Saturday, December 19, 2015

Letters To The Editor : ITV Tonight's The Secret Of The Taxi Wars

       Image taken from ITV News Website.

Dear Taxi Leaks

Some Cab drivers are saying ITV's Jonathan Maitland  got the message across to the general public; let's have a closer look at his carefully put together message:

Uber are involved in tax avoidance.

Uber drivers are obtaining the incorrect insurance and consequently putting the general public at risk by driving with void policies.

Uber drivers are being exploited with low pay.

Jonathan Maitland explained quite clearly the differences between Private Hire and Licensed Taxis. He clearly understands what a PH driver is permitted to do and not to do. ie, plying for hire, touting, ranking etc. 

It was quite deliberate that he omitted ALL of the damaging facts and statistics regarding:

Inadequate Background checks.

Sexual innuendo/ Rape, violent racist motivated attack of a lone female, religious bigotry, terrorist motivated attacks.

Customers thrown out and abandoned in the middle of nowhere.

The atrocious standard of operation of a motor vehicles driven by Uber partners.

The fact that many Uber drivers are intentionally and willfully signing off and back onto the Uber platform to cause price surging to be implemented.

Many Uber drivers speak English to a very low standard. The Uber driver in the program was carefully selected because of his clean appearance and the fact that could speak perfect English !

Uber drivers allegedly sharing their vehicles with unlicensed individuals. There are many instances on social media claiming the driver that turned up for the ride, clearly wasn't the driver on the driver app profile!

Hacked accounts and the plethora of complaints on social media claiming claiming Uber customer service is non existent (Anthea Turner). 

Now let's look at Jonathan Maitland's subliminal message - the real message:

London Taxi drivers are paranoid about Uber; they are internet trolls involved in a propaganda smear campaign against Uber using Twitter/ social media and the #beenubered.

Maitland, throughout the broadcast referred to Uber/PH drivers and cars as... Cab drivers and Taxis, OVER and OVER again

In my opinion this was deliberate and designed to send a subliminal message that PH and Uber are Taxis !

Secondly, WHY did the ITV decide to air this program seven day before Christmas?

In my opinion this program was a carefully crafted piece of propaganda by ITV to promote Uber as a victim of the London Taxi Trade.

        

            Watch complete program here:

  

 

Taxi Leaks Reader's Comment:

MESSAGE TO ALL OF THOSE DRIVERS WHO THINK WE ARE NOT IN TROUBLE & WE'RE JUST GOING THROUGH A TEMPORARY HIATUS: WE'RE NOT! 


Since the 80's, this is the most disastrous Christmas working period I have ever known. I consider it's now been reduced to the point of temptation - i.e to take a chance on work you previously wouldn't touch with a barge pole. 

For example; the day long drinker & once a year brigade who can't hold their booze - that are numerous at this time of year! I won't risk it but then again, I don't have a young family. Some younger drivers have to take the risk, as they are really strapped up, particularly at this time of the year.

We really have been let down by everyone, during this ever increasing period of reduced work. 

Trade bodies, governing authorities and many drivers who have sat back and let others protest, whilst they continue working - if they don't help out soon there will be no work! 

(Although, I did see a comment by a driver on social media, that we could be in danger of exaggerating our situation, as apparently, this persons income has progressively increased over a 30 month period - I can only assume he/she started off by doing a 30 minute day and was increased by a minute each day, every shift, over this period - or it's the eighth wonder of the world. However, then again maybe it's just luck - a lot of it!).  


Let's now face it - unless we all collectively find a solution, very soon, to our problems and all support one another it's 'goodnight Vienna'! All this talk of the public love us and we're an icon, etc, etc, won't save us and although we do have a lot of support it is mainly associated to our older clientele. 


Unfortunately, I think a lot of the younger population would get in a dustcart, if they thought it was cheaper than us and readily available. The problem is that in their world it is the fast & cheap service they require. This is the click of a button environment, that has been exploited by you know who, associated to weak regulation. 


