PENGIN9: I don’t get why we need to have laws for who can drive a taxi. In my humble opinion, if you’re brave enough to have a stranger pick you up; it’s all on you. [A] registered taxi will be more expensive, but presumably safer.
BIG WANG: Because having unsafe taxi drivers and cars on the road is a danger to the greater public, not just the rider? Because having unlicensed and unregulated taxis prey on tourists and foreigners gives off a bad image for the country and the city? Because having too many taxis around tourist and rider hotspots increase overall congestion? Because allowing a company to reap the revenue for a taxi business without complying with regulations sets a bad precedence? People who are dead set against taxi regulations have been living in (highly regulated) first-world for too long.
— from the comment thread on the Ars Technica story Lyft reverses under legal pressure, cancels Friday night New York launch.