Slow start, but season still young for Woods

first_imgPALM BEACH GARDENS, Fla. – Imagine being one-third of the way through the PGA Tour season and having a slight edge over Tiger Woods in the FedEx Cup. ”I would say, ‘God, I’m playing well,”’ said Joe Ogilvie. Except that he’s not. But he does have a slight edge over Woods, who is hardly playing at all. The points distribution system goes down to the very decimal. Ogilvie finished in a two-way for 74th at the Phoenix Open, but because one full point is awarded only to 70th place, he earned 0.91 points. Woods did not make the 54-hole cut at Torrey Pines and finished in a two-way tie for 80th, thus receiving 0.79 points. So at least Ogilvie has that going for him. ”It is amazing that we’re one-third of the way through the season,” Ogilvie said. ”But he’s playing the Honda Classic, so I know he’s looking at the stats and saying, ‘If I can just get ahead of Ogilvie, I should be OK for the rest of the year.”’ Woods has said he’s having a hard time getting his head around the wraparound season that started in July. That should start to clear up this week at the Honda Classic, which the No. 1 player sees as the start to his season. Honda Classic: Articles, videos and photos The Florida swing is better known as the road to the Masters, and it’s time for Woods to get into gear. He’s in good company, of course. Masters champion Adam Scott, who has played twice as much as Woods this season on the PGA Tour (that would be two tournaments) is holding steady at No. 101 in the FedEx Cup. He’s three spots ahead of Rory McIlroy. That’s what prompted NBC Sports analyst Johnny Miller to effectively dismiss the three wins this season by Jimmy Walker, the winners of the tournaments last fall (which include Webb Simpson and Dustin Johnson), or even the 64-64 weekend by Bubba Watson when he won at Riviera. ”We’ve had a lot of good stories,” Miller said. ”But I think now the guns are back and probably ready to do something in the next couple weeks. So I don’t see players that maybe are the second-tier players … I think the big boys are warmed up and ready to go.” Some of them are, anyway. Scott followed his amazing run Down Under with a pair of top 10s in Hawaii before taking a six-week break. McIlroy had chances to win at Abu Dhabi and Dubai. Woods is the mystery, though it’s early, even if the PGA Tour’s new schedule says otherwise. He has played only four times since the Presidents Cup last October – the Turkish Airlines Open, his World Challenge against an 18-man field, Torrey Pines and Dubai. He missed the 54-hole cut at Torrey Pines with his worst score in America (79), and he tied for 41st in the Dubai Desert Classic. Woods said he spent most of the offseason ”trying to get my body organized,” and he said his game was slow to come around. But he’s playing three of the next four weeks, including title defenses at Doral and Bay Hill. Even with 14 tournaments already in the books, there is a sense the PGA Tour season is just started. Besides, at this stage in his career, it’s all about being ready for the majors for Woods. He is not unlike Jack Nicklaus at age 38. Nicklaus played only five times before the Masters in 1978, and he played two events a month in the heart of the season (February through August). Then again, Nicklaus didn’t have to worry about a FedEx Cup at the end of the year in which most players will be asked to compete seven times in nine weeks, all big tournaments. It would not be surprising for Woods to consider skipping a playoff event. Woods rarely goes to a tournament without hearing some mention of being stuck on 14 majors – four short of the Nicklaus standard – since 2008. Expect to start hearing even more of that speculation with Augusta National around the corner. Miller said last month that how Woods fared in the Masters would be a precursor to the rest of his year in the majors. During a conference call Monday, the two-time major champion made it sound as though the task were tougher than ever. ”Before it was like if he had his A-game, you could just kiss it off,” Miller said. ”It wasn’t going to happen. He was just so much better than everybody and so much better under pressure and so much better on Sundays and so much better in the majors. It was not a fair fight, as Roger Maltbie would say.” That was Maltbie’s famous line from the 2000 U.S. Open at Pebble Beach after Woods hit 7-iron out of the rough on the par-5 sixth hole to 15 feet. He won by 15 shots. ”Now, it’s a fair fight, wouldn’t you say?” Miller said. He asked that of Notah Begay, a close friend of Woods who also works as an analyst for NBC. Begay agreed, saying ”his game has come back down to Earth a little bit.” ”Prior to everything that’s happened away from golf, if you were to pace your game according to Tiger Woods, you knew you were going to be around the top 10 and probably most likely near the lead,” Begay said. ”And I don’t think that’s the case right now.” That would be good news for those trying to challenge Woods – and bad news for Ogilvie. ”I just hope Tiger can pass me,” Ogilvie said. The sarcasm was heavy and the message was clear. No matter what the schedule says, it’s early. Golf is just getting started.last_img read more

