John Oliver Stages Largest Giveaway In TV History: Buying & Forgiving $US15 Million In Medical Debt

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It began with the terrifying in-depth segment about the abuses of the debt-buying industry. Americans collectively owe $US12 trillion in debt, which has led to the explosion of debt-buying companies buying and often reselling debt for less than its worth. These predator like companies abuse their relatively easy to procure position by using deceptive and sometimes illegal tactics to collect money owed.

Since ‘any idiot’ can get into the grimy industry, and no one is keeping tabs on them, John Oliver proved how “disturbingly easy” it was by starting his own debt-buying company called CARP aka Central Asset Recovery Professionals (CARP like the “bottom-feeding fish”). Oliver was named the chairman of the board.

I’ll stop yabbering on so you can watch it for yourself. It’s worth the 20 minutes it takes to watch the full segment.

On the one hand, it’s obviously the right thing to do,” he said. “But much more importantly, we’d be staging the largest one-time giveaway in television show history.

That’s right, they’ve one upped Oprah Winfrey and her infamous “You get a car!” moment.


“Clearly this is only going to help the 9000 people whose medical debt we bought. The larger issue is we need much clearly rules and tougher oversight to protect consumers from potentially predatory companies like the one we set up.

“In the meantime it seems the least we can do with this debt I cannot f—ing believe we are allowed to own, is to give it away.”

I’ve often joked (to myself) that if this website ever aspired to be more like any human on earth, it would opt to emulate John Oliver, given his uncanny ability to take on serious issues, unravel and explain them in a funny and easy to understand way, before finishing on some giant moment where he takes action and does something that leaves you feeling happy and maybe inspired to do something yourself. Yes, John Oliver is our spirit animal and this was his best one yet.

Take some action

Inspired by this? Rolling Jubilee do a similar thing and to date, they’ve abolished $31,982,455.76 of debt.

  Get involved with a bailout of the people by the people