The Elizabeth Warren Paradox: “Vote For Me, I Can’t Win!”

elizabeth warren, bernie sander

Contemporary politics is the art of cognitive dissonance, and elections are when this mind-numbing display of mind-numbness is in full effect. If you Google “cognitive dissonance,” a picture of Senator Elizabeth Warren set against the cover of 1984 appears. Warren’s campaign is built around a Catch-22. Or would it be Schrödinger’s Cat?

The cornerstone of any campaign is the viability of a candidate. The cornerstone of Warren’s campaign is that she’s The Chosen Woman to remove the “rigged system” that oppresses everyone who’s not a straight, white male. Warren has spent great amounts of time and money relaying her own personal sufferings of misogyny. To rally the grassroots to her cause, Warren has animated a bogeyman, and for the electorate to take her argument seriously, that bogeyman must be near-omnipotent instead of an easily immolated strawman.

Yet, if Warren is correct in her assessment about how powerful the rigged system is, then a vote for Warren is a wasted one. She’s asking to be placed in charge of a rigged system so she can unrig it, but how could she hope to be put in charge of a system designed to keep her out? What scope and strength of mental illness is required to believe “Vote For Me, I Can’t Win” is a winning slogan?

The modern Democratic Party’s presidential nominees have been, save for one, tall, handsome, eloquent and charismatic men. Hillary Clinton and Warren are comparable in age, appearance, and demeanor. The ideological difference between the two is Clinton is a moderate/centrist whereas Warren was a moderate/centrist until political expediency compelled her to embrace a wishy-washy version of Senator Bernie Sanders’ positions. Clinton has been a part of the system Warren decries for nigh on 30 years. Clinton was the First Lady, a two-term Senator, Secretary of State, and 2016 Democratic Party presidential nominee who commanded a ~$1billion campaign war chest. If the ultimate insider couldn’t break the glass ceiling, how could Warren?

Warren has traveled the country telling stories (“stories” being the operative word, since these biographic episodes are invariably disproven or revealed to be heavily embellished) about times she has gotten shafted. She told a doozy of a whopper when she accused Sanders of saying right to her 1/1024th Native American face that a woman could never be elected president. Five minutes later, a video was unearthed showing Sanders saying, some 30 years ago, that a woman could be elected president. The capper is that their mics were still hot after the January 14 debate in which this claim was further explored, and she was heard complaining to him that he called her a liar on national TV. If only Sanders had retorted, “Yeah, because you were lying about me!” instead of demurring that that was not the time and place to discuss her lying ways.

Why would Sanders tell Warren a woman couldn’t be elected president? It’s patently absurd. His 2016 primary opponent Hillary Clinton won the popular vote! I defy you, dear readers, to prove the Founding Father’s dreamed up the Electoral College to keep women from being elected president. Sanders lives in a fantasy land where food, shelter, and healthcare grow from trees. Sanders believes anything is possible, that quality of life does not have to be produced, that if we just steal the wallets of a hundred or so billionaires, everyone on earth would have everything provided for. To argue that Sanders doesn’t believe a woman can be elected, but does believe in the free-everything-for-everyone promise of socialism, would be like calling BS on one out of 100 of the impossible-in-real-life things that happen in sci-fi/fantasy movies. Sanders is way too sincere to have such a selective suspension of disbelief.

I’m not sure if the irony escapes her, but it shouldn’t escape those of us with more than a few brain cells to rub together that Warren is a piss-poor example of an oppressed woman. Is her being a Senator, Harvard professor, and one of the frontrunners for the Democratic nomination, able to raise ~$20 million per quarter, proof that she has been held back? She’s white and she and her husband have a combined net worth of ~12 million dollars. One might say this supposed rigged system has been pretty good to her. If I wanted a more authentic take on an unfair system, I would listen to the ramblings of a poor woman of color not empowered to confirm Supreme Court justice nominees.

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Dillon Eliassen is a former Managing Editor of Being Libertarian. Dillon works in the sales department of a privately owned small company. He holds a BA in Journalism & Creative Writing from Lyndon State College, and needs only to complete his thesis for his Master’s of English from Montclair State University (something which his accomplished and beautiful wife, Alice, is continually pestering him about). He is the author of The Apathetic, available at He is a self-described Thoreauvian Minarchist.


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