Last Week Tonight with John Oliver (2014–…): Season 9, Episode 20 - Episode #9.20 - full transcript

Are you wondering how healthy the food you are eating is? Check it -

Welcome to "Last Week Tonight"!
I'm John Oliver.

Thank you so much for joining us.
It has been a busy week.

And a huge one for the president,

with Congress passing
the Inflation Reduction Act,

which includes
the single largest investment

in combating climate change
in U.S. history.

In any other week,

that would have completely
dominated the headlines.

But not this one!

Because as I'm sure
you know by now, on Monday,

the FBI searched Mar-a-Lago
and seized documents,

something that Trump reacted
to with characteristic restraint.

Mr. Trump said Mar-a-Lago
was "under siege, raided,

and occupied
by a large group of FBI agents",

"They even broke into my safe!"

No, not your safe!

Amazingly, it turns out, the FBI
even checks your locked safes

when they go through your home
with a search warrant.

The only way around that is if your
safe says "no FBI allowed!" on it.

Then, legally,
they can't look in there.

The search apparently stems from
classified and sensitive documents

that Trump took from the White House
as he left office,

with some reportedly containing
information related to nuclear weapons.

And I am not going to speculate
or jump to conclusions here,

because there is still so much
that we don't know.

But many seemed more than happy
to do that this week,

with multiple Republicans
likening the FBI to the Gestapo,

Fox News
trawling through the Facebook feed

of the judge
who approved the warrant

and showing a meme of his face
on Jeffrey Epstein's body,

and others preemptively minimizing
what Trump may have done.

There are a number of things

that are classified that fall under
the umbrella of nuclear weapons,

but that are not necessarily
things that are truly classified.

Many of them you can find
on your own phone.

I don't know exactly
what's going on with that guy,

but the way he's clearing his throat
lets me know

that his body is reacting to the
nonsense that he's spewing there.

Because while it's true that we do
absolutely over classify documents,

and it's also true that the internet
holds a vast array of knowledge

that it probably shouldn't,
like info on nuclear weapons

and an entire website
devoted to celebrities' feet,

I'm waiting, by the way.

I would not be so quick
to assume

the most cautious AG
the U.S. has had for a while

took the unprecedented step of sending
the FBI to an ex-president's house

if he didn't think
it was absolutely necessary.

There is clearly gonna be a lot more
to say about this as things develop,

but we're going to dive straight
in with our main story this week,

which concerns Afghanistan.

A country that's blessed the world
with innumerable treasures,

from embroidery to traditional
Pashto and Persian poetry

to the Afghan hound, undoubtedly,
the Real Housewife of show dogs.

She's a messy bitch
and she lives for drama.

This week marked 1-year anniversary
of our withdrawal from Afghanistan,

which you may remember
was complete mayhem.

They were scenes marked
by chaos and desperation.

Hundreds of Afghan citizens running
alongside a departing U.S. C-17.

Nearly a year after the U.S withdrawal,
the indelible images remain.

A U.S. Marine lifting a baby

over a barbed-wire-topped wall
at Kabul's airport.

And this photo, taken by technical
sergeant Justin Triola.

How many people do you think
are on your jet?

800 people on your jet?

Holy cow!

Yup! I think everyone knew the U.S.
occupation was going to end badly,

but it's still shocking
just how bad it was.

In terms of things not going
the way that you thought,

our exit was the foreign policy
equivalent of putting a cake in the oven

and then, 40 minutes later,
taking out a live rat dressed as Hitler.

It's not just a fuck-up,

it's a mind-blowing fuck-up
that'll take years to fully comprehend.

Everything happened so fast, apparently
"even the Taliban was surprised"

at how quickly
the Afghan government fell.

And a pretty decent way of knowing
if the U.S. did a good job at something

is by asking the question,

"Was whatever we did
a fun surprise for the Taliban?"

Within a matter of days,
the Afghan government fell

and the Taliban took over,
and many top U.S. military officials

have struggled since then to put into
words how badly they miscalculated,

with General Mark Milley
putting it like this.

All the intel assessments,
all of us, got that wrong.

There's no question about it.
That was a swing and a miss

on the intel assessment
of 11 days in August.

