A reader writes:

         [it] should ask a commission to find a third of that money from higher revenues, a third from entitlement cuts and a third from discretionary spending. Welcome to the world of grownups, where tax cuts don't magically pay for themselves -- and where middle-class people must pay more for middle-class benefits.

I note that the newly-enlightened Mr. Bartlett leaves out one category in his tripartite approach to budgetary sanity - the military budget.  If we're going to continue to spend about $700-800 billion annually, mostly to enrich defense contractors, then we're careening toward the fiscal black hole that's swallowed up many a fine empire in the past.