Uber

Give a Drunk (or Anyone) a Free Ride Home on New Year's Eve, Accept a Tip, Face $500 Fine

Portsmouth, NH, not amused by Free State Project participant's plan to get around their anti-Uber regulations.

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It's always amusing, if only bitterly, when government shows its true colors of obdurate opposition to human safety and happiness in the name of its bogus authority.

Let's look at the reaction of local police to the news that libertarian/Free State Project activist Christopher David plans to launch a non-Uber tip-only ride service called "Arcade City" for Portsmouth, New Hampshire, on New Year's eve.

It is David's belief that by not explicitly charging, the free rides don't require the drivers to get official government permission to operate. (He believes they should legally fall under the explicitly unregulated "limousine" category if considered for hire at all.)

But as the local news site SeaCoastOnline reports:

Portsmouth Acting Deputy Police Chief Frank Warchol disagreed. If the drivers offer completely free rides, "then it doesn't fall under the ordinance," he said. "If they accept donations, they would fall under the ordinance."

Violating the ordinance could open up the free-ride entrepreneurs working under David's plan to fines of up to $500 for a first offense or $1,000 for second.

So, anyone trying to help some (possibly or likely) drunk person off the road on the cheap (or for whatever amount someone might choose to gift the driver) on New Year's eve in Portsmouth faces powerful punishment for daring to do so without having filed a fee and application with the city and following its rules.

I reported earlier about David's problems in New Hampshire as an Uber revolutionary (he's facing felony wiretap charges for video-ing a bar bouncer threatening him for his then-Uber driving), and I wrote about him a bit in my 2012 book Ron Paul's Revolution: The Man and the Movement He Inspired.

Hat tip: Free Keene.

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  1. Leviathan is smaller than it was in 1922. I’m told.

    1. I hear we’re having a libertarian moment.

    2. But we have really good tv programs and cell phones, so it’s all good.

      /Aldous Huxley

    3. Is Leviathan anywhere near Brooklyn?

      1. Maybe you’re thinking of Levittown.

  2. These are not free rides. He is just calling the fare a “donation”. If he wants to offer free rides, there is no problem. misleading headline. Bit extreme to say that the city can’t regulate a taxi service.

    1. Bit extreme to say that the city can’t regulate a taxi service.

      Is it? To me, it’s extreme to say the government has a say in who you put in your back seat and drive from A to B.

    2. It…it is? Why?

    3. Why? You want a ride to the airport. I’ll give you one for $20. Why should the government be involved?

      1. Because something bad or slightly unsatisfactory may occur and we all know that only government is capable of preventing slightly unsatisfactory events from occurring

      2. I used to live in a town whose principal employer was a defense contractor on the other side of a mountain range. Every morning, thousands of people commuted on a two lane highway to a military base(s). Many started carpools. Most drivers charged anywhere from a few bucks to $20 a month (1980 dollars) per rider for gas.

        Were they a taxi?

        1. Taxis? Yes.. No! They’re criminals.. next question.

      3. government has a right to regulate for public safety if you are operating a business. There are liability issues involved.

        1. Insurance companies exist.

          1. Unfortunately, the insurance companies are in bed with the government. Most of these types of state and local regs are born from the insurance companies not wanting to do the inspections themselves. So, they get the gov to do it, at taxpayer expense, of course. And if you go to an insurance company looking for liability insurance, they are, most likely, going to require that you meet all state regulations for licensing, inspections, etc.

            1. So, they get the gov to do it, at taxpayer expense, of course.

              Wrong.

              they are, most likely, going to require that you meet all state regulations for licensing, inspections, etc.

              This is correct but that doesn’t mean insurance companies are ‘in bed with the government’ any more than any other business that it required to follow regs.

            2. So you admit that government is the problem. Without government police powers, insurance companies couldn’t get in bed with them.

              1. Insurance companies would be requiring customers to meet strict demands whether they were required by the government or not.

                At the company I work for, we inspect (with no government involvement) every property for things above and beyond what might be government-regulated. Cracks in the sidewalk, for example. Anything safety-related. This is for everyone’s benefit.