There's nobody that called that.

Yeah, that's about right.
"Swing and a miss"

describes roughly 40% of the U.S.
government's history.

The breakdown of "stuff we've done"
goes something like this:

40% "swing and a miss",
20% "beefed it",

15% "whoops",
15% "whoops, parentheses, murders",

and 10% "delivered most,
but not all, of the mail."

There is a lot to criticize
about the way we left Afghanistan,

including the fact that, while we
managed to get roughly 80,000 Afghans,

many of whom had worked with the U.S.,
to America since the withdrawal,

the number who remain in danger

because of the association
with the U.S mission

can be counted
in the hundreds of thousands.

So, criticism of what happened
is completely justified,

though maybe not from the guy
whose administration

signed the deal
to leave in the first place.

Bagram is this great air base
that was built many years ago,

and it cost them
billions and billions.

And we left in one night, everybody
was gone, they left the lights on.

Think of it, the lights were all
left on, the dogs were left behind,

by the way, for those people
that like dogs.

But we left, and they don't
like dogs, you know that?

They don't like dogs.
They don't like 'em at all.


It has been a while since we've heard
Trump's voice on this show,

and I somehow forgot
just how bizarrely incoherent he is.

It's truly extraordinary
to see his brain

function like a crow spotting
a crumpled-up can.

'Cause he's flying, he's flying,
he's flying, and then?

"Whoa nelly, hold on,
is that what I think it is?

Shiny garbage? Nosedive!"

Also comments about people not liking
dogs are a little odd coming from a man

who, every time he holds one,
seems to make the dog want to die.

But we're not going to talk about the
withdrawal from Afghanistan tonight.

Instead, we're going to focus
on everything that's happened since.

While Afghanistan has faded as a topic
of discussion in this country,

it really shouldn't,
'cause it's in dire crisis right now.

And I will admit, this is a grim topic.
But it's also an important one.

Because things are going worse
in Afghanistan than you may know,

for reasons that have even more to do
with our decisions

than you might think.

So tonight,
let's check in on Afghanistan.

And let's start with the fact
that, as I mentioned earlier,

the Taliban is now in charge.

And in the early days
of their takeover,

they tried to convey a slightly
softer image to journalists,

through carefree photo ops
like this one,

where Taliban members
visited a fairground in Kabul,

or this one,
where they took a trip to the zoo,

and really spelled out the message
that they wanted the world to hear.

We want to show everyone
that under Islamic rule and security,

everything is enjoyable,

and everyone can live in their
own country the way they want.

Yeah, 'cause that's what you
associate the Taliban with:

freedom for everyone
to live their best life.

Also, for what it's worth,

I don't think losing the right
to drive bumper cars or go to the zoo

was at the top of anyone's list of
concerns when the Taliban took over.

It's akin to the Pope saying,
"Don't worry, everyone:

Catholics are still allowed
to use pogo sticks!"

Okay, great, but to be honest,
that's not the main issue

people have with the Catholic Church
right now.

And while the Taliban
is not actually a monolith,

different regional leaders rule
with different degrees of severity,

I do still feel comfortable saying
everything's very much not enjoyable

for everyone in Afghanistan
right now.

For starters, there've been brutal
reprisals against U.S. allies

and former Afghan
government employees,

nearly 500 of whom were killed
or forcibly disappeared

during the Taliban's first six months
in power,

and on a much bigger level,

the Taliban's taken an absolute
sledgehammer to women's rights.

For all the many legitimate
criticisms of America's occupation,

women did make huge gains there:

in 2001, there were few,
if any, girls in school,

and by 2020, girls made up
roughly 40% of all students.

That same year,
"Afghanistan's parliament

had a higher percentage of women
than the U.S. Congress did."

But now they've essentially
gone back to zero.

But much more than that,

Taliban decrees have tried to control
nearly every aspect of women's lives,

ordering that they shouldn't leave
their homes unless necessary,

and that only women
who can't be replaced by men

will be allowed to keep working.

In fact, one of the only areas
women can work is in healthcare,

because there are some situations

where men aren't allowed
to treat women as patients.

