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  1. #106
    Monster of the deep Kevin Bonham's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Keong Ang
    This loose interpretation by the current zone president (Brian!) would eventually need to be tidied up.
    Not a loose interpretation at all in my view.

    Since the OCC is now the controlling body that organises all Oceania zone events,
    Really? It was accepted by FIDE as an affiliated organisation to advance the interests of chess in the region. There was nothing in the FIDE decision (which was incredibly brief) to say that it was being accepted as a controlling organisation. If the Oceania Zone President chooses to organise all the events he would normally organise through it then that is his prerogative. But it doesn't follow automatically.

    Now, if the OCC president really wanted to get nasty he could try to ban us from participating in Oceania events at all unless we joined the OCC. I can think of no end of similarly nasty responses we could employ if it ever came to that, so hopefully no-one is going to be so silly.

    Quote Originally Posted by Denis_Jessop
    It says little for an organisation if its President is so fearful of criticism that he has to appoint all his advisors.
    I doubt he fears criticism anywhere near as much as he fears working out an adequate electoral procedure.

    I'm not necessarily opposed to the OCC Pres appointing officebearers provided there is a mechanism for the PB to easily sack any found to be incompetent, insufficiently active or corrupt.

  2. #107
    Monster of the deep Kevin Bonham's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Keong Ang
    Why do you consider this totalitarian? I always thought our countries are democracies and not totalitarian states. We elect our representatives, who then choose a leader, who then appoints his/her own cabinet(executive).
    In Australia the leader indeed appoints their own cabinet but the cabinet is drawn from elected representatives, or at least in the case of Senate vacancies from representatives appointed by parties that received popular support. In the case of the OCC the officeholders do not need to be representatives. The EB can be anyone. A closer analogy is the US presidential system.

  3. #108
    Illuminati Bill Gletsos's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kevin Bonham
    In Australia the leader indeed appoints their own cabinet but the cabinet is drawn from elected representatives, or at least in the case of Senate vacancies from representatives appointed by parties that received popular support. In the case of the OCC the officeholders do not need to be representatives. The EB can be anyone. A closer analogy is the US presidential system.
    Even then many Presidential appointments require US Senate confirmation.
    The Force can have a strong influence on the weak-minded.

  4. #109
    Monster of the deep Kevin Bonham's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bill Gletsos
    Even then many Presidential appointments require US Senate confirmation.
    Yes and also the President can be impeached.

  5. #110
    CC FIDE Master Keong Ang's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kevin Bonham
    Not a loose interpretation at all in my view.

    Really? It was accepted by FIDE as an affiliated organisation to advance the interests of chess in the region. There was nothing in the FIDE decision (which was incredibly brief) to say that it was being accepted as a controlling organisation. If the Oceania Zone President chooses to organise all the events he would normally organise through it then that is his prerogative. But it doesn't follow automatically.
    More like the Oceania zone president organises everything, the OCC is just a formality.

    As you say, the OCC was accepted by FIDE to advance the interests of chess in the region. While incredibly brief, it obliges national federations in zone3.6 to cooperate with and support the OCC actively. FIDE Handbook Chapter 2, clause 2.4 "...obliged to support FIDE actively in its chess activities."
    Since FIDE has acknowledged that OCC advances the interests of chess in the region through affiliation, the OCC has become the body that FIDE works with for zone wide activity.

    Of course, you are correct in saying that the zonal president can choose to organise events through the OCC or unilaterally. The frustrating reality in practice is the zone president is still free to organise whatever he likes and treat the OCC like a formality. All he has to do is stage the event in a country that does not acknowledge the OCC. Just look at what's going to happen during June in Sydney!
    Quote Originally Posted by Kevin Bonham
    Now, if the OCC president really wanted to get nasty he could try to ban us from participating in Oceania events at all unless we joined the OCC. I can think of no end of similarly nasty responses we could employ if it ever came to that, so hopefully no-one is going to be so silly.
    I think the present problem is that he allows non Oceania players to fully participate in Oceania events (i.e. able to win the championship). Also there are championship regulations put into place that are not synced with FIDE.

    The trouble could potentially come from situations where AUS players are allowed into OCC events, but then be denied IM/FM title due to the AUS not being a non-member federation. How would the ACF explain the situation to the players then?
    Quote Originally Posted by Kevin Bonham
    I doubt he fears criticism anywhere near as much as he fears working out an adequate electoral procedure.

