Mickelson admits to 'insensitivity' on tax issue


Three days after creating a firestorm with his public airing of his tax grievances, Phil Mickelson apologised for being, well, himself.

“You know,” he said when asked what the past few days had been like, “I’ve made some dumb, dumb mistakes, and obviously, talking about this stuff was one of them.”

After his final round last Sunday at the Humana Challenge, Mickelson said: “There are going to be some drastic changes for me because I happen to be in that zone that has been targeted both federally and by the state.”

Post-election frustration

On Wednesday, Mickelson, speaking on the eve of the Farmers Insurance Open, likened the airing of his post-election frustrations to the intemperance he displayed on the 18th hole at Winged Foot Golf Club during the final round of the 2006 US Open.

Ahead by one as he walked to the tee box, Mickelson hit a drive that crashed off a hospitality tent far left of the fairway. He compounded his error by trying to cut a shot around a tree instead of hitting back on to the fairway. The ball ricocheted off the trunk, costing him a double-bogey six that handed victory to Geoff Ogilvy.

“I hit a drive way left off the tents,” Mickelson joked. “So this happened to be way right, but way off the tents.”

He added: “Like Winged Foot, where I tried to carve a three-iron around a tree and get it up by the green, I make double bogey and lost the US Open, I think I’m going to learn my lesson and take a wedge and get it back in play.”

But Mickelson, who has more than $67 million in career earnings, digressed.

“I think that it was insensitive to talk about it publicly to those people who are not able to find a job, that are struggling pay cheque to pay cheque,” he said. He added, “My apology is for talking about it publicly because I shouldn’t take advantage of the forum that I have as a professional golfer to try to ignite change over these issues.”

It was suggested that with his high profile, he is the ideal agent of change. “Possibly,” Mickelson said after a long pause. “I don’t think that its necessarily me.” – New York Times

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