Uber

No, Uber Didn't 'Turn On' Surge Pricing in Sydney Because of the Terrorist Attack

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surging

Yesterday Islamist gunmen in Sydney, Australia, stormed a café and took patrons hostage, leading to a lock-down of the downtown and an exodus out of the area. People turned to the modes of transportation available to them and many took Uber. You may have seen this Gawker headline floating around your social media feeds: "Uber Turned on Surge Pricing for People Fleeing Sydney."

Surprise, it's not true. Gawker, which has transformed from a media gossip site into a lowest common denominator liberal rag over the last decade, has adopted Uber-hating as one of those lowest common denominator factors.

In this case, like in many of the cases seized upon by Uber critics, the hoop-la was over automation. Welcome to the 21st century, Gawker. Uber institute the policy of surge pricing to help best connect drivers to potential passengers during high-demand times, like holidays or sporting events. Uber doesn't hide when surge pricing is in effect and it kicks in automatically as needed. No one "turns it on." During the attack in Sydney, then, it makes sense that surge pricing would go into effect automatically as there was a surge of people who wanted to use the service.

But Uber actually suspended surge pricing and instead offered free rides, described misleadingly by some media outlets as an "about face." Surge pricing is automatic, one of the factors that makes it such an effective tool of matching supply to demand. Presumably Uber covered the cost of the fare for the drivers, perhaps even under surge pricing, or else Uber's announcement of free rides might as well have been an announcement it was suspending service during the incident.

Here's the most important point: Had Uber chose not to offer free rides during this attack, surge pricing would still be appropriate. Drivers choosing to travel in and out of a danger zone to evacuate people are incurring avoidable risk. That risk dampens supply but increases demand, creating the potential for chaos on the streets as passengers fight over scarce cabs. Surge pricing encourages some passengers to consider other modes of evacuation and encourages more drivers to go out and offer their services.

This is a good thing. Liberals often argue teachers and other public employees must be paid even better in order to get better employees while at the same time balking at the idea of merit-based pay or substantive job review. In a basic economic sense, higher pay should attract more candidates. It's up to those doing the hiring, though, that the candidates are better. Government bureaucracy eliminates a lot of the market forces that would otherwise play out to link the best candidates with the best compensation.

Surge pricing, like better pay, works in a similar way to attract more drivers. In the case of the Uber driver, a valid license and a car are ultimately all that's needed to perform adequately, pretty objective criteria, and Uber remains 100 percent voluntary. Some Uber critics point to the dangers presented by "unvetted" Uber drivers. It's led to Uber charging a "safety fee" to vet drivers. But it's mostly an illusion, just like it is with taxicab regulations There are plenty of examples of incompetent, unsavory, and even criminal cab drivers. Any story cherry picked about a nightmare experience with Uber will have a counterpart in the regulated taxi industry. And there are the stories from the regulated taxi industry—unable to track down your driver after leaving something in the car, arguing over what price had been agreed upon for the ride, and so on—that have no Uber counterpart.

In other markets, surge pricing would be called "price gouging." This, too, is an important market tool. The costs are higher to bring supplies into disaster areas, and as more supplies are needed, higher prices still are needed to divert those supplies from going to places in which it's easier for the supplier to sell them. Rationing gas after hurricanes, for example, only slows the process of returning to normal. Gas is harder to transport into a disaster zone. When suppliers are unable to adjust the price to reflect that, even less gas is transported into the disaster zone, making the supply even scarcer.

At the end of the day, Uber, which employs no drivers and owns no car, is a service that helps connect people with cars willing to drive for a few dollars with people who need to get somewhere and are willing to pay for a few dollars. Uber offers customers more choices and, unlike taxi cartels, aren't forced on anyone. Critics are of course free to keep criticizing but they ignore these basic facts at the peril of their own reputations, if any, for intellectual honesty and integrity.

UPDATE: Here is what Uber tells us: "As soon as we became aware of the situation, we capped it and made all rides free to people leaving Sydney's CBD. Uber is paying for these rides. If riders got charged surge pricing earlier, we will refund it."

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144 responses to “No, Uber Didn't 'Turn On' Surge Pricing in Sydney Because of the Terrorist Attack

  1. “Islamist gunmen”

    It’s plural now?

    1. Allah will guide his bullets. Therefore, plural.

  2. Thanks Ed. It was disappointing seeing that Nick’s earlier post contained no attempt to explain or defend Uber’s actions. Great post.

    And seriously, it’s not as if Uber was the only remaining car service. If you didn’t want to pay Uber’s price, you had other Sydney cabs to use.

    1. Theoretically correct, in practice, not so much. Most cabs took people out of the CBD and didn’t return. Since streets were blocked off, buildings in lock down, and there was insufficient information about safety, they didn’t have much incentive. Uber’s pricing was therefore a very valuable incentive to get transport back into the CBD, especially as public transport was also severely disrupted. When we were working out whether to stay or go, and there were no cabs, Uber was definitely an option.

      1. Nice to hear from you IFH. I know there are 4m+ (?) in Sydney, but…

      2. It sounds like regular cabs turned on surge pricing as well, only the price was “infinite”.

  3. Critics are of course free to keep criticizing but they ignore these basic facts at the peril of their own reputations, if any, for intellectual honesty and integrity.

