Like Pieter, I never wanted Commments, at all. I wanted to use WordPress as a simple way to Categorize and organize my materials online, without interactivity.
The lack of a way to actually disable the Comment system was not a problem, at first. Now, the comment-spammers have found me, and it's a problem.
I know the spirit of WP basically aims at interactivity, including something like Comments. However, it is also clear that a considerable interest exists, to use the WordPress software for non-interactive purposes, like myself & Pieter.
The fact that a crimimal community exists to exploit & abuse the WP Comments-system means that virtually everyone who wants a non-interactive facility will eventually find themselves 'engaged' with the Comment-criminals.
This is unacceptable for me. My e-mail is being pounded, I must make repeated trips to Admin to clean out piles of foolishness. No way. The current setup 'plays into' the spammers, gives them too good a reason to stay in the 'game'. I'm not going to do this.
I am in the process of shutting down my WordPress website, now that I have satisfied myself there is actually no way to really turn off the Comment system.
WordPress: You guys should have an up-front, one-stop check-box: "Turn Off the Commment System Completely". You are losing people because this can't be done.