Cut Line: Spieth starts strong; Mickelson ‘hopeful’

first_imgJordan Spieth highlights this week’s edition following a victory on Sunday at the Hyundai Tournament of Champions and an even bigger haul on Wednesday in the boardroom. Made Cut A Coke and a smile. The debate over whether golf is entering the Jordan Spieth era is a trail that, at least right now, has no end, but there was no denying the 22-year-old’s influence following an eventful week both on and off the golf course. Spieth began his season with an eight-stroke victory in Maui last week to quiet the concerns over a possible fall off from last year’s brilliant performance, and on Wednesday he announced he had signed a multi-year endorsement deal with Coca-Cola. In the same news cycle, Golf Digest released its list of top earners for 2015 with Spieth unseating Tiger Woods atop the heap with $53 million in on- and off-course earnings. Woods, who had been No. 1 on the annual list since it began in 2002, slipped to third behind No. 2 Phil Mickelson, who had a reported $52.3 million in earnings despite a relatively pedestrian year on the course. Rory McIlroy, Jason Day and Rickie Fowler, to name a few, may eventually overtake Spieth, but until then it’s Jordan’s world. A new beginning. As Tim Clark completed his week at the RSM Classic late last year he was approached by a pair of reporters who were looking for reaction to his final Tour round with an anchored putter. “I don’t care,” he sighed. The South African was resigned to the impending ban on the anchored stroke, which began last week at the Tournament of Champions, and despite his early objections to the new rule he seemed to look forward to the long debate ending. “Honestly, I’ve been putting so bad no matter what I’ve used,” he said in October at Sea Island (Ga.) Resort. “Once it’s done I can move on and get to work on something and stick with it.” With that fresh perspective came some positive results on Thursday at the Sony Open, where he opened with a 66 thanks in large part to a strokes gained-putting average of 2.63. If Clark continues to trend in this direction he may end up thanking the U.S. Golf Association and Royal & Ancient for the rule change … or not. Requited Love. For the better part of three decades Davis Love III has been what scribes would consider a “go to” player when it came to all things golf. After multiple stints on the PGA Tour policy board, a turn as the U.S. Ryder Cup captain (with a second chance looming later this year) and a lifetime between the ropes, Love can handle a delicate policy question with the same ease as a 2-iron off a hanging lie. This week the Golf Writers Association of America recognized that commitment to cooperation when the organization named Love the recipient of the Jim Murray Award, which is given annually to the player who “demonstrates cooperation and accommodation to the media.” In a time when the relationship between player and press has grown increasingly strained, Love is a beacon of accommodation regardless of how ridiculous the question may be (and we’ve asked some dreadful questions in our time). As Love explained last fall after a lengthy Q&A regarding Tiger Woods’ upcoming 40th birthday, “It’s fine. It’s my job … I’m the captain.” Made Cut-Did Not Finish (MDF) What will Phil do next? Speaking of Mickelson, the southpaw was on Golf Channel’s “Morning Drive” on Wednesday and painted an interesting picture of his future. Mickelson described his outlook for 2016 as “optimistic, but I’m also nervous.” He left swing coach Butch Harmon last year and has reportedly started a rather dramatic swing overhaul under the watchful eye of Australian instructor Andrew Getson. After failing to advance to the Tour Championship for the second consecutive year in 2015, Mickelson plans to get his season underway at next week’s CareerBuilder Challenge. “I’m hopeful that this off-season, the work I’ve put in, will get my swing back on the plane that it has been in the past, and allow me to hit the shots I’ve been able to hit as I did in the past,” Lefty said. Tweet of the week: @TigerWoods “Had fun teaming up with [Michelle Wie] today for @TWFoundation. Thanks for the assist. #GoStanford The goods news: Woods was at a golf course. The bad news: he didn’t appear to be hitting golf balls. #Progress.last_img read more

Nicklaus, son to attend Trump inauguration

first_imgJack Nicklaus said his schedule kept him from going to two previous presidential inaugurations, but he plans to be in Washington next month when president-elect Donald Trump is sworn in. And he won’t be alone. “Donald called and said, ‘I want you to bring that kid that can really talk,’” Nicklaus said. That kid is 55-year-old Jack Nicklaus II. Trump still raves about the speech Jackie Nicklaus gave when his father was awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor. “Every time he talks to Barbara and me he says, ‘That is the best speech I ever heard,’” Nicklaus said. “He called personally to ask me to come.” Nicklaus has known Trump for years and designed Trump Golf Links at Ferry Point in the Bronx.last_img

