The Weekly Newspaper serving the citizens of Morenci, Mich., Fayette, Ohio, and surrounding areas.

  • KayseInField
    IN THE FIELD—2004 Morenci graduate Kayse Onweller works in a test plot of wheat in Texas. She’s part of Bayer CropScience’s North American wheat breeding program based in Nebraska, where she completed post-graduate work in plant breeding and genetics.
  • Front.winner
    REFEREE Camden Miller raises the hand of Morenci Jr. Dawgs wrestler Ryder Ryan as his opponent leaves the mat in disappointment. Morenci’s youth wrestling program served as host for a tournament Saturday morning to raise money for the club. Additional photos are on the back page.
  • Front.bank.2
    SHERWOOD STATE Bank opened its Fayette office at a grand opening Friday morning, drawing a large crowd to view the renovated building. Above, Burt Blue talks to teller Cindy Funk, while his wife, Jackie, looks around the new office. The Blues missed the opening and took a quick tour on Tuesday. Few traces remain of the former grocery store and theater, however, part of the original brick wall still shows in the hallway leading to the back of the building. The drive-through window should be ready for customers later in the month.
  • Front.carry.casket
    CARRYING—Riley Terry (blue jacket) and Mason Vaughn lead the way, carrying an empty casket outside to the hearse waiting at the curb. Morenci juniors and seniors visited Eagle Funeral Home last week to learn about the role of a funeral director and to understand the process of arranging for a funeral.
  • Front.lift
    MORENCI student Dalton McCowan puts everything into a dead lift attempt Saturday morning during the Wyseguy Push/Pull event. Lifters helped raise more than $1,600 for the family of the late Devin Wyse, a former Morenci power-lifter who graduated last year. Commemorative T-shirts are still available by contacting teacher Dan Hoffman.
  • Front.make.three
    FROM THE LEFT, Landon Wilkins, Ryan White and Logan Blaker try out their artistic skills Saturday afternoon at the Morenci PTO’s first Date to Create event. More than 50 people showed up to create decorated planks of wood to hang from rope. The event served as a fund-raiser for miscellaneous PTO projects. Additional photos are on the back of this week’s Observer.
  • Front.F.office
    NEW OFFICES—Fayette village administrator Steve Blue speaks with tax administrator Genna Biddix at the new front desk of the village office. Village council members voted to use budgeted renovation funds targeted for the old office and instead buy the vacant bank building on the corner of Main and Fayette streets. The old office was sold to Sherwood State Bank. When everything is put into place in the spacious new village office, an open house will be scheduled. Council member David Wheeler donated all of his time needed to make changes in the bank interior to fit the Village’s needs.

Do nothing: Send Congress home to save some cash 2011.12.07

Written by David Green.

The country of Belgium has inadvertently provided the U.S. with a way of solving a good share of its financial woes: Just do nothing.

Belgium went without a government for 536 days—a modern world record—and that offers a solution for us. According to an analysis by the Center for American Progress, if Congress continues in its current deadlocked fashion and is unable to pass any measures to address our economic woes, the budget deficit will nearly disappear.

In other words, if our elected officials just went home, the federal deficit would become smaller and smaller. Perhaps we could just lay them off and force them to live off unemployment benefits and buy their own health insurance. We know that’s a silly example because 47 percent of our representatives and senators are millionaires.

Projections by the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office find that if Congress were to do nothing until January 2013, the budget deficit—as a percentage of the gross domestic product—would plunge from its current 8.5 percent to only 1.6 percent by 2014.

If nothing is done about the special debt reduction committee’s failure to agree on a solution, then $1.2 trillion worth of cuts will automatically begin.

If Congress can’t come up with the votes to renew the Bush-era tax cuts—now under an extension from Obama-era actions—the debt will fall by $3 trillion, or about 40 percent of the deficit.

These are the tax cuts that benefit the wealthiest five percent of households.

Other tax breaks and Medicare adjustments are scheduled to expire by the end of the year, adding up to an additional $2 trillion.

In fact, says Michael Linden of the Center for American Progress, the do-nothing option reduces the deficit by much more than any other plan on the table, and all of them, including the Republican budget plan, would increase debt by $1 trillion or more.

Linden knows the do-nothing plan does not necessarily lead to the best outcome, and it leaves unanswered questions. How would it affect job creation and economic growth? Who would bear the burden? Would it solve underlying problems?

The problem is that Congress will likely only make things worse, making the simple do-nothing plan somewhat attractive. Perhaps we should just send them all home.

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