How do you effectively carry out the “remediation of civilization?” was a serious question at yesterday’s Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC) in Shanghai. We’ve got a couple ideas, but what Han Zheng and his consorts were trying to say was actually “how do you curtail the illegal activity of black cabs?”, which has become a serious issue in the past few weeks.
There simply aren’t enough taxis to accommodate all the people who want to use them, which has brought rise to a slew of illegal taxis filling the holes that public transportation has left. Naturally, the police response to the rise of heiche‘s was to strictly crack down with dragnets, deploying undercover police to hire and bust black cabs. Needless to say, the dragnets led to a number of intense situations, most famously the driver who cut his own finger off to prove his innocence (and he was innocent!)
So what are some constructive ways of working around the issue? Let’s see what the crack-team of Shanghai Politicians had to offer for potential solutions:
License them!: Probably the best idea out of all of them. Jin Zhongxian, the director of the CPPCC’s Construction Committee (?), suggested that the reason black cabs have proliferated was that they fill that need for cheaper transportation for distances under three kilometers. Isn’t that why anyone would take a black cab to begin with? The system would allow drivers to register their vehicles as a temporary way to regulate the black cabs while municipal government works out a better, more legal way of dealing with the transportation defecit.
Start making licensed black cabs: We guess that this would solve the accountability problem, but how would creating rival illegal cabs make the situation any better?
Reduce taxi cab fairs: We like this one. Then again, the taxi cab companies probably don’t.
Conduct investigations within legitimate taxi companies, as well as within the police department: Yeah, of course. If a draconian crackdown doesn’t work to solve the problem, maybe it wasn’t draconian enough. Of course, neither the police or legitimate taxi companies have anything to do with black cabs. But hey, it’s a place to start, right?
Rent bikes!: Enviornmental, safe, a lot easier than haggling with a black cab. What an idea!