In railing single-mindedly against the federal budget deficit — as open to charges of hypocrisy as it is — Republicans provided a rationale for their new, unrelenting rampage of budget cuts.
The stench of hypocrisy, of course, comes because the GOP began crying about the deficit only after it forced a temporary extension of tax cuts for millionaires and billionaires, all of which are financed by deficit spending.
Nevertheless, let's leave that 800-pound double-standard alone for the time being.
What the Republicans have failed to do, however, is offer the American people any explanation of why they want to cut the specific programs they've targeted with their fiscal ax.
Why, for instance, do they want to slice environmental protection to the bone, and eliminate spending on PBS and NPR, for instance, but leave the bloated Pentagon budget pretty much as is?
Indeed, Republicans actually want to grow the federal deficit by nearly a half-billion dollars to fund a jet engine even the Department of Defense says is unnecessary.
Let's also leave the dubious wisdom of that decision alone for now, given that the discussion of it would fill an entire column by itself.
Taken as a whole, however, Republicans have provided us citizens no roadmap to what they want to chop, and what they don't.
In other words, to borrow a phrase, they seem to lack "the vision thing."
And that absence has not gone unnoticed.
It's not Democrats or other partisan opponents that care, but folks who Republicans need and want to be on their side.
People like H. Bliss Dayton. Dayton's a banker from fiscally conservative New Hampshire, but even he doesn't get why Republicans are doing what they're trying to do.