    Hahahahahahaha. No.

    This will have essentially zero effect on Gawker’s rep among those who think Gawker brings them accurate information.

    1. Yeah, the only “reputation” that matters to these people is regurgitating the current talking points and hating all the right targets. It’s been extremely clear for a long time that intellectual honesty and integrity mean absolutely nothing to them.

  4. OT: But do redneck lives matter?

    http://www.nbc4i.com/story/276…..d-shooting

    1. That’s just WT on WT crime.

      1. Oh well then. Carry on.

  5. OT: If there’s one thing that progressives have taught me, it’s that when a man commits a spree killing in which 4 of the 6 people killed are men, it’s evidence that men hate women and must be collectively reformed.

    However, when a Muslim extremist takes hostages, puts up a flag saying ‘There is no other God but Allah’ and explicitly says ‘yes, I am doing this because of my religion,’ this hostage situation has absolutely nothing to do with Islam.

    Then again, this particular scumbag also got in trouble for allegedly sexually assaulting a bunch of women, so I’m looking forward to the first progressive thinkpiece blaming this on toxic masculinity.

    1. One of the ABC anchors was acting like a PR flack for every Muslim in Australia.

      1. Progs are already jumping all over each other to talk about how we Must Not Be Racist and Must Not Attack Muslims Due to This.

        What amazes me is that, up until now, there have been much worse attacks than this, and literally none of them have resulted in a widespread, violent anti-Muslim backlash. None of them. There was no widespread backlash after 9/11 or after 7/7.

        Every time there is an attack which is in any way related to Islam, progressives proceed to courageously stand against violent, anti-Muslim extremists that do not appear to actually exist.

        Of course, if you mention this, they will bring up Anders Breivik. Apparently the one crazed Norwegian from 3 years ago is evidence of a burgeoning wave of anti-Muslim terror that will doubtlessly sweep across the west any day now. They’re sure of it.

        1. To be able to loathe your own kind you need to believe all of your types (except you and your like-minded anointed ones) are the most evil, bloodthirsty devils possible. Meanwhile, all the other races, cultures and religions you were not fortunate enough to be born into are clearly superior to everyone in your venn diagram circle (except the little mitochondria-like circle within that, of course, of you and your like-minded anointed ones).

    2. Then again, this particular scumbag also got in trouble for allegedly sexually assaulting a bunch of women, so I’m looking forward to the first progressive thinkpiece blaming this on toxic masculinity

      Don’t hold your breathe for that one. See, that sort of toxic masculinity (as well as rampant homophobia) are hallmarks of modern Islamism. But the TOP. MEN. won’t allow us to acknowledge such because that would be cultural bias by the alleged oppressors of the allegedly oppressed.

  6. Nice attempt to spin the reprehensible actions of Uber. The fact is that they did gouge people, people fleeing for their lives.

    What a shameful disgrace indeed

    1. We are all concerned with events in CBD. Fares have increased to encourage more drivers to come online & pick up passengers in the area.

      Yes, clearly trying to incentivize more drivers to come work during a period where demand is surging is reprehensible. It would have been vastly better if they hadn’t done this. That way, fewer drivers would have been available and no one would have been able to get a ride, which would have been a far more equitable outcome, comrade.

      1. But Uber actually suspended surge pricing and instead offered free rides, described misleadingly by some media outlets as an “about face.”

        Would you say that the author of this article was being entirely honest with its readers? There is no mention of the tweet. Only the link to Gawker, a site he maligns in the opening.

        1. Nothing in that tweet contradicts this piece. Surge pricing IS automated and it exists in order to get more drivers to come out during times of high demand. That way, even though the costs are higher, Uber can make sure there are more drivers so the people who really want to will be able to expediently get a ride.

          If they didn’t have surge pricing, fewer drivers would come online, there would be fewer cars available and people wouldn’t be able to get rides at all.

          Furthermore, as I mentioned below, much of the ‘surge pricing’ costs go into the pocket of the driver. As a result, you’re basically complaining that Uber pays its drivers high wages during times that require a lot of work.

          Why do you not want Uber drivers to get paid a living wage? Do you hate the working class?

          1. Naaah.
            Blink just hates the lefty boogy-men. You know, Walmart, Uber, Koch Industries. Just those he was told to hate!

          2. Nothing in that tweet contradicts this piece. Surge pricing IS automated and it exists in order to get more drivers to come out during times of high demand.

            Let us ignore the motivational mechanisms of price gouging surging for a moment and focus on the article’s description of events.

            (1) You may have seen this Gawker headline floating around your social media feeds: “Uber Turned on Surge Pricing for People Fleeing Sydney.”

            Surprise, it’s not true.

            What is not true? I guess the untruth is the “turn on” portion because that is automatic and was not specifically because people were fleeing for their lives. That argument is pedantic and misleading. Price Surging did turn on and the company even tweeted how that was a good thing in regards to the situation. Reason saying it is untrue, without a more detailed explanation, strains credulity.

            1. Ya know, it helps if you read more than the headline:

              “In this case, like in many of the cases seized upon by Uber critics, the hoop-la was over automation. Welcome to the 21st century, Gawker. Uber institute the policy of surge pricing to help best connect drivers to potential passengers during high-demand times, like holidays or sporting events. Uber doesn’t hide when surge pricing is in effect and it kicks in automatically as needed. No one “turns it on.” During the attack in Sydney, then, it makes sense that surge pricing would go into effect automatically as there was a surge of people who wanted to use the service.”

              But then, if a proggy can’t get it from a bumper sticker, why a proggy just isn’t gonna get it.

              1. What’s especially great is that the tweet is literally just Uber informing customers about surge pricing so they will be aware of the fact that costs will be higher than normal.

                In addition to whining that Uber gave more money to its workers, Blink is also complaining that Uber told their customers about a price change.

                I think Blink doesn’t quite know what his shriveled little prog-brain actually wants.

              2. From the tweet:

                We are all concerned with events in CBD. Fares have increased to encourage more drivers to come online & pick up passengers in the area.

                Is everyone just going to ignore their tweet? Let me translate since no won seems to be able to comprehend:

                We are all concerned with events in CBD

                We are aware that your situation is dire.

                Fares have increased to encourage more drivers to come online & pick up passengers in the area.

                We will now be charging you more money because our service has become more valuable to you.

                1. Let me translate since no won seems to be able to comprehend

                  Before anyone asks, yes that was intentional. If you think about it it is quite clever.

                2. “Is everyone just going to ignore their tweet?”

                  No, no one has. You seem incapable of reading.

            2. Automated system vs. Conscious individualized decision.

              It speaks to motivation, asshat.

          3. (2) Gawker, which has transformed from a media gossip site into a lowest common denominator liberal rag over the last decade, has adopted Uber-hating as one of those lowest common denominator factors.

            A little priming for the masses. Got to stoke the emotional fire. Gawker is clearly guilty of Goldsteinism.

            When I read something like this in the opening of an article I know will be reading a rational, well argued, and honest report.

            1. “When I read something like this in the opening of an article I know will be reading a rational, well argued, and honest report.”

              Yep, calling a gardening implement a gardening implement really pisses off proggies!
              Relax, blink, he could’a mentioned that Gawker is almost as credible as Rolling Stone!

            2. Uber bias is only a problem when it’s pro-Uber. Reminding people that a click-bait site has been anti-Uber for a while is unacceptable.

          4. (3)No one “turns it on.” During the attack in Sydney, then, it makes sense that surge pricing would go into effect automatically as there was a surge of people who wanted to use the service.

            But Uber actually suspended surge pricing and instead offered free rides, described misleadingly by some media outlets as an “about face.”

            From the tweet:

            We are all concerned with events in CBD. Fares have increased to encourage more drivers to come online & pick up passengers in the area.

            Yeah, no about face here. Why not address the tweet directly? No, instead impugn the integrity of the staff at Gawker. Then, write how kind hearted Uber is because after, and only after, public outrage did they change their policy.

            1. “Why not address the tweet directly? No, instead impugn the integrity of the staff at Gawker. Then, write how kind hearted Uber is because after, and only after, public outrage did they change their policy.”

              Keep at it, blink; no one’s gonna take your shovel as long as you keep digging that hole.
              Hint: Since they didn’t “turn it on”, suspending it was not an “about face”.
              I’m gonna presume, given that you’re a lefty ignoramus, that it is an honest mistake on your part, rather than an insulting attempt at misleading people.
              But I could be wrong.

              1. I am reposting because the original is an appropriate response:

                From the tweet:

                We are all concerned with events in CBD. Fares have increased to encourage more drivers to come online & pick up passengers in the area.

                Is everyone just going to ignore their tweet? Let me translate since no one seems to be able to comprehend:

                We are all concerned with events in CBD

                We are aware that your situation is dire.

                Fares have increased to encourage more drivers to come online & pick up passengers in the area.

                We will now be charging you more money because our service has become more valuable to you.

                1. We will now be charging you more money because our service has become more valuable to you. offering you a service that was previously unavailable because no one would risk their lives for fucking chicken scratch to haul your useless lazy ass to safety. And yet, here you are complaining that someone who risked their safety to give YOUR LAZY ASS a ride should do so at whatever fucking compensation you think is fair, despite your total refusal to do anything yourself about the situation other than whine like a stupid fucking twat”

                  FTFY

                  1. FTFY

                    You are arguing economics I am addressing the actual text of the article. My translation of the tweet is not irrational. It is in fact how it was interpreted by many. This article completely ignores the tweet and just denigrates the messenger (Gawker). While simultaneously casting a positive light on the “benevolent” Uber.

                    1. You are arguing economics

                      No, actually, I’m just insulting your intelligence.

                    2. blink|12.15.14 @ 9:43PM|#
                      “You are arguing economics I am addressing the actual text of the article.”

                      No, shitpile, you are doing nothing of the sort.
                      This comment:
                      “We will now be charging you more money because our service has become more valuable to you.”
                      appears anywhere in the article.
                      You are stating a fact while demonstrating you HATE them.
                      IOWs, typical lefty asshole.

                2. YOU IDIOT! CAN’T YOU READ?!
                  They did NOT turn it on, so turning it off is NOT an about-face.
                  Is that clear, asshole?

                  1. They did NOT turn it on, so turning it off is NOT an about-face.
                    Is that clear, asshole?

                    It magically came on. Then, they patted themselves on the back for being so proactive and thoughtful.

