The pundits are tallying up the wins and losses in the federal government shutdown, which came to a merciful end, but won't stop the rancor between the parties.

I'm no expert, but it's hard to imagine anyone coming out of this mess and saying "We won!"

Federal employees of all kinds are able to go back to their jobs, notably those who found out in all this that they are considered to be "non-essential."

National parks and monuments are open, after some really bizarre situations where people who otherwise would stand up and defend the law wanted to open things up, even though the law said those places had to be closed. So Mount Rushmore, the Badlands, Wind Cave and Jewel Cave in South Dakota are open, too.

And can we say members of Congress, any of them, came out winners?

Was it rhetoric, an effort to make political points at the expense of the American people?

I guess we'll find out in mid-January if anybody learned anything.