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Showing posts from 2016
Uncle Block - Amateur Sleuth By now I'm sure you have heard of the mortgage fraud committed by the couple in Toronto. If not, you can find the details here. With nothing better to do, I decided I would go to work and apply my own amateur internet sleuthing skills to this problem. I've already seen this done on several exciting spy movies. I decided to start with the female suspect. Take a look at the image below. First off, I would like to say that it strikes me as being a little bit strange that someone looking like this could get a mortgage in the first place. If I saw someone like this heading toward my cab I would be quickly contemplating evasive maneuvers. If escape was impossible I would definitely be asking for cash up front. So I uploaded this image to Google's image search app to see if I could help the police out a bit. Man, did Google ever return a lot of possible suspects. Some of them were easily dismissable because they were the wrong gender, or were de…
Uber Drivers are Refusing Short Fares! An Uber driver sits airing his foot out the window. Making too much money? I sense such bittersweet irony as I sit back and watch Uber Taxi stumble as it baby-steps into the realities of the industry it intends to dominate. Going back a couple of years I recall the indignant calls to radio talk shows when every citizen who ever had an issue with a taxi driver would call in and air their grievances. One of the common complaints involved the number of times passengers would approach the first taxi in a queue, only to be refused service if they were not going far enough. There was never any attempt to probe this issue in any depth to discover the cause of the problem. The cause, by the way, in that case, was negligent government regulation. Specifically, the senseless issuance of licenses into a market that had long since passed the saturation point. Uber was supposed to fix all of that. Now that we have had a few years to study the evolution …
Do Uber taxi drivers commit more sex assaults?Incentives Matter You kinda gotta expect it. I mean, superficially, there ought to be no statistical disparity between the number of small and independent taxi drivers and the number of corporate Uber taxi drivers who commit sexual assaults. Employees of both the politically favored Uber and the maligned incumbent taxi operators will often find themselves in the proximity of vulnerable people. Yet the news reports continue to stream in about Uber cabbies assaulting their customers. Is it real? Or just an anomaly? I see one significant difference, though, between Uber cabbies, and those who complied with government taxi industry mandates. The average non-Uber taxi driver enters the trade as a means to a livelihood. He obtains a license. It costs him time and money. It becomes a thing of value to him. He doesn't want to take unnecessary risks by preying on, rather than serving, customers. HE DOESN'T WANT TO LOSE HIS TAXI LICENSE.…

Hilarious Comments from an Uber Spokesperson!

This is Uber's idea of effective public relations? "Susie Heath, a spokesperson for Uber Canada, tells us they’ve worked with law enforcement agencies to help build a series of tips for consumers. (I.E. Uber customers.) Tips include sitting in the back seat so you can easily exit the car in case of emergency, following your intuition, planning ahead by letting family & friends know where you are, giving Uber feedback and being respectful in your driver’s car." Try to imagine any other corporation feeling the need to "work with law enforcement agencies" in order to protect the public from their own employees! It might take the form of a large poster installed at every Walmart entrance. Without Uber, I couldn't make this stuff up. I mean, I can understand why some pharmaceutical companies might be required to inform the public that the use of their product might result in anal leakage, but, have standards dropped so low that companies now have to wa…
What happens in a taxi, stays in a taxi. When you choose Uber, God is watching. After Uber blew onto the scene I was stunned to experience something I never expected to happen. I found myself entirely at odds with my own home political movement, the libertarians. I was called a "hypocrite," a "Luddite," and a "parasite," because I dared point out the fact that Uber did NOT represent a pivotal point in the libertarian battle for human freedom. While a majority of libertarians and free market conservatives were creaming their jeans over the Uber phenomenon, I was pointing out that Uber was NOT about deregulation of the taxi industry, but about changing the regulations in order to create a lop-sided, two-tiered regulatory system with a whole new set of rules designed to guaranty success to Uber and failure to every other taxi company. For decades, I have experienced a growing disgust and loathing for politicians. My analysis reveals that most politicians…

Travis Uber is the 21st Century Version of Tom Sawyer.

Back in 1987 when I worked for the Du Pont Corporation, the company would compensate me for the cost of using my own vehicle at a rate of 25 cents per kilometer. That's equivalent to 40 cents per mile in Canadian dollars. The equivalent in U.S. dollars at $1 CDN = $.75 U.S. would be about 30 cents, U.S. per mile. Any decent company that asks its employees to use their personal cars for business will offer fair compensation for the use of that vehicle. Even the government offers compensation. Janis Rogers's round trip consumed 397 X 2 = 794 miles. If Uber were to offer its employees fair compensation for the use of their own cars, at 1987 levels, this sweet li'l ol' granny should have received 794 X $.30 = $238 for the use of her car on this assignment. If she were to be paid for her 15.5 hours at, say, $7.00 per hour she would receive an additional $108.50. That would achieve a grand total payout of $346.5. Instead, she says she made about $9 per hour (=139.50…

Poor Uber drivers are whining. (A profanity-free Blockrant.)

