Image 01 Image 03

Was it a lie if Elizabeth Warren believed it?

Was it a lie if Elizabeth Warren believed it?

Blogger Bernie Quigly at The Hill, in what now is a classic, raises a novel defense, Elizabeth Warren’s true American lineage:

Elizabeth Warren might be excused for wanting to be Native American. She can claim an old American soul, going back generations in Oklahoma. In  the heartland it is almost universal for those who have been there for a few generations to claim Indian blood; that is, to wish it were there  even if it isn’t. It is not so much a lie as it is the acculturation of  personal and regional American myth; the fabric of old-soul American  consciousness. “Our spirit will walk among you,” said Chief Joseph.  Indeed it does….

So Warren’s claim to be “part Indian” is correct in mythical terms. Every old-school white Oklahoman is in this regard even if this in nominally not true. But it is not a lie to want to be Indian and to imagine your ancestors were. It is to be free of Europeanism.

As much laughter as the blog post has garnered, isn’t it really the heart of Warren’s defense?  She didn’t lie, she believed what people (allegedly) had told her about her heritage.

Did she ever check? Did she have doubts? Why would she form her ethnic persona based on family lore, when she had provable non-Indian ancestry?

To whom did she represent that she was Native American, and what did she tell them about it, as she was building her career.  (wink, wink)

Does the truth even matter, or is it simply what Elizabeth Warren believed to be true?



Donations tax deductible
to the full extent allowed by law.


I can kind of believe that.
I mean my mom told me I was handsome and special and super smart all my life and anyone that has ever met me knows thats true.
yeah…thats my story and I am sticking to it.

Oh sure, she can be excused for wanting to be but she can’t be excused for pretending to be on official forms and documentation. I can want to be a police officer but I can’t pretend to be one in public.

I love watching the cards fall around the Democrat party – what fun it is 🙂

radiofreeca | May 23, 2012 at 9:16 am

I think it’s a wonderful precedent that Warren (and all of her supporters, plus the administration) are setting – whatever we can convince ourselves to be true (or can’t prove to be untrue, or simply haven’t bothered researching), we can claim to be true, and it’s not lying if we state it to be true on official documents.

I can mark down that I’m Native American (and be proud of it!) because my grandmother always felt she was. That makes me 1/4 imaginary Native American, which is a lot more than Warren’s imaginary 1/32.

    AmandaFitz in reply to radiofreeca. | May 23, 2012 at 10:54 am

    I am exactly the same age as Elizabeth Warren. My mother was from Oklahoma City. I know that no one in Oklahoma City would have “claimed” Native American status during the 50’s, 60’s and 70’s unless they would benefit from such a claim- headrights, in particular. There WAS discrimination against those of Native American descent in Oklahoma and Mrs. Warren and her family lived as Caucasian and interacted with their community as Caucasians.

    This is typical of the fraud that permeates the Democrat Party and academia. Elizabeth Warren FABRICATED a genealogical identity and traded upon it for decades.

    I guess in Democrat eyes, she’s a “composite” Cherokee.

Well, this could get all metaphysical and gooey, to say nothing about post-modern!

But, for a lot of us who insist on paying the property taxes to live in Realityville, there IS truth in an objective sense, and it DOES matter…VERY MUCH.\

Quigly’s “mythical truth” is what a lot of call “a lie”. That is a communication to others as a factual statement, either knowing, or not caring if, it is untrue. Often, as in Warren’s case, these are told for very selfish reasons.

“But it is not a lie to want to be Indian and to imagine your ancestors were.”

But it IS A LIE to tell people that is the case without any basis in truth (i.e., reality).

Just like it is a LIE to tell people you were born in Kenya, or you had a job, etc.

    Everybody else pays those taxes to live in RealityVille, but not the select chosen few, like Elizabeth Warren.

    “Yes, it’s Superman, strange visitor from another planet who came to Earth with powers and abilities far beyond those of mortal men and womyn. Superman, who can change the course of mighty rivers, bend steel in his her bare hands; and who, disguised as Clark Kent Elizabeth Warren, mild-mannered reporter for a great metropolitan newspaper professor for a great metropolitan Law School, fights a never ending battle for truth, justice, and the American way as described by the DNC platform.”

radiofreeca | May 23, 2012 at 9:17 am

What’s really wonderful about all this – this fails my “Tom Clancy” test: if this was in a Tom Clancy novel, everybody would say “Oh, C’mon – this is fiction, but it’s got to be a *little* bit believable”. I have to thank Warren for the entertainment.

