Well, it looks like DC lawmakers will pull off an 11th-hour rescue to avoid an embarrassing debt-ceiling lapse, so calamity averted? Not quite, writes Timothy Garton Ash in the UK's Guardian. "Politically, in the eyes of the world, the 'full faith and credit' of the US has been further eroded," he argues. This erosion has been happening for a while now, he adds, but most Americans are probably unaware because US journalism is so caught up in the ESPN-like coverage of the daily political battles that it rarely provides an outside perspective.
"America should do a reverse Columbus," he writes. "The world no longer needs to discover America; but America urgently needs to discover the world's view of America." Networks like the new al-Jazeera America are helping, but Garton Ash thinks some "public-spirited American billionaire" should fund a mainstream channel devoted to helping US citizens understand how their country is viewed around the world. Click for the full column. (Read more government shutdown stories.)