Why those who purport to act in our interest never saw this coming I don't know. This coupled with a dire and weak enforcement agency, is the root cause of our problems. 


If and it's a big if, we can ride this out, we need to make sure we all get together as one. 


And ensure we are never attacked in this way again, by hopefully having ONE major body representing us, so we cannot ever be attacked again by the divide and rule brigade. 


We have a lot to contend with; poor regulation, driver apathy, big money conglomerates and to quote an old pre decimal observation. . . The bent as a nine bob note scenario (younger drivers, ask your father to explain - or grandfather:-). Be lucky - as we'll all have to be, come January:-)!

  

Dear Editor:

I have watched the show on catch-up and thought it leaned in our favour, however using just one local small minicab company, Spotty Cars, (what a terrible name - are they based in acne or something?) did little to show the seriousness of the situation! I think if they had spoken to PH giants like Addison Lee or Green Tomatoes, it would have given more insight into how the minicab-trade has also been let down by TfL. 

Members from the London Assembly were interviewed, but no senior people from TfLTPH regarding how UBER flout the laws whilst TfL have turned a blind eye!

They did however complain how some taxi-drivers use social media, which reflected badly on our trade. They could have also pointed out some of the many tweets from passengers who have been over charged, assaulted, punched in the face whilst being racially abused, women being told they are inappropriately dressed - the list goes on and on!

It was also good that it was pointed out that a race by two people, from the same start and finishing at the same place was won by the taxi 15 minutes before UBER arrived costing little more than £1 extra - in Birmingham where again a race took place, the taxi worked out £5 cheaper due to Uber's surge charging! 

All in all though a good stab at highlighting some of the problems we face, which the media usually always gets wrong! But again Uber were constantly referred to as Taxis and their drivers Cab drivers. 


Dear Taxi_Leaks:

Did any of your readers notice, that at the end of the race, the taxi dropped off at the Euston taxi drop off point.

But the Uber driver was clearly seen to drop off on the zig zags outside Euston! An offence that if witnessed by a police officer would result in a prosicution and three points (minimum) on the drivers licence. 
And not a word about this from either Jonathan or the program makers!!! 

Also, Uber on FaceBook- Bigoted homophobic and the sexually perverse will be able to check out their victims profile on FaceBook. 


Dear Jim :

AMAZING BARGINS TO BE HAD ON UBER POOL.

SHARE WITH TWO DRUNK MEN AND SAVE 50p

WHAT A BARGIN !!!



Friday, December 18, 2015

Meanwhile back at the Pyramids! ... By I'm Spartacus.


We had the remarkable sight this week of PH drivers protesting outside TfL over terms and conditions and the over licensing by that 'Gold' standard licensing authority of ours.

I can't  help but remind me that the earliest recorded case of 'industrial action' was by the slaves of Egypt downing tools on the pyramids over food and accommodation issues.
it's noted that whilst pay remained an issue, better grub and board did follow.


Maybe we all need to take the message that no matter how powerful the 'enemy' seems if we conduct united, concerted and coordinated action it can bring results.

We have just seen the Taxiwars documentary that whilst not highlighting all the issues, Our opposition came out in a very poor light and we must keep highlighting that.

Watch here:

   

Alleged £250,000 A Week On PR
These people throw millions at PR and lobbying and for good reason but it's a very thin veneer when challenged and society in general are anti 'spin', what we have to do is spend time and money ensuring a light is shown on places that the PR 'gurus' move heaven and earth to conceal. 
I note Sports Direct are having a board meeting over concerns, we can speculate that this would not have happened without negative headlines.



So folks whilst some of us will spend at least a little time reflecting on those events in Bethlehem 2000 odd years ago, maybe after that think about those Pyramids further back in time.

Will we win?

Well we are  still in the ring, throwing punches hard and fast and this challenger must now know that the world champion won't be giving up the title without one hell of a scrap.

