Media doing their job when it comes covering ObamaCare?

This is a rush transcript from "The Five," October 9, 2013. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.


Well, brand-new developments on the outrageous story that the U.S. government wasn't paying death benefits to American servicemen who have died or been killed. That's coming up next.

But, first, at this hour, the president is meeting with Democrats from the House in the first of a series of new talks with lawmakers from both houses of Congress on both sides of the aisle. Finally.

His approval numbers are in the tank. A brand-new poll has him at 37 percent. And confidence in the president is dropping despite the fact that many in the media are in his back pocket.

Listen to this softball from a "Huffington Post" reporter yesterday.


SAM STEIN, HUFFINGTON POST: Speaker Boehner, so far, unwilling to hold a vote on clean C.R., what assurances can you give to those affected by the shutdown who are concerned about an even longer impasse? And how worried are you permanently that your preferred solution to this is clean C.R. sequestration levels may do harm to the nation's economy and your second-term agenda?

BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Well, Sam, you're making an important point.


TANTAROS: Thanks, Sam. No, really. Thank you, Sam.

Not exactly adversarial, huh? Well, here's Brit Hume's take on that.


BRIT HUME, FOX NEWS SR. POLITICAL ANALYST: There's a long tradition among network correspondents who cover the White House of asking presidents of both parties challenging questions. No network correspondents -- network TV correspondents were called on today. And then they went to a bunch of print journalists, all of whom for some reason, we're told (ph), way late in the news conference, asked very mild questions.


TANTAROS: So, it is a bit strange.

Dana, a lot of these mainstream outlets as well have been friendly to President Obama, but he sidestepped them yesterday. Smart move?

DANA PERINO, CO-HOST: Well, I think that a lot of reporters right before a press conference, they'll talk a big game before the press conference. And they'll strut their stuff down the hallway about how they're going to ask the president this or that. Then they get in the room.

And what I found is that even though questions can be hard-edged, they're typically fairly respectful. That type of question that you saw just there, I don't remember ever getting one kind of like that. Thank you so much for asking, you know, if I would have asked that question, I would have just asked it in that way.

ERIC BOLLING, CO-HOST: In fact, I did ask that question. Thank you for reading it.

PERINO: And I love your stuff, love it. I just love your writing.

I think that reporters are somewhat intimidated when the president comes in the room. I don't understand why, in the sixth year of a presidency, that is the case. He's been in the briefing room several times and doesn't even take their questions. It is an interesting move to decide to use a television medium to go into the White House press briefing room and then not call on anybody from any of the TV networks and it's just a way that they decide to do things at the White House.

TANTAROS: Could it be also, Greg, that he looked at his polling? Thirty-seven percent. That's pretty low.

So, this could be a deliberate strategy with his numbers the lowest that we've seen them I think in this second term.

GREG GUTFELD, CO-HOST: The only person less popular than Barack Obama is Barack Hussein Obama. You know what's great is Sam -- you see Sam Stein and Obama, it's like the battle of the beta males. That actually was a challenge. It was like a little war between the two, who could be, I don't know, more beta-y.

The only reason why they chose him apparently was because Michelle was busy and they were worried Malia would be too critical.

TANTAROS: And Bo can't talk.

GUTFELD: Yes, Bo can't talk.


GUTFELD: Or can he?

BOLLING: So, Ands, I believe the number is 11 questions were asked.


BOLLING: Not one of them -- the only really important question that was out there that was never asked, President Obama, you want the Republicans to agree to raising the debt ceiling, but in 2006 as a Senator Obama, you voted against raising it. Why? And in 2008, you called George Bush dangerous and unpatriotic to the country.

None of the 11 people who stood up there could ask the $64,000 question overhanging the Obama presidency. No one --

BOB BECKEL, CO-HOST: No one has the $64,000 question?

BOLLING: I would say so, yes.

BECKEL: I can answer it for you.


BOLLING: You're either a hypocrite or you're --

BECKEL: A candidate for president.

TANTAROS: Bob, the $63,000 question also is about ObamaCare, and he didn't get one about the flawed exchanges and the technical glitches. Not one yesterday.

BECKEL: Well, yes, that's right. Let me just say one thing about this. Greg said he's the most unpopular guy. There's one more unpopular which is Speaker Boehner and the Republicans in the House.

