From: Larry Parr <75227.3...@CompuServe.COM>
Subject: Fists Up, Pants Down!
††††††††††††††††††††††††††† A Dysfunctional Board
A reader asked me to repost details of an hilarious episode during a previous
meeting reported in the USCF Delegates Newsletter, an independent publication
of the Friends of the USCF, Volume 3, Number 1, June 1994. Chairman: GM Larry
Evans. Newsletter Editors: Larry Parr, Nigel Eddis.
Back copies have become something of a collector's item but some are still
available. Send inquiries to treasurer Nigel Eddis, 825 West End Avenue, New
York City 10025. Small donations are also welcome.
††††††††††††† Text of USCF Policy Board motion on Jerry Hanken:
†††††††††††"Due to behavior totally unacceptable as a Policy Board
†††††††††††††member, Jerry Hanken is hereby reprimanded for such
†††††††††††††††††††††††††††behavior." Passed 6-0-1.
††††††††††††††††††††††††††† FISTS UP, PANTS DOWN!
†††††††††††††††††††††††† YOUR USCF DUES $$'s AT WORK
New Windsor, NY., May 21 -- "Now I finally know what the Policy Board does
during closed sessions," said one visitor today just as the door to the
meeting room flung open at about 10:20 a.m.
The visitor saw Member at Large Jerry Hanken with his left fist raised and
right hand cocked. "I'm going to kill him! I'm going to kill him!" Mr. Hanken
screamed while appearing to move toward USCF President Denis Barry. Meanwhile
Vice President Fred Gruenberg, like a referee in a boxing match, struggled to
restrain Mr. Hanken -- WHOSE PANTS THEREUPON FELL DOWN!
Executive Director Al Lawrence quickly drew the blinds of the office window
and closed the door. The PB briefly continued its "meeting."
The Delegates Newsletter has learned that Mr. Hanken's outburst came after a
PB decision to deny Randall Hough, ex-USCF secretary and close Hanken ally, a
Distinguished Service Award.
States one PB member, "Jerry and Fred began to argue about Randy, while Jerry
accused Fred of disliking his buddy. Denis decided to call the meeting to
order by first using his gavel and then his voice."
"You think that you can yell louder than I can?" Mr. Hanken roared in
response. "Well, I'll show you who can yell loudest!"
Later, while Mr. Hanken remained in the now-darkened office to regain his
composure, American Chess Foundation President Fanueil Adams told President
Barry, "Congratulations, stand up to that guy!" Mr. Adams told Mr. Gruenberg,
"You should have let him [Hanken] hit him [Barry], and then he'd go to jail."
Responded Mr. Gruenberg, "Yeah, you're right. But I took one look at Jerry's
size and Denis' and had to step in."
Mr. Adams said, "You're right. He's a big one."
An excited Mr. Gruenberg continued, "He was going to hurt him. You know that.
He's big and strong. I had to stop it." And then Mr. Gruenberg said to Mr.
Hanken, who had finally reappeared, "You were going to attack him."
Replied Mr. Hanken, "No, I was going to hit YOU."
††††††††††††††††††††††††††† Mad Dog Or Old Yeller!
As the PB reassembled for open session, Member at Large Bill Snead spoke
first. "Jerry," he said, "we're not yet in session. As a courtesy to us, I
wish you would resign from this Board. Just as a courtesy, you understand."
Mr. Snead, who along with Mr. Gruenberg had earlier threatened to resign,
said, "The issue is whether we will enforce minimal acceptable standards of
civil conduct. What we saw here today meets no standard, let alone a minimal
USCF Secretary Rachel Lieberman said, "In my opinion, Denis was only trying to
call the meeting to order and was simply doing his job as chairman."
Mr. Gruenberg reiterated his earlier statements. "There is no question in my
mind," he said, "that he would have hit Denis."
Treasurer Frank Camaratta, who in no sense defended Mr. Hanken's conduct,
argued that Mr. Gruenberg overreacted and mistook Old Yeller for a mad dog.
"I've seen him yell like this before," Mr. Camaratta said, "and I'm sure he
never intended to hit Denis."
"I was never out of control," said Mr. Hanken. "I felt physically attacked by
you [Gruenberg]. It changed from a yelling contest that I started to a
physical thing between you and me. I don't know how it happened. I love you,
Fred. You know that."
Mr. Gruenberg stated, "Jerry, I pushed you back because I had to."
In a tear-choked voice, Mr. Hanken replied, "And that's when my pants fell
"At last," said the out of town visitor at the PB meeting, "I got to see our
USCF dues dollars at work. But I'm confused. Did the Board reprimand Mr.
Hanken for threatening to kill President Barry, or for losing his pants?"
†††††††††††††††††††††††††† EDITORIAL: FUNNY PANTS?
††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† By Larry Parr
"The democrats of IL MONDO want to know our program," said Benito Mussolini.
"It is to break the bones of the democrats of IL MONDO. And the sooner the
There were no bones broken during the Policy Board meeting from May 20 to 22
 though there might easily have been. President Barry, who broke his
back four years ago, could have been crippled for life if he had suffered a
second accident; Fred Gruenberg, who later complained of a bad headache, was
in the pre-stroke stage of a cold sweat; and Jerry Hanken, whose trousers were
at half-mast, could have toppled forward in a fall that might have been fatal
for someone of his age and size.
So while the national chess community is laughing over Mr. Hanken's
embarrassment, and while one prominent East Coast organizer is saying that Mr.
Hanken's next political slogan should be "Fists up, Pants down!" we at the
Friends of the USCF do not regard it all as good dirty fun.
Bill Snead wondered what will now be considered acceptable and unacceptable.
We have a simple answer: What is acceptable is that which is accepted.
The Delegates have accepted two FIDE title matches in which the family of one
of the participants was held hostage in the Soviet Union; the Delegates have
accepted Don Schultz's support for FIDE declaring a journalist persona non
grata; the Delegates have accepted Florencio Campomanes placing his mistress
on FIDE's payroll and publicly humiliating his wife; the Delegates have
accepted President Campomanes' threats to kill several journalists; the
Delegates have accepted President Campomanes placing FIDE funds (including
cash from the USCF) in a private account in his personal name; the Delegates
have accepted the beating of one anti-Campomanes campaigner in Latin America;
the Delegates have accepted the utter corruption of FIDE's rating list and
title award system; the Delegates have accepted the decision of a previous
Policy Board to hire the Pinkerton Detective Agency to investigate GM Larry
Evans; and we are sure that the Delegates will accept Mr. Hanken's behavior in
Mr. Snead: At every time and every place in the long history of man, what's
acceptable is what's accepted.
Subject: Opportunity in Moscow
Date: 26 Nov 1994 19:07:25 GMT
[Posted on behalf of Larry Parr]
Preface to Memorandum
The following memo "Opportunity in Moscow" was written before the
Kasparov-Campomanes rapprochement that has so
dismayed the world chess
community. It was sent to all seven members of the USCF Policy Board and
Executive Director Al Lawrence. Unfortunately, our FIDE delegation will
any effort to assert a strong Western presence in that organization for
reasons outlined in this preface.
The common estimate is that Donald Schultz, who will soon replace Arnold
Denker as our Zonal President, spent over $10,000
to win his seat on the board
in 1992. Several people have publicly wondered why anyone would spend this
amount of money to serve in an ostensibly unpaid, "volunteer" post.
The answer is quite simple: Serving on the Board pays in hard cash. Not only
do board members receive free airfare plus room and board at various national
tournaments (most notably, the U.S. Open) they also rake in many perks. Take
the case of member-at-large Don Schultz.
In 1993 Mr. Schultz and his Fidemate Carol Jarecki spent over $3000 of our
USCF dues money on a week of fun in the sun at the FIDE Congress in Curitiba,
Brazil. Personally, I have no doubt that the two walked hand in hand along
white sand beaches of that tropical paradise just as they strolled hand in
hand along the boardwalk at the 1990 U.S. Open in Jacksonville, Florida.
And what did Mr. Schultz accomplish on this junket? Under pressure from the
Friends of the USCF, he was forced to introduce a resolution to restore Gary
Kasparov and Nigel Short to the FIDE rating list -- a resolution that was
overwhelmingly defeated by Campomanes and his
Then came the 1994 U.S. Championship in Key West, Florida, which Mr. Schultz
organized thanks to a vote by his fellow policy board members. My sources say
that his fee was $5,000 plus about three weeks of free room and board for
himself and Fidemate Jarecki.
So far that's $8,000 of our dues money in less than a year -- not counting
the free room and board. A conservative estimate of the man's total rakeoff
comes to $10K for a portion of one year of his three year term.
