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 PolgarĀ©

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Uniting ALL chess players

Uniting ALL chess players!

t the Polgar Chess Center, we run tournaments for adults, kids and mixed. There is no animosity between the two groups. The adult players help the young members and they respect each other. We have adults' nights, kids' nights and open nights. That is how things should be. There is no reason why everyone cannot get along with each other and respect one another.

Unfortunately, for some reasons, there is a big rift between the Adult and Scholastic groups within the USCF. This started from the top with some board members playing politics and taking sides. This has gone on for way TOO LONG and not too many people are doing enough to help solve this problem.

This is one of my missions if I am elected to the USCF Executive Board with the right team. In fact, I plan not only to promote adult and scholastic chess but also college, military, correspondence and Internet chess as well. The Susan Polgar Foundation has also supported many of these groups in the past.

The USCF CANNOT survive if we keep on attacking and destroying each other. All chess groups are important and they all deserve our attention and recognition. Even though the young players (under 16) cannot vote, we must listen to what the parents, coaches and players have to say and find a way to make things work.

I worked with ALL chess groups in the past. I made things work. Why can't the USCF do the same? There should be no destructive and petty politics in chess. We also need to cut out the bureaucracy and we need to do what is right. It will work if we want it to work and I will make it work!

What is your take?
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  • At Wednesday, February 07, 2007 9:23:00 AM, Blogger sdo1 said…

    It would be nice if candidates that choose not to use the USCF Forums would not "cherry pick" topics, especially if the topics are misrepresented. No one is attacking anyone. One scholastic volunteer wanted something and has yet to articulate exactly what it is he wants.

    I have found that USCF members, particularly those who are active, co-operate beautifully with the varied aspects of chess activism. Your blog suggests other wise and I find that suggestion sad. Your opinion as stated discards the vast majority of chess enthusiasts who work together to promote and enjoy chess across the country.

    I would hope that the candidates for the EB would choose to discuss what they will do to further promote chess, in general and for scholastics, instead of dwelling in the negativity that does no one any good.

  • At Wednesday, February 07, 2007 9:28:00 AM, Blogger SusanPolgar said…

    sdo1, this has nothing to do with the USCF forum. I am talking about the general problems with the USCF.

    I attend more events in the US than any other chess player in this country. I clearly see the problem and some board members are making it worse.

    There IS a problem between the adult and scholastic chess community. Not only that, it got so bad that there have been intensive talks in the past few years to split.

    I agree that many USCF members contribute so much to chess. I am not talking about these people. I am talking about those in power that do not have the best interest of chess at heart.

    Best wishes,
    Susan Polgar

  • At Wednesday, February 07, 2007 11:00:00 AM, Blogger Jack Le Moine said…

    The New York Times is preparing a big story on the USCF and the elections. According to Joe Lux at the USCF forum, they have already interviewed him as well as Susan and others. I wonder what kind of positive/negative tone they will take.

    There is so much controversy right now. The subject of this post, kids vs. adults serves as one example.

    Last night I learned some important facts about the finances of the USCF. I share them with you below. They are included in a summary (my take) of things people have been discussing.

  • At Wednesday, February 07, 2007 11:05:00 AM, Blogger Jack Le Moine said…

    Okay, so reviewing all of this stuff, here's my summary of the important points.

    1) Cash basis vs. accrual basis seems to be a real hangup right now.

    2) The budget system does not mesh with the accounging system. People have been complaining about this for years but it was only this week that somebody in authority said we ought to do something about it. (I had not known this 24 hours ago.)

    3) Staffing levels limits the amount of man-hours and competance that we have to produce reports.

    4) The accounting system was badly designed. This also limits reporting capabilities. This includes choice of software, as well as not utilizing the capabilities of the software that we already have. No functional accounting, for example. No ability to toggle cash/accrual basis, for another.

    5) Much ado about Crossville HQ. While it appears to me that management has addressed the issue correctly, there is lots of disagreement on this.

    6) Audits and internal control reviews have already been done and paid for but this seems to be a black hole where I throw words in and they just disappear. In the future, the EB or a committee thereof ought to manage the audits more effectively - but I seem to be a minority of one in that point of view.