    I'm not necessarily opposed to the OCC Pres appointing officebearers provided there is a mechanism for the PB to easily sack any found to be incompetent, insufficiently active or corrupt.
    The only officebearer that the PB would really need to easily sack if found to be incompetent, insufficiently active or corrupt is the OCC president. That is impossible to accomplish within the OCC due to the person having to be the same as the Oceania zone president. Any competent, active or not corrupt president would sort out the other officebearers much more efficiently than the PB ever could. The formula is simple, get the correct person to be the zone president during the AsianCF general assembly.

    Whatever we say or agree on here carries no weight. During the OCC meeting, observers like me may as well be invisible. You need to be a delegate of a member federation to have any influence. What I observe (IMHO) is that an ACF delegate would be very useful to counter the power of the zone president. Instead what we have is a situation where the most important federation in the zone has abstained from being involved in any decisions that could affect the entire zone in the future.
    "The best way to get a bad law repealed is to enforce it strictly." Abraham Lincoln

  6. #111
    CC Grandmaster Denis_Jessop's Avatar
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    The argument that the delegates of other federations were happy with 6.3 because it prevented Australian dominance is fatally flawed. Were the ACF to be a member it would have only one vote and so be in no position to dominate any election for offices.

    The comparison with the Asian Federation's ticket system is also fallacious. There a person standing for election as Asian President does so on a combined ticket presented at least 3 months before the election. Thus the President and the office bearers are elected together. Under 6.3 the office bearers are not elected but are unilateral appointments. This is a totalitarian, totally undemocratic, process.

    Analogies with Cabinet appointments are of little merit. For example, in Australia a Cabinet Minister cannot hold office for more than three months unless he is or becomes a senator or a member of the house of representatives (Constitution s.64). Thus cabinet ministers are drawn from those elected by the people or in rare cases appointed by a State Parliament to fill a casual Senate vacancy (Constitution s.15). The US position depends on a strict view of the separation of powers but even there, as Bill has pointed out, executive appointments require Senate approval.

    DJ
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    In Arsène we Trust!

  7. #112
    Monster of the deep Kevin Bonham's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Keong Ang
    As you say, the OCC was accepted by FIDE to advance the interests of chess in the region. While incredibly brief, it obliges national federations in zone3.6 to cooperate with and support the OCC actively. FIDE Handbook Chapter 2, clause 2.4 "...obliged to support FIDE actively in its chess activities."
    That's just a "motherhood statement" that could be interpreted to mean pretty much anything. In context it appears as a lead-in to a requirement to supply certain information annually.

    Since FIDE has acknowledged that OCC advances the interests of chess in the region through affiliation, the OCC has become the body that FIDE works with for zone wide activity.
    Doesn't necessarily follow. And indeed there is nothing to say that FIDE may accept only one such body in any area.

    The trouble could potentially come from situations where AUS players are allowed into OCC events, but then be denied IM/FM title due to the AUS not being a non-member federation. How would the ACF explain the situation to the players then?
    In terms of the titles the OCC proposes to award additional to the existing Zonal Championships, I think the ACF will actually be very concerned if such titles get off the ground and may well discourage its players from seeking them in the first place. The title system is compromised enough here as it is.

    The only officebearer that the PB would really need to easily sack if found to be incompetent, insufficiently active or corrupt is the OCC president.
    Perhaps, but as you note that isn't possible. Better therefore to be able to sack some officebearers than none at all.

    What I observe (IMHO) is that an ACF delegate would be very useful to counter the power of the zone president. Instead what we have is a situation where the most important federation in the zone has abstained from being involved in any decisions that could affect the entire zone in the future.
    We wouldn't be important though. On the PB we would be just one vote out of many carrying no more power than any small Pacific nation that's accepted. That is another problem with the OCC. If one nation has three-quarters of a region's chess activity then it is democratic that that nation receives some extra voting power. Not necessarily proportional (otherwise the others would have no say) but one nation, one vote is a joke in this particular region.

  8. #113
    CC FIDE Master Keong Ang's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Denis_Jessop
    The argument that the delegates of other federations were happy with 6.3 because it prevented Australian dominance is fatally flawed. Were the ACF to be a member it would have only one vote and so be in no position to dominate any election for offices.

    The comparison with the Asian Federation's ticket system is also fallacious. There a person standing for election as Asian President does so on a combined ticket presented at least 3 months before the election. Thus the President and the office bearers are elected together. Under 6.3 the office bearers are not elected but are unilateral appointments. This is a totalitarian, totally undemocratic, process.

    Analogies with Cabinet appointments are of little merit. For example, in Australia a Cabinet Minister cannot hold office for more than three months unless he is or becomes a senator or a member of the house of representatives (Constitution s.64). Thus cabinet ministers are drawn from those elected by the people or in rare cases appointed by a State Parliament to fill a casual Senate vacancy (Constitution s.15). The US position depends on a strict view of the separation of powers but even there, as Bill has pointed out, executive appointments require Senate approval.

    DJ
    How does somebody become Oceania zone president anyway?

    AsianCF and FIDE statutes state that normally it is the choice of the majority of the federations in the zone that is expressed during the general assembly. I have still not found where the qualification requirements for the position (eg. belonging to a federation within the zone etc.) are listed and doubt it even exists.

    With AUS having only a single vote in FIDE and AsianCF, hasn't the Oceania zone president always been AUS?

    Despite all the officiousness of the OCC, it is practically a body run by volunteers. As is typical of most volunteer run organisations, elections to executive positions are really "conscriptions". National federations are really run by volunteers (conscripts?) who send one of their number as a delegate to other organisations like OCC. Is it any surprise that the statutes reflect a totally hands off and let somebody else do the job preference? The delegates to the PB would rather leave all the work for the unfortunate fellow who is president. Why bother to elect officers to the EB? It is much more preferable to escape back to some remote region of Oceania and leave the president to conscript the EB from whoever he can snare.

    If I'm not mistaken this is a similar situation the ACF faces. I gather from this forum the typical complaints and rants about all the shortcomings of the ACF. Everybody complains, moans, gripes and rants about how things could be run better. You'd think that all incumbents would be rolled if only a general meeting came around. However when it is time for elections, nobody actually wants to do the thankless tasks we do! Where are the candidates? Instead, the same incumbents are re-conscripted to face another term of complaints, moans, gripes and rants...
    "The best way to get a bad law repealed is to enforce it strictly." Abraham Lincoln

  9. #114
    CC FIDE Master Keong Ang's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kevin Bonham
    In terms of the titles the OCC proposes to award additional to the existing Zonal Championships, I think the ACF will actually be very concerned if such titles get off the ground and may well discourage its players from seeking them in the first place. The title system is compromised enough here as it is.
    If they are FIDE titles like GM, IM, FM, there's nothing much any very concerned national federation can do.
    What are the chances of success for a national federation like ACF in trying to discourage its players from seeking FIDE titles? If there was an Oceania youth age group championships where the under8 champion gets a FM title and under8 girl gets a WFM title, etc. etc., attempts to discourage players from competing would fail. A national federation cannot officially prevent its players from competing, eg. with a boycott, because it would be breaking FIDE regulations if it does so.

    We can have negative opinions toward soft titles being given. However, if it is a FIDE title, what options would be available to us to do something about it? If a FIDE unrated 8 year old of around 1200 strength wins the FM title, every federation in the world must recognise it and duly enter that kid as a FM titled player with an automatic rating floor applicable for an unrated FM (2200??) whenever he enters a FIDE rated tournament.
    Quote Originally Posted by Kevin Bonham
    Perhaps, but as you note that isn't possible. Better therefore to be able to sack some officebearers than none at all.
    I think the general feeling was that the federation delegates do not even want to consider the possibility of sacking any officebearers. The idea being, you cannot incur liability if you do not have authority. The more important consideration is the need to appoint a replacement if an officebearer is sacked. Nobody on the PB wanted that responsibility and preferred to let the president fill the EB and essentially live with the consequences of any stuff ups his appointees make. The PB is not going to allow the president any opportunity to blame it for tying his hands.
    Quote Originally Posted by Kevin Bonham
    We wouldn't be important though. On the PB we would be just one vote out of many carrying no more power than any small Pacific nation that's accepted. That is another problem with the OCC. If one nation has three-quarters of a region's chess activity then it is democratic that that nation receives some extra voting power. Not necessarily proportional (otherwise the others would have no say) but one nation, one vote is a joke in this particular region.
    Doesn't AUS only have one vote at FIDE too?
    We'd like to think our once vote carries the same weight as the Russian vote or the USA vote.
    What you're suggesting is going to be controversial. What do you mean by "chess activity"? "Gross chess activity" or "per capita chess activity"?
    Somebody could argue that a national federation that is effective and achieves nearly 100% chess activity in their nation's population should be more influential in the OCC than a federation that only gets less than 1% of their population to play chess. Why should a federation that "failed" on a per-capita basis get more voting power than a federation that "succeeded"?
    If gross chess activity were the measure, then a precedent for the AsianCF could have been set where a vote each from India and China (zones on their own!) would constitute a majority!
    You could continue on and debate over what constitutes "chess activity"? Number of kids learning how to play chess? Number of active players on the FIDE rating list? Number of people who are members of the federation?

