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By Randy Hall | | October 1, 2013 | 2:23 PM EDT

During his Monday briefing with reporters in the White House, press secretary Jay Carney was asked several times how president Barack Obama would respond to a partial government shutdown. The most interesting query came from Cable News Network's senior White House correspondent Jim Costa, who asked if the Democrats have been using heightened rhetoric to attack Republicans and “trying to taunt” the GOP into doing a shutdown.

“In the last couple of weeks, Democrats including the president have -- and he has not used all these words but I’ll throw out some of them -- have referred to Republicans as arsonists, anarchists, extortionists, blackmailers, hostage takers,” Acosta noted. Even Dan Pfeiffer, assistant to the president and senior advisor to the president for strategy and communications, “talked about bombs being strapped to chests.”

By Ken Shepherd | | October 1, 2013 | 1:20 PM EDT

Michelle Cottle is no fan of Republicans and certainly not of Tea Party conservatives. But in a sign that some liberal journalists are worried that Democrats may overreach with their alarmist rhetoric, the Daily Beast staffer called on Democrats to cool it a bit with the hyper-partisan invective during the government shutdown. To Cottle, it's okay to call conservatives hijackers and terrorists and kamikaze pilots, so long as you keep the slurs "generic" and not, for example, compare Republicans to actual real-life villains like Bashar al-Assad and the Ayatollah.

From Cottle's October 1 piece, "Please Don’t Compare House Republicans to Iran or Syria, OK?" (emphasis mine):

By Scott Whitlock | | October 1, 2013 | 12:54 PM EDT

 All three networks on Tuesday morning hyped the partial government shutdown with reports from closed museums in Washington D.C. and live shots of the Statue of Liberty. The journalists of ABC's Good Morning America informed Americans that Republicans would probably "blink first" in the stand-off with the White House and congressional Democrats.

NBC's Peter Alexander checked in live from Washington, touting the "4200 workers at the Smithsonian museums and the National Zoo." He narrated, "We're now here in front of the National Air and Space Museum. They tell me last week they had 88,000 visitors come here. Today it'll be zero, the door's are locked." Alexander added, "And there's a very simple message posted to that front door, it reads, 'We apologize for the inconvenience.'" [See video below. MP3 audio here.]

By Matthew Sheffield | | October 1, 2013 | 12:25 PM EDT

Even as Politico and others are urging the public to overlook some of the many flaws in the Obamacare health insurance exchanges which just opened up today, MSNBC anchor Mara Schiavocampo is not playing along with the spin game.

Earlier this morning on “MSNBC Live,” Schiavocampo took viewers along with her as she filed a report on her experience trying to sign up for an exchange. It was an exercise in frustration as she soon found.

By Tom Blumer | | October 1, 2013 | 11:47 AM EDT

Michelle Malkin's Twitchy.com has capsulized the Obamacare exchanges' opening day as follows (links are in the original): "HealthCare.gov tried to kick off the Obamacare marketplace this morning … and failed miserably. The website is an error-ridden mess and users are being asked for their patience as the marketplace works out “known issues” with security. But never mind the pesky bugs preventing people from signing up — HealthCare.gov is psyched!"

On the pretty safe assumption that the problems continue, three key questions arise. First, how much exposure will the establishment press give the snafus? Second, to the extent they give them attention, how will they present them — i.e., as "normal startup problems" or "poor execution and planning"? And third, how effective, if at all, will center-right truth-tellers be at breaking through to the general population? Hadas Gold and Kyle Cheney at Politico obsessed over these matters Saturday morning, and in essence virtually begged everyone to be patient (bolds are mine):

By Noel Sheppard | | October 1, 2013 | 11:32 AM EDT

White House press secretary Jay Carney appeared on MSNBC’s Morning Joe Tuesday expressing the typical doom and gloom about what the government shutdown means to Americans and the economy.

