Re "Ordeal ends as GOP gives in" (Page A1, Oct. 17): Republicans don't really want a balanced budget; they want to cut certain domestic spending. Few "fiscal conservatives" objected when President George W. Bush started the disastrously costly Iraq war. Fewer now acknowledge how much it increased the size of the federal debt.
If they really wanted to balance the federal budget, they'd suggest raising taxes and cutting expenditures for all discretionary spending, including in the massive Defense Department budget. When an individual wants to get out of debt, he needs to spend less and get a second job. You can't get out of debt fast just by reducing spending.
The conservative theory that cutting taxes generates more tax revenue has never been validated by reality. Balancing the budget is a fake excuse. Republicans just want to destroy certain social programs.
-- Bob Dreizler, Sacramento