Going back to the original question about how important your handicap is to you. I think that everyone plays the game of golf for different reasons. Some people play to better their handicap, some people play because they love the game. I play because to me its such a stress reliever. My work is very stressful and anytime I can go to the golf course and play relieves my stress. There is nothing that is more stress relieving than playing a round of golf by myself on a beautiful peaceful course. I am usually drinking when playing to. I enjoy getting better at the game, but my handicap means nothing to me, its all about enjoying the game and really relieving all the stress from life.
The tournaments I enter do not use my USGA handicap, it uses a handicap from the associations own summary of scores (I don't enter any scores, they do everything on their own). My USGA handicap I use for only my own reflection. I guess I never made that clear.
Go for it. But as it's fairly off topic here, please post in this thread:
If your proposal to improve 18-2 is to not allow marking/lifting/cleaning on the putting green… it doesn't really change 18-2 at all, because the ball can still move after being at rest, due to the player or other things.
This thread is to propose changes to rule 18-2. Everyone gets to have their own opinion, but I've yet to see one that has changed my mind. I'm against making the standard of proof "virtual certainty" (particularly when your ball is on pine straw, or in the rough, or countless other situations beyond the putting green), but I'd be amenable to some sort of threshold around 75%, not that I have the faintest idea how to word it or apply that relatively evenly.
That's incorrect. The weight of all evidence is considered and the most likely cause(s) identified. If the player was ten feet away and the wind didn't blow and the earth didn't shake or other things… the player would not be deemed at fault even without any "extenuating circumstance(s)."
Your proposal is based on a misunderstanding of the current rule.
DJ was deemed to have caused the ball to move, because of his actions very near to the ball in time and space. He caused his ball to move, the rules committee deemed.
It wasn't simply the lack of "extenuating circumstances" that doomed DJ. It was what he did right near the ball and right around the time the ball moved. The absence of those "extenuating circumstances" and the presence of his own actions are what caused the rules committee to feel he surpassed the 50% threshold.
The USGA and R&A apply this rule the same.
I suggest you re-read 18-2/0.5 again. Particularly:
@Gunther, 18-2 is not a case of "guilty unless proven innocent."
I believe @Fourputt was suggesting the rule go back to the way it was a decade ago or so.
I disagree with that (reverting to the older rule), @Fourputt. Yes, it was "cleaner" to apply, but it resulted in penalty strokes being assessed to players who did nothing wrong and did not, themselves, cause the ball to move. That's not worth the "cleanliness" IMO.
Sort of along these same lines for me. I'm not at 2.5 but in the past year I've passed under 5.4 and 4.4, both of which are threshholds for qualifying tournaments I've always wanted to play. As long as I can stay under those threshholds, and ideally keep going down (there is another qualifier available to me at 3.4, as well as at 2.4 and 1.4) then I'll be happy and keep entering those qualifiers. But if I don't, then well, it's not a huge deal either.