At the 1994 U.S. Open, USCF Delegates voted to raise our membership taxes
$30 to $40 for regular members and from $20 to $30 for seniors. The board
promised the Delegates -- and by extension the rest of us -- that this tax
increase would be supplemented by a good faith effort on its part to reign in
expenses and to end political favors and junkets as usual.
Need one say it?
My sources state that the current board, after extending promises of good
faith in order to weasel a dues-tax increase, will decide this week
whether to send Mr. Schultz and Fidemate Jarecki on another
USCF-subsidized vacation -- this time for a week of snuggling in the snow
in Moscow. The total price tag could run to between $3K and $5K. However,
my sources state that they both may be using frequent flier miles and only
hit the federation for $500 apiece (or perhaps more) to cover their hotel
and meals at the FIDE Congress.
True enough, Moscow is no tropical paradise. But the Schultz-Jarecki duo
will NOT be living like ordinary Russians. They will enjoy snuggling in
the snow to the extent that our dues dollars can buy a good time.
And what will we get for our money?
My sources state that Mr. Schultz, who is being smuggled in to the Zonal
presidency by his fellow board members after being asked to quit as our FIDE
delegate by 75% of our top players, is going to Moscow so that our current
FIDE Delegate Fan Adams can promote him for a position within FIDE.
And what about serving the interests of the United States? As outlined in the
following memo, those interests are intertwined with a takeover of FIDE by
real chess nations of New Europe and North America. Unfortunately, Mr.
and other members of our FIDE "team" have fought tooth and claw
assertion of American power in FIDE. Indeed, chess remains virtually the only
area in international life where our country is not using its influence as
world's single remaining superpower.
Why? In my view, Don Schultz knows full well that his future in FIDE
depends on Third World thugs controlling world chess so that he can
function as one of the few Westerners willing to play the role of
intermediary. If New Europe were to reassert control, then talented and
brilliant men -- multi-lingual and dynamic men -- would shove him aside.
There is no way that a Don Schultz, whom even his good friend Arnold
Denker described at a policy board meeting as an
intellectual "weak link,"
could compete with a Ray Keene or a Kevin O'Connell or any number of other
youthful Europeans hankering to promote chess.
Another major issue at the Moscow Olypiad will be a
of the FIDE/PCA title cycles. This prospect will NOT occur if the members
of our FIDE "team" oppose it vociferously. After all, the job of
delegation is to serve our interests. America currently has a grandmaster
who has survived in both title cycles. Gata Kamsky has spent several years
of his life working to reach the finals of both the FIDE and PCA cycles.
For America to condone or support any deal in which our top player is sold
down the river would not only leave the USCF open to a lawsuit but would
also teach the lesson that hard work and sacrifice can be erased by
faithless chess bureaucrats. Will the spineless board instruct our
delegation to strongly defend Kamsky's interests in
Moscow? Here's betting
that they won't give such instructions to Fan Adams, Don Schultz and Carol
If the board votes money to send the Schultz-Jarecki
tandem on another
FIDE vacation (and my sources say that it is a done deal) it will not only
break faith with those of us who supported a dues-tax increase, it will be
sending a FIDE "team" dedicated to hindering rather than supporting
And so, why did Don Schultz spend thousands to win USCF office? Just toss the
slabs of pork on the dollar scale! Over the past year or so, he has or will
consume by my reckoning well over $10K in USCF resources. Multiply that
by three years, and the sum comes to a reasonable estimate of, say, $35K.
That's the kind of "interest" on a $10K campaign investment which
the cockles of Old Dan Rostenkowski's heart.
Date: October 29, 1994
From: Larry Parr
To: Members of the USCF Policy
Board and Al Lawrence
Subject: USCF International Policy in FIDE
DOES OPPORTUNITY BECKON IN MOSCOW?
In two previous memoranda (dated July 25 and August 28, 1994), Larry Evans
and I provided you with a critique of American policy in FIDE and an
outline of a new, far more dynamic course.
This preliminary proposal contained four points: 1. Conduct extensive
consultations with other advanced chess nations concerning an Agenda for
Change already formulated as a discussion document by the USCF Policy Board;
2. Establish an Association of Advanced Chess Nations within FIDE to push
through the reforms (in the background will be the threat that this
"Association" would become a new "FIDE"); 3. The Agenda
for Change would be
promoted throughout FIDE by our representatives; and 4. With America's
representatives at the forefront, the Association will pursue what John
Dulles once called "vigorously frank diplomacy."
I am writing this brief third memo to inform you of a possible opportunity in
Moscow for major change.
Opportunity in Moscow
The single argument employed by our FIDE "team" against a more
is that although the United States sets the pace in virtually every other
international forum, the situation is different in chess. We are told that
FIDE has a general assembly controlled by Third Worlders
and that we must
maneuver along the edges by supporting the likes of Georgios
Mohammed Ghobash, the latter a notorious
anti-American and anti-Semite. (By
the way, these two guys now trail the Kouatly
As you know, we hold the view that an Agenda for Change can be implemented if
there is the will to do so. Still, the purpose of this memorandum is not to
rehash these points but to note opportunity. The Olympiad and Congress MAY be
very poorly attended, and the European and other democratic Western nations
could constitute not only a majority, but a large majority. We may have a
chance to remake FIDE without particular effort.
We believe that you should instruct our FIDE "team" to prepare an
amendment to FIDE's bylaws creating a "Security Council" of FIDE
including six permanent members (the US., Russia, England, etc.) each of
whom will have the power of veto over any act by the General Assembly, by
the FIDE executive council or any other executive or committee body, and
by any FIDE officer, including the president. The "Security
also have several rotating members without veto power.
The American representatives in Moscow should have the proposal ready for
distribution and should be instructed to establish the proposed
Association of Advanced Chess Nations on the spot. There should be no
mistaking our seriousness of purpose and no telegraphing of the blow.
If I am wrong about low attendance in Moscow, then nothing will have been
except the time spent drafting a brief bylaw revision -- surely a small
expenditure for possibly vast returns.
From: h...@netcom.com (Hal Bogner)
Subject: Re: Opportunity in Moscow
Date: Sun, 27 Nov 1994 21:27:18 GMT
In article <3bak3f$...@newsbf01.news.aol.com> secret...@aol.com
>I would like to thank Larry Parr and Wayne Praeder for the opportunity to
>focus on USCF Policy Board reimbursements and "perks".
>I am a member of the USCF Policy Board and have been since August of
For those who aren't already aware of who the poster is, she is Rachel
Lieberman, currently serving a threyear term as
USCF Secretary. Having known
Rachel and her husband, Myron (who has also served on the Policy Board in the
past) during the 1980s, I'd like to address some issues that are only dealt
with indirectly here.
>Larry Parr, in a letter posted by Wayne Praeder, states "Serving on the
>(USCF POLICY BOARD) pays in hard cash." He further states "Not
>members receive free airfare plus room and board at various national
>tournaments (most notably the U.S. Open) they also rake in many
>I would like to address these accusations.
Rachel: Perhaps you feel that all of you on the Policy Board are being
by the same brush, and you may be right. I urge you not to take Parr's
statement personally, but rather to address some important underlying issues.
For all the years that I have known you and Myron, I would say that you are
very nearly the least likely targets of such accusations.
Still, there is a very important issue here. There have been PB members
have abused their positions for personal gain while wearing the mantle of
The most simple and easily ended cases are related to National
(For readers who are unfamiliar, most USCF tournaments are only sanctioned by
the USCF. Only a few events, like the various National Championships -
invitational and open - and two major swiss events
- the National Open and the
US Open - are directly under the control of the USCF. These events are
out to bid, and co-sponsored by a "local" organizer and the USCF,
and the USCF
handles the money.)
Over the years, the PB has included many experienced tournament directors,
some of these have served as directors of National Tournaments. To name
of those that I recall seeing direct at national events (this won't be
all-inclusive): Tim Redman, Steve Doyle, Harry Sabine, Myron Lieberman, and
Randy Hough come immediately to mind. Some of these people are great
some aren't. But like any TD at major event, they have probably all
payment for their services.
I contend that during a person's tenure on the PB, one should only accept
reimbursement of expenses for official USCF business, and not fees of any
kind, from the USCF itself. If this causes a problem for TDs on the PB,
avoid serving at Nationals for the duration of your terms, or serve as
volunteers. Frankly, there are plenty of good TDs out there, and the PB
simply to small to hold them all, so this should not adversely affect the
quality of National events.
There are middling-dificulty cases, too.
Quite a number of PB officials have
also served in FIDE posts, and obtained the benefit of USCF-supported travel
abroad. These poeple include some hig-profile people like Gary Sperling,
now, Don Schultz. Frankly, I don't think there is such a drastic
good people in the USCF that anybody who sits on the PB should also be
required to represent the US to FIDE. This source of contention can
eliminated. And people like Don are certainly capable of choosing which
they would like to serve in.
