For Dems, No One ‘Plays By the Same Rules’

Arnold Ahlert is a former NY Post op-ed columnist currently contributing to JewishWorldReview.com, HumanEvents.com and CanadaFreePress.com. He may be reached at atahlert@comcast.net.


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When President Barack Obama released his $3.8 trillion budget on Monday he reiterated a familiar theme that has become the centerpiece of his re-election strategy. “We built this budget around the idea that our country has always done best when everyone gets a fair shot, everyone does their fair share and everyone plays by the same rules,” he said. With all due respect to the president, everyone “playing by the same rules” is completely at odds with the prevailing ethos of the Democratic Party.

To begin, perhaps the president could explain how “playing by the same rules” translates into granting waivers from the healthcare bill. More than 1200 entities were granted the privilege of playing by a completely different set of rules. Furthermore, the bill grants enormous power to HHS Secretary Kathleen Sibelius to continue making up policy as she goes along. As for the bill itself, it is a compendium of rule “variations,” highlighted by two Democratic senators, Mary Landrieu of Louisiana and Ben Nelson of Nebraska, being granted special favors in return for their votes.

While he’s at it perhaps the president could explain how Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano could defy Congress last August when she announced that she will stop deporting illegal aliens who meet the DREAM Act criteria, despite Congress’s refusal to pass that law. Failure to enforce illegal immigration statutes per se is the epitome of playing by two sets of rules, yet this president is willing to up the ante and grant special status to a subset of law-breakers he deems worthy. This might also explain why his Justice Department has sued several states, such as Arizona, Utah, Alabama and South Carolina, for attempting to enforce immigration statutes virtually identical to federal immigration law, even as states that completely defy immigration law with “sanctuary city” policies apparently remain free to do as they please.

In the arena of taxes, playing by the same rules reaches the level of farce. While Mr. Obama is busy haranguing the rich for not paying their fair share, reality is quite different. In 2009 (latest data available), the real “1 percent” of Americans paid 36.7 percent of all federal individual income taxes–but earned only 16.9 percent of adjusted gross income (AGI). In addition, the top 10 percent paid 70 percent of all income taxes, while 47 percent of Americans paid no income taxes at all. One can debate the merits, or lack thereof, of a progressive tax system. But the fact that there is a different set of rules for different Americans is beyond dispute.

Such rule-bending is verging on absurdity. Six House Democrats want to set up a “Reasonable Profits Board” that would impose a tax as high as 100 percent on the sale of oil and gas, on all “surplus” earnings exceeding “a reasonable profit.” Yet profits are not profit margins. From 2006-2010 the nation’s five largest oils companies’ profit margins averaged 6.65 percent. For perspective sake, profit margins for media companies from 2006-2009 were 23 percent. One is left to imagine if such media profits are considered “reasonable” by Democrats. Perhaps they might train their gaze on an Obama administration whose track record of rule-bending with respect to the subsidization of “green” energy companies is a sordid tale of favoritism coupled with dismal results: as of September 2011, 80 percent of the $20.5 billion in loans doled out by the Department of Energy went to the president’s top donors. Donors who apparently play by a different set of rules than most Americans.

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  • Rifleman

    If hussein really wanted everyone to play by the same rules he wouldn’t have granted all those obamacare waivers, ignored federal rulings against his administration, or rooked secured creditors to pay off the unions in his auto bailout. If the dp really thought everyone should play by the same rules, they wouldn’t want to change them every time power changes hands between them and the GOP.

    Writing campaign commercials for the GOP should be like shooting fish in a barrel.

    • fiddler

      Though Newt may not win, he definitely raised the issue of media BIAS. Whoever wins needs to be alert enough in questioning to detect Obamanista traps laid by the ostensibly "fair" media.

      Georgie Step-on-all-of-us and his ilk need to be called out for the partisans they are.

  • mrbean

    If either Romney or Santorum is elected President, they must make their first order of business to repeal Obama care 100%, no peacemeal compromise gestures to 'get along" . Whoever is the Republican president should clean house of all Obama appointees, especially everty lawyer inthe Justice Department. There is one exception, and rgar is keeping General Peatras as head of the CIA. It was when he took over from the Clintonist Panetta that we found Osama bin Laden and killed him. Of course, Obama took the credit.

  • StephenD

    Great work here Mr. Ahlert. Do as I say not as I do seems to be the modus operandi for this Administration. I still can't get over the President exposing his outright Hypocrisy when he chocked up lamenting the death of a 10 year old girl in the Arizona killing by a mad man while at the same time granting waivers to 4 countries to continue receiving our tax dollars in aid even if they use children as soldiers! The man is a hypocrite from the pits of hell. Pointing this out is all that should be necessary. There is no excuse for granting such waivers…EVER. I’d love to see a GOP candidate call him out on this one issue. Let’s hear the smooth talker ‘s excuses now.

  • Brujo Blanco

    I want a president that will stop paying our enemies. Perhaps Obama is in league with our enemies.