        2. I think you might have clicked the wrong website.

          You wanted http://www.FellateTheState.com

          1. Server not found. Typical State behavior.

            1. I was really hoping that was a real website.

        3. Liability issues for whom? For the state? No. For the rider and the driver? Perhaps, but that’s what insurance is for. If you give people rides, screw up, and don’t have insurance, you’re going to be bankrupted, which is going to scare others into buying insurance, won’t it? And all that can happen without the state.

          1. “..And all that can happen without the state.”

            Bankrupted at gunpoint, at the scene of the screw up?

        4. Invite this dude to dinner and he won’t bring a bottle of wine. Liability issuez!

        5. What regulations would you propose here?

        6. There are liability issues involved.

          And there are civil courts to settle them.

        7. Government has rights?

        8. a) No, it doesn’t. Government has no rights, and this does not fall under its delineated powers.
          b) Your argument has nothing to do with public safety.
          c) It’s the consumer’s choice if they want to accept some risk when they agree to use a service.
          c) Uber provides great liability insurance. This guy’s company, now that Uber is shut down? Who knows.

          1. d) I need to learn the alphabet

            1. q) no you don’t?

          2. It’s the consumer’s choice if they want to accept some risk when they agree to use a service.

            B-b-b-b-but, what if the poor stupid consumer chooses wrongly?

        9. Liability issues can be handled with torts. The concept of “public safety” is an undefined nebulous thing that has nothing do to with violations of individual rights. The government should stay out.

        10. Governments do not have rights.

          People have rights.

          Governments have privileges and responsibilities delegated by people who have rights.

        11. “government has a right”

          Idiot.

        12. government has a right…

          Government doesn’t have rights. It has very restricted powers, granted by the people (in theory).

        13. This is the kind of bullshit people from Canada pull because we don’t shoot them when they do it.

        14. Governments do not have rights, only individuals do.

        15. Do you acknowledge that you are a slave, or have you not yet been able to conclude what your blind obedience says about you?

        16. If it’s a car on public roads all passengers are already covered by 3rd party insurance.

    4. Is is? Why the fuck is who drives in my insured car any fucking business of the state?

      1. If you aren’t doing anything wrong, why do you care if it’s their busines?

    5. Yea, I remember a friend of a friend giving me a ride to the airport a few years ago, so I dropped him a $20 as a thank you. If only the State had been around to club him into submission for his audacity.

      Great point, you Canadian bozo.

      1. not the same thing. He is not offering his services to the public.

        1. What would be considered the public? You expressed concern abouy liability. In this example the driver is still being paid for their service

        2. Above you state that there is no problem. How is public safety no longer a concern with free fares?

          1. Because. Reasons.

          2. For these people it’s because filthy lucre has exchanged hands and rendered the entire affair a sordid transaction and therefore beneath their contempt. Uber drivers (and this clever counterpart) are subhuman garbage for trading a service for money, whatever value they created in the process, and therefore they’re subject to the sanctions of the state. Because capitalism is evil.

          3. Because if fares are involved it means that someone is going to become an evil 1%. That will grow income inequality. That leads to global climate change. That leads to the extinction of the human race.

            See? Totes public safety issue.

        3. At what point do you go from being “the public” to being a “friend”???? Is there a 3 date rule or something? Do you have to “like someone” to be friends or do you have to “like them like them?”

          Also can you help me to understand why the liability and safety issues you describe don’t exist if you are giving a friend a ride. Seems you would still have to have liability insurance to operate the vehicle in either case. Help me to see your wisdom in knowing if you need the state involved for these liability issues and when you don’t.

        4. Were you born stupid, or is it something you studied?

          Governments do not have rights.

          Offering services to the public is one of the main features of a free society. It you cannot freely offer your services to another for mutually agreed upon compensation, there is no free society.

      2. I only used to be canadian. now I live in S. America. stupid American

        1. Oh, I see. You’re just a trollish moron. We have enough of your kind here, thank you very much.

        2. Either that or you own a taxi cab and are pissed off people have an alternative to your terrible cars and terrible service.

