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Reporters on the Job

Don't Worry, Be Happy: Staff writer Danna Harman heard a similar refrain throughout Jamaica as she worked on today's story about the economic collapse of the Caribbean sugarcane industry: "We are in a moment of crisis - only no one realizes it."

European sugar subsidies end July 1 and that's likely to leave many rural workers jobless. "But almost every Jamaican I spoke with had a laid-back attitude toward the impending problems," says Danna. "I spoke to sugar cane farmers who have never done any other work in their lives, and who support a family of 10 by cutting cane or working in a sugar factory. When I asked them what they are going to do when the sugar industry closes down, not only do they not have alternate plans, they don't seem too worried."

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Even sugar industry officials would tell Danna that the "Don't worry, be happy" attitude was misleading. Then, they would then put their feet up on their desks and shrug about the problems.

David Clark Scott
World editor