Tiger Woods: He Came, He Spoke, He Conquered

Finally, after months of keeping the world waiting, gossiping and peeking into the dirtiest secrets of his life, Tiger Woods made his dramatic confession of sex and sin Friday.
There was at this moment of expiation a grand manner about him — from the moment he parted the dark blue curtains and entered a small, crowded room to read a prepared statement to the moment he left 20 minutes later. In between, he admitted his sexual affairs, confirmed that he has been in therapy, and said he would return to golf but did not set a date.
Striding into the room where his mother (but not his wife) and some 35 friends, relatives and supporters faced him seated in rows of fold-out metal chairs, Woods had the bearing of a king, a wounded king perhaps, but royalty still. His face, drawn and pudgier than usual, had written on it the grim task ahead of him, his long-awaited contrition.
He aced it.

 

Permalink | Email this | Linking Blogs | Comments

Tiger Woods to Brit Hume: Buddha is Just Alright With Me

Filed under: , ,

Tiger Woods received both acclaim and criticism for his choreographed statement of remorse Friday, with the critiques centering on his refusal to allow any questions from the media.

But one thing that the world’s top golfer certainly cleared up was the question of his religious faith — and whether he would be taking the controversial advice of Fox News’ Brit Hume and converting to Christianity in order to become a better person.

“I recognize I have brought this on myself, and I know, above all, I am the one who needs to change,” Woods told the carefully screened audience of friends, family and reporters at his Florida announcement Friday morning. “I owe it to my family to become a better person. I owe it to those closest to me to become a better man. That’s where my focus will be. I have a lot of work to do, and I intend to dedicate myself to doing it,” he said.

He added:

“Part of following this path for me is Buddhism, which my mother taught me at a young age. People probably don’t realize it, but I was raised a Buddhist, and I actively practiced my faith from childhood until I drifted away from it in recent years. Buddhism teaches that a craving for things outside ourselves causes an unhappy and pointless search for security. It teaches me to stop following every impulse and to learn restraint. Obviously, I lost track of what I was taught.”

 

Permalink | Email this | Linking Blogs | Comments

Tiger Woods, Bloodied but Unbowed, Aces His Apology

Filed under:

Finally, after months of keeping the world waiting, gossiping and peeking into the dirtiest secrets of his life, Tiger Woods made his dramatic confession of sex and sin today.
There was at this moment of expiation a grand manner about him — from the moment he parted the dark blue curtains and entered a small, crowded room to read a prepared statement to the moment he left 20 minutes later. In between, he admitted his sexual affairs, confirmed that he has been in therapy, and said he would return to golf but did not set a date.
Striding into the room where his mother (but not his wife) and some 35 friends, relatives and supporters faced him seated in rows of fold-out metal chairs, Woods had the bearing of a king, a wounded king perhaps, but royalty still. His face, drawn and pudgier than usual, had written on it the grim task ahead of him, his long-awaited contrition. He aced it.
He came, he spoke, he conquered. He was properly somber, suitably low key, self-flagellating but unbowed. He didn’t miss a trick: he showed humility (though no groveling), anger, restraint, remorse.
He even brought out his Buddhist upbringing and pledged to find balance between his spiritual life and his professional career. It was a winning performance.Slowly, underlining every word, he said his behavior had been irresponsible. “I was unfaithful. I had affairs. I cheated. What I did was not acceptable and I am the only person to blame.”
And so, for 15 minutes, Woods repeatedly apologized to his wife, Elin, his two children, family, staff, sponsors and fans, calling his behavior selfish and embarrassing, foolish and reckless.
“I considered myself to be above normal rules,” he admitted. “I thought I could get away with anything…I felt I was entitled, thanks to money and fame. I was wrong.”
It’s a measure of such entitlement that he and his handlers orchestrated the scripted spectacle on Friday morning, hand-picking the guests, forbidding questions, procuring a room at the TPC Sawgrass Clubhouse in Ponte Vedra, Fla., diverting attention from a golf tournament being played this week in Arizona.

Woods and Co. chose the time, the place, the audience, and even the camera that videotaped his speech. Most of the media was relegated to a hotel nearby where they watched Woods on closed-circuit TV. But in a testament to Woods’s enduring stature in sports and popular culture, the networks and cable channels all showed his appearance live.

Woods, of course, played the good husband. He said “I’m sorry” or a variation of those words a dozen times. He praised Elin for her poise and grace throughout their ordeal, he made clear that they are talking but that no decision has been made about their marriage, and he repeated his refusal to reveal their private discussions.
At one point, raising his voice in anger, he said he wanted to set the record straight. First, he had not used performance-enhancing drugs and, second, Elin had not hit him with a golf club on the night of Nov. 27, 2009, when he wrecked his Cadillac Escalade S.U.V. in a neighbor’s yard, the accident that led to the explosion of revelations about his serial sexual affairs.
Toward the end of his statement, he said he was unsure when he would return to the golf tour but suggested it might be later this year and confirmed he had been undergoing in-patient therapy and would be returning to a clinic in Hattiesburg, Miss., on Saturday for further treatment and therapy.
Closing his statement, with the silence of the room bearing down, he said he hoped that someday “you will find room in your heart to believe in me again.” He stepped away from the microphone and embraced his mother for a long time. Cue: Tears.
 
 
 

 

Permalink | Email this | Linking Blogs | Comments

Another Poll Shows GOP’s Branstad with Big Lead Over Culver in Iowa

Filed under: , , ,

A new Research 2000 poll, conducted Feb. 15-17, confirms how much trouble Iowa Gov. Chet Culver is in, showing him way behind former GOP Gov. Terry Branstad and in a statistical tie with businessman Bob Vanderplaats.

Branstad is leading Culver 54 percent to 38 percent with 8 percent undecided. Branstad enjoys an 89 percent level of support among fellow Republicans compared to Culver’s 74 percent among Democrats. Independents break for Branstad by 60 percent to 32 percent with 8 percent undecided.

That’s about the same result as in a Des Moines Register poll conducted Jan. 31-Feb.3

 

Permalink | Email this | Linking Blogs | Comments

Melinda Henneberger on ‘The Diane Rehm Show’: Nuclear Plants, Bayh, Toyota Troubles

Filed under:

Politics Daily Editor in Chief Melinda Henneberger apeared on “The Diane Rehm Show” this morning to discuss the week’s top national news stories. Choose one of the audio options at this link to listen to the segment.

 

Permalink | Email this | Linking Blogs | Comments

Black Caucus Disputes Story on Corporate Ties, Fundraising Practices

Filed under: , , , , , , ,

Black lawmakers are raising a ruckus about a recent New York Times story questioning the Congressional Black Caucus’ ties to corporate interests — some of them accused of exploitative practices in African-American communities, Politico reports.

The caucus’ chairwoman, Rep. Barbara Lee (D-Calif.), said the article had unfairly linked the caucus and the Congressional Black Foundation, a separate entity that the Times called a “fund-raising juggernaut” for the caucus.

In a letter to the paper, Lee said it was a “disservice to the CBC” and other organizations named in the article to lump them together in a way that demeans each as well as their work. She asked the Times for an acknowledgment that the story was misleading and “well below ” journalistic standards. But she did not ask for a correction.

The Times story said the foundation’s corporate backers include Wal-Mart, General Motors, Coca-Cola, AT&T and Altria, the large tobacco company. Millions of dollars have been raised, some of which goes to charities, but a lot of it is spent on elaborate social events and conventions, the newspaper said.

The black caucus is comprised of 42 members of the House of Representatives — all Democrats.

 

Permalink | Email this | Linking Blogs | Comments

Tim Pawlenty Jokes Republicans Can Learn From Tiger Woods’ Wife

Filed under:

Minnesota’s Republican Gov. Tim Pawlenty spoke to the annual Conservative Political Action Conference in Washington on Friday morning. Pawlenty, a favorite of the conservative base and a likely presidential candidate in 2012, used the opportunity to criticize President Obama’s handling of the economy and national security and to articulate how Republicans could do better.

As he began his remarks, however, the usually demure Pawlenty joked about Tiger Woods’ predicament to make a point about the direction of the Republican Party.

“I think we can learn a lot from that situation, not from Tiger, but from his wife,” Pawlenty said. “She said, ‘I’ve had enough.’ She said, ‘No more.’ I think we should take a page out of her playbook and take a nine iron and smash the window out of big government. We’ve had enough.”

For the record, Woods issued a public apology in Florida moments after Pawlenty spoke in Washington. Woods talked at length about the people he had let down, and addressed the rumors that his wife attacked him with a golf club on Thanksgiving night, as Pawlenty said.

“Elin has never hit me, that night or any other night,” Woods said. “There has never been an episode of domestic violence in our marriage, ever. . . . Elin deserves praise, not blame.”

Democrats, always keen to attack any of the Republicans’ 2012 contenders, pounced on Pawlenty’s surprisingly off-color remark. Brad Woodhouse, communications director for the Democratic National Committee, said, “Tim Pawlenty today said that the country should take a nine iron to the government — but instead all he did today was take a nine iron to his own credibility.”

 

Permalink | Email this | Linking Blogs | Comments