This is the last week of the A to Z blogging challenge. The last six days are the hardest as the letters at the end of the alphabet have the fewest words to play with. Throughout the month of April, I have been using the challenge to modernise the seven deadly sins with my suggested twenty six versions. Humans, it would seem, have an insatiable ability to sin.
U is for Uber. I have talked about Uber before in a blog. It was at the end of last year and I am not suggesting that what the innovative company is doing is in anyway a sin.
Uber has completely disrupted the taxi market on a global scale by making it easier (and therefore cheaper) to find a lift when you need one. The fact that the business has been built on the back of some less than desired working conditions has, in the main gone unnoticed. People like convenience and are happy for others to be ‘Ubered’ even if they would not be happy for the same to be done to themselves.
The sin lies with us as users of such services. We happily drive cost down through diverting our spending power to ever cheaper and cheaper products and services without a thought to how they are made or the poor unfortunate souls that lie behind them. All of us are aware that products are made in sweatshop conditions, with long hours, low pay and non-existent worker’s rights. Few of us are aware how many of these products filter into our shopping baskets on a weekly basis and even fewer give it a thought.
For us to be rich in the West means that others need to be poor. Trade has released billions of people from poverty yet exploitation is still rampant around the globe and not just in those third world countries and banana republics that might spring to mind.
Our modern economies are dependent upon the import of low cost goods to feed our addictions but we need to be more cognisant of the effect that our demands have upon the world’s poor.
Thou shalt not extort.