My question is, and I apologize in advance for not knowing the in’s and out’s of affirmative action racial quotas, even if she believed it to be true, hell even if it was actually true, does 1/32 lineage qualify one to be a ‘Native American’?

My family is descended from John of Gaunt, first Duke of Lancaster and younger brother of Edward the Black Prince. But I still don’t get to hang with William and Kate when I travel to England because even though the family connection is well documented by actual genealogists, it doesn’t quite make me royal…

    janitor in reply to abenson229. | May 23, 2012 at 9:43 am

    Haha! How dare you try to turn the discussion to the important issue when it’s so much more fun to be mystical. 🙂

    mflash in reply to abenson229. | May 23, 2012 at 9:52 am

    And keep in mind that even the theoretical, now-debunked claim to 1/32 was simply the best her campaign could come up with after the political blow-up occurred. She never actually had heard of “Sarah OC Smith” growing up; rather Smith, whoever she actually was five generations back, was believed to be the “nearest Indian at hand” to justify her lie once Warren’s back was against the wall — and of course even this newly-discovered distant relative turned out to be a bust anyway.

pilgrim1949 | May 23, 2012 at 9:27 am

“Good intentions roadway paving stones”

Midnight. You have a sore throat. Not wanting to wake up your spouse you don’t bother to turn on the lights, but open the medicine cabinet and grab what you know (yea, even BELIEVE!!!) to be the cough syrup bottle and gulp down a few swigs.

At sunrise the paramedics take your lifeless corpse from your house to the morgue where an autopsy later confirms that you ingested a cup of iodine, NOT cough syrup.

But since you sincerely BELIEVED it was really cough syrup, no harm, no foul, riiiiiight????? No biggie.

Yuze gotta problem widdat?

NC Mountain Girl | May 23, 2012 at 9:33 am

The self described reality based community seems to have a serious problem distinguishing wishes from facts. I first noticed it in the arts where a complete lack of talent was no bar to being accepted as an artist if one loudly proclaimed they were an artist. A few years later I saw it infect the world of journalism when the New Yorker swallowed con man Brett Kimberlin’s story about having been Dan Quayle’s drug dealer hook line and sinker. Now it has metastasized to Harvard Law School.

    Milwaukee in reply to NC Mountain Girl. | May 23, 2012 at 10:07 am

    Marcel Duchamp answered the question of “art” in 1917.

    Even Picasso: “If you bend a paperclip, you have a bent paperclip. If I bend paperclip, I have art.”

    Which is why I generally prefer art from the century before the previous century.

Yep, Elizabeth Warren’s ancestry was originally gleaned from Last Of The Moronhicans…

Authentic Moron.

I grew up believing I was Irish. My father had a favorite saying: “there are two types of people in the world, the Irish and those who wish they were”. He told the story of his mother being “right off the boat from Ireland”. As I got older I was constantly arguing with people who told me my last name was Scottish and not Irish. Yeah, I know. I have a Scottish name but my paternal grandmother was right off the boat from Ireland. Stupid people.

Then one day when I was in my late 20’s and my father was long dead, I was having lunch with my mother’s mother when the subject came up. She laughed and said “your father was of Scottish descent. You’re not Irish”. Oh, jeez, do I have to go thru this AGAIN? I said “yes, I know that but my other Nana was right off the boat from Ireland”. This Nana just laughed. “No she wasn’t, she was born in Providence.” She knew the address and everything.

So I sat there for a few minutes until it finally dawned on me. And then I had to laugh. My father was in the “wish they were” camp.

The difference me and Elizabeth Warren is that I never claimed to be Irish after I found out I wasn’t. But I still make a toast to my father every March 17th. For old times sake.

    Ragspierre in reply to Jaynie59. | May 23, 2012 at 11:06 am

    You could easily be from folks “just off the boat from Ireland” and have a Scots surname.

    Remember the Scottish diaspora, which was the cause of “The Troubles”. It was a design by the English to subdue the Irish by infusing Ireland with good Protestant Scots. One of history’s “really bad, horrible, amazingly terrible” ideas.

    Plus, you go back in history a ways and you find that the Scots and Irish had a lot of interaction…good and bad.

    Also, Scots are famous (infamous…?) as prolific breeders…world-wide.

      Milhouse in reply to Ragspierre. | May 24, 2012 at 5:52 am

      Since the Scots came from Ireland in the first place (In Roman times Scotland was Caledonia, and the Scoti were a tribe in Hibernia), Cromwell’s Scottish settlers were simply returning home.

If Elizabeth Warren wanted to be an old soul and get in touch with her mythic or mystic side, then she could have sent in French recipes for, say, a Druid or Viking cookbook.

(Harvard et al. and the MSM aren’t interested in the Celtic background, though, unless of course one is a POTUS who hails from Kenya and is being photographed in an Irish pub.)

That satisfies me completely, and I’m sure she’ll win. In mythical terms.

Her only excuse would be if she did not know any other part of her heritage. Otherwise 1/32nd doesn’t make you a minority.

No. The truth matters.

I WAS born in Oklahoma (I’m adopted). I have an adopted sister who was also born in Oklahoma who has very distinct (and provable) Native American ancestry (she went and looked up her mother). I have NEVER thought “oh, well I was born in Oklahoma so I MUST have Indian heritage.

Elizabeth Warren KNOWS (or should have known) that it does not require an intentional misrepresentation to be a misrepresentation of the facts. Her LEGAL training should have taught her that, or she should give back her degree and be laughed out of the legal circles. Further she should have made a “reasonable” inquiry into her claim before she made it. That’s the task of lawyers before they make a claim on behalf of their client, it should apply to them as well. She didn’t. Otherwise she would have known better.

If this ends up being her defense, Harvard should publicly and loudly FIRE her, and if she still has a license to practice law in Massachusetts, she should be DISBARRED for being likely to mislead and thus damage the public.

The is a simple outcome of this fiasco.
Merely, consider what would happen to the average undergrad at Harvard if a simular situation had occurred.
You know, they get tossed out on their ear and have to repay any grants or scholarships they received.
I wonder if Elizabeth Warren is prepared to payback how many years of Harvard pay ?

Being in Louisiana, I tell my children to put down that they are Cajun, Jewish, and native American. I figure that will open most doors. I myself am anglo-saxon, protestant, but anything helps now days.

    scfanjl in reply to david7134. | May 23, 2012 at 10:46 am

    My adopted daughter is black. Can I claim to be a black mother?

      pilgrim1949 in reply to scfanjl. | May 23, 2012 at 11:10 am

      You’re onto something there!

      My daughter-in-law comes from a black-skinned Cuban refugee family so that should count for something, yes?

      Woo hoo!!

I am from an ancient people heretofore unknown. They would have remained so had it not been for their discovery, . . . by me! That’s right! I am the discoverer of the undiscovered. As I write this, my secretary is scheduling an appointment with the White House. After all, I am now an exceptional minority among minorities and should receive all that is my due. I guess I’ll be making the rounds of all the talk shows, etc. For now, back to my latest project, “Who was really the first man to the moon?” I believe it was me. Yes, I do. I believe it was me.

Are our standards of ethics and education really so low that we should tolerate an assertion on behalf of Elizabeth Warren that she believed she was an Indian and was entitled to a remedy for past wrongs?

It’s sad and pathetic to see a writer throw away his ethics to defend an immoral act.

But if they do accept that action, then we can, in turn, make use of it.

In the future, when confronted with federal forms signifying race, we should check ALL the boxes. I am as much an Indian as Elizabeth Warren, and I have the brown eyes to “prove” it. Actually, my real justification is that there is only one race, and all the rest of those classifications are ethnic BS. Aside from that, I am dead certain that, if I include cousins-by-marriage, I’m related to everybody, if you go out 6 levels. This is the United States, and we have family everywhere.

    MaggotAtBroadAndWall in reply to Valerie. | May 23, 2012 at 10:32 am

    Kevin Bacon is everybody’s 6th cousin.

    Valerie in reply to Valerie. | May 23, 2012 at 10:41 am

    Chuck Skinner, above, has a point.

    When I sign my name in the course of my professional duties, that signature alone constitutes an assertion that I have inquired into the underlying facts and have stated them truly, to the best of my ability. There is a Federal statute, a fine, and consequences to my clients if I make a careless, unsupported statement.