          1. you own a taxi cab

            Ding ding ding

            That’s always been the case when someone swooped in out of nowhere on a car service article.

            1. Seems to a pretty frequent and rapid occurrence too.

        3. Well please stay in whatever banana republic you ended up in and be sure to blow all proper government officials as a sign of your undying loyalty to Father State. May the ghost of Hugo Chavez cram a punji stick into your urethra.

          1. Jacking works better than plunging. Unless it is a neckline.

        4. Ah, and you moved there for more freedom?

        5. What country? Did you know there’s more than one down there?

        6. I only used to be canadian. now I live in S. America. stupid American

          A South American letting fly with the bare “American” for a North American? I see you blend in well.

        7. Thanks for pointing that out. I suspect it will be a lot easier for someone to shoot you or push you into a wood chipper now that you’re in a southern hemisphere narcostate.

    6. Was the payment required?

      1. That’s the point, isn’t it? Donation or a contractual agreement. Doesn’t matter because if money is changing hands, the palm of a bureacrat must be greased.

        1. “Dat’s a nice car youse gots there. Shame if sumtin’ was tah happen tah it.”

          /literally what’s going on in places like Portsmouth, NH (accents may vary)

    7. Why is there no problem if the rides were free when you expressed concern about it being a service for the public?

    8. Sometimes it can be hard to read and post on this board. So much trolling, and so much arguing, even with people I normally agree with. It seems like the slightest differences sometimes turn into the biggest hate-fests. But I keep coming back because the coverage is good and its nice to hear other, rare libertarian voices coming out in such a high concentration. But absolutely the thing I love most about this site is when the whole damn board teams up on some statist newcomer, who has no idea what he’s getting himself into and blows him right out of the house.

      Agile Cyborg! Get over here and write this canuck a eulogy!

      1. The internet is not a safe space.

        1. No its not, but maybe, *maybe* we could give these guys the benefit of the doubt.

          Lot’s of people believe that this sort of regulation is necessary because they’ve internalized a lot of axioms that . . . simply aren’t true.

          It can help to walk people through *why* they believe their statements are true simply by asking them to justify. Then you can point out the *specific* areas where they are operating under false assumptions. By getting them to explain the axioms they hold true, pointing out where these axioms obviously are at odds with reality (government has right, for example), and offering countering axioms with justification you can actually – well you’re not going to change anyone’s mind overnight, but you can infect them with *doubt*.

          And that doubt will spread to other areas of their lives.

          Better than the reflexive roaring of ‘Tits or GTFO!’ that this board has been moving towards over the last couple of years.

      2. blows him right out of the house hoose.

        FTFY.

      3. This guy deserves zero space penises.

      4. One does not simply summon Agile Cyborg.

        Especially since his presence is often more terrible than his absence.

    9. The Constitution says: “Congress shall make no law… abridging the right of the people to peaceably assemble… ”

      The Fourteenth Amendment then applies this to the state and local governments as well. Therefore, local governments may not constitutionally make laws that abridge the right of the people to peaceably assemble. Therefore, Portsmouth’s law is unconstitutional (illegal) and should be struck.

    10. Bit extreme to say that the city can’t regulate a taxi service.

      Yeah, the extreme part is saying government shouldn’t be able to control how two people make a voluntary transaction.

      Are you serious?

    11. Not if the person is allowed to leave without giving any money and can give whatever they want if they give.

  3. It’s always amusing, if only bitterly, when government shows its true colors of obdurate opposition to human safety and happiness in the name of its bogus authority

    You must be bitterly amused a lot, Brian, because the government shows its true colors constantly, every single day, if you just look at what it does and don’t listen to what it *says* it does, or wants to do.

    1. Heard a great quote yesterday: If somebody shows you who they are, you’d best believe them.

      1. That is a great quote, and applies to everyone but me.

        1. Has anyone ever survived you showing them who you really are?

          1. A version of the quote is attributable to Maya Angelou. I don’t know what to think anymore.

      2. There’s a very old one that does the job just fine, Paul.

        “Actions speak louder than words.”