So Merry Christmas and the New Year message is:
'Seconds out, Round Two'

I'm Spartacus

Thursday, December 17, 2015

Just When You Thought It Can't Get Worse...Uber Announce Booking Through FaceBook Messenger...by Jim Thomas

Uber to allow users to "hail " minicabs directly from the FaceBook Messenger app.

The new service means Messenger users will be able to ask for an minicab without leaving the Facebook software. 

Users will not need to download the Uber app separately. (So are Uber now venturing into the instant hail cash market....is this legal)

"Uber on Messenger" began in parts of the US this week, the two firms said. 

The companies announced their new venture via separate blogs. 

Facebook has some 1.5 billion users globally and Uber is the world's biggest minicab-hailing app in terms of financing.

Facebook explained how the service will work in this video.


The two-step process involves tapping an address in a message or the car symbol in Messenger's menu of options and then selecting "Request a ride".
Uber will then send updates on the status of a car through Messenger.

If successful, the partnership between the firms will give Uber access to many new and potential clients - Facebook's Messenger app has some 700 million users worldwide

Editorial Comment: 
Obviously both Uber and FaceBook operate internationally. However, if they try to introduce this service in London, they will come up against a number of legislative regulations....not that Uber have taken a blind bit of notice of legislative regulation in the past, having the luxury of being supported by TfL's licensing department, who have consistently bent the regulations to suit Uber's operation. 

We asked if FaceBook were licensed as a PH operator; 


We then asked TfL if this service were to take off in London, what action would they take; 


Going in past performance, to be honest, these answers don't really put our fears to rest.

Today's vote on "do you feel in an Uber car?"
in today's Daily Express online.





Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Struggling London musician left penniless after hackers break into Uber account

A Londoner woke up on the weekend to discover his Uber profile had been hacked and his bank account emptied.

Neil, 35, from Ladbroke Grove, was billed just over £2700 for four journeys he never made.

He's adamant no one else had access to his phone, which was by his bedside all night, and is protected by a six digit pass code and touch ID fingerprint recognition.

Musician Neil noticed payments for £5, £756.03, £1395.89 and £551.97 had left his account overnight when he checked his bank statement on Saturday morning.  

He contacted Nationwide and was told Uber had made a number of withdrawals from my account.

“I’m a struggling musician with very little money at the best of times and it crippled me.”

When he contacted Uber to find out how his account had been hacked, Neil was given a cyber security lecture.

They advised him not to use the same passwords and email addresses across different platforms.

Worryingly, they also told him: “instances like this aren’t always preventable.”

As an apology, they offered Neil £12.95 off his next Uber – over two pounds less than new customers get just for signing up!

“They gave me the usual line of ‘we take your security very seriously’,” Neil said.

“But I want to know how somebody can go into your account and take your money.

“I’m disappointed Uber doesn’t have any safeguards against this – it’s obvious that a fare of £1,395 is suspicious.

“Offering me £12.95 was just insulting.”

 

It’s not the first time doubts have been cast over the Uber app’s security.

Earlier this year thousands of customers, including TV presenter and future, also claimed they were charged for trips they did not make. 


Uber finally agreed to  refund Neil, but he had no way of withdrawing money for nearly a week as the hack prompted Nationwide to cancel his debit card.

When asked to explain how Neil’s account was hacked and how other users can stay safe, an Uber spokesperson said:

“Someone would have got access to his password and logged into his account.”

When asked how users can stay safe, they repeated the line they have Neil:

“Our advice to Uber customers would be - don’t use the same username and password on all your online accounts.”

“There has been no contrition and no effort towards meaningful compensation for crippling Neil financially for a week.”

Uber Drivers Representative Group's Planned Demo At Windsor House Tomorrow, Goes Ahead.

Not a pretty sight... This dodgy duo seen leaving the office of Sajid Javid ???
  

The United Private Hire Drivers (UPHD) group has announced they just received the following note from TfL's Helen Chapman asking private hire drivers in London to call off their protest of TfL, planned for tomorrow. 

The ph say the response is totally inadequate and is much too little, much too late, from an organisation that has treated licensed private hire drivers as 3rd class citizens for far too long???

