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Doug Clark: Backsliding WSP earns B.S. badge

In the wake of an embarrassing scandal where eight troopers tried to use bogus diplomas to get raises in pay, the Washington State Patrol has unveiled a new motto.

“WSP – We’re in a Trooper Stupor!”

The new slogan will be unveiled soon on television and radio as well as in the newsletters of many of America’s finest phony online colleges.

Patrol officials hope the public relations campaign will answer the question many Washingtonians have been asking:

If brains were dynamite, would those eight troopers have enough power to blow their noses?

(The answer is no.)

Yes, it’s been a rocky road for the WSP.

In a breathtaking display of spinelessness, patrol brass flip-flopped from their earlier plan to boot the troopers into the unemployment lines.

Now all is forgiven. The troopers, according to news reports, will receive three- to 10-day suspensions without pay.

Plus honorary bachelor’s degrees in slimeology from Whatsamatta U.

After an investigation, the State Patrol has now concluded that the eight troopers weren’t really trying to deceive anyone.

Of course not.

How could trained enforcers of the law know that Harvard doesn’t have a satellite MySpace campus?

Or that June isn’t half off on doctorates month?

Or that you can’t get a college degree without doing any homework?

Now that we know that you can wear a WSP badge and be dumber than dryer lint, I’ve come up with some helpful ideas that can be used the next time Smokey Bear pulls you over on a highway.

Scenario One:

DRIVER – “What’s wrong, officer?”

TROOPER – “I clocked you doing 110 mph.”

DRIVER – “Oh, sir, I didn’t have any intent to speed. I actually thought the wind was just blowing the trees sideways.”

TROOPER – “Sounds reasonable. Here’s a warning.”

Scenario Two:

DRIVER – “Hey, super-duper-trooper. Wussup?”

TROOPER – “Is that marijuana I smell?”

DRIVER – “Naw. That’s basil.”

TROOPER – “You’re smoking basil?”

DRIVER – “Would you believe oregano?”

TROOPER – “I know you’d never intentionally try to deceive me. So have a nice day.”

You get the idea.

Of course, who am I to judge anyone for trying to get ahead in life through faux academics?

I, myself, have a phony college degree.

Yeah, I went to Eastern.

State Patrol spokesman Jeff DeVere (if that’s his real name) indicated in an Associated Press story that the cheaters had been away from the job so long that they needed to get recertified in firearms and driving before returning to work.

That’s rough. From what I hear, buying fake Internet firearms and driving certificates can cost almost as much as a counterfeit criminology degree.

Are these eight flunkies really so terrible?

A few years ago, I got a bogus online ministerial license so I could perform the wedding ceremony for my friends Joe and Tera.

But please don’t tell them. They still call me Padre Doug.

Doug Clark can be reached at (509) 459-5432 or