This midwife, for example,
is still working in a hospital.

But she is furious about what
she sees happening to her country.

The Taliban cannot ban me
from working in the hospital,

because they know
that it is needed.

I humbly request the Taliban,

do not meddle in women's rights
to education and employment.

Otherwise, they are amputating
one arm from the body of society.

Our societies
are made of two pillars,

the pillar of men
and another pillar of women.

How can you run your life

Of course. You can't run a society
on a pillar of just men.

I mean, we've tried,
for thousands of years, we have tried.

But look where it's got us:

we have a global pandemic,
the planet is on fire,

"The Baby-Sitters Club" is canceled
despite unparalleled critical success,

and the world's richest man
is a ventriloquist dummy from hell.

Let's maybe lean on that one pillar
a little bit less.

And things are getting worse.
Because in March,

the Taliban went back on a promise
that they made when they took over,

and announced that girls
would be prevented

from receiving a secondary school
education in most of the country.

Now, that decision "drew widespread
condemnation in Afghanistan,

including from many
Taliban members".

But the leadership pushed back,
claiming that it's just temporary,

and arguing, among other things,
that they simply

"needed more time to decide on
a school uniform for teenage girls."

Which is clearly total bullshit.

Besides, for an organization
so concerned with virtue and purity,

taking months to brainstorm
a schoolgirl uniform you like

is objectively the single
perviest thing you can do.

Women in particular have lost
a great deal in the last year.

But on top of that,

the country is facing a cascading
series of humanitarian crises.

The UN has estimated that
"as much as 97% of the population

is at risk of sinking
below the poverty line."

And part of that is due
to a series of natural disasters,

from an ongoing severe drought
that's hit around 80% of the country,

devastating food production,

to a massive earthquake in June,
and flooding just this month.

But that's been exacerbated
by the fact that this is all falling

on a new Taliban government that
is in no way equipped to take it on.

The Taliban now need to shift
from being a jihadist insurgency

to a ruling group.

20 years, you've built an organization
that was designed to fight,

and you motivated people
to engage in suicide bombings.

They don't turn into people who
are government officials overnight.

Yeah, of course not.

A militant insurgency group
is pretty low on the list of people

that you want leading a government,
right around the Hell's Angels,

the Manson family,
and Ron DeSantis.

And to be a million percent clear,
I am not suggesting

that the U.S. occupation
was a perfect, magic wonderland.

It was awful in its own ways,

not least, having to live under the
specter of hellfire being rained down

from flying unmanned
death machines every day.

Our continued presence there
was untenable.

But the exact circumstances
of our departure

have, to a significant degree,
made things substantially worse.

We've made a series of decisions,
some of them understandable,

that have had huge ramifications
for the Afghan people.

And let's start with the Taliban
government itself.

When it took over, many of its members
were already sanctioned by the U.S.,

because we list the Taliban as a
Specially Designated Terrorist Group.

So, suddenly,
those pre-existing sanctions

applied to at least part
of the Taliban government.

Take Sirajuddin Haqqani.

The State Department
currently has a $10 million reward

out for information
leading to his arrest.

But you should know, he's the current
acting interior minister there.

So, guess what, State Department?
I found him!

Can you mail me my $10 million,
now, please?

Don't worry,
I spend my money very wisely.

So, individuals in the Taliban
government are sanctioned,

which effectively
means the whole government is,

making it nearly impossible for banks,
businesses, charities to operate there.

Which is a massive problem.

Especially because 75% of the former
Afghan government's budget

came from foreign aid
and grants.


That was the money
that, among other things,

paid the salaries
for vital government services,

like teachers
and public sector employees.

And all that aid
disappeared almost immediately.

As one expert has said,
"No country in the world

could withstand a sharp cutoff
of that aid".

And it's affected everything.
In healthcare, for instance,

the World Bank and other organizations
immediately froze $600 million in aid.

Which left doctors
in a very difficult position.

This state hospital
in the heart of Kabul

has not received funding
since the Taliban takeover.

We don't have
any medicine here.

We had antibiotics,
painkillers, and vitamins here,

but it's empty now.

What's your budget now
in total for the department?

For the total department,
we didn't have,

just only for our salary
we have budget,

but for other item,
we didn't have any budget.

- You mean your budget is zero?
- The budget is zero, yeah.

Yeah. Zero.

It is hard to imagine how a hospital
can function with a budget of zero,

unless every exam room is just
a paper bag and a sign that says,

"Yell what hurts into this bag.
Then leave."

And it gets even worse,

because U.S. also froze Afghanistan's
central bank assets held in America,

amounting to around "$7 billion."

That is money typically used to do
things like keep the currency stable,

finance imports, and provide
money to the banking system.

The U.S. froze these assets to prevent
the Taliban from accessing them,

but that also kneecapped
the country's entire banking system,

especially as Afghanistan doesn't have
the ability to print its own currency.

All of this led
to a literal cash shortage,

where even Afghans who do have
money in the bank can't access it.

So, there've been massive lines
and waits just to get money out.

At some banks, withdrawing cash has
reportedly taken three days or more.

And that has brought the country
to an unusual state of affairs.

This is a unique
humanitarian crisis.

This is a situation
where food is technically available,

but there isn't enough liquidity
in the economy

and enough availability
of paper currency to purchase food.

Food which is available.

Right, and that is awful.
Food, but no money to buy it with.

It's like a lyric
from Alanis Morissette's "Ironic"

in that it's fundamentally
not ironic at all,

and I'm sure Dave Coulier
is still somehow to blame.

Things are very grim in Afghanistan.
Its population is young.

Nearly half
are under the age of 15,

and UNICEF has warned that over a
million severely malnourished children

will be at risk of death without
emergency treatment this year.

And because many Afghans have
nowhere to turn for food or for money,

families have been forced
to make some harrowing choices.

40-year-old Ghulam Hazrat
sold his kidney for around $2,300.

My conscience
didn't allow me to go and beg.

I said, "Let's trust God",
and decided to sell my kidney

so that I could feed my daughters
for some time.

It's true.
He sold his kidney to feed his kids,

a desperate decision
that you can make precisely once.

That's actually an increasingly
common decision in Afghanistan.

And it's not just that.

Families are also selling
some of their children,

so that they can feed the others.

Which is unimaginably heartbreaking

So, clearly, the people of Afghanistan
are in dire need of help.

And the current president has,
at times,

been alarmingly blithe
about the situation there.

Do I feel badly
what's happening to,

as a consequence
of the incompetence of the Taliban?

Yes, I do.

But I feel badly also about the fistulas
that are taking place in eastern Congo.

I feel badly about a whole range
of things around the world,

that we can't solve every problem.

First, I hate to be
a Marian the Librarian,

but you don't "feel badly",
you feel bad.

Feel is a linking verb,
and you're modifying it incorrectly.

Marian out.

And it's pretty disheartening to see

our official foreign policy boil down
to, "Sorry champ, can't win 'em all!"

Especially when the U.S.
is so directly responsible

for so many problems
in Afghanistan.

And in eastern Congo, by the way,
but that is a different story.

The Biden administration
will point out

that it's begun issuing
sanctions exemptions

to allow the free flow
of some humanitarian aid.

And it's sent hundreds of millions
in relief to Afghanistan,

more than any other country,
which is absolutely true.

It's also true that they have done
that in the face of stiff opposition

from some on the right,
who argue in pretty strong terms

against any kind of assistance,
and for one particular reason.

Obviously, there's humanitarian
suffering all over this planet, right?

I'm not in favor of giving money

that I'm pretty confident will end up
in the hands of the Taliban.

We should not give them
one red cent

until such time
as we can demonstrate

that they have actually done
what they said they would do,

which is to separate themselves
from terror.

Mike Pompeo and deepfake
Blake Shelton are clearly assholes.

Although I will say,
for even non-assholes,

it is natural to be concerned
about the prospect of U.S. aid money

going to the Taliban.

But a couple of things
you should know.

For years now, charities
have been able to find ways to work

with, through, or around the Taliban,
to help ordinary Afghan citizens.

They had to do that,
because even when the U.S. was there,

the Taliban effectively still
controlled large parts of the country.