                    We are all concerned with events in CBD. Fares have increased to encourage more drivers to come online & pick up passengers in the area.

                    1. It magically came on.

                      At least you finally admit you were wrong in claiming they turned it on. Put the keyboard away and call it a night now.

                    2. It magically came on.

                      You are astoundingly stupid. Yes, it magically came on, you inept, clueless fuck. That’s how automated software works.

                      I love it when braindead mongoloid fucks like you opine on something they not only know nothing about, but are far too stupid to ever understand*, yet think they do by placing it in some human concept, when it’s a fucking computer program. It’s hilarious watching you fumble around in the dark trying to understand concepts that are so far beyond you, you might as well be a snail.

                      * And automation is an incredibly simple concept, yet you are so fucking dumb you still can’t understand it. I mean, that’s just pathetic.

                    3. And automation is an incredibly simple concept, yet you are so fucking dumb you still can’t understand it. I mean, that’s just pathetic.

                      By automation do you mean how you reflexively typed your response to what I wrote. Uber took credit for the price surge during the crisis, it does not matter by what mechanism it was activated. They praised the outcome and claimed ownership. What is so difficult to grasp here.

                    4. blink|12.15.14 @ 10:58PM|#
                      “By automation do you mean how you reflexively typed your response to what I wrote.”
                      No, pretty sure he meant your jaw-dropping stupidity.

                      “Uber took credit for the price surge during the crisis, it does not matter by what mechanism it was activated.”
                      Except you, you steaming pile of shit, made the mechanism a central part of your claims.

                      “They praised the outcome and claimed ownership.”
                      Says lefty ignoramus.

                      “What is so difficult to grasp here.”
                      Nothing; you’ve been proven wrong in every claim you’ve made.

                    5. Nothing; you’ve been proven wrong in every claim you’ve made.

                      You know you do not have to respond to all of my posts.

                      Says lefty ignoramus.

                      You also do not have to insult me in everyone. It is okay though. You are still my brother/sister and I love you. I will not be deterred by your hostility. You will come to know the truth and love shall soften your hardened heart.

                    6. blink|12.16.14 @ 12:02AM|#
                      …”You are still my brother/sister and I love you. I will not be deterred by your hostility. You will come to know the truth and love shall soften your hardened heart.”

                      False humility and passive-aggessive comments are not surprising from lefty assholes.
                      It’s a shame you ‘won’t be deterred’ from your stupidity by me; I hope someone can cure you of it.
                      It tends to lead to mass murder, which you would know had you read anything other than lefty propaganda.

                    7. blink|12.15.14 @ 9:51PM|#
                      “It magically came on.”

                      I think it was Heinlein who pointed out that to those sufficiently ignorant, any technology appears as magic.
                      Blink’s here to prove him right.

                    8. Oh, and BTW, you post this:

                      “We are all concerned with events in CBD. Fares have increased to encourage more drivers to come online & pick up passengers in the area.”

                      without comment. I’m going to presume you thing there is something wrong with encouraging people to provide services other people want?
                      Is that your intention?
                      I just want to make sure you really are dumb as mud before I point it out.

                    9. I just want to make sure you really are dumb as mud before I point it out.

                      My comment was above the quote.

                      Then, they patted themselves on the back for being so proactive and thoughtful.

                      Everyone, including Reason wants to ignore the undertone of the tweet.

                      “We are all concerned with events in CBD. Fares have increased to encourage more drivers to come online & pick up passengers in the area.”

                      We care so we are raising prices. We are tweeting to let everyone know how much we care and how we are handling the situation.

                    10. blink|12.15.14 @ 10:16PM|#
                      “My comment was above the quote.”
                      So, thank you! You have proven yourself to be dumb as mud!
                      Fuck off, asshole.

                    11. “undertone”

                      dogwhistles

                    12. Jesus Christ, dude. Do you understand their business model at all? Uber doesn’t have a fleet of fucking cars waiting to send out. They. Are. A. Facilitator. Of. Independent. Contractors.

                      How else do you think Uber would get more cars to drive into not just a high demand environment but a dangerous one at that? It’s through incentives.

            2. Translation of the tweet-

              “We are concerned about this terrorist event, and will raise prices to encourage drivers to pick up passengers in the area”

              That’s because Uber apparently doesn’t EMPLOY drivers and own cars, and can’t force anyone to drive there.

              I don’t think you understand their business model. It’s a rideshare. It’s almost like a college buddy of yours accepting 100 dollars from you so he can give you a ride home to Idaho. Or some place.

              1. Translation of the tweet-

                “We are concerned about this terrorist event, and will raise prices to encourage drivers to pick up passengers in the area”

                That is not how most people interpret the tweet. Instead, they see a callous company exploiting people who are in desperate need of assistance. Reason did a disservice to its readers by not addressing the tweet before it launched its attack on Gawker and other sites.

                Thank you for actually responding to what I wrote and not the imaginary conversations going on inside your head as per normal on this site.

                1. “That is not how most people ”

                  get him epi

                2. blink|12.15.14 @ 10:34PM|#
                  “That is not how most people interpret the tweet.”

                  So you’re critiquing Uber’s marketing? Defending ignoramuses such as yourself? Just left with grasping at straws? Admitting you have no point?

