See this guy? He's running for U.S. Senate in Florida. He's a young lawyer who claims to have worked his way through school at the University of South Florida while homeless. He's a deeply religious family man — a father of four, actually — and sharply dressed, well groomed, and quite handsome as far as politicians go.
Sure, he's young and lacks experience, but at 32 years old, he's the same age as leading Democratic candidate Patrick Murphy, a guy who has held office for only three years. At first glance, this candidate seems to be an interesting political rising star in a state that desperately needs one. Maybe, just maybe, based on those facts alone, you might educate yourself on his positions and consider supporting him.
Yeah, well, this is Florida, and we can't have nice things.
In fact, virtually everything else about this guy is insane, beginning with his name, Augustus Sol Invictus — which is Latin for "majestic unconquered sun" and decidedly not his birth name — and ending with the fact that he recently admitted to drinking goat blood as part of a religious animal sacrifice. Oh, there's more, folks. He's maybe a fascist and white supremacist, and he's caused the floundering Libertarian Party of Florida to fall apart at the seams.
Honestly, this guy's whole deal almost seems too unreal, even by Florida standards. It's like part of me thinks that last night I got hit by a car and I'm actually in a medically induced coma at Jackson Memorial Hospital but my brain is fantasizing about going about my regular day, which involves writing about odd Florida things, and this is something my subconscious, possibly damaged mind has imagined as something that might happen in Florida. Like this is some odd dream cobbled together with pieces of every other weird Florida story into some sort of bizarre supernarrative.
Except I just pinched myself, and I guess this is real.
But let's back up a second.
Remember Adrian Wyllie? He ran for governor as a Libertarian last year against Charlie Crist and Rick Scott. He got 3.9 percent of the vote and after the defeat took over as chairman of the state's Libertarian Party, except he didn't do a good job of recruiting someone to run for the U.S. Senate, and Invictus is the only guy running for the party's nomination. Worried, Wylie decided to resign from his post to bring attention to how batshit crazy Invictus is.
Here's an excerpt from Wyllie's resignation letter, as posted on Facebook:
Mr. Invictus has repeatedly vowed that it is his destiny to start a second civil war in America. In a 2013 memo to his colleagues, he wrote, “I have prophesied for years that I was born for a Great War; that if I did not witness the coming of the Second American Civil War, I would begin it myself."
He has described himself as an American Fascist, and even his campaign logo is nearly identical to that of Benito Mussolini. He has displayed swastikas in his published campaign materials.
He has expressed support for a eugenics program, which would sterilize, euthanize or forcibly abort "the weakest, the least intelligent, and the most diseased."
Many of his supporters are known members of Neo-Nazi and white supremacist groups, such as American Front, Vinelanders, and Stormfront, and he has been recruiting them into the Libertarian Party.
In a private, face-to-face meeting with Mr. Invictus, I asked him directly, "Do you actually intend to kill millions of people and start a civil war?" His answer to me was, "It's my religion."
Oh, wait, there's more!
Mr. Invictus practices Thelema, an occult pagan religion based on the teachings of Aleister Crowley. Mr. Invictus was ejected from Ordo Templi Orientis for brutally and sadistically dismembering a goat in a ritualistic sacrifice.
So he's a pagan — but a pagan that is even too extreme for other pagans.
Of course, the worst to Wyllie is that Invictus isn't even a real Libertarian!
Clearly, this man is the absolute antitheses of a Libertarian. Violent Fascist and Neo-Nazi ideologies are completely incompatible with Libertarian values. As such, I had repeatedly and vocally disavowed him and his followers. I advised the LPF that I would continue to speak out against him, regardless of the consequences.
But is all of this true? Well, the Orlando Sentinel got Invictus on the phone, and, yeah, well, he admits some of it is true.
"I did sacrifice a goat. I know that's probably a quibble in the mind of most Americans," he said. "I sacrificed an animal to the god of the wilderness... Yes, I drank the goat's blood."
Yeah, remember when the British were going crazy last month because there were rumors their prime minister may have stuck his penis in the mouth of a dead pig when he was a schoolboy? They probably thought no one was going to top the weirdness of that political story for a while — but never underestimate Florida. We see your pig-head-assaulting prime minister and raise you not only a goat-blood-drinking Senate candidate but also a goat-blood-drinking Senate candidate who is openly admitting to the fact.
Invictus, however, says he's not a white supremacist. His four children are of Hispanic descent, after all, but he admits he might have some supporters who are white supremacists.
Oh, he also likes to speak in a fake voice. From Politico Florida:
Another notable change with Invictus: His public speaking persona is far different than his one-on-one interactions. On his Facebook page, Invictus has a fierce and dramatic oratorical style and occasionally sounds like a Southerner. In casual conversation, though, he has no accent. Invictus said the change is a result of nerves.
Indeed, here's a fireside chat from his Facebook page about civil war and eugenics. That background image is his logo, by the way.
According to Orlando Weekly , Invictus also recently made this call to action on a blog on LinkedIn.
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“I do not want you to vote, so much as I want you to wake up. I want you to drop out and tune in. I want you to take LSD and practice sorcery. I want you to listen to trap music and black metal, to learn the law and to break it deliberately, to find your own religion. I want you to learn the use of firearms and subject yourselves to rigorous physical training. I want you to treat your bodies as Holy Temples and to take your girlfriend to a strip club so you can seduce a dancer in the back room. I want you to worship Nature and dance naked in the moonlight ‘round the fire, screaming in ecstatic joy. I want you to revolt. Raise Hell. Break your limitations. Renounce your life and go into the Wilderness, that God may speak to you of things to come.”
That might actually be the weirdest part of this twisted story. Who posts blogs on LinkedIn?
As for Wyllie, the whole thing has apparently gotten to him.