And for people
at some of those groups,

like the Afghanistan director at the
International Rescue Committee,

the fact that they are financially
constrained from helping people now

is pretty frustrating.

I think a lot of people will say, "We
don't want to see aid go to Afghanistan

because we don't want to give money
to the Taliban.

That's an extremist group."

You want to make 38 million people
suffer because of a few thousand?

That math doesn't work for me.

Right. That math
doesn't work for me either.

And that is saying something,
because look at me.

I look like math in human form.

I look like a Pok?mon whose final
evolution is a graphing calculator.

I look like an algebra textbook left me
on the doorstep of an orphanage.

I look like what Matt Damon's
character in "Good Will Hunting"

should have looked like.

So, when I say that math doesn't work,
you better fucking believe me.

So, there is a strong case
to be made

for finding ways to get
humanitarian aid to Afghanistan.

But that is not all it needs.

In the long term,

no amount of emergency
relief can stand in for healthcare,

an education system,
or a functioning economy.

As one report said, "humanitarian
efforts are bandages, not cures".

You can't just keep
applying them forever.

And right now, there are some
worrying signs of donor fatigue,

with contributions from the
international community drying up,

even as nearly 20 million people,
almost half Afghanistan's population,

are experiencing high
and critical levels of food insecurity.

A more sustainable way to help them
is through development aid,

building long-term solutions,

like investing in healthcare
and education salaries,

or helping build
infrastructure through

"investments in irrigation
and water management"

in areas affected by the drought.

But the tricky thing with that is,

that really does require some form
of engagement with the Taliban.

There are mechanisms
to try and ensure

that they don't end up
benefiting financially,

but admittedly,
none of them are perfect.

And the idea of the Taliban
getting one red cent

is obviously hard to swallow.

Especially because,
despite the Taliban's new

"live, laugh, love" vibe,

they've continued to remind us
how terrible they are,

not only with their heinous treatment
of women,

but also with the recent confirmation

that they were harboring
the leader of Al Qaeda in a safe house.

But withholding all forms of aid until
the Taliban either give in or collapse

just is not a viable strategy.

Because, for one thing, who knows
how long that will take, if ever?

And for another, while you're waiting,
potentially millions will starve.

Listen to that midwife from earlier,
who is no fan of the Taliban,

explain what she thinks
of that logic.

Your sanctions on the Taliban

will kill us faster than the violation
of our rights by the Taliban.

A girl dies from hunger
and a mother either sells her daughter

because of hunger
or from pressure to marry her by force.

The issue of their education
and literacy

is meaningless
when you're dying from hunger.

Yeah, she's right.
There's no two ways around it.

This is a crisis
at the most fundamental level.

And thankfully, there've been
small steps in the right direction.

The U.S. is working on a proposal

to release some of the billions
of dollars of frozen money

into a trust fund that the Taliban
themselves can't access,

which could still help
inject some cash and stability

into the country's financial system,
if it happens.

The UN and the World Bank
both have initiatives in the works

to try and bridge the gap between
emergency humanitarian assistance

and longer-term development aid,

as long as they're able
to get adequate funding.

And for the final time,

I do get the broad worries about
how sending money to Afghanistan

might inadvertently help
the Taliban.

But I'd argue,
the key question here isn't just,

"What happens if we send
Afghanistan money and aid?"

It's, "What happens if we don't?"

And we know the answer to that:
millions of innocent Afghans

will suffer and die under
a government they did not choose.

The reality is, there is no one simple
solution here that is without risks.

But 38 million people's lives
are at stake,

and doing nothing
would be yet another colossal,

if I may borrow a military
intelligence term here,

swing and a miss.

And now, this!

And Now?

Shepard Smith Has the Best
Story Intros in the Business.

With Geico, in 15 minutes, you can save
15% or more on car insurance.

Or, in 15 minutes, you could have sex
in a car and get an STD.

The poop gave him away.

Miami police have identified
an armed robbery suspect

with the help of some dog doo.

Do you know
what gasoline tastes like?

If not, you probably
weren't poor in the '70s.

Where are sharks born?

Is hangry a real thing?

Some things are just better dead.

The next roach motel
could be your house.

Florida, there's
an ice cream problem.

He's a 49-year-old snake collector,
or he was.

When your body's given up,
taken the last breath,

what do you want your loved ones
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I'm thinking dump it in a hole
in the backyard of my childhood home,

in Mississippi,
and just cover it up with dirt.

That's illegal.

Moving on. Finally, I want to talk
about artificial intelligence, or AI.

It's a technology which, despite posing
a clear existential threat to humanity,

we currently manage to keep
under our control

using pictures of traffic lights.

But, make no mistake, once the
machines learn how to recognize them,

we are all fucked.

I wanted to talk about AI
because there's a new popular trend

that you may have heard about.

It seems like everyone
is talking about these websites

that use artificial intelligence
to generate images.

It's all because of a tool
named DALL-E,

which comes from a start-up
named OpenAI.

You type in a description
of something you want to see,

and a computer
creates realistic images to match.

The fun part is, you can be really
elaborate with your descriptions.

The system was trained
with 650 million pictures,

and the results are some of the best
we've seen from computers yet.

Yeah, AI image generators.

There are a number of them out there,
DALL-E, Craiyon, and Midjourney.

And with each one,
you simply type in a text prompt,

and it'll create images
for you in around a minute.

So, for instance, you might type in,
let's say "roast beef superhero".

What does that look like? Is it
a superhero made of roast beef?

Is it a superhero that saves
roast beef? Is it both?

I have no idea.

But here is what Midjourney's AI
created based on that phrase.

And I have to say,
well played, robot!

There's the fantastic roast beef
superhero logo,

the mild-mannered roast beef hero
with legs for arms and no lower body,

the headless roast beef hero
holding a roast beef cane of justice,

and the helmet-wearing
America-shaped cut of roast beef

that appears to have taken
a shit on the floor.

All four of those images are now
my favorite roast beef superheroes.

Marvel, if you're watching, there's
Phase Five of the MCU right there.

It is genuinely fascinating, not just
to see images come to life in seconds,

but also to see
how AI interprets these prompts.

Poking around on Midjourney's Discord,
you'll discover things like

this delightful frog bumblebee,

or "Judi Dench
fighting a centaur on the moon",

or what the program decided to do

when fed the two-word prompt,
"goose pilates".

Which is,
I think we can all agree, excellent.

You can kill an afternoon searching to
see what images others have requested.

Which is what one member
of our staff, Julia, was doing

when she made a fateful decision.

Because she started putting in the
names of various late-night hosts,

like James Corden, which brought
back eight search results,

including "James Corden
flies a plane"

and "trail cam footage
of James Corden eating teeth".

And I know it can be hard
to see him do that,

but there is one where he eats
teeth with Paul McCartney,

and it's actually very moving.

Interestingly, for most hosts,
there weren't a ton of results.

There were 14 for Conan O'Brien,
eight for Colbert,

three apiece for Trevor Noah
and Jimmy Kimmel.

But here's where things
got a little bit weird.

Because then she put in my name.

And would you like to know
how many results came back?

It's 493.

And look, on one level, I get it.
I get it.

I do have a face that's already
basically a boardwalk caricature.

I've got what carnival artists
refer to as "a real softball".

But nearly 500 results is a lot.

And it's not just the volume,
it's the specificity of the prompts.

There's "John Oliver
in Victorian-era dress",

"John Oliver bursting out of a can
of Del Monte green beans,"

"John Oliver as an amoeba
viewed through a microscope,"

and "John Oliver commanding a
horde of elves to charge a potato."

All of these deserve to be
in the Louvre,

and at least one of them depicts
an actual nightmare that I've had.

But there is one Midjourney user
who's gone above and beyond,

a user by the name
of Postpoopzoomies.

And I won't pretend I loved
saying those words,

but I think you'll agree that their AI
creations are simply mind-blowing.

For instance,
there's "John Oliver as Mona Lisa,"

which is striking,

though I believe may be enough
to be prosecuted as a felony in Italy.

Then there's
"John Oliver is a perfect egg",

and "John Oliver is an egg
with a bad attitude

so don't mess with him or he will do
to you what he did to Humpty Dumpty."