                  1. Is everyone just going to ignore their tweet? Let me translate since no one seems to be able to comprehend:

                    We are all concerned with events in CBD

                    We are aware that your situation is dire.

                    Fares have increased to encourage more drivers to come online & pick up passengers in the area.

                    We will now be charging you more money because our service has become more valuable to you.

                    let me address what you think is your actual point and put it to bed

                    first, no don’t translate, i don’t need you assuming i can’t read or understand, the arrogance of such a statement is lost on you apparently

                    second, you say we, like uber is part of we, you are aware the price is between the driver and passenger? and that the only mechanism uber has to actually physically increase the number of drivers, is to make it more lucrative for them to be there?

                    you’re criticizing them for doing the only thing they can do to actually get people rides. and you think we are the ones not getting it.

                3. blink|12.15.14 @ 10:34PM|#
                  “Thank you for actually responding to what I wrote and not the imaginary conversations going on inside your head as per normal on this site.”

                  You mean the responses to what you wrote and what you ignore, you steaming pile of shit?

          5. people wouldn’t be able to get rides at all

            That’s the whole point. If *everyone* can’t get a ride, then *no one* shall.

            1. That’s the whole point. If *everyone* can’t get a ride, then *no one* shall.

              Oh your parents weren’t rich, well I guess you’re stuck here to die. Sucks to be you.

              1. “Oh your parents weren’t rich, well I guess you’re stuck here to die. Sucks to be you.

                Oh, you made THAT comment in response?
                Sucks to be you.

              2. You don’t have feet? WTF? You actually just said that without UBER, people would be “stuck here to die”. Are you actually retarded? I’d feel bad if I was making fun of an actual retard, instead of just someone saying extremely stupid shit.

              3. Since you’re such an altruist, you’re perfectly free to swoop into each hotspot in the world and offer your services for less than they are worth.

                1. offer your services for less than they are worth.

                  What price would you put on a child’s life? I thought we were suppose to praise Uber for offering their services for free.

                  Uber rides out of the CBD today are free for all riders to help Sydneysiders get home safely.

                  1. blink|12.15.14 @ 10:08PM|#
                    “What price would you put on a child’s life?”

                    Are you a child?
                    If so, uh, $0.01, maybe. If I didn’t have to lean over to pick it up.

                  2. I love that you completely missed the point. I’m going to go eat my hot wife’s pussy now. You’ll still be laughably ignorant when I’m done.

                  3. “What price would you put on a child’s life?”

                    This seems strange, why haven’t you bankrupted yourself providing free services in emergencies? Have you?

                    If not, then you have yourself put a price on life, so I fail to see how you can credibly ask that question.

              4. “Oh your parents weren’t rich, well I guess you’re stuck here to die. Sucks to be you.”

                I’m lost, since when did we enjoy a constitutional right to be picked up by a private cab company in the event of crime?

                You’re telling me someone who lives 10 minutes away from this cafe was in some mortal danger?

                Dude, no one who might work for Uber HAD to drive there. No one. I wouldn’t go near that place even if someone offered me 1,000 dollars. You don’t mess with radical islam.

    2. “Gouge” is a word that means as much as “luminiferous aether”.

      Keep using it. It’s helpful when the morons self-identify.

    3. A little digging and the picture becomes clearer. This has the Koch brother’s stink all over it.

      How Uber can help the GOP gain control of the cities

      1. Okay, now I know this is a clever parody. There is no way someone could be stupid enough to type the above post while still being sentient enough to use a computer.

      2. So troll or idiot?

      3. HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!!!!

        Reason truly has the worst trolls.

        1. Okay. Reason gives a positive spin to the story and ignores the damaging parts and I am the troll? I get it, some people are so blinded from their indoctrination that they can just ignore the truth when it is staring them in the face.

          1. blink|12.15.14 @ 8:05PM|#
            “Okay. Reason gives a positive spin to the story and ignores the damaging parts and I am the troll?”

            From above:
            “A little digging and the picture becomes clearer. This has the Koch brother’s stink all over it.”
            Now tell us about the man on the grassy knoll, or Elvis’ alien love-child!
            Fucking troll.

          2. You’re a funny guy, blink. I like you. That’s why Warty’s going to rape you last.

            1. You’re in trouble blink, because EPISIARCH LIED.

              But seriously, please go on about how the Jews…I mean, the Kochs are controlling everything.

              1. Go ahead and call me an antisemite. That won’t stop me from getting the truth out

                The official mission of Youth Entrepreneurs is to provide kids with “business and entrepreneurial education and experiences that help them prosper and become contributing members of society.” The underlying goal of the program, however, is to impart Koch’s radical free-market ideology to teenagers. In the last school year, the class reached more than 1,000 students across Kansas and Missouri.

                Lesson plans and class materials obtained by The Huffington Post make the course’s message clear: The minimum wage hurts workers and slows economic growth. Low taxes and less regulation allow people to prosper. Public assistance harms the poor. Government, in short, is the enemy of liberty…

                With spending on public education under heavy assault — in large part by Koch-funded organizations and politicians they support — the nation’s poorest school districts are in desperate need of resources, making the free Koch curriculum an attractive alternative to nothing.

                1. OH MY GOD FREE EDUCATION MATERIALS!!! AND ON A SUBJECT THAT IS ACTUALLY USEFUL!!!!

                  /vapors

                2. Oh, the HORROR!
                  Kids learn economic facts! And how making money makes people prosperous!
                  Fuck off.