Tour players’ lives just as real as ours

first_imgFORT WORTH, Texas – These guys don’t have bad days at the office, at least not in the traditional sense. Sure, PGA Tour players will make bogeys, miss cuts and regularly come up short playing a game that takes far more than it ever gives, but when a play-for-pay type punches the metaphorical time clock at the end of the day they are still playing golf for a living – it’s a reality check that’s almost universally acknowledged. But it’s because their worlds are filled with occupational rainbows and unicorns that there’s a tendency to ignore the most basic elements of human existence. Every life, even one lived between the ropes playing for millions in prize money, is filled with peaks and valleys. As easy at it may be to overlook the obvious, life can be just a messy for a Tour player as it is for anyone else. On Sunday following his fourth Tour victory at the AT&T Byron Nelson, Billy Horschel hinted as much, talking of “his own challenges” that made this triumph that much more special. He didn’t give any specifics. It wasn’t his place. But less than 24 hours later while playing in a charity event, Horschel’s wife, Brittany, texted him a “statement” she wanted to post on social media. “I called her and I said, ‘We don’t need to do this.’ She said, ‘No, I’m ready. I’m ready to share our story and start helping people,’” Horschel said. Brittany Horschel posted the statement on Twitter, explaining that she was suffering from alcoholism and spent roughly two months undergoing treatment last year at a center in south Florida. “Billy had to take on the 100 percent responsibility of taking care of our then-1 1/2 year old daughter, moving us into our new home, competing on Tour and God only knows what else and what all went through that man’s head during that time,” Brittany Horschel wrote. “He silently battled through, with support from family and close friends, a very sad, scary and trying time.” Dean & DeLuca Invitational: Articles, photos and videos During the timeframe Brittany Horschel was undergoing treatment, her husband posted just a single top-10 finish on Tour and slid to 71st on the season-long points list before an August rally propelled him to the third playoff stop. Horschel’s victory on Sunday at the Nelson was his first on Tour in more than two years, but none of that, he will tell you, had anything to do with his wife’s battle with alcoholism. “That’s not the reason why I haven’t played well for the last year,” he said on Tuesday at the Dean & DeLuca Invitational. “That’s not a reason at all. But it’s something that’s on my mind, something I think about on a constant basis.” The way Horschel sees things, how someone deals with success isn’t nearly as telling as how they handle adversity, although for those watching from outside the fish bowl the latter more often than not gets overlooked. Late last summer, Ryan Palmer’s wife, Jennifer, was diagnosed with stage 2 breast cancer and she had surgery six weeks later. Like it is for many, Palmer’s job became an outlet, an escape from reality, but it was always fleeting. “I get those four, five hours of just [caddie James Edmondson] and I playing golf. I was able to spend five hours a day not thinking about anything else,” Palmer said. “That helps relieve stress and pressures, but then afterwards you get home and it’s back to reality and everything.” According to Palmer, Jennifer is doing “great,” and is scheduled to have her chemotherapy ports removed in August. “All is good,” he smiled on Tuesday. Palmer – who didn’t play last fall so he could be at home with his wife while see underwent therapy – was on a similar emotional rollercoaster two years ago when his father, Charles, died in a traffic accident just before the playoffs, and when he showed up at Colonial for last year’s Dean & DeLuca Invitational the loss was still weighing on him. “Last year’s Colonial was the first time he wasn’t there and this is his favorite tournament of the year,” Palmer said. “It was a special week. I had a chance to win and for the first time he wasn’t here.” It’s often too easy to forget that the players who appear so in control on Sunday afternoons vying for trophies deal with the same emotions as those who watch their accomplishments. For the likes of Horschel or Palmer, a bad day at the office may be relative compared with those who endure a more traditional workweek, but off the golf course the often-harsh realities of life are no different. “My wife is one year sober,” said Horschel with more than a touch of pride in his voice. “The journey is not over. It’ll never be over. But we’re on the right path, and every day we have challenges, just like everyone else in the world. We’re no different.”last_img read more

