In the Daily Mail today, the following piece appeared. “Giant corporations like Google appear to be operating ‘above the law’, a former policy guru warned yesterday. He said he understood public anger about the power of huge multinationals – and urged ministers to rein them in.
He said: ‘There is a growing sense that companies that are so big and so dominant … really are above the law. In this particular case they have made clear they were abiding by the law – then, when the arrangements caused anger, and now that they have new arrangements.’
He added: ‘Those of us who really believe in the power of business and capitalism to do good things … have really got to make clear to businesses that they have a responsibility to behave in a way that earns public trust.’
Fine words and we would all applaud them! Unfortunately the PR Guru is Steven Hilton, married to Rachel Whetstone, who runs PR for Uber in the UK. The Mail says: “Mr. Hilton, whose wife Rachel Whetstone is a former Tory adviser and Google executive, warned failure to tackle crony capitalism would drive voters to the Left.”
How can Steve Hilton have the bare faced gall, when his wife’s company is exploiting desperate drivers, tricking them into signing up to huge loans, then paying them below £5 a hour, to talk about businesses having a responsibility? The Uber fare is cheap sure. It’s based on criminality, so it would be.
Meanwhile, Uber is flooding London with 1,000 Uber cabs a month with the express aim of pushing black cabs, who have just won the prize for the best cab service in the world for the sixth time, off the road!
How can Uber do this? They are in collusion with George Osborne, who is letting them off all checks and safety regs. Yes, we have a great example of crony capitalism right here! Assaults by Uber drivers are on the rise in the UK, rapes are rife in India, and the US, but the safety of passengers is something Uber has never lost any sleep over.
Businesses have a responsibility. Did Steve Hilton really speak those words? And Steve is complaining about crony capitalism? Unless he wants to look like the biggest fake in the world, maybe he should suggest to Rachel Whetstone she starts looking for other employment.