                  1. From the link:

                    They aimed to “inoculate” students against liberal ideas by assigning them to read passages from socialist and Marxist writers, whom they called “bad guys.” These readings would then be compared to works by the “good guys” — free-market economists like Friedrich Hayek and Ludwig von Mises…

                    One such video Davis showed his students defended price-gouging. “Anti-gouging laws don’t do anything to address” shortages, the video’s narrator argues. Another video titled “Is There a Glass Ceiling?” asserts that the gender pay gap is a myth. Women earn around 75 cents for every dollar earned by men, it says, but not because of discrimination in the labor market. Rather, it’s because of “differences in the choices that men and women make.”

                    1. OH MY GOD THEY ENCOURAGE A WELL ROUNDED EDUCATION TOO!!! OH MY GOD THE FUCKING MONSTERS!!!

                      /stronger vapors

                    2. “They aimed to “inoculate” students against liberal ideas …”
                      Horseshit opinion from Huffpo! I’m AMAZED! (not).

                      “One such video Davis showed his students defended price-gouging. “Anti-gouging laws don’t do anything to address” shortages,…”
                      As I mentioned, you’re obviously VERY upset that econ facts are presented to the students.
                      I guess you’d prefer the unicorn fantasies about ‘free shit’, right?

                    3. I will continue feeding you the rope from which you will hang your selves.

                      FTL:

                      In her book Born to Buy, author Juliet Schor recounts how General Mills paid Minnesota teachers $250 each to paint cereal logos on their cars and park them next to school buses. Dole offers lesson plans to elementary school teachers that are filled with positive messages about eating fruits and vegetables — messages that also benefit the food company’s bottom line.

                      The Society for Petroleum Engineers, together with Utah’s Department of Natural Resources, once sponsored an Earth Day poster contest that asked students, “Where Would We Be Without Oil, Gas & Mining?”

                      “It’s the same model that … Koch’s program is doing,” said Faith Boninger, a researcher based at the University of Colorado, Boulder who writes about private companies in schools.

                    4. “said Faith Boninger”

                      well if faith boninger said it it must be fact

                    5. “Dole offers lesson plans to elementary school teachers that are filled with positive messages about eating fruits and vegetables”

                      quite the indictment

                    6. Apparently obesity’s a good thing as long as filthy corporations are teaching good nutrition advice.

                    7. blink, perhaps if you told me what i was supposed to be outraged about?

                    8. Rai|12.15.14 @ 10:43PM|#
                      “blink, perhaps if you told me what i was supposed to be outraged about?”

                      Hey! Don’t take his shovel away!
                      He’s up to his earlobes now; give him another 5 posts and we won’t see hem at all!

                    9. blink, perhaps if you told me what i was supposed to be outraged about?

                      messages that also benefit the food company’s bottom line.

                      once sponsored an Earth Day poster contest that asked students, “Where Would We Be Without Oil, Gas & Mining?”

                      “It’s the same model that … Koch’s program is doing,”

                    10. ah, so i’m supposed to be outraged that dole provided free educational materials that discuss in a positive way, a serious problem with children, i.e. eating enough fruits and vegetables, while also allowing dole to improve their company in the process.

                      so, they help out with a problem, and you begrudge them a positive benefit? they provide something i’d otherwise have to pay the government to create, and benefit in the process and that’s bad?

                      i’m still not getting it.

                    11. or is it the gas and mining thing, where the truth about the vast benefits of those industries is discussed?

                      still not getting it.

                    12. still not getting it.

                      This ties in with my original point and maybe will help you to understand

                      Uber’s strategy and ideology perfectly mesh with the rightwing attack on government regulation, and it makes no bones about that. It has joined forces with the Republican National Committee and Generation Opportunity, an astroturf group backed by the Koch brothers, to inundate social media with pro-Uber propaganda urging support of the free market and innovative entrepreneurs.

                    13. blink|12.15.14 @ 11:27PM|#
                      “This ties in with my original point and maybe will help you to understand

                      Uber’s strategy and ideology perfectly mesh with the rightwing attack on government regulation, and it makes no bones about that. It has joined forces with the Republican National Committee and Generation Opportunity, an astroturf group backed by the Koch brothers, to inundate social media with pro-Uber propaganda urging support of the free market and innovative entrepreneurs.”

                      OH, OH, LOOK!
                      Some people agree with other people who happen to promote prosperity and lefty assholes go batshit crazy!
                      Thanks, blink! We all need amusement now and then.

                    14. Thanks, blink! We all need amusement now and then.

                      What about enlightenment? I’d like to make sure that my efforts were not for naught.

                    15. blink|12.15.14 @ 11:52PM|#
                      “What about enlightenment?”
                      We’ve got that; you don’t. The Enlightenment has to do with facts rather than faith.

                      “I’d like to make sure that my efforts were not for naught.’
                      Your efforts are worse than “naught”; they’re regressive.
                      In case it isn’t obvious, you’re an ignoramus spreading lies and stupidity.
                      If you have FACTS suggesting otherwise, there are plenty of us here willing to examine them.
                      You haven’t posted any.

