“Shared Economy is also known as collaborative consumption or collaborative economy or peer economy. It refers to a hybrid market model of a peer-to-peer exchange. Such transactions are often facilitated via community-based online services.”–Wikipedia
Uber has an incredible history of positive disruption and has been the single biggest player in the transformation of the car service industry. “Getting to work reliably is a concern for many, and today’s discussion was incredibly beneficial as Uber looks toward retooling how people get to work and provide for their families.–Rep Tom Reed
“Positive disruption,” what is that? “Car service industry,” “incredible beneficial,” what can Tom mean?
We’re growing as we’re talking about it. –Patrick Lyden, Uber federal policy representative
Lyden and Reed also discussed how the tax code needs to be restructured to reflect the changing economy that would mirror how businesses like Uber are employing individuals.
We need to modernize the tax code to recognize that there is a portion of this workforce that wants to work in a flexible way, Lyden said.
Wants to work in a flexible way, or can’t find a full time job with benefits that pays a living wage?
Reed used the term “back packing” as it relates to individuals maintaining their earned benefits who might work for multiple employers. He said current work with the tax code will attempt to reflect those individuals with jobs like that of Uber.
By “reflect those individuals” what might Tom mean?
The Post-Journal article isn’t clear: when Tom talks tax law changes, what problem does he mean to solve? Does he want to help Uber, their drivers, riders, or the Treasury? If the discussion with Uber was “incredibly beneficial,” whom did it help? Tom may have accidentally chosen the right word–much of what he says is incredible.
Well, one thing you can always count on with Tom: he doesn’t have much of a way with words. (Look up “disruption” in your thesaurus….every synonym has a negative connotation. “Positive disruption” is as much an oxymoron as “productive congressman.”) The downside of Uber and every one of its iterations in the gig economy is that it’s a terrible deal for the people doing the actual work. My future son-in-law drove for Uber in NYC for about a year, so I know whereof I speak. It’s just another extension of our collective addiction to cheap stuff, but meanwhile, the company’s insistence that they’re an app and not a transportation service leaves traditional cab and livery companies very much in the competitive dust, as those businesses still have to pay all the fees that Uber ought to have to pay (also have a client who owns a transportation company and trust me, those fees and insurances are onerous, not to mention the cost difference in having actual employees vs the independent contractors that Uber classifies its workers as) with the result that the only people making money are the guys at the top at Uber. So much for small-business-friendly! A real solution here would be to get serious about investing in infrastructure and solid public transportation (have I mentioned how much Uber adds to congestion on city streets?), both of which would add jobs, as well as getting serious about paying people a living wage so that we can get out of this race to the bottom we’ve been locked in.
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