Bill O'Reilly

7 Conservatives Who Surprisingly Have Refused To Stand Behind Pam Geller

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TPM MUCKRAKER

For many on the right, this was a no brainer: pundits at Fox News and National Review, as well as blogs like RedState and Hot Air, defended Geller’s event and slammed liberals for supposedly blaming the victim. At best, she was a courageous free speech activist; at worst, a “provocateur.”

For her part, Geller has repeatedly called out “the Left” for caving in to “savages” on the issue of free speech.

But several high profile conservatives have made it clear they don’t think too much of her cartoon contest, either.

Here are seven of the more prominent — and surprising — examples:

Bill O’Reilly

Fox News may be giving Geller more airtime than any other cable news channel in the aftermath of the attack, but not every host considers her a free speech hero like Sean Hannity does.

“Two guys are dead,” O’Reilly said during his show on Monday while sparring with fellow Fox host Megyn Kelly. The host of “The O’Reilly Factor,” who has done his fair share of saber rattling against “radical Islam,” pushed back against Kelly’s defense of Geller.

“It’s always cause and effect,” O’Reilly said. “This is what happens when you light the fuse; you get violence.”

“You sound like you are defending, you are attacking the event itself,” Kelly said.

“No I’m not. I would do it another way,” O’Reilly said.

Bill Donahue

Geller may hold the distinction of being the only person to unite the one-man Catholic League, Bill Donahue, with any secular liberal, on any issue. But Monday night, he took to the airwaves on the Fox News show “Your World with Neil Cavuto” and condemned her cartoon contest unequivocally.

“When you embolden people, when you empower people, the haters, you’re going to get violence,” Donohue said. “And so why would anybody who’s morally responsibly want to intentionally incite other people?”

“We live in a sick society that some people think it’s good to taunt other people,” he added.

Donald Trump

The most straightforward condemnation of Geller came from reality TV star, real estate mogul and wannabe presidential candidate Donald Trump.

“Nobody would fight harder for free speech than me but why taunt, over and over again, in order to provoke possible death to audience,” he tweeted on Monday. “DUMB!”

He also complained about it on “Fox & Friends” and suggested Geller draw something else besides Muhammad.

Geller was asked about Trump’s remarks on Fox; she complained that the Donald “flaps his tongue” too much.

Martha MacCallum

Which brings us to Martha MacCallum, the Fox host who pressed Geller to answer her conservative critics on Tuesday. In response to Trump’s line about “taunting” Muslims, Geller ended up comparing herself to civil rights icon Rosa Parks.

MacCallum, who had been nodding along with Geller during earlier portions of the interview, wouldn’t have it.

“No, no, no, where are you getting the Rosa Parks comparison?” MacCallum said. She brought up Donohue and even the Pope, saying, “if you want to make a difference, you do it in a Christian way, you don’t do it in a crass way by insulting someone’s religion.”

By the end of the segment, MacCallum told Geller, “I get where you are coming from. I’m not sure you went about it the right way.”

Rev. Franklin Graham

Perhaps the most surprising contribution was the Rev. Franklin Graham, who called the cartoon contest “wrong.”

“As a Christian, I don’t like it when people mock my Lord and savior, Jesus Christ, and what this event in Garland, Texas, was doing was mocking the Muslims,” he said Wednesday during an interview on Fox. “And I disagree with Islam, I don’t believe in Islam, but I’m not going to mock them and make fun of them.”

Graham himself has scare-mongered about Muslim infiltration of the White House, and never hesitates to free-associate on, say, whether or not President Barack Obama’s mother was secretly a Muslim.

Greta Van Susteren

Of all the Fox hosts, Van Susteren came down on Geller the hardest, accusing her of luring police into danger by casting aside “good judgment.”

“Yes, of course, there is a First Amendment right and of course it’s very important. But the exercise of that right includes using good judgement,” Van Susteren said on Tuesday evening.

Van Susteren said that “everyone” knew the event would become violent, and that Geller went ahead and put police in jeopardy anyway.

“Was it fair to the police, to knowingly put them at risk by this unnecessary provocation?” she asked. “I say no.”