The drivers are demanding a cap on numbers which will reach 94,000 this week. TfL says it is lobbying for primary legislation to introduce a cap but when challenged (as always) fail to answer just what these efforts are and what response they are getting.

Another issue is drivers safety concerns with UberPool. Ms Chapman deftly side steps the questions asked. Garrett Emmerson was quoted in The Telegraph saying that assurances were sought and received on passenger safety and other issues. 

The group have asked for a copy of these assurances and rather than provide immediate access they have forced UPHD into a lengthy Freedom of Information process before any disclose can be made (sound familiar ?). 

In other words, TfL will not be willingly tell them! they will only do so if compelled to under the obligations of FOI laws. 

If Uber's assurances were so watertight why can't TfL pass those assurances on to drivers and the travelling public right now? 

In the first consultation round it was made clear with almost universal agreement that the trade was profoundly worried about the safety of UberPool. TfL acknowledged these concerns yet has pre-empted the consultation process by allowing ride sharing services to commence.

Ms Chapman well knows that Uber's terms of service both with drivers and passengers makes clear that Uber is not the transportation provider and bears no operational risk - The drivers do. 

Yet, TfL has not seen fit to consult with the drivers as operators of this service. 

TfL's instinct is only to deal with big money interests at Uber corporation and ignore the primary interests of it's licensees.

Whatever, legal and PR trickery TfL try to deploy the fact remains: drivers are being exploited and are having to work many more hours than is safe due to low pay which is in part due to overlicensing. 

TfL cannot abdicate responsibility for the inevitable public safety consequences of that.

Comments made & actions taken by TfL board members Wright, Liebreich and Dedring in any other properly functioning government body would result in calls for their immediate resignation. 

It seems the UPHD's are not assured by TfL's claim that they will carry out an impact assessment. 

Why have they not done this already? 

When will the results be known? 

Which outside bodies will be consulted? 

UPHD announce the demo is going ahead. 

Thursday at Windsor House, Victoria, SW1H 0TL.  12:15 - 14:00.

Below is Helen Chapman's email reply. 

Dear Mr Farrar

Thank you for your email regarding the protest you are planning to undertake outside Windsor House, Victoria, on 17 December. Garrett Emmerson has asked me to reply on his behalf.

I note that you intend to highlight three key issues at the protest: the capping of licences, concerns regarding UberPool and the requirement for TfL to carry out an equalities impact assessment.

Firstly, I would like to assure you that the Mayor and TfL share your concerns regarding the continuing rise of private hire vehicles (PHVs) and drivers in London, and believe this unprecedented rise to be unsustainable in the capital. However, as it stands, TfL is under a statutory obligation to grant a London PHV driver’s licence if the licensing criteria are met. The Mayor has called on the Government to provide TfL such powers and we would greatly appreciate support from all members of the trade on this matter.

Secondly, I want to make it clear that we have not licenced UberPool separately from Uber’s main operating licence; undertaking ride sharing services using licensed private hire vehicles does not require a separate operator’s licence under current legislation. This being said, TfL is currently considering to what extent, if any, private hire regulations should be modified in its application to the advance booking of private hire vehicles at separate fares. As you have referenced on your website, we have included proposals around this in our consultation for the review of Private Hire regulations. If you haven’t already responded, I would encourage to you to do so, at https://consultations.tfl.gov.uk/tph/private-hire-proposals.

We have made clear to Uber that we expect them to ensure all necessary steps are taken to ensure the safety of passengers, drivers and other road users at all times. Uber have given assurances including in relation to the provision of information and training for passengers and drivers, vehicle tracking, controls on the sharing of data and insurance. Passengers can also continue to provide their comments via the existing feedback function, which we understand will be used to analyse and assess the service.

I understand you are concerned that Uber did not consult with drivers before making changes to their terms and conditions; however, drivers choose which operator (or operators) they work for, and the working terms and conditions they are prepared to accept.

On your final point, we are undertaking an equalities impact assessment on our private hire regulation review proposals.

