Thursday, February 12, 2009

Stimulate something please

With the passing and editing of the stimulus package, I just think to myself that SOMETHING's gotta stimulate...and I know a lot of my friends need some stimulating, too.

I was raised in Decatur and Forsyth, Illinois. Most people have never heard of Decatur, even though there are over 80,000 people in the "city" and is a HQ for a Fortune 500 company that is the largest manufacturer of soy & corn products--ADM. Decatur also has a office for Catterpillar. A plant where production could turn from farm machinery to military tanks within minutes! (if the country every needed it) Lastly, Tate & Lyle has is HQ'd in Decatur. T&L has a plant, Staley, that produces products from renewable food sources. So, class, what's the business trend we are seeing here???

IT'S BLUE COLLAR. Agriculture & manufacturing. Which means what? This city cannot afford job losses in this economy.

While ADM had an upward trend compared to the downward forecasted revenue reports, Caterpillar has decided to reduce departments/locations across the globe. Thousands of workers are being laid off, and Caterpillar chose Decatur as a location to shut down some areas in order to save money.

Jobs lost in a blue collar town where other jobs are not plentiful to begin with?

It's devistating. I have friends that have friends and family at Cat. If hundreds of people are losing these jobs, but they don't have anywhere to go, these workers' families are put into a horrible position and reality. This reminds me of what happened when I was growing up...

Bridgestone Firestone had a huge plant in Decatur, and it had been open for over 50 years and had about 1,500 employees alone in this ONE plant. The plant closure happened around the time when Bridgestone had its tire recall that ultimately had them losing MILLIONS upon MILLIONS of dollars. Decatur was really never the same. There were tons of workers unemployed, families without income and no other jobs for these workers. ADM and Staley were immediate go-to's for a lot of people.

I grew up in the Midwest (obviously) surrounded by corn and soy fields. And if you grew up in this area and have experienced winds, rains and tornadoes, you would probably know and believe that these natural things could lead to a lot of good jobs, fuel/food sources, etc. We need to reinvent the wheel and model for "what is normal" in living, purchasing, and producing.

We need to believe that the money put into it now is an investment on what could come out of it. We need to be a leader in the world when it comes to using our brains and our own resources to live off of. Not someone else's stuff. We need to stop being greedy and lazy and thinking that everything will just come to us on its own and fix itself.

Please, let this economy stimulate...

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