Laura Ingraham

“There are a lot of things that we can say, that we have a right to say, that we shouldn’t say,”Ingraham told O’Reilly on Tuesday night’s episode of the “The O’Reilly Factor.” “We shouldn’t unnecessarily insult people, personal attacks.”

“To do what was done at this convention,” she said, “it not only doesn’t accomplish anything, I think it could actually make things worse for us.”

Ingraham appeared to realize she was breaking with many on the right over Geller’s antics.

“And I know conservatives watching this across the country are like, ‘I can’t believe Ingraham is coddling the Islamists!’” she said. “No I’m not.”

~BRENDAN JAMES

Tavis Smiley shuts down Bill O’Reilly on police violence: ‘How many isolated incidents equal a pattern?’

Tavis Smiley (Fox News)

The Raw Story

Talk show host Tavis Smiley briefly threw Fox News host Bill O’Reilly for a loop with a pointed question on police violence.

The pair were engaged in a discussion Wednesday night on recent cases of police brutality, which O’Reilly shrugged off as isolated incidents that drew undue attention because they were captured on video, reported Mediaite.

“My question to you, Bill O’Reilly, is: How many isolated incidents equal a pattern?” Smiley said.

The bombastic O’Reilly was briefly silenced before admitting he couldn’t answer, and Smiley accused him of dodging the question.

“It’s an impossible question – I’m not dodging – it’s an impossible question to answer with any certainty,” O’Reilly said, comparing a statistic showing 135 black men shot by police in one recent year to the 1.2 million police officers in the U.S.

Smiley said he did not dispute O’Reilly’s statistics, but rather his interpretation of their meaning.

“When you try to tell black people every time one of these incidents happens and another precious young life is lost, that it’s just an isolated incident — that’s offensive, No. 1,” he said.

“But No. 2, as you said earlier, there are far more white people maimed by cops every day in this country than black people, and this is why this ought to be a concern for all Americans – not a color-coded issue,” Smiley continued. “We’ve got to respect and revel in the humanity of all citizens.

“And I have to stick up for the cops, because generally I think they’re doing a good job,” O’Reilly said.

Watch the entire segment posted online by Fox News

Bill Maher Torches ‘Blatant Bald-Assed Liar’ Bill O’Reilly (VIDEO)

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HBO Screen Cap

 TPM LiveWire

Maher called him a “blatant bald-assed liar. … These are out and out lies.”

Watch the video below, via HBO’s Real Time With Bill Maher.

Fox News stands by Bill O’Reilly

Bill O'Reilly is pictured. | Getty

Bill O’Reilly is pictured. | Getty

Politico

If Fox News host Bill O’Reilly has a “Brian Williams problem,” as his detractors hope, it may be one with a different outcome.

In a statement Sunday, a spokesperson for the cable channel said, “Fox News Chairman and C.E.O. Roger Ailes and all senior management are in full support of Bill O’Reilly,” according to The New York Times.

O’Reilly is contesting accusations that he has repeatedly exaggerated his war-reporting experience.

An article by Mother Jones last week claimed that O’Reilly has misled audiences with multiple accounts about his experience reporting for CBS News during the 1982 Falklands War between the United Kingdom and Argentina, and in El Salvador.

O’Reilly never set foot in a war zone like the one he described, the article by Mother Jones asserts, featuring quotes from his CBS contemporaries.

“Nobody got to the war zone during the Falklands war,” CBS News producer Susan Zirinsky told the magazine, adding that the military junta in Argentina prevented American reporters from getting to the islands.

“I never said I was on the Falkland Islands,” O’Reilly said on “The O’Reilly Factor” last Friday. “I said I covered the Falklands, which is what I did.”

“This is such a smear, it is unbelievable,” O’Reilly told Fox News’ Howard Kurtz on his “MediaBuzz” program Sunday.

But since Mother Jones published its article, others have come forward to criticize O’Reilly’s version of events.

Another former colleague pushed back on O’Reilly’s accounts late last week in a lengthy Facebook post.

Eric Engberg, a former CBS News correspondent who covered the aftermath of the Falklands conflict from Buenos Aires, said that O’Reilly’s story about covering a protest in the Argentine capital wasn’t accurate, adding that it was a “relatively tame riot” after Argentina surrendered to the British on the islands.

“It was an ‘expense account zone,’” Engberg wrote.

