Taxi Wars and Bad Documentaries: Readers Riff
It's getting crazy out there! As Joseph A. Lapin reported last week, ride-sharing apps such as Lyft and Uber are increasingly claiming a piece of the driver-for-hire action in L.A., and cabbies aren't happy about it. In one case, Lapin writes, taxis bumped into a Lyft car — leading to its driver pulling out a knife ("Battle for L.A. Grid," Aug. 30).
Bywayofpdx writes, "Haha, beware the formation of the Cabbie Mafia, coming to an airport near you. News flash, cabbies: Everyone hates you. Everyone hates your high rates, your terrible driving, your surly attitudes and your monopoly on business. The free market is a bitch when your service is crap."
Laughtiger writes, "What so many people are perhaps willingly blind to is that Lyft, etc., are really just taxis — not an 'alternative' to taxis. And what is causing this aggravation among drivers? Oversupply, owing to the effective deregulation of the market brought by Lyft and friends. So one group of drivers boxes the other guy in, he pulls out a knife and threatens them off. This is something to celebrate? I think not. This is the future of the cab industry as Lyft, Uber and eventually a host of others will flood the market, make drivers increasingly desperate (and potentially violent) and drag the whole industry into a race to the bottom."
Church.william.thoma writes, "Is this what America has come to? Two taxi drivers assaulting a Lyft driver, and then that driver pulling a knife, which is equally wrong, and threatening the other driver? Really? Is this what we want our city, our state and our nation to be like?"
Hating on Morgan Spurlock
In last week's print edition, the Weekly's new film critic, Amy Nicholson, dissed Morgan Spurlock's new film, One Direction: This Is Us, in a capsule review. Nicholson subsequently elucidated her feelings at greater length in an online-only essay ("Morgan Spurlock Destroys Documentaries with His One Direction Commercial," Aug. 30).
Writes Michelle Klein-Hass, "He directed the One Direction 'doc?' Jeez, how far the mighty have fallen."
Serena Donovan was never a fan. "Super Size Me was gimmicky and pandering to the disgust most people already feel about fast food. There was nothing remotely groundbreaking about it, and people only watched it for the sheer shock value of watching someone do something incredibly stupid. Even worse was his follow-up, the belittling documentary where he and his wife self-imposed minimum-wage jobs and lifestyles on themselves (God forbid) and filmed it like they were space aliens venturing into some new land. That was the straw that broke the camel's back for me — it showed Morgan Spurlock is living in some sort of liberal la-la-land."
Walter W. Crim III offers an eye roll. "What were you expecting? Investigative journalism? It's freakin' One Direction!!!" Walter, you have us there.
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