Americans are fiercely protective of the imaginary wealth they don't have yet, and John Oliver believes that the idea that we're a nation of "haves and soon-to-haves," as Marco Rubio actually put it, explains why we perpetuate policies that have led us to near-Great-Depression levels of inequality.
Sure, the top 1% rake now in 20% of annual income in the U.S., but we keep cutting their taxes because we could be them one day. Optimism!
So we end up with popular calls to abolish the estate tax, which applies to less than a quarter of a percent of estates.
"Basically, if you're not comfortable calling your accumulation of shit an 'estate,' the estate tax probably doesn't fucking apply to you," as Oliver eloquently puts it.
But why ruin our dreams with things like "numbers" and "economics" when Powerball still exists? There's always a chance!
[H/T Last Week Tonight]