O’Reilly responded to the post on Sunday, reading from a contemporary New York Times dispatch that recounted police using tear gas to disperse “thousands of angry Argentines who had massed in front of the presidential palace.” Engberg said that the Fox News host’s story about his cameraman getting run down and “bleeding from the ear” could have only happened during that event.

“I don’t think he was there. I don’t think he knows what happened,” O’Reilly said of Engberg, adding that he had requested the video of the protest from CBS News.

CBS News confirmed to Deadline that it is in the process of locating video of the incident O’Reilly is referencing.

Bill O’Reilly Has His Own Brian Williams Problem

Mother Jones

The Fox News host has said he was in a “war zone” that apparently no American correspondent reached.

After NBC News suspended anchor Brian Williams for erroneously claiming that he was nearly shot down in a helicopter while covering the US invasion of Iraq in 2003, Fox News host Bill O’Reilly went on a tear. On his television show, the top-rated cable news anchor declared that the American press isn’t “half as responsible as the men who forged the nation.” He bemoaned the supposed culture of deception within the liberal media, and he proclaimed that the Williams controversy should prompt questioning of other “distortions” by left-leaning outlets. Yet for years, O’Reilly has recounted dramatic stories about his own war reporting that don’t withstand scrutiny—even claiming he acted heroically in a war zone that he apparently never set foot in.

O’Reilly has repeatedly told his audience that he was a war correspondent during the Falklands war and that he experienced combat during that 1982 conflict between England and Argentina. He has often invoked this experience to emphasize that he understands war as only someone who has witnessed it could. As he once put it, “I’ve been there. That’s really what separates me from most of these other bloviators. I bloviate, but I bloviate about stuff I’ve seen. They bloviate about stuff that they haven’t.”

Fox News and O’Reilly did not respond to multiple requests for comment.

Here are instances when O’Reilly touted his time as a war correspondent during the Falklands conflict:

  • In his 2001 book, The No Spin Zone: Confrontations With the Powerful and Famous in America, O’Reilly stated, “You know that I am not easily shocked. I’ve reported on the ground in active war zones from El Salvador to the Falklands.”
  • Conservative journalist Tucker Carlson, in a 2003 book, described how O’Reilly answered a question during a Washington panel discussion about media coverage of the Afghanistan war: “Rather than simply answer the question, O’Reilly began by trying to establish his own bona fides as a war correspondent. ‘I’ve covered wars, okay? I’ve been there. The Falklands, Northern Ireland, the Middle East. I’ve almost been killed three times, okay.'”
  • In a 2004 column about US soldiers fighting in Iraq, O’Reilly noted, “Having survived a combat situation in Argentina during the Falklands war, I know that life-and-death decisions are made in a flash.”
  • In 2008, he took a shot at journalist Bill Moyers, saying, “I missed Moyers in the war zones of [the] Falkland conflict in Argentina, the Middle East, and Northern Ireland. I looked for Bill, but I didn’t see him.”

Much more continued here…

O’Reilly: Black People Should Wear ‘Don’t Get Pregnant At 14′ T-Shirts

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Fox News Screen Shot

It bothers me a great deal that MLK III acquiesced to Bill O’Reilly’s insulting remarks…

TPM LiveWire

Guest Martin Luther King III told the host of “The O’Reilly Factor” that America needs to hear a unifying message amid recent racial turmoil. O’Reilly interjected with his suggestion for “a pathway to success” for black people.

“Don’t abandon your children. Don’t get pregnant at 14. Don’t allow your neighborhoods to deteriorate into free-fire zones. That’s what the African American community should have on their T-shirts,” he said.

“Am I wrong?” O’Reilly asked his guest.

King almost immediately segued to a different point. “Well, I think that’s a part of it, but that’s not the entirety,” he said, going on to say Americans need to address more than just police misconduct.