There are harder cases, too. The hardest, but most highly visible, is
Bill Goichberg (IMHO). The nation's largest
sponsor of sanctioned
tournaments, Bill seemed to be on the PB primarily to protect and advance his
own business interests. One big plus was that Bill is a pro, and has
great ideas, and lots of experience. And he's a pretty a-political,
bottom-line kind of guy. But one big minus was that Bill wanted to gain
control over certain National events (the US Open and National Open, in
particular). Fred Gruenberg, who has organized the National Open
many times, successfully fought him over that one. But Bill has had a
adverse affect on the US Open, and it may never fully recover. His
Philly (1993) was bad enough, and now he will organize it remotely in
California, at another bad location, with only moderate help from an
very strong state organization. In 1981, the northern CA state
with a central location (Palo Alto), attracted 710 players, more than any US
Open since the Fischer boom. Philly, home of Goichberg's
Open, only brough Bill nearly 500 players.
Personally, I can't decide whether
Bill is trying to make money running the US Open, or trying to sabotage it to
reduce competition to his highly-profitable World Open. Either way,
it is clear that his position on the Policy Board was used to secure those
bids. And I am sure that it was this abuse of public position for
opportunity that cost Bill Goichberg the election
when he ran against Denis
Barry for USCF President in 1993.
>I have never received any compensation from USCF other than a
>of out of pocket expenses and travel to (and lodging at) official USCF
>Policy Board meetings.
Rachel: Your situation is not what Parr is really attacking (or at least, I
won't credit that it is!). Even the "perks" Parr attacks
(above) are probably
appropriate in most cases. It's not all joy to have to spend your
(time off for most people) travelling and "working" as a volunteer
and then fly home and go back to work, tired.
I frankly doubt that Parr can find a single serious business - non-profit
or profit - that doesn't have call to send it's Board members on trips for
>As Secretary it is my responsibility to publish the "Policy Board
>run elections by mail, and communicate by mail, phone and fax to other
>members, committees, and the office. Printing, phone, and postage aren't
>If I need to advance such costs I certainly do expect to be
>My efforts include tasks that have been previously done by the office for
>Secretary. This results in a saving of time and money for the office for
>which I am not compensated and do not expect to be compensated.
>As the August Policy Board and Delegates' meetings are held at the same
>as the U.S. Open, USCF does pay my way to the site of the U.S. Open for
>meetings but not to the U.S. Open itself (the meetings last a few days,
>the entire length of the tournament). Travel, lodging, and some food
>allowance is certainly to be expected for the duration of the meeting
>(but not before or after). My husband, Myron, travels with me at our own
>expense. We both lose pay for time lost at our jobs when we must meet or
>travel on work days. We expect and receive no compensation.
>I have visited some tournaments (national and otherwise) at my own
>I do so to make myself accessible to the membership and to make myself
>directly aware of problems and achievements. I feel that it helps me
>the members more effectively.
>I volunteered to serve on the Policy Board because, frankly, I wanted to
>promote chess. If you have been reading the BINFOs and "CL" for
>and a half you may have seen many examples of my doing just that. I
>continue to promote chess and to carry out the responsibilities of
>as effectively as possible.
>I have noted many posts that express concern about the past. My focus is
>future. I would urge those who would spend time and energy to attack and
>destroy to redirect that energy to help me build the future of chess in a
>positive way. We all have something to offer. Let's work together.
Rachel: Parr has raised serious issues. Please don't discount them just
because they come from Parr.
The PB needs to be very open about dealing with this stuff, and to set and
demonstrably maintain high standards in dealing with any financial
transactions that might be related to serving on the PB.
Please turn the same light that you cast on your own integrity towards all PB
members, past, present, and future. You may feel uncomfortable
this publicly, but I cannot help being certain that you have to at least
of these issues privately when you are called on to vote on such things as a
national tournament bid involving a fellow PB member.
There is no need for these conflicts of interest to persist. There
far more capable people in the USCF community than there are "official
positions" to fill. Let's shine in some more light, raise the
(would the "Cesear's wife" standard be
too high?), and encourage people to
find appropriate places in which to serve. Open up the process, make
be seen again as the honorable activity it should be, and encourage more
people to participate!
That will be the formula on which this generation of PB members should be
former president, Southern California Chess Federation
and lots of other things, besides, including...
member, Chess Pols Anonymous (8 years so far;
haven't touched a drop!)
From: wprae...@news.holonet.net (Wayne Praeder)
Subject: Re: Opportunity in Moscow
Date: 28 Nov 1994 02:44:27 GMT
replies to USCF secretary Rachel Lieberman
For Chrissakes! USCF secretary Rachel Lieberman,
whom I have publicly praised
on several occasions, entered these precincts with a posting that I can only
describe as half straw man and half hysteria.
No one has accused her and her husband Myron of a single thing. Got that?
HalBogner discusses at length how the inbred
political culture is beginning
to injure major federation assets. He examines the sad recent history of the
U.S. Open which has careened from one airport wilderness hotel to another. In
Chicago last August, the event landed at a theadbare
Ramada Inn in an area
surrounding O'Hare; predictably there was not even a coffee shot open in this
I will never forget the 1990 U.S. Open in Jacksonville, Florida. I had just
finished putting to bed an issue of GLASNOST NEWS AND REVIEW and had been
awake several days thanks to that great amphetamine known as black coffee.
After getting off the plane, I had an awful headache and innocently set
out in search for a cup of coffee at around three in the afternoon. First,
I went to the single restaurant in the hotel. It was closed. I was told
there were some vending machines downstairs. Alas, everyone else in the
hotel had also raided these machines, which were now empty. Back at the
desk, I was instructed to walk across an alley to an office building which
had an excellent cafeteria -- or so I was told. Unfortunately, that
cafeteria was also closed until dinner.
By now I realized that a cup of coffee was not to be found within easy
distance. I finally ran into Igor Ivanov, the
Russian man-mountain of cheerful
demeanor who was stretching his legs during a game. Igor immediately went to
the playing area to get two cups of coffee; he watched proudly as I drained
them both. "You happy now, gospodin
Parr?" came his question in Russglich.
The point here is that you would never have gathered from the account in
Life that the 1990 U.S. Open, like so many others, had a distrastous
and was an insult to every innocent member who bought the outright lies in
national magazine about how wonderful the U.S. Opens were.
Need I say it? That tournament was also organized by a member of the board.
The fact is that many hundreds of USCF members have been slapped in the face
and spat upon by lies in Chess Life about the quality of the U.S. Open, the
premier showcase of how well chess politicians can run an event.
Could it be possible? Was the U.S. Open really held at a hotel where for
hours during a given day it was impossible to find anything to drink
beyond water or anything to eat? Is it possible that such a fact would not
be mentioned in the Chess Life report?
As a former Chess Life editor, I am not criticizing other editors for
pap. If they cross the politicians, they are out the door. Period.
I personally penned some lies about the 1986 U.S. Open. But the kind words
that I expended on the Denker-Schultz vehicle in
Florida 1985 and Ralph Hall's
efforts in Portland 1987 were the gospel truth. These two U.S. Opens were the
only shining exceptions in memory.
Oh, yes. After arriving at U.S. Open sites with "special low tournament
rates" those of us with room reservations frequently discovered that a
or motel within easy walking distance charged $10 or $20 less a night! I
go on and on about the embarrassing quality of these events; if Rachel cares
to dispute my facts, I am prepared to contrast the reality of these dreary
tournaments with the hype annually published in Chess Life.
Another fiscal outrage was the 1993 U.S. Championship in California, awarded
to -- guess who? -- yet another policy board member. Interplay put up $30K in
prize money and the event was budgeted by the USCF for another $50K. This
board member brought it in for $64K, which included payments to himself and
his staff. The board was outraged but never said peep publicly.
Now, to the case of Donald Schultz. Rachel knows as well as I that he lives
for his Fide junker and his Fidemate
Carol Jarecki for a week of fun in the
sun in Curitiba, Brazil. This year the board has already or is soon to
allocate more money for yet another Don-Carol Fide junket to Moscow.
If this board were truly concerned with representing American interests, they
would send someone like GM Lev Alburt, who speaks
Russian as a native and who
knows the lay of the land far better than Don Schultz, who couldn't speak
words in Russian to save his life. Alburt has
excellent connections with many
of the European as well as GM Kasparov and his people in
Moscow. Here's betting that this board never thought to reach beyond one of
its own, who voted in the past to ban GMs from chess, to find a far more
respected and high-powered person to represent our interests in Moscow.
Another GM whose record in predicting Fide developments is impeccable is GM
Larry Evans, who was never asked whether he is available to represent America
in Moscow. Of course, this is hardly surprising given that the board did not
even have the elemental grace to re-appoint him to the Players Health and
Benefit Fund Committee. He began fighting for this fund as far back as 1978
when he attended the U.S. Open in Phoenix but was barred from addressing the
Delegates because he was only a grandmaster, only the country's most widely
read chess writer and was, therefore, not up to their high standards.
