What are they going to do? The system is crony to the core. Cab companies are calling in favors. Hillary is hinting that she has Uber in her (politically calculated) sites.
We need to work toward an economy where companies can operate without being shaken down on an ongoing basis by cronies. People (and companies) who are good at what they do want to play a fair game, or at least close to a fair game. They have a better chance of winning. But when the game is rigged it gets tough to compete without paying off the powers that be.
Uber’s solution? “Regulatory hacking.” It’ll be interesting to see what the company means by this.
David Plouffe, who led Barack Obama’s 2008 presidential campaign before joining Uber last year, returned to Washington on Tuesday to put a positive spin on a company that’s drawn increased scrutiny from regulators and become a target of many politicians and interest groups. Rather than adopt the defensive posture companies typically employ in Washington—or even the aggressive one Uber has become infamous for globally—Plouffe cast the company as the solution to a whole host of policy and economic maladies that governments have failed to solve.
Plouffe spoke to an audience at a local tech incubator devoted to, among other endeavors, “regulatory hacking.” That was the thrust of Plouffe’s business in Washington. His message was that Uber is being mischaracterized by its critics and should not be thought of as a regulatory conundrum for federal bureaucrats but as a benign force for social and economic uplift. He said the San Francisco car-booking app is “more of an opportunity to be seized on than a problem to be solved.” Taking things a step further, Plouffe described Uber as “a small miracle.”