From the Uber driver's forum, "Made 9$ today in 3hours
I got three pings
One I took was 4.9
The two I skipped on were both pax under 4.4." I have been predicting this outcome all along. I knew from the start that Uber's much-praised "business model" would result in misery and disaster for ALL cab drivers. Uber is NOT about technology and it is NOT about a free market revolution. It's about corporate manipulation of the taxi business via a broken political system. Nothing has changed in the cab business since it was regulated in London in 1654. In a free country, dominated by pure laissez-faire free markets, there would be plenty of alternative employment opportunities. Such huge disparities between the incomes of low-skilled, low investment employees, and the wages of the rest of the employed population, as we are now seeing happen to all cab drivers, whether they work for Uber or less politically privileged taxi brokers, would not exist. Unfortu…
Block Report: Hamilton's War on the Car a Stunning Success! This past week the City of Hamilton has provided us with a spectacular display of the quality of thinking that goes on at our City Hall. Something the city planners could not accomplish after spewing millions of dollars into an increasingly creative array of impediments to vehicular traffic, from two-way streets, to crackhead bicycle lanes, to artificial potholes, etc., appears to have been accomplished by mother nature with a mere shifting of the ground adjacent to the Claremont Access.
The gridlock the City politicians have been slyly implementing for the last quarter of a century was doubled in an instant with the closure of the downbound lanes of the Claremont Access. One commenter on the Hamilton Spectator's report on the closure states:

"Almost speechless... i am utterly disappointed, i work at 2 locations and used the up. James access daily, which should only take me a 8 min drive home, It took me over an…
I have a loved who has been targeted by one of the ACTION teams the Spec article talks about. The table below contains a rundown of the fines he got over a period of time. In 2010 he was 17 years old. In 2010 he became the victim of a serious illness. Notices of Fines and Offence Dates from the Ontario Court of Justice






DateOffenceAmt. Due.Total



March 31, 2010LIQUOR ILLEGAL PLACE$130.00$130.00March 31, 2010UNDER 19 YEARS HAVE LIQUOR$130.00$260.00March 31, 2010SOLICIT NEAR TRANSIT STOP$70.00$330.00April 6, 2010ENTER PREM WHEN PROH$70.00$400.00April 10, 2010ENTER PREM WHEN PROH$70.00$470.00October 4, 2010ENGAGE IN PROHIBITED ACTIVITY$70.00$540.00November 8, 2010SOLICIT NEAR PUB. TRANSIT STOP$70.00$610.00July 22, 2012SOLICIT NEAR VEH/IN PARKING LOT$70.00$680.00November 15, 2012ENGAGE IN PROHIBITED ACTIVITY$70.00

