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  1. #1
    CC FIDE Master
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    What's missing? Meet the cast...

    What's missing from this dynamic leadership team?

    ACF Executive
    President Gary Wastell (VIC)
    Age: 65ish Rating: 1961

    I actually have great respect for Gary, he is a tireless worker for chess. The issue is that he's in the wrong position. He is a wonderfully hard worker and very detail focused, but not a leader. He smiles at everyone and abstains from all votes, and thinks that he is being political. Really he's just getting nothing done - because people tend to naturally follow the Pres....and if he's not making any decisions then nobody is.

    Deputy President Bill Gletsos (NSW)
    Age: 55 Rating: 1853

    A control freak and a devilishly detail oriented person. He is very hard to have a conversation with because he is loud and obnoxiously pedantic. He's repeatedly told me that the ratings on AusChess.Tornelo.com aren't the ACF ratings because Stephen Jablon's rating is wrong...he picks on the one tiny detail and ignores the 14,000 ratings that ARE correct. He'll probably rant about this post because I've said he's 55 when he's still 54 for another two weeks. I guess a good thing for a mathematician. Hard to find anyone who is less liked in the Australian chess scene.

    Vice President Denis Jessop (ACT)
    Age: 76 Rating: 1480

    A former constitutional lawyer with a passion for bike riding. Again just loves the details in words. Very conservative, but generally a nice guy. Don't get him to write a motion for you (much less a report!) -- it will take a month and be 6 pages long, thankfully he no longer charges per word!

    Vice President Kevin Bonham (TAS)
    Age: 39 Rating: 1881

    The baby of the group...this year was awarded the Chess Administrator of the Year, ostensibly for "being around long enough". He's now part of the club. He abstains on all matters relating to me because from time to time he does some work for me running chess comps (and does a very good job too). He's an expert (and PhD) in snails - one of the best in the country, and undoubtedly a very smart guy.

    He has single-handedly kept the TCA going for the last 10 or 20 years...which comprises 2.5 chess clubs, between 30-70 "active" players (although only 3 on the last list with any games rated) and a whopping 9 with "very reliable" ratings (half the number of 2003 "very reliable" players). A total of 148 players have been added to the ACF master file for TAS since 2003 - I don't doubt that Kevin would agree that at least half of those are juniors who've come from non-ACF schools events.

    Secretary Tom Accola (NSW)
    Age: 74 Rating: 920

    I can't say much about Tom, in my 20 years on the chess scene I've never met the guy. Judging by his rating he's probably new to chess.

    Treasurer Norm Greenwood
    Age: 79 Rating: 1530

    I think a former accountant or equally boring financial detail person. Just a few months ago I received an invoice from him from a 2003 event (that's about Norm's usual pace). During most of the last ACF meeting I attended Norm was quietly snoring at his table (which was impressive because Bill was talking at the top of his rather loud voice!).

  2. #2
    CC Grandmaster Basil's Avatar
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    The tenor of your post is disrespectful. I can only assume you intended this.

    Incidentally, I'm not entirely sure about the need to publish people's ages and the law applying to same; but importantly I doubt neither are you, such is your proven scant regard for envelope-pushing in just about everything to which you turn your mind.

    IMHO, what precedes is just another reason as to why you should never be let anywhere near the executive of the national organisation.
    Last edited by Basil; 23-03-2011 at 01:19 PM.
    There is no cure for leftism. Its infestation of the host mostly diminishes with age except in the most rabid of specimens.

  3. #3
    CC Grandmaster road runner's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ChessGuru
    Hard to find anyone who is less liked in the Australian chess scene.
    Oh I don't know if it would be that hard.
    meep meep

  4. #4
    CC Grandmaster Denis_Jessop's Avatar
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    The short answer to ChessGuru's question is:

    "An accurate description of the team members".

    DJ

    PS as a lawyer I tried to make this answer longer but words fail me
    ...I don't want to go among mad people Alice remarked, "Oh, you can't help that," said the Cat: we're all mad here. I am mad. You're mad." "How do you know I'm mad?" said Alice. "You must be," said the Cat ,"or you wouldn't have come here."

  5. #5
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    For some reason Average age of the ACF executives reminds me of the Chinese Communist Party Commitee or Russian Politburo of the 1970's...but the Russian and Chinese governments have become considerably younger recently.
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  6. #6
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    Great answers!

    Businesses around the world spend millions of millions of dollars to try and get the perfect balance of complementary strengths on a team. I'm being serious.... what strengths do we have and what's missing?

    It's interesting to start looking at THEMES of thought...

    Cap'n Underwear: immediately see the negative, then jumps to look for a rule, a law somewhere that might mean that I shouldn't have written the post. Obviously interested in the details (of ages) and appalled at my disrespect for the rule of law.

    Baron: different approach...straight away draws some big picture comparisons. Sees a broad theme.

    Jessop: light jest with witty humor. Young at heart.

    If this were a chess position Underwear would glance at it and say "Bb3 is a bad move, it's not in the book" while Baron would say "This reminds me of a Karpov game from 1985"...Jessop would ask what's the difference between a road-construction worker and a grandmaster.

