I was recently back in town for a wedding and our uber to the hotel from the venue (about the same distance) was $9.
Once came to town (now on the east coast) I instantly noticed many friends who used to drive would take an uber. It's cheap, it's easy to call one from a crowded/loud place, you know how much it will cost, they don't use cash, they know where you are, and you don't have to give directions. For someone intoxicated (or anyone really), these are game changers.
It's the difference between "who's going to drive?" and "who's calling an uber?"
Company politics aside, the accessibility of ride-sharing services introduces numerous real safety benefits on top of the obvious convenience.
Over here, drinking and driving is an extremely shameful and embarrassing thing to do. I would say it's on par with hitting a child. You just don't do it, not to save 20 bucks, or to save you from walking an hour.
But then I was in a similar situation off in a small town in Norway. I was at a 80th birthday party in a small town. Most of the attendees were drunk. Everyone already knew someone to take them home, and organized themselves accordingly, some waiting a bit for the sober driver to return empty. A few found someone at the party (my spouse)- and then proceeded to drink. It was nearly surreal to be in the situation.
The truth is that in the states, it is OK to say, "I've only had X beers, so I'm ok to drive." IT is socailly acceptable behavior. And no one really keeps track most times, so if they seem sober enough to us or we know better, we'll let them go. The acceptable BAC level is much lower here - one beer can send you over the limit - and penalties are harsher, so that could be a major factor as well.
He's also said that I can get penalized - through loss of license and other means - just by being a sober passenger with a drunk driver. It benefits me to make sure the other person is sober.
If their field equipment is anything like SCRAM bracelets (same basic technology as a Breathalyzer) they're cutting all sorts of corners (demanding precise readings out of sensors that are running well outside their recommended operating environment with less calibration than recommended) and throwing false positives left and right.
Drunk driving penalties are too stiff to play fast and loose like that.
Seems like Norway would be the same.
The BAC level now for Utah is .05. It isn't like all of the US states are slouching. Of course, Utah is different from the deep south.
The lowball estimates of 41% come from things like the following: "Professor Tim Heaton, who studies LDS demographics for church-owned Brigham Young University, says the county numbers probably come from church membership rolls, and that between half and one-third of those people are not active in the faith. If that's true, then, at most, 41.6 percent of Utahns are church-going Mormons." (2005 source http://archive.sltrib.com/story.php?ref=/ci_2886596 ) It's at least slightly nontrivial to decide on the right definition, but I think church membership is a perfectly fine measurement.
As such, almost every other publication and measurement supports the "obvious" claim that Utah has a Mormon majority of (60+some)% and even Salt Lake County may have a (50+epsilon)% Mormon majority.
Exampe source from 2014: http://www.sltrib.com/news/1842825-155/mormon-populace-picks...
Are you annoyed that the entire state was founded by LDS pioneers? Without the mormons, Utah would be west colorado wasteland or another desolate, sparsely populated state like Wyoming.
And 41% can be a majority depending on how you break down the remaining 59%
I'm only annoyed that people have been stating that same old statistic which hasn't been true for at least a decade.
41% is never a majority. https://simple.wikipedia.org/wiki/Majority
Do you have a source? Wikipedia seems to still support the "same old statistic" in a lot of ways and indicates by all accounts an LDS majority in Utah.
In my country, 41% of people are red party, 38% are blue party, and 21% are green party. Which party has the majority share of voters?
In my example the party with plurality can capture the majority of the vote, but that doesn't necessarily mean the party itself is a majority.
I also live in an area where there are 4 colleges and universities in two towns within 10 miles of each other. I went to one of these colleges, and have seen what people do to get to and from the bars first hand. There's one taxi service that I'm aware of, and they charge $30 to go between the two towns, one way. It's a rural area and most roads have speed limits of 55 MPH. Most of the college students are not locals and don't know the roads. Our winters are also harsh and make for dangerous driving conditions even without alcohol. The blotters are full of DUI arrests, accidents, and deaths.
Therefore, unless I have a real need, I don't drive between like 9 PM and 4 AM Friday through Sunday. Why they still haven't passed legislation to allow Uber/Lyft here, other than partisan bickering, I have no idea... I have no doubt that it would help tremendously.
Understanding why people do shit is quite different from condoning shit.
Here's the thing: it's not that we have great transportation, what we don't have is bars and restaurants pop up in some random spot next to a road, with a big parking lot in front. If you build a restaurant like that, you kind of already made clear that it's a restaurant for people in cars.
https://goo.gl/maps/AfQX2VDpYaA2 - The Draft House, Far North Dallas. Note the strip center that contains, among others, a sushi/Thai food place, a pizzeria, and a food mart. (as a side note: I used to go to the Draft House regularly but stopped after management changes ran it into the ground)
https://goo.gl/maps/bmSsv6ZgGyQ2 - The Irishman, Far North Dallas. If you're not careful, you might not even notice it among all the other places there.
https://goo.gl/maps/mGFCmq669xP2 - Katy Trail Ice House Outpost, Plano. This is a huge, huge shopping center.
https://goo.gl/maps/kEdHh41QAJF2 - Lonestar Grill and Sports Cafe, Richardson. In the middle of a strip center with a freestanding Dickey's. If you don't see it, look waaaay in the back, just to the right of the Dickey's.
https://goo.gl/maps/Fy946RDP6Ly - The Hub & Ron's Place, Addison. Next to a UPS store and a whole bunch of other shops. The two bars are connected; the logo for Ron's Place is an R inside a square.
I don't know if that is really true. Or to say, what is your definition of a suburb?
I've seen plenty of bars out in the middle of nowhere, especially in small towns surrounded by rural communities.
That's the reason there are no cabs and I don't blame cab drivers. They don't get paid to sit around 40 minutes to find a passenger. I'm surprised that finding an uber in one of those places is not difficult either.
Outside of the US, a lot of the population is very condensed (well the US is to some degree) making cabs and public transportation much more efficient/effective IMO.
If robot taxis happen, they won't be just like regular taxis without a driver. The mix between investment, hourly cost and per mile cost would change a lot, making entirely new business models possible and shifting the optimization peaks of existing ones.
Personally, if I would somehow happen upon a dozen robot taxis to turn into a business, I would select elderly people in a rural area as my target audience. Not your typical early adopter and quite some natural churn (short age window between should not drive anymore but still able to take care of themselves), but you get awesome ad targeting if you put out flyers in the doctor's waiting room. Oh, and you need to hire the one taxi driver who currently serves the doctor's appointment market in that area as your support guy who chats all the nice old ladies through the introductory phase over the car's hands free.
Even if calling a driverless car cost more for remote areas, it would (or at least could) still cost a fraction of the cost of a taxi. $30 instead of $120 for a long distance drive is totally reasonable.
Nor do driverless cars have to make up for "idle time". The only legitimate counter argument as to why a taxi should earn as much as they do is that they sit around not making any money for 10-60 minutes at a time. However, that goes away with driverless cars, and any excuse to charge exorbitant prices the way taxis do completely vanishes.
Also I suspect another issue is the cliffs for government benefits. If you work between 45 - 60 hours a week for $12 - $13 an hour like I did a few years ago you aren't exactly well off yet programs like Obamacare will fine you for not buying health insurance that you can't really afford. Similarly free clinics will turn you away and I wasn't able to find a single aid program that you would qualify for except about $20 a month in food stamps. I figured out the costs once and there are a great many situations where a rational actor would simply work less or for less money and do better economically.
People bring up legal recourse for these situations, but realistically, it's very scary when you're in that scenario and have to actually deal with getting underpaid or not getting paid for a while but having your dignity.
About the tipped wages mentioned a couple comments up, from my experience working delivery, that's a great way to get yourself fired. Because I guarantee you all the employees won't go in together on saying it, you're basically telling the management "I don't get tipped as much as everyone else" which is great grounds for poor performance, it's a catch-22.
IMO that's the strongest argument for replacing welfare programs by a negative income tax, or universal basic income.
Population densities in the US suck, and everything is oriented around personal cars. Totally different things.
Very hypothetically, if someone else got you drunk in the middle of nowhere without your knowledge and there are no taxis available, and it's freezing outside so that you can't sleep under a bush, then not letting you stay the night at whatever house you were in would be similar to murder I guess. A drunk person driving is just off the table and everyone understands it.