Uber and the Surveilance Society

Yeah, this is just great. As we move headlong into the total surveillance, totally cashless, and eventually private-car-less, driver-less, computer-controlled, collectivist transportation network so loved by crypto-communists, anti-human climate change hoaxers, and their parasitical corporate donors and beneficiaries.... ..... Uber unabashedly promotes itself by bragging that its marvelous technology allows its zombie acolytes to, "5. Retrace your steps Classes, practices, clubs, parties—it’s a lot to keep track of. Luckily, your Uber receipts provide a record of everywhere you’ve been and what time." For one thing, who cares about "keeping track" of the stuff you've ALREADY DONE? The NSA? Before local governments mandated spy cameras for all non-Uber taxis they were fairly private conveyances. Since these cameras are only accessed in response to reported incidents, privacy in cabs is still very secure, especially for those who pay with cash. What h…
Alicia Machado As I watch this interview (at 7:12 right now) I am wondering what, if anything, the CBC has "reported" about this Alicia Machado thing. When I finish watching the interview I will check the CBC website and report back. (I expect the usual CBC infovomit, by the way. Let's see if I am correct.) Ok. So now I will check what the CBC has to report on the matter. Well, lookee here. Right off the bat we get this headline... Trump shames ex-beauty queen for sexual history Yep. Just as I expected, and I am only on the second paragraph and I am already puking. Get this fucking line, " USA Today broke with its tradition of not taking sides in elections with an editorial that said the Republican candidate is "unfit for the presidency." Greg Hunter at U.S.A Watchdog.com has been pointing out just how disgustingly one-sided U.S.A. Today's reporting has been for some time now. The claim that U.S.A. Today has only just now "broken with tradi…
Funny that this news report should come up today! Earlier this week, I was considering ordering one of Trump's red "Make America Great Again" baseball caps. Then I thought better of the idea by realizing it might turn me into a lightning rod for verbal or physical abuse by diversity-loving tolerant leftists. The same thought applied earlier in regard to getting a pro Trump bumper sticker for my car. Remember that scene in one of the "Die Hard" films where Bruce Willis found himself in a ghetto neighbourhood wearing a sandwich board? That was pretty funny twenty years ago. Fast forward to today and all you have to do is visit that same neighbourhood with a sign saying, "All Lives Matter." .... or even a "Make America Great Again" baseball cap. Is this what we call "progress?" Can you spot the Samuel Jackson character in this video? "The SA was also used to intimidate any opposition." 15 Questions White People…
The City of Ottawa, Uber, and Unbridled Political Sleaze On August 12, 2016, the Ottawa Citizen reported that "Ottawa taxi drivers launch $215M lawsuit against city." [Source.] The suit was launched in response to Ottawa's decision to allow the global taxi company, Uber, to set up its taxi operation the city without having to jump over the barriers to entry that the city had set up fifty years earlier and which all other taxi providers were required to overcome. On September 16, 2016, the CBC reported that Ottawa had filed a defense in the taxi industry lawsuit. [Source.] In the opinion of this author, the taxi industry lawsuit is entirely justified. It is also the opinion of this author that the industry's lawsuit is hopeless. Western mixed economy welfare states have given up on pretending that justice has any role to play in political outcomes. The astute observer of the contemporary political scene is already familiar with that simple truth. Economic outcomes…
While he was a member of Hamilton's Taxi Advisory Committee, it was my opinion that Mr. Butt was driven by nothing more than a mad desire to see the license owners and brokers suffer. Though he posed as a representative of the rank and file drivers, it was obvious to me, that he would be willing to sacrifice their interests as long as it damaged the brokers and owners. At one of the meetings, a vote was proposed. The resolution was whether the City of Hamilton should impose a 100% accessibility mandate upon the city's taxi owners, at 100% their expense. Ejaz was ecstatic. He clapped and cheered when the vote was announced, declaring, "Accessible transportation is not a privilege, it is a right," along with other less enthusiastic members. I voted against the mandate. To me, it seemed unjust to saddle the taxi owners of Hamilton with tens of thousands of dollars in additional compliance costs, just to make those moral hypocrites at City Hall and Queen's Pa…
Comments have been disabled in the TO Sun article (see link) so I will comment here. "People are putting themselves in charge more often -we have more people owning businesses, more people moving into self-employment... and don’t want anybody, whether it’s a company or a union telling them what to do.” What a pile of BULLSHIT! How do I know that? Try purchasing "ridesharing" insurance for your own personal car without signing on to be raped by Uber's 25% fee or *tax.* In other words, try setting up your own "ridesharing" operation. Uber, in obvious collusion with the government, cleverly rigged the insurance regulations in Ontario so that insurance is ONLY AVAILABLE to those who become *taxpaying* citizens of the Uber system. How can anyone who doesn’t "want anybody, whether it’s a company or a union telling them what to do,” possibly applaud such a rigged system? Fuck Uber. Fuck the shills who falsely herald Uber as "People puttin…
On August 16th of this year, I received a copy of an email that my friend, Paul Morris, A.K.A. "Bubbles," sent to mayor Fred and a few other local politicians. (Sam Merulla, Tom Jackson, Terry Whitehead and Maria Pearson.) Here is the email Mr. Morris sent: "As a long time taxi driver in this city, I would like to ask what (if any) tangible action plan the council has for dealing with Uber. I am all for competition - as a consumer of various goods / services myself, I appreciate choice - BUT it needs to be FAIR, and on a LEVEL PLAYING FIELD so to speak. How does the city justify its inaction and ineffective addressing of this issue while they continue to maintain the stauts quo for those involved in the taxi industry as to licensing, bylaws and regulation. fees collected, fines for violation of said bylaws / codes, and generally just raking in $ for all these years from those in this industry? Then there's the issue of allowing a mega US corporation to flout th…

Stranger Danger - The Uber "Business Model."

Update: August 24, 2016 Uber and Lyft have successfully undone sixty or more years worth of warnings against getting into cars with strangers. The reports continue to roll in. Here is another report of an attack by someone driving an unmarked bandit cab. Uber has a "cut and paste" response whenever these types of Uber-driven incidents occur. It goes something like this, "Uber has a page of advice for riders on how to be safe when taking an Uber journey. It notes that when you’re matched with a driver through the app, you will see their name, license plate number, photo and rating so you know who’s picking you up. It also advises you share your ETA with friends and family so they know when to expect you." The fatal flaw in this, arguably fake, piece of advice, is that the times of heaviest cab use are usually during bar closing times when many users are so drunk they can hardly see. let alone follow all of Uber's sage advice. The following video demonstrates …
Death of Surge? Something odd happened to me last week during bar closing time. Despite the deluge of Ubergulls in one of the bar districts, there seemed to be a sudden "surge" in street hails for rule-abiding taxicabs. Sure enough, I managed to hook a fare going to the east end. They asked me if they could make multiple stops, which means that they intend to continue the shared ride after reaching the first destination. But something odd was going on during the shared ride. The guys in the second and third rows of the van were huddled around a smartphone. I kept hearing Uber this, and Uber that. It was kind of irritating. When we arrived at the first destination they told me they were all getting out there. They were now going to hook up with an Uber taxi. He arrived almost as quickly as any cab. Couldn't have been too busy. Dark car with dark tinted windows, like something out of a stalker thriller, and some or all of them piled in. So, of course, I was left won…