Three Things: Turf’s Up

[NB: check the byline, thanks. Some of this content may be speculative. /~Rayne]

Last week Thursday, LIV Golf was mentioned in The New York Time’s article, Justice Dept. Intensifying Efforts to Determine if Trump Hid Documents. It’s the new professional golf tour funded by the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia’s sovereign wealth fund, the Public Investment Fund.

We’ve had a little fun with the new LIV Golf tour and the game of golf in comments. We should spend a little more time on this subject if Special Counsel Jack Smith thought Trump’s LIV-related business was subpoena worthy. Three Trump golf courses — Trump National-Bedminster NJ, Trump National-Sterling VA, Trump National-Doral FL — will host three of LIV Golf tour’s 14 events this season. Trump’s Bedminster and Doral courses hosted LIV during its inaugural season.

For those who are unfamiliar with the history of LIV Golf, here’s a timeline of its history along with some key points in U.S.-Saudi and Saudi-tangential events.

1994 — Aussie pro golfer Greg Norman tried to establish an alternative tour competing with the PGA with financial assist from Rupert Murdoch.

The idea of a breakaway circuit from the PGA Tour is far from a novel idea; the PGA Tour itself came to pass after players split from the PGA of America in 1967 to form the Tournament Players Division. More recently, former World No. 1 Greg Norman and media tycoon Rupert Murdoch attempted to create a “World Golf Tour” in the mid-1990s featuring the top players competing in an eight-event series. A television contract with Murdoch’s Fox Sports was even secured. But the endeavor was squashed as then-PGA Tour Commissioner Tim Finchem flexed both the tour’s legal chops and standing in the game. Other iterations of a world tour have come and gone without much fanfare.

November 2016 — U.S. general election won by Donald Trump, Republicans take Congress.

February 3, 2017 — Using the Congressional Review Act to fast track their effort, Senate passes a joint resolution already approved by the house, disproving the Securities and Exchange Commission’s Rule 13q-1, which implemented Section 1504 of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act.

Section 1504 and SEC rule 13q-1 enacted the U.S.’ participation in the EITI’s anti-corruption effort.

February 13, 2017 — Trump signed the disproving resolution. (Probably just another coincidence that Michael Flynn resigned this day as National Security Adviser.)

September 2017 — Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi became a columnist for the Washington Post.

October 25, 2017 — Jared Kushner departed for an unpublicized meeting with government officials in Saudi Arabia.

October 25, 2017 — Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin and Undersecretary for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence Sigal Mandelker traveled separately from Kushner to participate in bilateral discussions, which included the memorandum of understanding with the Terrorist Financing Targeting Center (TFTC). The U.S. and Saudi Arabia chair the TFTC while Gulf States form its membership.

October 30, 2017 — Jared Kushner met with Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, discussing strategy until 4:00 am. News reports didn’t indicate when exactly Kushner arrived or when discussions began. (Paul Manafort, Rick Gates, George Papadopolous were indicted this day, but not Kushner; good thing “excellent guy” Papadopolous as a former Trump campaign “energy and oil consultant” wasn’t involved in Kushner’s work with Saudi Arabia, that we knew of at that time.)

November 4, 2017 — At 7:49 am EDT, Trump tweeted,

“Would very much appreciate Saudi Arabia doing their IPO of Aramco with the New York Stock Exchange. Important to the United States!”

November 4, 2017 — (approximately 5:00 pm EDT, midnight Riyadh local time) At least 10 Saudi princes and dozens of government ministers were arrested and detained under what has been reported as an anti-corruption initiative. Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal, a critic of Trump and a tech industry investor of note, was among those arrested this weekend.

November 4, 2017 — At 11:12 pm EDT Reuters reported Trump said he had spoken with King Salman bin Abdulaziz about listing Saudi Aramco on the NYSE. The IPO is expected to be the largest offering ever.

October 2, 2018 — Jamal Khashoggi assassinated by dismemberment at the order of KSA’s crown prince Mohammad bin Salman.

November 6, 2018 — U.S. mid-term elections swings control of Congress with blue wave.

2019 — Greg Norman pursued again the development and launch of a PGA alternative including the Premier Golf League.

August 29, 2019 — Trump tweeted a classified satellite image of the failed Safir rocket launch in Iran.

The Office of the Director of National Intelligence referred questions about the image to the White House, which declined to comment.

“We had a photo and I released it, which I have the absolute right to do,” the president told reporters late Friday.

January 3, 2020 — Trump authorized assassination of Iran’s major general Qasem Soleimani by a U.S. drone strike near the Baghdad International Airport in Iraq.

November 2020 — U.S. general election won by Biden, Democrats take Congress.

January 20, 2021 — Trump departs White House as his term ends.

October 29, 2021 — Greg Norman named CEO of LIV — a subset of KSA’s Public Investment Fund — which said it would make $200 million investment in an Asian tour with tourneys across Asia, Europe and the Middle East.

May 2022: Amos Hochstein and Brett McGurk believe they make a deal for a two-part increase of production

June 2, 2022: OPEC announces the first part of production increases and Biden announces his Saudi trip

June 3, 2022: Trump travels from Mar-a-Lago to Bedminster for Saudi golf tournament

June 7, 2022: Adam Schiff and others send Biden a letter warning about Saudi Arabia

Prior to July 15, 2022: Briefings for Intelligence Committees on secret plan

July 15, 2022: Biden meets with Mohammed bin Salman

August 3, 2022: Saudis announce half of production increase promised (“the first public warning”)

September 5, 2022: OPEC announced production cuts

Late September 2022: US officials begin hearing of deep production cuts on October 5

September 24, 2022: MbS says there will be no production cuts

September 27, 2022: Abdulaziz argues cuts would impede diversification plans

September 28, 2022: Saudis inform the US they will announce production cuts

October 26 2022: Jared Kushner speaks at Saudi investment summit

Note the items in italics – they’re from Marcy’s timeline in her post The Intelligence Gaps Where the Saudis Hid Their October Surprise which she published last October.

Diversification of cash earned from oil into non-fossil fuel investments is what the PIF does; LIV Golf is one of the many diverse investments, and Trump along with the Trump organization is a beneficiary of that investment — and possibly an investment as well.

~ 3 ~

The LIV Golf league is in competition with the U.S.-based Pro Golfers Association Tour (PGA) for talent as well as media coverage even though it is not as focused on U.S. courses as the PGA. Golfers are required by the PGA to choose between tours — they must commit to the PGA or the other. They can’t play for both since doing so would create conflicts in timing and in contracts with TV/cable networks carrying golf events.

(Much of this conflict sounds very familiar to those who remember Trump’s first foray into sports with the USFL. His demand that USFL play in the fall and not the spring, putting the new league in direct conflict with the NFL, ultimately caused the demise of the USFL. Trump tried multiple times to get into the sports industry between the USFL and LIV Golf.)

Greg Norman has been open for the last three decades about his motivation for creating a new league and tour. While he claims he wants to promote golf, he’s simply in it for the money.

Golf has been and remains a sport for the wealthy. Equipment is expensive, membership at a course is expensive, the amount of time required to practice and become proficient to make the sport enjoyable requires considerable freedom from financial encumbrances. If Norman was really trying to promote the sport, he’d find ways to make it more accessible, but no. He just wants players including himself to make more money.

This makes Norman the perfect tool for sportswashing — he has no moral qualms about focusing on more money for golf, without regard for the reasons why sponsors are so ready with cash.

Never mind the little problem of a Saudi journalist working for an American news outlet being sawn into pieces because they expressed dissent. As Norman sees it, “We’ve all made mistakes.

His callousness is breathtaking, openly taking blood money and blowing off a gruesome murder because golf. The tour will just blow by the inconvenience of working for a murderer, wash away the taint with enough bankable green and enough manicured greens.

If the CEO of LIV Golf is this indifferent to the kind of people from which he takes money, one has to wonder just how deeply this insensitivity goes into the tour’s operations.

No wonder, then, Trump and his courses are engaged with LIV — they’re equally tactless and hard-hearted fit.

No wonder these business connections have been subpoenaed.

It would be nice to know if Trump’s creepy Victorian doll of a son-in-law Kushner negotiated the postmortem tacit approval of Khashoggi’s assassination and the delivery of Soleimani’s death in exchange for future support to both Kushner in the form of a massive $2 billion payout and Trump’s participation in LIV Golf as a key money and image laundering vehicle golf course host for the tour.

~ 2 ~

One of our long-time community members, WilliamOckham, went through last Thursday’s NYT article looking for sourcing. The article was focused on the Department of Justice’s subpoena of surveillance videotape at Mar-a-Lago in relation to classified documents in Trump’s possession after he left office.  It looked like Trump’s attorney Evan Corcoran (or Corcoran’s attorney(s)) was the possible sole source for the NYT’s multi-contributor piece.

What seemed odd was the mention of LIV Golf toward the middle of the article, in these two grafs — the 11th and 12th of 30 total paragraphs:

One of the previously unreported subpoenas to the Trump Organization sought records pertaining to Mr. Trump’s dealings with a Saudi-backed professional golf venture known as LIV Golf, which is holding tournaments at some of Mr. Trump’s golf resorts.

It is unclear what bearing Mr. Trump’s relationship with LIV Golf has on the broader investigation, but it suggests that the prosecutors are examining certain elements of Mr. Trump’s family business.

These two grafs are immaculately conceived and virgin birthed. There’s no source mentioned.

Yet  the NYT felt its readers would want to know now that the Special Counsel was looking into Trump’s LIV Golf business.

Or was it not that the public needed to know, but that the source felt others needed to know who had not known about this subpoena just as the public hadn’t known?

What are the chances this subpoena has been quiet not only for diplomatic reasons, but for counterintelligence reasons?

What are the chances other Trump courses have also been subpoenaed by the Special Counsel — those which have not been involved so far in LIV Golf?

~ 1 ~

NYT included a link to a graphic-centric report published in mid-December — Inside Mar-a-Lago, Where Thousands Partied Near Secret Files.

I admit to missing this piece at the time; it was published just as the news media enters its annual doldrums. Because the public is generally busy wrapping up both the end of the year and wrapping holiday presents, news readership falls off. Evergreen stuff is published, like ever popular year-end listicles – quick and easy to produce, keeps for a while, pure fluffy filler.

A graphic piece without a corresponding news peg fits this time period well and might have been a way to clean the NYT’s desk of a piece it couldn’t offer earlier. The interactive graphic report on Mar-a-Lago and the location of the presidential records and classified documents in the 20-acre facility ended up buried at the front end of the holiday dump zone.

But like other evergreen work, this piece kept well and suited the NYT’s article as an interstitial adder.

What puzzles me, though, is what the NYT’s team working on this piece — including Maggie Haberman — didn’t notice or didn’t point out there had been recent and obvious grounds work on the compound.

Note the yellow highlight I’ve added to this graphic:

As reported, there are two doors off the pool area which allow access to the hallway leading to the storage beneath Mar-a-Lago’s main floor – they’re highlighted in yellow.

I’ve also highlighted Trump’s personal office in the building to the right. It’s been noted there are stairs to the office which have not had a barrier to prevent access, except on rare occasions when a cordon has been strung across the first steps.

I suspect there’s an elevator in the building somewhere which hasn’t been mentioned because Trump’s physical condition (and possibly his neurological condition) makes it unlikely he climbs up nearly three flights of stairs on the regular.

Lastly, I’ve highlighted in the upper right the entrance to an underground tunnel. I know we’ve discussed it here before that there was at least one tunnel beneath Mar-a-Lago’s grounds, but unfortunately it was in comments and not in the body of a post. The tunnel I highlighted travels under the public roadway to the Mar-a-Lago beachhouse property on the other side of S. Ocean Boulevard. Anyone coming off the beach at the beachhouse can access this tunnel based on photos available across the internet.

Here are examples of photos on the internet showing the Mar-a-Lago property on both sides of the roadway.

This one is a Google Maps snapshot taken by Google as it scanned the road in February 2021 (gee, I wonder why the flag was at half mast).

On the left hidden behind greens and a low stucco wall is a stairwell to the tunnel beneath the roadway. On the right behind the greens is the tunnel’s other entrance leading to a walkway which traverses the lawn diagonally toward the buildings.

Here is a screen capture from an overhead video taken by drone, dated August 2022; I’ve circled the approximate entrances to the tunnels in orange. No idea the exact date this was taken, whether before or after the FBI served a warrant on Mar-a-Lago.

