This guy thinks the taxi medallion industry is “too big to fail”!

Over at the NYT:

“I have delivered, personally, in excess of $300 million to the city in these auctions,” he said. “Do I not have a little bit of standing to say there should be support from that institution that I delivered, personally, $300 million to? To do what the government does for every other industry? Am I not being logical?”

Yeah nah. Uber is awesome and we recently spent a week in Christchurch. Taxi service there is abysmal! It is interesting to note how the introduction of Uber into a taxi market like has happened in Wellington forces the useless ones to sharpen their act.

The value of a rent like a taxi medallion going down – primarily because of pressure from better alternatives like Uber and Lyft – is an inherently good thing. I don’t see what the big deal is about people in sunset industries having to eat some capital losses when they were earning a premium – a rent – sometimes for decades.

If they didn’t have the foresight to maintain a diversified portfolio of commercial assets outside their pool of taxi medallions, tough cookies. Tell someone who cares.

With respect to TARP and the Wall St bailouts, they clearly weren’t necessary. Because AIG was a regulated insurance company the top of the pyramid (where AIG Financial Products resided) could have gone into Chapter 11 without affecting the policies of millions of policy holders because US state insurance regulators and overseas insurance regulators wouldn’t have let them send assets upstream. (David Stockman explains this in his GFC book). So it’s a sucky argument for a sucky industry rent seeker to make.


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