  7. #7
    CC Grandmaster Basil's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ChessGuru
    Cap'n Underwear: immediately see the negative
    Wrong. Underwear immediately reads the piece as a whole, then concludes the negative, which it clearly is. And cheap. And loaded.

    Quote Originally Posted by ChessGuru
    then jumps to look for a rule
    Wrong. Underwear finds it odd that people's ages are posted - I can't recall anything like it in the 10 years I have been associated with chess administration. Then Underwear opines that the oddness is probably to do with issues relating first to privacy, and then to respect.

    You are gauche. You lead with your feet. You have no class. From there it gets worse.
    Last edited by Basil; 23-03-2011 at 07:59 PM.
    There is no cure for leftism. Its infestation of the host mostly diminishes with age except in the most rabid of specimens.

  8. #8
    CC Grandmaster Denis_Jessop's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MichaelBaron
    For some reason Average age of the ACF executives reminds me of the Chinese Communist Party Commitee or Russian Politburo of the 1970's...but the Russian and Chinese governments have become considerably younger recently.
    I note your point though it's restriction to communist parties is a bit obscure. For example, Konrad Adenauer was President of the Federal Republic of Germany at the age of 90 and US Supreme Court Judges hold office for life. Numerical age is of little consequence - it's one's physical and psychological condition that counts, that being a matter of fortune among other things. David has perhaps unwittingly pointed that out in referring to my passion for cycling (among other things that he doesn't mention). How many people are fortunate enough to be able to cycle quite vigorously at the age of 75 and enjoy it? In my case, I'm also a member of the metaphorical Lance Armstrong Club.

    DJ
    ...I don't want to go among mad people Alice remarked, "Oh, you can't help that," said the Cat: we're all mad here. I am mad. You're mad." "How do you know I'm mad?" said Alice. "You must be," said the Cat ,"or you wouldn't have come here."

  9. #9
    CC Grandmaster antichrist's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Captain Underpants
    The tenor of your post is disrespectful. I can only assume you intended this.

    Incidentally, I'm not entirely sure about the need to publish people's ages and the law applying to same; but importantly I doubt neither are you, such is your proven scant regard for envelope-pushing in just about everything to which you turn your mind.

    IMHO, what precedes is just another reason as to why you should never be let anywhere near the executive of the national organisation.
    Chessgurus post could be read that way, but that is too narrow and simplistic assessment. There is a reason for stating ages, that is that do not expect anything new or dynamic from such aged persons. If KB has not shown such dynamism to date then dont expect it in future.

    Of course they are all very respectable and hard working, lengthy period volunteers. The olders ones should have been replaced by now just to give them a break. We are lucky that they have hung around. And I hope they get free admission to any comps they enter.

    But Denis' position age does not matter as he is "only" legal adviser. Not much involved and probably appreciates the occasional question thrown at him. It is good that he can offer something to society that is appreciated and the society is lucky to have a solicitor as adviser.

    In a manner KB's situation, whether he deservedly or otherwise sees possible conflicts of interest and so obstains from acting, is far from ideal. I have come across a serious situation where this occurred that I cannot comment upon here unless he specificially permits me to.


    But of course it is easy for outsiders to comment and criticise if we do not offer ourselves for appointment.

    Chessguru, for better or worse you have people who don't appreciate you, you must criticially exam what they are on about and if justified. If they are so then you must prove otherwise for them to accept your ideas etc.

    BTW other keen bike riders are G Gardner who does tours, the late Ernest Dorn a professional rider in his day, and myself who usually does a few hours a week in winter.

    carry on

    The Serial Pest

  10. #10
    CC Grandmaster antichrist's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Denis_Jessop
    I note your point though it's restriction to communist parties is a bit obscure. For example, Konrad Adenauer was President of the Federal Republic of Germany at the age of 90 and US Supreme Court Judges hold office for life. Numerical age is of little consequence - it's one's physical and psychological condition that counts, that being a matter of fortune among other things. David has perhaps unwittingly pointed that out in referring to my passion for cycling (among other things that he doesn't mention). How many people are fortunate enough to be able to cycle quite vigorously at the age of 75 and enjoy it? In my case, I'm also a member of the metaphorical Lance Armstrong Club.

    DJ
    Denis, a few years back I had to chase up an old accountant I had done business with in about 1985. We he is about 85 years old, still practising accounting and cycles everywhere, and all the healthier for it.

  11. #11
    Monster of the deep Kevin Bonham's Avatar
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    Quick comment re Tas ratings: the figures above portray the Tassie rated chess scene, modest as it currently is, in a somewhat unrepresentative light because the March ratings period is generally the quietest on our calendar. Our calendar usually includes various club events on a game/week basis and about five weekenders. None of the club events finish in the March period and the only weekender normally held in it was cancelled but is likely to be held later in the year. Thus:

    March 2011 ratings list: 3 players with rated games, 9 with !! ratings
    Dec 2010 ratings list: 28 players with rated games, 16 with !! ratings

    7 players dropped from !! to ! in the March period but at least four of these will have main-list rated games included in the June period and will presumably return to !!-hood.

