Obviously, less than $40 billion in cuts is just a piece of seaweed in the vast ocean of federal spending. Everyone can talk about how big a single-year spending reduction this is, but spending is now so high that what wouuld have been historic even a decade ago is almost trivial now. That said, it may well have been the best deal Republicans could have gotten from an Obama White House and Reid-led Democratic Senate. Maybe more concessions could have been extracted if there was a shutdown. Or maybe this allows the Republicans to live again and fight another day.