On HBO’s Last Week Tonight, host John Oliver picked a ripe target in America’s “prosperity gospel” preachers, evangelists who bilk followers out of hundreds of millions of dollars, explaining “this is about the churches that exploit people’s faith for monetary gain.”
Oliver explained that prosperity gospel evangelists preach “that wealth is a sign of God’s favor, and that donations will result in wealth coming back to you. That idea takes the form of ‘seed faith’—that donations are seeds that you will one day get to harvest.”
The host shared what seemed like an endless collection of clips of evangelists boasting about their private luxury jets — paid for with believers’ donations — and demanding viewers send them more “seed money” with the promise that it will lead them to great wealth one day.
“The argument is, sow your money in the ground and you will reap multiple returns many time over,” Oliver explained. “Except, as an investment, you’d be better off burying your money in the actual ground because at least that way there is a chance your dog may dig it up and give it back to you one day.”
Describing the call for funds “predatory,” Oliver shared a clip of evangelist Mike Murdock encouraging followers with burdensome credit card debt to use those same cards to send him $1,000 with the promise that, in doing so, God will step in to make that debt disappear.
“Think about that,” an incredulous Oliver said. “That is the equivalent of saying, ‘The key to losing weight lies at the bottom of this giant Costco bulk bag of Peanut Butter M&M’s, go find it, it’s definitely down there.'”
Seeing an opportunity at hand, Oliver created his own church — Our Lady of Perpetual Exemption — with an assist from Sister Wanda Jo Oliver (played by former SNL star Rachel Dratch) and encouraged his new followers to quietly meditate on the nature of fake non-profit money-grubbing tax-avoiding churches.
Praise the Lord, and pass the donations.
Watch the video below from HBO:
Rick Santorum starts shouting about Joe Biden after being unable to defend Trump’s Ukraine scheme
After Tuesday's impeachment testimony, former Sen. Rick Santorum (R-PA) tried to defend President Donald Trump's Ukraine scheme to a CNN panel — and was reduced to shouting about former Vice President Joe Biden as his co-panelists tore down his arguments.
"Every one of the people there had the same thing, which is to change the Obama policy, which was leaving Ukrainians without any way to defend themselves ... we have [Trump] in there and fighting for Ukraine and now the Democrats are saying, well, this is wonderful, BUT..."
"Let me just ask you the question," said former Obama strategist David Axelrod. "Because this lethal aid has been important, it gives them quite a bit of leverage, the president, if he wants them."
Jim Jordan’s attacks on Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman at impeachment hearing badly backfire
Republicans tried to raise doubts about Army Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman’s credibility and loyalty during Tuesday’s impeachment hearing. Their attacks appeared to backfire.
Vindman, the top Ukraine expert on the National Security Council and an Iraq war veteran who earned a Purple Heart after being wounded in combat, faced questions from the House Intelligence Committee in full uniform.
This piece first appeared at Salon.com.Rep. Jim Jordan, R-Ohio, who was transferred to the Intelligence Committee specifically for the impeachment hearings, attempted to discredit the witness during his questioning.
WATCH: Dejected Devin Nunes slumps back in his chair after he fails to yield his time to Elise Stefanik
The top Republican on the House Intelligence Committee was visibly frustrated after once again getting shut down while attempting a parliamentary maneuver.
Rep. Devin Nunes (R-CA) has been attempting to ignore the rules governing the impeachment inquiry so that he can yield Republicans' time to fellow members of Congress, instead of just the professional GOP counsel.
Nunes has attempted to yield time to Rep. Elise Stefanik (R-NY), who has been raising re-election funds off of her outbursts in the hearings.
Once again, Nunes attempted to yield his time to a fellow Republican and once again Nunes was told that is against the rules.