Editor’s Note: Government tries to stall Uber
Government always thinks it can make things better. Yet that’s rarely true, especially in the business world. Case in point: app-based ride-sharing services like Uber and Lyft. These companies are flourishing in cities all over the country, including Detroit. The businesses are giving people a reliable, competitively-priced alternative for getting around.
And they’re doing it pretty free from interference — so far. State and local governments are eager to make their mark on these companies, however, in the form of various regulations. This meddling will only hinder the innovative business models that have made Uber and Lyft so popular.
That’s the case in Michigan, where bills in the Senate have been introduced that would hamper Uber’s expansion in the state. A more reasonable set of bills passed out of the House this summer.
A recent example of government interfering with ridesharing came from Seattle, which became the first city to allow drivers for companies like Uber to unionize. That decision is likely heading to court.
It’s not surprising that Seattle, which is also now home to a $15 minimum wage, would meddle with Uber.
But even President Barack Obama’s former campaign manager David Plouffe is displeased with the Seattle decision. Plouffe, now an adviser to Uber, has said the independent contractors that work for the company haven’t indicated they want to unionize.
“People are flooding onto our platform because they are finding that it’s working for them,” Plouffe said in a recent NPR interview.
He’s right. Government shouldn’t slow down innovation that’s working.