You know, the fact is we had an election. You lost. And you have another election, maybe you win, maybe you lose. But they're acting as if somehow they've been given the right here to disrupt the American government and disrupt the American people because they didn't get what they wanted. Well, take their crying towels and go home. I mean --

GUTFELD: Bob, other people won elections, too, and their job is to do what the constituents want. That's what they're doing.

BECKEL: (INAUDIBLE) the government?

GUTFELD: Well, remember, it was Obama who actually made changes to the bill that wasn't constitutional. So I don't know what you're talking about.

BECKEL: I know -- well, the fact of the matter is --

PERINO: Here's the thing, Bob, just on top of the block which is the media coverage. I do think that in a lot of ways the administration seems -- they're surprised by tough questions. They get them, they get very offended, and it doesn't help them.

And all of a sudden you see -- the amount of interviews that President Obama has granted is inversely proportional to his approval rating. So you would think -- if the media were actually a little bit tougher on him in the interviews, maybe they would realize -- or they wouldn't be so surprised by the fact that they're now in the mid-30s.

TANTAROS: John Boehner has made a good point. He's pushing for a delay in the individual mandate because employers got one, so he's talking about fairness.

Why hasn't the administration, beside Kathleen Sebelius, on "The Daily Show" by Jon Stewart gotten a similar question? And Sean Duffy, a Republican from Wisconsin, asked Andrea Mitchell that asked question.


REP. SEAN DUFFY (R), WISCONSIN: All we've asked for is that the president and the administration join us in ObamaCare, the American people and Congress, and that individuals and families are treated just like big business. That's what they're holding out for and I think --

ANDREA MITCHELL, MSNBC: Congressman, you're asking him -- that's a nonnegotiable demand.

DUFFY: That's nonnegotiable? Come on. The media won't even ask the question about, why are you treating families different than big businesses? You need Jon Stewart on Comedy Central to ask Secretary Sebelius, hey, why won't you treat these two equally, and she can't answer it.

I mean, that's how pathetic I think news reporting has become when we won't ask tough questions to the administration.

MITCHELL: We've asked questions to both sides. That's not fair.

DUFFY: No one's asked that question but Jon Stewart. I think the media should start doing its job.


TANTAROS: Greg, what would the media do without this shutdown? Imagine if it were just the implementation of ObamaCare, would they be able to get away with not covering it at all?

GUTFELD: Well, that's -- I mean, that is their excuse right now. They're saying the reason -- the Republicans screwed up because of the shutdown. If we didn't have the shutdown, everybody would be focusing on this catastrophe.

There might be some truth to that, but I happen to believe you can cover both, and I think it's a lousy excuse. But maybe they're right.

Look, President Obama does not care about his popularity. He's not going for another election. Do you think Brian Austin Green cares about his popularity? No. He's got Megan Fox.

And ObamaCare is Obama's Megan Fox. You can hate him all you want, but he has this crowning achievement, as awful as it is, for a hardcore left-wing progressive, ObamaCare is the greatest achievement you could ever have.

TANTAROS: Megan Fox is so much hotter than ObamaCare.

GUTFELD: In his mind --

BECKEL: What do you consider -- I assume you consider "USA Today" sort of mainstream media.

GUTFELD: Not really.

BECKEL: Don't? Well, let's assume that most people do.

GUTFELD: I still don't.

BECKEL: And they yesterday beat the hell out of Obama on ObamaCare.

I mean, I've not seen a whole lot of -- "The Huffington Post" question was clearly a puff question, no question about that, but I haven't seen the media be so kind to Obama.

BOLLING: Look what Andrea Mitchell just said. Andrea Mitchell, who spent decades covering the White House, decades, right, says to a U.S. congressman -- no, congressman, applying the individual mandate delay the way they applied the employer mandate is nonnegotiable.

How does she know that? She's not in Congress. She's not -- she's not behind closed doors making these deals.

Does she work for the White House? Does she know that that's nonnegotiable? Does she know that Obama's not saying, we'll maybe do this, but let's hold out, see what we can negotiate prior, and then we'll give it.

How does she know, Bob? And if she doesn't know, why wouldn't she ask that question?

BECKEL: Am I wrong or did Obama say that was nonnegotiable?

BOLLING: I don't know that he said --

PERINO: He also said he wouldn't vote for the debt ceiling increase in 2006 and 2008 and he changes his position on a lot of things.

BECKEL: Yes, but that was presidential politics. That was just --

PERINO: You know, of course you say no in a negotiation up until the point that you say yes. And of course, on the individual mandate, that is actually -- if the glitches continue to be as bad and as catastrophic a failure as it has seemed up to date, and I gave them a pass last week. I said let's see how it goes. Software glitches can be fixed.

But I think the Republicans hit upon something that was very good today, and Speaker Boehner started to press the issue. If individuals are having such a hard time logging onto the system and getting enrolled and getting their benefits and their insurance all taken care of, if they're unable to do that, then for the good of the people, the good of the country, can't we just delay this for one year instead of threatening Americans with being fined for the government's own incompetence?

BECKEL: You know what's amazing to me is the press hasn't picked up on this -- nobody yet. There's a deal in the works here. It's going to get done. It's going to get done by the 17th.

You can just pick up the tea leaves and being back in Washington for the first time in Washington yesterday, having a chance to talk to a few people, I mean, it's just --

TANTAROS: If that's because -- and we have to bring up the sound, but Charles Krauthammer made this comment last night on "SPECIAL REPORT", that the president really does fear the debt ceiling. Take a listen.


CHARLES KRAUTHAMMER, FOX NEWS CONTRIBUTOR: He's really afraid of that debt ceiling. He says he won't bend on this. Of course, he'll have to at the 11th hour. He can't afford to be remembered as the first president who defaulted or allowed, you know, a condition to which it can happen.


BECKEL: You know, he's right about that. Most reasonable sane people are worried about the debt ceiling and the catastrophic outcome except for clearly the right-wing Republicans who don't seem to care one way or another.

But there is a deal here. And Charles is right in this sense. I think taking it up to the 17th for Obama, the pressure's going to build on him. I think there is going to be a deal. He's going to give Boehner something that he can take back to his caucus and declare a victory. It will be minimal, and they'll go on.

And maybe it's a short-term deal, maybe it's eight months -- eight weeks, rather, but it will be a deal.

GUTFELD: We knew this was going to happen, though. We knew this months ago. This is the ideological equivalent of pro wrestling.

The script was already written. We knew how this was going to end. The debt ceiling debate, though -- you have to make, the benefit of this debt ceiling debate, it is the only time when you can really negotiate.

It's like politicians are like college students. They wait until the night before the final. And then they load up on Adderall and they work all night. And that's how it works, but they always get it done, correct? It's never happened.

BECKEL: Pay 35 bucks for that Adderall, man, it does keep you up all night.

TANTAROS: By the way, Greg, I did not know that Randy "Macho Man" Savage was going to race in to save Hulk Hogan against Andre the Giant in Wrestlemania, that's not fair.

GUTFELD: It's not fair.


BOLLING: You know, for the second time in that press conference and also earlier today when President Obama was bringing Janet Yellen up for confirmation to chair the Fed, he said something that just kind of resonated in my brain a few times. It's just so disingenuous for you to do this, sir.

He said I've cut the deficit. I've cut the deficit in half. He said that. He said it a few times the last couple of weeks.

Here's what he's done. Here's the real numbers. The last year of President Bush's term, the deficit was $459 billion. We were spending $459 billion less than we were taking in.

President Obama brought the deficit up to an annual deficit of $1.4 trillion. Now, it's coming back down to about $750 billion, OK? Bush/Obama.

BECKEL: You know, the deficit --

BOLLING: But it's so disingenuous to say I cut it from the high, which I created. It's like he's taking credit, but it's almost double what it was under George Bush.

BECKEL: He may well be doing that, but let's keep in mind that the deficit is the fiscal year October 1 to October 1. So, most of that year was in Obama's camp. And he did do deficit spending.

BOLLING: Stop it. That's not fair.

BECKEL: It is. October 1.

BOLLING: What do you do about the $1.3 trillion in 2010, $1.3 trillion in 2011 and $1.1 trillion in 2012.

BECKEL: What's it going to be this year?

BOLLING: Seven-fifty.

BECKEL: What was it in the first year?

BOLLING: Four-thirty-nine when they left office -- when Bush left office.

BECKEL: What was the first year for Obama?

BOLLING: One-point-four.

BECKEL: Well, he cut it in half, didn't he?

BOLLING: No. He cut his own deficit in half.

BECKEL: Well, whatever. Deficits are deficits.

BOLLING: It's like raising your price 100 percent and taking 20 percent off and saying hey, we're going to have a sale tomorrow.

PERINO: Like a bag of potato chips when they say there's 20 percent more free, but they really just shrunk the bag.

GUTFELD: I was going to say, when you buy a half gallon of ice cream and you brag that you only ate half of it.

TANTAROS: You know, I looked at the polling over the last about six months since the IRS scandal broke, and that really looks like it was the tipping point for President Obama's numbers. They've been on a downslide since.

I wonder why Republicans don't rally around some kind of legislation, a taxpayer bill of rights, something against the IRS -- stripping the IRS of having the mandate, to collect those fines for ObamaCare. That is to me political gold for Republicans, kryptonite for Democrats. Imagine if someone in the Republican Party would propose that or Boehner would get behind that.

Let President Obama defend the IRS. I think that should be what they do after they get this debt ceiling deal.

BECKEL: It's an interesting idea except that the Republicans in the Congress are perceived to be worse than Attila the Hun. I mean --

TANTAROS: You actually like that idea.


BECKEL: I think that's not a bad idea, but I don't think the Republicans can carry anything. I don't think they can carry water.

TANTAROS: I think they could.

BOLLING: How do the Democrats in Congress poll?

BECKEL: They're terrible.

BOLLING: Terrible, yes.

BECKEL: Not quite as terrible as Republicans.

TANTAROS: They would win with that idea.

GUTFELD: The number one story that we were doing for two weeks was the IRS story which got blown out of the water by a number of other scandals, too many scandal balls in the air. And I do believe conservative Republicans let that thing get away the same way they let Benghazi get away, and Fast and Furious because he's able to keep pushing a new problem in front of us.

BOLLING: But that one's coming back.


BOLLING: If Drudge -- there was a headline in Drudge.

TANTAROS: That's why the Republicans need to bring it back.

GUTFELD: It was the White House. They actually tied it from the IRS to the White House.

BECKEL: Who did that? Who did that?

TANTAROS: They need to tie the debt ceiling or the shutdown to the IRS. I think that would be PR gold, and political gold.

Up next, will the grieving families of the service men and women who have died for our country get the respect and help that they deserve? This big story you've all been following. We have an update on a very shameful suspension of death benefits for America's bravest. We'll have that for you.

And later, "The Five" was down in Washington yesterday for a very special event honoring our very dear friend, Bob Beckel. It was such a wonderful night. We'll tell you about it a little bit later. So stay tuned.



PERINO: All right, thank you, Shep.

Welcome back to "The Five".

The U.S. soldiers creed calls for no one to be left behind. And when the unfortunate occasion of a military death occurs, the American government owes the same loyalty to the fallen's family.

Since the shutdown began on October 1st, 26 service members have died, leaving 26 grieving military families without death benefits. And this has created righteous anger and confusion. Listen to this.


COL. OLIVER NORTH: This isn't about the government shutdown. It's about whether the commander-in-chief gives a damn about the morale of our troops. It does not take an act of Congress to authorize this travel by the dependence of the families of our dead or our wounded. All it takes is a commander-in-chief with a conscience.

SHANNON COLLINS: For the sacrifice that our kids are making at the age that they're making them, I don't understand how this can be a benefit that's withheld. I will not -- I won't ever understand it.


PERINO: And today, White House Press Secretary Jay Carney was pressed about the commander-in-chief's role in this delay.


REPORTER: How could there not have been a decision made that if there's anything that's essential, it would be taking care of those who lost loved ones in the field of battle?

JAY CARNEY, WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: I mean, again, if you want an editorial -- commander-in-chief, when he found out that this was not addressed, he directed that a solution be found. These benefits were not explicitly dealt with in the Pay Our Military Act. He was very disturbed and he asked for the OMB and his lawyers to take action.

ED HENRY, FOX NEWS CHIEF WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: So why didn't he have that action taken for today, though?

CARNEY: Because we'd have to work out a process, unless you're willing to write the check, Ed.


PERINO: Interesting answer.

OK, it should be noted that just this afternoon a private charity, which is called the Fisher House, it does amazing work all over the country. It has agreed to pick up the tab until the Department of Defense gets its spending issues straightened out.

Fair or unfair to blame the White House and the president for not catching this in the Military Pay Act?

BOLLING: I think it's very fair. I think it also proves that America is bigger and better than the clowns representing us in D.C. where Fisher House has to come in and pick up the tab to fly these people back.

The other thing is, 26 service members have died in the last nine days in Afghanistan of where -- I guess both, overseas. Can we just pull back now? Can we let those people who hate us anywhere are going to hate us the day we leave? Can we just get out already?