That's just one of many images

where Postpoopzoomies
seemingly tried to tell a whole story.

There's also
"John Oliver at brunch with the girls

and he's laughing
because Debbie told a funny joke".

Which is remarkable,

because that's exactly what I look like
when Debbie does that!

Or how about
"John Oliver as a cowboy

with a cowboy hat so large
nobody has any respect for him."

Which is really amazing.
I could not tell you

what size a cowboy hat has to be
to instantly dissolve respect,

but that computer was able
to calculate the dimensions perfectly.

And honestly:
bravo to you, Postpoopzoomies.

I did have some questions
about your process,

until I found this post from you,
which read simply,

"I got high and blasted
a million John Olivers."

Which definitely tracks!

But the true masterpiece
on Midjourney

is a long series of images I like
to think of as The Cabbage Saga,

created by Postpoopzoomies
and another account, Margaret.

The story starts
as all good stories do, humbly,

with the image of, "John Oliver
is very confused in a cabbage field."

From there, we move to "John Oliver
growing cabbages in his apartment,"

a hobby that evidently
takes off for me,

given that we then see
"John Oliver gives a TED Talk

on proper cabbage
growth techniques."

Which, to be fair, is still better
than this real TED Talk called

"How to tie your shoes".

Then things start escalating,

because next we see
"John Oliver throwing a cabbage"

and "John Oliver throwing a cabbage
at a child" for some reason,

and then, in a big plot twist, "John
Oliver having dinner with a cabbage

because he realizes
maybe he judged them too soon."

That's a subtext that comes
out of absolutely nowhere,

but it makes much more sense
when you see

"John Oliver
looking lovingly at his cabbage

having realized
that he's falling in love."

Followed by, "Does John Oliver love
the cabbage? Yes, yes he does."

And from there,
it's on to, inevitably,

"John Oliver and the cabbage
are getting married!"

And interestingly,
it's at this point

that the AI for the very first time
seems to struggle with a prompt.

Because that seems to be an image
of me getting married to myself,

and the cabbage
somehow being there as a witness.

But that's not
what this story's about, is it?

And I don't know what this computer
is struggling to understand

about the very simple concept
of a man wanting to marry a cabbage.

It's not complicated, computer.

This is why we're not letting you
drive cars yet.

But the story is still not done.

And I have to warn you,
it takes something of a darker turn.

Because the next thing we see is,
and this made me gasp out loud,

"No! John Oliver dreamed about being
hungry and ate the cabbage in sleep!"

Which is absolutely mortifying,
and understandably followed by,

"John Oliver crying
into half a cabbage,"

and "John Oliver
will never be happy again,

his heart is broken
but his stomach is full,"

which is both tragic
and somehow beautiful.

And if you're wondering what I did
with the other half of the cabbage,

that is made clear by the final prompt,
which is simply,

"John Oliver pouring
cabbage ashes into the ocean."

And what a journey
we all just went on.

This story is a true testament
to life's highs and lows,

showing how poetic, lovely, and
weirdly full of cabbage life can be.

There's really only one thing that
bothers me about all of this, though.

And that is that wedding image.
Take a closer look at it right now.

The AI program
nailed all of its other assignments,

but this image,
the key image in the whole story,

the pivot point to the tragedy
that follows,

was somehow
beyond its capabilities.

Which seems like such a shame.
This story deserved better.

Postpoopzoomies deserved better,
as did Margaret.

We all deserve better.
And that's when it hit me.

There's really only one way
to remedy the fact

that we were cheated out
of that key wedding image,

and that is for me to provide it
for you now.

But not through graphics.
No, that would be far too easy.

I'm thinking more of a full,
vibrant tableau

that brings it all home.

So, please, come with me.

'Cause I'm about to marry
a fucking cabbage.

Do you, John, take this cabbage
to be your lawfully wedded spouse,

to have and to hold
from this day forward,

in sickness and in health,
until death do you part?

I do, Steve, I do. I do.

And do you promise
not to eat it in your sleep?

I'll try my very best,

but I think we both know
what might well happen.


By the powers vested in me,

I now pronounce you
man and cabbage.

You may kiss the cabbage.

No! Not again!