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And Another Thing

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Spy game

It's been said before here on the Blob, but it always bears repeating: Golf is seven kinds of silly.

All those OCD rules that exist for reasons only the rulemakers can explain, and then not coherently. All those instances where Guy Living In His Mom's Basement can see an infraction no one else saw -- mainly because no one saw it in super-slo motion, the way GLIHMB did -- and actually get the player penalized for it with a phone call.

The latter, frankly, is especially ridiculous, in that it takes rules enforcement out of the hands of those responsible for it -- the players and course marshals -- and puts it in the hands of people who have nothing to do with the tournament. And it places those players who are on camera a lot under a level of scrutiny everyone else isn't under, a patently unfair situation in a sport that prides itself on its fairness and sense of honor.

Well. It appears the PGA might be having second thoughts about this, at long last. And good for it.

There's no guarantee the PGA will do anything, of course, golf being the hidebound creature of habit it is. But at least Tim Finchem and the rest of the honchos are admitting it's an "awkward" situation -- particularly in light of a two-stroke penalty levied on Tiger Woods last weekend because his ball moved while he was clearing debris around it, but only so minutely that it took a close-up in super slo-mo to detect any movement.

Woods, not surprisingly, never noticed it. Neither did the course marshals. But some dope watching the video replay did, and alerted officials to it.

In a fair and more sane world, the officials' response should have been, "Thanks, but we didn't see it, and if we didn't see it, it's not an infraction. Go back to your Cheetos."

Instead, they indulged whoever it was who ratted out Woods. And that's just wrong. It lends a Kremlin-like air to the proceedings that does golf no credit whatsoever, and is in fact the precise opposite of honor and fair play.

Good on the PGA for finally starting to see that.

Ben Smith's blog.

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