        1. “Yeah, but everybody’s a jerk. You, me, this jerk. That’s my philosophy.”

          1. Professor Hubert Farnsworth: Obviously your thoughts are being transmitted on the same frequency.

            Tenant with Cell Phone: They’re on my cell phone too.

            Bender: Madame, I believe you’re mistaken

            Bender: [voice from cell phone] Wow, that lady’s got a huge ass.

            Bender: [spoken] Those could be anyone’s thoughts, fatass.

        2. That’s old?

          Fuck, I thought I coined that.

  4. “Tip? No sir, it was a voluntary climate change carbon indulgence.”

    1. Per the Holy Edict of Al Gore, Peace be Upon Him.

      1. I would have said “Fatwa”, but I’m not that mean.

        1. Per the Holy Edict Fatwa of Al Gore, Peace be Upon Him

          I cannot argue with your logic…

    2. Be careful when saying that ‘just the tip’ is OK…..

  5. On a date, I spent $100 on sushi for this hot Japanese gal. Since I scored, is it squid pro quo?

    1. Spare us your tentacle porn.

      1. The reach around means the squid is a prostitute. We need regulation.

          1. I heard spaghetti with squid ink tastes good.

              1. Stop speaking squiggle, pervert. I’m telling Trump.

              1. Is that fucking Espanol? Now you done it. I’m speed dialing the coif.

                1. It’s Catalan you philistine! Also, try the fideu? negra if you prefer noodles to rice.

                2. Arr?s negre

                  Fucking Mexicans don’t know how to talk Latin, it’s Arroz Negro, duh!

                  1. Take your Castilian privilege somewhere else.

              2. Rice should never be any color except white. White rice man, white rice. Black beans, yes, black rice, hell no.

    2. That was so terrible that as punishment, you have to spend a full day in the comments for Jezebel and a full day in the comments for PoliceOne instead of being here.

      1. How long before I got banned? I’m barely tolerated here.

        1. Look, if we haven’t kicked SugarFree out for the mental torture he inflicts on us on a regular basis, you’re probably safe.

          1. I have a guy at work I have dubbed “The Canary” for that very reason.

        2. Only a handful of people have ever been banned, and you aren’t racist or batshit insane enough to join their illustrious ranks.

          1. I don’t mean from here, I mean from Jezebel or PoliceOne. I tend to bite when fellating the state.

            1. Didn’t take me long to get banned from huffpo.

    3. $100 worth of sushi? Is she a sumo wrestler?

      1. Sumo wrestlers eat chanko nabe. $100 on Sushi is easy if you’re drinking sake. Mmmmm.

        1. Ah, I see, so it wasn’t the sushi that got you to home plate.

        2. Ah, I see, so it wasn’t the sushi that got you to home plate.

          1. Fucking squirrels. How do I say that like an Asian? Fuck a you skorrels!

            1. Funny. Squirrel and Cinderella are probably the two most difficult words for them to pronounce.

              1. Also, In Japanese, nut and squirrel reads as “kuritorisu”.

                1. Germans can’t pronounce “squirrel” correctly as well.

                  Ausgezeichnet!

                2. Fun story, I play MMOs off and on, and one of the tanks in my raiding group was a German guy. So after seeing that video of Germans trying to say squirrel, I renamed my character to SquirrelGirl, because I’m a nerd like that. (For those that don’t know, there is actually a Marvel comic character named Squirrel Girl. She has the power to control squirrels.)

                  When talking over Vent, it basically turned into that scene from the South Park movie where the Canadian ambassador was addressing the UN and being asked what it was all aboot.

                  “Could you please explain where SquirrelGirl is supposed to go again?” “Why do you guys keep asking me about Schwkoorlgirl?.” Once he figured out why everybody was laughing their asses off on Vent, He pulled a ‘fuck you, I’m out’ once he figured out everybody was laughing at him.