And here is another Google Maps snapshot taken by Google as it scanned the road in October 2022, before the NYT article but after the FBI served the warrant.

Note the wall at the corner over the tunnel, hiding the entrance from the road and any pedestrians on foot. The NYT’s interactive graphics piece shows this wall but makes no observation that work has been done at this corner.

Go a little further around the bend and you’ll not only see the grounds work in progress but at least one rental container within car lengths of the tunnel’s location.

Trump has owned Mar-a-Lago since 1985 and lived there on site when in Florida.

After all this time — at least eight years by the Google Street View photos available online — why was this amount of grounds work along this wall near the tunnel needed last year?

~ 0 ~

Like Trump’s disgusting habit of cheating at golf and like he cheats on his wives, his relationship with LIV Golf is all kinds of awkward and revolting.

Meanwhile, the Biden administration has had to play nicely with KSA this past month because of KSA’s role in helping get Americans out of Sudan.

They had to make all kinds of nice noises about this in spite of KSA fucking over Biden about oil production.

I can’t rule out there are even more awkward bits out there, like KSA’s new friendliness with Iran which may have been shaped by Trump’s assassination of General Soleimani, or China’s overtures with KSA and Iran which are likely efforts to smooth the way for China’s Belt and Road Initiative.

Nor have I forgotten the possibility that Trump’s war crime committed to obtain Syrian oil may begun with help and for the benefit of KSA. It crossed my mind when there were recent attacks in Syria on Americans that this matter may still be in play in spite of Biden administration’s change in sanctions for development of that Syrian oil — especially since the drone attack in al-Hasakah which killed an American contractor just happened to be in Block 26 in eastern Syria where Trump permitted oil development for his war crime.

We shouldn’t expect to hear much about the subpoena of LIV Golf business. There’s more likely to be news about specific Trump courses like Bedminster – the parent corporation already having been convicted of fraud.

But we can watch for geopolitical disturbances in tandem with the dates Trump courses host LIV Golf events.

Fri, May 26 – Sun, May 28
Trump National Golf Club Washington DC, Sterling, VA

Fri, Aug 11 – Sun, Aug 13
Trump National Golf Club Bedminster, Bedminster, NJ

Fri, Oct 20 – Sun, Oct 22
Trump National Doral Miami, Miami, FL

45 replies
  1. PeteT0323 says:

    Apropos of nothing to really do with this post, my 9 year old grand daughter wants to try golf. She is cycling through the sports/activities that catches her interest. Which is very fine.

    BMX biking – tried it – nope so far.

    Skateboarding shredding – nope – not so far.

    Softball. Started out as a slow pitch instructional last year, but went to “fast pitch” this year let me tell you 9-10 year olds cannot do fast pitch – well. It’s a wild pitch, walk-a-thon-stolen base bonanza. Boring.

    So, she’s mentioned golf and did go to a driving range.

    I keep telling my daughter-mom: tennis and I really like fencing.

    She has an attention span problem – very smart – but a bit ADHD. The stand around part of softball is not good for that.

    But a solo spot with a potential team aspect is said to be good. Tennis but maybe not fencing might fit the bill.


    • Patrick Carty says:

      I’ve been ADD for 50-plus years and struggled with sports until swimming. Not the best but nearly the best. In swimming practice there is silence and rhythm, and of course the music in your head you can’t escape from. Michael Phelps struggled with ADD and ultimately found redemption due to an ungodly workout regimen and determination. It might be a slow start to acclimate, but swimming benefits anyone who tries.

      • elcajon64 says:

        Both my kids took up swimming at an early age and continued through high school as water polo players. Not only did it have its own benefits, but provided other opportunities as well. Both became lifeguards at our city pool (a good gig for a teen) and volunteered as swim instructors for developmentally challenged kids for community service through HS. My youngest has continued in this track and is now an EMT.

    • P J Evans says:

      I met tennis in HS and hated it. In college, I took badminton and enjoyed it – it’s more active than you would think.

    • FLwolverine says:

      If there’s a good youth program in the area, you might suggest she try crew. Last spring I cajoled my then-14 year old granddaughter into attending a rowing camp and, despite her initial skepticism, she fell completely in love with the sport. Boats can have 8, 4, 2, or 1 rowers so both solo and team opportunities.

      Also there are a lot of rowing scholarships available for both men and women. My granddaughter liked the idea of using crew as a way to an Ivy League school; I told hurt it would also help with becoming a Rhodes Scholar.

      • Ginevra diBenci says:

        I joined the crew team as a freshman in college. Should have taken the presence of multiple Olympians as a warning; it’s a brutally demanding sport. Great workout if you don’t mind waking up before dawn to row, and then rowing again in the afternoon–if you’re not killing yourself on the machines.

    • Rayne says:

      Assuming you can find clubs for her size now and into high school for a reasonable price, learning golf on a range and trying out for a high school team is a relatively inexpensive way to get into the sport. If she had more serious interest, she could get a job when she’s a teen as a caddy; if there’s financial need she could try for the Evans scholarship.

      Both my kids have ADD to varying degrees — my daughter has a very mild case, my son is much more affected. Daughter played on the high school golf team, son didn’t but worked on the local golf course each summer to help pay for his own golf and sundries. Both of them are pretty good golfers; I wouldn’t let ADD get in the way if there’s genuine interest.

    • Purple Martin says:

      Pete, my 12 & 15-year-old granddaughters and 13-year-old grandson all live about 15-25 minutes of me, and started picking up Disc Golf up about three years ago. So far they mostly play with me (and sometimes their parents) on a course we can walk to from my house. I play 3-4 times a week, solo more often than not but also with others, and it has the same team aspects as stick golf (which I also play).

      They can all play decently now (not just throwing a toy around). The two youngest like it the most (15-year-old is getting interested in other things) and are enthusiastic about playing more this summer when school’s over (their weekends are already pretty full).

      It’s a great sport just to get out and be active in open green space (my goal, and it’s good for my own ADHD) but there are leagues and youth divisions at tournaments if they want to go that direction (youngest has a poster in her room of Paige Pierce, top woman pro disc golfer (at a skinny 5’5″) over the last decade).

      I left a too-long comment (unfortunate habit of mine) in the last Trash Talk post, with info about disc golf generally. Won’t repeat it here but describes the basics if you you want to check it out. Play on most public courses is free (often managed by Parks & Rec) and except on weekends you can usually just show up and start playing. A 9-year-old would start with 2-3 discs ($10 new) in the 115-125 gram range, available in starter sets of 3 or 4 at your local disc golf shop (or internet sellers like Infinite Discs or Disc Golf Center).

      Good Luck!

  2. AlaskaReader says:

    In case anyone maybe forgot, in February of 2021, US flags were ordered half staff in memorial to the first half a million American Covid deaths.

  3. Jharp jharp says:

    “Trump authorized assassination of Iran’s major general Qasem Soleimani by a U.S. drone strike near the Baghdad International Airport in Iraq”

    I don’t think Iran is going to let that one slide.

  4. matt fischer says:

    Rayne, is it intentional that your timeline does not list Khashoggi’s assassination in chronological order?

    • Rayne says:

      No, it’s probably me cutting and pasting stuff after midnight again. Let me look at it and fix it.

      I do know it looked an awful lot like Trump set immediately to work on stuff for KSA when he entered the White House. The Muslim ban was a distraction, a redirect — we none of us paid close enough attention to the fact KSA/Qatar/UAE citizens weren’t on the list that first week of his term, followed within the month by the change to monitoring extractive businesses.

      ADDER: Yeah, I had used more than 3 different timelines and I’d sorted part of a couple late one night — ended up with all the October stuff together regardless of year. Oops. It’s fixed now.

      But it drew attention to the fact I left a link off the page at the words “postmortem tacit approval” because Kushner had become bestest buddies with Bone Saw bin Salman in 2017 and continued to be his buddy well after Khashoggi was murdered.

      • Amicus12 says:

        Trump wanted to give the Saudi’s access to U.S. controlled nuclear technology not subject to nuclear non-proliferation restrictions. The practical import of this is that Trump was prepared to give the Saudi’s the Bomb.

        I think far too little attention has been given to this point by MSM or in political discourse. And I have always wondered how the $2 billion dollar payoff figures into this. A great deal of modern history has been shaped by countries’ efforts to obtain nuclear weapons.

