Transcript from The Wild World of Sports:

Announcer: OK, ladies and gentlemen, we’re ready with the highlights from today’s “Psychological Disability of the Year” competition. Let’s start with this clip from shortly after the opening ceremony:

George: This should be pretty exciting. The winners from the last two years, the global warming deniers, are really feeling the pressure from this year’s upstarts, the Sarah Palin fanatics. What do you think, Patti, can the global warming deniers add a third year to their winning streak?

Patti: I wouldn’t count on it, George. Those Sarah Palin fanatics are really on a roll! Their psychological disorder has just been recognized by the American Psychological Association, and not only that, but the APA’s recognition is being contested by the American Psychiatric Association, who are claiming first dibs! That’s the kind of controversy that gets the attention of the judges here at the Psychological Disability of the Year award.

George: I know what you mean! Being so nutty that your nuttiness is generating news is what it’s all about. And then there was that Worst Mother in America award that Sarah Palin won a couple of months ago, that’s really motivating her adherents to push the envelope in showing Sarah the kind of devotion that reeks of dependency-related neurosis. So the next couple of hours should be quite interesting.

Patti: Right, although I wouldn’t go quite so far as to write the global warming deniers off completely, George. They’re pushing their conspiracy theories harder than ever, and clinging to their interpretation of some scandal about leaked emails. And then there were those winter storms; they’re waving lots of posters with pictures of snowmen and so on.

Announcer: So that was the situation at the start of today’s competition – it looked to be a fairly well-defined duel between the global warming deniers and the Sarah Palin fanatics. Now, that would have been a stimulating contest, but then something totally unexpected happened! Here’s a clip from about two hours later:

Patti: OK, just got back from a quick tour down on the competition floor, and the consensus is that the Sarah Palin fanatics are going to knock the global warming deniers off their perch, probably already during the next half hour. That’ll be a real upset, considering how new their psychological affliction is, don’t you think George? George?

George: There’s something happening down there, over in that corner. Can you see it? More and more of the judges are gravitating over there. Who are those people?

Patti: Uh, let’s see the program. Oh, it’s the torture lovers! Yeah, I can see what you mean, George. But the torture lovers? They’ve been around since forever, especially after 9/11, but they’ve always been down around number seven or eight or so.

George: There’s definitely something going on down there! I can see their spokesperson, Liz Cheney, she’s leading the torture lover team in ever more strident chants about torturing everyone who isn’t a true-blue American torture lover! “You’re with us or you’re waterboarded!”, I think they’re screaming.

Patti: But surely, the torture lovers can’t really think they can … oh, wow, I’ve never seen that before in all my years of covering the Psychological Disability of the Year competitions! That’s the editor of the New York Times! They’ve got the executive editor of the New York Times endorsing their psychological disorder!

George: Right, I’m getting some information in my earpiece now – yes, Mr. Bill Keller has gone on record, saying that torture loving trumps journalistic integrity at the New York Times! That’s a real feather in the caps of the torture lovers! Never before in the history of the Psychological Disability of the Year award has “the newspaper of record” come out in support of one of the contestants! What do you think Patti, is this a game changer?

Patti: Could be, could be, but I doubt it’ll get them higher than a number three spot, or maybe even second place, but not the winner’s … wait, wait, is that who I think it is?

George: It sure is! The torture lovers are trotting out Dubya! Yes, it’s former President George W. Bush, looking a bit confused as usual, but he’s definitely endorsing the torture lovers in this competition for the top spot among America’s most talked-about mental aberrations. “Yeah, we waterboarded Khalid Sheikh Mohammed … I’d do it again to save lives.” – There, he’s repeated what he said last month. This has got to be an upset! A former president of the United States and the editor of the New York Times, both lining up behind the torture lovers!

Patti: Actually, you can include a former vice-president as well. The hand-outs from the torture lovers point out that Liz Cheney is also representing her father, who is too sick to attend in person.

Announcer: So there it was! A huge, and quite unexpected, upset in this year’s Psychological Disability of the Year competition! As you know, the final results were; the torture lovers in first place, the Sarah Palin fanatics in second place, and the global warming deniers in third place. Here’s a final clip with some post-awards interviews:

Patti: I’m here with Jeffery Doverdown, leader of the global warming deniers. So what’s your reaction, Jeffery, to slipping from first place to third place among the most interesting psychological disorders?

Jeffery Doverdown: We’ll be back! Sarah Palin is just a flash in the pan, and Obama is making things tough for the torture-obsessed, so I’m predicting that we’ll be back on top already next year. We global warming deniers are in the psychological disability game for the long run. We’ll still be going strong decades from now, yeah, centuries from now! Nothing can stop our kind of craziness! I don’t care if this planet ends up as a lifeless desert, we’ll still be here, in our nuclear-powered air conditioned bio-habitats, and we’ll still be denying global warming!

Patti: Thanks Jeffery, see you again next year.

George: Wow, you’ve got to admire that kind of dedication! Now, we were hoping for a statement from a spokesperson for the Palinites, but they all seem to have packed it up and gone home.

Patti: Well, they’ll probably be back next year. But now, for the winners! As you can see, I’m here with the spokesperson for the torture lovers, Ms. Elizabeth Cheney. May I call you Liz?

Liz Cheney: Of course, of course. Oh, I’m so excited! May I say something to daddy? I’m sure he’s watching. Hi daddy-waddy, how about this? Are you proud of your little Lizzy-girl, or what? Ohhh, I can’t tell you how tingly I’m feeling – that’s what torture loving does, it gives you these zingy little tingles when you think about what horrible – ugh – what disgusting and horrible things can be done to the human body. And now the New York Times has endorsed us! As long as the bastards don’t trick us and die, it’s not forbidden! Whee!

Patti: Uh, that’s nice for you Liz. So I think I’ll just hand coverage back to the studio, before I throw up.

Announcer: Thanks Patti – I can understand – uh – turn that damned camera off, I’m going to …

So here I am in my declining years, looking back on my life so far, getting nostalgic and so on.

Thinking about the things that life has taught me.

Unfortunately, I have to agree with what they say, that nostalgia isn’t what it used to be.

And for some reason I have a line from that song “I did it my way” (God, what a stupid song!) running through my head.

“Regrets, I’ve had a few …”

In particular, I’m thinking about my dear old mother who used to warn me, to tell me to beware of all the wild women who would lead me astray.

That must be one of my greatest regrets.

That those wild women my mother used to talk about, they never showed up!

Jun 30, 3:09 PM EDT

BREAKING: American Psychological Association to add “Sarah Palin Veneration Syndrome (SPVS)” to its catalog of psychological disorders
By George Middleford and Susanne Chisow
Associated Press Writers

TAMPA BAY (AP) – Two days ahead of its annual nation-wide conference, the American Psychological Association’s president Mindy Shullman has pre-announced that the APA will be adding “Sarah Palin Veneration Syndrome (SPVS)” to its definitive catalog of officially-recognized psychological disorders. This has already led to a certain amount of controversy, not only due to the political implications but also because of long-simmering disputes between the American Psychological Association and the American Psychiatric Association.

Mindy Shullman, head of the APA for less than two years, was adamant that “Sarah Palin Veneration Syndrome” has been sufficiently researched by the APA’s top clinical psychologists to warrant inclusion in the APA catalog. “We’ve been monitoring these kooks for over a year, and although their symptoms resemble many other kinds of loser-related-hero-worship disorders, it’s sufficiently unique (and repulsive, if I may be frank) to justify adding it to our amazingly complete catalog of American nuttiness!”, gushed Ms. Shullman in response to suggestions that the APA was being premature in its move.

This news has been met with massive criticism from followers of Sarah Palin. “Just the latest example of the vicious campaign being waged by the opponents of Sarah Palin!” is a typical comment. Sarah Palin’s former spokesperson, Meg Stapleton, remarked, “They should call themselves the American Psycho Association!”

