Let’s Be Positive, Folks

Let’s Be Positive, Folks

There’s assuredly no shortage of bad news across wires these days. TV, radio, blogs, friends at the PTA meeting and waitresses at the lunch counter — there’s no escaping the negative chatter. The high-altitude talk of recession and economic woe sweeps you up so high and with such frequency that it’s hard to stay focused on the ground, and to stay positive.

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I’ve been as guilty as anyone of wallowing in the negative, but after spending a few days last week with folks in the ag community at the Commodity Classic, where a near record number of growers gathered to get the scoop on what’s new in agriculture this year, I decided that I have had enough. I’m going to stay focused and positive on the future, and project this optimism as much as I can.

The rhetoric going around is urging Americans to hunker down and be overly cautious given the current market conditions. While I would never advocate being careless, I think we do the industry, and the economy, a disservice by playing it too conservatively. The industries that are doing well relative to the general economy have, I would argue, an obligation to go as “full out” as possible — to drive consumption and show the way forward. Cowering in a corner is only going to keep us on a downward spiral.

Agriculture’s fundamentals continue to be sound … I believe we need to put irrational fears aside and do what’s necessary to be the best we can be.