Scary Business!


Contributing Editor
Walter W. Pickut

It’s the Halloween Season and things can get pretty scary.

This week the Jamestown Gazette wants to help our readers debunk a few scary things and introduce you to a few good ones at the same time.

First, for folks like me and lots of you, even something as tame as farming could be a little bit scary. Cattle farming, for instance, could seem risky if you think about leaving your most prized and valuable assets, your product— meet on the half— out in bad weather, exposed to diseases, vulnerable to predators that sneak through your fences, and eventually susceptible to unpredictable meat-market changes.

That’s why we offer you a wonderful opportunity to “Meat Your Farmer,” on page 11 of this edition of your Jamestown Gazette and find out that not only is cattle farming not a scary business, but a challenge-well-met.

The second bit of scary business we will take on this week is Halloween itself. In recent years rumors and scary stories have made this historically fun and exciting holiday into something frightening. However, according to the website how stuff,

“Although there have been a few reports of candy tampering over the years, nearly all of them have been debunked as hoaxes or pranks. Until 2000, there hadn’t been a single proven incident in which a child was injured by Halloween candy from a stranger”… Except for one account of a man who put needles into candy bars and handed them out. “One child was pricked with a needle when he bit into a candy bar, but neither he nor any other children were seriously injured.”

Our third scary business to debunk this week has to do with the business of business itself.

Anyone who has started a new business, or tried to keep an old business afloat in hard times, has discovered that it is a scary business.

That’s the reason this week’s Jamestown Gazette brings you a cover story about the business of innovation, creativity, and entrepreneurial spirits rebuilding the industrial and manufacturing infrastructure of our region.

The burning of fossil fuels over the last few centuries have changed Planet Earth from a rural, agricultural way of life to a comparative paradise of modern conveniences, modern medicine, invention and exploration on previously undreamed-of scales.

Unfortunately, such progress came at the price of contaminating, polluting, and depleting the very planet to which it brought such great benefits. As a result, the business of doing business has to change before we push ourselves out of our own nest by fouling it beyond repair.

This means scary business for tens of thousands of factories and their processes, and tens of millions of employees who will have to be eliminated, unless they can be changed.

The simplest example is in converting gasoline-powered cars to electric-powered vehicles, and all the industries that create them. Our story about Retool ‘22 on page 1 of this week’s Gazette is how we will change the scary business of change itself into phenomenal new opportunities for profit, success, and the new employment of a thousand kinds for the new, coming electrical age.

So, if change is scary, our suggestion is to look beyond it to the future that is changed for the better for all of us. Please accept our invitation to ride the wave of new, clean technology into the future.

Enjoy the read.

Walter W. Pickut
Contributing Editor

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Walt Pickut’s writing career began with publishing medical research in1971 while working at the Jersey City Medical Center and the NYU Hospital and School of Medicine. Walt holds board registries in respiratory care and sleep technology as well as bachelor's degrees in biology and communication, and a master's degrees in physiology from Fairleigh-Dickinson University in New Jersey, with additional graduate work in mass communication completed at SUNY Amherst. He currently teaches Presentational Speaking in the Houghton College PACE program at JCC and holds memberships in the Society of Professional Journalists and the American Society of Business Publication Editors. He lives in Jamestown with his wife Nancy, an MSW social worker, and has three children: Dr. Cait Lamberton in Pittsburgh, Bill Pickut, a marketing executive in Chicago, and Rev. Matt Pickut in Plymouth, IN.