I will never forget the 1990 Fide workshop in Jacksonville when members of
Fide team assured everyone present that Campomanes
had no intention of running
again for president and that if he did he stood little chance of victory. At
this juncture, Evans rose to bet our Fideistas that
Campo would not only run
but win hands down. Schultz and his friends declined the wager and, as always
called him a liar. And, as always, future events proved GM Evans right.
As a former USCF employee and one of the longest serving editors of Chess
Life I was privy to a lot that went on behind the scenes. For example, I
heard the inside story about how Portland was awarded the 1987 U.S. Open
bid. The two main contenders were Portland and a bid from Jerry Hanken in
Los Angeles. Myron: You were then a member of the board, and if I get
something wrong in my recital of what occurred in private sesaps
set it right.
The board was prepared to award it to Hanken, one
of its own members,
until he publicly attacked the Portland bid and bragged that he already
had pledges of fellow board members that the bidding process was a mere
formality. He told everything that he had it all wrapped up.
Came the private session. With the exception of Myron, who as a man of honor
remained true to his earlier pledge, the board turned with a vengeance on
Hanken. They bawled him out for being stupid enough
to mention in public what
had already been agreed upon in private. To save face, they then had no
but to award the bid to Ralph Hall, who did a splendid job in Portland.
There's a lot more that deserves ventilation on these computer networks. I
can't insist that every detail of my account about Portland is accurate;
proceedings are held in closed session, and the best we journalists can do is
piece together the story from various sources.
But if anyone wants to know why there have been so many disastrous U.S. Opens
over the last decade and why it has become so notorious that Chess Life must
lie in order to promote it, look no further than the inbred political culture
of this federation that fights tooth and claw against one-member-one-vote.
From: wprae...@iat.holonet.net (Wayne Praeder)
Subject: Re: FloridaCHESS
Date: Mon, 24 Oct 1994 03:17:20 GMT
[Posted on behalf of
former Chess Life editor Larry Parr]
<<You seem to have a problem
with the facts!>> -- Paul Powell
Paul Powell's Perturbations
If Paul Powell did not exist, the USCF Old Guard would have to invent him.
Like other antagonists before him, he resolutely moves from issue to issue
without admitting evident mistakes that I already pointed out. I also note
with some satisfaction that he demonstrated beyond any doubt that he is
honest broker, and that he has no intention of asking Donald Schultz any of
the four uncomfortable questions suggested in my last posting.
Instead, Paul decides to descend to base insults and accusations. Thus, he
states that on the Usenet he happened to notice en passant that someone
"enjoyed accusations of being connected with the CIA." Paul doesn't
spook -- he just notes that such an accusation has been made without,
mentioning my denial of any connection with the CIA. Neat.
The quality of his argument is his repeated charge, with no attempt to adduce
any evidence, that I would write a series of anti-Semitic hit letters for the
sake of prevailing in a contest of chess politics. Notice: he makes no effort
to present false evidence; he simply retails a smear.
I could also write, "Paul Powell is the kind of person who would send
anti-Semitic hit letters to help his friend Jerry Hanken."
I never met Paul
and present no evidence for such a charge. MY POINT: This kind of ad hominen
attack is precisely Paul's method of argumentation. No better, no worse.
On other issues, Paul has still failed to post an apology for his ludicrous
claim that Larry Evans, who was the only target of a Pinkerton probe, is
exonerated only if he concedes that Jerry Hanken,
who was not investigated,
was also exonerated. I also note that Paul has nothing to say about his own
Delegates' resolution condemning GM Evans, who lives in Reno, for attending
meals in New York City with then USCF president Maxim ugy,
Gary Kasparov, et
alia, when, in fact, GM Evans was never within 2,000 miles of such meals!
After telling us he was not serious for criticizing the Friends of the USCF
for describing itself as an ad hoc group when it had a chairman, treasurer
editor, Paul now leaves it to readrs to decide if
he was serious. In any
case, he objects to my reply to his PUBLIC posting because, he claims, he was
just trying to tweak GM Evans.
Really, this USCF delegate from Delaware is a fine piece of work.
Who was the Target of the Pinkerton Probe?
The only point Paul has chosen to seriously contest is who was the target of
the Pinkerton probe. He quoted PB93-27 introduced by Jerry Hanken which,
already conceded, did not name anyone specifically.
Never mind that Hanken's original resolution did
name GM Evans before it was
camouflaged for legal reasons. I say never mind because, after all, we
haveDon Schultz himself to tell us who the target
was. Here are just two
PUBLIC postings on the USAT Computer network:
"The charge of the committee was to authorize
nationally known investigative agency to verify
the hit letter from Prentice in the last PB election
in envelopes that used labels that were direct
copies of the
labels used in the campaign letter mailed out by GM
The PB authorized an expenditure of $1,000 for this
was the anticipated charge." -- Don Schultz,
December 13, 1992.
"I voted for the funding of the label
investigation because I
consider it, if proven, very damning evidence. If in
fact it is
proven that the labels of the Evans mailing and that
Prentice mailing were an original and a copy; then
did it or there has to be another logical
explanation of how this
happened. This will certainly be debated if the
positive. But I must say that the argument that they
been copied anytime is too superficial. A full
scenario would have to be advanced before I would
convinced." -- Don Schultz, January 30, 1993.
No other mailing labels and no other tests were conducted by the Pinkertons.
So, then, is Paul Powell now calling Don Schultz a bloody liar? Is he saying
that when Don identified GM Evans as the unnamed target of Hanken's motion,
Don was not telling us the truth and nothing but the truth?
Finally, VP Frank Camaratta was the liason with the Pinkertons.
his official signed report dated March 12, 1993, along with a paragraph that
was censored before it was released to the public. The censored portion was
not indented originally; I have done so only to identify what PB members
Hanken, Randall Hough and Gary Sperling
wanted to suppress from the already
highly politicized minutes. VP Camaratta agreed to
delete the key paragraph
only under intense pressure from these three chess poliicians.
THE PRENTICE AFFAIR
In response to election fraud charges surrounding the 1992 campaign for USCF
Member-at-Large, the USCF Policy Board authorized (PB93-27) the expenditure
of $1000 to have certain physical evidence examined by the Pinkerton
Investigative Services. The request for members to submit related physical
evidence was answered by six parties: GM Larry Evans, Mr. William Goichberg,
Mr. Jerome Hanken, Mr. Ralph Whitford,
Mr. Donald Schultz and the USCF office.
The office provided examples of mailing labels printed on its two printers,
as well as a list of members who had ordered voting member mailing labels and
disks. The period covered was from March to June, 1992.
Messrs. Goichberg, Hanken
and Whitford submitted physical evidence in the
form of original mailing envelopes containing campaign literature from GM
Larry Evans and original mailing envelopes containing the apparently
fraudulent Fred Prentice letter. The thrust of the hypothesis was that, if
the mailing labels on the Prentice envelopes were copies of those on the
Evans envelopes, then GM Larry Evans would be implicated.
GM Larry Evans submitted circumstantial evidence and
conjecture which, he contended, could implicate
Hanken, Hough and Goichberg. The essence of that evidence
was: the alleged presence of Mr. Randall Hough in
Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara areas on the day the
letters were postmarked (Hough and a witness state
were travelling that day on I-5 between LA and the
Francisco Bay Area -- over 100 miles from San Luis
and Santa Barbara); striking similarities between
phrases found in the Prentice letter and language
used by Mr. Hanken during
certain conversations (which Mr.
Hanken denies); and the
contention that Mr. Goichberg had
"free reign" in the New Windsor offices of
the USCF after
hours and on weekends, during which time, it is
could have made unauthorized mailing labels.
No examples of the Mounier envelopes were
submitted. The Pinkerton
investigation concluded that the labels from the Evans campaign letters and
the labels from the Prentice mailing were ORIGINALS AND THAT NEITHER THE
LABELS NOR THE POST MARKS SHOWED ANY SIGNS OF TAMPERING. HENCE, THE MAILING
LABELS WERE NOT COPIES ND THIS HYPOTHESIS ATTEMPTING TO LINK GM LARRY EVANS
WITH THE FRAUDULENT MAILINGS HAS BEEN DISPROVED [italics ours]. No attempt
was made to pursue the circumstantial evidence and conjecture submitted by
Mr. Evans because of the difficulty in proving the allegations, the cost
involved and because it was beyond the narrow charge of the subcommittee.
There can be no conclusions drawn from the results of this investigation
other than the fact that the Evans and Prentice mailing labels were
originals. The total cost of the investigation was $670.
