While your list of very good reasons that golf is not growing more popular is rather extensive, it failed to mention one additional, critical reason; the changing demographic make up of the United States.
Golf is historically tied to the oppression of blacks, minorities, women and the working class....it has earned its reputation as a rich, white, male, ostensably hetero, ruling class game....and despite the many PR spin initiatives, remains very much so.
The PGA Tour was one of the very last "sports" organizations to integrate....and looking at the players, it has made rather modest progress to this effect. Tiger Woods did more for the games image than any single player-before or since as minorities began to view golf as something that they might be able to participate in ......whatever thier actual experiences may turn out to be at their local clubs. (I have witnessed and heard many many horrific racist, classist, sexist accounts from golf clubs and country clubs)
Fact is that the games image and demographic trends parallel to that of the rapidly declining Republican Party which has long associated itself with the game. Both are corporatist entities primarily made up of white men over age 50 who either A. "Got theirs" and have no intention of pitching in to help less fortunate. B. Didnt get theirs and are angry at "those people" who keep them from doing so. C. All of the above.
A casual perusal of golf social websites such as this very one will demonstrate the beliefs , attitudes, values and behaviors of regressive austerity driven economic and social policies that are decidedly in the minority with the general public but hold great favor within the golfer's universe. In example, just go to the thread about Obama 's Golf weekend and read the virtually fact-free rightwing screeds and attacks against a President who was elected by a huge electoral vote count and is the first to win the popular vote in both elections since Ike.....you'd never know this by checking out the Golfchannel website, for instance, where this news led to a disgusting display of visciously racist posts.....
My own posts here on the Obama Golfing thread were apparently removed and they contained no such attacks but only support for the President and refutation of the litanny of Fox and Rush soundbites passing as facts against our president. 'Tis shameful indeed that our moderator apparently decided to engage in the cowardly act of removing my posts (without any notification to me) while leaving so much of the alternate fact-free world view that best represents the foundational problem haunting the game of golf: Let me try again to fill in some who may be interested in learning why the new majority just "arent that into golf":
We , generally, view the golf establishment as hostile to: Blacks, Latinos, women and other minorities who collectively now make up the MAJORITY of the American population. And just like the GOP, if you want to be successful with us you must change not only your packaging (spin) but your practices .
Personally, I love the game of golf and wish that more people from my background had the opportunity to experience its many delights....but I also fully understand the many obstacles to that happening - and frankly detest those individuals and institutions (Country Clubs, Corporate sponsors, PGA Tour fops, individual players at all levels, et. al.) still excluding the new majority of Americans.
If History serves to present patterns, then golf will once again bring up the rear in terms of reflecting America's new diverse face and as per usual lead the way as a symbol of intolerant resistance to change and social equality. A shameful past need not determine a shameful future should golf realize and acknowledge the new face of America.....For example, Latinos represent
the fastest growing demographic in America...every month approximately 50 thousand Latinos turn age 18....does anyone else see a "market" for golf there? Just sayin' ,amigo.