Toyota’s announcement on Monday was not the kind of news most Northeast Mississippian’s would call welcome on the eve of Christmas. Of course, such news would not be welcome at any time of the year anyway.
It’s not secret that we have all been somewhat nervous about the progress of the Toyota project partly as a result of the first delay announcement, but a lot by a perceived reluctance by the company to make very many commitments of late.
But let us be very fair to our future neighbors, in light of the condition of the economy of the United States, the current market for automobiles and the prospects for the recovery of our collapsed stock market, a reasonable delay in the execution of such enormous plans falls on the right side of a smart thing to do.
However, before we get carried away with the kinds of rumors that are created and accompany such announcements, let us also give credit where credit is due. The Toyota Company has not reached the level of respect within their industry or throughout the economies of the world by not living up to their commitments. The are, as they are demonstrating here, still the conservative, cautious, but dynamic industrial giant we thought they were when we welcomed the announcement of their intentions to come to Northeast Mississippi. Executives of such companies rarely fail to use necessary delays and adjustments to insure they remain within the advantage required to maintain success.
So before we get too carried away, let’s consider that there are details about this decision that we may never know and that, in the scheme of things, to not follow-through with the opening and operation of a plant in Northeast Mississippi would certainly be out of character for one of the shrewdest, if not the shrewdest, automobile manufacturer in the world. Were they not, we would wouldn’t be so proud to someday make them our neighbors.