Not enough like Twitter.

Aug 21 leon commented on Uber Hires a Big Shot, Starts Delivering Goods—Are They Trying to Take Over the World?.
Uber cut its fares by roughly 50%, taking money right out of their drivers pockets. These are full time drivers trying to make a living on starvation rates. Uber can do this because the drivers are mis-classified as independent contractors, not employees. Even though Uber can deauthorize (fire) them at will, change the conditions of their relationship with the company, cut rates as they feel like it, and at times Uber even pays them an hourly guarantee. But somehow they are not considered employees, so they have no unemployment, or other employee legally mandated benefits. Uber's model is perfect for venture capitalist investors. Uber has shifted all the risk of the business to the drivers who they have the gall to call "partners", and yet those "partners" have no voice in their own business. Exploitation in the 21st century.
Apr 11 leon commented on Drivers Decry "Predatory" Uber.
You put your ride out there, and if someone gets in your car and is drunk or high or just thinks that they are having a good time by giving you a bad rating, you lose your right to drive. No recourse. If you get a legitimate poor rating(s) then you should have the right and chance to improve rather than just being deactivated. The drivers have no voice yet they assume a large share of the risk. This system benefits Uber investors, often at the expense of the driver who struggles to make ends meet. If Uber gets their way and there are no caps, Uber will still make lots of money, but the drivers will starve because there is simply not enough business to keep unlimited amounts of drivers on the road earning money. A cruel lesson to learn after you have invested what little you have based on what Uber, sidecar and lyft recruiters tell you.
Apr 11 leon commented on Drivers Decry "Predatory" Uber.
That's right, they buy a car configured to Uber's specifications. If they are deactivated they lose their ability to work. There is no labor relations policy at Uber. The Drivers are not employees, and Uber is not a transportation company. Uber supplies an app, that's it.

The question is who do we want to be setting the public transportation policies in our community. Should it be all of us that live here through our elected officials, or should Uber, Lyft and Sidecar bring in boatloads of money to overturn a City Council decision and set the rules to benefit their investors.
Nov 4, 2013 leon commented on Unintended Consequences.
It seems so odd that people talk about the unintended consequences of giving workers a raise, as if putting more money in the economy is a bad thing. Yet when a CEO of a large corporation, drives the company into the ground and hundreds if not thousands of workers lose their jobs, and then that same CEO walks away with a golden parachute bonus, somehow that's not a bad thing?
Aug 5, 2013 leon commented on KIRO Tells Cabbies: "Take a Shower.".
Whoever those people are who have a radio platform to spew out hateful, useless comments and insult others, they would better serve the community by making an apology. Their comments were truly disgusting and uncalled for.

Speaking about the credit card issue; since each cab is an independent business, every time a credit card is used it is mostly processed by the dispatch companies who charge a hefty processing fee. Some drivers are using square to control that cost. But they are no different than any other merchant. In my dry cleaner there is a sign telling me that they won't accept debit or credit cards for purchases less than $10.00.

These drivers are not scared of competition, but they are regulated more stringently than any of the other services. They are simply asking for the existing rules and regulations to be enforced.
Apr 15, 2013 leon commented on The War on Cabs.
The system is indeed broken. It is regulated by the State, the Port of Seattle, King County and the City of Seattle. Overlapping rules and lack of enforcement are major issues. Metered taxi drivers have their rates set by the city, and are forced to compete in an unregulated environment with the flat rate cars who can charge what they like. the credit card issue is real, in part because their dispatch companies, who they are required by law to be part of, rip them off to the the tune of up to 5% processing fee per charge. Some of the drivers are moving to square and other options. But to understand what they are up against, all drivers start their week in debt. For many airport taxi's that means they can start each week at the high end as much as $1,000.00 in the hole. In other words they make no money until they make their "nut". They work 12 hours a day, 6 days a week. They have no health insurance, no sick leave, nothing really. they are classified as independent contractors, but are often treated as employees with few if any rights. This is a system that exploits the people working in it for the benefit of a few at the top of the heap. Don't blame the driver who is often working 12 hours a day, 6 to 7 days a week, and to somehow insinuate that because they are largely immigrants that they do not like you, is insulting and simply not true.

Taxis, are a vital part of our transportation system, and the people working in that system deserve, at the very least to be treated with respect. The majority are recent immigrants or refugees trying to make it in the US. A few have succeeded nicely, the others just want to earn a decent living to be able to support their families and provide a decent life for their children. No different than anyone else.

