How do you finally get both parties to agree on a federal budget bill? That’s easy. Just give everybody everything they want.

You probably wouldn’t employ that as a spending strategy for Christmas, no matter how happy it would make members of your household. But members of Congress just did it to … well ... each other.

When special interests get what they want, they support politicians who gave it to them. And when pet projects are approved, politicians can brag to their constituents, which often translates into votes.

But when the economy goes south, average Americans will be the ones holding the bag.

Nevermind that now, however. The economy is roaring. No one wants to be a Debbie Downer. No one wants to point to the $23 trillion national debt growing quickly behind the curtain.

As our editorials frequently chide lawmakers for not compromising on important legislation, we are sensitive to accusations of hypocrisy when it comes to criticizing the funding bills the House and Senate sent to the president last week — bills that keep the government from either shutting down right before Christmas or metaphorically kicking the can down the road once again.

This was, after all, a display of bipartisanship. The House passed the package, 280-138. The  Senate did it by a more emphatic 81-11. And they did this in the middle of a highly divisive impeachment process.

But let’s be real. This deal is akin to a husband and wife agreeing to solve their household debt problems by acquiring another credit card.

Once upon a time — 2011, to be exact — Republicans insisted on austerity, believing that runaway debt was bad for the nation. They had enough support that Barack Obama signed the Budget Control Act, which put spending controls in place in exchange for an increase in the debt ceiling. 

Today the people of Washington would be wise to head for higher ground ahead of a flood of new spending. 

To be specific, this package appropriates $1.4 trillion between now and September of 2020, representing a 16% increase since Donald Trump was elected. Everyone gets something. Specifically, the president gets $1.375 billion for construction of a border wall, along with greater leeway in how that money can be spent. Republicans also get a $22 billion increase in military spending.

On the other side, Democrats get a pay raise for federal workers, funding for research on gun violence and an increase in the federal minimum smoking age from 18 to 21.

Both sides get extensions on tax breaks for various special interests. 

Senate Appropriations Committee Chairman Richard Shelby, a Republican from Alabama, didn’t exhibit a hint of irony as he said, “All in all, these bills accommodate countless member priorities on both sides of the aisle.”

Indeed, they do. And with the package totaling 2,300 pages, it qualifies as something Congress had to pass in order to really know what it contains.

Despite the current giddy atmosphere, economies still travel in cycles. Good times won’t last forever, just as a ballooning national debt can’t be sustainable to infinity. 

When the day of reckoning comes, bipartisan agreements such as these will be seen as they truly are — good for politicians (at least in the short run), but bad for the American people.