Drinking and driving is still very taboo in the US. It's just that most areas of the country require an automobile to get around and most people have a car.
One more thing, no one should be surprised that people drink and drive anywhere. People make all sorts of terrible decisions when they're intoxicated, they're drunk after all.
You give two excuses to drink and drive. Both are indefensible.
The first excuse is "need a car to get around, have car". I live in a sparsely populated area as well, and everyone uses a car to get around. When we go out drinking, we plan ahead. The most common options are designated drivers, taxis, sleeping over, walking, or cycling.
The second excuse is "can't expect to make good decisions while drunk". That's a bit intellectually dishonest. The decision to think about how to get back later, knowing you're going to be drinking, is a bad decision made while entirely sober.
The only way I know of actually beating some reason into people thinking like that is through heavy and sure penalties. Lots of alcohol spot-checks. Automatic ticketing for speeding measured via average, not instantaneous speed. DUI, you lose license. Speed, you're half-way to losing one.
Politically untenable perhaps, but I could see it making a dent in deaths on the roads.
I wouldn't normally call e.g. Germany a "collectivist" society but in comparison to the attitudes I frequently hear about from Americans (especially in politics) Germans apparently genuinely care more about their fellow citizens.
Not being as likely to kill someone else is the entire point. Heck, drunk cycling is only slightly better than drunk driving because you're less likely to run someone over (but might still cause an accident when a driver has to do something dangerous to avoid you).
Drunk cyclists killed 1 person between 2007-2011 in Poland. Drunk pedestrians killed 3 persons. http://ibikekrakow.com/2012/03/28/ile-osob-zabili-pijani-row...
Drunk drivers killed hundreds.
50% of people caught for DUI are riding bicycles. And until recently, they were getting exactly the same prison sentences as drunk truck drivers. Almost half of people imprisoned for DUI were riding bicycles.
I think drunk cycling is completely harmless, and should be legal. If someone is too drunk, he can't keep balance on bicycle anymore and problem automatically fixes itself.
There is a lot of moral panic about drunk driving, but at BAC under 0.5 permille (vast majority of people caught) it's completely harmless or even safer than riding sober. https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/c/c0/WHO_BAC_... Only truly drunk people in cars should be punished.
I like numbers, and numbers say drunk bicyclists are not a problem.
Drunk cyclist is hundreds times less danger than drunk driver, and should get hundreds times less punishment.
I get that different cultures have different jay-walking habbits, even within the US cities are vastly different, but if i really cared about well-being of others i wouldn't drive like that in a city. I think the theory in other comments that drunk driving is seen culturally as immature and stupid is a better explanation.
It's funny, but in the US it's common for college freshmen to have two choices of lodging: either in a fraternity (Animal House, the movie ;-) or in a dorm room, two people per room (hence the 'Roommate from Hell' stories that grace the internet).
Not big on leaving individuals alone.
I think this is best demonstrated by the minimum liability insurance required to operate a car. In California, right now, you can drive a car with only $35K in liability insurance... which is crazy. Sure, that will cover most cars, but it won't even cover a moderate injury. Very few people have the assets required to pay for a serious injury, and therefore, the victim is usually under-compensated.
Right now, cars are essentially being subsidized by the people who are getting hurt who get under compensated, because few people have enough liability insurance (or assets) to cover the cost of really hurting someone. If the injuries per mile were better factored into the cost of driving (which could be done by increasing the liability insurance minimum) driving would be a lot more expensive; quite possibly, once you factor in injuries, other, safer forms of transport would start looking practical.
In Germany, there are regulations for this. The mandatory insurance has a minimum coverage of 7.5M € for injuries, 1.12M € for property damages and 50 k€ for other accident related costs. And yet our car insurances are affordable AND the insurers make really nice profits.
It's a damn shame the US has decided to build streets that are safer to drive on drunk than walk on.
Even walking can be risky. If you are seen falling down or even staggering a bit you can get a public intoxication charge.
It's also quite common to see fictional murders on television but that doesn't make it any less taboo.
> no one should be surprised that people drink and drive anywhere.
