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Leave a Legacy

RSS By: Kevin Spafford, Legacy Project

Kevin Spafford is Farm Journal’s succession planning expert for the Farm Journal Legacy Project.  He hosts the nationally-televised ‘Leave a Legacy’ TV, facilitates an ongoing series of workshops for farm families across the U.S., and is the author of Legacy by Design: Succession Planning for Agribusiness Owners.

The Right to Rise

Dec 27, 2011

Boise ID   USDA ARSFrom Legacy Moment (12/23/2011).
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A recent Wall Street Journal editorial written by Jeb Bush and titled ‘Capitalism and the Right to Rise’ expounds on the core concept of economic freedom, "the right to rise." The column goes on to explain that the right to rise doesn't need a "libertarian utopia to exist. Rather, it requires fewer, simpler and more outcome-oriented rules." The author opines that "government’s role is not to shape the marketplace but to help prepare its citizens to prosper from it."

"The right to rise" is an idea that should be promulgated. Like the right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness, the concept is as American as apple pie and baseball. We live in a world that is given to parceling out rights as obligations of correctness--which is quickly becoming intrusive, controlling and oppressive. As a society, we’re obsessed with trying to prevent failure and ensure a safe, if uneventful, passage through life. But at what cost?

If wealth is the accumulation of value exchanged for assuming risk, what becomes of a society that limits risk? Doesn’t it stand to reason that it also limits reward? As agripreneurs, I suggest we assert our right to rise. Safety nets inhibit growth, imply a false sense of security and promote control. The life of an entrepreneur is spent on the edge, defying the odds. Business owners live for life-defining moments. They revel in the unknown and appreciate the chaos involved in creating something bigger than self.

Wishing all the best for you and your families for Christmas and a prosperous 2012!


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