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GOP destruction is worse than America realizes

Please forgive me for what I'm about to do.

A few weeks ago a good friend of mine left Washington, D.C., where he'd been working as a lawyer for a few years, and returned to California, where he now practices. He's surrounded by highly educated people. And yet he wrote me this week to boast, "You know what's nice? Nobody is discussing the looming government shutdown. It's just not on anybody's radar."

If he weren't a news junky, it probably wouldn't be on his either.

I normally can't stand it when writers use their conversations with friends, waiters, clipboard people or whomever else to draw sweeping insights about big things like politics, America and the world. So apologies for going a little Tom Friedman on you. At least I didn't invoke any of my cab drivers, none of whom ever seem to mention the debt limit.

Anyhow I bring this up because I do think it's illustrative. And I think it speaks to a hidden danger for Republicans, who already know these antics are more politically damaging to them than they are to Democrats. A lot of people around the country, not just in coastal California, have no idea that the GOP is about to harm the economy all over again, like it did in 2011, against its leaders' better judgment. But they're about to find out.

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