Relative importance of getting a ride from Uber versus helping the Afghan refugees

A follow-up to We care more about Afghan migrants than about homegrown indigent?

To celebrate the company’s plan to provide 86 cents per Afghan refugee (see below), the Uber app now has a “Help Afghan Families” button that is approximately 8X the size of the “Request a ride” button:

From this can we infer that it is approximately 8X more important to help the Afghan refugees (with 86 cents each!) than to get a ride? Why is it only 8X? If Uber is truly passionate about the refugees, shouldn’t the “help” button be at least half of the screen? (Or maybe all of the screen and then users would scroll down to get a ride?)

What if a person doesn’t need a ride from Uber? How can Uber remind them regarding what it implies is its core mission? My inbox today, under a subject line of “Help Aghan refugees today”:

It looks as though Uber is going to give $2 million in cash to non-profit organizations in the Refugee-Industrial Complex. How much would you give if you wanted to be equally virtuous? Uber has a market cap of $76 billion. So you’d multiply your net worth by 0.00002631578 in order to be just as generous as Uber. For example, a millionaire would donate $26.

What if we were to divide the $2 million in cash by the number of refugees who’ve already left Afghanistan? The BBC story below says that there should be roughly 2.32 million Afghans who either were already refugees or who were newly airlifted out. Uber is thus alerting us to a program in which 86 cents per refugee has been committed.

(Separately, since corporations could distribute profits to shareholders and let the shareholders donate to charity, corporate charitable donations are typically considered a form of management stealing from shareholders. The Uber executives who donate $millions that would have belonged to shareholders, for example, will get the benefits of being charitable donors: invitations to elaborate dinners, connections to other rich people (or other managerial thieves!), etc. CEO Dara Khosrowshahi got paid $42 million in 2019 while his buddies near the top got an additional $82 million. Together they could certainly give 86 cents to each Afghan refugee, but why not keep the money to spend on luxury consumption if instead the shareholders’ money can be donated?)


  • “Afghanistan: How many refugees are there and where will they go?” (BBC): The United Nations has warned that up to half a million Afghans could flee the country by the end of the year and has called on neighbouring countries to keep their borders open. The current crisis comes on top of the 2.2 million Afghan refugees already in neighbouring countries and 3.5 million people forced to flee their homes within Afghanistan’s borders. More than 123,000 civilians were evacuated by US forces and its coalition partners after the Taliban took control of the capital on 14 August …As many as 300,000 Afghans have been affiliated with US operations in the country since 2001, according to the International Rescue Committee …

6 thoughts on “Relative importance of getting a ride from Uber versus helping the Afghan refugees

  1. We live in amazing times. It’s so easy to hide liberal hypocrisy by seemingly large numbers. Best thing they would have done for Afghanistan is by not electing mindless dude to be a president of United States and keep old course that allowed population of Afghanistan to double in 20 years ( compare with Soviet occupation decline!)

  2. Cultural enrichment is on the way
    “… they are motivated by a deep and abiding contempt for Western civilization. To them, Europeans are the enemy, and their women are legitimate spoils, as are all the other things one can take from them: housing, money, passports. Their laws don’t matter, their culture is uninteresting and, ultimately, their civilization is going to fall anyway to the horde of which one is the spearhead. No need to assimilate, or work hard, or try to build a decent life here for yourself—these Europeans are too soft to seriously punish you for a transgression, and their days are numbered.”

  3. Unskilled immigrants are Uber’s bread and butter. Of course they are going to do all they can to get them settled here.

    • Driver is an elite occupation in that area of the world, as opposed to subservient peasant. It even may beat sheepherding in prestige, not exactly sure.

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