( I thinks we should open a bogey golfer, HI from 16 - 22, only thread to share common ideas, and experiences. No disrespect to low cappers in this forum but sometimes I think they don't understand our flight. Either they started golf early in their life and were taught good fundamentals or forgot what it was like for them to be a bogey golfer. )
You make a point. A 24 is playing little bit different game than a 14 who is playing a little different game than a 4. When I changed strategy and focused more on protecting bogie instead of getting par - my scores got better. I'd imagine a low cap might gasp at the thought of playing for a bogie.
Given that I understand you both may be the exceptions, please understand what I'm saying: you're either the exceptions, you're not understanding what is being said, or you're wrong.
This stuff matters - the long game matters - as much to a higher handicapper as anyone else. It matters as much to a 24 as to a 14 as to a 4 as to a guy with 14 majors.
I think a lot of you higher handicappers - and I've played with a LOT of them with this kind of topic in mind the whole time - anyway, it seems to me that some of you are misleading yourselves. For example, a guy I played with had 31 putts. He hit six GIR. He didn't hit any horrendous shots - just a few slightly heavy or thin, or misses left and right. On the last hole he had an eight-footer for par, which he made, and he said "where has THAT been all day?" I asked him about that, and he bemoaned his short game and putting let him down all day.
We went through his round, and yes, he often chipped and pitched to about ten feet. He three-putted once on a GIR (from 50 feet) and his average first putt distance on his other GIRs was over 35 feet. He put tremendous pressure on his short game, and it let him down. You could have put a scratch player in the spots he hit his ball to around the greens and the scratch golfer would have improved his score by about five shots. That was it. He kept putting himself in bad spots, and that's on his long game. He never took a penalty, but he shot 89. If he had his best short game day AND made 10% more putts than a PGA Tour player makes from the ranges he left himself, he still wouldn't have broken 80.
So no, I disagree that you need another thread (I think you've already started one, but it likely won't be to your benefit). I think you should trust that the stats being discussed apply to your level as much as mine or Tiger's.
I think a lot of you remember the missed eight-footer because you're closer to the hole. You don't remember that your tee shot left you trying to hit a 4-iron in, instead of a 7-iron, and that you caught your 4I a tad heavy and had to pitch from a steep upslope in front of the green. Those two shots penalized you far more than your pitch and putt.
As I've said before: if you have three days and need to shoot a lower score, practice your short game. But that's only going to improve your score so much. The only way to lower your score long-term and in big chunks is to improve your full swing game.