Flesch wins first Champions event in 38 holes

first_imgDULUTH, Ga. – Steve Flesch needed 38 holes Saturday to win the Mitsubishi Electric Classic for his first PGA Tour Champions victory. The 50-year-old Flesch won with a birdie on the second hole of a playoff with Scott Parel at TPC Sugarloaf in the event completed a day early because of forecast rain and lightning. Bernhard Langer dropped out on the first extra hole. ”You never know if you’re ever going to win again,” Flesch said. ”Honestly, it’s been harder than I anticipated winning on this tour. The guys are so good. That Langer guy is hard to beat.” Parel bogeyed the par-5 18th on the second playoff hole after his approach hit the bank short and left and went into the water. ”I just was in between clubs a little bit,” Parel said. ”I had like 209 (yards), which is probably about as bad a yardage that I can have, so I had to kind of choke up on a hybrid a little bit and not try to hit it too hard. If I hit it right, a normal shot’s going to be in the bunker, which is no bargain. I just didn’t hit it as crisply as I needed to.” Flesch hit long and right into the back bunker, and blasted out to 3 feet. The left-hander won in his 22nd start on the 50-and-over tour after winning four times on the PGA Tour. Full-field scores from the Mitsubishi Electric Classic ”When Scott hit it in the water, the most important thing for me was to obviously not hit it in the water.” Flesch said. ”So, I just changed my line where I aimed. I didn’t aim it as close to the hole. I made sure that my mistake was going to be long in the bunker and just clear the water.” Facing a forecast of 1 1/2 inches of rain overnight Sunday and the threat of lightning Sunday, tournament officials decided Friday to play both the second and third rounds Saturday. ”Any 36-hole day is really tough,” Flesch said. ”Being able to use the carts today certainly helped with some of the hills out there here at Sugarloaf. It’s more mentally taxing to me than physically taxing, especially if you’re in the mix kind of like that all day. I know I’ll sleep great tonight, but mentally I’m more exhausted than physically.” Because of the possibility of the playoff finishing Sunday, the players were allowed to lift, clean and place their golf balls in the fairway during the extra holes. Flesch and Parel birdied the 18th to start the playoff. Flesch and Parel each reached the green in two, with Parel leaving a 60-foot eagle try 3 feet short, and Flesch rolling a 50-footer to a foot. Langer laid up and missed a 15-foot birdie try. Parel matched the course record with an 8-under 64, making a 15-foot birdie putt on 18 in regulation to post at 11 under. Flesch and Langer missed chances to win on 18 in regulation. Flesch missed a long eagle try, and Langer’s 15-foot birdie putt went to the left. Flesch shot 68, and Langer had a 69. Flesch opened with a 66 and shot 71 in the morning to enter the final round a stroke behind Langer, Jay Haas and Jerry Kelly. The 52-year-old Parel’s only tour victory came in 2013 on the Tour. ”Obviously, I would have liked to win, but Steve played great, too, and hit some great shots in the playoff.” Parel said. ”He deserved it. I feel like I’m close, so we’ll just keep trying to make birdies out here and see what happens.” Langer missed a chance to break a tie with Hale Irwin for consecutive seasons with a victory at 12. The 60-year-old German star has 36 senior victories, winning at TPC Sugarloaf in 2013. ”I’ve been playing all right for most of the year, just my short game wasn’t good enough,” Langer said. ”The short game was better, I made a few putts.” Haas, the first-round leader after a 65 at age 64, shot 71-71 on Saturday to finish two strokes out of the playoff. He dropped back with bogeys on Nos. 15 and 16. Mike Fetchick is the oldest winner in tour history, taking the 1985 Hilton Head Seniors Invitational at 63 years to the day. Wes Short Jr. was fifth at 8 under after a 70, and Vijay Singh had a 68 to get to 7 under.last_img read more

