After previously using his powers of creativity to paint a world where people are more tolerant of a person’s lifelong campaign to shun homosexuals, Ender’s Game author Orson Scott Card has spun another fantastical, mind-bending yarn: that of a very near-future America where Obama is a Hitler-like dictator, remaining in power indefinitely with the help of his army of “urban gangs.” It’s a scenario that Card himself dubs “just a silly thought experiment,” like the sort of playful, what-if exercise that has long captured the imagination of producers trying desperately to pretend that someone else besides Orson Scott Card is responsible for the movie they’re trying to sell, because good lord. It's also every bit as convincing.
The post—preemptively titled “Unlikely Events,” to make clear Card doesn’t really believe all the very specific predictions based on character assassinations and subtle racism he’s about to lay out, but rather is just asking questions here—first appeared back in May, though it’s only now getting some attention thanks to Dave Weigel's essay in Slate and other, obvious reasons. For instance, there's the anticipation surrounding Ender’s Game and the attendant craze for more sci-fi fun, and the fact that Obama is an Augustus-like emperor who “acts as if the Constitution were just for show” and “hates the very idea of compromise,” as all the totally uncompromised legislation Obama has pushed through bears out.
As Card’s “job in writing sci-fi is to make impossible events seem not just possible but likely. Inevitable,” he uses these incontrovertible scientific facts as the basis for his convincing speculative fiction, which sees Obama installing himself “as president for life, like the dictators he so admires and envies in Russia, China, and the Muslim world,” and explains how—as an articulate black man—he will inevitably evolve into a ruthless demigod:
Having been anointed from the start of his career because he was that magical combination — a black man who talks like a white man (that's what they mean by calling him "articulate" and a "great speaker") — he has never had to work for a living, and he has never had to struggle to accomplish goals. He despises ordinary people, is hostile to any religion that doesn't have Obama as its deity, and his contempt for the military is complete.
You'd think that such a man could not possibly remain in office past the Constitutional limit of two terms — but I think the plan is already in place… Michelle Obama will be Obama's designated "successor," and any Democrat who seriously opposes her will be destroyed in the media the way everyone who contested Obama's run for the Democratic nomination in 2008 was destroyed.
But while it’s easy for anyone to imagine a scenario where a power-mad Obama convinces all 50 states to elect his wife, just by using the influence of the media that the U.S. so admires, it really takes a science-fiction author of Card’s caliber to conceive of exactly how he’ll do it. “Like Hitler, he needs a powerful domestic army to terrify any opposition that might arise,” Card writes, proceeding to the next, most logical conclusion that Obama will soon be running a “national police force” composed of inner-city gang members who are tasked with killing his enemies:
The NaPo will be recruited from "young out-of-work urban men" and it will be hailed as a cure for the economic malaise of the inner cities. In other words, Obama will put a thin veneer of training and military structure on urban gangs, and send them out to channel their violence against Obama's enemies.
Instead of doing drive-by shootings in their own neighborhoods, these young thugs will do beatings and murders of people "trying to escape" — people who all seem to be leaders and members of groups that oppose Obama.
But don’t worry: “Will these things happen? Of course not. This was an experiment in fictional thinking,” Card says—just one of those little larks where you daydream that the president wants to be Hitler and wield a massive army of gang members, just for funzies and because "it sure sounds plausible, doesn't it?"And, as Card says, “like a good fiction writer, I made sure this scenario fit the facts we already have,” which are that Orson Scott Card is hate-filled and insanely paranoid.