> People make all sorts of terrible decisions when they're intoxicated
I knew a guy in college who often got totally hammered when he went out. He would always give his bus money home to one of his companions he was out with to hold onto so that he wouldn't accidentally spend it or lose it.
Depends on where you are. In rural America it's borderline socially acceptable (unfortunately).
It depends on the social circle you are in though if you know very frequently drunk drivers vs responsible drivers. Most people I met in adulthood don't think twice drinking and driving but most people I meet in childhood will tend to discourage it. I don't really know why other than maybe different peer influence? When people see me call a cab they openly say "I just drive home drunk." Like it's nothing. Similarly I've had cab drivers commend me for not driving drunk. "Oh, you called a cab, that's good most people would just drive drunk."
I have co-workers who spend most Friday afternoons (12-5) at the bar and drive right home after like it's nothing. These people don't think driving drunk is a problem.
Personally, I can't understand why you'd go out and drink if you had no way to get home. It doesn't come unexpectedly out of nowhere. If there's no transportation you are still making a choice in the matter. I don't buy excuses, when you choose to go out and choose to start drinking while you are out without a designated driver you are making both choices and making them sober. If it was that taboo, people simply would either stay home or have a designated driver. It's really not that difficult. In fact, I know people who will all meet at the bar and instead of car pooling with a rotating DD they will just all travel in their own cars independently and all drive home drunk.
Having 4-5 beer over a few hours and driving home is completely normal in most parts of the US. In most European countries, that's socially unacceptable.
I usually did most of my drinking at the beginning of the night anyway (intentionally so this would be a viable strategy), so I was mostly sobering up at the end.
But there were still plenty of nights where I slept on the host's couch or floor until morning, and a few times where I made poor decisions because I really, really didn't want to have to find other transportation (mostly just getting in the car with people who I couldn't determine if they were sober enough to drive). Taxis really are awful in small towns.
It's not as if the instant your BAC goes over .08 you are driving like bumper cars.
That's 10 times lower than the yearly death rate from simply driving. And 1/3 road deaths are caused by drink driving.
My point is that if you didn't care about moral hazard, the odds are overwhelming that you will make it home safe even if you drive drunk.
I'm not condoning, just explaining drunk driving logic.
That 1/3 road deaths is artificially inflated because if you had 1 drink and well under the legal limit it still counts as alcohol related fatality.
As it should. 1 drink is enough to impair your ability to drive.
EDIT: I'm probably wrong, someone else in the comments posted data showing risk only increases after .03 BAC.
But it isn't the .08 drunk drivers killing people, it is the .16+ BAC drunk drivers killing people.
Sure, you feel great after a few drinks, that is kinda the point. But you are still impaired. Driving is not an activity where confidence helps. Reaction time matters and that goes down from your first drink.
But yea the border towns are probably like the worst parts of the US, which is the worst country I've come across when it comes to drunk driving.
That, and by the fact that in a lot of the very rural areas, drunk driving has a rather low fatality rate, given that there are no other cars on the road and no obstacles to crash into. If you run off the road, you just drive into some corn or wheat or alfalfa, or at worst hit somebody's cows. (These are the same places you'll see people e.g. allowing their young children to drive trucks or motorcycles—even by themselves, at night. There's just nothing much that can go wrong.)
(I think this is all also true of rural Russia, which is a large part of where the American stereotype of Russians as constantly drinking comes from.)
People always compare the US to Western Europe when this topic comes up, but that's simply an invalid comparison. For this topic, the US should be compared to Russia or possibly Canada. These countries have rural areas which are neither completely deserted (where drunk driving would be irrelevant even if it were likely to happen) nor support a large enough population to have reasonable transportation alternatives.
I wish the US would recognize this fact and have two sets of drunk driving laws - one for urban areas (matching Western European conventions) and one for rural (matching current conventions). Unfortunately, this is probably impossible since it could be seen as permitting drunk driving.
You should see Thailand. Many districts in Bangkok have their own dedicated pool of motorbike-taxis often located at specific points. The group of them outside my previous apartment frequently shared whiskey or beer with me after dropping me off.
We don't know where you are, you need to tell us where "here" is.