PGA Tour’s season of change is over and it ended with a bang

first_imgWhen the PGA Tour deconstructs this past season and all of its sweeping changes, from the PGA Championship’s move to March to an experimental scoring format at the finale, there’ll be more room to tinker. There is some irony that one of the biggest issues with the new season involved points, which was exactly why the circuit changed to last week’s strokes-based scoring at the Tour Championship. The problem is really a philosophical one with players, and some fans and media, unable to reconcile the notion that Patrick Reed won three times more FedExCup points (2,000) than Tiger Woods did for winning the Masters (600). It’s certain that Woods didn’t leave Augusta National lamenting his limited points haul, but it is an issue that the Tour will likely address in the coming weeks. There were also some who suggested the staggered start to the finale – which included the points leader beginning the week at 10 under all the way down to No. 30 on the list starting at even par – needs to be adjusted to better account for playoff performances. But for all the nip/tucks, the Tour can embrace the notion that this version of a post-season had all the basic elements of a playoff. Your browser does not support iframes. Potential. So much potential, with five of the top six players on the leaderboard entering the final round of the Tour Championship ranked inside the top 10 in the world, including No. 1 Brooks Koepka and 2 Rory McIlroy. “If you look at the way it all played out, you had the No. 1 and 2 in the regular season FedExCup standings playing in the final group this week, so I think it worked out well,” said McIlroy, who pulled away from the field late Sunday for a commanding four-stroke victory. “I was part of that decision to go with the staggered format. I talked about it in meetings and debated it and all sorts, and it definitely simplifies it for us playing and also for the fans.” Pain. As in the kind of pain like Dustin Johnson’s financial freefall, which saw him struggle to rounds of 73-72-75-73 at East Lake and finish tied 29th in the season-long race. For those keeping track, that’s a difference of nearly $1 million compared to where he started the playoffs at seventh on the list, which would have been worth $1.3 million. They say top players aren’t motivated by money. Perhaps, but this is a performance that DJ will remember regardless of the forgettable payday. Your browser does not support iframes. Providence. Say what you want about Big Game Brooks’ perceived indifference to non-Grand Slam glory, but his performance at East Lake for the better part of four rounds was major worthy. Even without his best stuff off the tee, Koepka kept pace with McIlroy in what felt like a continuation of the duo’s duel at last month’s WGC-FedEx St. Jude Invitational. Koepka has proven himself an impressive leading man all the way down to his “off-white” kicks. (“It’s fashion, bro,” he said on Friday when asked to describe the style.) But like most front-runners he’s at his best when he’s being pushed and no one in the game is able to push Koepka like McIlroy. “I’ve played a lot with him over the last couple weeks and his game is in great form right now. It’s really impressive to watch,” Koepka said. “I’ve said multiple times, he’s the most fun to watch when he’s playing well. He hits it so good, he putts it really well, and when he’s on, man, he’s tough to beat.” Whether it was simply blind luck or a playoff format that heavily favors the top players, the result was a memorable Sunday and a finish that transcended the new format with McIlroy winning both the net and gross divisions. This wasn’t perfect and it might not ever be beyond reproach, but the result was all that mattered. “It’s golf, and I think golf is very averse to change sometimes, so it’ll take a while to get used to, but I think for the first run of it, I think it went well,” McIlroy said. Other sports have playoffs with more possibilities than problems, why not golf? For all the sideways glances, the new format gave us Koepka and McIlroy, the year’s two best players, in the final group on Sunday. No, the system isn’t perfect but in this case maybe it is the destination and not the journey that’s important.last_img read more

