Uber is exposing a problem with how city agencies work. Dwight Waldo published a book called "The Administrative State" in 1948 that describes how this happens at the Federal level. But at the local level the legislature (town/city council) delegates making laws to the Taxi and Limousine commissions in these municipalities. These commissions, quite naturally, will tend make rules that keep out the competition. By creating rules that say things like Uber cannot stop for hails, they ensure medallion prices stay high. These rules are really laws that should be debated and enacted by the legislature with public input, not the taxi commission. The taxi commission has a conflict of interest.