Over here (Hungary), drinking and driving is basically illegal. As in 0mg, zip. It makes things a lot simpler IMO.
I don't understand. Of course you do! Just go out and don't drink...!
When I grew up we would just take turns. A car seats 5, so you would be the driver every 5 times. That's not too bad...
You could still have a beer or two, or just have a sober evening and the next day without a hang-over.
Also, everyone knew the formula by which blood alcohol gets reduced over time, and how much alcohol would be in a glass of beer. At one rare event when I knew I would have pretty much maxed out my quota I once got in a police control and got tested at night. It was very accurate... I missed the limit by 0.02 per mill. I played a bit safer from then on, though. The limit in our area is at 0.5 per mill, but if you had an accident with over 0.2 you might already get in trouble with insurance coverage. Apart from the fact that of course the risk of having an accident goes up and can destroy lives.
The nights I can plan for a sober driver vs using a TNC are few and far between and usually on the weekend when one of my friends husbands or wives doesn't mind being the DD. This doesn't help during happy hour, etc at all.
Uber/Lyft/TNCs made going out far less anxiety ridden ("will I even be able to get a cab? When do the buses stop?")
> it's easy to call one from a crowded/loud place, you know how much it will cost, they don't use cash, they know where you are, and you don't have to give directions.
p.s., why do people like you want to hate on ride sharing services so much? Is it just that nothing can ever be good enough in your mind?
In my personal experience, you call a cab, and they may not even come. There's no repercussion for that with traditional taxi services.
Uber may be subsidizing pricing now, but there is still a higher price point that provides additional value, particularly for those drinking.
Reliability, convenience, and accountability -- these are the keys.
Even if ridesharing services were the same price as a taxi, knowing roughly how much it will cost before I even call the thing is a huge plus, and knowing the route they will take me on is even better.
I don't need to be constantly on the lookout to make sure my uber driver isn't trying to fuck me by running the meter going the wrong direction giving me some bullshit about how his way is faster and then when we get there the credit card machine is broken and the fare is 3x what you expected (which is already 2x what it was in your home area).
With uber, if someone pulls that I know I can get a refund with a pretty good chance in success. I haven't ever had a taxi company call me back about anything, half the time the fucking taxi doesn't even show up.
I went to college in San Antonio and Uber was banned for about a semester or so after it became the norm. Too many people started drunk driving again. For all intents and purposes, you either found a designated driver or didn't go out. Many choose the illegal third option.
No matter what the price, the fact that you CAN get a timely ride via ride sharing apps is a game changer here.
Subjective advantages which are not exclusive nor intrinsic to ride sharing services. They can be replicated by anyone in the industry if they are deemed as valuable to their business. I never denied they don't add value (for some), I'm saying that it is the hugely undercut pricing that is primarily driving this trend.
> p.s., why do people like you want to hate on ride sharing services so much? Is it just that nothing can ever be good enough in your mind?
Wow, generalize much? Who is "people like you" exactly? The answer to you question is pretty obvious if you put the snark aside: My problem is with the predatory pricing that companies like Uber are using. when I said their pricing is not sustainable that is exactly what I meant. In 5 years they will either be gone or will have raised their prices.
(Yes, I acknowledge you have a problem with the predatory pricing. I understand you. Was it not against taxis, I'd have a problem too, it's just that I hate taxis more than I hate powerful companies messing with small people. Yet, that does not make it any clear that the change is mostly due to prices.)
What a strange way to respond to valid criticism. Flip this: why do people like you refuse to see these issues? No one is saying that the Uber experience, app, upfront pricing, etc. is the issue. I think everyone is positive to those innovations in the market.
I've had one no show über driver, and when he didn't show another showed up in his place.
Where I live in Europe it's normal to have designated drivers at parties and it's socially unacceptable to pressure them into drinking. If someone offers you a drink, "I'm driving" is a no-questions-asked way to turn it down (same goes for "I'm pregnant" or "I'm a recovering alcoholic").
That doesn't seem to be the case in much of the US. But it's one of those things that are hard to judge from across the pond.
However, anecdotally "I'm driving" is now pretty much the best reason to give and not to be pressured into drinking. But that's just been my personal experience.
