Last Week Tonight with John Oliver (2014–…): Season 3, Episode 4 - Episode #3.4 - full transcript

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Welcome to Last Week Tonight.
I'm John Oliver.

Thank you so much for joining us.
Time for a quick recap of the week.

And we begin with the U.S. election.
Or as you may know it,

the "Clowntown Fuckthe-World
Shitshow 2016."

This was a particularly big week
for the Republican Party,

with Donald Trump winning
seven states on Super Tuesday.

Two more last night. While yesterday's
wins were a little narrower,

it does appear that republican
voters have, for the time being,

decided not to make
Donald Drumpf again.

make Donald Drumpf again.

In fact, Trump's opponents spent the
week seeming increasingly desperate.

He's always calling me little Marco.

He is taller than me, he's like 6'2",
which is why I don't understand

why his hands
are the size of someone who's 5'2".

Have you seen his hands ?
They're like this.

And you know what they say
about men with small hands.

You can't trust 'em.

No, that is not what they say
about men with small hands.

And if you can't say the word "penis",
don't imply the word penis.

It's not even an insult,
it's a Christian rock lyric.

Even as primary voters embrace Trump,
the republican establishment

is rejecting him
like a transplanted organ.

Which is fitting,

as Trump does resemble a kidney
dropped on the floor at a Supercuts.

But to truly reject an organ
you need white blood cells,

and the GOP called up
the whitest blood cell of them all.

Donald Trump tells us
that he is very, very smart.

I'm afraid that when it comes
to foreign policy

he is very, very not smart.

Okay. And that is very, very
not a very good insult.

But Romney wasn't alone.
Prominent republicans

lined up to publicly attack
their own party's frontrunner.

I hope we aren't faced

with the possibility
of having Mr. Trump as our nominee.

I cannot vote for him,
and I will not.

If we nominate Donald Trump,

republicans will be committing
an abortion on their own party

and it will be the end
of the Republican Party as we know it.

Holy shit !
You know they're getting desperate

when they're just throwing
in their favorite buzzwords.

"He won't just be an abortion.
He'll be a Sharia law,

wrapped in a Benghazi-themed
gay wedding."

And I mean it. I'm not
understating that. I mean it.

But, not surprisingly,
Trump hit back hard at his critics,

with his tiny, hamster-sized fists,
during Thursday's debate.

He referred to my hands: if they are
small, something else must be small.

I guarantee you there is no problem.

Donald Trump talked about his dick
during a presidential debate.

A dick which I presume looks like a
Cheeto with the cheese dust rubbed off.

I presume, that's a guess.
But you know what ?

I'm glad he brought it up.
Mainly because I now have an excuse

to play you something that we didn't
have time to include last week:

an audiobook excerpt from his
exwife Ivana's "For Love Alone",

a barely fictionalized
account of their marriage,

as read by Morgan Fairchild.

In a moment, they were on the floor,
on top of the mink coat,

Katrinka's legs gripping his waist as
he moved deeper and deeper into her.

As Adam pulled away from her,

his cock fell for a moment
into the valley between her legs,

leaving a smear of semen
on the dark silk.

He smiled with satisfaction.

"Now you have to keep the coat",
he said.

That is horrible.
Although you can't say

jazzing all over your girlfriend's
clothes is not presidential.

You can't say that.

The Republican Party wasn't doing
damage control at the national level.

A number of local elections
also threw up terrifying results.

Just look at Texas,
the Lone Star State.

In that a lone star is what most
people would give Texas on Yelp.

This week,
voters in Travis County, Texas,

voted for a republican chairman,
and look who they picked.

Real anger after a man republicans
consider to be vulgar and brash

just won control of their party
in Travis County.

I'm politically incorrect. I'm like
Donald Trump on steroids, sweetheart.

Get ready to have fun
reading my Twitter feed.

That guy's overall look
can only be described as:

"Guy kicked out of your gym
for trying to smell women."

Although, in his defense, I will say:
he is not overselling his Twitter feed.

Because in just the 48 hours after
his election, he actually tweeted,

"I am the face
of the Re-pube-licking Party",

and "I like boobies".

Which is still nothing compared
to my favorite tweet of his:

If you Google "Robert Morrow
11 inch penis confirmed",

you get over 11,800,000 hits.
I'm just sayin.'

Which is not true. Because we did it,
and we only got 472,000 hits.

Although, if you Google "Robert Morrow
1 inch penis confirmed",

the results go up by 150,000,
but that's not the point.

The point is, this guy
is now an actual elected official,

Chair of the Travis County
Republican Party. This guy...

Do you think Hillary Clinton
would swallow your cum

or would it be more
of a Lorena Bobbett type situation ?

George W. Bush is like Rick Perry.
Both of them are closet homosexuals.

George Herbert Walker Bush

was being provided young teen boys
to have sex with.

I think Barack Obama
is a gay man that got married.

Bill Clinton, serial rapist.

Hillary Clinton,
rampaging bisexual adulterer.

Rick Perry,
rampaging bisexual adulterer.

Yes. That all sounds appalling.

But to be fair,
the question he was asked was:

"What sounds does Ann Coulter
make as she falls down the stairs."

So with that context,
he's not entirely wrong.

He wasn't the only candidate

to embarrass
the Republican Party in Texas.

Let me introduce you
to Mary Lou Bruner,

a woman who,
based on her jacket,

I can assume was a member
of the 1996 women's gymnastics team.

Is she Kerri Strug ?
I think she's Kerri Strug.

She is running
a successful campaign

for a place on the
Texas State Board of Education.

So let's find out
some more about her.

Bruner has recently
come under fire online

for some passionately stated opinions
she holds, including the idea

that global warming was made up
to promote global socialism

and that President Obama paid
for a drug addiction in his twenties

through homosexual prostitution.

How do people think that people
on welfare who also have a drug habit,

how do they think they pay
for their drugs ?

They steal,
they prostitute themselves.

Say what you will about her !

I would read any history textbook
she had a part in creating.

"Teddy Roosevelt fathered
an illegitimate child

that was half-human, half-bear ?
Why did nobody tell me this ?

Education is fun !
I yearn to learn !"

The Texas state Board of Education

is not known for having the least
controversial personnel in the country.

But she seems extreme,
even for them.

She's previously written that
the dinosaurs were on Noah's ark,

but went extinct afterward,
because and I quote,

"They may have been babies
and not able to reproduce.

It might make sense to take
the small dinosaurs onto the ark

instead of the ones bigger
than a bus."

Which is clearly
scientifically wrong.

We don't have dinosaurs not because
they were too small to have sex,

but because
nobody fucks on a cruise.

The dinosaurs were probably
too full from the buffet.

Crack a book, lady !
Crack a science book !

Republicans were quick to distance
themselves from both candidates.

A current school board member saying:
Bruner would be "a human rain delay",

and the Texas governor's office
issuing the statement,

"Robert Morrow in no way speaks for
the Republican Party or its values".

But doesn't he, though ?
Because in this election cycle,

it'd be a lot easier to argue
that your party shouldn't be judged

by people who spread weird
Obama conspiracy theories

and brag about their dicks
if that didn't also accurately describe

your presumptive nominee
for the presidency.

It's a weird election time
we're going through.

So let's move on to Lands End.
The clothing company so boring,

its name is literally synonymous
with water.

The Lands End catalog has become
the source of an unexpected scandal.

The retailer known
for glossy catalogues like this one

apologizing for what's inside
the new spring issue;

an interview with feminist, journalist,
and political activist Gloria Steinem.

Yes, people were upset
over a Gloria Steinem interview,

which featured
such incendiary quotes as,

"dreams are bigger than goals",
"each person is a unique miracle",

and "Lands' End is helping people
become themselves."

Which is absurd.

The only way Lands' End
helps people "become themselves"

is by providing
a visual expression of rock bottom.

Because that is a puffy coat
with lapels. Fucking lapels !

It's a puffy blazer !

If you see a loved one wearing that,
don't just stand there, comfort them.

It's a cry for help !
They're reaching out !

What upset some customers

wasn't so much Steinem's interview,
as one of her beliefs.

To do a feature
on a pro-abortion feminist.

Why would you do that ?

Pro-life customers promising
to boycott the business.

The company apologized
to customers who were offended

and it has removed Steinem
from its website.

Lands End says its goal was to feature
people who have made a difference

and not to take a political
or religious stance.

Apologizing for the interview
is taking a political stance.

If you didn't want to be religious,
stop making your clothes

look like they're designed
for Mormon spring break.