  • alexander

    Another RIP-OFF:
    GREAT AIRPORT THEFT: when you bring a piece of meat, even smoked sausage in a heat-sealed package or canned meat, airport workers take them away from you and "throw them away"…..The very same meats/sausages you may buy in any ethnic store in, e.g. N.Y. or Chicago.
    Somehow I think those airport workers have free meats/saugages, don't you???

  • fiddler

    Another example is Eric Holder not wanting to pursue prosecution for people standing outside of a polling place in PA (2008) in militia garb toting baseball bats and night sticks. One only wonders the front page coverage if "certain others" had done that.

    We have example after example; the latest being the absolute disparity in comparing Tea Partiers with Occupy Wall Street. Do we actually have to describe the excrement smell, the rapes, the overt civil disobedience to people compared to thoughtful people remembering to pick up the trash?

    Whoever wins the nomination should let the sparks fly as to the myriad miscues, not the least being the phoney "recovery" we are in. Break out the charts, enumerate the experts, and CHALLENGE the administrations assertions. While they are at it pursue overt media enablement and regurgitating WH dogma. After all they are responsible for truthfulness, regardless who they think is right. They have "consumers": US, and we have a say in the quality of the "product" we are receiving.

  • http://www.tartanmarine.blogspot.com Robert A. Hall

    I wish they would play be the rules I’ve played by. I pay off my credit cards every month. My only debt is $97k on a $160k 2/2 1300 SF condo we bought in 2009 (now worth under $130k thanks to the continued CRA-driven housing deflation). I worked all my life, always bought less house and car than we could have qualified for. I’m still working despite having pulmonary fibrosis, a terminal illness that kills more people than breast cancer, but gets far fewer research dollars under the “rules,” as it’s not a political disease. I make a comfortable middleclass salary, but well under Obama’s rich level of $250k. I went to college on the GI bill I earned as a Marine in Vietnam, worked all through school and came out debt-free, so I didn’t need to crap in public parks to protest.

  • http://www.tartanmarine.blogspot.com Robert A Hall

    Continued:

    And I pay a hell of a lot of taxes every year to support public unions, trail lawyers, people who bought larger houses though they earned less and others who play by the Democrats’ rules for buying votes with working folks’ tax dollars. I live in Cook County where you can read about Democrat-union corruption daily in the Tribune—at least the little they uncover. And I’m damned mad and bitter, so I’m clinging, I guess, to God and guns. I think the Democrats’ rules are driving us to fiscal collapse, followed by social and political collapse, and that Greek-style entitlement riots are the best we can expect. I think there will be violence, as the promises cannot be redeemed. I will link to this from my Old Jarhead blog.

    Robert A. Hall
    Author: The Coming Collapse of the American Republic
    All royalties go to help wounded veterans
    For a free PDF of my book, write tartanmarine(at)gmail.com

  • George Peyton

    "Even more ironically, for Democrats, anything less than an equal outcome is de facto evidence that someone is playing by a different set of rules, and must be brought to heel by any means necessary–even if it means bending the rules in the process."

    Not true, Democrats are very much in favor of unequal outcomes, as long as they are the ones that come out on top.

    Partial libertarian = wholly tyrannical

  • Brittanicus

    Frosty Wooldridge said in his latest article:

    Every indicator that our country is failing shows up daily with 15 million unemployed, 7 million underemployed, 46 million Americans subsisting on food stamps, $700 billion annual trade deficit, $15 trillion national debt, endless wars that cost $15 billion monthly and thousands of kids dropping out of high school daily. I have said it before: illiteracy defines a third world country. With 42 million functionally illiterate Americans, we are well on our way. Nonetheless, Congress pumps over 125,000 immigrants into this country every 30 days. I am beyond exasperated as to why and how we can do this to our country.

    Learn more at NumbersUSA, how the government is defying the U. S. Constitution and the laws that govern us. Investigate even more the terrible penalty our nation pays, for unending spending on foreign nationals by Googling—“AMERICAN PATROL.” Seek out your politician either by phone at 202-224-3121, or go their office in person. Proclaim to them they are–OUT–if they vote for any kind of AMNESTY, disguised as Comprehensive Immigration Reform. Remember–this is not about any racial make-up, nationality or color, its strictly about illegal immigration, that America cannot afford any more. Even if your from Europe, the Pacific rim, Africa, Canada or any South American country; if you illegal, they should be detained and deported.

    When the States of Arizona, Alabama, Georgia, Utah, Indiana and South Carolina is being financially crippled by the illegal alien invaders, it is undeniable that something smells of government corruption. These states have spoken out on behalf of their taxpayers, especially the border state of Arizona. Using fake ID, of exceptionally good quality unlawful nationals are able to qualify for food stamps, WICC and other public assistance programs. It is way past time that many incompetent administrations stopped this fraud? The only possible way is to issue every eligible US citizen and others able to qualify a National ID card, which can be substantiated?

    Our Social Security numbers and other documentation has been compromised, as seen in the overwhelming amount of victims that is unceasing spreading across our nation.

    Important: Voter fraud does exist and our only chance of fair and impartial elections, from now until the November Presidential is every citizen show official Identification. Non citizens have been registered to vote and will again in all electoral cycles, which could cause major issues in a close vote. Fake ID has been around for years, but is more prevalent now than ever before?