What would a birthday be without some commemoration? Noman Says is one year old today.
It occurred to me just yesterday that somebody out there might be invoking me as an authority in an argument, or mentioning me in a conversation: "Noman says..." That's my hope, especially for readers overseas.
It's been a good year, though I'm amazed I stayed with it. If the President had been less forceful shoving his defective ideas about state power down the country's throat, I might not have.
Then, there was the economy--always a lively topic. May it once again become safe in America to earn money and better one's lot in life without running to the government for permission or a handout.
Movies were fun to write about. But I never did get around to singing the praises of some great films I saw with my family, e.g., The Sound of Music (1965), Rear Window (1954), Key Largo (1948), The Quiet Man (1952) and Roman Holiday (1953). Your family will love them, and so will you.
It was also fun sharing my passions in music. Cuban soneros--e.g., Papaito, Monguito, Joseito Fernandez and Abelardo Barroso--are wafting through my soul these days.
Try Joseito's "Tu Tierra y tu Libertad." "Cuidate mi hermano tu tierra y tu libertad": take care my brother for your land and your liberty. It makes me weep for America.
I really enjoy looking for just the right picture, or video. It takes time, but I hope it adds to the reader's pleasure. It does to mine, and I marvel at the wealth of graphic art available at a click.
I recently dropped the trope of writing in the third person. Some people liked it. A few really didn't like it, including my wife. It reminded her of Bob Dole. So, that settled that.
Richard John Neuhaus once wrote that the most important thing is for a writer to find his voice. I'm still searching. But, my natural sarcasm is starting to flow more freely.
I'd hoped to bring an intellectual tone to the topics I discussed. I haven't yet given up hope, but the times are testing me sorely.
In a sane world, celebrity flame throwers like Ann Coulter and Michael Savage (both very intelligent people) would not be necessary. Draw your own conclusion from the fact that they are valuable reference points in the struggle to maintain one's sanity in a metaphysically deficient culture.
I don't want to be a flame thrower. But, being Hispanic, my blood runs hot to begin with. And, it doesn't take much to get me going.
Fr. C. John McCloskey once told me that you write when you can no longer not write. I hit that point last year after having some health problems. I didn't want to die without saying my piece. And, I wanted my children to have a record of what their dad thought about things.
I'd spent the past twenty years of my life trying not to leave a trail of what I thought in order to protect a career in academe. So far, so good. Of course, all it takes is one Liberal nazi of a student to derail an entire class and make one's life, and institution, miserable. Pray that if I'm ever confronted with my decidedly non-PC views in class, I'll be able to mow the little sucker down and leave them laughing--him too--at the pile of grass in his seat.
My favorite post of the year was entitled "The Entitlement Mentality." I wrote about dependency, President Obama's Auntie Zeituni Onyango, and the problem of people thinking they are owed a living. No society can afford that, whether or not it's true as a transcendent matter, not even a Christian one that wants to lend everyone a hand.
The President has bitterly disappointed me from day one when he began pushing through a trillion dollar giveaway when the last thing the country could afford was more debt. Six trillion dollars of it later, we are a transformed economy. We will either inflate, default or tax ourselves into permanent recession. I think he knew that.
As I mentioned sometime during the year, I knew him in Law School. He impressed me then. Something bad happened to him in the Saul Alinsky finishing school for radical revolutionaries, aka community organizers. He depresses me now.
But, something really snapped when he came back from his summer vacation with political handlers and money men in Martha's Vineyard, and delivered his American Jobs Act speech to a joint session of Congress. It was clear that he had nothing but smoke and mirrors, name calling and eye poking.
He even staged a fake terror alert to divert attention from his stink bomb. Unlike Lebron, he had no game; no real game anyways. In sum, he wasted everyone's time and picked a needless, divisive and inflammatory class-warfare fight that he has waged everyday since.
It is evident that he has one plan, one single-minded purpose: to expand the scope of government, increase its size, divert the nation's resources to its upkeep, and control the people's every activity (except sexual, as long as it's deviant) through it. All his rhetoric and head-swiveling are for show.
My tone has darkened since then. We're in worse trouble than I thought possible. Now, he wants to send Afghan terrorists back to the unraveling Middle East in order to placate the Taliban, and our country hovers on the brink of a second S&P downgrade. His team is gearing up to protect ObamaCare at any cost so that--as we've all learned recently if somehow, somebody didn't see it coming--enemies of the sexual revolution (feminist version) can be crushed under jackboot.
Themes of importance to me in no particular order are pointing out the natural link between Statism and the culture of death, and the corresponding one between classical liberal political economy and the culture of life; the social necessity of inculcating an individual ethos of independence and self-determination (full well knowing that we depend on many others, most of all God) rather than one of entitlement and dependency; the importance of children and family to a human life, heart, soul, country and economy; the centrality of the Church and Jesus Christ to authentic American culture; the importance of classical, philosophical realism to personal and social harmony; and the crucial necessity for the Church to develop a more constructive relationship with modernity, especially economic liberalism.
My bio says a lot about me, though not all. I'm a family man of faith who seeks the truth, and thinks he knows where to find it: in a person, Jesus Christ, and the Roman Catholic Church that he left behind in order to accompany us in our search.
I love God above all (or strive to within the confines of my failings and imperfections) and thank him for my life, love, faith, and reason. I adore him in his ineffable unity, truthfulness, goodness and beauty.
I hope to convey that commitment in my life, and writing, and ask him to make an instrument of me for his purposes, giving me the grace not to impede him. I pray for him to deliver me from the forces of evil that prowl about the world seeking the ruin of souls, and beg him to protect my family, and country.
If he gives me another year of life, I pray for him to give me a voice, and to help me engage this culture for his greater glory. Thank you for reading.