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©

Friday, June 01, 2007

The latest shocking USCF development

Countless parents approached me in the past few years about reducing the costs of the Susan Polgar National Invitational for Girls. Last year, a poll was taken about this matter. The choices were:

- Keep the tournament for 6 days
- Shorten it to 4 days (2 rounds on day 1, 2 rounds on day 2, 1 round on day 3 and 4)

Two separate polls were taken. The combine average of the 2 polls was:

- 79% of the parents favor the 4 day schedule to save 2 nights of hotels and meals
- 12% of the parents favor keeping it 6 days
- 9% cannot decide

A took a sample poll about moving the event to Texas Tech University where lodging and meals are taken care of the sponsor. Of the 18 parents who I discussed this with, 100% voted to accept the sponsorship from Texas Tech.

Another interesting note is my foundation, the Susan Polgar Foundation, and I, fully funded the annual $5,000+ in stipends and expenses since the inception of the event in 2004. We also sponsor the prizes for the side events.

In addition, I was present every single day of the event in the past 3 years without getting paid a penny. I do it because I want to help girls in chess. Because of this effort, thousands of young girls each year try very hard to qualify for this event. This is a motivation to keep girls in chess, something which the USCF asked me to do back in 2002/2003.

The USCF only provides the playing area and TD. A contract was signed with the USCF until at least 2009 and it was signed by the current USCF President Bill Goichberg. But because this is an election season, and because I refused to cave in to the political pressure by various chess politicians, here is a motion that was / will be presented by one of the current board members:

I have made the following motion:

Resolved the name of the Girls Tournament Held at the US Open is hereby changed to the "Irina Krush Tournament of Champions".

My reasons are as follows:

Susan Polgar states that she wants to hold the tournament in her name at Texas Tech University. At the same time, the USCF is unwilling to give up a successful tournament that we have developed over the last several years. Thus, it is inevitable that we will have to change the name of the tournament.

Accordingly, I am moving that we change the name to the Irina Krush Tournament of Champions.

My reasons are as follows:

Irina Krush is the highest rated ACTIVE woman player in the United States. In addition, she is rapidly improving. She has gained rating points in each of her last six tournaments, including her great result in the US Championship in Stillwater, Oklahoma last week. She is now rated 2497.

Irina is only 23 years old, which makes her much younger than most of her immediate rivals. It is unlikely that anybody will be able to catch her or pass her for at least the next several years.

Her name is easy to pronounce and remember. Frankly, most of the other top woman players have unpronounceable or unspellable names. At least, I cannot remember how to spell them and have to look them up every time.

She has a good name for chess. Imagine being Krushed by Bonecrusher Krush.

Irina has an attractive and charming personality. She is well liked by all who know her. She has never been involved in a dispute or a controversy of any kind. She has stayed clear of politics or of any sort of political involvement.

It does not hurt at all that Irina Krush is an astoundingly beautiful and attractive woman.

In short, Irina Krush is the perfect role model for our youth, for the type of person we want to bring into chess. A beautiful young girl is obviously a more attractive role model than a divorced, middle-aged woman.

As to the timing of this decision, I believe that now is the right time. If we wait it will be more controversial and politically contentious. I have considered waiting until the August meetings as Bill suggests, but that will be after the election and I believe it will have adverse political ramifications if done then.

Since Susan Polgar states that she no longer wishes to have a tournament in her name held in connection with the Annual US Open, and since the tournament in this format has been increasingly successful, we should simply change the name of the tournament.

Accordingly, I propose that we change the name of the tournament to Irina Krush Tournament of Champions and the name of the committee to the Krush Committee.

I hope that this motion can be passed quickly so that an announcement of the new name can appear in Chess Life magazine in the July issue before the tournament is held in Cherry Hill NJ in August.

USCF Board Member

This came up in spite of the fact that I have a legal contract until at least 2009 and that this tournament was created by me. This is in spite of the fact that I fought tooth and nail just to get this event off the ground over the objections from the chess politicians who do not want to support girl's chess. This is in spite of the fact that the USCF has no sponsor for the event this year or subsequent years without Texas Tech.

As I said many times before, if some of these people are willing to go out of their ways to legally threaten me, physically threaten my children and my family, and insult, demean, attack and lie about me just about every single day in the past 5 months, what would they do to others who do not have a voice?