Back against the wall, M. Lee wins ANA playoff

first_imgIn a wild finish that was defined as much by the wall lining the 18th green as the play that occurred on it, Mirim Lee and her magical short game delivered a breakthrough major title. The ANA Inspiration packed all of the drama of a major championship, even if the fans weren’t there to see it at Mission Hills Country Club. Lee was an unexpected entrant into a three-way playoff, having chipped in for eagle on the 72nd hole, and she was viewed as a longshot in overtime when facing two of the top 9 players in the world, Nelly Korda and Brooke Henderson. But after the two more decorated players faltered on the first extra hole, Lee coolly sank a 6-foot birdie putt that delivered her first LPGA win in more than three years and ensured a jump into Poppie’s Pond. Lee, 29, started the day two shots off the lead shared by Korda and Henderson and put together a rally that was fueled in large part by a trio of unexpected hole-outs from off the green. The first came at the par-4 sixth, her second birdie of the day, and she holed a 30-yard, downhill chip on No. 16 to move within a shot of the lead. A subsequent bogey on No. 17 seemingly knocked her out of contention, but instead it set up the first chapter of theatrics featuring the signature hole on the Dinah Shore Tournament Course and the blue façade surrounding the back of the island green. M. Lee leaps into Poppie’s Pond after ANA triumph While players are used to an approach shot framed by grandstands and galleries behind the 18th hole, the fans were nowhere to be seen this week because of the COVID-19 pandemic. But the visual was nonetheless largely similar, with a blue wall lining the back of the green, placed even closer to the action than the grandstands would normally sit and becoming a discussion point for much of the week. Lee’s approach into the final green would have likely sailed into the water over the green, but she purposely played a bank shot into the wall that stopped the ball just a few feet off the putting surface. Her eagle chip was the third and most important hole-out of the day, capping a final-round 67 and giving the South Korean the clubhouse lead and ultimately a spot in the playoff. “I definitely thought to utilize the back and the backboard,” Lee said. “When I had practice rounds, I had practiced that shot. So it was a definite for me to use the space there.” Henderson was the next to encounter the wall, firing a 5-wood missile from the rough that actually went under the wall, requiring a head-turning search by volunteers and masked marshals to find the ball. After taking free relief, she got up and down to finish the week alongside Lee at 15 under. But while Lee flourished with wedge in hand, Henderson faltered with the putter. Short misses became the story of her day, as the Canadian stumbled to a double bogey on No. 13 and missed a handful of mid-range birdie chances on the back nine. While she holed an important putt on No. 16 to keep alive her chances of a second major title, Henderson’s lengthy eagle putt on the first extra hole raced past. Her subsequent birdie attempt from 8 feet didn’t touch the hole and set the stage for Lee’s clincher. “I feel like I missed a lot of putts, especially those final (holes) where I feel like maybe it could have been a different story,” Henderson said after a closing 69. “But Mirim and Nelly played great, and I really fought my way around. So I’m happy.” Full-field scores from the ANA Inspiration Korda appeared to be the one in control for much of the back nine, only to let a potential first major slip away on the par-5 18th. Seemingly locked in a head-to-head duel with Henderson down the stretch, she followed the Canadian’s double bogey at No. 13 by stuffing her tee shot on the short 14th. After rolling in the subsequent putt, she held a two-shot lead with four holes to go. But Lee’s short-game theatrics drew her even as Korda played the final hole of regulation, unaware of the eagle hole-out that had occurred in front of her. Korda hooked her drive into the left rough, necessitating a layup and leading to a disappointing par. She followed the same script in the playoff, pulling her tee shot and ultimately leaving a 20-foot birdie putt short. “I played solid today. Had a couple bogeys kind of starting on the back nine, but I kept my calm,” Korda said. “Didn’t hit a really good shot on 18 off the tee both times, so that’s what kind of got me in trouble there.” While Korda and Henderson were left to rue missed chances, and the greenside wall played a larger role than perhaps tournament officials would have preferred, the day belonged to Lee. Entering the week at No. 94 in the world, she had missed both cuts since the break and had won just once on the LPGA since 2015. But thanks to a trio of chip-ins in the final round and a timely birdie in the playoff, she rallied from the pack to chase down two more accomplished players and left with the major hardware. And on a whirlwind afternoon filled with dramatics and career-changing moments, doubt only crept in for Lee during the champion’s traditional leap into Poppie’s Pond. “Usually I’m not afraid of water, but the pool looked a little deep,” Lee said. “So it’s true that at that moment, I hesitated a little bit.”last_img read more

