We are developing the social individualist meta-context for the future. From the very serious to the extremely frivolous... lets see what is on the mind of the Samizdata people.

Samizdata, derived from Samizdat /n. - a system of clandestine publication of banned literature in the USSR [Russ.,= self-publishing house]

Government to ban Uber in London

In 8 days time.


Lots of people – including some Uber supporters – saying stupid things.

Talking of which, I see Sargon of Akkad – he of This Week in Stupid – has been “unpublished” on Facebook.

What a shit day.

14 comments to Government to ban Uber in London

  • Chip

    So the government has banned Uber because – according to most supportive comments I’ve seen – it employs illegal and legal immigrants who don’t speak English and attack their passengers. In effect the government should ban useful employment for people that the same government is responsible for bringing g into the country.

    Second point. Technology has made such rapid gains partly because much of it is new and outside the immediate jurisdiction of regulators. But where it does bump up against bureaucracy (Uber and Airbnb) new tech is hit with the same self-interested troglodyte meddling we see everywhere else.

    Uber is big because people want to pay for it. And no voluntary transaction between free people shall go unpunished.

  • Mr Ed

    Do Uber dispute the factual basis of the ban, i.e. the alleged incidents? I write as a one-time Private Hire Driver and from what I recall in my long-past student days, the onerous hand of the licensing officers was always at the back of the operator’s mind.

    Taxis are individuals so all those Black Cab Taxi driver rapists etc. are just individuals.

    Wasn’t Devolution to London a profoundly silly idea?

  • Alisa

    ‘Fuckers’ and ‘a shitty day’ are both seconded.

  • Johnathan Pearce (London)

    If the closure is about alleged incidents (I doubt it as Khan had moaned about the threat to black cabs for some time) then here is a thought: Uber brought in tens of thousands of new drivers into the taxi market. So even if a small percentage of those drivers were bad, then, other things being equal, there would be more alleged incidents involving Uber drivers than traditional, less plentiful black cab drivers as a simple matter of logic. The difference is that, because of the audit trail involved in booking via Uber, it is more easy than before for a person to lodge a complaint.

    When we revert to the “good old days” of waiting in the pouring rain for ages in the hope of getting a cab, late at night, in a dodgy neighbourhood, I am sure there will be a warm glow of goodwill towards City Hall at getting rid of a nasty American firm that had a Germanic name and came via an App.

    Even so, the clever idea of melding GPS and mobile phone apps to create such a business through the “gig” economy is not going to be easily destroyed.

  • Statistically small number of Uber drivers do bad things. Response: ban Uber.

    Is it permitted to apply this logic to other groups?

  • Paul Marks

    I am not sure what you mean by “stupid things” Patrick – if I have said some “stupid things” in supporting Uber by bringing up the basic principles of the Common Law (that every school boy used to know) I am sorry.

    As for “Sargon” – yes he is a social liberal, of the 20th century sort. His politics are similar to David Lloyd-George (in short I am vastly more “reactionary” than he is) and yet the internet companies are treating him as some sort of evil-space-monster.

    The really no good these Corporate people (who go straight from universities into company management) especially the “left coast” internet company crowd.

    The only fault in “Sargon” is that he swears to much – which can be bore.

    But that is not the reason the Facebook leftists have banned him – they have banned him because he is not a Frankfurt School Marxist like them.

    It really is weird – all these Big Business managers backing the Marxists so much.

    And then we had the Florence speech……..

  • Paul Marks

    Yes Mr Ed – devolution to London was a silly idea, and to Wales and Scotland as well.

    But devolution is fashionable (the academics and officials back it) so we are going to get more and more of it.

    And no one points out that that the powers that are “devolved” (devolved to some of the most corrupt people in the country – big city bosses and so on) should not exist in the first place.

  • Paul Marks

    Of course there should be no such thing as a “license” – for this, or any other form of peaceful and honest trade.

  • Thailover

    Paul, Agreed. “License” is an alternative spelling for “permit”, (short for Permission). No delusions…a “license” is government permission, nothing more, nothing less.


    My mainstays on youtube are Sargon, Styxhexenhammer666 and Stephan Mollyneux.

    Stephan is insane, but has the occasional interesting idea. He’s interesting to listen to except when he prattles, which is often.

    Sargon is very much a “liberal”, but is pretty solid on other issues. I love how much he “triggers” the uber-feminists.

    It’s frightening how in-sync “Wizard” Styx and I are in politics, world view and very odd ball side interests. To say that he’s genuinely eccentric is an understatement. The irony is that this ex-satanist and now pagan looks like shirtless Jesus…wearing a leather jacket…inside the house.

  • Mr Ed

    Let no one suggest that this ban has anything to do with Mayor Khan speaking at the Labour Party Conference next week, after initially being denied a slot. The timing must be a co-incidence.

    And Uber, from the USA in 2016, here’s a ‘wordcloud’ Saunders/Clinton split of their workforce political donations, the guys who do the work to Saunders, the managers to Clinton.

    I have no data on a Trump/Cruz donation split, maybe $10 and $20?

  • Patrick Crozier

    When I suggested that even some of Uber’s supporters were saying stupid things what I was referring to was the claim that 40,000 people who be put out of work at a stroke. (At least, I think I was). My understanding is that there are other platforms.

    Another suggested that it was all due to Brexit.

  • Cameron

    I’m a committed free-marketeer so initially had this same reaction to the Uber ban, but a chat with the man who regularly picks me up from the airport has made me think again. He says that he has friends who drive for Uber who also obtain their cars and insurance via Uber (maybe a bad idea…) and, despite driving 50 hours a week, end up with less than £300 a week (after the car & insurance costs are deducted). This in turn means that they qualify for income support. If those figures are right then I would find it more difficult to support a service which uses the benefits system to undercut existing operators.

    His other point is that TFL merely wants to delay Uber’s operations until this policy comes into force in April 2018, at which point the financial model will look quite different: http://www.cityam.com/272173/transport-london-quietly-increased-cost-ubers-licence

  • Andrew Duffin

    Socialist power imposes rules favouring its clients and disadvantaging enterprising newcomers?

    Next up – the sylvan lavatorial habits of large ursine mammals.