Enough is enough. Honestly. I'm all for finishing things off and all, but come on. It's going on 13 years now. Our 13th year.

BECKEL: The key here was the $100,000 death benefit that goes to the families to have them holdover until they get their permanent money. That would -- is included in the Defense Authorization Bill. The bill that the House of Representatives passed did not include that money.

So, it is not President Obama alone here. It's the White House who forgot somehow to include that.

BOLLING: I said the bozos representing us --


BOLLING: I didn't necessarily hang it on Obama.

BECKEL: So, now, Obama never should have signed the thing without it in it. He should have known that. Somebody should have pointed it out. But the House never should have passed it had without having those benefits put in there.

And the fact that these supposed so strong military types in the Republican Congress forget to put that in is to me shocking.

PERINO: Well, the good news is, here's something that all Americans can agree on -- service members should get the pay they're due. They're going to get it thank you to the Fisher House for stepping in.

GUTFELD: But this is an amazing lesson for anybody who is interested in philosophy of government. It shows that big government by nature is inhuman. It's a one-size-fits-all monstrosity that looks at widows and looks at healthy 26-year-olds as no different. So, if you're a 26-year-old playing Xbox, you get universal health care. But if you're a dead soldier, you don't get funds because it's an inhuman machine.

A small agile government, state government, doesn't make these mistakes. It only makes its mistakes when it becomes a greedy, disgusting monolith that sucks everything you have and then becomes so selfish that it just spits it out arbitrarily all over the country.

TANTAROS: Well, this time we caught it.

GUTFELD: That made sense.

TANTAROS: We caught it.

BECKEL: Not really.

TANTAROS: Unfortunately. But what if it's health care? What if it's ObamaCare? The same people that absent-mindedly forgot are the same ones that are going to be in charge of ObamaCare.

And, you know, you say you're not supposed to leave someone behind. How about the four soldiers in Benghazi? How about leaving them behind?

I mean, the commander-in-chief that night, we still don't know exactly what he was doing. And so now in this situation, we have the private sector come into play, bailing out the American people, and I just don't understand why. This boggles the mind.

The minute the president found out about this, why didn't he do something? Jay Carney says he went to his lawyer. This is a president that loves the news camera. Why wouldn't President Obama, the most powerful man in the world, try and do something? It's like he never misses an opportunity to miss an opportunity. Every time.

PERINO: One of the things, Eric, that the House has done is passed several bills that would have the continuing resolution which is the bill that would continue to fund the government -- I'm sorry, allow for the veterans to be paid while the government is shut down. But that everyone should be able to agree that if we're doing this for the military families, that our veterans who serve should get the same.

But the Democrats -- Senate Democrats in the White House have said don't send that over because we won't sign it.

BOLLING: Right. And that's what we're dealing with. They only want -- Greg, pardon me, it's a clean resolution -- they only want the clean resolution. They don't want to attach this thing until you say look, there are four dead soldiers over there that need to be flown back and you can't fly them back until you at least vote on this. They have 435 in the House.

BECKEL: They won't pass an environmental protection bill --



BOLLING: Again, the way this works is take care of the most important things first. Pass it, get it through. Get the military funded. Get all that stuff funded and then start taking these things --

PERINO: One by one and let's prioritize.

BOLLING: Prioritize.

GUTFELD: Can I ask you a question, though, about something else? The parks service blocking things?


GUTFELD: Whether it's Old Faithful or Mt. Rushmore -- how is this actually legal? I mean, I understand, like, if a store is closing and you've got to leave the store. It's still legal to stand out in front of the store and stare at the store. And that store actually owns the property.

As far as I can tell, the parks service doesn't own this property. How can they block a view? Isn't that illegal? That's illegal.

PERINO: It's also really stupid. And because I've run out of time, I'm going to put a picture on Twitter that you guys are not going to believe about the Grand Tetons.

GUTFELD: We should have a giant staring contest. We should tell everybody to go to Mt. Rushmore right now and stare at it.



GUTFELD: At our stoned leaders.

PERINO: We're so glad you're back. I am really glad.

OK, coming up -- Pearl Jam front man Eddie Vedder takes an aim at gun owners with some heated remarks. We're going to tell you how the rock star threw himself head first into the gun-control debate. That is next on "The Five".


BOLLING: Pearl Jam "Ten" is one of the best rock albums, in my opinion. I've played many Pearl Jam songs in and out of my segment, but now I'm done with Vedder, no mas Pearl Jam. Eddie Vedder has a message for Second Amendment supporters like myself. He wants something bad to happen to us.

