Are we tired of the cheaters yet? Are we exhausted from the Russian skater scandal, where a 15-year-old girl has taken not one, but three banned substances, and somehow is allowed to compete? Is it a shock that the same girl mentally falls apart as she skates and tumbles from her difficult jumps? Or is it more shocking that the actual Gold Medal winner is treated like some wallflower at a high school dance, with no one to congratulate her or console her on this tainted victory.

Are we tired of the cheaters yet in horse racing? It was bad enough in the 2019 Kentucky Derby that Maximum Security was disqualified on a borderline ruling by the stewards. It was later discovered that Maximum Security’s trainer, Jason Servais was involved in a large doping scandal and expelled from racing. But worse yet, the winner of the 2021 Kentucky Derby, Medina Spirit, was found to have a forbidden substance in his body. This has brought on a legal fight after the trainer, Bob Baffert, was banned from Kentucky and New York racing venues. Sadly, Medina Spirit died on December 6, 2021, after a five-furlong workout from a heart attack. At least the Russian 15-year-old skater is still alive… for now.

Are we tired of the cheaters yet when it comes to tax fraud? Tax avoidance is one thing, as the rules are written by the lobbyists for the wealthy to avoid paying taxes. It is a disgusting and disgraceful system when the middle class is subsidizing the wealthy, as the wealthy avoid paying their fair share or commits tax fraud. Is it a fair and just system that allows the Amazons of the world to pay very little in federal taxes? The fix is in, to an extent that people like the former president is able to claim a $73 million dollar tax refund based on phony valuations and the status of his properties. The fix is in because there aren’t enough Internal Revenue Service agents to deal with the mountains of paperwork involved in complex tax situations. The Republicans in Congress are obviously not interested in remedying that issue.

Are we tired of the cheaters in the transportation business? Uber famously instituted “dynamic pricing,” which we know as “surge pricing.” The original purported justification for this rip-off was to entice more drivers off their couches when there was an imbalance in demand and supply. Fast forward a couple years to the reality that the passengers were paying the “surge” rate, but the drivers were being paid the regular rate. Guess who was taking the difference.

Now, the Taxi & Limousine Commission (TLC) has approved a rate increase for app drivers, for which they’ve secured much media coverage. Did they ever address the aforementioned rip-off? What about the judges in the cases brought against the city by the various interested parties, including the lenders? How is it possible that these judges would agree with the city’s position that Uber et al operate by prior arrangement when you couldn’t even order a car in advance? That was their justification that the taxi industry and the app companies were not similarly situated. Such nonsense.

Are we tired of the cheaters in the medallion taxi business? The New York City TLC was found to have posted bogus valuations on their website in 2013 and 2014. The purpose of this intentional fraud was multifaceted. One was to entice unsuspecting auction purchasers to overbid for the medallions offered for sale by the city. A second purpose was to entice financial institutions to lend to borrowers at higher levels than would be allowed by their regulatory limitations. Thirdly, because the TLC would not permit medallion transfers below their fraudulent numbers, unless a waiver from the NYC Dept of Finance was secured, the city was able to collect higher transfer tax revenue.

Are we tired of the cheaters in the media? There are some people who believe that certain media companies exist just to carry the water for the corporate interests that own or control them. The cable news companies are accused of this disingenuous journalistic practice. We just want the news. We just want it straight. We’re big boys and girls. We can handle the truth.

For decades, The New York Times seemed to have a vendetta against the NYC taxi industry. In addition, they seemed to have a love affair with everything Michael Bloomberg did or said, with very little in the way of criticism. Is it possible that Brian Rosenthal’s point of view on his often-quoted series of articles was heavily influenced by the NYT and Michael Bloomberg’s relationship? Otherwise, how can we explain that Rosenthal blamed former TLC head Matthew Daus for some of the ills of the industry, but not TLC Chair Meera Joshi. Daus hadn’t been in charge since 2010, while Joshi and David Yassky presided over the decimation of the industry. Now Joshi has been rewarded with the job of Deputy Mayor. It’s disgusting.

We, as a country, need accountability. The ability of the cheaters to game the system has to be reckoned with. Cheaters need to be caught and a price paid. There cannot be one set of rules for some and a different set for others. As the saying goes, “It’s socialism for the rich, and capitalism for everyone else.” It’s one thing for resources to flow up to the rich as a policy decision, but quite another for the rich to be stealing from us.