Carlin is an uncompromising idealist pushing the limits with his atheism and hatred of advertisers, politicians, CEOs, and dumbass people in general, because he senses that there is something far better out there, something far smarter and nobler. Heʼs Diogenes walking the street with his lantern looking for an honest and truthful man, and bemoaning not being able to find one. Thatʼs his way of striking back against the lunacy that is mankind. He doesnʼt think that kinder gentler ways of preaching his idealism will make any noticeable difference, and even doubts that his own “crys in the wilderness” will make a helluva lot of difference either. So, he speaks with the boldness of a prophet, like Bill, like all prophets, lashing out with the most extreme hyperbole imaginable, becoming what Bill would call, “the leading member of the people who hate people party.”
Mark Twain and Kurt Vonnegut each put it their own way too, and were leading members of that party, and each has helped raise up generations of folks like me who are at least charter members of that party. (My latest work in progress is titled, Chicken Soup for the Damned Soul.)
I donʼt mind Carlin having a home in the desert, it befits a prophet of his standing. I also suspect that like a lot of prophets he would love to become a martyr by saying something that pisses somebody off so much they kill him. That way heʼll feel vindicated that he at least “got to somebody” in the end. It sure beats dying in a sterile hospital environment, having people see your last pulse pass up your carotid artery through the translucent skin in your neck.
Or as Cioran once put it in reference to Jesus, “He has revenged himself on all of humanity by not simply dying of old age on a divan.”
Iʼm not inclined to rate Bill and Carlinʼs humor and place one above the other because I like both. I also like Kinison and Emo Philips and Eddie Izzard and Woody Allen and Twain and Voltaire.