When selecting "Remove rated podcasts from this iPod during a podcast sync" in the podcast options, podcasts are no longer selectable from the iPod podcast menu. This seems to work on all my iPods except the Nano 8GB. If I select any other podcast sync option, the nano works fine.
Steps to dupe (Using iPod Nano)
1. change podcast removal option under General Preferences > iPod support > Speech to "Remove rated podcasts from this iPod during a podcast sync"
2. Sync a couple podcasts to iPod
3. Give one of the podcasts a star rating
4. Run sync podcasts again
5. Disconnect iPod and select podcasts.
6. podcasts submenu cannot be accessed.