They aren't superior nor inferior. It's like the difference between driving an automatic and manual transmission. Warriors are more like manual, they take a bit more effort to learn and drive well, but they're fun to drive. Paladins are more like automatics, they are easier to pick up, but if you want to really maximize your driving, you really have to do your best with the smaller toolset you've got.
It really depends. I think more people play warriors not because they're more or less powerful, but because the general perception (mine included) is that they're more fun.