Mindy Shullman has revealed some of the identifying signs that lead to a diagnosis of SPVS. “We’re typically talking about people who are not all that bright, people who have experienced a lack of success, which they attribute to being out-maneuvered by smarter, better educated people. Also people who have had personal failures due to a weakness of character, or just bad luck. These are people who can subconsciously identify strongly with Sarah Palin. Remember, most of this is going on at the subconscious level – these people to a large extent can not themselves explain their compulsion. Anyway, their subconscious sees Sarah Palin, and sees that she’s not very smart, she’s not very well educated, she lies and cheats, and yet she’s supremely self-confident, and now she’s rich and famous! Their subconscious is telling them, ‘that’s you, if you’d just been a bit luckier, just believed more in yourself’. They think Sarah Palin is just like them, and she’s a winner! She’s showing up all the smart, successful people who have been their bane.”

As for the very strong push-back by sufferers of SPVS to criticism of Sarah Palin, Ms. Shullman explained that this is due to their very high level of personal identification with Sarah Palin. “These nut cases identify so strongly with Sarah Palin that they consider any criticism of Sarah Palin to be not only an attack on their idol, but also a personal attack on them. Whenever someone (rightly, by the way) points out that Sarah Palin is an idiot, they respond as if you were calling them an idiot – which actually isn’t all that far off the mark for most of these people.”

Turning to the question of what the future holds for sufferers of SPVS, Mindy Shullman was less sure of the prognosis section of the APA’s detailed description of “Sarah Palin Veneration Syndrome”. “We have placed an 85% probability on what we call the ‘crash and burn scenario’. Someone as seriously flawed as Sarah Palin is unlikely to continue to be successful for very long. Something will go horribly wrong for her, and her career will come to a screeching halt. At that point most of the people with SPVS will go through a period of mourning, and then find some new celebrity that they can hero-worship. A few will descend into the nether world of letting anger take over their lives, and become adherents of some conspiracy theory as to who did what to cause Sarah Palin to go down in flames. But, as you can see, we’ve put an 85% probability on the whole crash-and-burn scenario – there are several other possible outcomes, but they are all very unlikely.”

Confronted with accusations that the American Psychological Association had stolen the entire “Sarah Palin Veneration Syndrome” research and description from the American Psychiatric Association (who also calls itself the APA), Ms. Shullman became very defensive. “No way! Those stupid psychiatrists are just jealous because we published first! They’re sore losers, with the emphasis on ‘losers’. Ha, those neurotic Freud-fanatics weren’t even going to use the correct name for this sickness; they were going to call it ‘Sarah Palin Adoration Disorder (SPAD)’! What a bunch of perverts!”

Professor Dr. Sherman D. Weizmann, president of the American Psychiatric Association, was ecstatic when informed of this statement by Mandy Shullman. “Ach zo, vi haf the proof that they are thieves! The name ‘Sarah Palin Adoration Disorder’ vas a secret! It vas not public! Mz. Shullman, who is a dummkopf, vil meet our lawyers very soon!”

As for Sarah Palin herself, she has chosen to shrug off the entire question as to whether or not her loyal fans are suffering from some kind of mental disorder. “They love me, and that makes them happy, so what’s the problem? I do feel sorry for those who are not able to get their mind into the wonderful feeling of how much loving me can change everything for the better and ensure energy independence in a way that makes drilling for oil a priority for all true Americans who hate socialism and the Obama takeover of our great nation … uh, sorry, what was the question again?”

© 2010 The Associated Press. All rights preserved. This material may be published, broadcast, rewritten, retweeted, redistributed or otherwise ignored.

Open letter to the Pakistani authorities in charge of this nonsense: “Pakistan scours Google, other sites for blasphemy”.

Please Pakistan, block my blog! Nobody ever comes here anyway, and maybe I could get some traffic if my blog ends up on some list of banned blogs. All that attraction of “forbidden fruits”, you know …

Oh, you’re only blocking sites that are blasphemous? OK, how about this:

Jesus Puts His Money in the Bank of Montreal

(music: Battle Hymn of the Republic,

Jesus puts His money in the Bank of Montreal,
Jesus puts His money in the Bank of Montreal,
Jesus puts His money in the Bank of Montreal,
Jesus saves! Jesus saves! Jesus saves!

Hmm, that’s not blasphemous enough for you? OK, how about this one?

Plastic Jesus

(Here’s a YouTube version with Paul Newman:

I don’t care if it rains or freezes
‘Long as I got my plastic Jesus
Riding on the dashboard of my car!
Through my trials and tribulations
And my travels through the nations
With my plastic Jesus I’ll go far!

I don’t care if the night is scary
As long as I got the Virgin Mary
Sittin’ on the dashboard of my car!
She don’t slip and She don’t slide
‘Cause Her ass is magnetized
Sittin’ on the dashboard of my car!

Oh, I see, I’ve got to be blasphemous about Muhammad to make it with you guys? No problem, I can be an “equal opportunity” blasphemer. Here’s something I wrote myself (well, just the words, not the music):

We’ll be Drawing Old Muhammad on the Wall

(music: She’ll be coming ’round the mountain,

We’ll be drawing old Muhammad on the wall,
We’ll be drawing old Muhammad on the wall,
For even Muslims must admit it,
You don’t need a special permit,
To be drawing old Muhammad on the wall.

We’ll be spraying old Muhammad on the wall,
We’ll be spraying old Muhammad on the wall,
With graffiti that’s persisting,
We will show that we’re insisting,
On our right to spray The Prophet on the wall.

We’ll be painting old Muhammad on the wall,
We’ll be painting old Muhammad on the wall,
Now some claim that He’s angelic,
So we’ll paint Him psychedelic,
We sure hope He likes His pictures on the wall.

We’ll be etching old Muhammad on the wall,
We’ll be etching old Muhammad on the wall,
‘Cause we need to make a stand,
Or our rights they will get banned,
And we’ll find ourselves lined up against the wall.

(For some background information as to why I wrote this, see here.)

Now, will you please block my blog?

By the way, I’d just like to mention that I don’t have anything much against Jesus or Muhammad. Or against Christians or Muslims, in general.

But to any religious fanatic who thinks that your religious beliefs trump my freedom of speech, here’s what I think: You can kiss my shiny white atheist ass!

The recent media coverage of Mike Huckabee’s remark that homosexual sex is “icky” made me think of a story from my youth.

The young boy asked his father one of those questions that makes being a parent so problematic: “Dad, is sex messy?”

To which the father, after due deliberation, replied, “Only when it’s done right, my son.”

Hello please, to all my American friends! My name is Henri, and I am sending to you from Paris this little message to help you to overcome your lack of good understanding about football.

Football is life! Football is what makes the world go around! I am what you would call a crazy fan, and I am watching football on the television as much as is possible, even as I am writing this message, and it is to this ending that I am feeling the need of clearing up the confusion in the United States about the sublime game of football!

Now when I say “football” I am of course talking about real football, the international game of football, that is played by everyone everywhere. Now I know that you in the United States have another game (if such a word can be used for such an activity) that you call “football”, and this is what is so saddening for me.

Please excuse me my American friends, but I am feeling you are making such a mistake. You are talking about American “exceptionalisme”, and I am feeling I must tell you that it is true, your “American football” is exceptionale, it is exceptionale stupid and exceptionale brutal and exceptionale crazy! The ball, it is not round! That is why it is not rolling good, and you have to carry it around the area with your hands! And the costumes! How can you call it a sport when you must wear so much pads and helmets like you are in the military and dismounting bombs!

But yes, I do understand that you are loving your “American football” like I am loving real football, and so I will not be saying more bad things about how your football is not a good game. But there is something else that I must be telling you, something even more saddening to me.

How can you be making real football contra “American football” a political fighting? That is even more so crazy! Football is not political, it rises above political and is what brings people together! People can be in unagreement politically but they can play football together and they can in football be brothers and it is all so beautiful!

Only the Taliban and some peoples on the American political right are making football a political thing. In Somalia the Taliban is shooting people who are watching the World Cup on television, and in the United States the famous rightist blogger Mr. Stacy McCain is saying “… conservatives don’t hate soccer because we hate brown people. We hate soccer because we hate liberals.”

Oh, oh, oh, this is making me so saddened! How can anyone be feeling like that about football? It is true that I have often thought that the American political right and the Taliban have much in common in their fanatisism and their desire to impose their religion on others. But how can anyone be so depraved as to hate football? It must surely be a sign of mental blockages from a lack of love and understanding.

Please, to the Taliban and to the American political right, I am calling out to you! Please open your hearts and your minds to the good things in this life! Please, try to embrace football, just like you so clearly embrace each other’s ideals!