Of course they have to do it. Congress needs to pass some package of interim spending cuts and tax “reforms” to head off the drastic reductions (known for some reason as “sequestration”) that will automatically go into effect on March 1st because . . . well, because once again our representatives have backed themselves into a corner on the elementary issue of what kind of country we want and how to pay for its governance. “At some point, Washington has to deal with its spending problem,’” said John Boehner yesterday. “Now I’ve watched them kick this can down the road for 22 years since I’ve been here. I’ve had enough. It’s time to act.” It’s worth noting that Boehner is not exactly a disinterested observer. He is the Speaker of the House, the person who is supposed to lead his colleagues, not just wring his hands. In fairness, though, a budget would help, and the president needs to submit one. It is wrong, I think, to consider the budgeting process as simply a financial exercise in allocating the money we have (or even the money we don’t have). It is a vision for where we want to take the nation and a blueprint for the journey. Last November, Americans had a clear choice, and a majority of us gave Barack Obama a mandate to govern because we believe in his vision. Now we want to see his blueprint. Why should plotting the nation's journey be any less exciting in 2013 than it was in 1789?