No one believes that our country can emerge from our current crisis without revision of our tax and spend policy. Spending, particularly on entitlements, has been a third rail for politicians for decades. Any attempt to limit spending (of almost any kind) immediately initiates a TV parade of the unfortunate that need government help.
That leaves taxation as the only alternative. One of the great advantages of the Democratic Party is that the benefits of the program of the day come first. The costs come second. Historically, "taxing the rich" and borrowing have shielded the middle class from the cost effects of government programs. Slow inflation bleeds wealth from the middle class, and the rich gain deductions and and credits to mitigate taxation losses. The electorate senses that this decades long game is nearing an end, and they are surely correct.
Greg Mankiw makes some simple calculations to demonstrate the potential for additional taxation. http://gregmankiw.blogspot.com/2010/03/taxes-per-person.html The prospects are poor. The needed taxation (20-30% overall increases) will surely cripple the competitiveness of the US economy. The ensuing decline in the US standard of living will pour more gasoline on the budding political firestorm.
The current political conflict is playing out in predictable ways. Democrats believe they can establish new spending and co-opt enough Republicans in the next election cycles to dramatically increase taxes to avoid financial collapse. Republicans are simply trying ride the backlash to political majorities with a vague, but unachievable plan to "rollback" recent Democrat legislation.
If the Tea Party successfully establishes a "limited" government theme, both major parties will suffer some disappointments.