Frank A. Camaratta, Jr. U.S.C.F. Vice President --
arch 12, 1993
[The following item appeared in the USCF Delegates Newsletter,
††††† independent† publication† of the Friends of the USCF† (Volume† 2,
††††††††††††††††††††††††† number 1, May-June 1993.]
†††††††††††††††††††† GOICHBERG DEFENDS PERSONAL JUDGMENT
††††††††††††††††††††††††††† PROMISES MORE OF SAME
NEW WINDSOR, N.Y., APRIL. 12--In a telephone interview of April 11,
presidential candidate William Goichberg denied using poor judgment
pressuring the USCF Policy Board to allocate up to $1,000 to
time U.S. chess champion Larry Evans. If elected, Mr. Goichberg pledged
employ the same standards of judgment on other questions.
"The only thing that I would do differently," said Goichberg, "is to
investigate suspects at private expense, since we felt obliged to
the USCF for the Pinkerton bills after the findings disproved my theory
Questions about Goichberg's judgment have arisen after a USCF-funded
investigation concluded that mailing labels on an anti-Semitic hit
the Eddis-Schultz campaign were NOT photocopies of labels used by
Evans in a mailing of his own.
"What set the whole thing off," said Vice President Frank Camaratta,
of the committee that investigated GM Evans, "was Bill Goichberg
these were copies. The way he presented it, it was difficult to turn
††††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††Poor Judgment?
GM Evans and others have criticized Goichberg's judgment in light not
Evans' exoneration but also of Goichberg's methodology. States Evans,
received a hit letter from San Luis Obispo and simply took the envelope
photocopy store and asked a clerk if the label was an original or a
clerk answered in about five seconds -- it was an original. Then, I
an eminent police documents examiner and received his opinion that it
original. The cost was only $50 -- not the $670 billed to the USCF!"
Goichberg critics argue that before pressuring the Policy Board to
what turned out to be a baseless and, they say, embarrassing
he ought to have done his homework like Evans did. Says Goichberg in
acted on the basis of a reasonable theory. The theory was obviously
but there was no attempt to manufacture evidence."
One Goichberg supporter says, "Look, Bill got caught up in Jerry
witch-hunt hysteria. McCarthyism has no place in chess. I know that.
Goichberg is an institution, and he shouldn't be judged by this single
any more than we should condemn Denis Barry for once opposing
rules in tournaments."
Jan. 8, 1995
TO THE DELEGATES
AND VOTING MEMBERS
I have received
many phone calls and it is apparent that there is a
preponderance of misinformation being circulated concerning the recent FIDE
election. Therefore, I feel it is my responsibility to forward
official report of our FIDE delegate. I know that a significant number of
voting members have already seen this report, while others have not, and
fairest thing is to disseminate this document...
Regretfully, I was
driving across country at the time of this incident and
not contacted to take part in the discussions or in the vote...
I am appalled by
the report of the unethical and “gangster” tactics
so-called election process in FIDE. Equally disturbing was the “unfair”
pressure on the Policy Board members resulting in a HASTY DECISION to
our delegate’s position. Therefore, I have
requested that the Executive
Director, Al Lawrence, and the Vice President, Fred Gruenberg, prepare a
written report explaining the circumstances precipitating the vote of the
It is even more
disturbing that we did not take the advise of our
or consider the wishes of our players who concurred with our delegates’
judgement. Some members of the Policy Board tell me
they did not have all
facts needed to make an informed decision. The unification of the World
Championship was uppermost in their minds.
I extend my
appreciation to Fan Adams*, Donald Schultz, and Carol Jarecki
their efforts to uphold the INTEGRITY OF OUR REPRESENTATION in FIDE.
In my estimation
Fan Adams acted HONORABLY and in the BEST INTERESTS of
in the United States and in the World. His resignation is a major loss for
USCF. Fan Adams’ Report speaks for itself. I will
let you draw your own
* Fan Adams is the
President of the American Chess Foundation. He has
millions of dollars for Scholastic Chess Programs in the inner-city
The ACF contributes to the USCF for Amateur, Blind, Women’s
well. Fan has served, without compensation, as USCF’s FIDE Delegate for
Fan Adams' FIDE report
8-15 December 1994
Kasparov and Short reentered the FIDE rating list.
US titles were granted at this meeting. Title regulations
was amended to allow two rounds a day for one GM norm. This means that
tournaments such as the New York Open and World Open can now yield GM
RULES Carol Jarecki will report separately.
ARBITERS Carol Jarecki will report separately.
FINANCE The Greek
Ministry of Sports signed an agreement to pay FIDE an
subsidy of SF 250,000 for 50 years. The agreement was never ratified by
Parliament, and the subsidy was paid only through June 30, 1993, leaving a
large hole in FIDE's budget. Negotiations continue, but hope is slim.
Interestingly, Makropolis made a considerable scene
in the General Assembly
because Campomanes has been visiting the Greek Ministry without
even informing Makropolis,the President of the Greek Chess Federation.
For the year ending
30 June 1994 FIDE lost about SF 200,000, ending the
with about SF 400,000 in the bank. Bank accounts have increased to about
SF 600,000 recently, as Federations (or someone on their behalf) paid back
dues in order to participate in the Olympiads and Conference.
Assembly voted to eliminate the annual stipends of both the
President (SF 150,000) and the General Secretary (SF 90,000), with an
offsetting increase to travel expense of SF 40,000. The 1994-95 budget also
forfeiture of SF 180,000 deposited by a Greek company which
undertook to raise money for a FIDE building in Athens. The 1995-96 budget
assumes SF 200,000 income from the World Championship. If these and other
assumptions hold, FIDE will operate at about a breakeven level of SF
The usual effort to
to raise rating fees ended surprisingly in a
eliminate fees for first 200 players in each country. The US ceiling of
SF 3000 will not be changed.
It is interesting
to speculate why anyone would wish to be President of
with lots of work, no pay, and little glory. Curiosity is heightened by
Campomanes's claim that he personally gave SF
140,000 to the
Karpov-Timman prize fund, and confirmation that Kouatly gave SF 100,000.
FIDE statutes require that candidate teams declare 6
months before the GA meeting. Teams headed by Makropolis,
Durao and Kouatly
entered the race on
schedule, campaigning with varying degrees of energy.
As election time approached, the loss of the Greek subsidy was revealed,
leaving Makropolis in a weak position. Durao, a nice man, had insufficient
support. A walkover by Kouatly appeared likely.
What were factors that led
Campomanes and the Russian Chess Federation to
mount their brutal takeover?
The following may
have been influential.
- The loss of
the Greek subsidy was compounded by the revelation in
that the Greeks would not fund the Olympiads. The offer of the
step into the breach would avoid the probability that Campomanes would
leave office with no Olympiads an embarrassing failure.
- At the
April Congress of the Russian Chess Federation (RCF), the members
dismissed President Bebchuk and First VP Karpov, electing Andrei Makarov
President. The change of power also changed control over the valuable
estate of the Moscow Chess Club. Karpov and his
fighting what they see as an illegal takeover, and expecting
Parliament on the subject. The legal position of the takeover team
would be strengthened by FIDE recognilion.Campomanes
until the overall deal was worked out with the RCF in Oclober. Karpov,
FIDE champion, was not allowed a team in the Olympiads, nor to altend
Makarov is a lawyer, a member of Parliament, a Yeltsin
supporter, and a
scary looking guy who weighs in at the 300-400 pound range.
Christiansen reported that Makarov
beat up a Russian reporter who
the validily of Makarov's
IM title. The title application, in good
cleared FIDE wilhout difficulty.
Subsequently a letter from deposed
President Bebchuk alleged that the
application was fraudulent, based on
fictitious games. Ieading FIDE to
suspend the title while under
investigation. The RCF submitted score sheets and affidavits to
the application. An apparent absence in the tournament hall was
explained by Makarov being busy and
thus playing the games in his
Karpov was circling the meetings
alleging that the players signing the
scoresheets and affidavits had been
subjected to death threats. While
truth may never be known, this incident gives the flavor of the
goings-on in Moscow. Campomanes confirmed
the IM title at the time of
- The chief
argument for the takeover was that reunification of FIDE and
PCA was a good thing in the eyes of the chess world and sponsors
agreed), and that only Campomanes
could implement reunification, the nut
the problem. The insistence on Campomanes
may be based on some of the
factors above as well as on Kasparov's strong, personal dislike
based on past incidents. Bear in mind that neither the PCA nor
to have firm funding for the finals of their respective world
matches. Perhaps Kasparov believes that Campomanes
can deliver Indian
funding. It is worth mentioning here that throughout the Moscow
Kouatly behaved perfectly, keeping calm and responsive to
accusations and innuendo from his opponents, including Kasparov.
