“We are the lost civilization”

The notoriously apolitical David Letterman on a lengthy rant about global warming.  Paul Shaffer’s inane little noises of assent add a surreal touch.  Here’s a partial transcript:

Until we get the carbon dioxide out of the atmosphere, we are screwed.  We are walking dead people.  We are the lost civilization.  You’re looking at us right here.  Time to go, the cab is coming…. I’ll tell you why it’s too late.  We’ve had no leadership… nobody has stepped forward…. We have to find alternative forms of energy.  On the other hand, I don’t even know why I’m talking about this, because it’s TOO LATE.  We are DEAD MEAT.   The Republicans have taken climate change out of their platform.  As far as they’re concerned, everything’s fine.  “96 degrees in March, yeah, just how we like it!”  We are so screwed….

I adored Letterman in his early days in the 1980s.  I eventually cooled on him when the witty, sarcastic irony that had seemed so pointed started to seem to turn into a more predictable show-biz attitude.  I used to feel there was a real edge of absurdist critique there, but the “critique” part became harder to glimpse through all the celebrity interviews and so on.

Anyway, I like it when he surprises me.  I do still think he’s an intriguingly weird & smart guy who has never been 100% swallowed up by celebrity and television culture.

And a Hoosier, of course.  Wiki: “According to the Ball State Daily News, he originally had wanted to attend Indiana University, but his grades weren’t good enough, so he decided to attend Ball State University in Muncie, Indiana.”  I wonder if anyone has ever used that fact to argue against IU’s raising/tightening admissions standards.

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