                    16. So a company is evil, even though it is promoting healthy lifestyle choices, because it’s a company and it makes profits off of healthy lifestyle choices? The horror.

                      “Where Would We Be Without Oil, Gas & Mining?”

                      If this is an education program showing massive amounts of back-breaking manual labour, starvation and poverty, guess what, that’s a correct historical education. Thanks oil, gas and mining.

                    17. blink|12.15.14 @ 11:02PM|#
                      (in response to a question about how we should be concerned about honest statements of facts, blink posts):
                      “messages that also benefit the food company’s bottom line.”
                      WHOA, can’t have honesty promote making money!

                      (in response to a question about how we should be concerned about honest statements of facts, blink posts):
                      “once sponsored an Earth Day poster contest that asked students, “Where Would We Be Without Oil, Gas & Mining?””
                      WHOA, can’t have honesty promote making money!

                      “It’s the same model that … Koch’s program is doing,”
                      Hey, blink! I presume you prefer lies? Fuck off.

                    18. Well, at least they’re admitting that liberalism derives from socialism and Marxism. That’s progress I guess.

                    19. Anyone who complains about price gouging are ignorant of how the market works. Or, they do understand and just don’t like what they see and demand coercive measures from the government to make it ‘fair’.

                    20. And that is clearly so much different than my economic education, where Keynes was stressed as the be-all and end-all while Mises and Hayek were greeted with responses of ‘who?’ Clearly not a case of an education system carving out ‘good guys’ and ‘bad guys’.

                      Oh no, the Jews are infecting the Western world with Zionist propaganda! They’re spreading The Protocols of the Elders of Zion to subvert the ethics of the gentiles!

                3. we have to prevent them from speaking! who should be allowed to hear such things?

              2. Don’t encourage the children, John.

                1. vegetables rufus, they’re making them eat their vegetables

                  1. sorry did i say making i meant encouraging through education

                2. Hey, craiginmass hasn’t been around for awhile, I miss random ‘KOCHZ’ nonsense.

                  1. John Titor|12.15.14 @ 10:39PM|#
                    “Hey, craiginmass hasn’t been around for awhile, I miss random ‘KOCHZ’ nonsense.”

                    Maybe asshole took a new handle; the ‘arguments’ are quite similar.

          3. damaging parts

            Which parts were damaging? The parts where they raised pricing to meet the demand?

            1. What blink hates is people doing thins for money. It doesn’t matter if money motivates people to do something good and valuable. People should be doing good and valuable things for free. So sayeth blink.

              1. EXCEPT as relates to, oh, taxes, minimum wage, paying wymens more than menz; you know, standard lefty hypocrisy.

              2. What blink hates is people doing thins for money. It doesn’t matter if money motivates people to do something good and valuable. People should be doing good and valuable things for free. So sayeth blink.

                No, not for free but there are serious inequities in our society that are being exploited by nefarious actors.

                FTL:

                Kansas is a particularly ripe state for YE to target. In addition to serving as Koch Industries’ home base, the state has a public school system hungry for extra help: It’s so underfunded that a few months ago the state’s Supreme Court deemed school funding levels unconstitutionally low.

                1. blink|12.15.14 @ 10:46PM|#
                  …”No, not for free but there are serious inequities in our society that are being exploited by nefarious actors.
                  FTL:
                  Kansas is a particularly ripe state for YE to target. In addition to serving as Koch Industries’ home base, the state has a public school system hungry for extra help: It’s so underfunded that a few months ago the state’s Supreme Court deemed school funding levels unconstitutionally low.”

                  Now THAT is a classic of special pleading and false equivalence, along with just plain stupidity regarding the subject matter.
                  Fuck off; you’re getting tiresome.

                2. i doubt an underfunding public schools argument is going to get you very far in here

                3. Unconstitutionally low.

                  And that’s moronic, because the Constitution says nothing about education, it’s delegated to the states. Kansas’ constitution on the subject of education (Article 6) also only discusses finance in terms of the legislature using taxes to fund and not charging tuition for legally required education. Standards for education and funding requirements are not mentioned.

                  But you may have a point about lackluster American education if a Canadian has to explain what’s unconstitutional to you and a Supreme Court. Perhaps the Koch funding will improve that.

    4. The price is automatic. You didn’t even read the article.

        1. You didn’t even read the article.

          I gave a detailed break down of the first couple of paragraphs that everyone just wants to ignore.

          1. But your detailed breakdown is basically “company cares more about profit than saving lives” sort of talking point.

            Let’s walk through this.

            1. Uber is a rideshare service, not a cab companies. Their drivers aren’t on the clock or have set hours like cab companies, as far as I can tell. They’re not necessarily obligated to do anything.

            2. The increase in price is an INCENTIVE for ordinary people to take risks in order to drive customers out of the nearby locations. No one has to drive there, and no one has to accept their price.

            You believe that if EVERYONE can’t take advantage of Uber’s versatility in that kind of situation, then NO one can. If some stranger wanted to pay an Uber driver 1,000 dollars to be transported away from a crime scene, it’s no skin off my nose.

            And if this was 9/11 level disaster, then the government would evacuate people on foot or otherwise provide free transportation.

          2. blink|12.15.14 @ 10:20PM|#
            “I gave a detailed break down of the first couple of paragraphs that everyone just wants to ignore.”