I hope that, in light of these reassurances, your group will reconsider your plans for a protest on 17 December.

Kind regards

Helen

Helen Chapman

General Manager

London Taxi & Private Hire | Transport for London


Editorial Comment...by Jim Thomas.
Although Ms Chapman has the worse record of demonstrations against TfLTPH, than any other director as General Manager, I must say that I totally agree with one of her statements in as much as the drivers choose to work for uber. 

If they don't like the T&Cs then they should go and work for another operator....Oh! hold on a minute, because TfLTPH are allowing Uber to run roughshod over regulation and legislation,  allegedly they're putting smaller outfits out of business. Apparently, there's now a narrowing of options for new drivers. 

One question I'd like answered; after being served up a section 12 order, limiting our demonstration at Windsor House to just 30 mins, how come Uber drivers have been granted 1hour 45 minutes to make their protest?

Perhaps we should all turn up tomorrow and spring board off the back of the UPHD demo. After all a cap on new PH licenses, safety issues with UberPool are issues that also affect us as well.

Great Expectations ! ..............by Semtex


With 2016 not very far away now, and the Christmas holiday almost upon us, our old London Taxi Trade still battles on as we always do, and always have done.

And what a year for our trade it has been !
Be honest, could we have possibly been up against any more barriers than we have ? 
The whole Hierarchy have betrayed us in a gut wrenching display of unfaithful treachery.
But why have they ? 
Why have they behaved in such a scurrilous way ?

Don't misunderstand me here. I clearly hear the people who chant that the world has to move on. I understand totally that progress moves faster than some of us are comfortable with. I also fully see where people are coming from when they say that technology is key to a more civilized and superior future. Life moves on they say, and you have to move with it !

For me, I am comfortable with ALL of the above, and agree with it. So I will carry on writing, but bear these points in mind for a minute.

Not too long ago, the London Taxi Trade were getting on with their lot, doing what we do so professionally, that once again we win another world class citation and award, as being the very best Taxi service on the planet !


I'm probably being a bit flash here, but I am never surprised when we win it either ! I have travelled extensively doing one thing or another in my life, and naturally have used Taxi Cabs worldwide.
Naturally, I am biased, but NOBODY in any other country I have been to, could hold a candle to us. Honestly !

Why then, would that be do you think ? Luck ? I doubt it ! Once again though, just bear that in mind for a moment, and I will return to it.

As I say, we were busy doing what we have done so well for hundreds of years. Moaning ? Course we were ! We wouldn't be BRITISH if we weren't moaning about something, would we ?

Moaning, groaning and getting the job done, just like so many professional industries and trades in our country.

From as far back as 2011, there were talks of a Supercab coming to all parts of the world. To be honest, I looked at it, scoffed and thought that the pilot scheme was merely pie in the sky. However, the Uber pilot scheme was rolled out, and I was amazed at how much it had so far been embraced worldwide. But in ALL examples of Uber's operational platform, it was the licensing criteria and structure that was key to whether Uber Operations failed or succeeded.

I looked at our Ministers. I looked at our Licensing Authorities. I looked at our Enforcement Programme. I looked at our MP's and I looked at who were backing Uber..................................AND I BECAME EXTREMELY SCARED !
After my initial fear calmed and I had time to compose myself, I was utterly convinced that Men Were Coming To Kill Us !


As written in my posts before, I have some fantastic friends in this game of ours, many putting unrealistic chunks of their family time, into trying to make a clearer path for all of us. Some of my mates are militant, some of them are democratic.

Mates of mine don't need me to describe what side I belong to. Yes, I am naturally militant by nature. I have lived most of my life trying to ascertain whether an adversary can be trusted....or not.
But, that said, I have also been part of some very democratic success stories too.

In my time though, and through experience gained from all over the world, one rule became abundantly clear !

And that is, it is totally futile ...................TO FIGHT CORRUPTION with DEMOCRACY !

It simply CANNOT be done ! You may as well try to extinguish a fire with a can of petrol, or clean up an oil slick with water ! Totally and utterly pointless ! It just doesn't work !

