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‘Megareverend’ John Oliver trolls televangelists with new tax-exempt church

John Oliver
John Oliver
John Oliver

John Oliver

Last Week Tonight host Our Lady of Perpetual Exemption Megareverend and CEO John Oliver is diving into an already crowded pit of televangelists for a shot at his own private jet and mansion…I mean tax-exempt “parsonage.”

The HBO satirist launched a tax-exempt church Sunday night to criticize the Internal Revenue Service’s hands-off approach to televangelist fraudsters who promise prosperity, at a price.

Oliver spends much of the 20-minute segment lampooning the likes of Creflo Dollar, who earlier this year asked congregants to cough up $65 million for a luxury private jet; Mike Murdock, who says he bought two jet—in cash; and Kenneth and Gloria Copeland, who used their $20 million “preaching machine” jet for skiing and hunting trips across America when they wanted to get away from their $6.3 million mansion, which they live in tax-exempt thanks to a parsonage allowance.

Tomorrow I’ll dig into the IRS rules and regulations that make such tax-exempt extravagances possible. For now, watch Oliver take down these notorious televangelists, all while minting his own satirical scheme.

For my full RNS wire story with IRS analysis, read ‘Megareverend’ John Oliver trolls televangelists with new tax-exempt church.

About the author

Brian Pellot

Brian Pellot is based in Cape Town, South Africa.


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  • Of course, the charlatans who bilk money out of the sick and desperate should be prosecuted for practicing medicine without a license, and irs regulations should be enforced. But in general, if people are stupid enough to give their money to these hucksters, then they deserve what they get (which is nothing). If they didn’t send the dough to Osteen, Warren, Creflo, Copeland, or Tilton, they would probably donate it to Pat Robertson or Santorum or Huckabee or more political flim-flammers. At least, Warren, Osteen, Creflo, Copeland, Tilton et al. just waste the money on themselves.

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