It seems only fitting that ClickHole, the Onion spinoff that has expertly spoofed clickbaity articles for years, has turned its attention to hyperpartisan political news. On Wednesday morning, the site launched PatriotHole, a new feature aptly described as “the internet’s last stand against the tyranny of Leftist Media.”
ClickHole debuted five articles today under the new banner, just ridiculous enough to qualify as parody and yet sufficiently within the realm of established conservative outrage that your racist uncle could still share them them on Facebook. One goes after the Mainstream Media for hiding the tragic events of Sept. 11, 2001—when “radical Islamic terrorists crashed airplanes into the World Trade Center” but lefty reporters were too politically correct to say anything about it. (Or about the Muslims who cheered it.) Another reports on a nationalist’s worst nightmare: Berkeley scientists creating a “mecha-Dreamer” who can steal six jobs at once. Some pieces even outright demand Facebook sharing—a reminder that in this political climate, there’s nothing more powerful than the social-media spread of #FakeNews.
It’s very much in the spirit of what ClickHole has been doing for years. Given the current media climate, however, the site’s team has shrewdly recognized the unique role it can play in the broader category of political satire. Consider the events of the past week alone: A conspiracy theory that ravaged through Breitbart and Fox News about a DNC staffer’s murder eventually took on the sheen of parody before being widely and forcefully debunked by CNN and NBC News on Tuesday night. If only PatriotHole launched a week ago, it’d have some real competition on its hands.
No worries, though: The market for political hysteria is still alive and well. (In case you haven’t heard, things are a little crazy out there right now.) Depending on where this experiment goes, the conspiracy theorists may have just found their favorite new source for news.