Submitted by Ella Harrison
I view my glass as half full rather than half empty. It’s a choice I made many years ago and one I still make every day. I worked for 20 years at several Fortune 500 companies, worked through an MBA at a good school while raising 3 kids as a single mother. I was the first and only single mother VP with an MBA in my region. I am currently married to an active duty soldier, and I have a son who will be 18 this year who survived a childhood brain tumor. What I learned as my family navigated that virtual s### storm, was that you have a choice. You have a choice to live each day with intention to be thankful. Otherwise the storm will consume you. You can wallow in self pity, and become a Debbie Downer, but you’ll never get through the storm stronger with that mentality. If you’re thrown to the wolves you need to be strong enough to come back leading the pack.
What I’ve noticed with Conrad Doyle’s ramblings, is that he is definitely not a glass half full kind of guy. That is all I’ve garnered from his Op Ed in all these weeks. I’d use the term Op Ed loosely, as he seems to lack the fundamental understanding of the craft of writing to write a structurally correct Op Ed. His most recent article was so poorly written, I gave up trying to understand it half-way through and I moved on to enjoying the composting article. (I would rather read about cow manure…and I read that composting article twice.) I’m not sure how or why Conrad Doyle hasn’t gotten sued, but if he continues on this path he will be. There are rules regarding libel, correctly quoting sources etc that aren’t protected by the right of free speech. We all have the right to free speech, but that doesn’t mean we have the right to engage in libel. I also have zero interest in knowing who is hiding behind Conrad Doyle’s pen name. The Conrad Doyles of the world don’t deserve my time, or anyone else’s time. Yes Conrad, while I know you enjoy your pedestal of attention for your angry ranting, people do not actually want to read that garbage, and they don’t care who you are.
Anyone on the outside looking in at our beautiful little community would think we were a bunch of backwards jerks after reading his articles. The truth is we aren’t. This is a friendly and beautiful place to live.
It’s time to move forward and look at the positives for both the granary and the steel plant. If memory serves me correctly, there were a number of farmers that didn’t care for the prices they were getting at our granary. Incidentally, (if this piece of information printed in the paper is correct) the old operators of the granary are being financially incented not to reopen the granary. Meaning they are getting paid not to reopen it. Quite a significant sum. Enough for the old owner to be on an episode of “Private Island Homes” on TV. It seems this could be why the previous granary operator isn’t accepting any locations offered. It’s cushier to live on a private island counting one’s millions than operating a business. Before anyone decides to say that this choice to pay them not to reopen was somehow a dirty political decision on the part of our elected officials, I’m going to remind you to review the first paragraph. I have an MBA. I managed a half a billion in liabilities. I’m quite sure they came up with that figure to avoid being sued by the granary for a larger figure since they were booted out of their contract.
Let’s move on and think of the bright side of moving the granary. This is an opportunity for the farmers to band together and form a co-op in a new location for selling their grain. They could control the prices. The existing granary could possibly be dismantled and moved. There are agricultural grants that could be applied for to help with funding. It’s also an opportunity for a different granary company to come in and open a granary here. An established granary company could already have the funding and backing to get this done quickly. The lawsuit Lincoln Trail Growers filed will not successfully reopen the granary here in Brandenburg. It’s only stalling the progress of moving the granary and lining the lawyer’s pockets.
Last but not least, let’s talk about the last bit of sun that needs to shine on the whole issue. The steel plant brings with it good paying jobs. The average household income in Meade County is around $40,000 per year. That’s a tough number to raise a family on. The median salary for a steel worker was $53,970 in 2018. We need to celebrate and embrace the forward momentum Nucor brings our community. This overall is a positive for our county and we are past due to embrace it. We need to work together going forward to ensure that we make the most of this opportunity.