A quote from an article in today's The State:
“The current economy,” Sanford said, “is a total gut-check of where we are as a civilization.”
Oh please. Stop the drama. This quote is from a man who governs a state that ranks the lowest in about every key indicator of what a civilization is all about. This man needs to cut the grandiose hand-waving crap and govern the state of South Carolina - and represent it's people (and not just his neighbors) the best that he can (which could be what the problem is: this is all he is capable of doing).
civ·i·li·za·tion (sv-l-zshn)n.1. An advanced state of intellectual, cultural, and material development in human society, marked by progress in the arts and sciences, the extensive use of record-keeping, including writing, and the appearance of complex political and social institutions.2. The type of culture and society developed by a particular nation or region or in a particular epoch: Mayan civilization; the civilization of ancient Rome.3. The act or process of civilizing or reaching a civilized state.4. Cultural or intellectual refinement; good taste.5. Modern society with its conveniences: returned to civilization after camping in the mountains.