US Chess Discussion

Welcome! This blog has no connection with the USCF. It's a blog where I provide chess fans with general information about US Chess as well as the USCF. It's also a site where everyone can productively discuss or ask questions about various USCF issues! Your contributions and comments are welcome! PLEASE KEEP IT CIVIL & RESPECT OTHERS! Enjoy! All posts that do not meet this guideline will be deleted -- WIN WITH GRACE, LOSE WITH DIGNITY!(TM) --- 2006 Susan Polgar©

Monday, January 15, 2007

A plea to my fellow USCF members

Dear USCF members,

I have asked the Executive Board several times recently to help fix the serious problems in this forum. I understand that they are working as hard as they can and I appreciate their efforts. I wish it could be done much sooner. This becomes a serious legal issue when a board member is throwing out outrageous fabricated charges and threatening to file false police reports. This is no longer dirty or destructive politics. This is now involving people’s personal lives.

I am a professional player with an impeccable record on and off the board for 30+ years. In the last 5 years, I have given 150% of myself to help promote chess in the United States in a professional and dignified way. You may or may not like what I have done. I may have made some mistakes along the way. I apologize if I offended anyone. No one is perfect but the bottom line is I tried my hardest because I love my sport and I want to help my sport. It is especially not easy for me having to raise 2 young boys being a single Mom for the last 5+ years.

I am not interested in the dirty or destructive chess politics. I do not want to get back or get even with anyone. The long standing feud between various people contributed to the decline of this federation. I just want to help the USCF and I feel I can achieve that best by running for the Executive Board. I tried to define some of the biggest weaknesses within this federation and came up with the short list of people which I feel can help strengthen these areas. Then I asked them to come forward to help by running in this election as well. In the next few months, I will go into further details about how I think these goals can be achieved.

At that time, if you feel that the candidates that I recommend can do a good job then please vote for these people. If you feel that other candidates can do a better job then please vote for them. If you are unsure then you can debate and discuss the pros and cons about each candidate. Each of the 10 candidates feels that he/she can do the best job. It is up to you to make that decision. The election process should be fair and it does not have to be ugly or destructive.

So far I have sealed my lips and allowed some people to maliciously attack me, lie about me and smear my name. It was my decision not to fight back. I feel that it does not help this federation or anyone by going back and forth. There are too much animosity and hatred already. I would like to promote professionalism, unity and cooperation. Regardless of our differences, I am confident that we can work together for the good of US Chess and the USCF in a positive manner. I ask for you to please not give these destructive people more ammunition to misbehave. This has gone too far already.

Thank you for reading this and I hope to be able to communicate with all of you sometimes in the future.

Best wishes,
Susan Polgar
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  • At Monday, January 15, 2007 1:29:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Big night tonight on the USCF Forums. As promised, I posted a thread called, “The Case Against Susan Polgar”. It, along with three others, got closed down.

    Here’s a couple of big surprises. In a place where a fair and balanced look could be made at all that’s wrong with Susan, nobody wanted to take their shot. Yes, that’s right: nobody! Was it me? I guess everybody knows of me by now. As I stated from the beginning I support her. But I’m also fair. That means that in order to get by me, attacks have to be truthful, substantive, and supported. I just guess everybody just decided that this was too daunting a task, not even worth trying.

    People posted about all kinds of things on this thread. There was some 25 different comments. Sam Sloan even made his appearance. But no anti-Polgar - even from him.

    I posted a couple of comments about Susan’s vulnerabilities as a public person and a political candidate. They weren’t very bad because there isn’t much bad there that I can see but as I said above, everybody’s human and if you look hard enough you will always find something.

    The only response I got that was anywhere on topic was a pro-Polgar post that MY criticism was too unfair! That was it!!

    So this is the lesson I take from this outing. If you provide a forum where people must be respectful and professional AND you make it clear that you will challenge anybody who is not, people will react. I learned how to deal with bullies when I was a child.

    NOW . . .

    I propose to do one more thing before I put a period to this and move on. One of the big criticisms of Susan is that she only allows pro-Polgar comments on her blog. I don’t think that’s really true. (Kinda, sorta, but not really.) So let’s see.