In an amazing added twist,
Steinem supporters

are now threatening
to boycott the company as well.

I guess, congratulations Lands End:
with one pointless interview

which incidentally,
didn't even mention abortion

you've pissed off everyone
involved in the abortion debate.

I don't know how you did it. But since
you are apologizing about things,

how about apologizing for this shirt

designed to look
like the blueprints of a sailboat ?

Or whatever the fuck this is ?

It looks like something an ER nurse
would wear to a book burning.

Or maybe apologize
for this beige sweater vest,

which, and this is a fact,
you legally are not allowed to own

unless you're a middle school

That's a legal fact.

But I guess it does make sense
that Lands End backed down here.

Because they know that if a woman
truly has the right to choose,

the first thing she'll choose to do

is to shop somewhere else
than Lands End.

And now this !

And now people on TV
mean "fucking".

A new study out says women
are more attracted to wide faced men.

Not to marry though, just to...

Go to Poughkeepsie.

You mean fucking.

Viagra for men, it's not just
for the men if you know what I mean.

Yeah, you mean fucking.

She said they lost it having
a little honeymoon fun,

if you know what I mean.

Fucking, you mean fucking.

The only thing the guys do
of any value involving children

is getting the process started.

You mean fucking.
Fucking to completion.

If you're a husband
who likes to help your wife out,

it may not pay off,
if you know what I mean.

Less sex.

They're giving it to you,
but then they're giving it to you.

You mean getting fucked.

He wants to sew wild oats,
if you know what I mean.

Yes, fucking.

It all starts with a banana,
if you know what I mean.

A penis. For fucking.

You have to heat it up
in different ways !

Fucking !

Why don't you just get yourself
a nice dickie ?

I don't know what you mean.

She means fucking.
She always mean fucking.

Moving on.

Our main story tonight concerns
government. Sports for nerds.

These days, we are all focused
on the presidential race

the most prominent office
in all of government.

But I would like to talk
about one of the smallest

and most obscure forms
of government: special districts.

Tonight, we are talking
about special taxing districts.

Hello people watching
because of our Trump piece.

Also, I presume, goodbye.
Goodbye. Thanks for checking in.

Just so you know: special districts
are small units of government

with the power to take tax dollars
to do one specific thing.

You've heard
of a fire district or a water district.

But they can be set up
for almost any purpose,

and there are way more
of them than you think.

Special districts
have really proliferated

to the point that we have
about 40,000 in the country,

and they account
for 100 billion dollars of spending.

$100 billion a year.

That is $16 billion more
than Russia spends on its military.

And special districts

are the most common form
of local government in the country.

It's like finding out the highest-paid
athlete in the world is Harold.

I mean, who the fuck is Harold ?
What sport does he play ?

Why don't people talk about this
all the time ?

How am I only hearing
about Harold now ?

You're making me feel a fool.

Special districts are so ubiquitous,
and have so little accountability,

states may not even know how many
they have or how much they spend.

Idaho launched an investigation
of special districts,

with objective one: "identify how many
special districts there are in Idaho."

When Kentucky investigated,
its auditor found

that 40% of its districts
didn't even file proper budgets.

This is an extraordinary mess.
As one of my good friends says:

"You can't make this up !"

$2.7 billion system of government

operating because of a lack
of oversight and accountability

has been permitted to become
a level of ghost government.

Yes, ghost government. The shittiest
idea for a ghost story I've heard,

aside from "Ghost Dad".

That was a bad idea before context
changed the way we felt

about Bill Cosby
walking through walls.

Before then it was a bad idea,
after it was horrifying.

It's weird, in a country that talks so
much about government accountability

that our tax dollars fund entities
that most of us know nothing about.

You may not even know how many
districts you are living in now.

A school district may overlap
with a park district, a water district

such that it wouldn't be uncommon
for one person to find themselves

within the boundaries
of ten districts.

Right. Think of
a special district like a cult.

It can take your money and you may
not be aware you are in one.

Allowing the leader to impregnate you
is not mandatory,

no matter what the guy in
the library district says.

No matter what he says
with his words or eyes.

If you are thinking: "what difference
does it make what districts I'm in ?"

It can actually make
a big difference.

One person paid $1 000 as part
of an irrigation special district

that he lives in
in North Central Phoenix,

his neighbor across the street
is not a part of that district.

Their special district bill was $7.
1 000 versus 7 dollars.

The only people who should be paying
$1 000 more than their neighbors

are the assholes who cover their
house with Christmas decorations.

They should be taxed
and then imprisoned.

Then told their
lights "were better last year",

because it's that one that
would hurt them the most.

In theory and often in practice

having small entities with a single
purpose can be a great idea.

Take Litchfield, New Hampshire.

In 2007, they chose to create
a "mosquito control district"

to control mosquitos.

It's run by two men, who
as you will see from an YouTube video

are heartbreakingly conscientious,

regardless of the fact that
there is no one else in the room.

Let's all stand
for the pledge of allegiance.

I pledge allegiance to the flag
of the United States of America

and to the republic for which
it stands, one nation under God,

with liberty and justice for all.

Chair will call the roll.
Acting Vice Chair Mr. Raccio.

- Present.
- I'm here. All members are present.

You have got to admire
their dedication to the rules.

These two are so scrupulous, they
would sit at a broken red traffic light

for six hours
in the middle of the night.

Red is red. We live in a civilized
society. Red is red, we stay.

They ran that 43-minute
meeting so meticulously,

they even took input from the public
with predictable results.

Any members of the public
wishing to speak ?

Seeing and hearing none.

When you're a member
of a ghost government,

it's natural your meetings are going
to be attended by the ghost public.

That is the best-case scenario.
Many special districts are like that

chugging along just fine,
with no major problems.

But some, like the Isaacson Municipal
Utility District in Texas, are not.

An audit recently discovered
$70 000 in losses

and the district billed residents for
water with a disturbing consistency.

We're not
accountants or managers.

We may not have looked at things
as closely as we should've.

IMUD has been billed
for 13,721,200 gallons of water

every year for six years,

rain or drought or weather,
no change, same number.

No charges have been filed,
but that consistency is weird.

The only time the same amount
of water should appear in a document

is in Shamu's rider.

Yeah, Shamu gets 13.7 million gallons
of water in his tank at all times !

He's a fucking artist !
I'm obviously kidding.

You can keep him in a wading pool.
If you wanna fuck his blowhole,

that will be an extra twenty,
thanks for visiting Sea World !

In Kentucky, the lack of supervision
led to outright corruption

with $100 000 being misspent by
one former assistant fire chief.

The Garrett Volunteer Fire Department
in Floyd County used taxpayer money

to buy flat screen televisions,
chewing tobacco and fireworks.

Investigators found pornographic
videos on department electronics.

Porn and chewing tobacco
are obviously inappropriate,

but you know what
upsets me the most there ?

They're a fire department.

That's like EMTs used their
budget to stage scissor races.

They're your natural enemy !

That was nothing compared to
what happened in Rhode Island.

You won't believe the undercover video
we gathered on the man in charge.

Drinking during the day, then driving
the department vehicle to work.

We have him taking
the public safety vehicle to party up,

drinking and smoking marijuana.

This is you, smoking
what looks to be pot.

A cigar maybe ?

You then share the cigar
with your friends, there ?

- I don't know.
- That's a cigar ?

Yes, it is.

No one's gonna buy that.

No, but I'm pretty sure
they'll buy it. That's a cigar.

Just like that's flour for when
you wanna bake one tiny cookie.

That's honey for my tea.
I use a very specific amount.

And that's just some quartz I keep
laying around. I love quartz.

Corruption is not unique
to special districts.

There are problems in all other
forms of government.

But when special districts
only have one job,

it makes it all the more noticeable
when things go wrong.

Take Evergreen Park, Illinois.

The county it's in has four
mosquito abatement districts,

to prevent the spread
of West Nile,

so it had to be humiliating
when this happened:

Mayor of suburban Evergreen
Park came down with West Nile virus.

The mayor got fucking West Nile !

No one is expecting a zero
percent failure rate here,

but if you're surrounded by that many
mosquito abatement districts,

shouldn't there at least be agents
willing to take a mosquito for him ?

One of the most interesting ways
that special districts are different

is how they can be created seemingly
out of thin air.

In Conroe, Texas, a company
was hoping to create

a new neighborhood
on undeveloped land.

They wanted to form a special district
which could issue bonds.

The law required a vote.
But no one lived there yet.

So guess what they did ?

