Friday, May 02, 2014

Counterforce vs. Uber, let's call someone a sociopath because we don't like them.

These counterforce people are disgusting.  It starts with an accusation that the Theta Xi fraternity is a" pool of misogynists, rapists, and business contacts,", as though those three were equivalent.  Although I'm pretty sure I know which group they're really upset by.  They don't link to any evidence of a Theta Xi member raping anyone, let alone that Theta Xi members are more likely to rape someone.

"His first venture was a knock-off Napster, designed to divert money from the music industry and into his own pockets."
Because the music industry is full of people who deserve the money they get.

"At an early age, Kalanick became convinced that competition was the only force that could motivate him to do anything, "

"But to this foolish young capitalist, his defeat was only fuel to his blossoming free-market ideology."
Yes he's so foolish not to have accepted defeat and given up on being an entrepreneur.  It's not like he sold a company for 15 million dollars.  Oh wait he did.  But it's not like he started another company that's rapidly growing and profitable, oh wait, he did.  Yeah they're right, that Kalanick guy is a moron.

"In his twisted imagination, he ascribed this success solely to himself and his ability to compete, ignoring the fact that he was harvesting the natural urge of people to share with each other and converting that human desire into revenue."
Did he say anything at all to even suggest that he believed this?  Or is this just counterforce being arrogant twats who don't feel they have to do any research and can just ascribe opinions to people?

"For six years he extracted capital from all the people trusting enough to use his services."
So did any of those "trusting" people regret trusting him?  Because if they didn't then why use the word "trusting"?  Logically anyone who uses a service trusts the service provided to some extent.  Counterforce doesn't feel the need to show that the trust was unearned or betrayed, because to them, merely making money is evil.

"He seems to believe that his inner capitalist strength is the prime generator of all his wealth, and in this regard he is no different than any of the other Uber Men of the tech world."
His "inner capitalist" is the prime generator of all his wealth.  How did all that wealth get generated?  By customers using the services that were available SOLELY because he made the decision to provide them. And that's why counterforce hates him, because they can't even begin to equal his achievement and they know it.

"This Uber Man trampled on gods, morals, everything that kept him from becoming what he was: a dancing star, born of chaos."
And that has what to do with Kalanick?  What morals has he trampled on, let alone what gods?

"In the three short years since then, Uber has made significant headway towards creating more and more service jobs catering to the ruling classes. "
And that's bad, because it's far more important to not cater to the ruling classes than to create jobs so people can eat.  Of course it's news to the average Uber user that they're part of the "ruling class", probably because counterforce made that bit up.

"Kalnick views the contractors who generate his sacred capital as expendable pawns. If a driver suddenly drops from a 4.8 driving score to a 4.7, they are terminated without any explanation. "
Actually I think a drop in a performance measurement is an explanation.

"In this competitive atmosphere, drivers are constantly fiddling with their smart phones and stressing about their next fare. During one such moment, a money-obsessed driver ploughed into a mother and her children on the streets of San Francisco. "
Actually there appears to be no evidence that he was checking his smartphone at the time, and if he was it's incredibly irresponsible since he was making a turn.  Far from encouraging this behaviour Uber AUTOMATICALLY suspend people who are involved in a "serious police matter".  So how is Kalanick responsible for someone else's negligence?

"Since then, Uber has assumed liability for its drivers at all times, but we want to assure Kalanick that the ghost of Sofia will never leave him. Kalanick doesn’t seem to notice her, however."
Well that's probably because there's no evidence it's his fault.  If Uber drivers were shown to be more dangerous than regular drivers or taxi drivers he might have reason to feel guilty.  But to blame him because one of the hundreds of drivers he employs had a fatal accident is absurd.  By that standard every CEO of every large transport corporation, no matter how careful and conscious of safety, would eventually have to collapse in tears of guilt.

" Jen is the Seattle Community Manager for Uber and seems to be very dedicated to the CEO and the company."
Well yes, it would be strange if the PR manager didn't seem devoted.

"Over 36,000 people in Seattle signed their names on pieces of paper provided by Jen and her minions. 630,000 people live in the city, and only a minority of them use Uber. "
So they got 5.7% of the cities population to sign a petition.  That suggests that either Seattle is a VERY drunk town or they didn't get them all in bars.  In any case surely the fact that 5.7% of the population signed a petition says something about the popularity of Uber.  Like maybe people think it's a bloody good idea?

"By marketing itself as way to get shitfaced drunk and then get home safely, Uber is hoping to clean the pockets of everyone who wants to feel free on a night like this one. "
Oh no, they're marketing themselves as a way to do something that they actually are a way to do.  Horrors!

"On top of the forty dollars they might spend on booze and food, the average Saturday night drunk can now spend another thirty on an Uber cab."
Which is so much worse than spending the money for a regular cab that it takes an hour to find.

"Without the desire to escape produced by this sick capitalist society, Uber would be lacking in drunks to ferry home every night."
Ok, let's assume for a moment that the only, or even the main, reason someone would drink too much to safely drive is our sick capitalist society.  Did he create said society?  No.  Would it still exist even if he didn't offer a convenient way to get home without driving drunk?  Yes.  So how is it his fault?

"But of course none of the success of Uber has anything to do with the passengers, or with their misery,"
I'm pretty sure Kalanick is aware that his success has to do with customers.  People who launch more than one successful business venture tend to be aware of the importance of customers to their success.

"or with Jen’s fierce and terrifying identification with her CEO. "
Yes it's so terrifying that Jen says good things about the guy who pays her to say good things about his business.  It's like she's a monster.

"Burgess, Bagshaw, and Rasmussen were the only council members to oppose the cap. Nevertheless, despite their allegiances and power plays, it was the capitalists that decided the matter for the City of Seattle, not the other way around."
Citation needed.  The "City of Seattle" or rather 9 people who think they can use force in it's name, decided the issue.  The fact that Counterforce doesn't distinguish between "the City of Seattle" and the government of Seattle is a hint that they're not anarchists.  But let's examine the facts.  Uber came with a petition with tens of thousands of signatures.  Six out of 9 councilors decided to not limit their activity.  How is that the capitalists deciding the matter?   It's pretty much democracy in action.  Of course Counterforce is so utterly ignorant or dishonest that they didn't mention the influence of the traditional cab companies, who I'm sure tried to get the cap passed.  Of course these "anarchists" try to solve problems by using government force, so you can't expect consistency.

" Travis Kalanick wants to undermine every City Hall he encounters and render its laws meaningless. "
And that's bad how?  Let's look at precisely what laws he wants to "undermine".  They are laws specifically set up to privilege capital at the expense of labour.  Now I think Marx is an idiot and his categories largely meaningless.  Nevertheless in this we see a literal Marxist class struggle between the cab companies and those who wish to sell taxi-driving services.  Between labour and capital.  Capital wishes to restrict competition so that they can keep profits artificially high.  Labour just wants to work for what their services are worth.  Counterforce is on the side of capital.  Worse they're on the side of capitalized State-provided privilege.

" But in the end, he wants the laws to favor him and him alone."
No, he actually wants the laws to be neutral towards him.  He isn't demanding a restriction on competition, or hundreds of millions in government loans or guarantees, or that the city build him a stadium and rent it to him at below commercial rates.  He's simply asking that he be allowed to sell something somebody wants.

" Like the besieged capitalists in The Fountainhead and Atlas Shrugged, people like Travis Kalanick will compete with everyone on their way to the top, "
Because competing with people is bad somehow.

"trampling on their workers"
How is he trampling on the workers?  As I understand it the people who work for him are quite happy with the pay and conditions.  Or do you mean the workers employed by his competitors?  Are you saying that providing a better service at lower cost is "trampling" on those who provide a worse one at higher cost?  That's insane.  It's not his fault that the taxi companies can't provide what's wanted at a reasonable price.  Nor is it his fault that the workers in those taxi companies don't get the money they deserve.  Nothing stops those drivers from switching to working for Uber, and many are.  But even if they couldn't, why does the travelling public owe them a living?  Why do they get to say "I know you can get a ride better and quicker somewhere else, but you should pay me anyway, because I deserve it.". If counterforce is so concerned about the workers why have they NOT ONCE mentioned the $400K price of a taxi medallion?  Scrapping the need for that would free up thousands of dollars a year in unneeded finance costs that could go to the drivers.  Yet this is not mentioned.

"With the click of a button, Kalanick will completely destabilize and undermine African immigrant communities in Seattle. "
"Dozens of cab owners are currently threatened by the unrestrained expansion of Uber,"
I very much doubt African immigrants could afford the $400K medallion.  If counterforce really cares about the poor immigrants they had DECADES to protest the unfair medallion system.  They did not.  Therefore they don't give a damn about the poor Africans.

" If you hate arbitrary authority, if you know how to share, and if you want the people around you to be safe, you’re probably an anarchist."
Says someone who a) lauded the attempt to impose arbitrary authority, b) is actively opposing a way to share, and c) has not even tried to find out what is safest.

Finally, on a personal note.  You're scum.  Seriously that you would use the death of an innocent to stop poor people getting jobs, with no evidence for your view of what caused her death, makes you the lowest of fascist sympathizers.  And yes, I said fascist, for that is what you advanced in practice.

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