'Americas Got Talent': Piers Morgan Loves America AND Its Talent

Today's cuppa: cappuccino during breakfast with "Dirty Jobs" producer Dave Barsky (who came all the way down from the Valley for the Creative Arts Emmy Awards presentation tonight) at a hotel in Hollywood, where I also ran into Josh Harris of "Deadliest Catch," who's presenting awards. Good luck, Josh!

Americas_Got_Talent_Piers_Morgan.jpg Below find the full text of a syndicated story available this week featuring "America's Got Talent" judge Piers Morgan.

But first, there's the question of whether Morgan will replace Larry King in the 9 p.m. ET weekday talk-show slot on CNN.

Previously, I wrote about Morgan's philosophy of talk shows, and in recent days, reports have surfaced that visa issues may delay both King's retirement and Morgan's launch.

But, whatever happens, Morgan continues his gig on NBC. Enjoy .

He may be Irish by ethnicity and British by nationality, but Piers Morgan loves America, and over the course of several years as a judge on NBC's "America's Got Talent," currently airing Tuesdays and Wednesdays, he's gotten to see a lot of the nation and its people.

He's even written a book about his experiences, called "God Bless America : Misadventures of a Big Mouth Brit," released in 2009.

"When I used to come here as a young show-business reporter for one of the London papers, I had a warped view," Morgan says. "The only Americans I met were lawyers, entertainment agents, managers and celebrities, which is not a very good reflection of the real America . So, you end up thinking all Americans are like that, because they're the only ones you meet.

"The same way, if you're on holiday in Europe , and you see a bunch of football hooligans fighting, you could go, 'God, they're a bunch of savages.' "

As to what he's learned during his travels, Morgan says, "What a huge country this is, and so varied. As I've traveled around with ' America 's Got Talent,' I've gone to the North, South, East, West - everywhere very different.

"The common ground, I think, is that American people are very courteous in a way, I think, Brits have unfortunately become less courteous. There's a great spirit and energy about America . There's a real can-do mentality, where you don't have a social class structure. Your structure is based on achievement and people who have done well for themselves. You embrace that and encourage that.

"It's intoxicating for Brits, where, a lot of the time in Britain, it's what kind of silver spoon you were born with in your family, is how you get on.

"So it's nice, the can-do mentality. America 's not perfect, but it has a great spirit to it. Certainly if I was in trouble, I'd want to have a couple of Americans in my corner."

New this season to " America 's Got Talent" is judge Howie Mandel, who replaced David Americas_Got_Talent_Piers_Morgan_Nick_Cannon_Sharon_Osbourne_Bret_Michaels_Howie_Mandel.jpgHasselhoff in the trio that also features Morgan and his fellow "Celebrity Apprentice" alumna Sharon Osbourne.

(Photo: from left, Morgan, host Nick Cannon, Osbourne, guest performer Bret Michaels, Mandel)

"It's been fun, hasn't it?" Morgan says. "Howie's fantastic. He's spent his entire time trying to wind me up, as we say in the U.K. , and he's successful.

"So he's very, very irritating, but in a very funny way. It's all humor. He makes me laugh more offstage than he even does onstage."

Despite the focus, for example, on young talent on such shows as "American Idol," Morgan notes that favorites on "Talent" are much more diverse in every way, including age.

"A lot of the older acts have really captured the young mind," Morgan says. "I don't think age is ever a barrier on ' America 's Got Talent.' It's all about the character and heart and talent.

"And likability is a big thing. They've got to like you. If people like you, you can go a long way with a reasonable talent. Where some people have got a great talent but no personality, they often just get bombed out. The public finds them rather boring."

Last season on " America 's Got Talent," a chicken catcher from rural Kentucky named Kevin Skinner won the big prize. Earlier winners include ventriloquist Terry Fator, who is now a top-tier act in Las Vegas . Morgan expects more of the same this season.

"I think we're going to have an amazing semifinal and final based on what I've already seen," he says. "We've got some fantastic talent, and we're going to produceconnor-doran-americas-got-talent.jpg two or three big stars. Everyone's very excited on the show."

And you may ask, have I picked a favorite yet? Not quite, but I do like me some Connor Doran. Have you ever danced with a kite in the pale moonlight? No? Watch this.