It's probably true that things are never as good as you think, nor are they as bad as you think.
The events of the past few weeks have shown some real problems at General Motors and Ford Motor Co. It would be foolish to minimize those problems and the difficulty both companies will have getting back on solid footing.
But I also have heard a great deal of hysteria about those companies that is being passed off as gospel. It just isn't so.
We do not have an industry that is about to collapse into ruin. We are not running parallel to Rover in the United Kingdom.
We have a couple of domestic car companies that haven't seen this much competition before.
It's a brutal business today, and anyone who thinks it's going to get easier is mistaken.
There will be more competitors in the United States marketing better products. That's the reality. But there is no reason GM and Ford can't compete successfully.
They will have to attract and keep the best product, design, engineering and manufacturing folks available; keep the ones they have and create products that U.S. consumers will want to buy.
Easy? Not at all. But that's the challenge. With the right executives throughout the two companies, there is a great chance for a bright outcome.
Things are not as bad as they appear to some. GM and Ford have talent and resources. It's time to muster those resources.
It's interesting that the challenges of the 1970s and 1980s - fuel economy, emissions and safety - are all behind the car companies. There are new regulations that must be met, but nothing that will paralyze the companies.
Back then, all the car companies could do was try to meet an onslaught of government regulations that seemed darned difficult. It took all the resources of the car companies to meet them, but the companies succeeded.
Although there are still constant challenges from the federal government, it's nothing like it was 30 years ago.
It's tough out there, but it's not as bad as some would have you believe.
On the other hand, it's probably a mite more difficult than a lot might want you to believe.