    As for what's missing from the cast, let me start with any critic willing to put their hand up for some actual work and be part of it. With the exception of David very nominally running for President in 2005 there's been no contested ACF Exec election in my entire time on Council (11 years now). Some people say they think the ACF needs to change but they're not willing to put themselves up and lobby the state associations to support their candidacy. I've been trying to encourage trolls from the other place to run against me for years and none of them have got the bottle to do it!

    Partly the age profile of the ACF represents an issue with voluntary societies generally. People willing to put serious work into voluntary societies are often retired, unless they are independently wealthy, underemployed and happy to stay that way, etc. Some people have approached me about sometime taking on the top job and I've said it will probably have to wait a long time because there are actually some limits to how much time I can voluntarily devote to chess at my age!

    As for the medal, I think if it was just a long-seatwarming thing I would have been waiting a lot longer for it. (I believe I'm the youngest to be awarded that one by some margin.) And I don't think the credit for keeping the TCA going over the last 15 years (as long as I have been involved) is anywhere near all mine. For the first half of that David Christian and I were the main "engine room" on a roughly equal basis and in the last half there have been many who have pitched in.
    Last edited by Kevin Bonham; 23-03-2011 at 08:29 PM.

  12. #12
    Monster of the deep Kevin Bonham's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by antichrist
    In a manner KB's situation, whether he deservedly or otherwise sees possible conflicts of interest and so obstains from acting, is far from ideal. I have come across a serious situation where this occurred that I cannot comment upon here unless he specificially permits me to.
    I believe that AC is actually referring to my role as moderator of this site. Generally I do not moderate material by or about ChessGuru because of the employment COI mentioned. I may make exceptions in cases that are absolute no-brainers (eg provisionally deleting clearly ultra-defamatory posts for the other mods to look at them). Recently AC sent me a ridiculous 4 PMs in 44 minutes buzzing me about whether or not a post dragged from the other place to here (firstly by him with edits, then by the original author verbatim) was defamatory. I told him to buzz off and discuss it with another mod who didn't have a COI.

    Contrary to AC's suggestion that this created a serious problem, it turned out that the matter was handled smoothly by Rincewind's deletion of the posts on the grounds that they were a pointless dragging of a discussion being posted elsewhere - it wasn't even necessary for the legal situation to be considered.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Denis_Jessop
    I note your point though it's restriction to communist parties is a bit obscure. For example, Konrad Adenauer was President of the Federal Republic of Germany at the age of 90 and US Supreme Court Judges hold office for life. Numerical age is of little consequence - it's one's physical and psychological condition that counts, that being a matter of fortune among other things. David has perhaps unwittingly pointed that out in referring to my passion for cycling (among other things that he doesn't mention). How many people are fortunate enough to be able to cycle quite vigorously at the age of 75 and enjoy it? In my case, I'm also a member of the metaphorical Lance Armstrong Club.

    DJ
    Denis, with your examples - you have outstanding individulas performing outstanding jobs. In Cases of China and Russia - the entire management teams were in their 70's/80's. Where I agree with David is that all age groups should be represented. Having someone in the 70s as part of a management team is a great asset. But having 4 out of the 7 people listed in the 70's may not be best. It is not just about being strong enough to do the work, it is also about getting people from other generations to contribute their ideas and therefore, deliver greater diversity! This is the only reason ACF reminds me of the Chinese/Russian leaders .
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  14. #14
    Monster of the deep Kevin Bonham's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MichaelBaron
    It is not just about being strong enough to do the work, it is also about getting people from other generations to contribute their ideas and therefore, deliver greater diversity!
    If it was just getting people to contribute ideas it would be so much easier! It's also about getting people to contribute time and work. Most of the ACF's most vehement critics (CG excepted of course) are among the laziest people on earth. The exceptions that prove the rule would rather be doing the same thing for pay.
    Last edited by Kevin Bonham; 23-03-2011 at 09:31 PM.

  15. #15
    CC Grandmaster antichrist's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kevin Bonham
    I believe that AC is actually referring to my role as moderator of this site. Recently AC sent me a ridiculous 4 PMs in 44 minutes buzzing me about whether or not a post dragged from the other place to here (firstly by him with edits, then by the original author verbatim) was defamatory. I told him to buzz off and discuss it with another mod who didn't have a COI.

    Contrary to AC's suggestion that this created a serious problem, it turned out that the matter was handled smoothly by Rincewind's deletion of the posts on the grounds that they were a pointless dragging of a discussion being posted elsewhere - it wasn't even necessary for the legal situation to be considered.
    Considering the deletion by RW was about 8 hours later, sufficient time for possible defamation to be much more serious (consult Denis on this), it was about chess issues in Australia and therefore should be concerned with on this board, regardless if aired on another quite minority board. As I had deleted out the libellous parts my original post it could have stood for the benefit of the board and chess in Australia. If not then we are forced to go occasionally to minority board to discuss real issues of chess in Australia. An unnecessarily situation and the dumbing down of this site.

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