                  So I got kicked from the raid group, since good tanks are hard to find, and mediocre DPS are fairly easy to find. That said, it was a fairly amicable split, MMO raids are usually treated as serious business. Making everybody laugh so hard they have to kick you is a badge of honor.

              2. My wife can’t say it either. She’s not Asian, but it sound like she’s saying Skorl. I’m like ‘squirrel, honey’, and she’s like ‘Skorl, that’s what I said!’, lol.

              3. Funny. Squirrel and Cinderella are probably the two most difficult words for them to pronounce.

                Not sure about all Latin language speakers, but Brasilians seem to have a real problem with words that end with multiple consonants. For instance, world. My wife had the hardest time with this, good grief, I can’t count the hours I spent with her saying ‘world’ and she would repeat ‘woooorl’.

              4. Go back and watch…I forget which Bruce Lee movie…and listen to him try to pronounce “Mr. Braithwaite”. I think it was ‘Enter the Dragon’?

            2. I used to have fun making my ex pronounce any word beginning with “th”.

  6. OT – Orin Kerr shows us how Radley Balko was mean to the poor, innocent cops who broke into the home of some innocent people in search of nonexistent marijuana:

    “No, a federal judge did not rule that drinking tea and shopping at a gardening store amounts to probable cause…

    “With the benefit of hindsight, all the suspect did was drink tea and buy supplies to grow vegetables. That explains Balko’s headline….[ya think?]

    “In his opinion, Judge Lungstrum concludes that having two positive field tests for THC, at different times, is enough evidence to avoid personal liability for the officers….

    “”In his blog post, Balko argues that the problem with relying on field test results is that the field tests used in this case were very unreliable….

    “…this part of the case was just about whether the officers knew enough about the false positive rates of field tests to challenge the warrant based on the absence of that information in the affidavit.”

    1. “It’s OK, officer, you just didn’t know how inaccurate your field-testing devices were. Not your fault.”

      1. But did the officers get home to their loved ones safely at the end of the day? That’s really all that matters.

      2. “Error bars? That’s like jail, right.”

      3. Wasn’t there a SCOTUS case recently that basically said an otherwise illegal stop is legal if the cop was just ignorant of the law? Or did that one get overturned?

        Also, maybe this is an improvement over drug sniffing dogs? At least these field-testing devices probable cause machines won’t die if left in a squad car over the weekend.

        1. Heien v. North Carolina.

      4. Yes, only for police offices is “stupid” a “get out of jail free card”.

    2. Those tomato plants looked just like drugs!

  7. If they’re not going to let you off for donations to hookers, then they’re not going to let you off for donations to drivers.

    They just want to be consistent.

    1. …? I am pretty sure that I can still make political donations.

      1. Paid drivers: the new human slaves.

          1. *delayed narrow gaze*

      2. Hookers aren’t as aggressive with direct mail.

        1. I know, they need to step up their game.

  8. This photo was posted, right? God, it’s so fucking unbearable.

    1. “How do I tie this thing again?”

      *gaggle of staffers arrive, shrug and say “I dunno.”*

    2. Nothings says asshole like that picture. Except for all of the other Obama photos that is.

    3. Scratch a Statist, find a punchable face.

      1. Double Heil. Nice.

  9. ASS GAS OR GRASS NO ONE RIDES FOR FREE

    1. Oh great, another Chipotle subthread.

    2. Well since I got no grass, I got to go with “ASS GAS”. Of course, at my age some of that ass gas comes with lumps in it, so I hope you are cool with that.

  10. I reported earlier about David’s problems in New Hampshire as an Uber revolutionary

    The company should adopt that slogan. “Join our cause against the empire. Become an Uber revolutionary!” [*]

    (he’s facing felony wiretap charges for video-ing a bar bouncer threatening him for his then-Uber driving)

    [*] May entail jail time. Sorry, we can’t bail you out.

  11. Beard review: Cheeks, splendid and fluffy. Mustache, needs work.

  12. Can’t be cutting into those dui stats.

      1. I leave amateur nights to the amateurs. Prolly start horndogging on the woman early and be snoring before the ball drops.

