Drop the excuses: The PGA Tour guys don't care enough. They're a bunch of coddled millionaires who don't know how to form warm, personal bonds with anyone besides their press agents. The selection process is flawed. The captain is a dope. The course was set up for the Europeans. Pluto was downgraded.
No, no and no.
The reason we're losing, plain and simple, is George W. Bush.
He's turned the rest of the world against us. Just as his actions in Iraq have caused terrorists to swarm together, much like cockroaches, and unite, his behavior in world affairs has given athletes around the world, just like politicians, extra motivation to beat up on us.
Many athletes can read and all of them can watch TV and you can bet they're keeping up with Bush's shenanigans. In sports, motivation is everything.
It isn't just golf. America is no longer the sports superpower it once was.
Basketball used to be our game. Now our NBA pros, once revered around the world, can't even beat Greece. Baseball was our game too. Now we can't even win the World Baseball Classic, where ally Japan and arch-nemesis Cuba played for the title. (To be fair, we should drop the "world" from that little baseball event we host every fall and just call it the North American Series.)
Let's hope they don't make our NFLers play in a world championship.
In boxing all the heavyweight champions are from the former Soviet Union. We can't even kick ass in the ring any more.
Soccer? Forget it. In the great scheme of world soccer, we're a dirt clog on David Beckham's cleats.
So let's stop making all these lame, irrelevant excuses and just accept the fact that we've devolved into a third-world country as far as sports and politics are concerned.
It starts at the top. With Bush alienating the world, the only recourse for many of these frustrated nations is to take it out on our athletes. The Iraq war is great bulletin-board material.
Most pro golfers are Republicans, of course. You think those European players don't know this?
When Sergio Garcia said, "Beating the Americans is always sweet," you can bet he was thinking about the U.S. ambassador's decision in 2004 to go hunting instead of attending Spain's national-day celebrations.
England's Paul Casey, who once called American golf galleries "stupid," told a reporter from a Manchester newspaper, "Bush makes those idiots look like Rhodes scholars."
Most European politicians won't come right out and say they hate America, but they do.
True, part of that hatred stems from jealousy: We have better teeth, don't have to put up with all that global-warming baloney and can buy entire geographical regions with what's sitting in petty cash. They envy our electoral process, wherein the right person backed by the right money can proclaim himself president even though, technically, he may have actually lost the election.
Same with European athletes. They usually won't come out and say it, though Garcia and Casey have come close. But they too are jealous of American golfers and, particularly, American golf courses.
I've been to Europe and seen their courses. They grow a little grass in a cow pasture and call it golf. They call it "natural" when what they really mean is "cheap." And trust me, they really don't want to walk. They'd rather ride in golf carts, but they don't want to seem "too American."
Neither European pols nor golfers want to totally alienate America, because our tourists prop up their economies, and besides, we could always bomb them silly until they took back their mean words. But you can see the anger and resentment seething just below the surface. So they make snide comments from time to time, and plan secret strategies to undermine us at every turn.
This jealousy has been exacerbated by the current administration, which has managed to turn it into pure hatred. The United States has become the world's bully and everyone loves to give the bully his comeuppance.
So view this latest Ryder Cup fiasco in the proper perspective. Our guys never had a chance. Thanks, George. You've turned us into losers.
October 2, 2006
Simply select where you want to play, find a tee time deal, and golf now!