Watch the clip, via Media Matters:

Bill O’Reilly: St. Louis Rams who protested aren’t “smart enough to know what they’re doing”

Bill O'Reilly: St. Louis Rams who protested aren't "smart enough to know what they're doing"

(Credit: Fox News)

Salon

The clip is almost too infuriating to watch

Conservatives have a fraught relationship with the concept of stupidity. When Jonathan Gruber referenced the stupidity of the American people, conservative media blew a collective gasket. Meanwhile, pundits attribute any disagreement with Dems to the opposing party’s lack of education, or amazing ignorance. On Monday evening’s edition of “The O’Reilly Factor,” Bill O’Reilly criticized the St. Louis Rams for choosing to run on to the field on Sunday in the “Hands up, don’t shoot” position in honor of Michael Brown. It isn’t that the players are appalled by police brutality and the systematic criminalization of minorities, said O’Reilly. Rather, the host argues, they aren’t even smart enough to know what’s going on.

“Look, you’ve got crazy people on all sides, Bill,” said Juan Williams, arguing with the host’s opinion that anyone who assumes the “Hands up, don’t shoot” position thinks thatall police are hunting down all minorities. “But if you think that those football players identify and say, ‘Oh, all cops are bad?’ That is not true.”

“No,” O’Reilly responds with the utmost condescension. “Quite frankly, I don’t think they’re smart enough to know what they’re doing. I don’t. I absolutely don’t think they’re smart enough to know what they’re doing.”

Watch the full clip HERE, if only because it is particularly gratifying to see Mary Katherine Ham and Juan Williams totally disgusted with O’Reilly throughout the segment.

Stewart vs. O’Reilly Showdown: Intense Battle over White Privilege

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Mediaite

Jon Stewart and Bill O’Reilly got together again Wednesday night for an intense debate about white privilege that came very close to turning into a shouting match.

A few months ago, O’Reilly had dismissed the idea of “white privilege” as a fantasy, and Stewart challenged him on that, practically starting the interview saying “I want you to admit that there is such a thing as white privilege.”

O’Reilly stuck to his argument about Asians doing well, therefore maybe Asian privilege exists, but Stewart argued “white males set the system.” O’Reilly shot back it’s ridiculous because there’s “no more slavery, no more Jim Crow,” and the president is black. Stewart argued the residual effects still exist today.

Things got really heated and O’Reilly and Stewart were practically yelling at each other at one point. Stewart asked him at one point, “Why so defensive about it?”

Watch the face-off below (extended version), via Comedy Central:

Video embed updated to include FULL interview…

Dear Fox News: Please Stop Using Asian-Americans to Attack Black People

Youtube screenshot

The Daily Beast – Asawin Suebsaeng

Bill O’Reilly’s attempts to use the success of Asian-Americans to shame African-Americans is shameful and historically illiterate.

“Talking Points does not—does not—believe in white privilege.”

That was Fox News host Bill O’Reilly’s big, brave pitch during his third-person “talking points” segment on Tuesday’s edition of The O’Reilly Factor. The peg for the segment was the uproar and race issues surrounding the police shooting of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri, earlier this month. O’Reilly was blasting the idea of people citing “white privilege” to help explain anger or inequality in predominantly black community. He railed against a perceived failure of black leaders to spark a “cultural revolution” in their “precincts,” and the lack of personal responsibility instilled in young African-Americans.

Of course Bill O’Reilly doesn’t believe that the concept of white privilege exists. (Neither does much of the rest of Fox News.) He has denied the existence of such a privilege for white Americans in previous segments, including one in which he falsely claimed that Harvard Kennedy School was requiring freshmen to take a class on the subject.

O’Reilly’s latest salvo of white-privilege denialism has already been mocked and (rightly) criticized enough. But one aspect of his crotchety monologue that was particularly unappealing was how he invoked the general economic and academic successes Asian-Americans in order to highlight the supposed failings of African-Americans.

“So, do we have Asian privilege in America?” the Fox host asked rhetorically. “Because the truth is that Asian-American households earn far more money than anyone else.”

O’Reilly also compares the statistic on Asian-American children raised in single-parent households (13 percent) to that of African-Americans (a “whopping” 55 percent) to make the point that Asian families in this country are stronger. This is a favorite bugaboo of O’Reilly’s, and in the past he’s even said that First Lady Michelle Obama should come on his show and tell black teens, “You stop having sex; you stop getting pregnant.

O’Reilly has made the Asian-privilege pointbefore. He’s also praised Asian folks by asserting that, “Asian people are not liberal, you know, by nature” because “they’re usually more industrious and hard-working.” (It’s worth noting that not all Asian demographics fit neatly into this positive stereotype that colors the way O’Reilly talks about Asian citizens.)

