Both Oars In
January 06, 2012
In good company
By Deacon Patrick Moynihan

Because I am a deacon, I usually avoid entering into the fray of political campaigns. However, I feel compelled by Romney’s use of a famous Lucille Ball comedy sketch to denigrate his opponent to comment on this recent exchange in the Republican primary. I realize political races are fraught with hyperbole and negative quips, but somehow this particular remark struck me as especially out of place, rude even.

In response to being asked about Gingrich’s failure to qualify for the Virginia...

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December 16, 2011
A Quarter of the Way
By Deacon Patrick Moynihan

I am not sure why I am so fascinated with our national highway system. Maybe it is because I spend a lot time riding on roads so bumpy and full of potholes that they could be used for batch testing Fixodent. So, yes, I do appreciate being able to drive in a straight line and to make it out of second gear. In Haiti, the only time you get to go fast and straight is down the tarmac on takeoff.    

I also appreciate the foresight demonstrated by those who persuaded our nation to invest in our...

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December 09, 2011
Off, but not lost—I hope
By Deacon Patrick Moynihan

I find myself compelled to point out that Nicholas Kristof, who appears regularly on the Op-Ed page of The New York Times, has succumbed to cheap sensationalism and anecdotalism. The two-time Pulitzer Prize winner has unfortunately become a panderer to riotous populism and emotion. His writing has become highly caloric, but lite on substance. Hopefully, this will not prove to be chronic.

It may seem cannibalistic for one columnist to attack another. But, writers don’t let better known...

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December 02, 2011
Save money, live better. Really?
By Deacon Patrick Moynihan

Given my close personal and proud connection to the CEO of one the nation’s largest banks, I cannot honestly present myself as an impartial judge in the messy street level socioeconomic debate that has erupted in our nation. But I can, without concern of personal bias, authentically gasp at the media’s recent presentation of Wal-Mart as the white knight in contrast to our myopically maligned financial institutions. Seriously, folks — that’s beyond the pale.

Two recent articles —...

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November 18, 2011
The Symmetry of History
By Deacon Patrick Moynihan

I was very young when I first heard the story about how my great-great-grandfather, Colonel John Byrne, survived a gunshot to the head in the Civil War by packing his wound with bread. He was shot while fighting with the all-Irish 155th New York Volunteer Infantry. The makeshift bandage worked, but he lost an eye. Fascinated by the tale, I have asked my mom to retell me the story several times to make sure it was not a figment of my childhood imagination.

Colonel Byrne’s unique experiences...

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November 11, 2011
Build, not patch
By Deacon Patrick Moynihan

Due to the impetuous announcement of a rushed, duct-taped plan to fund education in my country of choice, I have been thinking a lot about how subsidies impact the price of a commodity in a free market, especially one in limited supply. Of course, the most likely outcome is that the price goes up. This is one of those axioms you learn in Econ 101 — that is if you do not walk out on your professor as 70 students at Harvard did last week.  

The reason this economic principle is on my mind is...

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November 04, 2011
Economics for Everyone
By Deacon Patrick Moynihan

Can you make Yorkshire pudding?  

No? I can’t either. My mom can. In fact, my mom can make Yorkshire pudding and police 8 kids in the midst of making dinner for twenty or thirty people. Really, she can. My mom is amazing. (She also reads this column without fail. Thanks, Mom.)

My mother often made Yorkshire pudding when we had a big roast for a special occasion. By roast, I mean a big chunk of beef, not a ribbing from colleagues. But, when you have seven siblings, every family dinner is a...

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October 28, 2011
Healthy nationalism
By Deacon Patrick Moynihan

Haiti needs a shot in the arm with a dose of healthy nationalism. I am not talking about xenophobia or the sort of rabid nationalism which has crippled Cuba and Venezuela, but a national pride which can inspire a positive move toward self-sustainability.

Chile is a good example of a country that has recently displayed healthy nationalism in the face of a natural disaster. Being in a strong economic position at the time of its earthquake and having seen Haiti’s government overrun by a...

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October 21, 2011
Personalities, please exit right
By Deacon Patrick Moynihan

Early in my missionary career, I was invited to speak about our school in Haiti to a sixth grade class at Our Lady of Sorrows in Frayser, Tenn. Frayser is a largely blue-collar community of hard-working people who live north of Memphis. The school is encased in a positive moment of history. I remember being immediately impressed by the good behavior of the students.    

To help the kids understand the difference between Haiti and the U.S., I told them that the per capita income in the...

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October 14, 2011
Thinking about home
By Deacon Patrick Moynihan

Missionaries are commonly referred to by the place they serve rather than their birth place. For example, we know Agnes Gonxha Bojaxhiu of Albania as Blessed Mother Teresa of Calcutta. Fernando Martins de Bulhões, who was born and educated in Lisbon, we know as St. Anthony of Padua. This could suggest that home is not important to a missionary.  

This is simply not true. Every missionary comes from somewhere. Often, that somewhere provides the support and resources that make the mission...

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