The rich, if they really, really try hard can come close to understanding a worker’s reality but not quite all the way. That schism is what is in the brain – the wiring caused by fear and hunger – by living paycheck to paycheck and knowing that one major illness or accident is all that separates a worker from the poor house. The rich don’t have that in their brains. Or if they were once poor they lose it. That tenuousness, that worker’s reality.
Even if the rich person has some empathy toward worker’s conditions they just don’t get it. One of the great liberal media outlets is The Huffington Post. Arianna Huffington, who began this great circle of life in this country as a conservative Republican and made her bones by marrying a gay rich Republican and then divorcing him taking a chunk of that fortune. She then began the internet news site that bears her name. The Huffington Press, one of those great liberal sites really neo-liberal in message instead of New Deal liberal, at times addresses worker’s reality but mostly not. Arianna, who built The Post off of free labor and then got sued for it, won in court because she was smart enough to not put pen and ink to any of her promises.
So it’s easy to see how she would assume it to be real neat that corporations have a vision toward the future and the hell with worker’s reality. Ms. Huffington just joined Uber’s board, a company not only of vision of service, but relying on the desperation of a working class desperately looking for wages in any corner.
Uber likes to pretend that its workers are Independent Contractors though real independent Contractors are not told and then forced to charge a set rate no matter what their personal expense. Independent Contractors are allowed to collect tips. Independent Contractors are not dependent on a company’s GPS tracking system. I could go on and on. This is all part of a worker’s reality.
That’s the thing about the left – they’re quick to support alternative forms of business (and to save a buck if they can) regardless of how those alternative companies treat their workers. Just look at work practices at Amazon and Apple and now at Uber. Working in a coal mine is not the only bad thin g in a worker’s reality.
A blurb from Arianna and then another from an Uber critic follows:
“Joining the Uber board, which CEO Travis Kalanick announced this morning, represents for me an opportunity to have an impact on a global scale in a way that truly adds value to people’s lives — which are also priorities for us at The Huffington Post.”
“I’ve always been fascinated by all the ways we are transforming how we work, how we live, how we consume media, how we renew and recharge ourselves, and indeed how we move around in a city. Uber has transformed not just transportation — intending to make it “as reliable as running water, everywhere and for everyone” — but cities and our relationship to them. And like Travis and Uber, I’m passionate about cities. I’ve been working with mayors around the world through The Huffington Post’s What’s Working initiative and through Bloomberg Philanthropies’ What Works Cities program, which is all about helping cities use data to improve citizens’ lives. So I’m very much looking forward to the opportunity to work within Uber to keep making our cities better places to live, move and work.”
“And then there’s Travis. In the last few years, he has become a close friend, and I have been inspired by the big, bold bets he is constantly placing, by his gift for innovating his way out of challenges and by his ability to execute at the most detailed level.” http://www.huffingtonpost.com/arianna-huffington/why-im-joining-ubers-board_b_9788320.html
“Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak just threw some shade at Uber.”
“On Monday, at the Future Transport Summit in Sydney, Australia, Wozniak denounced the ride-hailing company’s disputed labor practices and critiqued what he sees as its monopolistic ambitions, according to Mashable.”
“Like a lot of people, I have some distrust of Uber and how their drivers don’t really realize at first that they aren’t making much money, maybe losing money on the wear and tear of their cars,” Wozniak told reporters at the summit.”
“Wozniak isn’t alone in criticizing the app. Class-action lawsuits filed by Uber drivers in California and Michigan argue that the company wrongly classifies its workers as independent contractors, allowing it to drive down their wages and withhold benefits. As contractors, drivers are exempt from minimum wage requirements and don’t receive certain state and federal benefits. Both lawsuits contend that Uber drivers are, in fact, employees, a designation that comes with greater labor protections.” http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/steve-wozniak-criticizes-uber_us_5714f72be4b0018f9cba7bf1?utm_hp_ref=uber