‘People Are Going To Call Me A Hypocrite’ | PGA Merges With Saudi-Backed LIV To Form New Golf Entity Because ‘Everybody’s Got A Price’

In a shocking — but not so shocking if you think about it — turn of events, the PGA Tour has agreed to merge with Saudi-backed rival LIV Golf on Monday. The agreement to form a new golf enterprise going forward now puts an end to the ongoing contentious litigation between both parties, and it proves once again that everybody has a price.

Theodore DiBiase Sr. is a retired professional wrestler who goes by the stage name “The Million Dollar Man” Ted DiBiase. The line “everybody’s got a price” are the early words in his ring entrance music.

We all know this. Money makes the world go ’round, and there is a dollar amount that will make most people abandon whatever principles and beliefs they think they hold dear.

PGA Tour Singing A Different Tune

When LIV Golf began as a startup rival to the PGA Tour in 2021, with it’s inaugural season in 2022, PGA commissioner Jay Monahan was openly critical of LIV’s owners the Saudi Public Investment Fund (PIF).

“I think you’d have to be living under a rock to not know there are significant implications and as it relates to the families of 9/11—I have two families that are close to me that lost loved ones,” Monahan said in June 2022. “So, my heart goes out to them. And I would, ask any player that has left or any player that would ever consider leaving — have you ever had to apologize for being a member of the PGA Tour?”

Now look who’s taking “dirty” money from the Saudis and suddenly singing a different tune.

“I recognize that people are going to call me a hypocrite. Anytime I said anything, I said it with the information that I had at that moment, and I said it based on someone that’s trying to compete for the PGA Tour and our players,” Monahan said on Tuesday. “I accept those criticisms. But circumstances do change. I think that in looking at the big picture and looking at it this way, that’s what got us to this point.”

Reportedly, PGA Tour players that did not defect to LIV found out about the merger the same way the public did.

The PIF is the sovereign wealth fund of Saudi Arabia and is basically the personal piggy bank of the Saudi Crown Prince, Mohammed bin Salman, or MBS, as he’s known.

Saudi Arabia has a long and disgusting history of countless human rights violations domestically and abroad, including the murder of U.S.-based journalist Jamal Khashoggi. The $600 billion plus in assets under management in the sovereign wealth fund are in some part from a regime that commits illegal and heinous activities.

Saudis were also believed to have funded the 9/11 terrorists attack on the United States, though the Final Report of the National Commission on Terrorist Attacks “found no evidence that the Saudi government as an institution or senior Saudi officials individually funded Al Qaeda.”

Everybody’s Got A Price

Several PGA Tour players defected to LIV Golf, and while some cited the bogus reason of “growing the game,” Harold Varner III, who is sixth in the LIV Golf standings and won the DC event last month, straight up said it was all about the money.

“The opportunity to join LIV Golf is simply too good of a financial breakthrough for me to pass by,” Varner posted on his Instagram account last year. “I know what it means to grow up without much. This money is going to ensure that my kid and future Varners will have a solid base to start on – and a life I could have only dreamt about growing up. It’ll also help fund many of the programs I’m building with my Foundation. I’ll continue to forge pathways for kids interested in golf. This note is a receipt of for that.”

You can disagree vehemently with the idea of sportwashing and detest everything about MBS and the PIF, but everyone has their motivations and reasons for doing what they do. Some of them are even justifiable. But when we are talking about wealth beyond your wildest dreams, everyone’s got a price.

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