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John Oliver Takes Down World’s Weirdest Wannabe President


HBO’s Last Week Tonight with John Oliver saw its host reserve his harshest criticism Sunday night for Javier Milei, a right-wing libertarian Argentinian challenging that country’s finance minister in the upcoming presidential runoff election.

Oliver introduced Milei to American audiences via a 2019 clip of Milei in cosplay, describing himself as “General Ancap.” Ancap, short for anarcho-capitalist.

“Yeah! Just a classic, run-of-the-mill, presidential candidate dressed like Mr. Peanut dressed as a wizard dressed as Batman, pledging to kick the shit out of Keynesians,” Oliver observed. “If I had one note for that superhero, though, it’s that John Maynard Keynes probably isn’t the most compelling super-nemesis. Few economists are. There’s a reason the Avengers fought Thanos and not Alan Greenspan.”

With Argentina experiencing high inflation and with 40 percent of its population living in poverty, Oliver said Milei has proposed cutting public spending by 15 percent of GDP, eliminating most taxes and swapping Argentina’s currency for the U.S. dollar.

Milei haș smashed models of the central bank in piñata form on TV and his own campaign videos, and waved chainsaws in public to symbolize how he wants to slash government. One Milei supporter in a chainsaw costume told a reporter that he doesn’t think it’s a big deal that Milei and his ideas are untested.

“Not to break my one rule and not argue with a guy dressed as a chainsaw but lots of ideas haven’t been tested before,” Oliver retorted. “We also haven’t tried all-trampoline retirement homes or letting a raccoon be chief of surgery. That’s because some ideas are just bad.”

Oliver suggested that maybe don’t hand over the reins to “Latin America’s third-largest economy to a guy who looks like he was escorted out of a Comic-Con panel for asking Scarlet Johansson too many questions.”

But Oliver also pointed out how Milei has been extremely vocal on other subjects no one asked for, including sharing details about his sex life. He told multiple women in a TV interview in 2018 that he ejaculates only once every three months. “I completely believe that the guy we saw screaming at dead economists, smashing miniature banks on TV and waving a chainsaw in the streets may be a little — and I’m sorry for saying this — backed up,” Oliver said.

But with so many Argentinians in economic despair, Oliver said he worries that they may buy what Milei is selling them, even if the anarcho-capitalist dismisses climate change as a socialist lie, believes Donald Trump was one of the best American presidents ever, and even insults Pope Francis, who’s Argentinian.

“I feel the need to tell you we didn’t invent this man for this show,” Oliver joked.



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