The First Electronic Church of America

S A I N T S   &   B I R T H D A Y   P A G E

March 16, 1997

        Saint Of The Day:

        Daniel Patrick Moynihan

Daniel Patrick Moynihan, who was born on March 16, 1927, deserves FECHA's nomination as "a living saint" because he has served with distinction in the cabinet or sub-cabinet of four presidents and because, since 1977, he has been the U.S. Senate's resident intellectual, gadfly and prophet. He is a remarkably clear thinker and very much his own man, and a conservative in the root sense of the term: he is enamored of the old institutions, and intolerant of the extremes on both right and left. Though a Democrat, he has had an undisguised contempt for knee-jerk liberals, ever since they savaged his 1965 Moynihan Report on The Negro Family, which he wrote as an assistant secretary in the Labor Department of the Nixon Administration. In that report, he pointed out, quite correctly, that the nation was in deep trouble because of the marginalization of black men, and the consequent deterioration of the black family. The nation could not move ahead, he insisted, until black males could start feeling good about themselves. To do that, they needed jobs. And, until they were able to get those jobs, they needed what the Nixon Administration tried to establish by law, something called The Family Assistance Plan (much of which was Moynihan's idea). The FAP amounted to a cash dole, to replace welfare. But liberals didn't back the FAP, and it failed to become law, and the welfare problem and all of its secondary side-effects, including the stigma of being on welfare, is still with us. Moynihan knows about welfare. He got a first hand taste of it when his father simply walked out on the family one day when young Patrick was 12, and his mother had to go on welfare -- until she started up her own bar in Manhattan's Hell's Kitchen. Moynihan didn't go to snappy prep schools, or to an Ivy League college. He went to New York's City College, and, to this day, holds a certain contempt for "rich college f$@#s." "They get my ass by the way they sit there and wallow in every kind of economic and social advantage our society has to offer and remain completely spiritually and mentally mediocre, while people who really could learn go stewing away at CCNY. They need a good swift kick in their blue blood asses. They need to get hurt once in a while. They need to get some feelings in them." Moynihan, who teaches at Harvard when he isn't at work in Washington, has received countless honorary degrees, awards and medals. While many senators prefer to downplay their intelligence (thinking displays of smarts do not help get them elected, or re-elected), Moynihan revels in ideas, and loves getting people to think. He is the author of more than a dozen books. George Will, the Washington columnist, says that Sen. Daniel Patrick Moynihan "has written more books than most senators have read." If you write him c/o of the U.S. Senate, 464 Russell Senate Bldg, Washington, DC 20510, he will answer you. He answers all his mail, you see.

MODEL: Moynihan's passion and his wit. He knows what he believes, and he doesn't hesitate to tell anyone who will listen to him. But he does so with wit.

Your Birthday Today:

March 16

Day of the Practical Dreamer

Imaginative, Pragmatic, Dynamic

Whimsical, Neglectful, Jaded

Feet on the ground, head in the clouds. If you were born on March 16, you combine the imaginative and the practical into an appealing personality. You are sometimes swayed by a whim, but generally are pretty good at balancing your contrasting natures. Ruled by the number 7 and the planet Neptune, you can easily get out of touch with reality.

The middle of the road. Find an occupation that allows you to express your inspirational and practical sides. Your ability to see another's point-of-view and to compromise gracefully may lead to your success. But beware of selling out your own values and interests, particularly for gain. You'll be sorry later.

A charmed life. This comes not only from your own positive attitude and self-acceptance, but also a certain unexplainable good luck. You also seem to draw the best from every situation. But in your sunny world, you sometimes overlook danger, negative forces and resentment from others, all of which can blow up in your face. You must learn to read the signs of impending disaster and correct the situation.

You give up. Your neglectful side causes you to quit projects before they come to fruition. Accepting the blame, from yourself or others, does not help matters. You must learn to see the value in focusing on a goal and sticking with things.

Some advice: Handling heavy responsibilities like finances, a family, and a solid residence will be the most challenging and rewarding aspects of your life. Beware of falling into a negative rut.

Also born on this day:
James Madison (US president) Jerry Lewis (comedian, actor) Bernardo Bertolucci (Italian film director) Simon Ohm (German physicist, formulated law of electric current) Armand Sully Prud'homme (Nobel Prize-winning poet) Daniel Patrick Moynihan (senator, New York) Elvira Burns (designer of US social security) Mathew Flinders (British explorer of Australia) Rene Daumal (surrealist fantasy writer) Isabelle Huppert (French film actress) Alice Hoffman (novelist) Tommy Flanagan (jazz pianist) Nancy Wilson (guitarist, songwriter, Heart) Sybil Bedford (British writer)