President Donald Trump had a busy week, John Oliver noted on Last Week Tonight. He lied about where is dad was born, for no apparent reason. He repeatedly said “oranges” when he was trying to say “origins” at a White House event. He trolled Joe Biden for touching women inappropriately, which, Oliver noted accurately, “seems, you know, a bit fucking rich.”
But Trump’s biggest headline of the week by far was selecting Herman Cain to the Federal Reserve board.
Oliver and Cain go way back – to Oliver’s The Daily Show days.
Cain, a former pizza exec turned radio talk show host, made a White House bid in 2012, dropping out amid charges of sexual harassment. He’s famous for having asked a group of Cuban Americans, on a campaign stop, “How do you say ‘delicious’ in Cuban.” He once bragged about not knowing the name of the “the president of Ubeki-beki-beki-stan-stan.”
And, during a debate, Cain told attendees “a poet once said ‘Life can be a challenge’,” then quoted a song from Pokemon The Movie 2000.
Oliver personally knows Cain should not be on the Fed, reminding viewers of his headline-making The Daily Show interview with the candidate after he’d dropped out of that race.
In that interview, Oliver asked Cain to pretend he had won the White House, telling him to look into the TV camera and convince Nicolas Cage to give back the U.S. Constitution.
“Nicholas, bring back our Constitution,” Cain responded. “I respect you Cage, but get a grip.”
Cain also obliged Oliver’s requests to convince China to “step down,” and to convince national park creatures their sacrifice had not been in vain during an oil spill.
“If any part of you is thinking, ‘How did I get him to do it?’ I just asked him,” Oliver marveled.
Trump made his Cain announcement just two weeks after selecting former CNN commentator Stephen Moore to the same board. Moore is such a sycophant he co-wrote a book, “Trumponomics: Inside the America First Plan To Revive Our Economy,” in which he insisted Trump should win the Nobel prize in economics.
We’ve grown used to other crazy Trump appointments: “Mr. Oops [aka Rick Perry] in charge of the Department of Energy” and “mint condition CPR dummy [Jared Kushner] in charge of opioids and the Middle East,” Oliver noted.
But naming Cain and Moore to the Fed board is far more perilous because, as one former Deputy Secretary of the Treasury explained, “the moment the Fed loses credibility it’s almost Game Over.”
“These two guys are…dangerously goofy goofs,” Oliver said. “Markets can react dangerously to anything people on that board say.”
Cain and Moore, meanwhile, are known for not thinking before they speak.
When porn star Stormy Daniels announced she was suing Trump, for instance, Moore jumped in to remark, “Are you saying porn star would actually try to call attention to herself? Shocking right!? That’s what porn stars do!”
“You don’t want that man’s mouth moving markets,” Oliver said.
“What does Trump see in those two people? Exactly that. He wants people who do what he tells them to do,” Oliver cautioned.
Trump is trying to bring the Fed under his thumb, Oliver explained, because he’s furious it raised interest rates, slowing down the stock market. Trump recently considered firing its chairman, Jerome Powell.
Installing Moore and Cain could undermine the Fed, Oliver said, then issued a call to action:
“As poet once said:
Come with me, the time is right
There is no better team
Arm in arm, we’ll win the fight
It’s always been our dream