It doesn't matter how democratic a country, a council, an authority, or whatever ..., if the opposition that you are trying to fight are bent, then to attempt to deal with them through playing the rules is a complete waste of financial and physical resources.

Democracy is fantastic. Its the way forward. Its the most civil method of resolving issues on the planet. BUT ONLY IF BOTH SIDES ARE STRAIGHT. 

If it transpires then that the opposition you are dealing with, struggle to lay in bed straight, let alone behave in a professional capacity as straight,  then you've got a problem.   
A Huge one!

Remember a few paragraphs ago, I was saying how much I agree with technology, moving on and progress and the likes ?
Well how about then if something comes along, more or less out of the blue and actually manages to rock a strong, steadfast, established world known brand ?
For example, Uber come along from seemingly nowhere and attempt to knock the Great London Cab Trade out of the picture.

On paper, and if you went into the bank and gave that business projection to any UK Bank manager, he or she would laugh you out the branch ! 
How could you better the legendary London Black Cab Trade? 


It hasn't been there for 350 years because people like the colour black ! Has it ? 
No, of course not !
It has been there because our brand is not only world famously known for professionalism, safety, value and trustworthiness, but because our drivers are vigorously TESTED, not just in topographical skills, but medically, driving skills, financial history, and character, not to mention if the person is legally in the country !

So you are sitting in front of the bank manager. You pass over your business plan and he looks at you as though you are a lunatic ! But....you have an ace up your sleeve ! You have kept this card till last ! You then smugly tell the bank manager that you can undercut the London Cab Trade on price ! Your drivers wont know where they are or how to get to their destination, maybe, but THEY ARE CHEAP!  
He still looks at you over your business plan projection as if you have just managed to scale the wall at Rampton ! And he would be right to !

I would expect the same reception, should I approach my bank manager and explain that by simply undercutting Eddie Stobart on price, I should expect the bank's blessing and walk out there with millions of pounds start up funding.
I am no bank manager, but would be wholeheartedly astonished if my bank manager thought that I could unseat the legendary Stobart brand......JUST BECAUSE I WAS CHEAPER !!

Stobart's brand is world famous ! Their drivers are vetted, they're trucks are fastidiously maintained, they have respect, they have followers, they are reliable, they are iconic ! Customers KNOW they' re load is in safe hands !  It would take an awful lot more than undercutting Eddie Stobart, to knock them off their deserved high perch ! And quiet rightly too !

So what's this Uber story then ? 
Do they offer a BETTER service than our trade ?......... Of course they don't !

 Is there a clear example of Uber having better, more PROFESSIONAL drivers than the London Cab Trade ?......... Only if you have just inhaled a cannabis bong , maybe !

Are Uber's safety record and customer care feedbacks an example to all of us ?........ Perhaps if you have lived in Colombia for many years they are !

Are Uber's drivers vigorously TESTED for National Security threat? Driving standards as a professional?  in receipt of a Vigorous Medical test? Tested by a professional for thorough Topographical Knowledge of the chosen working area, i.e London ?..............

No ! For some mysterious and as of yet unknown reason, all of the above are deemed unnecessary.

Are Uber cheaper ?............ Sometimes they are, sometimes they are twenty times more expensive than a London Cab ! However, if you are attacked, raped or killed in an Uber, they are certainly not cheap !

What's Uber's general safety standard like ?.................. Shite !

Now back to my former paragraph again. Yes I'm all for improvement, of course I want a better standard, and naturally I welcome healthy competition !

But not from a band of cowboy mini cab operators like this mob ! But here's a surprise ! I don't blame Uber one bit ! Like I said earlier, they can only set their stall out if the governing hierarchy allow it !
 
As stated, yes, I am up for improvement, yes, I believe in moving on, but...............Uber are doing this? Are you sure ?


So over to TFL, Mayor Johnson and City Hall then !  If it is true what I have written about Uber above, and indeed it is clearly NOT a case of improvement, better safety, a superior service and vigorous driver testing...................THEN HOW COME UBER ARE WELCOMED WITH SUCH OPEN ARMS ?

OK, so the shadows on the 1969 Apollo Moon Landing were suspicious, JFK's assassin may well have been up on the grassy knoll, and Princess Diana's tragic end may very well have been orchestrated by persons unknown. We shall probably never know.

BUT LET'S BE FAIR HERE ! ARE TFL TRYING TO TELL US THAT UBER'S LICENCE APPLICATION HAS BEEN SQUEAKY CLEAN, 100% CORRECT AND UPFRONT FROM THE VERY FIRST APPLICATION FOR AN OPERATORS LICENCE ??

WHO WAS IT AT TFL WHO REFERRED TO UBER'S OPERATION AND SAID, "ITS WHAT THE PUBLIC WANTS !" ?

NO IT AINT ! OH NO IT AINT, SIR ! NOT ONE LITTLE BIT, YOU LITTLE PANTS ON FIRE, RASCAL, YOU !

Its what YOU WANT, isn't it Pinnochio ? Uber have been given a carte blanch safe forward passage, not because the public want it, its because TFL & CITY HALL WANT IT ! ISNT IT ?

Why on earth could that be then ? 
My mind is in turmoil ! WHY, would they want Uber instead of us ? 
Uber is an inferior service. Its sometimes cheap, but its dangerous, unreliable, and has either no safety or professional driving standards to adhere to or to boast about. I know TFL and City Hall have to be unbiased in ground movement operations, of course I do.
 
But surely TFL and City Hall have a duty of care to London's travelling passengers ? 
Surely that's part of their remit and responsibility ?

And them clowns up there reckon ITS WHAT THE PUBLIC WANT ?!!   Yeah ?
  Really ? 
The public want raping, do they ? 
The public want their bank accounts emptied when they sleep, do they ? 
The public want to be subjected to dangerous sexual innuendo during their journey, do they ?
The public want driving the wrong way up Gower Street, do they ? 
The public want knocking up in the air and killing in Islington, do they ?

YOU ABSOLUTELY POSITIVE ABOUT THAT ? 
IS IT HONESTLY WHAT THE PUBLIC WANT, OUR PANTS ON FIRE PINNOCHIO HIREARCHY?

Its not, is it ? 
Its what you lot want, isn't it ! Its why you and your MP's , Mayor and Governors want us out the way, isn't it ?
Its the same reason as you lot are calling for the acid tested Knowledge Exam to be scrapped too.
You know very well that the Knowledge puts us a million miles in front of you're Uber heroes, yet you still make our playing field murderously unfair, in favour of the never ending, money making, opium like trade that the Yankee Mini Cab gangsters generate !

I cant think or begin to understand why our hierarchy would make it so easy for Uber to work their operation in and on an unhealthy professional playing field. Maybe the award winning Investigative Journalist working on this with me for 7 months, will make it clearer for us eventually. We are doing OK, but need a little more time .

Our video evidence collated is damming. I wont make the same mistake with the BBC as I did last time either !

Believe it or not, I actually think we will come out the other side of this. Our Iconic Eddie Stobart like Brand is a different class ! We are so far in front of this cowboy, cheap skate mini cab mob, that I honestly think people are getting sick of them. It is now apparent that the "cheap" ride home, isn't that cheap after all !
People WANT quality, people WANT professionalism, people WANT safety and people will always WANT  experts, in anything, not just Taxis !

Even if things stay as they are, I think we can expect a major surge back towards our industry in the New Year. I believe in our brand and I believe in our offer.

Our danger though Folks are not Uber, they are just mini cab operators. Our danger comes from the hirearchy suits with their untrustworthy feet under the desks of power, of enforcement and licensing !

MP's, Ministers, Civil Servants and others who call for the abolition of the knowledge, our service and it's operating remit, need to be closely watched and scrutinized at all times. They're professional intent requires forensic study, because somewhere under the fascia, may very well be just what we are looking for !