In a new interview, Vedder says, quote, "The fact that we're living in a country where 90 percent of the people want further gun laws to maybe somehow put a dent in some of this insanity that's happening, yet there's no further legislation, taking place. I get so angry that I almost wish bad things upon these people."

I wonder if Vedder would say that to the faces of any of the dozens of bodyguards who protected he and his band mates over the years, not to mention, there it is, my right to own and carry is the law of the land.

Greg, you were laughing during this setup.

GUTFELD: Well, no, I just like the way, "A," that Vedder says he almost wishes something bad happens to these people. He should send them his latest solo record.

I have a joke. What's the difference between Eddie Vedder and Kurt Cobain? Kurt Cobain can't sing because he's dead.



BOLLING: You don't like his vocals.

GUTFELD: His last hit was probably on a bong. I'm serious. "Ten"? That was a pretty good album.

But the Melvins are so much better. If you like Pearl Jam, screw Pearl Jam, listen to the Melvins.

BOLLING: All right. Your approach.

TANTAROS: I used to love Pearl Jam. They got me through a lot of tough adolescent years, when "Ten" came out. And I love "Versus." I disagree with Greg on that.

But they've been trashing gun owners for a long time. I remember this song right here, "Got a gun", here are the lyrics of "Glorified G", "Got a gun, in fact I got two. That's OK, man, because I love God. Glorified version of a pellet gun feels so manly when armed glorified version of a pellet gun."

That song is from a while ago, and it mocks gun owners like they're clinging to their guns and their religion. Where have I heard that before? Oh.

BECKEL: That guy was on acid when he did that. He's probably on acid when he talked here.

Does anybody really care? I don't agree with Vedder, but who cares what he says? I don't get it. He's an acid-blown old freak.

BOLLING: So let's do this. Let's move the gun debate --

PERINO: That's ironic.

BOLLING: In Colorado, remember last month, Colorado Senate president Jack Morse and Angela Giron (ph) who were recalled in a recall election last month. Now, there's a third one going up for recall and her name is State Senator Evie Holder (ph). Is that holder? So she's the third one. Now, if she gets recalled, the Colorado state senate will go from Democrat to Republican.

Dana, talk to us a little about how important the gun debate is going on in Colorado at least.

PERINO: I think it's an international trend. We talked yesterday about the 2014 elections and how the map historically does favor Republicans. There's a lot of red state Democrats who are going to face tough ones.

Interestingly, as Bob noted, that the Congress has a terrible reputation. The Republicans' brand is in the tank, nationally. However, at the state level and in the governorship, Republicans continue to win over and over again. Taking back Colorado would be the first step to getting that state back on track.

BOLLING: Bob, so here's how it goes. Even if they don't get this recall and the statehouse stays Democrat, isn't it a sign for everyone else out there who's thinking about hard about gun legislation, maybe they should back off a little bit?

BECKEL: Sure, I mean, it sends some fear through them. But let's keep in mind about the seat that she's holding. It was -- she won it barely in the general election, and that's because the vote was split with the libertarian candidate. So, it's not exactly what you would consider a blue seat. On the other hand, if this thing means that the Colorado Senate goes Republican, I will guarantee you there will be massive amounts of Democratic money being poured into that race to defend her on the recall, not because of her, because they don't want to seat to go. And I assume on the other side they will, too.

TANTAROS: I think Colorado is the front lines for fighting in 2014. Absolutely.

GUTFELD: Just to go back briefly to the -- I -- you should always support when somebody talks about a political issue if they have facts. And that's always been the problem. When you have a celebrity, he doesn't mention facts, only feelings.

I welcome Vedder to talk about guns, if he only knew something about them and he knew about the statistics going down and the majority of guns - - gun violence, it's suicide, and it's not these horrible tragedies that happen at schools. But you'll never hear that from a celebrity because it's too hard to read a book.

BOLLING: All right. Maybe they should read this book.

GUTFELD: That's a small book. Yes. Or your hands are huge.

BOLLING: Directly ahead, talk about the wussification of our youth, some middle school students are banned from playing basketballs and footballs during recess and cracking down on tag games, too. Smart move or safety at stake? Or is it turning our kids into pathetic adults?

The child's play debate is the next on "The Five".


