the Bush Jr era, prior to which I was a registered Republican)- and I'm still deleting Uber and will use Lyft instead.
If you just want to delete Uber not because of Trump, then it's not a big deal then.
Everything you say is true, but those "implementation details" aren't just implementation details. You say that like the actual implementation of a thing is immaterial. That's the meat of the thing; that's its substance. The stuff you're enumerating is more structural.
There is no meat to the bandstanding outrage at Uber. It's all posturing. Boycott Uber for breaking the strike (sic) and also boycott Lyft for its Trump ties.
That's hard though, let's just boycott the black Uber brand. The pink moustache is kinda cool.
New York is big, but I'd imagine the CEO had a focus that included LA, Chicago, London, etc. and that would take away from coordinating with any taxi-strikers in NYC.
Addendum: Did the taxi union contact Uber before the strike to coordinate this action?
I mean it's a 1 hour strike. Is there any real meaning to this? The trains have stopped working for far longer than that.
1) Uber drivers by responding to pickups.
2) Uber customers by requesting those pickups.
3) Uber the company by facilitating those pickups.
I am not sure we can claim high moral ground and label (3) immoral while staying oblivious to (1) and (2).
Now that the labor occupies a much less central place in our society, these common norms and knowledge have been lost. I happen to be appalled by this because of my own political views, but good or bad it's certainly a sign of the times.
>these common norms
Common to union supporters.
Also, abusing a unions' power to make a political statement rather than fight for the workers' rights is only weakening the union further. It's now less of a self defense mechanism and more of a mafia-esque bullying mechanism.
Your point still stands, of course. (Though I choose to avoid taking the moral high ground not by condemning all of those entities, but by refusing to condemn any of them, since I don't see any fault here.)
If businesses associate pro-trump practices with a loss of revenue, this protest has been effective.
I'm no Uber fan but those are pretty lousy choices to force on anyone.
Uber has pulled out of many cities rather than comply with their regulations(which cabs already had to follow) and left tens of thousands of drivers without jobs, sometimes overnight. The notion that they care about anyone stuck overseas is a joke.
Messaging indeed... Uber has sent a message that they give no fucks about their drivers a long time ago. This isn't the first or even the hundredth time Uber has done something terrible.
Let the tide of public opinion sink this shitty soulless company before were stuck with another Comcast for 20 years
1. they've done a lot of questionable things over the years so when they did something that looks a little off on something that a lot of people are upset about then all those things they did in the past came back to haunt them.
2. if the message is we consider this a bad policy and we don't support it, they mumbled that message low enough that people might have thought they were saying something else.