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Memory Payne

first_imgAfter the second round of the 1999 National Car Rental Golf Classic I was sitting in front of my locker talking to John Cook about the Senior Tour, as the Champions Tour was known then, when Payne Stewart walked in. John and I were debating whether the old man’s tour would be around for us to play. John had just turned 42 and I was 37. We agreed the tour seemed to have run its course and we thought we were more likely to be pensioners than players after age 50. Just four months removed from winning the U.S. Open, Payne took a seat beside me. After listening for a while he raised a finger and said, “Whatz you guys fails to understand …” We all burst out laughing. Payne was known to carry around a set of fake teeth, all stained and askew, and pop them in when least expected. He would often affect some weird accent to add to the humor. Photos: 1999 U.S. Open at Pinehurst No. 2 Payne and I both missed the cut, leaving us to the routine of departing an event: grab a bag for unused golf balls and gloves, get your shoes, tip the locker-room attendant and leave the scene of the crime, so to speak. John’s questions stalled my exit, but Payne seemed in no hurry to leave, as if he were chewing on something besides those teeth. Earlier in the week Payne had drawn the ire of many with an over-the-top impersonation of a Chinese person speaking English. It was in response to a quip by Peter Alliss that the Americans (during the Ryder Cup) were so different from the Brits, they might as well be Chinese. Squinting and sticking out his teeth, Stewart told ESPN’s Mark McCumber, “I just want Peter Alliss to know that all of us American golfers on the Ryder Cup team, we are Chinese, too. Thank you very much.” Stewart later apologized, saying there was no intent to offend anyone but Alliss. His impromptu parody ignited a media firestorm. When some called him a racist, I sensed he was hurting, because that was so far from who he was. I’ve carried these memories of Payne Stewart for nearly 15 years, the amount of time that has passed since he was one of six people killed in the 1999 crash of a private plane. Now, with the U.S. Open about to be played at Pinehurst, where he won the last of his three majors in June 1999, the memories of Stewart have become increasingly vivid. A ROUND OF GOLF reveals many things about a man, but tournament golf is an inkblot test. You want to know who a man is? Watch him lose. Better yet, watch him win. I was paired with Stewart for the final 36 holes of the only event I would win on Tour, the 1998 Greater Vancouver Open. Payne had won plenty by professional golf standards – nine wins to that point in his career, including two majors and a near-miss on a third at the U.S. Open a few months before – but not enough for his critics, who called him “Avis” for his propensity for coming in second. I’m sure the moniker bothered him but he was every bit the star – as if he’d won 50 times. With his plus-fours and tam o’shanter cap, nobody was more recognizable in golf. And when he swung the club, all of us were transported to a more elegant decade, perhaps the 1920s. In an age where many swings looked like they were built in a lab, he was Roy Hobbs. That weekend I was the journeyman and he was the giant and the Vancouver crowd wanted him to win. Several times over those two days he apologized for the crowd’s partisanship. I understood their favoritism – a win by him would elevate the status of the event – but I appreciated his consideration. [[{“type”:”media”,”view_mode”:”media_large”,”fid”:”659571″,”attributes”:{“alt”:””,”class”:”media-image”,”height”:”286″,”typeof”:”foaf:Image”,”width”:”480″}}]] AT THE 1999 U.S. Open I played well before the leaders on Sunday. On the 16th hole I had a putt of about 20 feet for par. In between the hole and my ball was a ridge which I had to putt over at an angle. The ball would break more or less, depending on which angle I took. I missed by a mile and I remember thinking that no one could make that putt. A few hours later Payne had the same putt. He smacked his gum as he looked at the line the way a jeweler looks at a diamond. Playing commentator, I called the read impossible. Seconds later I turned back into a fan, blown away by Stewart’s talent. I remember his reaction to the holed putt more than the putt itself. His eyes never blinked as he chomped that gum and walked off the green completely absorbed in what he needed to do next, while the rest of the world was agog at what he had just done. What he did next made for some of the most memorable moments in the history of golf. Forgotten so often by those who win in a rush is that someone else just lost. A statue commemorates the pose Payne struck after holing the winning putt, but no less indelible is the image of him grabbing Phil Mickelson by the face and reminding him of the larger picture of impending parenthood. That kind of empathy at a moment like that is as rare as the moment itself. A FEW MONTHS after that U.S. Open, on Tuesday of the 1999 National Car Rental Golf Classic, Payne and I were in the fitness trailer with a few others. As I was leaving, I grabbed two waist-high exercise balls and rolled them in front of me as I walked out the door. “This was you walking off the 16th green at Pinehurst,” I said. He roared. The Disney event ended on Sunday, Oct. 24, with Tiger Woods collecting his 13th Tour win. On Monday I flew from Orlando to Scottsdale and came home to a ringing phone with the tragic news. I immediately thought of Payne’s family and I was sick with grief. Every flight I have ever boarded, commercial or private, I have this fleeting macabre moment where I think about my family and wonder what if … Did I tell them I love them? Did I look them in the eye so they knew? Did I hug them? What would my children’s lives be like without a father? Fleeting, horrific thoughts, irrational in the face of the odds, became a reality for the Stewarts that day. A life cut short is something I know far too much about, having lost a son before I got to know him, before I got to see who he would become. I’ve often wondered if the pain of his loss would be assuaged in any way if I had gotten to see him grow up to be happy and to make others happy … the way Payne did. I don’t know the answer to that question, but I do know that Payne left behind a family that loves him, friends that miss him and a game that is better off because of him.last_img read more