GUTFELD: All right. Middle school in Port Washington, New York, has banned footballs, baseballs and soccer balls, those things. In case you don't know what they are. Plus stuff like tag and cartwheels will be under teacher supervision from now on.

Said a superintendent, quote, "Some of these injuries can unintentionally become very serious, so we want to make sure our children have fun but are also protected."

I agree. I think all brats should be cocooned in bubble wrap, then inserted into an egg-shaped polyurethane container where soy milk can be fed through a plastic straw. Then, when they turn 18 we can hatch them like baby chicks and eat them, because that's all they'll be good for.

In medicine, there's this thing called the hygiene hypothesis. That's a lack of childhood exposure to infectious stuff that boosts disease risk later. It's why some docs think playing in dirt is good for it helps build immunity. That's why I don't bathe.

I don't know if this is true with bacteria, but I'm thinking it's true for spines. Absurd efforts to shield kids from perceived risks like bruises or bullies creates weak adults, the kind who describe jokes as hurtful and words as insensitive -- insensitive meaning they become leftists.

Understanding risk is the only way to navigate it. And while head injuries are nothing to laugh at, it's the fragile mentality of the sheltered that's a joke. The only thing worse than a crying child is a whining adult, and that's the one area I know we're beating China in.

Don't have much time here.

Andrea, it's true, lots of kids head to the E.R. for head injuries. I actually had a head injury when I was young. I'm fine.

BECKEL: There's a surprise.

TANTAROS: That's why.

GUTFELD: Is that a reason to start pulling out all the balls?


GUTFELD: What are you thinking, Dana?

TANTAROS: Dana, your dirty mind again.

PERINO: I'm not thinking of anything. I'm just laughing.

BECKEL: See how far she's gone down?

TANTAROS: We've really corrupted her.

Do I think they should remove the balls? When I think back to my childhood, I was not covered in helmets and safety gear. I bet you weren't either. I bet no one at this table was, and we're all fun.

Now you look at little kids, they look like mini-terminators.


TANTAROS: I understand safety but I think they've taken it over the top. They also don't like winners. If you have a ball and you're playing a game, that means team. That means someone has to win.

Academia on the left doesn't like that. Everyone's the same. So you sit inside and you write poetry. That's the new thing.


BECKEL: Well, that was hurtful and insensitive on your part to say that about the left, because all the left doesn't believe that. I don't believe that you've got to have -- let them play with all the balls they want to play with, in school and out. I mean, I just don't think it's a big deal.

And that's why Dana -- look at Dana. She's still suffering from that comment.

TANTAROS: Sick. Sick, sick.

BOLLING: The metaphor is remove the balls. I guess if you go there, you realize that's what they're trying to do, but they're not really removing the balls. They replaced them with nerf balls.


BOLLING: Softer balls. They still get hurt with nerf balls.

BECKEL: This is set up for this stuff. Dana, there's no reason to sit there and feel funny about this because whenever you talk about balls like that, you're going to get a bad wrap --

PERINO: Rap, rap --


GUTFELD: Dana, you worry about your dog incurring any injuries when you play at the park.

PERINO: When he plays -- yes, I do. But I also know that, you know, he's able to play and roughhouse, that he's going to be a better dog for it.

GUTFELD: Yes, so true. Spoken like a dog parent.

All right. How did it end up in such a dark, strange place?

All right. Don't go away. When we come back, these guys will tell you about their trip to D.C. yesterday. Bob got an award and gave an inspirational speech. There he is -- about his battle with addiction.

The high-lights, next.



BECKEL: Alcoholism is a cunning and baffling disease, as we say. Alcoholics often begin our journey in the world of light where many of you live. Then, you find yourself drifting to the only place you can, which is to the dark world.

So, it comes a day when you finally decide you're sick and tired of being sick and tired. And you decide to seek help. In my case, I was fortunate enough to have the resources to go for Caron.

The day I left for Caron was the saddest day of my life. I couldn't have gotten here tonight if it hadn't been for Caron and for AA. I can't do it alone. No alcoholic can do it alone. And there are thousands of them out there tonight, and desperate to find the light.


BECKEL: Well, I was -- I really appreciate very much the work of Caron. I appreciate that "The Five" went to Washington to do the show, and those of you who went to be with me last night. My two children were there which was very important to me, and my ex-wife, by the way, who bore the brunt of my worst years and I appreciate her doing that.

It was a moving night. They raised a lot of money to help alcoholics and addicts who were not able to go to a place like Caron without their help. So, I want to thank you all for being there. It was quite a night.

PERINO: And your very good friend, Cal Thomas, also a FOX News contributor, and your co-columnist and co-author and co-speaker. His introduction of you was really good.

BECKEL: Yes, it was very good. He told a few stories. I wish he hadn't.

Now, there you all are, sitting there --

PERINO: There was no alcohol.

BECKEL: There was no alcohol -- did you figure out a way to get --

BOLLING: Porter and I ran across the street to the men's room at Bobby Van's for a couple of minutes and came back.

By the way, it was an honor to be sitting next to you. You did a fantastic job. That speech was spot on. Great job.

BECKEL: Thank you.

TANTAROS: Bob, I just want to say we're so proud of you. I think we're all so proud of you. Dana and I were bawling during your speech. You've got such great children.

You are such an inspiration to so many other struggling alcoholics. I didn't know this, but in Cal's introduction, you have been punched in the face, you've been thrown up on, you visited jails. You had a guy die in a car you were trying to help.

And one thing he said about you that's so important, he said you're a true friend. And the reason love you because you're genuine. And, Bob, you are. That's why we love you. You're the glue to the show. Thank you.

BECKEL: Thank you so much.

PERINO: Even if you are a left wing nut.


BECKEL: Unlike all the rest of us.

GUTFELD: Actually, his real problem, I don't care a single wit about Bob's addiction. I don't care. It's his left wingism that bothers me.

BECKEL: I understand that. But that's the addiction you better be careful around.

All right. "One More Thing" is up next.


TANTAROS: It's time now for "One More Thing." I'll kick it off.

I always liked rapper Nelly. But now I like him even more. Listen to what he had to say about the government during the shutdown and how it should stay out of his pockets if it's not going to work.


NELLY, HIP-HOP ARTIST: If the government's not working we shouldn't be paying taxes. Paying taxes is supposed to pay for the government which in turn is now working. So, if they're not working, I shouldn't have to pay taxes. And me being in the upper echelon of the tax bracket feel that the money I could be saving over these next couple days could be very vital to my survival.


TANTAROS: I agree.

PERINO: I like it.

TANTAROS: I agree.

That's what should go to the IRS, Republicans. Go after the IRS.

PERINO: You wanted to fire the government.

GUTFELD: Shouldn't the money be coming back to us? Me in particular?

TANTAROS: Roberto?

BECKEL: Well, keeping up with the music away from that dude. Today would have been the great John Lennon's 73rd birthday. He was born October 9, 1940. Here's one of my favorites, coming up, "Imagine."


BECKEL: He was a great man and we miss him.


BOLLING: We all don't.

TANTAROS: Speak for yourself.

BOLLING: Exactly. Anyway, so last night, this week, FOX kicked off the new prime time lineup. Last night, numbers are in. It's amazing. Congratulations, if you add the competition, add their numbers up, these guys beat them by 31 percent. Greta, Bill, Megyn and Sean, congratulations. You know, what, it's a good scrape to be part of that team.

PERINO: Well, they had a hell of a lead with the 5:00 p.m. show.

BOLLING: Absolutely.

TANTAROS: Hell of a lead in.


PERINO: OK, let's talk about the ridiculousness of some of the things the National Park Service is doing during the shutdown. There's some Native-American type animals that didn't like it. Look what these guys decided to do in the Grand Tetons Park, roll right over it --

BECKEL: Native-American animals?

PERINO: Yes, get it, Bob, they were here before? The American buffalo.

BECKEL: I see. I see.

PERINO: See, we could have said that video for "Red Eye", Greg, but I felt we should may be used it here.

GUTFELD: It's nice.

BECKEL: Are you doing "RED EYE" again?



GUTFELD: Banned phrase -- clean. Clean is supposed to be a good word. They're attaching it to clean continuing resolutions and clean bills. That doesn't means clean in a good way. That means unencumbered by reason.

It's stupid. Don't let them use it.

PERINO: It means more spending cuts.

GUTFELD: Yes, exactly. It means more and more bloated.

TANTAROS: What if you're a maid?

BECKEL: You've been that whole life, that word.

GUTFELD: By the way, that's the worst John Lennon song ever. I like John Lennon, "Imagine" is terrible.

BECKEL: Only because it's a good peace song that's why you can't stand it.


PERINO: What's the best one?

GUTFELD: It's not a peace song.

TANTAROS: That's it for us on "The Five". Thanks for watching, everybody. We'll see you tomorrow.

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