If the NSA's knowing when you masturbate was directly correlated with their ability to stop an attack, that would probably be okay, right?
[Laughs] That would be okay, yes.
I was looking at your standup schedule for the next couple of months: Mobile, Alabama; Corpus Christi, Texas; Jacksonville, Florida; Birmingham, Alabama. Do you have a death wish? Or are you trying to find the liberals there or are you trying to speak to the red staters? What's your goal in picking those venues as opposed to on the East or West Coast where it would be easy to sell out theaters?
Yeah, but I can sell them out in Corpus Christi and Mobile too. The thing is, I don't have to seek out the liberals in those cities. When I come to town, they seek me out. I guess we're seeking each other out. I've learned this over the last 10 or 15 years. There are so many liberal people in conservative areas. There's a lot of reasons why people live where they live, and it's not often, or certainly not always, because that's where they're politically aligned. So there's lots of progressive, free-thinking, liberal people in all these states, and what makes it so fun to go to red areas, if you will, is that those people there are so, I think, gratified that I didn't write off the whole state, go "Alabama, I would never go there!" No, I understand that there are smart people living in Alabama. Yes, they're surrounded by a bunch of rednecks, but when I come to town, there's something more magical than when I go to San Francisco or New York, which is predictably liberal.
And do you find that the people who turn out are, as it were, the liberal base? Or do you get more hecklers?
Oh, no … I mean, I do see sometimes there's very often somebody in the front row scowling at me with his arms folded, but that's invariably a husband who was dragged there by his wife.
I've seen you talk about how 25 years ago, there were Republicans you respected—like Bob Dole, Howard Baker. Who in the Republican Party now, if anybody, do you respect?
Oh, that's a great question. [Laughs] I don't know, do you have a few minutes while I think that over? I mean, name some people, and I'll try to…
Um, yeah, Joe is more of an honest broker. Joe will attack his own party, which I think is the key. You have to be willing to, just like when you're an artist, edit your own best jokes, or you make an album and you cut 16 tracks and you gotta take away four. You gotta be able to kill your own children. That's the same thing with politics. You have to be able to be ruthlessly self-critical and turn on your own people. I've seen Joe do that, so yeah, whenever somebody does that, I do respect them. What I do not like is people who just know how to cheer for their own team. That's the problem I have, again, sometimes with my studio audience in L.A. They only know to cheer for the blue team and boo for the red team. And it's not as simple as that.