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Major season not a good one for GOLF

first_imgAs a golf fan, you might not care one bit if the professional game grows beyond its already sizable circle. That’s cool. And if you’re one of those golf fans who is happy to simply enjoy the professional game, then 2016 was a magical major champion season. We had great winners. We had drama. We had a duel for the ages. It has been great for golf. But — and here’s where we probably differ — I don’t think it’s been as great for GOLF, all capital letters. What’s the difference between golf and GOLF? I guess I’d put it this way: It’s the difference between the Stanley Cup and the NHL regular season. It’s the difference between the Kentucky Derby and every other horse race. It’s the difference between the Indy 500 and other open-wheel races. Golf is a great sport. GOLF is a cultural phenomenon. Yes, there are a few times in the game’s history when GOLF transcends its usual place in the American landscape and becomes something bigger. This happened for a time in the 1950s after Ben Hogan survived a horrible car crash and then came back to win the U.S. Open (and, a short while later, three majors in one year). They made a movie about that, threw a ticker tape parade for him, all that stuff. GOLF became cool in the 1960s because Arnold Palmer was cool, the way he smoked his cigarettes and lashed at the ball and charged from behind at the finish. GOLF was titanic when Jack Nicklaus dueled with Palmer and Lee Trevino and Tom Watson. And, of course, Tiger Woods took GOLF to unprecedented heights, unheard of ratings, impossibly high purses and all that. Tiger’s chase of “greatest player ever” masked his overwhelming accomplishment of becoming the most famous player ever. He made golf as important to sports fans as just about any other sport. It seemed to me going into this major championship season that there was a chance for golf to once again skyrocket into America’s imagination. And, as great as 2016 was, I don’t think that happened. Don’t misunderstand: It was fantastic for golf fans. At the Masters, we watched Jordan Spieth’s first encounter with doubt and uncertainty. He collapsed down the stretch, and a fine English player, Danny Willett, played brilliantly and took the green jacket. At the U.S. Open, we watched Dustin Johnson — a massive and star-crossed talent who can do things that no other player can — finally put it together and win even as the USGA clumsily mishandled a penalty ruling. Photo gallery: Best moments from the 2016 major season At The Open, we had perhaps the greatest duel in golf history — certainly right there with the Watson-Nicklaus Duel in the Sun at Turnberry in 1977 — as the superb Henrik Stenson somehow out-birdied Phil Mickelson while they both left the rest of the world far behind. And finally, at a weather-flattened PGA Championship, a game Texan with the plain name of Jimmy Walker held off the world’s No. 1 player, Jason Day, to win his first major championship. All four of the champions, in fact, were excellent pros and first-time major winners. But GOLF, the grand version of the game, is driven by superstars. And some of us came into this year with the hope, even the expectation, of having more than one superstar drive the sport on to the front pages and magazine covers and lead stories on TV. As the year began, the top three players in the world were: 1. Spieth: Magical putter; winner of two major championships and the FedEx Cup in 2015; likable Texan, who doesn’t only play well, he serves as he own analyst on the course. 2. Day: Friendly Australian; record setter for lowest major championship score at the PGA Championship; inspiring story who overcame various troubles and built a near-flawless game. 3. Rory McIlroy: Powerful Irishman; perfect swing; probably has the highest ceiling of any player in the world — at his best, he might be unbeatable. You couldn’t get three more perfect candidates to have a shootout for golf’s top billing. They are friendly with each other, but there’s an obvious rivalry between them. They have very different styles and games. They all have charisma. No one player can ever be Tiger, but together the three have a chance to give us a tension and sense of surprise that The Woods Era could not provide. This was a chance for something great. And that just didn’t materialize. Spieth, after his meltdown at Augusta, wasn’t a factor in any of the other majors. Day certainly has had a good year — winning The Players Championship and WGC-Match Play and finishing second at the PGA — but he returned to his close-but-not-quite ways in the majors. And McIlroy was all over the place, finishing top 10 at two majors (though not really in contention for either) and missing the cut in the other two. So that just didn’t come together. Of course, golf fans will tell you, that’s no surprise. Golf is a game of disappointment. Day had an amazing year, even if he didn’t win any majors. Spieth won twice this year and led for all but the last nine holes at the Masters. McIlroy won in Dubai. It’s not fair to expect those guys to just compete at every major championship. And it isn’t fair. But this is how Woods spoiled us and lifted GOLF to such great heights. He brought his game week after week after week. He didn’t miss major championship cuts (or, really, any cuts). He didn’t blow leads in the fourth round. He didn’t miss the putts that win and lose championships. There was never even the slightest doubt who the No. 1 player in the world was, and this made golf fascinating to people like my mother who would not even know which end of the golf club with which to hit. He gave order to the game — you could root for him or against him and it was just as fun. Now, who is No. 1 in the world? The rankings say it’s Day. He’s had the best year, but without a major championship the year is incomplete. Johnson moved up to No. 2 in the world, and he certainly could become that big star that draws people to golf — he’s a thrilling player, there’s the Gretzky connection, etc. — but he has proven to be unreliable for various reasons, and he just had a stink bomb of a PGA Championship. Spieth? McIlroy? Rickie Fowler? The ageless Mickelson? Tiger himself? How about Beef? There’s a lot of excitement in all that, and if you’re a golf fan, these are good times. But if you’re not a golf fan, I suspect 2016 didn’t change your mind. And that’s the lost chance.last_img read more

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Ciganda tied at Ochoa Invtl.; Wie three back

first_imgMEXICO CITY – Carlota Ciganda birdied three of the last six holes Thursday for a 5-under 67 and a share of the lead with playing partner Sarah Jane Smith in the Citibanamex Lorena Ochoa Invitational. Ciganda had a bogey-free opening round at Club de Golf Mexico. ”I really like this course,” Ciganda said. ”I really like it because is really similar to my home course in Spain.” The former Arizona State player won last month in South Korea for her first LPGA Tour title. ”I was home last week and I played four tournaments in Asia, so it was really nice to be home with my family,” Ciganda said. ”I didn’t practice at all. It was just resting and having fun, going out for dinner with friends. And I feel very mentally refreshed, because in Asia I was a little bit tired at the end. It is important how to manage all the tournaments and all the weeks you want to play.” Smith played the back nine in 5-under 31 after bogeying Nos. 8 and 9 to make the turn at even par. The Australian is winless on the LPGA Tour. ”It makes a difference when you see it,” Smith said about playing alongside Ciganda. ”I love playing with her, she is so nice and we always have fun, so it absolutely makes a difference.” Mexican amateur Maria Fassi, a freshman at the University of Arkansas playing on a sponsor invite, was two strokes back at 69 along with South Korea’s Chella Choi and France’s Karine Icher. ”I was feeling really good,” Fassi said. ”I worked really hard on preparing for this tournament and on the first tee when they said my name I was nervous, I am not going to lie, but after I hit the fairway on the first tee, I was like, ‘OK you got it, just enjoy your round.’ And that’s what I did. … I was really solid off the tee. I gave myself a lot of opportunities to be a little bit more aggressive on my second shots.” Michelle Wie opened with a 70. The 2009 winner in Guadalajara, she’s also playing on a sponsor invite after failing to qualify for the 30-player event. Canada’s Brooke Henderson, the highest-ranked player in the field at No. 7 in the world, had a double bogey in a 74. No. 14 Anna Nordqvist also struggled, making a double bogey in a 75.last_img read more

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Ko, winless in 2017, leads LPGA in Malaysia

first_imgKUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia – Lydia Ko fired a 64 for her best opening round of the year to lead the LPGA tour’s Sime Darby event at 7 under on Thursday, and is hoping her best start will lead to her first title of 2017. The former No. 1-ranked Ko is one shot ahead of Su Oh and two ahead of defending champion and two-time winner Shanshan Feng, Madelene Sagstrom and Eun-Hee Ji, who won by six strokes in Taiwan last week for her first LPGA tour title since 2009. ”Today I tried to be positive and as confident as I can,” said Ko, who finished second in Taiwan last week. ”I think playing well last week really gave me good momentum going into today.” Full-field scores from the Sime Darby LPGA Malaysia Ko opened with a birdie, one of seven in an unblemished round on the par 71, 6,246-yard course at the TPC Kuala Lumpur. ”Made a string of birdies late in my front nine and I was able to keep that momentum going into the back nine,” she said. Ko has three top-10 finishes since September, and 10 overall this year. No. 6-ranked Feng, who has been runner-up here twice along with her victories in 2014 and ’16, said her ball striking was ”super” but she missed some birdie chances. ”I think that means maybe I can still make more over the weekend,” she said, ”I think it’s a good start.”last_img read more

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TT Postscript: 72 a round of many adjectives

first_imgFARMINGDALE, N.Y. – Ouch. No more words need to be said. Or typed. But I’ll still try. Tiger Woods shot an opening 2-over 72 Thursday at the PGA Championship at Bethpage Black. It looked bad, then good, then great, then ended poorly. Here are some things I think I think after Tiger’s first competitive round in 32 days: • If you just looked at the final score you may not be so discouraged. But once you break it down, you quickly will be if you’re a Tiger fan. The biggest thing to be discouraged about is that Tiger is nine shots behind leader Brooks Koepka. That’s a big problem. Huge. • The double bogey on the first hole was deserved. He hit a bad tee shot, poked his approach up the fairway, and then hit an awful wedge shot over the green and failed to get up and down. Immediately, it seemed like there was much competitive rust. • After birdie at 15, he recorded another double bogey on the par-3 17th hole (his eighth hole of the day) when his tee shot was in a terrible spot in the bunker. He took a mighty swing and the ball found the back of the green, but he promptly three-putted from there. • Birdie, birdie, par, eagle was how Tiger started his second nine holes. Bogey, par, bogey, bogey, par was how he ended it. PGA Championship: Scores | Full coverage • Tiger had three three-putts on the round, each time missing from that 5- to 8-foot range. • About the Wednesday no-show, Tiger said: “I got a little bit sick, so I decided to stay home.” Twenty-four hours after his agent said he was not sick. • More Tiger: “It wasn’t as clean as I’d like to have it for sure. Didn’t get off to a very good start. It was a good drive and ended up in a bad spot, and I compounded the problem with trying to use the backboard behind the hole there and missing a putt I should have made. And then found my way back around. Got it back under par for the day, and let a couple slip away with a couple bad putts and a couple mistakes at the end.” • Round 2 begins at 1:49 p.m. ET. Going to have 24 hours to stew about this one, then get to go out and watch Tiger while also witnessing Brooks continue to do what Tiger used to do to people.last_img read more

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Green (64) holds one-shot lead at Czech Masters

first_imgVYSOKY UJEZD, Czech Republic — Gavin Green of Malaysia shot an 8-under 64 for a one-shot lead after the opening round of the Czech Masters on Thursday. Hoping to become the first Malaysian to win a European Tour trophy, Green birdied eight of the first 12 holes to top the leaderboard. He bogeyed the 13th but returned to the leading position with a last-hole birdie at the Albatross Golf Resort near Prague. He also shared the lead last year after matching the course record with an opening 64. ”I don’t know what it is about this place,” Green said. ”The course suits me well and it helps if you hit it a little longer and a little higher. It helps to be able to stop the ball on the greens. If you get a good drive away you just have a wedge in your hand and you can take advantage of that.” Full-field scores from the D+D Real Czech Masters Erik van Rooyen and Lee Slattery shot 7 under to tie for second. South Africa’s Van Rooyen had a bogey-free round with seven birdies while Englishman Slattery finished with an eagle, six birdies and a bogey. Edoardo Molinari was among six golfers tied for fourth after a round of 66. Defending champion Andrea Pavan of Italy was two strokes behind them. Multiple major winners Ernie Els and Padraig Harrington, former world No. 1 Lee Westwood, and Eddie Pepperell, the highest ranked player at the tournament at No. 41, all carded 1-over 73.last_img read more

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‘Somewhat back’ Brooks happy with play, body

first_imgHILTON HEAD ISLAND, S.C. – Before the PGA Tour was upended by the COVID-19 pandemic, this was supposed to be U.S. Open week, which could explain Brooks Koepka’s performance at the RBC Heritage. Originally cancelled as the Tour scrambled to piece together a complicated season, the Heritage was given new life when the U.S. Open was rescheduled to September and officials at Harbour Town gladly filled the open date. Apparently, no one told Koepka, whose performance in the majors has been patiently better than his play in regular-season events. Or maybe he just needed a break. The three-month pause in the Tour schedule has created countless issues for the circuit, but if anyone needed some time away it was Koepka. After being sidelined for three months with a left-knee injury last fall, Koepka looked nothing like the world beater he’d become to start 2020. He missed the cut at the Honda Classic and failed to crack the top 40 in his other two starts before play was halted. When he arrived at TPC Sawgrass he was fresh off an emergency trip to Las Vegas to meet with legendary swing coach Butch Harmon. He was searching for answers. Now another three months removed from competition, Koepka counts that meeting with Harmon as a turning point. “Any time you can go see Butch, it’s going to help,” Koepka said. “A lot of it was just trying to play so perfect, I couldn’t understand why I was hitting it to 15 feet. Sometimes you’ve just got to get on with it and make the putt. I just needed to reassess.” Koepka: Nice to have ‘juices flowing’ for first time in a long time RBC Heritage: Full-field scores | Full coverage He ended up having plenty of time to reassess. If Harmon, along with Koepka’s regular swing coach Claude Harmon III, was able to sort out Koepka’s swing, the three-month pandemic pause allowed him to sort through whatever physical issues remained. “This is the best my body’s felt in years. A lot of work I’ve done with [his trainer], just manipulating the knee, the kneecap. It’s been a long road,” Koepka said. “It just feels like I haven’t been healthy for a very long time. My body feels great. I feel like I can really move through the golf ball.” To prove the point, Koepka closed with a 6-under 65 on Sunday at the RBC Heritage to finish seventh for his best finish on Tour since last year’s Tour Championship. The final margin suggests he never really had a chance, but Koepka never allowed himself to think in those terms. “I felt like I almost had to birdie the whole back nine just to even out the chance. I mean, to get to 21 [under], I thought would be about right,” said Koepka who finished at 18 under and four strokes behind winner Webb Simpson. Golf Central Koepka’s misses par-4 ace by all of 3 feet BY Nick Menta  — June 21, 2020 at 3:08 PM Playing his final round at the RBC Heritage on Sunday, Brooks Koepka took a go at the 329-yard par-4 ninth and missed out on a hole-in-one by all of 3 feet and 6 inches. Koepka drove the par-4 ninth green [a 330-yard effort] and tapped in from less than 4 feet for eagle to move to within two shots of the lead. On his way to the 10th tee the weather warning horn sounded, but the two-hour-and-45-minute delay didn’t slow his rally and he birdied Nos. 10 and 11 to move to within one stroke of the lead. After that his momentum stalled with four consecutive pars starting at the 12th hole, a run that included a particularly deflating par at the par-5 15th hole after missing a 4 ½ foot birdie putt. Still, after a combined six months of injury and isolation this season it felt like a giant step in the right direction. “It just felt nice to feel something again. [The Tour Championship] was the last time I probably ever felt anything. So just feels good to be back somewhat. I mean, I’m not going to win it, but somewhat of a chase,” he said. Koepka will take “somewhat” because even though he knows the RBC Heritage is not a major championship he played it like it was one this week. And he knows there are actual major championships looming on the horizon.last_img read more

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Here Comes “Blade Runner World”!

first_img Recommended Email Print Google+ Linkedin Twitter Share The 1982 film Blade Runner presented audiences with brilliant dystopian visual images of a dark, joyless non-society set in a future Los Angeles, steeped in a radically individualistic social anarchy so pervasive that rich human interconnections no longer exist, in which genetically engineered life forms are so ubiquitous it is impossible to know where the “natural” ends and the bioengineered begins.How would such a society come into being? Socializing and binding institutions would fail,  leading to a collapse of civic society. Then, add to the recipe a stunning failure to properly regulate biotechnologies — the most powerful and potentially impactful inventions ever conjured out of the minds of man — for ethics and morality as well as safety.It could happen. Can anyone deny our civic and political institutions are in crisis? Moreover, as you read these words, biotechnologists are creating the most powerful technologies known to man. Yet there is a paucity of legally enforceable regulations creating proper parameters around the technology to govern what can and can’t be done.Designer Babies; What Next?Take the manufacture of germline gene-edited babies. It is profoundly unethical to (essentially) manufacture babies with genetic alterations that will pass the alterations down the generations for no urgent medical purpose. It is to change these babies’ futures and those of their progeny.  It is to treat the birth of babies as a mere medical experiment, without any sure knowledge of what impact these alterations will have on their lives. Requesting a (Partial) Retraction from Darrel Falk and BioLogos Meanwhile, we are told that “the scientists” can be trusted to self-regulate their ethics. After a Chinese biotechnologist created the first gene-edited babies — landing him in prison because he embarrassed his government — now, a Russian scientist has announced he plans to be next.  From the Nature story: Email Print Google+ Linkedin Twitter Share Medicine Here Comes “Blade Runner World”!Wesley J. SmithJune 13, 2019, 3:34 PM A Russian scientist says he is planning to produce gene-edited babies, an act that would make him only the second person known to have done this. It would also fly in the face of the scientific consensus that such experiments should be banned until an international ethical framework has agreed on the circumstances and safety measures that would justify them.“Consensus” these days is meaningless without enforceable legal penalties to back it up. It is long past time that governments impose legally enforceable domestic moratoriums and that these be reinforced by international bans on creating these babies.It is startling to realize that Blade Runner takes place in 2019. While we have certainly not yet devolved into a “Blade Runner World,” the movie’s dark prophetic vision is starting to come true.Photo: A scene from Blade Runner? Nope, it’s Tokyo in 2014; by nicelife_bs [CC BY 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons. Wesley J. SmithChair and Senior Fellow, Center on Human ExceptionalismWesley J. Smith is Chair and Senior Fellow at the Discovery Institute’s Center on Human Exceptionalism. Wesley is a contributor to National Review and is the author of 14 books, in recent years focusing on human dignity, liberty, and equality. Wesley has been recognized as one of America’s premier public intellectuals on bioethics by National Journal and has been honored by the Human Life Foundation as a “Great Defender of Life” for his work against suicide and euthanasia. Wesley’s most recent book is Culture of Death: The Age of “Do Harm” Medicine, a warning about the dangers to patients of the modern bioethics movement.Follow WesleyProfileTwitterFacebook Share “A Summary of the Evidence for Intelligent Design”: The Study Guide Origin of Life: Brian Miller Distills a Debate Between Dave Farina and James Tour Jane Goodall Meets the God Hypothesis A Physician Describes How Behe Changed His MindLife’s Origin — A “Mystery” Made AccessibleCodes Are Not Products of PhysicsIxnay on the Ambriancay PlosionexhayDesign Triangulation: My Thanksgiving Gift to All TagsbabiesbioethicsbiotechnologyBlade RunnerBlade Runner WorldChinagene-edited babiesgovernmentLos Angelesmedical experimentmedicinemoralitymoratoriumNature (journal)prisonRussiascientists,Trending Congratulations to Science Magazine for an Honest Portrayal of Darwin’s Descent of Manlast_img read more

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A Follow-Up Question on Evolutionary Ethics

first_img Recommended Email Print Google+ Linkedin Twitter Share Requesting a (Partial) Retraction from Darrel Falk and BioLogos Origin of Life: Brian Miller Distills a Debate Between Dave Farina and James Tour Share Thoughtful reader Paul, a university freshman in the U.K., asks about Michael Egnor’s article from last year, “From the Annals of Evolutionary Ethics.” I have recently been studying the topic of morality, specifically whether or not objective moral values and duties exist. I have found many sources favouring the view of relative morality, but few supporting the existence of objective moral values and duties.“A Simple Issue”Per the reader’s request, I asked Michael Egnor to “defend the reality of objectively real morals.” Dr. Egnor’s answer:I see it as a very simple issue. If there is objective moral law, then acts are right or wrong in themselves.If there is no objective moral law, then moral law is just individual opinion. Of course, an individual may have the opinion that all people ought to do X, but that’s just one opinion out of 7 billion opinions. Who is to say what opinions ”ought” to be done? We could vote, but there’s no reason to apply democratic reasoning to moral law (the Holocaust was fairly popular in Berlin in the early 1940s and would undoubtedly have prevailed in a referendum).Since there is no rational way to adjudicate moral law if it is merely individual opinions, moral relativism always boils down to power. “X is right” because I, who believe X is right, am stronger than you, who believe X is wrong. If you disagree, I’ll beat you up.If objective moral law is not real, then nothing is right or wrong in itself. Killing innocent people, raping babies, torturing puppies is merely a matter of taste, like preference in ice cream. “I hate genocide!” has the same probity as “I hate pistachio!”If you don’t believe in objective moral law, a law outside of human opinion, that’s fine. But then you are forced to acknowledge that your opinion on genocide/puppy assault/rape, etc., has the same moral standing as your opinion on art or ice cream. Opinion is opinion, and if you want to decide whose opinion wins, let’s arm wrestle.If moral law is real, then genocide and rape are really wrong, in themselves, no matter what anyone thinks. But if 1) moral law is real, then there must be 2) a lawgiver.That’s the problem for moral relativists. They don’t want to admit 2, so they deny 1.It’s a simple matter. The literature may be interesting, but it’s just simple logic really.By the way, if you don’t think that genocide would have been popular if put to a vote in Germany, read Daniel Goldhagen’s eye-opening book, Hitler’s Willing Executioners: Ordinary Germans and the Holocaust.Photo: Entrance to Auschwitz II-Birkenau death camp, by Nelson Pérez [CC BY-SA 3.0], via Wikimedia Commons. TagsAdolf HitlerAuschwitz II-BirkenauBerlinDaniel Goldhagenevolutionary ethicsgenocideGermansGermanyHitler’s Willing ExecutionersHolocaustlawgiverMichael EgnorMoral Lawmoral relativistsmoralitypistachiorape,Trending Congratulations to Science Magazine for an Honest Portrayal of Darwin’s Descent of Mancenter_img Email Print Google+ Linkedin Twitter Share “A Summary of the Evidence for Intelligent Design”: The Study Guide Culture & Ethics Jane Goodall Meets the God Hypothesis Evolution A Follow-Up Question on Evolutionary EthicsDavid Klin[email protected]_klinghofferOctober 3, 2019, 3:00 PM A Physician Describes How Behe Changed His MindLife’s Origin — A “Mystery” Made AccessibleCodes Are Not Products of PhysicsIxnay on the Ambriancay PlosionexhayDesign Triangulation: My Thanksgiving Gift to Alllast_img read more

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