The sequester began to commence Friday, with no deal in sight, and incendiary remarks exchanged between the president and congressional Republicans in the media.

A Washington Examiner editorial Thursday suggests that the president is not all that serious about governing because he was presented yesterday with options to make the sequester’s ‘arbitrary cuts’ less arbitrary, but he balked. Does that suggest he wants them to go through? Or that he’s trying to position himself as blameless and punish Republicans on the sequester politically?

AEI’s Jim Pethokoukis takes the notion that this is by design one step further, theorizing on NationalReview.com that the sequester is part of Obama’s end game for how he will handle the debt crisis moving forward: cut defense (sequester) and raise taxes (eventually) on the middle class, while praying for a slowdown in health-care spending.

On ‘Real News‘ Friday the panel discussed the sequestration news Friday, who’s to blame, and what cuts we are in store for: