Saturday, March 18, 2006
He said that compared to agronomic crops like beans, corn, wheat, oats Horticulture is a larger economic component of the total ag sales.
I knew that the screw was turning. I didn't know it had already turned.
Think about it. In my lifetime, (I was going to say short but I don't anymore) production agronomic agriculture has been eclipsed by intensive horticultural production. Certainly on fewer acres but with much larger dollars per acre.
I think this is a good thing. It means that subsidies should be examined. It means that states like North Dakota should think about the structure of it’s agricultural economy.
It does make me wonder about my alma mater, North Dakota State University. A land grant college. The school where I got my 4 year degree (in 5) in Horticulture 40 years ago. When I first attended it was North Dakota Agriculture College. We had a department. Dr Lana. Hundreds of students.
Then, Horticulture became part of plant sciences. Then something else. Now it's nearly non-existent.
Horticulture eclipses Agronomy nationwide. NDSU deletes Horticulture as a curricula.
Something is seriously wrong with this picture. Joe Chapman (a good guy) who is the current President of NDSU is thinking about leaving. Maybe the next guy will have a deeper passion about this new agriculture that North Dakota doesn't even realize exists.
Friday, March 17, 2006
I Know some of you hate it when I post something I read somewhere else. But sometimes it's really good. So, bear with me. This is worth the read. Jim Paluch is a writer/trainer from OHIO. I needed to give him attribution. Read the whole thing. It'll be good for your soul.
Character Is Destiny
Where does character begin? It begins in our thoughts, in what we think. Ask yourself these questions: If I were invisible--able to do anything I wanted without consequences or repercussions--would I be kind or unkind? Honest or dishonest? Respectful or disrespectful? Reliable or unreliable? Your answers would say a lot about you as a person. These questions cause you to hold a mirror up and look at the inner you. Once we are honest with ourselves and understand the inner person . . . then we can begin to build or reshape the habits that determine our character and then ultimately our destiny.
It has been said that the farmer who cheats is only cheating himself--put off mending the fence today and youll be chasing livestock tomorrow. It comes down to a choice: to do what is most convenient or to do the right thing. Are you doing what is easiest, most enjoyable, or most profitable-or are you doing what is right? Sometimes they can be one in the same, but, when they are not, then we put our character to the test. Though most people would never think of stealing someone elses property, they might think it is all right to give less than their best to their work, their family or even themselves. Think about the challenges you face each day to choose between what is convenient and what is right. It is the clear choice between evading responsibility and accepting responsibility. The habit of accepting responsibility paves the way to strong character and a great destiny.
Vince Lombardi said, You dont do what is right once in a while, but all the time. Success is a habit. Winning is habit. Your daily commitment to exercising your ethical muscles to the point that doing what is right is just a natural habit will reap incredible rewards for you. You work at character just as an athlete works at refining a skill in their chosen sport. The greatest athletes are never done improving on their skills. There is always a little more to be done in refining our character and developing the habit of doing the right thing. As a leader, your commitment to doing the right thing is setting an example to those that have chosen to follow you.
Albert Schweitzer said, Example is not the main thing in life; it is the only thing. What example is your team following? Your family? Your friends? I have often said to leaders, "Your crew is a direct reflection of you." It goes beyond this . . . your life is a reflection of you. Your character is your destiny. Create your destiny with the next action you take . . . do the right thing.
- Jim Paluch
Definition of CHARACTER
The ability to carry out a good resolution long after the mood in which it was made has left you
Jefferson on Character
- Thomas Jefferson
The Man in the Glass
When you get what you want in your struggle for self
For it isn't your father or mother or wife
You may be like Jack Horner and chisel a plum
He's the fellow to please never mind all the rest.
You may fool the whole world down the pathway of years,
- Author Unknown
Stretching the Truth
Do you ever S T R E T C H the truth ? ? ?
Remember the truth comes in one dimension, straight up . . . and stretching it is just that . . . a stretch!
"I desire so to conduct the affairs of this administration that if at the end, when I come to lay down the reins of power, I have lost every other friend on earth, I shall at least have one friend left, and that friend shall be down inside me."
- Abraham Lincoln
"Character cannot be developed in ease and quiet. Only through experience of trial and suffering can the soul be strengthened, vision cleared, ambition inspired, and success achieved."
"Fame is a vapor, popularity an accident, riches take wing, and only character endures."
"Character is that which reveals moral purpose, exposing the class of things a man chooses and avoids."
"A good character carries with it the highest power of causing a thing to be believed."
Thursday, March 16, 2006
I have experienced a few milleborne in the last few days.
First, the bad news. I turned 61 years old. Ides of March. I’ll survive but I don’t like it. I’m older and crankier than ever. Now watching the movie Grumpy Old Men is sort of “SO WHAT” to me now. I have lots of days like that.
But time limps along and I don’t.
Second, A friend and business associate of mine for nearly 30 years left town. In the late 70s we were in a Dale Carnegie Class together. He was so bright. I kept in touch and later we went into business together. After the business closed he moved to California. I moved to Chicagoland to take a new job. We needed a smart quality software guy to augment our development efforts. Bill was the man I thought of at once. So he hopped in his little Fiat 150 or something like that (a large matchbox sized car) and motored to Chicagoland. On the 15th of March exactly 20 years ago he moved here. Two ides of Marchisms. Does it mean anything???? Probably not.
One of the men he worked with and meshed with immediately was Ken. Ken was a contract software developer who just plain fit hand in glove with Bill. I enjoyed and still do enjoy getting together with all of them.
And on the Ides of March a year ago these two couples were those who came to dinner when we spent a terrific memorable evening of ideas and fun. I wrote about it.
Now Bill and Barb are off to Sunny and Cool North Carolina. We will miss him. Ken (the other one in this picture who isn’t me) and Ellen will miss him too.
The picture of 3 women and 2 men above (I took the Picture) are Left to Right- Peggy, Ellen and Ken and Barb and Bill. The three men below are Ken, Bill and me left to right. I don't even want to think of the cumulative age of all of us. It's not 4 digits yet anyway.
The other milleborne this week was the Worship Leader from our church leaveing. He has been there since we have. He’s a good man and has brought us far. I can’t wait to see how much further we have yet to go.
Take care Chad.
Milestones. I don’t like to see them go by but you can’t get to the next one unless you keep on peddling. I will only fall down if I stop peddling, so I keep on.
Tuesday, March 14, 2006
Monday, March 13, 2006
It's all over. The wave of anger and protest is growing every day. I am adding my voice as small as it is.
Public education hasn't worked for a couple decades. In it's present form it has no prospect of working.
I am going to write on this further. But before I do I want anyone who disagrees or wonders what I have against public education to read the following essays by John Stossel. He is no fan of Public Education. He has been campaigning to enable choice in education. Vouchers. I am joining his campaign.
So, that you can know what the issues are read the following and then be ready for more.
The facts are, Public Education no longer works
Open Competition for the Education Dollar will help Children
Being a GOOD teacher is not rewarded and must be
The Teachers Unions are destroying our education system and must be put down forever
The net of this discussion is this, Public Education, particularly k-8 is so destructive and so broken that no incremental fix can ever be made. Schools must be closed and rebuilt for performance from the ground up.
Join the fight to abolish monopoly public education. Competitive schools fighting to do a better job of teaching your children (customers) is the only salvation left.
Reward competence, fire incompetence. Make Public Education about education again and not about teachers.