We’ll start with the good news. The lights are staying on in Washington D.C. There will be no government shutdown. Congress and the White House have agreed in principle to a two-year budget deal, proving compromise is possible in this era of divided government. And the deal means there will be no threat of another government shutdown until after the next election. But the news isn’t all good. To reach the deal, republicans and democrats agreed to a deal that calls for more than $2.7 trillion in spending over the next two years. That is about $320 billion in new spending, despite what was supposed to be automatic spending cuts. The agreement also calls for suspending the debt limit, allowing the government to borrow more money. Why is it that whenever our government puts together a budget that both sides can agree on, it always calls for more spending? More spending for defense, which republicans wanted, and more money for domestic programs which democrats wanted. Wasn’t there anywhere in the massive federal budget where spending cuts could be made? The answer can’t always be to throw more money at solving the nation’s problems. This deal could force annual deficits to exceed $1 trillion next year. That is not sustainable. Can’t for once both parties agree on a budget that protects taxpayers, eliminating wasteful spending, while still funding essential government programs?