        • Rayne says:

          Access to nuclear technology was discussed here at emptywheel in depth at the time. Search this site for posts by contributor Jim White and tags IP3 and Iron Bridge in particular.

          • Amicus12 says:

            For certain it was. But I did not see any outpouring of concern by large MSM. Clyburne made some fuss. But as so often happens(ed) in shiny new toy Trump world it became yesterday’s story. If the Saudi’s tried once to get the Bomb from Trump they will try again, should he be re-elected.

  5. Alan Charbonneau says:

    You asked: “After all this time — at least eight years by the Google Street View photos available online — why was this amount of grounds work along this wall near the tunnel needed last year?”

    I checked Florida’s DOT website, and it might be related to the “Southern Boulevard (State Road 80) Bridge Replacement Project”

    Project description: “Work includes replacing the existing bascule (draw) bridge and tide relief bridge over the Intracoastal Waterway (ICWW) and Lake Worth Lagoon between the Town of Palm Beach and the City of West Palm Beach. A temporary bridge will be built north of the existing bridge to maintain traffic while the replacement bascule bridge is under construction. New decorative lighting, pedestrian features, traffic signals, signage and drainage are also included.”

    It’s a multi-year project which started in April, 2017, and is expected to finish this year, which might explain why the work was needed last year. However, I looked at the map of the construction zone and it is about 100 yards from the area you mentioned (it starts where Southern blvd meets S. Ocean Blvd), so it might be unrelated. OTOH, the work has involved clearing trees and vines, bushes, etc. so clearing up the lines-of-sight for traffic might be part of getting the new bridge open, even if it’s 100 yards away from where construction begins.

    Just guessing here.

    • Rayne says:

      Yeah, sure, sure. That FDOT work explains the rental container inside the wall on Mar-a-Lago grounds. /snark

      • Alan Charbonneau says:

        I get that the rental container wouldn’t be for an FDOT project. But I also don’t think you’d rent it for clearing overgrowth, certainly not the amount of overgrowth surrounding that wall.

        Using Google Earth I measured the amount of land cleared at about 300 feet long. The pics seem to indicate the wall is about 10 feet from the road. You’d need a chipper/shredder for that sized project and multiple trucks to haul stuff away – a dumpster wouldn’t do. I do see a small amount of repair work on the wall itself which could explain the dumpster.

        In the Google map street level, when you get to the traffic circle the images turn into the earlier, overgrown stucco wall. You can see that the traffic circle sign is almost obscured by vegetation, so perhaps the city completed a cleanup or ordered Trump to clean up the overgrowth.

        • Rayne says:

          And yet if you look through the Google Street View images going back to 2014, there have been regular trims of all the plant growth along that corner. What’s more interesting to me is the utility marking on the ground outside the wall — I wonder if some of the marks aren’t just for utilities but to indicate the presence of the tunnel below.

          I mean, if a contractor for FDOT was digging there they’d want to know about the tunnel, amiright?

          The timing is just an amazing coincidence, too — after Trump is no longer president, within 6 weeks of the FBI serving a warrant on Mar-a-Lago.

          • P J Evans says:

            All those red telecom markings in the dirt between the wall and the curb! (The yellow is usually gas pipe.)

            • Rayne says:

              Yeah, that’s what I thought, huh? What an odd time to have to do so much marking of telecom infrastructure.

              • theGeoguy says:

                A red markout is for electric power and orange is for telecom. If the tunnel was marked out it might be with pink which is for other or unknown, (assuming it’s a proper markout.)

                • Rayne says:

                  Thanks. It’s difficult to distinguish orange from pink if there’s any pink there at all; the photos have an orange bias to them.

                  I’ll have to see if it’s possible to rotate that Street View a bit.

                    • Alan Charbonneau says:

                      I just noticed the article is from Jan, 2017 so it’s possible that the description of moving water lines and fiber optic cables may not be related to last year’s construction. Also, the article says the work is being performed on Southern Blvd, whereas Google maps shows it ans Ocean Blvd. But Ocean Blvd. and Southern have a confluence where the work is being done.

  6. dadidoc1 says:

    Shouldn’t there be construction permits from the city or county that would describe alterations on Mar-a-Lago? Thank you for the excellent connecting of the dots. The LIV tour will be teeing off in Tulsa, OK tomorrow. Thunderstorms are forecast for part of the weekend.

