Please noble 1000+ers, free my humble comment from the depths of the low-karma peasants. For I have but 522 karma, thus I deserve to be spat on and excluded from the flawless utopia which is the HN comments section...
Absolutely. One of the benefits of the size and diversity of the HN community is that there are lots of subject matter experts in a myriad of niches that can provide useful commentary.
If it becomes dramatically harder to have a comment be seen, these people will simply stop commenting here. The idea might be that infrequent but insightful commenters will get endorsed, but not every comment a valuable commenter makes is necessarily going to get endorsed. That's going to be frustrating enough that many will decide not to bother, and the discourse will be poorer for it.
As for gaining points: given time and quality contributions (as well as winning the front-page lottery a time or two), it's possible to gain 1000 karma in a year or so, pretty easily, if you want to (and quite possibly faster). Which is as it should be: you need to make your bones.
Slashdot had the ultimate solution for our different tastes: you could configure a comment type (informative/funny/etc) modifier/threshold. You could say you wanted to see more funny replies and I could say I did not want to see them. It was a tiny bit complicated initially but I think the big impediment to adoption at other sites was the clunky UI. There is not a simple/unobtrusive way to display so many feedback options for each an every comment.
Like comedy anywhere else, really.
HN has thankfully opened up a little in regards to light humour; that part of my profile was written quite a while ago.