NOBODY of professional repute, and a credibility worth talking about could seriously value Uber's service in front of our London Taxi trade offer. 


It just doesn't make sense ! So anyone of standing, especially from The House, needs to be scrutinized if they do. In my suspicious brain, the mere fact that a Member of Parliament would support and advocate a vastly inferior and less safe form of transport for his constituents........requires extremely close observation ! It just isn't feasible to say that something as effective and expert as The Topographical Knowledge Test is outdated, in favour of a sat nav whereby your attention has to revert from the road, is it ? These statements from academics and MP's stink like an old kipper to me !
 
Comparing Eddie Stobart's professional operation, although more expensive in the short term, to a 40 foot Articulated owner driver from the Czech Republic, running on red diesel, in an unsafe defective tractor unit with bald tyres and no Insurance..........is not the sort of thing I would be comfortable supporting if I were an MP from Dover.
 
UNLESS OF COURSE..............
 
Do I need to spell it out ?
 
Our World Winning Iconic Brand is something every single one of us with a badge around our neck, ought to be incredibly proud of.
We worked hard for the right to ply our expert knowledge and trade on the streets of London, and if I say it myself, we make a bloody good job of it !

Our Great Trade has had the guts ripped out of it by a bent, corrupt, incompetent and totally inept hierarchy.
For reasons that elude me, they have been more or less allowed to get away with it.
 
Not just our trade either. Look at the effing state of our Capital ! Just stand back and look at it ! Its an absolute bloody disgrace for a supposedly key player in the World's Top Elite Cities !
Boris Johnson is a buffoon. A slippery buffoon, but a buffoon nevertheless .


People are dying because of his dodgy emissions management, London is nigh on gridlocked 24/7 every day, the West End at night resembles something out of a Bollywood Film and the unrest, turmoil and distrust is overwhelmingly evident !
 
Look what they've done to our London ! Look what they've done to our Great Trade !
 
Folks, it time we put a stop to this, and took back what we worked our guts out to achieve, and what has been fraudulently snatched back by these OXBRIDGE BULLIES !
 
As I have said before and I will say again..............YOU CANT FIGHT CORRUPTION WITH DEMOCRACY !
 
Lets get the Christmas over with and see the New Year in Folks. Lets pull our crackers around the Christmas table with our loving supportive families. Lets toast in the New Year with a glass of champagne. Lets relax, maybe enjoy a quality Havana Cigar, a glass of Vintage Brandy and a nice hot bath. Lets spend a few well earned days surrounded by family, friends and loved ones.
 
AND IN EARLY 2016, LET'S STRAP THEM HELMETS ON, LACE THEM BOOTS UP, UNITE AS A TRADE IN TRUE SOLIDARITY.......AND TAKE BACK WHAT THEM GREASY PALMED SHYSTERS HAVE SYSTEMATICALLY STOLEN FROM US !
NO MORE WEARING GUM SHIELDS AND JOCK STRAPS, WE ARE NOT TAKING ANY MORE PUNISHMENT !
 
We will have one chance folks, one more roll of the dice. We've got nothing to lose now. Its SHOW TIME ! The Windows Have To Be Kicked In Now ! 
 
Enjoy the break my friends. We have much to do in the New Year. The clock is still ticking and I look forward to ensuring another 400 years for our Great London Taxi Trade ! 
We Aint Going Nowhere Bruv !
 
May I wish every single one of my London Taxi colleagues, all of the Trade Orgs and their Reps and Officers (yes, you as well Lewis !) the legendary Trade Stalwart and personal Hero of mine, Jim Thomas, our brilliant Poppy Cab Organiser, Mike Hughes, my fellow Trade Scribes on Taxi Leaks and other trade publications, and all my Brothers In Arms, whether they read my stuff in agreement or not........A Very Happy Christmas and Healthy New Year !
 
Be careful out there, God Bless (if you believe in him as I do) and in the warmest and most affectionate of London Taxi Traditions,
Be Lucky !
 
8829 Semtex.