More on Winston Ewert’s “Dependency Graph of Life” — An Important New Paper

first_imgSeveral articles at Evolution News have explained the significance of Winston Ewert’s important new BIO-Complexity article. I would like to contribute one more. This one is very short and simple but attempts to give a broader overview of the paper’s significance.Since 1985 I have been arguing that the evolution of life looks much like the evolution of software and other human technology. My main argument, for example in a 2000 Mathematical Intelligencer article, pointed to the fact that according to the fossil record, major new features (new orders, classes, and phyla) appear abruptly, just as major new features in the development of, for example, my PDE solver, appear abruptly, and for the same reason. You only have to think about what gradual development of new organs, or new systems of organs, would look like, or what the gradual development of major new software features would look like, to understand why they must appear abruptly: intermediate stages would usually have to involve incipient new, but not yet useful, features.Evolution of Life, and of SoftwareMore recently I have called attention to another way in which the evolution of life mimics the evolution of software or other human technology. (For example, in the last segment of this video, or in “I Believe in the Evolution of Life and the Evolution of Automobiles.”) In both cases, similar new features frequently arise independently in distant branches of the “evolutionary tree.” This is called “convergence.” For example, when Ford automobiles and Boeing jets evolve similar new GPS systems, or when bats and whales develop sonar echolocation independently, they are converging and becoming more alike, at least in one attribute, rather than diverging and becoming more distinct. My video notes that the basic types of carnivorous plant traps each evolved multiple times independently.This phenomenon of convergence is so ubiquitous that it has become a major problem for evolutionists. As Cornelius Hunter points out in “The Real Problem with Convergence,” the problem is not only that it is hard to believe that very different species would develop similar new features independently: anyone who is able to believe that eyes developed though random processes once will find a way to believe they developed multiple times by chance, as Hunter says. The problem is it destroys the tree of life! Contrary to what the textbooks tell us, the similarities among species do not really point to a strict tree structure of common descent. They look more like the way a designer creates new software or technology products: a designer is free to reuse software modules or pieces of engineering technology from multiple previous products, not just from direct “ancestors” of the new product. New species and new products do, nevertheless, often inherit much of their “technology” from one ancestor.Not the Best Explanation?Winston Ewert has now provided evidence in a quantitative and objective way, by examining several publicly available protein data sets, that a tree of life may not be the best explanation for the similarities between species. Instead, a dependency graph, like that used to document the dependencies of new software products on modules in earlier products, thus explaining the similarities between these products, appears to be a much better model for the similarities between species.  Further work is needed to confirm his results.The bottom line is: the pattern of similarities between species looks more like that arising when intelligent humans develop software or other technologies, and less like that expected to arise from Darwin’s tree of descent with modification. And we have not even mentioned the strongest and most obvious connection between the evolution of computer programs and the evolution of the DNA code in living things. That is the absurdity of attributing the information contained in either to anything other than an intelligent programmer!Editor’s note: For more on Winston Ewert’s paper, see:“BIO-Complexity Presents Better Model than Common Ancestry for Explaining Pattern of Nature”“New Paper by Winston Ewert Demonstrates Superiority of Design Model”“The Dependency Graph Hypothesis — How It Is Inferred”“Response to a Critic: But What About Undirected Graphs?”“Of Species and Software: What Is a Dependency Graph?”Photo: California pitcher plant (Darlingtonia californica), a carnivorous plant, by Noah Elhardt, via Wikimedia Commons. Evolution Jane Goodall Meets the God Hypothesis Email Print Google+ Linkedin Twitter Share Congratulations to Science Magazine for an Honest Portrayal of Darwin’s Descent of Man Email Print Google+ Linkedin Twitter Share Origin of Life: Brian Miller Distills a Debate Between Dave Farina and James Tour “A Summary of the Evidence for Intelligent Design”: The Study Guidecenter_img Recommended TagsancestorsautomobilesbatsBIO-ComplexityBoeingCalifornia pitcher plantcarnivorous plantsclassesconvergenceCornelius Hunterdependency graphDNAecholocationEngineeringevolutionFordGPS systemsintelligent designjetsMathematical IntelligencermodulesordersPDE solverphylaprogrammersoftwareTechnologytextbooksTree of LifewhalesWinston Ewert,Trending Requesting a (Partial) Retraction from Darrel Falk and BioLogos Intelligent Design More on Winston Ewert’s “Dependency Graph of Life” — An Important New PaperGranville SewellAugust 6, 2018, 12:25 PM Granville SewellGranville Sewell is professor of mathematics at the University of Texas El Paso. He has written four books on numerical analysis, most recently Solving Partial Differential Equation Applications with PDE2D, John Wiley, 2018. In addition to his years at UTEP, has been employed by Universidad Simon Bolivar (Caracas), Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Purdue University, IMSL Inc., The University of Texas Center for High Performance Computing and Texas A&M University, and spent a semester (1999) at Universidad Nacional de Tucuman on a Fulbright scholarship, and another semester (2019) at the UNAM Centro de Geociencas in Queretaro, Mexico. Share 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