After he was done, CNBC’s Michelle Caruso-Cabrera told the MJ crew about how the markets were shrugging off the shutdown due to its likely limited impact on the economy and punctuated her thoughts by saying, “Jay Carney’s been fear mongering on your network” (video follows with transcript and commentary):

By NB Staff | | October 1, 2013 | 11:02 AM EDT

Today's starter topic: The partial government shutdown has begun and the world has not ended. Gallup also has an interesting look at how past budget standoffs have not really affecting polling that much. One interesting note, however, is that the president has higher polling numbers than the Congress and therefore has more to lose in the event of a continued lack of compromise.

By Kaitlin Hamer | | October 1, 2013 | 10:44 AM EDT

Episode two and “Mom” is already too raunchy for its own good. The episode started with a positive teen pregnancy test and continued with multiple uncalled for sexual references that did not advance the plot whatsoever. It included uncomfortable references to an older man having sex with a teenage girl, casual conversation about the intimate parts of a sexual

By Matt Hadro | | October 1, 2013 | 10:42 AM EDT

On CNN Tuesday, Politico's Roger Simon slammed the "extreme right-wing" for using "food as a political weapon," for taking the GOP "hostage," and for denying "health care to 11 million people" in favor of a shutdown.

"The extreme right-wing of the Republican Party has taken that party hostage, at least in the House of Representatives," Simon ranted. He summarized their current position on the shutdown: "[W]e would rather shut down the government than extend health care to 11 million people."

By Geoffrey Dickens | | October 1, 2013 | 10:26 AM EDT

With the ObamaCare exchanges set to take effect today, and polls showing the President’s health care law as unpopular as ever (a September 25 poll from CBS News/New York Times found 51% “somewhat” or “strongly” disapproved of the law), the Big Three (ABC, CBS, NBC) news networks have been reluctant to report the multiple fiascos surrounding its implementation:

■ On July 2 and 3, all three broadcast networks covered the one-year postponement of the ObamaCare employer mandate as a “surprising,” “significant setback” for the President. But that was it for major coverage of that delay — apart from a few passing mentions in other stories, after July 3 the networks only discussed the employer mandate delay on the Sunday talk shows.

By Lauren Laster | | October 1, 2013 | 10:23 AM EDT

The title suggests masculinity and possibly a caveman quality. Instead we get what’s “more like a way station for guys who just got divorced, dumped, or are otherwise incapable of buying their own couch.”

By Noel Sheppard | | October 1, 2013 | 10:21 AM EDT

Chris Matthews just can’t make up his mind about Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Tx.).

After telling MSNBC’s Morning Joe crew last week that the Texas Tea Partier is “a problem for our republic,” Matthews on Tuesday said, “I think Ted Cruz is brilliant. I think the President’s met his match in this guy” (video follows with transcript and commentary):

By Lauren Laster | | October 1, 2013 | 10:15 AM EDT

If you’re new to The Good Wife, you’ve picked a good place to join us. Season five hit the ground running with a new governor and a new firm. The season four cliffhanger about whether or not Alicia will leave Lockhardt Gardner to join Cary is immediately answered—Florrick Agos will be up and running in the next few weeks. Now that we’ve established Cary and Alicia

By Noel Sheppard | | October 1, 2013 | 9:36 AM EDT

For weeks Americans have been told that if Congress and the White House didn't agree to a Continuing Resolution to fund the government when the new fiscal year started on October 1, an economic calamity would befall the nation.

Well, the government officially shut down at midnight Monday, and markets all around the world don't seem to care.

By Tim Graham | | October 1, 2013 | 8:42 AM EDT

Washington Post reporter Karen Tumulty tweeted on Tuesday morning: “Once again, NY Daily News (Remember “Cry Baby”?) goes for the iconic #shutdown cover.” As in 1995, the Daily News is mudslinging at a GOP House Speaker during a shutdown.

“HOUSE OF TURDS,” said the cover, as Speaker John Boehner seems to sit in Abe’s chair at the Lincoln Memorial with something dark dripping from his hands. Blood? Feces? The caption over this “photo illustration” slammed Boehner and the Tea Party: