This headline is real. In a stunning example of just how dumb the global debt racket is, HBO TV host John Oliver, of This Week Tonight, spent $50 to register a company in Mississippi, bought $15 million of medical debt for $60,000, and then retired it all, wiping the deficit clean for 9,000 random Americans.

Oliver’s not the first to pull this off. In fact, people from the Occupy Wall Street movement have been buying and retiring similar amounts of debt for anywhere from $100,000 to $300,000 for a while now, managing to clear $31 million of someone else’s problems in the process.

There’s a long way to go. According to reports, Americans owe some $3.3 trillion before you even get into the $8 trillion they owe on mortgages. Many of these debt buying companies take on debts banks figure aren’t collectable, then get more aggressive than the banks are allowed to, then sell off anyone they can’t track to yet another company that gets even more aggressive, and so on down the line. The deeper those debts are traded, the worse the debt collector tactics get.

Do the math quickly on Oliver’s debt purchase; every dollar he bought cost $0.004. If a company can squeeze just 5c for every $100 owed, they’re in profit, so there’s every incentive to get mean about it.

I have no punchline here. I just think it’s rank someone can receive multiple abusive phone calls a day from a long line of mercenary phone douches at mercenary dick companies, for the rest of their life, because they got sick one time.

There oughta be a law.

–Chris Parry

Written By:

Chris Parry

A multi-Webster Award winner for excellence in BC journalism, Parry is the founder and publisher of Equity.Guru, which he built with the specific plan to blend old school reporting with stock promotion, in a way that puts the emphasis on truth, high standards, and ethics. Parry is a veteran of TV, radio, and print, and consults with public companies to help them figure out their storylines, lay down achievable milestones, and improve their communication with shareholders, while also posting regular deep dive analysis of companies in the public spotlight.

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