Remember when Republicans were “deficit hawks?”

They used to say, “We can’t afford that. The deficit must be controlled.” Now they are crazed for tax cuts, and the deficit is soaring. To pay it down, they will attack every social program: Medicare, Social Security, everything but defense.

James Hochman of the Washington Post says the Administration is focusing on DC politics to draw attention away from substantive issues.

“THE BIG IDEA: Speculation about who wrote that anonymous op-ed continues to be an absorbing parlor game, but few people are talking about the crushing national debt.

“Despite a strong economy, which could typically be counted on to reduce the deficit, a new Congressional Budget Office report shows that the federal government spent $895 billion more over the past 11 months than it took in. That’s a 33 percent increase from last year. This is the result of massive tax cuts combined with dramatic increases in spending and inaction on entitlements.

“Trillion-dollar annual deficits are going to be the new normal. The money being borrowed to pay for this bender will eventually need to be repaid — with interest. Yet House Republicans are talking this week about a second round of tax cuts that could cost another $2 trillion over the next decade. Privately they admit they’re doing this to score political points against Democrats in an election year. They know that there won’t be support in the Senate to make last year’s reductions of individual rates permanent because there won’t be 60 votes.

“Notably, lawmakers are facing no discernible political blowback this fall for such risky fiscal policies. Perhaps this is because people are on a sugar high made possible by what’s essentially a stimulus. Or maybe it’s because unemployment is low and stock prices are high.

“Another factor: The American people are more focused on the daily drama emanating from the reality television presidency than they are substantive policy issues. Meanwhile, the administration is making meaningful moves every day — and we’re covering them — but these stories are often overlooked in favor of distracting shiny objects. This week has already offered several fresh illustrations of this dynamic.

“– President Trump got a lot of attention for using the anniversary of the Sept. 11 attacks to launch a fresh round of dubious attacks on the Justice Department via Twitter. Picking up a claim from Rep. Mark Meadows (R-N.C.), Trump accused former FBI officials Peter Strzok and Lisa Page of employing a “media leak strategy” to undermine him. Then he blamed the bureau and DOJ for not doing anything about it. “The claim from Meadows is debatable,” Matt Zapotosky reports. “Strzok’s attorney said his client’s reference to a ‘media leak strategy’ was an effort to stem unauthorized disclosures of information.”