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Washington: City of Hate

The United States Capitol building and Constitution Avenue in Washington DC at night.

You wouldn't know these were boom times with the stock market at all-time highs and unemployment near all-time lows if you were in the nation's capital.

Washington, D.C., is a city of hate.

When you visit, it appears no one can stand each other. The two political sides are at each other's throats so constantly it's hard to imagine they sleep. Maybe they don't. And then there are the sides within the sides, always ready for more gnashing of teeth, mutual hostility, and endless contempt.

Talk about the cliché "can't stand prosperity" — that's what we have. If the boom goes on much longer and the economy becomes yet more successful, we'll be on the brink of a civil war. Only this time, it will be fought in Mercedes and Teslas. The richer we are, the more we despise each other.

And speaking of clichés, Truman's hoary "if you want a friend in Washington, get a dog" has never been more true. Only now, that dog's a Tibetan Mastiff with an estimated worth of $582,000, slurping leftover foie gras from some uber-pricey restaurant by José Andrés in the backyard of the most expensive real estate in the country. And yet they still hate.

The government shutdown — whatever that actually means other than yet another opportunity to blame whichever opposition for anything anyone ever did since the Paleolithic Age — is the most obvious sign of that enmity, but nothing shows it more than those same two sides lined up against each other on the question of the publication of "The Memo."