I am cross posting this from my personal blog because it’s both relevant and important. An added note is that Iceland is finding a very comforting middle ground (http://www.cntraveler.com/stories/2016-05-31/why-iceland-plans-to-restrict-airbnb-rentals). Most disruption is completely fabricated myth, but the disruptive problems that arise from commercial applications of residentially zoned buildings far outweigh the selfish needs that defend the practice. It’s not hard to figure out… 


Convenience erodes our ethical compass…. Uber & AirBnB are capitalist endgame of pure selfishness.

Most of you know I have problems with Uber. Of course, idealism is out the window when there’s savings or convenience (even if you risk some insurance company not paying a claim)… just like privacy is all the rage to argue about, until it comes to personal conveniences. We’ll trade away rights, ownership, ability to sue, and even every iota of personal data and info just to be able to get directions to a restaurant or connect with friends. You know privacy is a red herring, and coded language as diversion from the real issues at hand. Civil liberties should be enough in our society, but so many self interested parties (secrecy, tracking, data economy) encourage privacy talk to waste our time. Privacy is over. It ended due to convenience, and we happily gave it away. But what else can we give away? A new study suggests we can give away our ideals and ethics just to get home a few minute quicker for a few dollars less.

I’ve been thinking about it more and more, and where I 100% used to use VRBO for AWESOME trips, I have sort of soured on it, namely because of the flap in our city and Sausalito…  and how it was changing the downtown, the neighbors and neighborhood.  I will say the people who are trying to run illegal rentals in my town seem to be entitled, creepy weirdos.

 

Any of you have opinions pro or against these services?  I just want them regulated, personally. This free for all where tech is able to throw money at governments to buy time seems a waste of it…  we need to figure this stuff out rather than hope it fixes itself. None of the apps, rental economy people have their customers best interests at heart.

 

So, I’ve been ambivalent about my selfish and entitled desire of convenience, but wrestled with it a lot. I don’t know if you guys do….

 

Here’s some interesting stuff….. a study about “if you like Uber, you are selfish enough to say “screw those employees don’t regulate those apps”. Basically, you will talk yourself out of recognizing how bad the companies are if you like the convenience.  Selfish convenience instead of ethics. That can’t be good. Is it “turning you into a monster”. I would say, if you try to explain away the problems immediately…. check yourself, and think about it.

 

 

Then this little story… more local, just airbnb…… but they way they lobby over the heads of constituents is sorta scummy. politics, I know.

 

 

It is just weird… I can feel my brain *convincing* me that airbnb or homeaway are delightful to get to know the real character or nature of a neighborhood in a foreign city, with some savings and ability to cook (so a bit more savings)….

 

But I remember in France, the way neighbors looked at us going up and down the creeky staircase at all hours. And in Iceland, we rented a summer home at the end of winter in a place where ZERO humans existed, and that was sorta creepy and dangerous, to some extent.

 

I definitely know what airbnb do to the local hood (not great), and how a significant portion of Tiburon’s housing inventory was constantly empty (going on market since the rental ban, actually, which is thrilling to see), save for being sold out city wide on a big weekend, potentially hurting local biz and restaurants that need constant traffic…. not business on already peak weekends that can’t be supported.

 

So I wonder if any of you struggle with this stuff, or think about it at this level? Or is it just “that’s so cheap!” “this is great for me”, without thinking about the other people it impacts and affects?

 

It just seems simple…. if it’s zone residential, making a mini-hotel seems not only not right, but it seems selfish, entitled, and just wrong. It seems so simple to me. I was wondering how so many people could explain away simple facts like that…. and then the Pew survey came along, and it makes perfect sense.

 

If you like and use Uber and AirBnB, you will delude and lie to yourself about what sort of companies they are, because you are an entitled consumer that values personal conveniences over being an ethical, compassionate person.

 

Just as simple as it seems to evaluate commercial vs residentially zoned areas, the pew survey simply calls out our entitled elitism that is core to our evolutionary existence.

 

It will be interesting if enough people consider themselves humanists to rise above their own mental subterfuge. It’s plenty hard for me.

 

Anyone else care at all?

About Michael

No Comments

Be the first to start a conversation

Leave a Reply

  • (will not be published)