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Comment Re:And it's not even in the top 10 worst. (Score 1) 182

In January 2013 I visited Beijing, Xi'an, and Guangzhou. Beijing was almost unbearable, with the US embassy reporting "PM 2.5" levels over 750. I went to one of those bars that are famed for their views - couldn't see a damned thing. I live in Melbourne Australia where levels are usually well under 10 and I was shocked by my experience. I felt sorry for the local population, thinking most locals would lose a decade of life.

I'm glad that the Chinese government has been taking this seriously since then. Xi'an was also terrible but not as bad as Beijing when I visited, but I was only there for a short time and it seemed as if the local pollution depended on how still the winter air was. Guangzhou was much better.

And yes, many Chinese do smoke, often removing their face masks to do so. Go figure.

Comment Re:Uber didn't exist in 2009 (Score 1) 204

AC said "Also you then need to figure out what makes them not drunk-drive. If its the easy booking by phone, well taxis can be ordered by phone so the reduction in recent years might be attributed to the easy book-by-smartphone app"

The article specifically refers to new year's eve. Taxi wait times on NYE are hours. I didn't read the article (as if!) but I expect it referred to Uber increasing supply on NYE. Statically licensed taxis cannot respond to huge peaks the way that Uber can.

Comment Re:Uber = Public subsidized (Score 1) 204

Here in Melbourne Australia, I was shocked to discover that taxis aren't properly insured.

Perhaps things have changed since that article was written, but I drive past the 'taxi club' frequently, so I suspect not. If not, why would we want to prevent Uber form operating here. Unless I hear valid reasons I support Uber operating, and I'll be interested in the possible motivation of politicians against it.

What is now proved was once only imagin'd. -- William Blake