    How is it that Elizabeth Warren, professor of law at Harvard Law School, shouldn’t be held to the same standard as some lawyer in private practice from that “no-name law school”?

      persecutor in reply to Valerie. | May 23, 2012 at 12:29 pm

      On information and belief, I affirm that you are correct!

      Milhouse in reply to Valerie. | May 24, 2012 at 6:00 am

      Wait a minute. The AALS membership form is not made under oath. There is no duty to make sure what one writes is true, any more than what one writes on a blog or in a Who’s Who entry. It’s bad form to knowingly lie, but if there’s a family legend why would one think to question it? Winston Churchill believed his great-great-grandmother was Iroquois, and he told people this, even though we know it wasn’t true. That didn’t make him a liar, let alone expose him to legal sanctions.

Being a descendant of our Reptilian Extraterrestrial Overlords, I have trouble finding the appropriate boxes to check off on these standard forms.

Actually, I thought his essay was tongue-in-cheek, not serious. If he were serious, then he has a serious issue with understanding truth and reality. Well, for that matter, so does Ms. Fauxhantos Warren

I believe I’m a billionaire!

anyone interested in a damn fine bridge in here? Barely used for 50 years, by a little old lady, goin’ to church on Sunday’s

MaggotAtBroadAndWall | May 23, 2012 at 10:28 am

Elizabeth Warrn Is “The Jerk”

This controversy brings to mind contemporary thinking about bullshit:

In his essay On Bullshit (originally written in 1986, and published as a monograph in 2005), philosopher Harry Frankfurt of Princeton University characterizes bullshit as a form of falsehood distinct from lying. The liar, Frankfurt holds, knows and cares about the truth, but deliberately sets out to mislead instead of telling the truth. The “bullshitter”, on the other hand, does not care about the truth and is only seeking to impress.

However, Warren, Quigley, and like-minded progressives have gone beyond Frankfurt’s essay into the realm of “believing your own bullshit”.

Would a Harvard trained lawyer acting as opposing counsel in an civil suit, accept as fact without supporting documentation, the unproven details on her resume and work record that she either authored or allowed to be attached to her resume? Just curious.

    persecutor in reply to Padzu. | May 23, 2012 at 12:33 pm

    Well, the administration of that “big name law school” sure did!

    Observer in reply to Padzu. | May 23, 2012 at 4:11 pm

    Lizzie Warren is not a Harvard-trained lawyer (unless you consider her teaching at the school to be a form of training for her).

    Warren’s law degree is from Rutgers. She is a Rutgers-trained lawyer. That is why she had to lie about being a member of an oppressed minority. Harvard is a top-tier law school, and the top schools don’t hire professors from low-ranked schools like Rutgers — not unless there is something very special about the professors (like the fact that they’re Native American and can enhance the school’s “diversity” credentials).

      janitor in reply to Observer. | May 23, 2012 at 6:08 pm

      Yes. Even middle tier law schools tend only to hire graduates of top tier schools. It’s extremely unlikely she would have been hired by Harvard except as a Native American.

I almost feel sorry for the woman. For years I believed my paternal grandfather – who died before I was born – was Welsh and had emmigrated with a brother or two from Wales. I recently joined a geneology forum and it turns out that was all false – and since both my parents are dead I don’t have any family to even ask where that idea came from. Even though I never used it for advancement I guess if something had come up about it I firmly would have claimed that ancestry.

A lie requires intent. Merely because person makes a statement that turns out to be false does not make them a liar. In matters of heritage, its entirely possible that Warren was told of Indian ancestory. Parents tell their kids all kinds of stuff that may or may not be true. Ever hear of Santa Clause or the Easter Bunny?

That said, statements that other people will reasonably rely on require a bit more diligence. The burden falls on the person making the claim. In this case, was it reasonable for Warren to claim Indian ancestory based on what she knew? Knowing that such a claim would help get her hired and promoted, she was responsible for it. Vague stories and family lore are not reasonable, without more. Thus, she retains culpability, unless and until she provides a creditable explanation on why she believe in her Indian ancestory.

These standards escape most liberals. Just ask them about the 16 words in President Bush’s State of Union address for a point of comparison.

    janitor in reply to Think38. | May 23, 2012 at 1:51 pm

    Let’s suppose she really believed it, and really thought that notwithstanding no real-life connection by her or any living relative to anything Native American, she felt entitled to claim herself as a minority to obtain Affirmative Action preferences.

