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On jammed SF streets, ride hailing collides with urban well-being - San Francisco Chronicle
Date:  5/16/2017
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Written by: David Talbot
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Travis Kalanick, Uber co-founder and CEO. Photo: Lea Suzuki, The Chronicle
Photo: Lea Suzuki, The Chronicle

Are Uber and Lyft rakish rule-breakers in the great tradition of American swashbuckling capitalism? Or are they law-defying corporate predators, flooding city streets with their unregulated vehicles and exploiting their drivers — sorry, “independent contractors” — in the process?

More and more city governments around the world lean to the second interpretation of the ride-hailing giants whose fleets now dominate the urban landscape. But with their enormous political clout in state and municipal offices, Uber and Lyft have resisted regulatory efforts — nowhere more successfully than in California, where the state Public Utilities Commission’s oversight has been laughably feeble.

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