A week or so ago, my friend Lisa De Pasquale over at Breitbart, penned an article about how this election cycle is shaping up to be Gen-X versus Baby Boomers. In it, she pointed out that while Hillary Clinton might not be too old to be President (I mean, seriously, the GOP once ran John McCain who knows so much about foreign policy because he was around with Pangea broke apart), she certainly acts old – way older than should be socially acceptable or electorally palatable.
Today, Hillary spent half her speech railing on the Wall Street banks that make up a significant part of her donor base, and the other half complaining about these young whippersnappers and their newfangled smartphones with the texting and the Facebooking and the Ubering. I mean, who do they think they are, circumventing an antiquated and burdensome, union-driven transportation boondoggle with ingenuity and common sense and a cooperative network that allows individuals to purchase products on a free market that they themselves police?
The nerve of some people’s children.
In a major campaign speech in New York City, the former secretary of state didn’t mention the ride-sharing service by name. But it was pretty clear what sort of companies she was talking about when she got to how some Americans earn money.
“Many Americans are making extra money renting out a spare room, designing websites, selling products they design themselves at home, or even driving their own car,” she said at the New School.
But that sort of work comes with its own problems, she said.
“This ‘on demand’ or so-called ‘gig economy’ is creating exciting opportunities and unleashing innovation, but it’s also raising hard questions about workplace protections and what a good job will look like in the future,” Clinton added.
Mashable made a valiant attempt to come to her aid, explaining to their youthful audience that what Clinton really meant when she said Uber was “displacing…blue collar jobs” wasn’t that you should stop using Uber, but that you should want protections for Uber workers, many of whom are classified as independent contractors (even though she says that she wants to be a “small-business candidate” and there’s nothing smaller than a sole proprietorship). But that would work if she were only targeting those service-oriented programs which require a service provider. AirBnB, the other operation she mentioned, facilitates couch-surfing, not driver services, and are certainly not cruising toward a class-action lawsuit from their disgruntled apartment-renters.
So what is it then? Is it Hillary Clinton’s deep-seeded, bottom-of-her-heart compassion for the little guy? Is it her ardent belief that government can truly provide an effective service economy of its own, thus preserving her control-oriented governmental theories?
No. Hillary Clinton wants union money.
Ultimately, Uber, AirBbB and other cooperative social sharing networks and app-based service providers have sprung up in response to a corrupt establishment – a tangled web of cronyism that involves government regulators who want to tax, control and organize networks, and massive unions who seek to keep a stranglehold on jobs and industries. Uber openly subverts a scheme between local governments and labor unions to limit choice in transportation to that which is both approved by government and operated by unions. The result is inflated pricing, artificial scarcity and a market that doesn’t operate with consumers in mind. Instead of changing their system to respond to consumer needs, transportation unions would rather just shut down the subversive businesses entirely.
And that’s where Hillary Clinton comes in. As that super-helpful chart demonstrates, progressive socialist Bernie Sanders has a deadlock on union money. And while they give less, the have, ultimately, more to give overall, and plan to be aggressive in 2016. And of course they’d support Bernie: he’s as progressive as they come. The only standout is Richard Trumka, who has been trying to wave other unions off of supporting Sanders because he understands that Sanders could never win in a general election, putting unions at a bargaining disadvantage. With only AFL-CIO on her supporter list, Clinton has to move in on the other union donors.
And what better way to do that than attack the free market scourges that threaten to make unions obsolete? In the name of social justice, of course.
The saddest part is that this is unlikely to help Clinton get union money, unless she suddenly starts believing what she’s speaking about. Even sadder is that, no matter how many tech blogs come to her defense, helping to convince their readership that Hillary Clinton is, indeed, hip and “with it” despite all evidence to the contrary, we live in a headline culture. If Hillary Clinton doesn’t get the shareable economy, Hillary Clinton is behind the times.
At least the times, however, seem to be trying to catch up with her. Just as Hillary was bemoaning that whippersnapper Uber’s apocalyptic mobile ride-sharing service, Uber was announcing a very special program for the elderly. Maybe she should look into it.