THE ELECTIONS On
December 8, the first day of the congress, Campomanes
Kasparov released two parts of a joint declaration (copies attached). The
parts pointed out the benefits of reunification and listed implementing
There was no mention of a new electoral ticket. On the evening of December
the Executive Council unanimously endorsed the declaration. On December 11
Kouatly fully endorsed the declaration and pledged
that his team would
From the first day
an endless series of election meetings and parties
up. While Campomanes and his ticket did not
announce, it was evident that
was a good possibility of an attempt to reopen nominations. It appeared
Europe (including Eastern Europe) and the Americas were strongly opposed to
Campomanes, Africa was evenly split, the former
Soviet territories and Asia
favor. Later voting confirmed this. As the days passed, pressures of every
from the Campomanes/RCF team grew
On December 12, the
last hour of the last day of a three-day Central
meeting, Campomanes dropped part three of the Campomanes/Kasparov
(attached) on the table. Part three took the position that only a special
transition team of two years headed by Campomanes
could carry out
reunification, and nominated Campomanes as
President, without nominating
balance of the team. Bitter debate followed with Europe and the Americas in
and the usual Campomanes camp followers in favor.
progress could be made, the matter was put of to the next day's General
continued on the opening day of the GA, centering on the
illegality of allowing a new ticket under the FIDE Statutes. The point that
the statutes only
allow four year terms was quickly countered by Kasparov
Campomanes agreeing to extend the nomination to
four years. However, the
statutes also require that the President send to the participants the
agenda and supporting documents at least six weeks before the opening of
(so that Federations will have time to study them before dispatching their
delegates).This is particularly important in a venue such as Moscow, where
international communications for ordinary delegates are from bad to
Any variation from the statutes requires a two-thirds vote of the GA.
Unfortunately,interpretation of the statutes can
only be done by the GA
Delegates from Europe and the Americas insisted on a vote to require the
application of the two-thirds rule, and further that that election-related
vote be taken by secret ballot. Campomanes dragged
out the discussion to
evening to give his group more time to accumulate votes. He was obviously
by surprise by the strong opposition, which included many of his former
It appeared that
the Campomanes ticket would be rejected, as the
unremitting. At this point the USCF PB, led by Gruenberg and Lawrence, and
followed mindlessly by four other PB members, stepped in to save the day
the ugly coup. Apparently Kasparov called Lawrence in Bob Rice's office(?),
offering a package
of threats and promises to persuade the PB to reverse
position of the Moscow team. Please note that not only Adams, Schultz and
Jarecki were in full accord, but that every member
of the US men's and
team supported our position; they saw what was going on. Gruenberg and
Lawrence started to work the phones, in some cases not revealing that the
Moscow team was opposed to their pitch.
At 7:30 AM on the
morning of December 14, thirty minutes before the busses
for the conference, I was called to the phone to receive orders from the PB
support the inclusion of the Campomanes ticket on
the ballot. I said that I
could not support a
brutal, illegal takeover. Gruenberg had the idiocy to
accuse me of following my own agenda because I was against Kasparov, an
absurdity considering the good things that the PCA has done for the ACF.
more of the same the PB maintained its position and I resigned as FIDE
delegate. Perhaps not trusting a phone record, the PB sent immediately a
THROUGH THE FIDE OFFICE ordenng me to support the
inclusion of tke
ticket on the ballot. While I had resigned vis-a-vis the PB, Schultz and I
could think of no easy way to transfer the delegate's authority to him, and
were concerned by his planned early departure. I therefore felt obligated
stay and vote the PB line. Upon arrival in the conference hall, we were met
Campomanes, who smilingly said that he understood
that the US had changed
Again the debate
raged with endless coffee breaks and other delays by
Campomanes. Finally an open vote was taken on a
motion that the vote on the
two-thirds issue be
secret. The motion passed 69 to 68. When the Kazakh
delegate voted "secret", Makarov rose to
his feet and started bellowing at
in Russian in allegedly abusive or threatening language. Karpov
in turn received the working end of the bellowing. The Kazakh delegate then
asked to change his
vote, but was, of course, denied.
Following the loss
of this vote, Campomanes, Kouatly
and Makarov entered
negotiations. Reliable repons are that Kouatly offered Campomanes the
FIDE with special responsibility for reunification with the PCA. Campomanes
was ready to
withdraw his reentry attempt and accept, but Makarov
being named VP, a demand which Kouatly could not
agree to out of loyalty to
team of six months.
Late in the evening
a vote on the two-thirds issue was reached. This was
kev vote. After consultation with Schultz, I
decided that the PB mandate
required me to vote against the the motion to
require a two-thirds majority
reopen nominations. The motion failed 70-68. The PB can take full credit
this outcome. If I had not been silenced that morning, I could have kept
several votes, in addition to my own,in the
opposition camp. The switch of
US to support a brutal takeover attempt cast a serious damper on the
of the Western, democratic countries.The coup
succeeded only because of the
Attempts to vote on
the reentry issue that mght were stopped as
approaching. On the morning of December 15 it was evident that the fight
lost. Delegates talked of threats and envelopes of cash handed out in the
during the night. Apparently still working on votes and proxies, Campomanes
managed to delay
the vote on opening renominations until afternoon,
easily passed by a
vote of 78 to 66. Campomanes finally named the
of his team: Gobash for Dep. Pres., Makarov for VP, Makropolis for
and Ickliki for Treas. Durao
withdrew, and Campomanes received 79 votes to
Kouatly's 65. Campomanes
immediately named Kouatly and Durao
VPs at large,
whatever that means.
continued after midnight when elections for the Executive
and other committees took place. I was asked by many Latin-American and
European countries to run for Executive Council, but declined as I could
panicipate in a corrupted FIDE. It was revealing to
watch the delegate from
Kazakh in the chair directly in front of mine filling out his ballot as
Makarov stood over him pointing out which boxes to
check. The voting went
until 4:00 AM, but I went to bed in disgust long before that.
the PB action, Kouatly would have won a clean
would have named Campomanes to the Chair with
special responsibility to
with the PCA, and reunification would have gone ahead immediately or in the
near future. Following
the PB action, a dirty election underlying
"reunification" may well come to the attention of sponsers, actual or
potential, who may feel that association with FIDE or the PCA does not suit
the image which
they are trying to project. The PB action was not only
in itself, but could well put sponsorship at risk. Let us hope that I am
January 19, 1995
To the Delegates
and Voting Members,
When I ran for Vice
President of the Chess Federation I had high hopes of
contributing my energies and my experience of forty years in business to do
something really worthwhile for chess and the Federation. Many of you
supported me for these same reasons. I still appreciate that. At that time
supported and voted for Denis Barry for President because he promised
leadership, consensus building, honesty and an effort to upgrade our staff
that we would have professionals running our Federation - there would be no
micro-management. In his campaign letters he promised that he would put the
promotion of chess above any petty partisan concerns. Unfortunately, his
actions have proved exactly the opposite.
I have had three
calls from Denis Barry supporters asking me not to report
what has been happening. I was also told that if I didn't write this letter
would have their support if I ran for President next election. Well, I
support someone who is as divisive and whose actions are as destructive as
our President. He is petty, mean spirited, self serving, clannish and
IT SEEMS THAT DENIS’ MAIN MOTIVE FOR WANTING TO BE PRESIDENT WAS TO ‘GET
WITH HIS ENEMIES AND PROMOTE HIS FRIENDS!
LET'S TALK ABOUT
It was clear at the
very first meeting back in Philly in 1993 that the
the campaign was nothing like the Denis Barry who was now President.
Looking for consensus and reconciliation the Board made a key personnel
decision which transcended chess politics. Denis bitterly argued against
6-1 decision before finally accepting it, UNTIL NEXT MORNING WHEN HE CAME
AND REOPENED THE CASE WASTING ANOTHER THREE HOURS OF BOARD TIME. Only the
reality of a 1-6 vote caused him to finally relent and make it
unanimous. Then he spent the next year plotting and lobbying to overturn
this decision. He finally succeeded in reversing the decision in Chicago in
1994 by razzledazzling us with MISREPRESENTATIONS
AND OUTRIGHT LIES. HE
PRESENTEDD HIS ARGUEMENTS BEFORE THE BOARD EVEN AFTER HE WAS ADVISED BY
COUNSEL THAT HIS INFORMATION WAS ILL-ADVISED AND MIGHT BE SLANDEROUS! This
LET'S TALK ABOUT
When Denis visits
the office he always gives orders to the staff and
THAT they carry them out. On receiving one of these orders a staff member
asked if it was okay to discuss his demand with the Executive Director, Al
Lawrence? Denis yelled, " DO WHAT I TELL YOU - I’M THE PRESIDENT!"
Denis actually went
on the record at the February, 1994 Board meeting with
motion that the President would have to approve all contracts of five
dollars or more. He was shamed by the rest us into withdrawing the motion.
