Disruption Junction, What’s Your Function? Part 2

David Ryan

David Ryan is a boat builder and USCG licensed master captain. He is the owner of Sailing Montauk and skipper of Montauk''s charter sailing catamaran MON TIKI You can follow him on Twitter @CaptDavidRyan

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18 Responses

  1. James B Franks says:

    It’s says, Service: Passenger (Inspected), the same as the Mon Tiki. What is it missing?Report

    • David Ryan in reply to James B Franks says:

      What you’re seeing, James, are the respective vessels’ Certificate of Documentation; a sort of title of ownership provide by the USCG that also reflects what trade the vessel in question is legally permitted to engage in under the Jones Act.

      Scroll down to the Vessel Documentations and Certification. The Certificate of Inspect warrant that the vessel in question has been inspected by the USCG to be fit and properly equipped for passenger service with a designated number of passengers on designated routes.

      Here a link for a boat the Susie E I, run by a family who’s daughters dance with our daughters, which is properly certified:

      The last record is the Certificate of Inspection, May 9, 2012.

      Here’s another local boat, the Miss Montauk

      The COI is from June 10, 2010 and expires 2015

      When MON TIKI gets her COI it will be up there too.Report

  2. BradK says:

    I’m not familiar with Lyft or SideCar, but I’ve used Uber quite a bit and in different cities. The level of service and the convenience are unbeatable.

    Uber are the target of these types of attacks everywhere they operate and the the local Taxi cartels are usually at the root. They are scared of losing even a piece of their government protected monopolies and, given the usual conditions of Taxi vehicles and driver’s skills, don’t have a prayer of competing. And it’s not the poor, immigrant cab driver that they are seeking to protect it’s the monied interests that hold the medallions.

    Here’s another C&DO from two years ago by both the CPUC and the City of San Francisco. Uber got aroused this complaint by changing their name from UberCab to simply Uber.


    I hope that Burt can chime in on this discussion.Report

  3. David Ryan says:

    It would seem the most recent complaint is somewhat more serious than Uber calling itself a cab company when they’re not allowed to call themselves a cab company. The charge, with fines levied is that these companies are not following the safety and insurance requirements of their industry.

    In an upcoming post I’ll introduce you to the term “Demise Charter” and the PASSENGER VESSEL SAFETY ACT OF 1993, in the hopes of making a point about regulatory schemes as emergent with a cross thought to content rating schemes (like the MPAA) as emergent as well.Report

    • James Hanley in reply to David Ryan says:


      Is it possible that the “not following safety and insurance requirement” claims are smokescreens?Report

      • David Ryan in reply to James Hanley says:

        Well I suppose anything is possible. Click on the link, read teh press release, do your own research and decide for yourself.Report

        • James Hanley in reply to David Ryan says:

          I used to drive a cab in California. San Fran, to be precise. My company was duly licensed and never had a problem with the PUC. They gave me cabs with windshield wipers that didn’t work, brakes that barely slowed me down, and in one memorable case a car with suspension so bad that the front revolved in an ellipse and I couldn’t keep the thing between the lane lines at 40 mph. And then there was the guy who called in on the radio frantically announcing that his engine had burst into flames on the Bay Bridge.

          So even if these companies had some safety violations, I’d still be hard-pressed to believe that was the actual reason for going after them.Report

          • James Hanley in reply to James Hanley says:

            From the press release:
            “If something happens to a passenger while in transport with Lyft, SideCar, or Uber, it is the responsibility of the CPUC to have done everything in its power to ensure that the company was operating safely according to state law.

            But apparently it’s not their responsibility to have done everything in their power to ensure safe operations with the “Old Soldiers” Cab Company in San Francisco.

            (As to people overloading boats, hang ’em high.)Report

          • NewDealer in reply to James Hanley says:

            I will refrain from making any jokes about Taxi Driver with you from now on because it would just be cliche.Report

      • I didn’t know that CUP patrols workers’ compensation insurance, but I do know that the courts and the WCAB come down hard on any employer that doesn’t have it — and they take a very expansive definition of who is called an “employer.”Report

        • David Ryan in reply to Burt Likko says:

          In fact, just this week the Montauk Catamaran Company got our audit for our worker comp. We pay about 12 cents on the dollar of wages to insure our employees/our company against on the job mishap. As a start-up, the premium is calculated against anticipated annual payroll. I (slightly) overestimated and we’re due a (small) refund.Report

  4. Burt Likko says:

    A part of human nature recoils in anger at the injustice of seeing someone else get away with something that’s against the rules. The more rule-centric you are, the stronger this reaction is. And the more married you are to a prevailing paradigm, the less likely you’re likely to tolerate something that pushes the envelope against it.

    Hypo: You’re driving along a road near your home and in the car next to you, you see two teenagers smoking what looks and smells like weed. Even if a part of you thinks that marijuana should be legalized, you’re probably still a little bit angry. Those kids are breaking the law and getting away with it! Where’s a cop when you need one? Even a pro-legalizer can conjure up all sorts of reasons why this is bad — they’re intoxicated and shouldn’t be driving; this obviously isn’t medicinal use; and damn it, even if the law ought to be that this stuff is legal, the law isn’t yet that way and respect for the law itself demands obedience even to a silly law.

    All of which, I submit, is at least partially a rationalization for your jealousy that those kids are getting away with something while you’re not.

    And it’s also partially a rationalization for your seeing a norm of society violated. Even if it’s a norm you think ought to change, it’s still a norm you’ve bought into. You don’t spark up at a moment’s notice anymore. You follow the rules, and at least have the good graces to keep your smoking habit at home and out of the view of potentially disapproving strangers.

    Now, your policy preferences might swallow this outrage. You might say to yourself, “Self, it’s no more dangerous than if they were smoking tobacco. And it’s none of your business. And it ought not to be illegal anyway. So drive on.” I’m not speaking to that end result. I’m speaking to the momentary flash of outrage, the moment of internal disequilibrium in which you see something out of whack, and realize that it isn’t going to be corrected.

    In a lot of people, that little spark of outrage is surprisingly powerful and enduring.Report

    • NewDealer in reply to Burt Likko says:

      I think the only reason I would be angry at the kids is because they were smoking up and driving at the same time.

      However since moving to San Francisco a few years ago, I have seen people smoke up while hanging out on the street. This has never made me act in a way you describe. Am I just seeing it as a norm of San Francisco society and going with the flow?

      I don’t even like the smell of marijuana very much but I put up with it because otherwise I would never be able to attend a concert in San Francisco.

      Now it is interesting that you never see anyone smoke pot on the streets of New York. I did once and it might have been the fastest smoked joint in the history of mankind.Report

      • Burt Likko in reply to NewDealer says:

        Okay, so pick another example of a trivial violation of law or even of norms. There’s surely something out there that makes you irrationally angry.

        Jaywalking. Running stop signs (actually I don’t consider that one trivial at all, but some people do especially when it’s them that did it). Wet, sloppy, public displays of affection. People who don’t change their oil every 3,000 miles. Toll-jumping on the BART. Not cocking your wheels when you parallel park on a hill. Not leaving a tip at a restaraunt. Not returning the grocery cart to the stall after you’ve loaded the bags into your car.

        If you’re supposed to do something and you do it, and you see someone else not doing it and getting away with it, you’ll likely experience the flash of anger I’m writing about.Report

  5. DensityDuck says:

    But libertarians are still racists who fellate the rich.Report