What does HBO’s John Oliver know about predatory lending by used car dealers? A lot, actually. On Sunday’s episode of “Last Week Tonight,” Oliver and Keegan-Michael Key appeared in a sketch that breaks down just how disgusting the used car trade is.
Posing as salesmen at “Crazy Johnny’s Used Cars,” the pair gives an overly transparent pitch to viewers about the nature of used car loans. “Is your credit so bad that giving you a high interest loan will basically trap you under a mountain of debt from which there is no reasonable hope for escape?” Oliver asked. “We don’t care!” Key then tries to sell viewers on a beat up sedan that has “four tires, up to one engine, and a beeping device which emits a sound that will haunt your dreams.”
All jokes aside, the auto loans Oliver and Key were mocking are actually being bundled together into financial products to be sold Wall Street, the same practice that took place inside the mortage industry, plunging the U.S. into an economic crisis in 2008.
“If you set aside the human misery this loan has the potential to cause as part of an overcollateralized security, this can be sold as a high yield investment that has disturbing echoes of the mortgage crisis!” Key said.
To watch the sketch in its entirety, check out the video below, starting at the 14:50 minute mark.