First, let’s be consistent and call this phenomenon “yellow privilege.” So, sure, you could reasonably argue that there is a general yellow privilege that people who look like me enjoy in the United States. For instance, Asian-American men under the age of 35 have a far lower chance of being wrongly accosted by a police officer than a young black man would. The difference is that, unlike white people, we don’t have a bitter, well-payed armada of commentators to go on TV and complain about black people every time someone brings said privilege up.

But the real reason O’Reilly black-yellow comparison is so annoying and intellectually dishonest is because it is patently bizarre to compare the Asian-American experience to the African-American one. Such a crass talking point—one that uses the favorable stats of one minority group to attack the culture of another—overlooks, or at least glosses over, some of the most obvious facts and tragedies in our nation’s history. Generations of Asian-Americans did not endure the traumas, legacies, and residual effects of slavery, Jim Crow, and decades of racist housing policy. These are factors that O’Reilly mentions only as an aside, preferring to talk more about the importance of getting black kids to “speak properly” and behave themselves in public.

Asian-Americans and African-Americans have had very different experiences in America, a complicated reality that O’Reilly and many of his colleagues do not seem eager to tackle. But at least his commentary in the wake of the Michael Brown tragedy has been more refined than some of his co-workers—a thought that is less a compliment to Bill, and far more indicative of the kind of organism that Fox News has become.

Republicans Keep Adding To the Times Obama Shouldn’t Golf, So We Made a List

US President Obama waves from a golf cart in Kailua | No attribution listed

The Daily Banter

Uh oh. President Obama went golfing for a second time while on vacation since video surfaced on Tuesday of an American journalist being murdered in Syria. Naturally, conservatives haven’t been this angry since they were that angry over Obama golfing the first time he did it.

If it seems like criticizing Obama for going golfing is something conservatives do a lot, that’s because it is something conservative do a lot. The thing is, however, it’s not always clear when the President shouldn’t go golfing. The problem is that Republicans haven’t actually written down its ever-growing list of circumstances under which Obama should not go golfing.

In the interest of saving Obama from further golf-related criticism, and from hitting the sand more than an beach volleyball, I’ve made the following list:

2009

April 26: Fox News astutely observes that cameras aren’t being allowed to film Obama golfing during the swine flu scare, thereby suggesting the White House knows he shouldn’t be golfing.

Pro tip: No golfing during hyped-up viral outbreaks.

July 26: Obama plays golf for the tenth time in 10 weeks, earning him the nickname, “The First Duffer” among reporters too unimportant to get the nickname to stick.

Pro tip: No golfing 10 times in a 10 week span

2010

April 18: The Icelandic volcano eruption prevents Obama from traveling to Poland to attend the Polish President’s funeral, so, as the Washington Times notes, he plays golf instead.

Pro tip: No golfing during a foreign leader’s funeral after planning to attend, but not attending due to a huge continent-wide volcanic eruption.

June 20: Obama goes golfing while oil is still leaking into the Gulf of Mexico from BP’s exploded rig. RNC Chair Michael Steele demands Obama stop golfing until the leak stops, which apparently Obama could easily do by SCUBA diving down plugging it himself.

Pro tip: No golfing during oil spills.

2011

March 5: Obama goes golfing while the price of oil increases.

Pro tipNo golfing while the price of oil increases. To achieve this, carry a real-time, tick-by-tick oil chart out on the course and only golf when the price is decreasing. And by “oil,” I mean good old West Texas Intermediate crude; none of that sissy European Brent crude shit.

March 16: Obama goes golfing as the Fukushima nuclear plant in Japan continues to leak radioactive material.

Pro tip: No golfing during nuclear plant meltdowns anywhere in the world.

May 1: Obama plays nine holes and finishes several hours before the start of the Navy SEAL mission that would kill Osama bin Laden. However, on November 7, several conservative media outlets, including Town Hall, Newsmax, and the ever-accurateInfoWars, will erroneously report that Obama was golfing a mere 20 minutes before the raid. Later, this accusation will morph into a less enraging claim that Obama was playing cards near, but not in the situation room before the raid.