            Bullshit.
            You repeated the headline and got your hat handed to you, asshole.

  7. So Gillespie is a Gawkerite? Explains everything.

  8. Really, at the crux of the issue is the apparent belief that people are entitled to an Uber cab at a “fair” rate when there is a crisis situation at hand that might make getting more drivers out on the streets difficult.

    Sensible people can see how stupid that notion is and how meaningless the term “price gouging” is applied to real life situation.

    1. What I also find bizarre is that during surge pricing the driver brings home more money. That’s why they do it – because they can get more drivers to come work during hectic times if they offer higher pay.

      So progressives are complaining that they have to pay more when a lot of that money is going to the worker. Given that progressives WANT people to get paid higher wages, or at least they claim they do, they should love surge pricing since it puts more money in the pocket of the workers – but they’re hypocritical idiots, so they hate something their own ideology dictates they should support.

      And yet they want high minimum wage laws because they’re too stupid to realize that high minimum wage laws will have the exact same effect as Uber surge pricing, namely higher costs.

      They’re idiots, is what I’m trying to say.

      1. See, they expect the customer to pay less than what the worker takes home, with the difference made up from evil Scrooge McDuck swimming pools full of stolen profits.

        It’s the modern equivalent of that old joke about losing money on each sale and making up for it in volume.

        1. They probably expect the drivers to drive for free out of the goodness of their hearts.

          1. No, they expect Uber to pick up the difference. Uber is evil. Uber drivers are exploited.

    2. A lot pf people are really fucking stupid and think the “normal” price for something is what it should always be, regardless of demand or supply. Being abject morons, they get miffed when they are in a disadvantageous situation and have to pay more for what they want. Of course, if Uber (or any other company) had a Going Out Of Business sale where prices were slashed, they’d rush to take advantage of the company’s disadvantageous situation without the slightest sense of self-awareness.

      1. What’s more is the common myth that the seller sets the price.

      2. Yet somehow, progs seem to understand why the ski resort restaurant at the top of the slopes charges so much for a hot dog. I guess they have a hard time seeing past skiing, however, which has so many trendy designer things and very few rednecks.

        1. Hey! I used to ski!

  9. Anytime an Uber surge pricing / price gouging story comes up, I use it as a convenient way to test the economic literacy of people who decide to comment on it.

  10. Mommy, what is “Gawker” and why do people read it?

  11. Hey, remember recently when Gawker published a piece about how great a restaurant was for paying their workers $15 an hour? Well, if that restaurant paid their workers less, the food would be less expensive. This is essentially exactly what Uber is doing – they pay their drivers more money at certain times, that results in the costs of a trip being higher.

    According to Gawker, it’s good when a restaurant increases prices by paying their workers more, but it’s evil when Uber increases prices by paying their workers more.

    Am I missing some subtlety in Gawker’s logic, or are they just gibbering, retarded goons who are incapable of following their own logic for more than two seconds without getting distracted by something shiny?

    1. Indeed. To ask the question is to answer it.

  12. I may be incorrectly remembering information, but wasn’t there something about one of Gawker’s owners investing in Uber’s competition? I seem to vaguely recall something along those lines but I can’t source it. Can anyone confirm that?

  13. One gunman took hostages in one cafe, and that closed all of downtown Sydney? That is not a small downtown. I can understand closing down one street, maybe one block, but seriously, the entire CBD?

    1. Aussies are really afraid of guns. Really afraid of them. Like, an entire country full of Connecticut soccer moms on their first kid afraid.

      1. At least they are damn sexy.

    2. I guess unreasonable pants-shitting terror is not limited to the USA.

  14. I suspect that the left decided to attack Uber once they found that the right side of the population began to praise it’s unregulated beauty. That’s probably the ONLY reason why they targeted this company.

    It’s just….. the funniest thing. To a progressive, a nameless undocumented alien is an UNQUESTIONABLE asset to the nation’s economy, and it’s beneficial to the farms and factories that the owner and the workers make all sorts of under the tables arrangement. Those industries need workers, you know.

    But for private companies like Uber, THEY have to play by the rules. Even though they already do. And it’s amusing that the government which just granted deportation waiver to millions of people who didn’t pass background checks now have issues with Uber’s background checks.

    There has got to be thousands of uninsured / undocumented aliens who ride the freeways everyday, carpooling or driving to their work. They don’t commit waves of crime, and there are demands for their service somewhere. So why is everyone afraid of Uber drivers?

    1. XM|12.15.14 @ 11:00PM|#
      “I suspect that the left decided to attack Uber once they found that the right side of the population began to praise it’s unregulated beauty. That’s probably the ONLY reason why they targeted this company.”

      I think it also has to do with UNIONS!.
      The Left presumes unions = good regardless of any real effect; proggies are tied to the past and able to break loose of that only when TO MEN tell them to do so.
      See Hitler/Stalin Pact, and reversal thereafter.

  15. “Where Would We Be Without Oil, Gas & Mining?”

    certainly not in an Uber ride

  16. I looked at the paycheck which had said $7434 , I didn’t believe that my mom in-law realy bringing in money in their spare time at their computer. . there brothers friend has been doing this for only 16 months and just paid for the morgage on there place and bought a top of the range Aston Martin DB5 .
    You can join just easy ——- http://www.jobsfish.com

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