Look it up!
LET'S TALK ABOUT
He constantly tries
to undermine our Executive Director! Why? At the US
Chicago in August of 1994 he told me ,"I AM TRYING TO GET AL LAWRENCE
GET HIM TO QUIT!" I was surprised! He was also surprised! He said,
that was what you wanted too!" Of course it wasn't! I wanted a top notch
assistant for our Executive Director and we fulfilled that goal by hiring
George Filippone! After we hired George, Denis made
one of his surprise
to the office knowing that our ED would be away. During that visit he told
George that Al really didn't want to hire him, that it was his ( Denis' )
decision, and then he tried to enlist George's aid in SPYING on our
Director. What a guy!
In his efforts to
further undermine our ED he gives him tasks to complete
without enough time to do them. Denis constantly sends baiting and bullying
memos to the ED
demanding time wasting responses. Another one of his
devices is to send material highly derogatory of the ED through
and public channels. He has REPEATEDLY disregarded requests to funnel these
He even makes frivolous requirements during hectic
such as asking for the results of the ED's physical exam when Al was
to design and print a Christmas catalog.
In a recent
critical situation concerning FIDE, Denis was not even involved
because he had
failed to make himself available for two weeks. No one could
reach him. I acted
as President. After a 5-1 vote which would guarantee the
unification of PCA
and FIDE, as mandated by DM 94-53, Denis sent a letter
saying we were wrong. Even if we were wrong the results of what we voted
cannot be changed. I have since talked to Bob Rice, Chairman of the PCA,
reviewed the documents in question. I believe that we were right. We have
guaranteed PCA and FIDE unification and have obligated Garry Kasparov to
LET'S TALK ABOUT
For the last two
years Denis has showed up at the US Championships and
for a few days at Federation expense. This is marginal at best, but other
members, including myself, have paid our own way. In Long Beach, California
1993, he left before the awards ceremony. I stood in for him and told him
it looked bad to come for a "vacation" and not stay for the closing
Then last year in Key West, Florida he did it again. He stayed for a few
at Federation expense and then left before the awards ceremony. Did he go
Orlando, Florida that same weekend for the US Class Championships - a
Tournament? Nope, that's a Goichberg tournament, a
hated rival! His plans
to go to a tournament in Reno, Nevada, not a National Tournament! I think
another reason that he left Key West early was because our ED was bringing
documents that Denis had asked for and this way Denis could accuse him of
getting them on time. Give Denis credit though, he's always plotting and
Denis is especially
clever when it comes to his expenses. Denis charged the
plus $14.90 in tolls ( a total of $ 345.20 ) to drive to
the Amateur Team
Tournament in Dearborn, Michigan. HE COULD HAVE FLOWN FOR
$250! But not with his wife! And get this - he charged the Federation
for meals on his trip. WOW, it cost the Federation $472.16 for Denis to
to this tournament. Got any questions? I do. It also cost the Federation
$783.88 last year to 'vacation' Denis at the National Open in Las Vegas for
FIVE days ( A THREE
DAY TOURNAMENT! ). Denis also charges us thirty cents a
mile when he goes
to the doctors. How does he do that? He just pops into
business office on the way! Last time he did this, it cost the Federation
$168.00! Here's one that really grabs me! Denis charged the Federation $596
fly to Birmingham, Alabama. ABSURD!... Denis has ( or can get ) senior
airline tickets at $250 each. How do I know? He told me so!
Denis has been
instrumental in stonewalling the finalization of our ED's
contract, even though our contractual obligation was to have this finalized
last August at the
US Open. Last week ( one week before our Board meeting,
without any Board vote or negotiations with our ED ) he asked our legal
to draft a NEW contract. I don't know what is in it yet, but he is
once again trying to make our ED resign. Our ED, Al Lawrence, earns much
for this Federation than we pay him! In 1995 the Federation will get
commissions from our credit card participation of approximately $60,000!
membership is now approaching 80,000 and we will probably gross $500,000 in
sales - of chess
books and supplies - for the month of December, 1994!
( A HALF - MILLION DOLLAR MONTH!! )
* UNPRECEDENTED and UNBELIEVABLE! *
All the benefits we
reap from our ED are not by accident. I know that our
has been in the office many Sundays - sometimes all day on Sunday! And I am
still amazed that
he can produce a Christmas catalog with no outside
This probably saves the Federation twenty to thirty thousand dollars a
And how about the USCF advertising at the end ofthe
Searching for Bobby
Fischer movie! WE HAVE A DEDICATED, HARD WORKING AND HIGHLY COMPETENT
INDIVIDUAL AT THE HELM. LET HIM STEER OUR SHIP!
I am also enclosing
the controversial confidential memo I faxed to an ex
member last year. At that time we were trying to resolve the finalization
our ED's contract ( we still are! ). It is a memo from our Executive
to Denis. If you read it you'll get an inkling of what has been going on.
You'll also understand why our Legal Counsel at that time ( a real class
resigned. FORTY PER CENT OF OUR MEMOS ARE CONFIDENTIAL! BUT THAT’S ANOTHER
STORY! ! If they weren't you would have been aware of these problems much
earlier. PLEASE READ THE ENCLOSED MEMO CAREFULLY! THANK YOU.
I don't take any
pleasure in writing this kind of letter but I feel very
strongly that the voting members should know what is really going on in
Federation. I could go on and on citing one instance after another of this
President's complete failure in honesty, leadership and every other area.
What's the point!? We don't have impeachment procedures in the Federation
even if we did it wouldn't be worth going through that kind of trauma. What
concerns me most is
his harassment of the professional staff and his
commitment to fire our Executive Director. I hope that you as the voting
members will send a message to Denis;
- BACK OFF - Concentrate on promoting chess and let the
professionals run the business. Maybe you can still
something in the remaining year and a half of your
Yours in chess.
C O N F I D E N T I A L
Procedure: Please register any objections by 10/17/94.
MEMO TO: Denis
DATE: October 3,
responsibilities require me to discuss certain issues with you and the
this memo. I do so only with the most constructive intentions.
hope is that they will be received in that spirit. In confidence, the
and I should be able to discuss whatever serious issue we feel
In a recent
conversation with Harry Sabine, I was surprised to hear that
had told you in Chicago that he preferred to step down as Legal Task
Coordinator. He was concerned that you had consulted other attorneys
his suggestions, without his being given the courtesy of a follow-up
discussion before these matters were finalized. Harry informed me that
told him that he is to hold down his position as advisor for a short
until Hanon Russell can take over.
Additionally, I learned that in Chicago Harry had also explained his
about whether the information you presented us did in fact indicate
Sperling's contract was illegal.
learned from Harry that he had suggested that Gary be included in
legal briefing to the Board in Chicago, but was told by you that Mr.
would not be welcome.
I have a
number of concerns. One is that something is wrong when I hear
news from someone outside of the Board. As part of the team, to be
I need to be informed. Does the rest of the Board know about these
serious concern is that the whole discussion of USCF's
continuance of Gary as counsel was colored by an accusation that may
factual. What's more, WE HAD OFFICIAL, LEGAL ADVISE THAT IT MAY NOT BE
FACTUAL. We did not allow for the accused--in this case Gary--to
he had no opportunity to defend himself against a charge that, if
meant either that he was ignorant of an important law or that he
intentionally ignored the law. Neither did the Board have the
check facts for itself before being asked to vote. One copy of an
as I recall, a vaguely worded letter from Leonard Chipkin,
hastily around the table while you told us that the contract was
PB nor [ was given a chance--to be t;air, we should
insisted on the chance--to study carefully the materials. Harry wasn't
to advise us, and you did not forward his reservations about the
bearing on the contract with Gary.
Not disclosing the
relevant opinion of our Legal Chair was a serious
The board and 1 should have gotten all the relevant facts so that we could
feel confident the proceeding was t:air. There certainly was a good chance
that we would have still been supportive of your personal desire to make a
change, but we could have done so while feeling that we were fair to
and that we knew all the consequences.
I'm concerned that
my recommendation was not given the weight it may have
received if these charges hadn't had such an initial shock value, depriving
me of a legal
advisor of my choice.
But first and
foremost is my concern that USCF must have adequate legal
resources at all times. As the person in charge of USCF business
I have important and practical concerns with our legal representation. As
companies these days, we have more and more frequent need for legal advice.
legal advice, USCF is exposed to liability, and it risks
opportunities as well. USCF has considerably more financial resources than
many of the organizations and people we deal with. This leaves us
to threats of legal action.
Director, I am responsible for the outcome of many decisions
about which I must consult legal counsel, frequently on a day-to-day basis.
counsel or counsels that meet with my approval is not just a
courtesy. I need, more than anyone else, to be comfortable with our total
legal representation. I can tell you that it helps a great deal to have as
resource someone who not only knows the law, but knows the context in which
arise for our organization.
