05/31/2013 03:15 pm ET Updated Jul 31, 2013

The Top 8 Things We Learned From the Sequester

This was going to be a Top 10 list but come on, the sequester wasn't that great a learning experience. Plus it just takes too much effort to think of 10 things.

Anyway, we did pick up a few pointers from mandated budget cuts about the type of nation we are and so here are the Top 8 things we learned:

8. The sequester of 1987 was so wildly unsuccessful that our leaders thought it was a good idea to try it again in 2013, just to prove a point.

7. The sequester is Obama's fault except that it was in response to Republican obstructionism except that the Democrats were spending way too much money except that Bush's lax policies that led to the financial crisis created the need for all that spending except that Clinton had set the tone for Bush by doing the same things.

6. Airplanes cannot land just because the pilot can see the runway. Air traffic controllers actually do something important.

5. Handing out Employee-of-the-Month plaques to FAA employees will not get them to work for free.

4. Growing pot will put you in the bad books of the IRS (this has nothing to do with the sequester but I was running out of ideas). Maybe if those IRS agents took some weed too, we would all be happier.

3. The only thing that scares politicians more than losing votes because of the sequester is actually doing some work to avoid losing those votes.

2. So few people care about touring the White House and visiting national parks that Washington, D.C. tourism actually went up after the sequester.

And the biggest lesson we learned from the sequester:

1. Apparently, 800,000 Department of Defense employees are so redundant that their being furloughed will not jeopardize our national security! (And if it will, why the hell isn't Chuck Hagel panicking?)

SANJAY SANGHOEE is a political and business commentator. He is a banker, has an MBA from Columbia Business School, and is the author of "Killing Wall Street". For more information, please visit