Friday, October 16, 2015

Uber Takes Toronto

Yesterday, my son pigged out on free Uber stuff.  It started with a free lunch delivered by Uber eats.  In the evening, he and his downtown friends found that there were special Uber cars (top line) giving away Air Miles cards.  They would wait until the special cars were free and then book them for a little trip.  They got hundreds of dollars.

Uber lives on causing downtown congestion for free.  This is a massive economic externality which should be captured.  It's because the cities have tried to capture this by taxi medallions, which is horrible and won't stand in court.  They can give all the bylaw tickets they want, but they'll all be squashed.

Uber will go all out in creating new congestion.  Soon you'll see mobile uber restaurants and hotels rented by the hour.  There is nothing to stop them.

The only solution is to release the taxis, and create a uniform congestion charge.  This can be done with smart phones, no need for a major corrupt computer infrastructure.  In fact, that's a great idea for a Palo Alto startup!  Give the cities a means to fight Uber free-riding.  Of course, nobody running cities has any brains.  Too bad.  :)

Also, all this Uber stuff means that young people will sell a kidney to get a job downtown!

No comments: