OK, let's talk about hitting the debt ceiling:
Firstly, anyone using the term "default" is blowing smoke. Default refers to refusing to pay our DEBTS, and only 6% of Federal spending goes to that whereas the government will still bring in 65-70% of what it spends.
That being said, the government will not be able to afford 30-35% of its expenditures, and will have to shut them down and pay in IOUs. This is currently happening w/ about 60% of government and while there are problems associated - there is NO CATASTROPHE; politicians' lying tantrums notwithstanding.
On the other hand, borrowing 30-35% of what we spend is irresponsible and unsustainable and demanding deficit reduction as a precondition of more borrowing makes perfect sense. I DO think the debt ceiling needs to be raised, but extending the unpaid holiday for special interests on the Federal payroll to bargain for efficiency is perfectly reasonable. Most of those special interests are sleazy corporate cartels and it's amazing how fast they call off their lobbyists when getting paid in IOUs; if you consider yourself a liberal, Democrat politicians lying to you that starving those corporations equals a crisis do NOT deserve your vote.