Purely supposition on my part but my guess is that the market ride sharing services are capturing are suburbanites who are actually paying $50 to go to NJ/LI/CT as opposed to driving - as it's hard to imagine many locals driving anywhere, let alone drunk driving. The staten island graph is curious though (does it mean there is no non-locals visiting?
Same with access to taxis… being able to just walk outside and find one vs in many other cities having to call one (and have their phone number already) and wait.
I'm thinking of selling my car just because of how well Uber works, and how expensive having a second car is (in Brazil at least).
I imagine there will be plenty of teething problems and horror stories, but I don't think it's an insoluble problem.
Disclaimer: This isn't an excuse for drink-driving, you should think about this before you go out, but clearly there are a lot of people who either don't think about it or can't help themselves.
- Taking the bus which didn't run anytime after 10pm
- Calling a friend which really only worked when you planned ahead
- Calling the local taxi service which was limited and was pretty expensive unless you had a ton of people riding with you. They did "drunk bus" kind of rides mostly.
Planning transportation (DD, drunk bus, etc) was really the only way to get home unless you just walked everywhere. The fraternities and sororities ran DD systems for their members and friends which I admired but couldn't take advantage of. After Uber came out, use exploded and the DUIs started going down.
But if you are the kind of person the police takes care of on a bench multiple times then it's within their (or rather the relevant authority, not the police) power to consider a person "unfit" for having a drivers license. Won't happen to "normal" people, even if on a bike.
You're still posing a traffic hazard.
For starters, I can usually go most places by bike without doing it on the same roads as cars. (I know that's rarely the case in the US though). If that's not possible, and you are so drunk you can't ride a bike (I can certainly ride a bike safer than a car while drunk simply because the speed is much slower so the reaction times are longer) - then leave the bike too. Walk or get a cab.
Situational awareness is an entirely different story though. In the dead of night traffic is on easy mode, where you notice the indirect illumination of a car's headlights around two corners and hear them from a mile away. That's just not very challenging (and probably plays a large role in the seemingly universal pattern of more drunk driving in rural areas, unfortunately cars come with an incredible amount of risk compensation through speed). Broad daylight city cycling on the other hand I consider a bad idea even at BAC levels well within the legal limits for driving cars (speaking of Germany here, where in terms of fines, cycling is tolerated at twice the BAC level as driving, a reasonable compromise)
Road traffic relies on cooperation between the participants. If you can't pull your own weight (i.e. follow traffic laws, control your vehicle, etc), you don't belong on the road.
Also it's not about yourself. Sure, if you kill yourself in an accident on a bicycle you're less likely to injure somebody else but you're still inflicting all kinds of harm on others.
Edit: My mistake, misread the text.
When I took the train up to Albany, I wanted a cab to a coffee shop across the bridge. It was a half hour walk vs a 7min car ride. The cab was flat rate into the city so it would have cost $20+ just to take me across the bridge. This would've been a sub-$10 ride in NYC. I walked it, despite the rain.
That's my experience at least. It's also cheaper in the end but with an uber you know pretty well when you'll be in the car.
It's not ride-hailing apps themselves. Has nothing to do with the fact that it's someone else's car or that you use an app instead of a phone number to order it.
It's the fact that you can get home now for $10 only waiting 5 minutes from the time you decided you want to leave.... compared to paying $60 and waiting an hour.
I also wouldn't overlook the novelty factor in the idea gaining traction. It took a mundane process (calling a dispatcher) and made it sleek, hip, and fun. Especially in the early days, when you'd meet a lot of diverse drivers, not just professionals. This made a huge difference in making Uber a 'thing', not just a marginally improved commodity service.
If going out downtown, it's a 80$ cab ride each way atleast.
Transit would take atleast an hour but good luck taking it back at 2am when service is very limited.
I could drive after drinking and spend 30-40 minutes.
There is no ride sharing allowed here yet.
I usually don't go out if I don't have a designated driver as it's just not affordable or takes too long.
Many friends, and I admit myself when younger, would have just drove home drunk as it was cheapest quickest option
We have actually found it cheaper to drive downtown, find a cheap decent hotel on priceline and drive back home after a good sleep.