Had I known that
USCF would lack Harry as a coordinator, I would have
that Gary should be kept on as counsel for a longer transition period,
could report that I was confident my concerns were covered. (None of this
meant to indicate any lack of respect for Hanon,
whom I know personally and
like. But he simply
isn't up to speed on our ongoing legal concerns, and I
have only brief professional experience with him. I don't recall your ever
asking my reaction to working with Hanon in this
Had the Board known
Ihat USCF would lack Harry as coordinator, it may
thought about the problem of legal representation ditferently.
I make two
recommendations to the policy board:
request that we put all personal feelings behind us for a while and
the good of the organization the Board permit me to call on Gary as
of our attorneys in a less restricted way than we had planned
restricted than in the past) until February 1, after our Tempe
he will acccpt such an arrangement).
This amounts to an extension of
months, but it would make me feel a great deal more confident
resources to do our business. I will continue to approach law
York to represent us.
Then in Tempe, we would be ready to make a decision that is properly
informed. To summarize this point, I believe myself to have been
proceeding that was unfair, if not in the conclusion it reached,
in the way it was conducted. We have the ability to correct
this. And we
all be committed to fairness--as both a matter of principle and
Although we may reach the same conclusions as we did in Chicago, at
we can resolve the topic knowing we gave it a fair and
In the best interests
of USCF, I respectfully recommend this plan by
objections procedure, and will ask for a conference call meeting if there
objections. lf this call is necessary, it should include Harry, Gary, and
Thank you for
considering my thoughts. I would not make this proposal
thought it extremely important in a very real, practical way.
cc: USCF Policy
Dear USCF Voting
The mailing by Fred Gruenberg dated January 19, 1995, disgraces
the office of National Vice President that he holds. That letter is a
completely unfair and distorted attack on USCF President Denis Barry and
a betrayal of the Policy Board and our Federation.
If Fred had legitimate Concerns, his responsibility to USCF
requires that he would have FIRST brought those concerns to the attention
of our Pollcy Board. That was easy to do as the PB
met in Tempe, Arizona
on January 20-22, 1995 Fred went to that meeting. By instead having his
mailing sent from Chicago on the first day of the PB meeting, before
dlscussing any of his charges with the Policy
Board, Fred went behind the
backs of the Policy Board and stabbed Denis in the back.
Denis Barry has been a hardworking President, who has
successfully established a new national scholastic chess tournament, the
U.S. Junior Chess Congress, worked to expand the U.S. Amateur from one or
two sites to four, and actively sought the hiring of a capable number two
person in the USCF office, a position George Filippone
Denis deserves far better than character assassination based on
mlsrepresentation, half truths, and innuendo.
How reliable is Fred's letter? It is significant that Fred,
praising the 5-1 PB recent FIDE decision, strongly condemned by GM
Seirawan in the latest issue of Inside Chess, fails
to inform the Voting
Members that the PB overruled our FIDE Delegation, Fan Adams resigned as
FIDE Delegate in protest, and the decision led to FIDE breaking its own
rules and reelecting Campomanes as President.
We call upon Fred to resign immediately the office he has
Harold J. Winston
(Chairman, USCF Bylaws Committee) IL
Helen E. Warren (Editor, The Chess Journalist) IL
Dan Burg (Chairman, USCF Regions & States Committee) MI
Helen, Hinshaw (Past Chair, USCF Regions &
States Committee) VA
James Eade (President, Northern California Chess
Tom Dorsch (USCF Region Xl Vice President) NCA
Carolyn, Withgitt (Chairperson, USCF Womens Committee) NCA
Garrett Scott (Chairman, USCF Fast Chess Committee) IL
Alina Markowski (CoChair, USCF Seniors Committee) SCA
Burt Hochberg (USCF Life Voting Member) NY
Tltles and states are
listed for identification purposes only
THE WORST-EVER USCF
Sam Sloan has initiated a discussion about the worst USCF
president since the late 1970s. Nominations have come flowing in.
Here is my handicap sheet:
Gary Sperling (1978-1981): By no means the worst
inherited a financial mess and unfit professional leadership. The USCF
tottered on dissolution. When he left the presidency three years
later, the organization was notably healthier. Since Mr. Sperling
would have gotten the discredit if the USCF had collapsed, he should get
some of the credit for saving the Federation.
On the other hand,
Mr. Sperling had an appetite for perks and power.
He politicized policy decisions, and his later tour as Treasurer
was an unhappy one. In a reelection bid in 1993, he was swamped by
(1981-1984): By no means the worst president. He was a
consolidator who can take credit for ushering in the modern day
Chess Life and for doing relatively little harm to the USCF
domestically. On the foreign front, he supported Florencio Campomanes
and led the struggle to destroy Gens una Sumus (the spirit that we are
all one and that chess should be free of politics). The mess in FIDE
has its origins in Mr. Redman's presidency.
To his credit, a
Chess Life editor who served under Mr. Redman
reported that the president seldom meddled politically in the magazine.
Doyle (1984-1987): By no means the worst president. I was
his editor. He hired me and eventually voted to fire me. Although
fought running battles for years on end, my view is that he shook up
the Federation for the better during his first year in office. His
darkest hour was agreeing to a Soviet demand to blacklist then U.S.
champion Lev Alburt in a proposed USA-USSR team
match that was to take
place in Atlantic City.
Mr. Doyle's undoing
as president was his age. He was only 26 upon
acceding to power, and he later presided over the eventual dissolution
of the best overall office team in USCF history. (The executive
director during that period would constitute an exception to this
description.) Several of the people in executive positions left for
what invariably turned out to be far greener pastures -- a damning
indictment of Policy Board management.
If Mr. Doyle had
been 36 when elected, he might have been a great
(1987-1990): The worst. A real Old Guard doozie.
During his presidency, a time of economic uplift, the USCF did
worse than stagnate. It declined. For months on end, regular
memberships plummeted, and merchandise sales were actually lower than
earlier. He ran huge
budget deficits. During his presidency, the
Treasurer initiated proceedings for a possible bankruptcy filing.
No president before
or since had greater control over his Policy
Board. In three years, Mr. Winston lost precisely one important vote
(the result was later reversed). Yet it was his control over the Board,
which represented total politicization of decision-making,
that led to a
partial repudiation of the Old Guard in 1990.
A specific example
of how Mr. Winston did business was the by now
infamous vote rejecting an 800 sales number. The proposal came from
Board dissident GM Lev Alburt, and it was rejected
6-1. Mr. Winston and
others argued that New Windsor would be under phone siege; there would
be too much contact with the membership and, presumably, the outside
world. Later, when GM Alburt left the Board,
the Old Guard adopted
the idea (first proposed in by GM Larry Evans in 1978)! In the
meantime the USCF lost hundreds of thousands of dollars.
Mr. Winston rammed
through a motion banning tape recordings of open
meetings, which was reversed after it was exposed in a Delegates
Newsletter issued by Friends of the USCF, an organization formed
during his presidency.
GM Max Dlugy (1990-1993): This outsider triumphed over Old
Harry Sabine by 238-93. An advocate of OMOV, GM Dlugy
appeared to have
a narrow majority on the Board. Appearances were deceiving. IM
Donaldson, who had made specific promises to change our FIDE team,
reversed himself completely. My belief is that he sought out Mr.
Winston and later Jerry Hanken as father figures;
his reward was to
become almost permanent captain of America's olympic
Still, the first
year of the Dlugy presidency was a successful one.
Memberships and sales improved, and such reforms as permitting the
executive director a voice on the Board and attempting to limit
documents listed as classified, were instituted.
GM Dlugy's final two years were marked by failure. In
Hanken narrowly defeated insurgent David Mehler by 16 votes. OMOV was
dead for the duration, and Mr. Hanken organized a
narrow Board majority
around his massive bearded figure.
(1993-1996): It was during Mr. Barry's watch that the
Crisis of the Old Order could no longer be contained. Old Guardists
fell out among themselves, and for the first time, several of these
people sought out the Friends of the USCF as an ally in close political
races. The infighting became so vicious that at one Policy Board
meeting, Jerry Hanken threatened to kill President
Barry. As he made
a move toward the smaller, though tough New Jerseyite,
quite literally lost his pants. What had the makings of pathos and,
arguendo, multiple hernias and heart attacks
degenerated into bathos.
OMOV was on its
I believe that Mr.
Barry tried to reform the USCF, but he was too
cautious to take the advice
of the Friends and too decent to play along
completely with his Old Guard buddies. Without an encompassing vision,
he ran a halfway house administration.
(1996-1999): His administration, which has been rocked
by financial scandals and scarred by unfulfilled hopes, still has a
year to run. I will forego further comment except to say that Sam
Sloan was right that he is by no means the worst president.