This July marks the 100-year anniversary of the American Jitney. An early incarnation of Uber and Lyft, it was an enormously popular service that was at one point found in 175 U.S. cities. Haven’t heard of it? That’s because most major cities quickly regulated it out of existence.
My colleague, Michael Farren, and I explore the short life and death of the American jitney in tomorrow’s LA Times.
Watch this video:
Now consider the following:
- WestJet is a Canadian airline.
- This would seem to be yet one more example of a foreign airline providing superior service relative to U.S. domestic airlines.
- According to the U.S. Department of Transportation, U.S. law has long-banned foreign air carriers from serving solely domestic routes, thus:
Air France could not carry a Los Angeles-originating passenger on a one-way flight from LA to New York. However, it could carry the passenger from LA to New York if the passenger had a through Air France ticket to Paris and, following a stopover in New York, boarded another Air France flight to Paris.
Ergo, an outdated protectionist measure may be keeping you from the best flight ever.
Tim Cavanaugh at Reason writes of the unfortunate similarities between California and New Jersey in how they managed their pension systems. Both systematically underfunded the plans and promised benefit enhancements during the late 1990s. But I learned something else from Tim’s post. Hoboken, as a musical muse, doesn’t quite work in LA.