On its face, Uber is an end-run around laws restricting taxi companies (it may not have started that way, but it definitely is now). Uber's whole scheme is analogous to patenting something that's already been done before by adding the phrase "on the internet". They're using weasel words to do things they're not supposed to be able to do by law.
Whether you think the law is fair or not is a different issue.
Because I feel that the laws there are too restrictive, I'd normally not really care. But then they get petulant. Did you know that Austin doesn't have Uber service? Austin wants all ridesharing services to fingerprint their drivers (which I believe the taxi companies are already required to do). The voters voted, and the law passed. Uber's response?
They took their ball and went home.
I use Uber fairly regularly. I love the service. I think it was needed, and for that reason I give them a pass on the medallion laws or whatever; the taxi companies needed a kick in the ass, and many of those laws probably exist due to corruption. But I [i]do not[/i] think it's unreasonable to comply with requests from municipalities that go to the safety of passengers -- or, for that matter, mandates to treat their employees fairly.
And when they're so petulant that they'll pull out of a municipality instead of complying with the laws there, well... That just makes it clear that those whiners think they're special snowflakes, and have no qualms about punishing their customers in an attempt to obtain the special treatment they think they deserve.