    At this point, she needs to say she was wrong — on both counts.

My father’s family lore says that his paternal grandmother was Indian (Choctaw, I think) – and to look at my grandfather, it was fully believable (the man had a full head of coal black hair when he passed away). My dad, who just turned 80, STILL has black hair. Our oldest daughter is always being asked if she is part Oriental, because of the shape of her eyes (apparently another “Indian” trait).

However, there are NO records of this ancestor being Indian – because back then, there was a stigma attached to it, and nobody admitted it if they could “pass” as white.

If you can’t “prove” that you are part “whatever”, then you aren’t allowed to use it to your “advantage”.

Family lore is fine – as long as it remains just that. Am I part Indian? Heck if I know – enough of my Dad’s relatives have said it to make me believe that I am, but it doesn’t really matter at this point.

The problem with Ms. Warren is that she DID use unproven family lore to secure a “minority” status – THAT is the real issue here.

    Ragspierre in reply to teresainfortworth. | May 23, 2012 at 11:13 am

    A lot of us think of Vikings as being a bunch of blonds.

    But you’ll find coal black hair and blue eyes very prominently among the descendents of pure (as pure as it gets) Viking stock in the Channel Islands, Iceland, and Scandinavia.

    AmandaFitz in reply to teresainfortworth. | May 23, 2012 at 2:57 pm

    I used to do private college counseling and if one of my clients alleged Native American status for college admission, I told them they HAD TO have tribal membership or start the process to seek tribal membership. At the time, a few tribes would sell tribal memberships, but they quickly stopped the practice after it was exposed.

    I have known three kids who had legitimate claims AND valid tribal membership- all three are blondes and blue-eyed, but are all 1/8th Native American. Two have headrights to oil producing land. False claims of Native American status are serious in these days of profits from casinos and oil royalties, not to mention the fraud of receiving affirmative action preferences in hiring or admission to college.

None of this is relevant. What is relevant is that she chose to leverage affirmative action privileges that she did not need, earn or deserve.

Cassandra Lite | May 23, 2012 at 11:16 am

In an episode of Curb Your Enthusiasm, Larry David comes to believe that he was adopted at birth and is actually Gentile, not Jewish–so he takes up auto mechanics, horseback riding, etc. Warren did what? Field dress buffalo? Hey, maybe Idaho-born Palin is 1/32 Nez Perce.

Midwest Rhino | May 23, 2012 at 11:28 am

So when and why did Elizabeth decide to STOP telling the lie misconception? And why did she never make corrections, for being listed the first woman of color in whatever position? How could she not correct those statements, even if she imagined she really was 1/32nd Cherokee? She was basking in the glow.

Warren stopped using “Cherokee” long ago, yet for the campaign tried to maintain it was true when confronted. It seems she knew the skeletons in her closet did NOT have high cheekbones. 🙂

poor Lizzie Warren
So proud to lie

And some day when they’ve learned
Lizzie’s Cherokee lies will return
Will return will return
Will return will return

and now this Paul Revere and the Raiders song goes out to Elizabeth Warren ..
from the real Cherokee people her ancestor rounded up
come clean Lizzie … come clean

Juba Doobai! | May 23, 2012 at 11:35 am

This is truly excellent. It comes under this heading: BAFFLE THEM WITH BULLSH**.

Typical of the unrepentent narcissism in libtard logic: Both reality and truth are in the mind of the beholder.

    Exactly, liberalism is about selling the agenda to people who normally would reject the agenda. Selling means saying anything to convince a person. Truth and facts are only relevant where it supports the narrative to sell the agenda. Warren was merely supporting the agenda, group rights derived from the victimization and minority status of American Indians by claiming to be one. If Kennedy can say, “Ich bin ein Berliner” when he clearly was not and was celebrated for it then what is our malfunction for dissing Warren?

    In the liberal universe, the creation of utopia is the ultimate good, therefore truth and facts contrary to the agenda are evil. Anyone who opposes agenda is evil, including God. Now you know…

ShakesheadOften | May 23, 2012 at 11:50 am

Along the lines of what Paul said above, I agree that this simply isn’t relevant. It comes back to she was touted as a minority when she clearly was not. She experienced no negative effects from her “assumed” heritage and should not be “entitled” to redress. Clearly she is not the intended beneficiary of affirmative action (in theory), but it’s fascinating (and disturbing) that this is where affirmative action policies lead.

