In this inventive and biting satire, acclaimed novelist and cultural critic Cintra Wilson reimagines America’s Manifest Destiny as helmed by Caligula, the only leader in world history capable of turning our floundering democracy into a fully functioning—and totally fun—tyranny, both here and abroad. With Caligula running the show, America will finally be able to achieve what the founding fathers really wanted, but never had the nerve to admit. Like, how to:
-Achieve the guilt-free looting of natural resources for the sake of immediate gratification;
-Declare war on abstract concepts (drugs, terror, the ocean) for the sake of imperial expansion;
-Utilize propaganda, psychological operations, and other prisoner-of-war techniques to create a sense of learned helplessness in the citizenry, gain their utterly terrified trust and obedience—and leave them begging for more;
-Rape, pillage, and loot—both here and abroad—with impunity
Wilson also traces the historical arc of Caligula’s life and not-so-hard times, from his privileged childhood in Syria to his ascent to power to his eventual takedown by the hands of an angry populace, to point out the unsettling parallels between his own extravagant reign and a certain administration, which helped usher in a new golden age of unlimited executive power. Part political parable, part cautionary tale, Caligula for President is an ingenious and hilarious send-up of the current state of our Union by one of this generation’s sharpest satirists.