The Independent Journal-Review is a terrible website that publishes the latest in headline-construction and viral-content-packaging technology in service of a conservative agenda. It is a sort of right-wing Upworthy? Sample headline: “Monuments Around the World Lit Up in Support of France. With One Glaring Exception …” (The exception is the White House.) The Independent Journal-Review is also, as of today, the largest conservative-politics fan-fiction site on the planet.
You might associate fan fiction — fictional stories written about characters, real or imagined, that the author did not personally come up with — with video-game characters exploring their sexuality. You wouldn’t be wrong, necessarily, but you’d be limiting yourself. One of the oldest fan-fiction communities is political opinion columnists on a deadline — a proud tradition continued on the IJ-Review site today by Kurt Schlichter, trial lawyer, author, and retired army colonel. His fan fiction, “What Defeating ISIS Would Look Like,” is a masterpiece of repressed slash, featuring a “young and usually quite calm” president who is the “Cuban-American son of immigrants” (which means he understands tyranny and … how to deal with it”) and an aggressive marine nicknamed “The Wildman”:
On a Florida golf course, the secure cell phone of the retired Marine everyone called “The Wildman” rang, ruining his putt. The Wildman was a legend for his aggression, hence his nickname. President Obama had naturally felt it necessary to replace him with a more pliable, passive CENTCOM commander. He answered, then listened.
“General, this is the President. We need you. I am ordering you off the retired list and back to active duty as CENTCOM commander, effective immediately. I want to see your plan for the total destruction of ISIS in 72 hours. Your rules of engagement are simple. Wipe them out.”
We should pause here and note that unless Schlichter, a weekly columnist and author of a book called Conservative Insurgency: The Struggle to Take America Back 2009-2041, is undertaking an extremely long con, this is absolutely, 100 percent, in earnest. (Needless to say, it’s also utterly psychopathic: He’s arguing that the U.S. should flatten a 200,000-person city to kill a tenth as many people.)
Already a cult figure among amateur and professional conservative baiters for his frequent tweets about his “hot wife,” Schlichter’s reached an even wider audience with his latest. The fanfic has been a huge hit on Twitter, where the columnist is eagerly responding to his fans and critics. (Sample: “I don’t presume to tell you about shitty alt-folk acoustic hipster bands, so don’t presume to tell me about military strategy.”) He’s coy about which particular Cuban-American candidate is featured, Rubio or Cruz. The tributes and parodies are legion.