Pro tipNo golfing during the 24 hours leading up to a major special ops raid just in case conservatives get confused. In fact, the night before, randomly hold a nationally televised presidential address declaring a one-day presidential golfing moratorium so everyone knows you definitely weren’t golfing.

May 30: Fox notes that Obama goes golfing on Memorial Day after participating in ceremonies earlier because he should’ve done sad things for the entire of the day. It would’ve been more appropriate for Obama to do what Fox’s Bill O’Reilly did one Memorial Day: send a producer to interview scantily clad women at a beach.

Pro tip: No golfing on Memorial Day.

June 25: Then House Majority Whip Frank Underwood Kevin McCarthy says Obama should stop golfing while debt ceiling negotiations are ongoing.

Pro tip: No golfing when Republicans are threatening to let the country default if they don’t get what they want.

August 23: Obama goes golfing on vacation at Martha’s Vineyard as a 5.8 earthquake hits Washington, D.C. Or he was biking. There seems to be some uncertainty.

Pro tipBeat seismologists to the punch by gaining foreknowledge of earthquakes and do not golf during them.

November 15: Obama golfs with an old friend who was charged with soliciting a prostitute.

Pro tipNo golfing with people accused of soliciting prostitutes, unless it’s Republican David Vitter because bipartisanship.

December 7: Mitt Romney says, “It’s time to have a president whose idea of being ‘hands on’ doesn’t mean getting a better grip on the golf club.”

Pro tip: No golfing when your likely presidential opponent thinks you’re golfing too much because he’s definitely not saying it to score a soundbite.

2012

April 18: Mitt Romney tells Obama to stop golfing so much.

Pro tip: Ibid.

June 14: In an amazing arithmetical breakthrough, the Washington Times reports,

The next time President Obama hits the links, it will be his 100th round of golf since coming to the White House. That’s quite a milestone in just 3 1/2 years.As it takes him about six hours to drive to the greens and complete 18 holes, Mr. Obama has spent the equivalent of four months’ worth of work time golfing.

At six hours apiece, 100 rounds means a total of 600 hours spent playing golf. Divided by 24 hours, that’s 25 days-worth of golf. But the Times is talking about “work time” because that’s obviously a clearly defined unit of measurement. Also, the presidency is sort of just like a 9-5 job. Also, surely no one ever plays just nine holes of golf, which would halve the time it takes. So therefore, four months “work time.”

Pro tip: No golfing in such a way that leaves you vulnerable to conservatives’ impregnable Jedi math.

July 19: “Obama spends more time on golf than economy.”

Pro tip: No golfing when you’re not spending more time on the economy.

July 23: Obama plays golf “instead of visiting Israel.”

Pro tip: No golfing while you’re not visiting Israel.

2013

February 19: Obama goes golfing with Tiger Woods as negotiations in Congress are ongoing about how to stave off automatic budget cuts.

Pro tip: No golfing with Tiger Woods.

March 6: Texas Rep. Louie Gohmert introduces an amendment to prevent Obama from golfing after the White House briefly stops giving tours as budget negotiations continue.

Pro tip: No golfing when the White House isn’t giving tours. And no golfing when a very serious person like Gohmert says no golfing.

August 31: Obama goes golfing after announcing the U.S. should conduct military strikes against Bashar al-Assad’s regime in Syria. In a double whammy for Republicans, Obama ends up not ordering the strikes.

Pro tip: No golfing after getting Republicans all hot and bothered with dirty-talk about airstrikes only to have it end up being one big tease.

2014

April 23: Obama goes golfing instead of attending the funeral of his aunt in South Boston.

Pro tipNo golfing during the funeral of relatives in South Boston you may not have seen in many years or ever. Or if you must, go to the funeral and then hit the TPC Boston in Norton.

August 7: No one criticizes Obama for golfing on this day, but incredibly, “The First Duffer” nickname reemerges five years later in a 2,700-word feature on Obama’s golf game inPolitico. The strange conclusion is that Obama goes golfing to temporarily escape from his failed presidency.

Pro tipThis feature piece implies that Obama is increasingly retreating into golf to getaway from the stress that comes with having a failed presidency. Thus, Obama should’ve gone golfing a lot more during the earlier years of his presidency, so it would look like he’s doing less golfing and more presidenting than he was previously.

Like this guy, who quit golf altogether in 2003: