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From The Atlantic, Derek Thompson writes the GOP might lose the shutdown battle, but it already won the spending war:

Republicans have, in the last two terms, masterfully whittled down federal spending, often with precisely this form of brinksmanship.The Senate bill funds the 2014 government at a level 18 percent below the president proposed five years ago; 17 percent below the Democratic Congress proposed four years ago; 10 percent below Paul Ryan and Republicans proposed three years ago; and 8 percent below the debt ceiling compromise two years ago (see graph, via Michael Linden and Harry Stein). The Senate bill is less than 2 percent away from Paul Ryan’s own 2014 budget.
The Austerity Caucus has won the biggest fights in Washington since 2010, and now, having achieved the fastest-shrinking deficits since demobilization after World War II