I can't wait for ride sharing here, I use it everywhere else when traveling.
Ride sharing makes it affordable convenient and quick... Can definately see how it attributes to less drunk drivers.
BTW even with public transportation, if you're drunk enough to think it unsafe to drive, you're probably gonna want to use the restroom more often.
I've gone over this issue a LOT, and right now I'm planning to move to the city center and just take the hit of higher rent for now. Luckily, I am single so this is a lot more convenient than if you have a family with kids and stuff.
The major my suburb recently sent out a survey asking people what kind of building projects people would like to see. The granularity of what was being asked for was shocking. It should not be the government's task to decide if we need to build single family homes or multi family homes and if they are allowed to be town houses etc. I felt like I was in the Soviet Union.
The point is that you have to apply common sense to zoning, which given the countless comments about US zoning seems to be the difference.
Common sense (zoning, and other things):
Japanese Zoning :: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=8540845
The value that zoning provides is to segregate and disenfranchise the bulk of the populace, while spreading them out during the Cold War so as to make the US more resilient towards bombings supposedly. This is the same culture that thought sidewalks were bad.
>Matthew Festa [is] a land use professor in Houston...
>For all that’s been made of Houston’s infamous lack of zoning, Festa said it increasingly seems that reputation isn’t deserved or even accurate.
>“We do have a lot of land-use regulations,” Festa said. “We still have a lot of stuff that looks and smells like zoning.”
>To be more precise, Houston doesn’t exactly have official zoning. But it has what Festa calls “de facto zoning,” which closely resembles the real thing. “We’ve got a lot of regulations that in other cities would be in the zoning code,” Festa said. “When we use it here, we just don’t use the ‘z’ word.”
That being said, I might have waited longer, but I always got service when I did live in rural Broward. I was 20+ minutes from everything though, so it was a guaranteed high fare ride for the driver.
Also his variable for Uber is only a one or zero. It should instead be the number of drivers in the county.
They quotes a study done on only California that shows Uber reduces fatalities, but doesn't ask himself if maybe county by county is important. Instead he groups everything together, even some countries that have very few.
Here's the sentence that should indicate something is wrong with his analysis, he finds Uber increases fatalities (a noticably but not significant):
> This model shows that on average, the presence of Uber was associated with a 2.0% (95% confidence interval: 0.98, 1.06) increase in traffic fatalities among all drivers; however, this association was not statistically significant at conventional levels.
I think he definitely needs to break out the results data into county by county results to see if maybe there is a different result for maybe more populous counties.
"A recent increase in the ease and availability of alternative rides for intoxicated passengers partially explains the steep decrease in alcohol-related collisions in New York City since 2011.I examine the specific case of
Uber’s car service launch in New York Cityin May 2011,
a unique example of a sudden increase in cab availability for intoxicated passengers.7This study draws on a dataset of all New York State alcohol-related collisions maintained by the New York State Department of Motor Vehicles from 1989 through 2013. My inference is based on the variation in Uber access across New York State counties over time and the careful choice of New York State counties that provide an appropriate control group for New York City’s drunk-
Fair enough, looks like lyft only came to NYC around 2014. But does anyone know if the ride share prices in NYC from 2011  to now has significantly changed? I vaguely remember a lot of people using it initially because of dirt cheap prices during the first few month of introduction but I don't trust my memory over facts if someone has some.
Lyft doesn't seem to have even near that sort of penetration in other cities from what I've experienced.
That said, when I woke up the next day^Wmonth and saw the charges and the loop-de-loops they took to get me home, I complained and Uber refunded me the whole fare, which I didn't even ask for. If this was a cab and even with a credit card charge (forget about cash) I would have just written it off.
You would have to look at how the ride sharing services came about in different cities around the world.
The two most popular ways to measure those effects in economics are differences-in-differences (basically a clinical trial -- you need some very similar placebo city to compare it to) or regression discontinuity design (you need a fairly immediate effect, so assuming people learn to use uber this is out of the question).
Of course, the results are probably applicable to other ride-sharing schemes.
But I don't have a breakdown per-market.
There was a really detailed breakdown posted somewhere on HN a while ago but I don't have it offhand.