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Old 11-22-18, 06:59 PM
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Originally Posted by badger1 View Post
No, there is no 'conflict of interest'.

If GM promotes a 'multimodal transportation vision-thing' as part of its on-going efforts to sell the products it makes, that is not inherently or even potentially a 'conflict of interest' -- it is part of GM's on-going efforts to sell the products it makes. Provided its advertising is not wilfully false/misleading to the point of illegality, and its actions are lawful, there is nothing wrong with its attempts to do so.
Many companies are barred from getting into rival industries because of potential conflicts of interest like this one. You would have to do a market analysis and see if the overall competitive landscape would be threatened by them getting into these markets.

It is a difficult thing to assess because there are multiple levels of government in play. E.g. I've noticed that it is mostly local/municipal governments that are restricting the dockless scooters and bikes, so it is difficult to know what interests are behind those restrictions. It may be local car dealerships, insurance companies, auto mechanics, etc. who are afraid of losing business. Somehow these anti-competitive actions need to be stopped. People may need to take local municipal governments to court, etc. Stopping car companies from getting involved with LCF transportation may just be one prong of a broader strategy.

GM is not under a duty to subscribe to, let alone promote/serve goals that you deem appropriate. Look up even a basic definition of conflict of interest, never mind a legal one. The concept is tied to the notion of duty owed: a conflict of interest may exist where the self-interest of a corporation or person might work against a duty that corporation or person is under to make decisions for the benefit of someone other that itself. GM is under a duty to obey the laws and regulations of the state jurisdictions in which it operates. That is all; it is not under a duty to conform itself to your idea of what it should do or promote -- it is not under a duty to make corporate decisions for your benefit, or mine, or the Little Birdies and Trees and Streams and Bambi, except as required by law.
They are claiming to support a more multimodal vision of transportation, but if their true motive is to subvert it so they can sell more cars, then why should they be allowed to insert themselves into market positions that allow them to manipulate markets against the interests of people who truly want to invest in alternatives to driving?
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