Tim Kellerman saw someone installing
a mobile home next to his house,

he asked them what's going on.

He told me
it's none of my business.

This man and his wife signed a nine
month lease with Stingray Services.

After that,
he said they're moving out.

They're the only two people
who can vote

on $500 million dollars worth of
bonds for the new housing project.

Two people voting for $500 million
of bonds and then leaving.

It's as if Simba's father
looked out over the plains and said:

"Son, someday this will all be
someone else's problem".

And they both fucked off
and never came back.

And that process is legal.
This wasn't the only place

where Stingray Services provided
what they called

"turn-key voter
trailer election services."

They once even advertised
on Craigslist, with an ad reading:

eligible tenants will vote in
and serve as election officials

for the Election which takes
place in the home.

You're not just the only voters,
you're the election officials

and your trailer
is the polling station.

You wonder why they didn't throw in
bullshit ballot initiatives for fun.

On the motion that Jenna start
cleaning out her hairbrush

because it's starting to look like
we have a cat, we're tied one-to-one.

Once a special district is created,

you can be sure no one is going
to be watching what you do.

Remember that
New Hampshire video ?

When we found it on YouTube,
it had zero views. Zero !

Those two guys themselves
didn't even watch it.

That is anti-viral, as videos go.

Voter accountability is
pretty unlikely, too.

One county in New York found
turnout rates for some elections

could be as low as 1.8 percent.

Because that county held one
election every 10.9 business days,

with not a single one
taking place on Election Day.

Which seems inherently suspicious.
It would be a bit of a red flag

if someone offered children candy every
11 days, but never on Halloween.

It would give you
pause for thought.

If the state government
does investigate,

special districts blow them off.

When that Kentucky auditor
asked his state's districts

about making their information
public, he got unhelpful responses.

Here's one, direct quote, we didn't
take any liberties with these.

This contains information
the public is not entitled to know.

We don't want to fill this out

because there are too many
crack pots in the world.

And my favorite, we'd rather
the public contact us directly

to gain information
so we know who's asking.

You get the sense
their preferred mode of contact

would be an email to fake
email address at fuck off dot gov.

If, after hearing that, Kentuckians
wanted to shut a district down,

they might not be able to,
because, as that auditor wrote:

"many districts may exist because
there's not a process to be dissolved."

There's no way to break them up.
They're like Styrofoam packing peanuts

or the enduring friendship of
Jimmy Fallon and Justin Timberlake.

They'll be with us
until the end of time.

Some states are pushing
to reform special districts.

California has made them far more
transparent in recent years.

An association in San Diego launched
a competition for schoolchildren

to create a one-minute
video educating the public

about "what's so special
about special districts ?"

The deadline was Tuesday
and it had a $1 500 top prize.

I know that 'cause we entered
with some local school kids.

And this is the result:

Today's top story, special districts !
What's so special about them ?

Special districts collect taxes
to handle one specific service.

Like fight fire. Or provide water.
Or buy fireworks or smoke cigars.

Special districts
can receive little oversight.

They're called
ghost governments.

I used to be afraid of ghosts.
But now ? I'm afraid of girls.

Special districts can also
be very easy to create.

Sometimes the only people voting for
them are two people in a trailer.

Made by two people
in a trailer in an empty fieldý

Sounds like my younger brother.
True, Declan, you weren't wanted !

Sometimes, special districts
aren't so special.

Like when the mayor of a village
with four mosquito spraying districts

got the West Nile Virus.

Come on !

That would barely be acceptable
if your town were near the Nile.

A river you think so little about,

you don't even realize
that's not the Nile !

This is the Nile.

But perhaps the most special part
is how hard it is to get rid of them.

They're almost impossible to destroy.
Like Wolverine !

Even Superman
couldn't destroy Wolverine !

They would never meet
because that's crossing universes.

Special districts take our money
and do whatever they want with it

with little to no consequences.

When I grow up,
I want to be a special district.

And now, this.

That's our show, thank you for
watching. See you next week !

I used to be afraid of ghosts,
but now I'm afraid of girls.

I used to be afraid of ghosts,
but now I'm afraid of girls.

Even Superman
couldn't destroy Wolverine.

That would bearly be acceptable
if your town were near the Nile.

That's not the Nile.
This is the Nile right here.

You know it's true Declan.
You weren't wanted.