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New Rules

New Rule: The unit of time between when something racial happens in America and when Rush Limbaugh says something about it that sounds even worse will be known as a "dick."

New Rule: [slide of Arizona woman] The Arizona woman who placed an ad on Craigslist looking to have sex with a horse has to apologize to horses.Also to Arizona, women, craigslist, and, of course, "McLovin'" [uncannily similar slide image of "McLovin"] She must apologize.

New Rule: Stop calling what happened in Oklahoma this week a "botched execution." The guy died, didn't he? So, it took longer than they promised. What do you expect from government employees. A "botched execution" is when the guy gets up off the gurney and says, "That was refreshing. What's for dinner?"

New Rule: [slide of lone diner sitting opposite giant stuffed animal] The Japanese café that sits people dining alone with a giant, stuffed animal so they don't get sad, has to understand that this makes things infinitely more sad. Especially when the stuffed animal says, "I'm sorry. I don't think this is working out." [laughter] [applause]

New Rule: [slide of Ludwig Dolezal] Ludwig Dolezal, the Czech Republic indigent dubbed "Europe's Dirtiest Man," because he makes a fire each night and sleeps in the warm ashes, sadly must realize life holds one more indignity: Donald Sterling doesn't want him taking pictures with his girlfriend.First, the bear, now this guy. That's it.

All right, and finally, New Rule: You know how sometimes you lose something and you look all over the house for it and you can't find it anywhere, and eventually you just give up and forget about it? We should do that with Malaysia Flight 370.

Watching CNN continue to breathe life into this thing is like watching a doctor on "Grey's Anatomy" pounding on a patient's chest until another doctor has to pull him off and say, "Derek, it's over!"

That's what I want to say to Wolf Blitzer: "Wolf! It's over!" "Time to move on. There'll be other ocean disasters." "We'll always have Atlantis."

But, this isn't news anymore. It's an episode of "Unsolved Mysteries."

Now, I'm sorry, but if you're still glued to CNN for this "breaking story," you're not a caring person unraveling a mystery. You're just a ghoul who's sitting on the remote.

It's funny. Americans don't want to know about GMO's in the food. They don't want to know what's in the Patriot Act or the Defense budget or what's pouring out of the smokestack of that factory on the edge of town. But, this we just have to know.

We've been through the "breaking news" phase, the "initial search" phase, the "expert analysis" phase, the "false ping" phase. Which was complicated by the fact that the captain of the ship looking for the plane was named "Ping."

But, there's a fact we all seem to have forgotten: The ocean is really big. This isn't like forgetting where you parked at Disneyland.

New Rule: The unit of time between when something racial happens in America and when Rush Limbaugh says something about it that sounds even worse will be known as a "dick."

Our country has already spent $11 million on this search. And a source in the Defense Department last week said that a continued search is likely to drag on for years at a cost of hundreds of millions. And if there's anyone who knows about wasting years and money on planes that don't fly, it's our Defense Department.

That is time and money that could be so much better spent, because air travel has never been safer. The risk of death is one in 45 million flights. You know what's riskier? Everything.

Driving. Walking. Taking a shower. Living in Chicago. Hunting with Dick Cheney.

Dating Chris Brown.

But, look, this story has never really been about air safety. It's about our obsessive need for the magic of closure. Ah, closure. Remember how pissed off everybody was when "The Sopranos" ended by going to black without giving us a definitive answer on whether Tony got whacked or went on to be elected governor or New Jersey?

People want answers that button everything all up. That's why they love detective shows and sitcoms and the Bible. It gives them a final reckoning where Jesus returns to judge the living and the dead and reveal that Colonel Mustard did it with the wrench in the dining room.

But, that's not real life. Sometimes, there is no closure. We don't always get to know.

And that's okay. And it's okay to quit looking. I know Americans take great pride in being the "never quit" people. But, that's why we have wars that last a decade or more. And farm subsidies for millionaires. And military bases in countries we fought in 75 years ago. And a senseless 50-year embargo on Cuba.

Some of the best decisions I ever made in my life involved quitting: Smoking. Catholicism.

Acting in sitcoms.

My mullet. [slide of Maher with mullet]

Sometimes, "quitting is for winners."

You know what you get when you never say die, never change course and never quit? Mitt Romney for president.

Episode 316

May 2, 2014

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