    • Rayne says:

      There’s some wicked ass weather on the forecast map for Tornado Alley. Glad I’m not going to be there.

  7. Raven Eye says:

    I ended up taking a look at the Palm Beach County property map just to get a feel for how much property is owned there…A couple more properties than I expected.

  8. Inwoods says:

    > October 2, 2018 — Jamal Khashoggi assassinated by dismemberment at the order of KSA’s crown prince Mohammad bin Salman.

    This seems out of sequence if everything is meant to flow by date. It fits in by month and day, but not by year. It’s the only one like this.

    • Rayne says:

      Damn, looks like my last update reverted to the previous version. Too many tabs open, I think. Look again, hope it stays put this time. Thanks.

      • EuroTark says:

        Not to be a nuissance, but I’d recommend looking into ISO 8601 (aka ISO date format). It takes some getting used to, but has the huge benefit of having components in descending order for easy and natural sorting.

        I do love your focus on this area; I fondly remember one of your early (I believe) posts on all the ways to grift off a golf course. Real eye-opened.

  9. bidrec says:

    In 1960 the world’s largest slave market was in Riyadh according to “The Slaves of Timbuktu” by Robin Maugham.

  10. StillHopeful says:

    Maybe a little off topic.

    I am wondering if, since TFG is found guilty of sexual harassment in a civic trial, does he now have to register as a sexual offender?

    • bmaz says:

      No. Not found “guilty”. Liable for defamation. And, no, thankfully, nobody has to register as a sex offender from a simple civil judgment in a defamation case.

    • Molly Pitcher says:

      Yeah, bummer of a birthday for Mr Pitcher. We had to turn the sound off in the second half.

      I think Bob Myers made some head scratching decisions prior to this season, and at the Allstar break. Why did they keep Iguodala, whom I love, but is definitely beyond his sell-by date?

      Why was so little done to find some sort of replacement for Wiseman? The lack of a mobile Big really crippled us. Loony was a rebounding machine, but he cannot handle the other Bigs in the league.

      The Warriors have some serious thinking and greatly needed action ahead of them, starting immediately. Steph, Klay and Dray need to take pay cuts so the Warriors can bring the needed talent to support them, now that the NBA has monkeyed with the salary cap rules to keep Joe Lacob from just ponying up the salary cap tax.

      Draymond has recently said he wants to play 4 more years and retire as a Warrior. Both Kerr and Tom Izzo have said that not only is Draymond the smartest basketball mind they have ever met, but he is one of the smartest guys they have ever met. If Klay and Steph still want to compete as much as they have claimed, they can still get another Championship, but only if they have the supporting cast that has been missing this year. And Jordan Poole needs to be traded yesterday, there was a reason Draymond punched him in camp,

  11. Vinnie Gambone says:

    Recall seeing congressional hearings on how mafia figures got their cut from ” owning” fighters.

    In essence, the trainers. the gyms, the arenas, the camps, everyone was overpaid, had gotten their gig via the mob, and all kicked back.
    So Smitty’s investigation should be pretty easy. Just look in the paperwork for extravagant expenses that got paid.

    i don’t know why, but im having flash backs to Bill Murray in Caddy Shack.

  12. Ginevra diBenci says:

    Ten years ago I published a book co-written with a PGA teaching pro, mostly about his coaching experience. Most vivid, however, was how he ended up mentoring the young Zimbabwean golfer Lewis Chitengwa (Jr.), who had come here to attend UVA. My co-author was head pro at Charlottesville CC at the time; his family took in Lewis when he learned he would not be allowed to matriculate at UVA before patching certain holes in his academic background, and his scholarship made no provision for this pre-enrollment period.

    Lewis had just become the first Black golfer to win the South African Amateur tournament. Greg Norman noticed, made quite a show of ‘discovering’ him and connecting with his family (Lewis Sr. was a golf coach in Harare) and recommending that he go to America. But Norman was nowhere when Lewis found himself confused, alone, and essentially homeless.

    Later, when Lewis began his career with great promise, Norman popped up again to give quotes and take credit. I got to know many quality people in the golf world working on this book. Greg Norman? Not one of them.

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