    Following this post is my most anti-Susan comment. I think that it is respectful, fair, and balanced. It is my best effort to arrive at the truth as I know it. But it is critical of Susan. So, let’s see what happens . . . and then let’s put a period to all, definitively and conclusively and move on.

  • At Monday, January 15, 2007 1:34:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Is there anything solid? There actually are some things that seem to merit discussion.

    (a) The Women Olympics “Dream Team” and the US Women’s Champion shuffle does leave an odor. I can’t remember the name of the Champion who was maneuvered out of her title (I think it was Hahn or somebody) but any fair-minded person who is acquainted with only the facts as published has to go “yuck!”

    Still, at the worst Susan was acting for the greater good. No matter how much Susan’s detractors want to cover up the Fischer-Benko affair that enabled Bobby to get into the World Championship qualifiers, that still left a stench, too. There are other stories in history where good people did bad things for the greater good. How did Abraham Lincoln get the Republican nomination for President in 1860? It was pretty raw. I can think of many other examples.

    At the end, we should not be blind partisans for or against. We look at the good and at the bad that great people do. There was good that Susan did and there was bad. We weigh both in the balance. I think a fair-minded conclusion is that Susan played fast and loose in order to get the US it’s first win and thus give a push to women’s chess in America. Good and bad. We admire the one and scorn the other.

    (b) Has Truong behaved badly?

    Hal Bogner wrote,
    “You may also be surprised to know that many chess servers - including ICC, FICS and USCL - have had problems with Mr. Truong using Susan's accounts, and have also had direct problems with Mr. Truong, resulting in banning him from each of these servers at one time or another, I am told.

    ”This last item might explain why you see ICC-TD Duncan write "Good post, Hal" after my earlier post on this thread. I imagine that various experienced admins from these servers will publicly or privately confirm these things. I don't have any affidavits to offer, but if sued, I am sure I will be able to obtain them.”
    [end quote]

    Now this is pretty serious stuff. If we (including me) are going to raise a stink about Sam Sloan’s banning being an issue, it is only fair if we treat everyone else the same way. Two points are significant about this charge. Point 1 is that not only one but several different operators arrived at the same kind of conclusion about Paul Truong independently. Point 2 is the lack of attribution. This is the kind of charge which needs to be substantiated. Otherwise, we run into that credibility problem I mentioned above. So many attacks against him have been shot down, how are we to know that this isn’t just another one like all the rest?

    Deleting posts. Is Susan running her blogs in a one sided manner? Only one side’s views are allowed to be presented (hers) and all other’s are deleted. True or false?

    Now this I can speak to with some certitude. For the last month, I’ve been following her blog as closely as anybody. Yes, I’ve seen some posts that I wouldn’t have deleted. But I’ve seen posts antagonistic to her kept, too.

    But again, let’s put this in context. The fact is that nobody in the history of US Chess has ever been attacked as viciously as she has. Just yesterday, Sam Sloan posted a detailed allegation on this forum’s thread, “Response to Ethics Complaint by Herbert Rodney Vaughn” of a romantic affair with her. She has denied this in the past.

    Forget for a moment that she’s famous and just think of her as a woman. How hurt must she be? How much more horrible can things get? How much more of a price must we expect her to pay?

    From an objective point of view, I think that she’s become over sensitive to the attacks. But from a human point of view?

    I think we should cut her a little slack here. But from an objective point of view, she could improve in the area of deleting posts that express legitimate differences in issues.

    So, a fallible human being, greater than most of the rest of us, but still has room for improvement. My mother used to have a sign in her kitchen which said, “Please be patient, God is not finished with me yet.” I like that sign. It applies to even the greatest among us.

    This is not intended as a last word but rather as a starting point.* My quest as my other ones** were is a search for the truth. But can her detractors reply in the same spirit?

    My quest continues.*

    * Not any more. Those words were written in the expectation that somebody would come forward with something worth discussing. Since nobody did despite many people posting many things to that very thread, I think that we should drop it. Now it is a last word.

    ** My quests are listed in my statements under yesterday’s “More Contrasting Examples”.


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