This reminds me of the time when I was told by the chess authority that I cannot compete in the Men's World Championship because I am a woman or when they just decided to give every woman 100 points except me just to make sure I would not be #1 in the world.

They do not want me to stand up and fight back for the rights of all the players and trying to make chess and this federation better. There was even a post on my blog yesterday that I belong in the kitchen and not running for the Executive Board of the USCF. For my own good, drop out.

This is the kind of things that chess has to deal with for decades. There is no new ideas. It has been the same process of failed ideas being recycled year after year. This is the same group of people who blew off 3 potential sponsors with at least a million dollar deal each in the past 5-6 months alone! But they do not want professionalism and improvement.

By wanting to save the parents of the Polgar girls $50,000 of expenses per year in addition to getting at least 1 full college scholarship of around $30,000 and potentially many more each year, this motion came up. This is the state of the USCF.

Instead of doing the right things to help chess and the USCF, they chase away one member, volunteer, supporter and sponsor after another.

I cannot change this unless I have the power to do so. There are 7 board members and unless there is a majority of professional, experienced and sensible people, nothing can be done. That is why I made my recommendation of 3 others: Dr. M. Korenman, Paul Truong and Randy Bauer. These are the people who are most qualified and are able to help fix the USCF.

If you want the same vicious and malicious politics to continue then please vote for the others. I do not want to be a part of this destruction. I want changes. I want to reform chess and make the USCF a much more professional, viable and respected organization.

I am very sad about the state of the USCF. I hope that I will have a chance to fix things for the better.

Thank you!
Susan Polgar

I was asked what is the problem with this.

a) I have a legal contract and the board is violating it. Even discussing it is unethical and harmful to the event.
b) This is an event that I founded, funded and built from the ground up. This is an event that many USCF chess politicians fought hard not to allow and they said would doom anyway. They could not do a thing to help girls in chess. I did and they want to destroy it.
c) Irina is great! I hope one day she would be more active than me in promoting chess. However, these people are not interest in Irina. They are trying to divide, cause conflict and this harms our sport. They tried the same trick with the 2004 US Women's Olympiad Team. I have no doubt that Irina was not even asked about this.
d) USCF board members should put the best interest of the USCF and chess first. This shows you why the USCF is the way it is now. Destructive politics have always overshadowed the progess of chess in this country.

There are more but these are just some of the problems. As I stated, if you want this to continue, vote for them. If you want this destruction once in forever, Dr. M. Korenman, P. Truong, R. Bauer and I will work very hard to change many things for the better for US Chess and the USCF. But all four of us need to be elected to have a majority to stop the destruction.
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  • At Friday, June 01, 2007 1:12:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    I believe the situation at the USCF is much worse than you realize.

    The only possibility is to win this election.

  • At Friday, June 01, 2007 1:51:00 AM, Blogger KosmicEggburst said…

    Krush?? ..of the US Anti-Chess Federation(USACF)??

    If this is true, it is absurd in the extreme.

    Are they referring to female mud wrestling here, or chess?

  • At Friday, June 01, 2007 2:19:00 AM, Blogger gurdonark said…

    If the day comes that you wish to have a modest prize fund for a smaller girls tournament in the Dallas area, I would be happy to donate some hundreds of dollars towards that endeavor.

  • At Friday, June 01, 2007 4:11:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    No comment.

  • At Friday, June 01, 2007 4:20:00 AM, Anonymous Jonathan O'Connor, Ireland said…

    Being an Irish chess player, I very rarely follow the USCF links, but Susan, I can see why you are so angry. Best of luck in the election. And as an old boss of mine used to say: "F*** the begrudgers!" (We swear a lot more in Ireland :-)

  • At Friday, June 01, 2007 5:32:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…


  • At Friday, June 01, 2007 7:30:00 AM, Blogger rd said…

    It goes beyond outrageous. I see it as a last gasp attempt to grab and jab at what they can before they go down.

    So, in a strange way, I'm going to look at this as a sign that there is a big change on the way.

    Hey, has anyone received their ballots yet? Maybe I should be posting anonymously...Rich

  • At Friday, June 01, 2007 7:32:00 AM, Blogger Matt Helfst said…

    It seems the battle lines have been drawn. It is truly UNTHINKABLE what they have done to you Susan.