Physicians Should Prescribe Pills, not Politics

first_imgOrigin of Life: Brian Miller Distills a Debate Between Dave Farina and James Tour TagsaddictionAffordable Care ActBellevue HospitalDanielle Ofridoctorsexam roomhealthhealthy lifestylesinsurance coverageNew York TimesnurseNYU Medical Schoolopioid epidemicpatientsPoliticsRudolf Virchow,Trending Jane Goodall Meets the God Hypothesis “A Summary of the Evidence for Intelligent Design”: The Study Guide Email Print Google+ Linkedin Twitter Share Email Print Google+ Linkedin Twitter Share They want to politicize everything! Now, in the name of promoting “health,” doctors are urged to engage their patients about politics.At least, that’s the gist of a column in the New York Times by Bellevue Hospital physician and NYU Medical School professor Danielle Ofri, who argues that since part of a doctor’s work entails helping patients live healthy lifestyles, physicians should therefore engage their patients politically in the clinical setting to highlight policies (liberal, of course) that she sees as germane to that effort.A Prescription for PoliticsFrom “Doctors Should Tell Their Patients to Vote” (my emphasis):Suddenly, like Dr. Virchow [a 19th-century German doctor who wrote a report castigating public policies he believed responsible for a typhus epidemic], we are recognizing that our purview extends to the entire structure of our society and that politics is, as he put it, “nothing else but medicine on a large scale.”Political decisions that affect insurance coverage, access to medical care, housing, minimum wage, immigration law, water sources — just to name a few examples — exert medical effects that are comparable with those of major diseases. Just ask the people of Flint, Mich.…Now, as our society feels increasingly fractured, the health threats seem even more alarming. Growing income inequality, disregard of environmental hazards, and the undermining of social safety nets all stand to harm our patients’ health. Dr. Virchow’s words from 170 years ago about the creep of religion into state affairs, the outsize power of the wealthy and the autocratic impulses of government feel unsettlingly contemporary.Doctors have every right to — and should — engage individually and collectively in the political life of the nation. But should that extend to their interactions with individual patients in the clinical setting? Apparently so:So is it time for doctors to pull out our prescription pads and, like Dr. Virchow, start prescribing democracy?This may seem like a radical extension of the medical mandate, but the poorer and the sicker our patients are, the more likely they are to be disenfranchised. Those with the most to lose are least likely to have their voices heard.Of course no one should be advocating political viewpoints in the exam room — patients need a neutral, nonjudgmental atmosphere to feel secure. But civic engagement is nonpartisan.“Viewpoints” in the Exam Room?Considering the repeated examples she gives of the political issues doctors should address with patients — and the apparent approach she believes they should promote — does anyone believe her disclaimer that “viewpoints” would not be advocated in the exam room? I don’t. And frankly, neither does she:When patients say they can’t afford their medicine, fear being bankrupted by medical bills, or struggle to find treatment for an addiction, we typically offer sympathy for these heartbreaking and seemingly intractable issues.But might it be our responsibility to point out that these problems are not just bad luck but also the result of political decisions?Ofri wants hospitals to become centers of voter registration:When patients are admitted to the hospital, they are asked about their tobacco use and their flu shots, their employment status and their religious affiliation. Why not ask if they are registered to vote? Just as hospitals and clinics help the uninsured obtain coverage, they should also help eligible voters register.Is she kidding? The last thing sick people need while being admitted to a hospital is a nurse or clerk trying to get out the vote.No. I don’t want to be harangued by my doctor about politics during a physical. I don’t want my doctor asking me if I have guns or preaching to me about firearms policy (as some have urged they do). I don’t want to hear my doctor pontificating about the Affordable Care Act or what our public policy should be about the opioid epidemic. All of that would happen inevitably once politics enter the exam or treatment room.Photo: Doctor draws blood while explaining the importance of voter registration, by Linda Bartlett [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons Cross-posted at The Corner. Congratulations to Science Magazine for an Honest Portrayal of Darwin’s Descent of Man 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 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 Requesting a (Partial) Retraction from Darrel Falk and BioLogos Medicine Physicians Should Prescribe Pills, not PoliticsWesley J. SmithOctober 22, 2018, 5:06 PM Recommendedlast_img read more

