The president says these things in the context of raising taxes on the wealthy—and not all the wealthy, just wealthy investors whose income primarily comes from capital gains, which are taxed at a lower rate than other forms of income. How much more dishonest can one man be! It’s not just class warfare, but even within the upper class he is dividing people up! You cannot say that “everyone should play by the same rules,” and then advocate a punishing, re distributive progressive income tax in which people are divided up by classes, with different rules for each class.
But, as I’ve written before, the Democrats take their complaints with God to the altar of government. To say that it is not “fair” that someone live in poverty while others are wealthy, or, to use a more melodramatic example from Nancy Pelosi, that “women die on the floor,” is a complaint to God; it is to ask for a theodicy. Why is there evil in the world? Surely the government didn’t invent it; surely the government didn’t create poverty (though with policies like President Obama’s, it spreads it copiously); surely the government didn’t create death. Yet liberals immediately claim that it is the government’s job to right every wrong in the world, to either fix God’s mistakes or, in the case of sexual sins, to apologize for humanity’s.
Take it up with God, I say. He’s fairer and wiser than the government will ever be.
If the president really cared about government fairness rather than the mysterious decisions of Providence, if he actually cared about equal protection under the law rather than under God, he would support a flat tax, like Steve Forbes and Governor Rick Perry. This is not a difficult concept to understand: everyone should play by the same rules and pay the same rate.
Ah, but here comes the objection to the Heavens: but it’s not fair that certain people have and make more money than others! Well, they pay from a higher principle, for one thing, and for another, how exactly does one decide what is a “fair” rate? Why does the Buffett Rule push for 30%? Where did they get this number? Are only Harvard Law graduates qualified to make this judgment, or is the Oracle from Omaha a real oracle?
The brilliant libertarian Peter Thiel visited an Occupy Wall Street encampment, and asked a woman how much of his income it would be fair for him to pay in taxes each year. She was baffled by this questions, and simply spouted Democrat talking points. “I think the Bush tax cuts should be allowed to expire. I am against the Bush tax cuts.” But she had no alternative proposal, no ideal toward which she and other progressives were progressing. All she had was envy.
And that's all president Obama has to offer us.