    I sincerely hope that you and your team will win the election and be able to provide the USCF with a bright future.

    Thank you Susan for all you do in chess!

  • At Friday, June 01, 2007 7:58:00 AM, Blogger Jerry MacDonald said…

    It'll all be over soon.

  • At Friday, June 01, 2007 7:59:00 AM, Blogger Dan said…

    I am horrified.

  • At Friday, June 01, 2007 8:57:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    None of the board members or opposing candidates spoke out agains this. They're all hiding behind this lunatic to win the election.

    The same people who endorsed this lunatic are now endorsing Stephen Jones and Joe Lux. Think about it.

  • At Friday, June 01, 2007 9:42:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    This is sick.

  • At Friday, June 01, 2007 9:44:00 AM, Blogger Kent said…

    It's sad that this is not tremendously shocking news. Politics is politics, be it USCF, FIDE, US government, etc. It's not about reason, it's not about making sense, it's about posturing, pandering, and plundering to line your own pockets.

    I wish you the best in trying to change things, Susan, but I also have little expectation that it can happen. Systems that are so broken can seldom be fixed, they must be replaced in whole.

  • At Friday, June 01, 2007 10:53:00 AM, Blogger Anthony said…

    I doubt this will even get to the proposal stage at a formal meeting of the board. More than a genuine threat, this is just Sam Sloan showing what a loose cannon he is. It's more pathetic than threatening.

    Of course, the fact that a faction of of USCF politicians backed a paranoid narcissist like Sloan for the board in the first place shows clearly the desperate need for a housecleaning there.

    Look at it this way Susan, whenever Sam unloads another one of his ravings on the USCF boards and the old boy network chimes in, it garners you more botes.

  • At Friday, June 01, 2007 11:18:00 AM, Anonymous artichoke said…

    Sam is not proposing to cancel the tournament. He's proposing to have two of them: the new tournament, plus your tournament. More tournaments not less!

    I don't think they should name it after Krush or any other player unless that player is also sponsoring it though.

    You say you have a contract for several more years. Does that contract say that it's to be held together with the Denker and/or the US Open? If so, moving it would break or require a change in the contract.


  • At Friday, June 01, 2007 11:22:00 AM, Blogger SusanPolgar said…

    No, it does not. The contract basically allows me to do as I wish since this is an event that I founded, funded and ran from the beginning. The role of the USCF is to sanction it and promote it. Anything outside of this is a clear violation of the legal agreement.

    Best wishes,
    Susan Polgar

  • At Friday, June 01, 2007 11:24:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Anyone who defends Sam Sloan is worse than he is. Give it up David. For once, stand up for what is right.

  • At Friday, June 01, 2007 12:00:00 PM, Blogger NYtrigal said…

    I know we're accustomed to David always defending Sam, but I don't think his question has anything to do with defending Sam. I think he asked a valid question regarding the terms of the contract. I too was curious as to whether the contract said anything about it where it was to be held. Thank you Susan for answering the question.

  • At Friday, June 01, 2007 1:40:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Go back to where you came from. Leave this board and the USCF alone. We don't need a Hungarian running the show.

  • At Friday, June 01, 2007 2:22:00 PM, Blogger Henry said…

    I wonder if Mr. Sloan had even bothered asking Ms. Krush her permission to use her name before he made his suggestion? I have read nothing to indicate that he did, but I hope I'm incorrect.


  • At Friday, June 01, 2007 2:53:00 PM, Anonymous gabor said…

    Anonymous said...

    Go back to where you came from.

    No, she won't, and there is nothing you can do about that.

    No, she shouldn't, because here she does more for chess than you do (without a name we don't even know whether you can play chess at all)

    Leave this board and the USCF alone.

    This is her board (blog). And whoever you are, USCF is not "yours".

    We don't need a Hungarian running the show.

    From that tiny country many excellent chess players came out, including the Polgar sisters, Leko and others. So, in a chess related issue to put down hungarians, just because they are hungarians, is a rather silly approach.

    Besides, who is the "we"?

    It is however interesting (and potentially eye-opening) that you would call the activity of USCF a "show". Maybe it is and GM Polgar may turn it into professional activity, instead of a show.

    Gabor (yep, another evil hungarian....darn....)


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