    7) If more internal control reviews are needed, then volunteers can do them. These reviews will be in non-financial areas. If such work is done, then a preliminary field trip to the Crossville HQ is needed to familiarize with USCF procedures. SM, the most likely volunteer and the one most likely to supervise such a project, strongly disagrees with the need for a preliminary survey.

    8) Much of the skepticism and criticism iothers have expressed about the accounting reports is based on management failures in the areas of points 2, 4 and 6 above. - my conclusion.

    9) The above does not address the junk criticism of SS and others which I dismiss out of hand.

  • At Thursday, February 08, 2007 8:05:00 AM, Blogger Jerry MacDonald said…

    Susan, do you support the idea of splitting the adults and kids?

  • At Thursday, February 08, 2007 8:17:00 AM, Blogger SusanPolgar said…

    At this moment, no. It would be the end of the USCF in this case. When Mr. SS was elected, countless scholastic people were ready to walk.

    I had to work very hard to talk to them to convince them to stay and give me a chance to fix things. That is the reason why I am running and that is also a reason why I put together a team that can change things in a positive way.

    However, if you leave things the way it is without changes with the old guards, I am afraid that the split will eventually take place.

    I am sure we can make things work but not with dirty politics or under the table dealings. The problem is much bigger than what most people realize.

    Best wishes,
    Susan Polgar

  • At Sunday, February 18, 2007 7:18:00 AM, Anonymous Tim Harris said…

    Dear Susan,

    I posted several questions regarding your stance on certain issues....all pertaining to your (hopeful) election to the USCF Executive board. I'm sure you've read my post. No hurry on answers as I know you're a very busy lady.

    Anyway, I read the following statement and it partially answered one of my questions regarding correspondence chess. You state:

    "...if I am elected to the USCF Executive Board with the right team. In fact, I plan not only to promote adult and scholastic chess but also college, military, correspondence and Internet chess as well. The Susan Polgar Foundation has also supported many of these groups in the past."

    Your active promotion of not only adult but scholatic, college, military (thank you for advocating this), correspondence and Internet chess all mean much to me.

    You have the experience, name recognition, and, above all, determination and love of our sport to bring good things to the USCF. After considering all candidates, you have my vote.

    I hope, when you have the time, you can briefly discuss how you can help bring new life to Correspondence Chess as it is directly related to military chess players. They are a wonderful group and I'm very happy that you remember them and post info regarding military chess tournaments.

    Thank you very much.


    Tim Harris

  • At Sunday, February 18, 2007 7:27:00 AM, Anonymous Tim Harris said…

    Dear Susan,

    I forgot to mention that you also state:

    "The USCF CANNOT survive if we keep on attacking and destroying each other. All chess groups are important and they all deserve our attention and recognition."

    I agree completely.

    So, am I correct in concluding that you DO NOT agree with the "Chess Life" editor's decision to cut Alex Dunne's "The Check is in the Mail" column from the pages of CHess Life magazine?

    This might seem a minor issue as compared to the other issues and, I agree, there are more pressing issues that must be attended to immediately upon your election.

    However, I would appreciate your stance.

    Thank you.

    Tim Harris

    P.S. Forgive me if I have repeated myself in certain areas of my posts. :)

  • At Sunday, February 25, 2007 9:27:00 AM, Blogger SBD said…

    This is a great sentiment. My observation is that there is a "scholastic lobby" in the USCF, but there is no corresponding "adult lobby." Perhaps if there were, the two sides would have to work together to meet common goals.

    I published a paper some years back that received a lot of attention in the non-chess world, none in the chess world that showed that the research suggested chess was a good Alzheimer's preventive, or could, at the least stall its effects. Seniors,who often have leisure time and money, are being ignored. Why the USCF isn't promoting chess in senior activity centers and other areas is a mystery to me; however, I think the resources of the USCF are stretched very thin, and they never have been able to meet the needs of the many volunteers who already want to support USCF but become burnt-out when they end up doing everything on their own.

    We expend resources in "making new players" at the youth level; why not at all levels? So many possibilities......


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