For reasons that have never made any sense, conservative media have celebrated the government shutdown as a positive development, condemned the government shutdown as a Democratic disaster, and complained bitterly about the government shutdown affecting the World War II Memorial in Washington, D.C.
The cognitive dissonance has become so overwhelming, it's apparently affected some Fox News hosts' judgment in unhelpful ways.
Over the weekend, "Fox & Friends" complained that President Obama took the outrageous step of paying to keep the "museum of Muslim culture" open during the shutdown, even while the WWII memorial had to close. For those who can't watch clips online, here's what one Fox co-host told viewers:
"President Obama has offered to pay out of his own pocket for the museum of Muslim culture out of his own pocket, yet it's the Republican National Committee who's paying for this."
Before you get all-caps emails from your uncle who lives on conservative media, let's note a couple of relevant details. First, the RNC is not paying to keep the WWII memorial open; the National Park Service is accommodating war veterans who want to visit while we wait for Republicans to reopen the government.
Second, there is no "museum of Muslim culture" in Washington affected by the shutdown and the president isn't paying for the imaginary site to remain open. This originated as a joke on a satirical website, which the Fox host apparently heard about, without stopping to think, "Wait, there's something about this that doesn't sound right" before sharing the bogus story with viewers.
Of course, as Mike Burns added, "Fox has a history of passing off satirical stories as actual news."
Something to keep in mind that that all-caps email from your uncle arrives. Obama didn't destroy Reagan's childhood home; there's no such thing as "Friends of Hamas": ACORN no longer exists; "Skewed Polls" was dumb; Fast & Furious and Benghazi are not actual political scandals; the IRS didn't target conservatives; and Obama isn't paying to keep open a Muslim museum.