The metered taxi drivers have formed the Western Washington Taxi Cab Operators Association with the Teamsters Union to provide a voice to the people doing the work in the industry. Its a voice that has been lacking in the past when the dialog was dominated by the dispatch companies. The Association is working to improve the working conditions of the operators and to improve the experience of the consumers. This is a time of game changing technological advances with Uber, Taxi magic, Side Car etc. The workers in the industry are organizing with their Association to meet and adapt to the changes that are here and are accelerating. Their goal is to provide decent transportation to the public, what's lacking is that the regulations that govern the industry are no longer functioning, creating a system where people working in the industry are finding it more and more difficult to make a living. That situation, if allowed to continue will not benefit anyone.
More...
Apr 11, 2013 leon commented on It's True, Seattle Cabs Suck.
The system is indeed broken. It is regulated by the State, the Port of Seattle, King County and the City of Seattle. Overlapping rules and lack of enforcement are major issues. Metered taxi drivers have their rates set by the city, and are forced to compete in an unregulated environment with the flat rate cars who can charge what they like. the credit card issue is real, in part because their dispatch companies, who they are required by law to be part of, rip them off to the the tune of up to 5% processing fee per charge. Some of the drivers are moving to square and other options. But to understand what they are up against, all drivers start their week in debt. For many airport taxi's that means they can start each week at the high end as much as $1,000.00 in the hole. In other words they make no money until they make their "nut". They work 12 hours a day, 6 days a week. They have no health insurance, no sick leave, nothing really. they are classified as independent contractors, but are often treated as employees with few if any rights. This is a system that exploits the people working in it for the benefit of a few at the top of the heap. Don't blame the driver who is often working 12 hours a day, 6 to 7 days a week, and to somehow insinuate that because they are largely immigrants that they do not like you, is insulting and simply not true.

Taxis, are a vital part of our transportation system, and the people working in that system deserve, at the very least to be treated with respect. The majority are recent immigrants or refugees trying to make it in the US. A few have succeeded nicely, the others just want to earn a decent living to be able to support their families and provide a decent life for their children. No different than anyone else.

The metered taxi drivers have formed the Western Washington Taxi Cab Operators Association with the Teamsters Union to provide a voice to the people doing the work in the industry. Its a voice that has been lacking in the past when the dialog was dominated by the dispatch companies. The Association is working to improve the working conditions of the operators and to improve the experience of the consumers. This is a time of game changing technological advances with Uber, Taxi magic, Side Car etc. The workers in the industry are organizing with their Association to meet and adapt to the changes that are here and are accelerating. Their goal is to provide decent transportation to the public, what's lacking is that the regulations that govern the industry are no longer functioning, creating a system where people working in the industry are finding it more and more difficult to make a living. That situation, if allowed to continue will not benefit anyone.
More...
Apr 5, 2013 leon commented on If You're Having Trouble Hailing a Cab Right Now....
The system is indeed broken. It is regulated by the State, the Port of Seattle, King County and the City of Seattle. Overlapping rules and lack of enforcement are major issues. Metered taxi drivers have their rates set by the city, and are forced to compete in an unregulated environment with the flat rate cars who can charge what they like. the credit card issue is real, in part because their dispatch companies, who they are required by law to be part of, rip them off to the the tune of up to 5% processing fee per charge. Some of the drivers are moving to square and other options. But to understand what they are up against, all drivers start their week in debt. For many airport taxi's that means they can start each week at the high end as much as $1,000.00 in the hole. In other words they make no money until they make their "nut". They work 12 hours a day, 6 days a week. They have no health insurance, no sick leave, nothing really. they are classified as independent contractors, but are often treated as employees with few if any rights. This is a system that exploits the people working in it for the benefit of a few at the top of the heap.

Taxis, are a vital part of our transportation system, and the people working in that system deserve, at the very least to be treated with respect. The majority are recent immigrants or refugees trying to make it in the US. A few have succeeded nicely, the others just want to earn a decent living to be able to support their families and provide a decent life for their children. No different than anyone else.

The metered taxi drivers have formed the Western Washington Taxi Cab Operators Association with the Teamsters Union to provide a voice to the people doing the work in the industry. Its a voice that has been lacking in the past when the dialog was dominated by the dispatch companies. the Association is working to improve the working conditions of the operators and the consumers. This is a time of game changing technological advances with Uber, Taxi magic, Side Car etc. The workers in the industry are organizing with their Association to meet and adapt to the changes that are here and are accelerating.
More...
Nov 16, 2009 leon commented on Move Over, Breast Milk.
where are the kittens?
Jun 26, 2009 leon commented on What's Up with Maria Cantwell?.
I am a Democrat, and I was please when she beat Gorton, however, Senator Cantwell is routinely inaccessible to meet with constiutients. She has demonstrated time and time again that she has a deaf ear when it comes to issues that adversely impact Washington families. Getting through to her is just about impossible. I don't know why she gets elected
 
 

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