But I still call BS.

LukeHandCool | May 23, 2012 at 12:32 pm

I’ve seen the future, and 150 years from now a woman will have to walk back claims based on family lore that her great-great-great-Grandmother had become a U.S. Senator of Massachusettes.

I can get how she’d WANT to have Cherokee heritage, and how easy it would be to just go with the family story…but, it took me all of a half an hour to find my family in the Dawes Rolls. Surely a Harvard professor is capable of at least the same level of research.

So, I’m not buying the wishful thinking/mythology theory. She was looking for an edge in the hugely competitive tenure race, and she found one that was too good to risk by verifying.

She’s just another morally bankrupt opportunist.

It’s a scientific fact that all of us on earth are derived from someone who lived 100,000’s of years ago in Africa. Does that mean that we should ALL list African-Americans on forms when asked for our lineage?

Alan Kellogg | May 23, 2012 at 5:47 pm

I have no trouble believing Elizabeth Warren is a Native American, she’s just not an American Indian.

TeaPartyPatriot4ever | May 23, 2012 at 10:24 pm

3 points of contention-

1- The recorded facts, or lack thereof, do not support and or substantiate her claims.

2- Elizabeth Warren is a fully grown responsible adult, and either she has the mental capacity and ability to discern the difference between mythology and reality, or she does not.

3- This laughable attempt to belie the truth, with not being a lie because she believes otherwise, is truly fantasy and delusional. This is the same delusional thought process that Hitler used, which was motivated by his pure hatred in his delusional belief that the Jews were responsible for Germany’s failure and destruction in WWI, along with his so called belief of a world wide Jewry conspiracy.

Thus, as everything else a liberal democrat says and does, it is politically motivated in every way possible.

Anon Y. Mous | May 24, 2012 at 1:02 am

You cannot have a lie without an intent to deceive. Personally, I doubt she ever really believed it. However, words have meaning, and that certainly includes the word “lie”.

OldSoul7777 | May 29, 2012 at 6:27 pm

1/32 Native American, even if true, does not constitute minority status. Tribal membership requires a minimum of 1/4 ancestry. I have a blue-eyed, red-haired step mother from a state in the deep South who is 1/8 Choctaw. She believed through family lore that her ancestry was Cherokee, but research disclosed that the tribe was Choctaw. My blue eyed half-siblings, including my blonde half-sister are each 1/16 Choctaw. This is not minority status. My brother is a Harvard grad and my sister graduated from Wellesley. All are MDs. None ever had minority status.
I live in Minneapolis and we have the largest urban population of Native Americans in the USA. Many are fair skinned and some are blue-eyed blondes.
To me the issue is claiming minority status for a infinitesimal fraction of ancestry, particularly by Harvard, but also by Ms. Warren. With all the burdens people of all combinations of ancestry might face, such as disability, poverty and national origin, why would anyone consider credit for a 1/32 ancestral claim either for diversity compliance or career advancement?
My ancestors on my father’s side were not even in the USA 5 generations ago, some having come 4 generations ago to mine iron on the Northern Peninsula of Michigan. They were miners from the Alps and found a home in the iron mines of Northern Michigan. Their children became doctors and their children’s children and their children’s children’s children. (Except for me–I am a lawyer.) One generation and the whole lot broke out of poverty when this was the “land of opportunity.”
What is deeply disturbing to me about this story is that Harvard was trying to make itself look diverse by using a 1/32 ancestry claim of a person who was evidently trying to gain some advantage by making 1/32 of a claim for being disadvantaged. As a female lawyer who is older than Elizabeth Warren, we had plenty of hardship of our own in the field, trying to compete with child-raising responsibilities for which there was not only no credit, but considerable discrimination. We persevered. Failure would have been our fault, having been given the opportunity for professional education and service to the public.
My step-mother, a decade my senior, when interviewed at her state university medical school, was asked by the Dean, “Why should I admit you to medical school when, if I do, the man who does not get admitted because you are might end up selling cars?” To which she replied, “If I am a better doctor than he is, he should sell cars.”