Nomad Delivers First Disaster Response Vehicles to Corps of Engineers

first_imgWill Schmautz, Nomad’s CEO, said his company is the only manufacturer of these types of vehicles for the Corps. After the current 12-vehicle contract is complete, with deliveries staggered through March, Schmautz said eight more could follow.“The project has gone exceptionally well,” Schmautz said. “So well in fact, they have found a need for more.”The fact that Nomad is working with a high-profile client like the Corps reflects the company’s impressive growth, from a fledgling operation started by four friends in a barn eight years ago to a high-tech manufacturing firm with national appeal today. With the Corps contract, Nomad’s employee count has risen to around 70. And its revenue stream this year is two-and-a-half times greater than the previous year’s, Schmautz said. Next year could be even better.By emphasizing innovation, quality and dependability, Schmautz said Nomad has managed to rise above other companies in the Corps’ competitive bidding process.“We hope we continue to maintain our edge,” Schmautz said. “We work our tails off to ensure that.”Schmautz said the Corps is as thorough in researching and selecting its business partners as anyone he’s seen in eight years. Contracts are not thrown out freely. “As a taxpayer, these guys impress me,” Schmautz said. “There’s not a chance in the world they’re going to waste money. They do things right.”The emergency command and communication vehicles are 45-feet long, 13.5-feet tall and 15-feet wide when the slide-out features are engaged. Nomad has also built smaller vans for the Corps, which will be used for emergency response as well. Schmautz said the smaller units will be certified by the United States Air Force to be taken by airplane to overseas locations. Email Zach Emery tests the interlocks on a new Emergency Command and Communications Vehicle built by Nomad Global Communication Solutions for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. Stay Connected with the Daily Roundup. Sign up for our newsletter and get the best of the Beacon delivered every day to your inbox. The vehicles feature multi-banded radio interoperability, satellite technology, cellular connectivity for 3G and 4G networks, and various other elements that round out their ability to function as self-contained mobile command centers. They are equipped to travel to the site of any natural disaster and could also be used in other situations, such as terrorism, according to Schmautz.“They’re some of the most impressive units we’ve built,” Schmautz said. “I think they’re going to be some of the most capable, impressive units in the country.”After design plans are completed, each command center is in Nomad’s shop for 12 weeks. Schmautz estimates about 4,000 man hours go into each unit, not including the design process. Teams of engineers, fabricators, painters and detailers all play a role in crafting the specialized product.As Nomad grows, Schmautz increasingly finds himself in places like Mobile, Ala., Columbus, Ohio, and Washington D.C. In addition to the Corps contract, the company stays busy with other mobile command center projects for clients across the nation.“It’s a great feeling,” Schmautz said. “It’s a busy place – you can feel the hum in here.” Employees work on mobile command centers in the Nomad Global Communication Solutions facility near Columbia Falls. When the United States Army Corps of Engineers responds to a natural disaster, it sends in the most advanced communication technology available. To ensure the highest quality, the agency conducts rigorous research and an intensive contracting process.In other words, the Corps knows what it’s looking for, and seems to have found it in an unlikely place: right outside of Columbia Falls.Nomad Global Communication Solutions, a firm located on U.S. Highway 2 near Glacier Park International Airport, has delivered the first three of 12 emergency command and communication vehicles specially designed for the Corps’ Deployable Tactical Operations System. The first two vehicles went to Mobile, Ala., and the third left Nomad’s facility on Nov. 5, bound for Baltimore. last_img read more

Kalispell Attorney Recommended for Federal Judgeship

first_img Email Stay Connected with the Daily Roundup. Sign up for our newsletter and get the best of the Beacon delivered every day to your inbox. Kalispell attorney Dana Christensen has been recommended for consideration as a candidate to replace U.S. District Judge Donald Molloy of Missoula.The 59-year-old Christensen confirmed Friday he is under consideration but said he could not comment further, other than to say it is “a tremendous honor.”He is the lone recommendation from a five-attorney panel selected by U.S. Sen. Max Baucus, D-Mont. Christensen’s name has been forwarded to President Barack Obama, who will nominate a judge candidate for consideration by the full Senate.Molloy announced in December he would retire in August and begin senior status.Attorneys who have practiced law with Christensen, as well as Montana’s two other federal judges, say the experienced attorney is well-suited for a federal judgeship.“There is not a better prospect in this entire state,” said Richard Cebull of Billings, the chief U.S. judge for the District of Montana who was nominated by President George W. Bush in 2001. “He’s an outstanding lawyer. He’s been an outstanding trial lawyer in civil cases for over 30 years that I’ve known him.”Meanwhile, U.S. District Judge Sam Haddon of Great Falls said few attorneys can match Christensen’s resume, which includes membership in the American College of Trial Lawyers, an invitation-only group of trial attorneys whose membership is limited to 1 percent of the bar.“He’s a good lawyer, a good man and, in my opinion, ethically totally qualified,” Haddon said. “If he is confirmed by the Senate and becomes a justice of our court, the district will be well served to have him, and I personally would look forward to working with him.”Haddon also was nominated by President Bush in 2001.last_img read more