Scott, I covered this point in a 2001 article I wrote for Decathlon2000. While my favorite all-time decathlete is Sebrle because of his quality, endurance, and consistency, he would not be the world record holder (8022) using my suggestion. Neither would Dvorak (8029) or O'Brien (8022) or Thompson (8038). Since electronic, to-the-hundredth-second scoring, I believe it would be one of my least favorite decathletes: Jenner (8171). If you include the hand-timed performers, Thorpe would be number 1 (8642). Of course, my math and the data is subject to correction. Now people are really going to get annoyed with me.
As to the Twain quote, I could not agree with you more. Alex Rodriguez has nearly 600 home runs but has only 1 World Series championship, Dan Marino has more than 400 touchdown passes with one Super Bowl ring, and John Stockton is the career assists leader and never won an NBA basketball championship. Teams with superstars possessing the heftiest stats often do not win the big one. But, statistics are damn lies that we all love telling, right? I for one, love the lie. I just like my lie better than the IAAF's.