        1. Before the ball drops. Sex with a narcoleptic borders on rape.

          1. It’s ok. It’s not rape rape.

      2. “Serrano’s got the disks.” That is a great movie.

  13. Why not just get donations from persons other than those you give the rides to? No quid pro quo, no taxi service.

    1. Breath mints only $5!

    2. GoFundMe: Charles Bukowski goes home, writes you a poem.

      1. In this case, doesn’t have to write you in particular anything. Just a charitable ride service. Get the funding, maybe even 501(c)3 status (so someone who files schedule A-B can get a deduction), provide your community w free emergency, or non-emergency, rides. & who knows, maybe some day you will need & get a ride. It could be as small as a single car & driver, or a whole fleet of paid drivers. The drivers are paid by the company, the company is paid by donations. Then instead of getting political flak, you wind up getting awards & recognition by the politicos.

        1. Now I know why he drank so much.

          *cracks open another beer, refocuses 40W hate beam on lawyers *

  14. Obviously the solution is to block I-95.

    #DrunkLivesMatter

  15. Ha! You think a $500 fine for ‘accepting a tip’ is something?

    NYC Will Fine You $250,000 For ‘Misgendering’ A Transsexual

      1. “The victim of your ire preferred to be called ‘they’. That will be $250,000.”

        *** pounds gavel ***

        1. Fuck xir honor and the horse xir honor rode in on.

          1. You had better stay in Massachusetts, Quincy.

              1. Also: Pervert.

    1. I’m still not clear on how the “Commission on Human Rights” is entitled to make law. Yeah, FYTW.

    2. So how does this apply to Eddie Murphy giving a tranny a lift?

  16. Wait, does this apply to road head too? Because if I can’t exchange rides for BJs anymore, I won’t bother to pick up any more teenage runaways.

  17. For all you free-staters out there who want me to pledge to move to NH, answer one simple question for me: why does “Acting Deputy Police Chief Frank Warchol” not fear for his life after making such statements? Are you all somehow short of wood chippers in Portsmouth?

    1. Because it’s just a few cranky assholes who give a shit about it?

  18. Public safety? No no no, my friend. They only give a damn about public safety when it is trotted out as an excuse to limit/remove your Constitutional rights. That’s the only time ‘public safety’ actually matters. C’mon, guys. They don’t care if you die in a ditch tomorrow so long as you leave a little bit of estate to tax.

  19. The unseen, per Bastiat, would be the fair number of people who are still alive or have not been injured due to drunks being kept off roads by having the option to have a ride share. We don’t know how many of those there are. It can only be guessed at. They surely never enter the conversation because they are living their lives as usual.

  20. I have never understood the public safety argument of government regulating taxi service. If I provide somebody with a free ride from point A to point B, government couldn’t care less. If my passenger gives me $5 for a ride, it suddenly becomes a pressing safety concern that can only remedied through additional licensing and taxation.

    1. It’s the same thing with prostitution. It’s perfectly legal to have sex with whomever you please, but if a 20 dollar bill changes hands, it’s suddenly a matter for violent government intervention.

      It all stems from the fear and hatred of profit motives, I think. The regulation enthusiasts see that economic transactions add up to form market forces, and since market forces might affect people, the government is justified in “regulating” those transactions. They just forget that market forces are the cumulative results of people making decisions, and they fail to realize that they can’t control market forces without removing someone else’s freedom to engage in voluntary transactions. So the total amount of freedom is not increased at all.

  21. Im making over $9k a month working part time. I kept hearing other people tell me how much money they can make online so I decided to look into it. Well, it was all true and has totally changed my life. This is what I do,

    ———- http://www.onlinejobs100.com

  22. Im making over $9k a month working part time. I kept hearing other people tell me how much money they can make online so I decided to look into it. Well, it was all true and has totally changed my life. This is what I do,,,,,,,,,,,,,,

    ———- http://www.onlinejobs100.com

  23. Ah yes
    The magic words
    “PUBLIC SAFETY”
    In the end, every right will be taken
    in the name of “Public safety”

  24. indeed Such was the case with the current government..are u agree?

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