Number 1 Hero of the Year Award 2011: Elizabeth Warren

31 Dec

Number 1 Hero of 2011

What a pleasure to present 2011’s Number 1 Hero of the Year. One of the rare people who has won multiple Hero of the Week Awards, Elizabeth Warren has been a model of the principles of TSM. Stymied by obstructionist Republicans (who clearly feared she would actually do her job) when she was nominated by President Obama as head of the new Consumer Protection Bureau, she has breezed past this setback. As an outspoken advocate for the 99%, she consistently demonstrates her understanding of good governance and meaningful social policy.

In September, she spoke out eloquently about the social contract:

I hear all this, you know, “Well, this is class warfare, this is whatever.”—No! There is nobody in this country who got rich on his own. Nobody…Now look, you built a factory and it turned into something terrific, or a great idea—God bless. Keep a big hunk of it. But part of the underlying social contract is you take a hunk of that and pay forward for the next kid who comes along.

More recently, she demonstrated her clear understanding of the intersections of oppression, specifically as they relate to marriage equality:

 No one – no one – should be discriminated against because of race, color, national origin, sex, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, or religion…As other states grapple with whether to support marriage equality, I’m ready to move to the next step: End the two-tiered system created by the Defense of Marriage Act.

A rare public figure of principles who is determined and articulate, Elizabeth Warren sets a standard that every liberal in America should strive toward. It will be a delight to see her crush Scott Brown (a BWA winner!) in the Massachusetts Senate race next year. Who knows where she may go from there?  My sincere hope is that the United States will be fortunate enough to see Warren as POTUS.

Flashback to 2010: Our Hero of the Year was another strong woman, Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand.

4 Responses to “Number 1 Hero of the Year Award 2011: Elizabeth Warren”

  1. Jay December 31, 2011 at 12:02 pm #

    An excellent choice, not only for the content of Ms. Warren’s political and economic views, not only for her determination and character, but for her tone, which strikes me as near pitch-perfect.

    Her evocation of the social contract shows her political and historical savvy, and places her in a tradition that goes back to the Enlightenment–the era of the founders of our democratic republic. Americans are much more sympathetic to Hamiltonian notions regarding a robust central government which promotes internal improvements and equality of opportunity than they are to Marxist notions of a war between the classes.

    Wealth is not the enemy. As Ms. Warren notes, if a person has been successful–god bless. Enjoy. The problem is those who resent taxation as an unfair imposition, or even a theft, which justifies in their mind any and all efforts to minimize the amount they return to society at large–up to and including the corruption of the political process itself.

    Nobody succeeds in a vacuum. Programs and policies that are consciously designed to (partially) redistribute society’s wealth are not socialism, they are the social contract in action. Reducing inequality is an investment in present-day justice and in future stability, both of which are in the self-interest of the everyone–and arguably more applicable to the wealthy than to any other segment of our society.

    • Michael Hulshof-Schmidt December 31, 2011 at 12:09 pm #

      Beautifully said, Jay! I only wish I possessed her grace, equanimity, and survival skills.

  2. Michael Hulshof-Schmidt January 4, 2012 at 8:50 am #

    I’m honored that you read my blog everyday and for the nomination. I am a huge fan of your blog as well.


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    […] feminist pro-gay type, I read it every day. I especially liked his Bigot of the Year and Hero of the Year […]

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