Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Protectionism is good for you! ....by I'm Spartacus.

It seems whenever someone speaks out on behalf of the cab trade, the interviewer says 'your just being protectionist' as if that something to be ashamed off.

Well let's give them the message that yes we are definitely being protectionist and spell out loud and clear what we are protecting.

We are protecting:
1. The hard won exclusive right to ply for hire.

2. Ensuring the best cab trade in the world has both a present and a future.

3. The public, from the riff raff that seeks to put them in danger such as the unsafe Pedicab, the unlicensed tout and the uninsured PH driver who touts a job or takes a virtual hail from an app.

Of course you will get the multi national vampires stating its free trade and that's good.

Well experience has shown (utilities, banks, supermarkets etc.) that it is not, as soon as these people have 'market dominance' they squeeze every penny out of the consumer and kill any new competition.

The vulnerability of the late night passenger and those who need the special facilities of a purpose designed cab prove that they and the cab trade need both regulation and protection.

Throwing us and therefore them to the wolves of corporate greed who are beyond the reach of the regulatory and taxation authorities is reckless.

If these raiders were offering cut price unregulated legal services, accountancy or any other so called 'professional services', you can be sure the 'great and the good' would move swiftly to stamp it out!

How then do we best protect ourselves?

There has been a lot of moves by many to bring all the cab trade together to speak as one, that seems doomed to failure as small minded parochial self interest rules at present.

We have a workable alternative, in that we rebuild a version of the old London taxi board where all (and it must be all) those who represent the trade (drivers unions and local associations and fleet owners come together), the others such as circuits, schools, manufacturers etc. can contribute but we need to tread  carefully and set rules about conflicts of interest and have a good leadership.

             Protectionism is good for you!


Anonymous said...

Good post Spartacus as ever spot on.

Anonymous said...

Who will show me the body or live person of Spartacus
Slave you were and slave you will stay
But I will spare you crucifixion.

Anonymous said...

Well said. You have to protect and regulate any public service or the centre right - Tories, UKIP etc etc - will flog it, bleed it dry for share holders then move on to its next victim. Cameroon is presently wheeling the NHS out of the back door and flogging it to american hedge funds via some scheme I don't understand. We are fatted calves. You have anything to do with the aforementioned loons and it's good bye cab trade hello free market enterprise.

Anonymous said...

Taxi board, how will that work? Another talking shop? How would you apportion votes? Would a group with 10 members get the same vote as say the LTDA with 10,000 members? Who would elect them? If you sent out 24000 ballot papers and 75% didn't reply how could it be seen as democratic? Better to encourage all drivers to join an existing group!

The Voice Of Reason said...


All taxi board members should come forward and stand for election by the trade, not by their org.

TfL would negotiate only with Taxi board.

Trade orgs could then carry on as they are at present, with no real power.

Every driver would get one vote per election

As John Kennedy said back in 2007
"One badge, one vote"

Top 8/10 (to be decided) Candidates would sit on Taxi board for 2 years.

Taxi board should be financed by licence fees not trade orgs or TfL.

Not expecting all suggestions to be set in stone, but it's a start.

Anonymous said...

The first thing that needs to happen is a full investigation of the LTDA.
They claim to have more than 10000 members and at £18 a month which equates to £180k a month.
What exactly are they spending this money on ? They certainly dont seem to be representing their members on any issues.
In addition they have revenue from the property that they own and previous revenue from other sources .

Their voting system seems to be dubious at best, with the same members like Oddy being re-elected regardless of performance.
The LTDA seems to be in collusion with TFL and deliberately excludes all other trade orgs.
The first step to proper taxi trade representation is REMOVE THE OBSTACLE STOPPING IT

london_boy said...

Would there be room at this Table for yellow badge drivers !!! or would we be excluded as we are now .

Anonymous said...

If the elections were independant and fair and all cabbies had a vote the LTDA rep will win? He will tell his 10000 members to vote for him! LCDC would come second, RMT and Unite follow Pretty much what we have now?

Far better that all the lost souls calling for unity whilst not belonging to anything, either joined an existing group and tried to steer it (surely if their ideas are that good the existing membership would agree?)or they start their own group and everyone would then migrate to them because they are so innovative?
Or is it the same old people belong to nothing, got loads to say, can't get on in existing groups and just want to be leader?

Anonymous said...

People will vote for whoever they see fit, a condition of standing as chair would be that that person could not hold office in a trade org.