Eleven Commandments and the Color 9

ElizabethWarrenby Deana Chadwell    7/28/14
A few days ago a meme that made me chuckle scrolled down my Facebook screen. The text read, “Trying to understand the behavior of some people is like trying smell the color 9.” No kidding. Like an illusive optical illusion I just think I have a handle on an answer and suddenly the picture shifts with holographic precision and I find myself looking at a vase instead of a pair of silhouettes.

Trying to talk to some people and get a solid grasp of their thinking is even harder; so much shape-shifting is going on in the public arena that I often catch myself mid-stagger as if I’d just stepped off a roller coaster. Such was my reaction after reading National Journal’s article (July 18, 2014) entitled “Elizabeth Warren’s 11 Commandments of Progressivism.” Maybe this would tie it all up for me.

I wasn’t really that naïve, but I was that curious – curious about what Progressives are selling this season, curious about whether or not they can even conceive of “commandments” and curious as to whether or not Warren can make it all sensible.

In the first place the headline was deceptive as I suspected; her “commandments” weren’t really commandments, because none of them forbade progressives from doing anything, rather they demanded the cooperation of everyone else. After all, the progressive dream cannot be realized unless absolutely everyone toes the line, willingly or otherwise. Shangri-La cannot be perfect if anyone is allowed to leave.

Each of her statements started with the phrase “we believe” as if it were a statement of faith like you’d find on a church web site, and ended with either some activity she wants other people to stop doing, or with demands for benefits she thinks people either “deserve” or are “entitled to,” terms she used almost as often as the word “equal.”

In reality she only had a few planks in her wobbly platform:

  1. She wants regulatory control over Wall Street, Christian companies, and the Internet. After all, none of these need progressivism to succeed; they do fine on their own, and these are the entities that are hardest to control and are also the ones who most need controlling in order for her schemes to unfold. And she thinks the Earth is under some kind of attack and needs to be rescued, presumably from Wall Street, those pesky Christian corporations and most likely, the oil industry, though she was careful not to say that. She does unequivocally declare her belief in science, though I assume that is limited to the science that supports her fearful predictions.

2. She thinks that everyone is entitled to:

    • a living wage, evidently without regard to skill levels, education, and work ethic (unions)
    • a protected pension (unions), evidently this applies whether or not the company in question is still functioning
    • a free post-secondary education, which will be important if we are to keep the populace properly indoctrinated; we can’t have young people go out into the workforce too early – they might get a taste of reality
    • free abortion and birth control, and — drum roll here…
    • pure equality in everything

3. She “believes” that everyone deserves to be allowed

    • to marry whomever, no holds barred
    • and to come to this country illegally.

OK – obviously there’s some editorializing here, but read her “commandments” for yourself.  Like smelling the color 9, huh?

She didn’t say why people deserve or are entitled to anything she demands. I always thought that deserving meant deserving – that you’d done something worthy of recompense. “Entitled” used to be connected to the concept of nobility – you or your ancestors received a title that was earned, usually on the battlefield, and that title – count or duke or baron – brought with it certain privileges. These men and their families were “entitled.”  But in her world the words seem only to mean that your body temperature is more or less normal.

So, because we breathe we should have “a living wage,” whatever that means, and a college education, and free sex, and a guaranteed pension. She didn’t, however, seem to have any “beliefs” about how those things should be paid for.

Oddly enough she didn’t rail against the rich and demand the wealthy cough up their fair share. Maybe now that most of the rich swirl around in government circles, progressives have had to pull in their teeth a little. Perhaps she didn’t want to stumble into a discussion of who’s rich and who’s poor after Hillary swallowed her whole foot on that issue and Warren (poor little Cherokee that she claims to be) is rolling in it.

She also seems to have no beliefs about health care – other than women’s birth control issues. In the light of the crumbling of Obamacare, that must be an over-heated potato. I can’t believe that she doesn’t believe that we all deserve and are entitled to free appendectomies and facelifts.

What I’m really confused about is why so few demands? I mean, why not go for broke and demand free cars and I-pads and housing? Don’t we all deserve a 20-room mansion with tennis courts and swimming pools? Aren’t we all entitled to European vacations?

Her speech was chillingly vague about our country’s borders and thoroughly ominous in regard to religious freedom – freedom of any kind actually.

She also said nothing of foreign policy. Has she no beliefs about how we should relate to the other nations of the world? No possible policy about the Middle East, or about Ukraine? Does she think we are already so insignificant that we don’t need one?

Perhaps my confusion is all just a lack of imagination on my part. It’s apparent that both domestic and foreign policies are all just whatever we’d like them to be. Who says there can’t be a color 9 and that it can’t smell like lilacs? If we want to live in a pain-free, consequence-free world, can’t we just pretend and it will come true? Why can’t we all just get along? That’ll do it.

And yet, her speech won her wild applause and approval.

So now I’m left wondering what the key of purple tastes like.


Deana Chadwell blogs at ASingleWindow.com.
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Deana Chadwell

About Deana Chadwell

I have spent my life teaching young people how to read and write and appreciate the wonder of words. I have worked with high school students and currently teach writing at Pacific Bible College in southern Oregon. I have spent more than forty years studying the Bible, theology, and apologetics and that finds its way into my writing whether I'm blogging about my experiences or my opinions. I have two and a half moldering novels, stacks of essays, hundreds of poems, some which have won state and national prizes. All that writing -- and more keeps popping up -- needs a home with a big plate glass window; it needs air; it needs a conversation. I am also an artist who works with cloth, yarn, beads, gourds, polymer clay, paint, and photography. And I make soap.
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4 Responses to Eleven Commandments and the Color 9

  1. Timothy Lane says:

    Warren says “we believe” because leftism is her religion, of course, as it is for all (or at least most) liberals/progressives/leftists. (It’s ironic that “liberals” are in fact very illiberal and “progressives” are actually very regressive, of course.) She already proved in her 2012 campaign (both in her justification for her claim of Indian descent and her version of “you didn’t build that”) that she was incapable of logical reasoning, which is why I refer to her as Blonde Squaw With Empty Head.

    The basic problem with her extreme welfare state is that it never occurs to her where (given that no one has much of an incentive to work) all those freebies come from. As for the rest, like most leftists she has no regard for the United States as it was, and thus is quite happy to see it destroyed in the foolish belief that they can recreate it into something better.

    • Rosalys says:

      I’m beginning to wonder… Are these people really that stupid or do they just think that we are that stupid? I suppose there are some idealists who lived sheltered lives or just hadn’t lived very long who can really buy into this crap; but honestly, this stuff isn’t experimental anymore. These are ideas which have been tried and failed, and failed again. The Earth is awash in the blood of the slaughtered citizens of Utopia. Squaw Warren may just be that dopey; but I don’t think that’s true of your average, high born Progressive. I don’t believe they spend too much time worrying where the money will come from because they don’t care. The impossibility of paying for the welfare state isn’t anything that can’t be solved by allowing an appropriate number of people to die once their productivity diminishes. Not one of these psychopaths is going to shed a tear or have a troubled conscience over the plight of the unwashed masses. They are just that evil.

      • Timothy Lane says:

        This is why I divide liberalism between the Inner Party and the Outer Party, with Orwell as the model they follow. The Inner Party is motivated by the desire for power, with little or no real concern for people (though they always claim to act in the name of The People). The Outer Party genuinely believes in the Cause, and is too ovine to apply any skepticism to the Inner Party’s claims. So in essence the Inner Party members are liars, and the Outer Party members are their willing dupes.

        In terms of Sumner’s Forgotten Man, the Outer Party liberals are the A who sees a problem they want solved and the Inner Party are the B whom they discuss the problem with. Sumner didn’t say whether B actually cares about the problem that worries A, and in the case of leftists I doubt they do.

  2. Rosalys says:

    “…rather they demanded the cooperation of everyone else. After all, the progressive dream cannot be realized unless absolutely everyone toes the line…”

    Squaw Warren’s 11 Demandments! You are so right; the Left is all about telling everybody else what to do, where to go, and how to get there. And when it fails to bring about Utopia it isn’t because of any inherent flaw, but because it wasn’t done right – so they are doomed to an eternity of tweaking.

    Smelling the color 9. Wow! The odd thing is that statement makes perfect sense in this context, because it is a perfect description of progressive thought!

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