    What I observed is that what really happens at the OCC is that the statutes and voting status are rather irrelevant. Real power resides in whoever is willing to contribute resources into chess. Or rather, whose delegate is around to make sure resources are not being contributed. The OCC would be as effective as the president is. Right now it is mainly ozzie resources that the rest of Oceania freeloads on because the ozzie delegate wasn't present to prevent it. That's what I mean by AUS "veto" power. At the end of the day, the OCC is just another body that organises chess events and the reality is that nobody actually wants the burden of doing it.
    "The best way to get a bad law repealed is to enforce it strictly." Abraham Lincoln

  10. #115
    Monster of the deep Kevin Bonham's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Keong Ang
    We can have negative opinions toward soft titles being given. However, if it is a FIDE title, what options would be available to us to do something about it?
    I can think of a few but the first port of call I'd think would be a letter to FIDE asking that they again review title entitlements in our region.

    I think the general feeling was that the federation delegates do not even want to consider the possibility of sacking any officebearers. The idea being, you cannot incur liability if you do not have authority.
    Using your authority to remove your own authority doesn't work unless you make it irreversible. Even if the PB changes the statutes so that the EB is appointed by the President then the PB still has the right to change them back to give itself the right to appoint the EB itself or sack EB members itself. Thus, it is not correct to say the EB can't be responsible for persistent misconduct by officebearers (should that ever occur).

    What you're suggesting is going to be controversial. What do you mean by "chess activity"? "Gross chess activity" or "per capita chess activity"?
    The former.

    Somebody could argue that a national federation that is effective and achieves nearly 100% chess activity in their nation's population should be more influential in the OCC than a federation that only gets less than 1% of their population to play chess.
    I don't see why.

    If gross chess activity were the measure, then a precedent for the AsianCF could have been set where a vote each from India and China (zones on their own!) would constitute a majority!
    Hence my comment "Not necessarily proportional (otherwise the others would have no say)".

    Right now it is mainly ozzie resources that the rest of Oceania freeloads on because the ozzie delegate wasn't present to prevent it.
    What Ozzie resources are being freeloaded on? We're not paying them any money after all.

    That's what I mean by AUS "veto" power.
    Except there is no veto power, we would just be one vote. Maybe we should join on the condition that we are granted a real veto right comparable to the veto rights of five nations on the UN Security Council.

  11. #116
    CC Grandmaster Denis_Jessop's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Keong Ang
    How does somebody become Oceania zone president anyway?

    AsianCF and FIDE statutes state that normally it is the choice of the majority of the federations in the zone that is expressed during the general assembly. I have still not found where the qualification requirements for the position (eg. belonging to a federation within the zone etc.) are listed and doubt it even exists.

    With AUS having only a single vote in FIDE and AsianCF, hasn't the Oceania zone president always been AUS?

    Despite all the officiousness of the OCC, it is practically a body run by volunteers. As is typical of most volunteer run organisations, elections to executive positions are really "conscriptions". National federations are really run by volunteers (conscripts?) who send one of their number as a delegate to other organisations like OCC. Is it any surprise that the statutes reflect a totally hands off and let somebody else do the job preference? The delegates to the PB would rather leave all the work for the unfortunate fellow who is president. Why bother to elect officers to the EB? It is much more preferable to escape back to some remote region of Oceania and leave the president to conscript the EB from whoever he can snare.

    If I'm not mistaken this is a similar situation the ACF faces. I gather from this forum the typical complaints and rants about all the shortcomings of the ACF. Everybody complains, moans, gripes and rants about how things could be run better. You'd think that all incumbents would be rolled if only a general meeting came around. However when it is time for elections, nobody actually wants to do the thankless tasks we do! Where are the candidates? Instead, the same incumbents are re-conscripted to face another term of complaints, moans, gripes and rants...
    The Statutes of the Asian Chess Federation mention the election of Zonal Presidents though they do not appear to have any provisions about qualification for election nor do they say, as far as I can see how often Zonal Presidenial elections are to be held or what the Zonal President's tenure of office is. The election provision is:

    8. THE ZONAL PRESIDENTS
    8.1 When electing a Zonal President, the CA - apart from exceptional cases - shall agree in principle with the opinion expressed in the CA by the majority of the representatives of the members belonging to the zone, or, if the zone consists of one member only, take into consideration the opinion expressed by the representative of this member. He shall be responsible for the Zonal Championships and coordination of chess activities in his Zone.
    That seems to be the only mention of Zone Presidents except that they are members of the Asian Chess Federation Executive Board. You'll note that cl 8 assumes that there will be elections - it does not provide for them. Moreover the list of non-delegable items to be considered by the annual Continental Assembly meeting does not include elections of Zonal Presidents though it does include elections for the Asian Chess Federation President and his ticket.

    When it comes to detail the Asian Statutes are as bad as the OCC ones which isn't surprising as the OCC Statutes were cribbed from the Asian ones.

    There have been only 3 Oceania Zone Presidents - Graeme Gardiner, Gary Bekker and Il Duce. All are from Australia. But I am not aware how they came to be elected.

    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."

    In Arsène we Trust!

  12. #117
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    As the ACF isn't a member of the Oceania CC, why do both the Grand Prix links on the ACF website link to the Oceania GP, and none to the ACF GP?

  13. #118
    Illuminati Bill Gletsos's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Patrick Byrom
    As the ACF isn't a member of the Oceania CC, why do both the Grand Prix links on the ACF website link to the Oceania GP, and none to the ACF GP?
    Those links on the ACF webiste were pointing to the ACF GP but it would appear that Brian has changed the link at his website to point to the Oceania GP.
    The Force can have a strong influence on the weak-minded.

  14. #119
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brian_Jones
    As the President of FIDE Zone 3.6 (Oceania), it was my decision to operate through a formal organisation - the Oceania Chess Confederation (OCC) - with a bank account, statutes, ethical guidelines and regulations.

    New Zealand, Fiji, Guam, Palau, PNG and Solomon Islands are OCC members and have been represented at meetings which adopted the statutes and made other decisions.

    Australia has stayed aloof. It has not yet agreed to membership, has not sent anybody official to OCC meetings and has not yet submitted any formal proposals to change statutes or regulations.
    As a non-member, I would think the ACF has no standing, no right to propose changes to statutes or regulations.

    If someone in OCC understands, or is prepared to work with the ACF to obtain that understanding, that someone can propose to the OCC executive or a General Meeting to make the necessary changes.

    It might be that the OCC and ACF do not agree as to what changes are needed, but it seems to me that some questions mentioned here do need to be addresses.

    Without reference to OCC, these are the basic requirements as I understand them for Australia.

    • The organisation must have a statement of objectives.
    • It must be incorporated under relevant law. I'm assuming as a not-for-profit like the ACF, but there are other options such as "OCC Limited."
    • It must have a constitution. [Amongst many things, the constitution describes
      • How the organisation is governed
      • Governing committee members, their roles, their eligibility for membership, how they are elected and their tenure.
      • How other offices are established and their holders are chosen
      • How the constitution may be altered.
      • How to call meetings, maybe 14 days written notice posted by registered mail
      • When to have meetings such as AGM and SGMs.
      • What business may be conducted at meetings.
      • Who may become members
      • and so on. The WA government has forms and samples, I'm sure other states and countries have similar information.


    If the ACF feels its objectives are of no practical value - perhaps it thinks they are adequately met elsewhere, or sees problems with its constitution or even with some of the personnel (I'm thinking of Slipper and Thompson for the moment) then perhaps it should not join.
    John Summerfield

  15. #120
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kevin Bonham
    Actually that applies only once the minutes are confirmed by motion. Until then they are draft minutes.

    .
    As James Hardie Ltd just discovered, minutes are important.

    The article may vanish, so here is part of it:
    The year was 2001 when Meredith Hellicar and her fellow directors moved the James Hardie company offshore, leaving behind what they described as a "fully funded" compensation foundation that would provide "certainty" for victims of asbestos.

    In fact, it was short $1.5 billion and soon faced a bankruptcy.
    KERRY BREWSTER: The court rejected arguments by the directors that they had not approved the statement issued to the stock exchange. I
    The decision to approve the statement was recorded in the minutes.

    The directors asserted the minutes were wrong.

    The minutes were attested as correct at the next meeting.

    The High Court of Australia told them what my lawyer told me in the early 80s, when it's minuted and the minutes are confirmed, that is what happened.
    John Summerfield

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