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Old July 18th 06, 01:08 PM posted to rec.games.chess.computer,rec.games.chess.politics,rec.games.chess.misc,alt.chess
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Default Hanken more Fully Explains the OLM Title

Hanken more Fully Explains the OLM Title

Jerry Hanken called me at 7:00 AM this morning to continue our
conversation of last night. He says that I caught him as he was on the
way out the door when I called him to ask about the OLM Program and he
answered off the top of his head and that he was unaware of the thread
that was going on.

When Jerry hurriedly finished the previous conversation, he had said
that we should do some more research on this. Therefore, I apologize
that put this out on the Internet before Jerry had time to rethink
this.

Hanken now explains that in 1997 master players rated over 2300 were
upset because they were threatened with the loss of what they had come
to depend on, which was a floor of 2200 for their master titles. So
the board created the OLM title partially to offset the dropping of
the floors.

The OLM Title was the brainchild of Hanken himself, when he was the
Chairman of the Masters Affairs Committee. It was approved at a
meeting of the Policy Board at Arcadia, California in March 1997, with
a 7-0 vote in favor. Don Schultz, President, Bill Goichberg, Jim Eade
and Tom Dorsch all voted in favor.

Hanken included a provision that Original Life Masters were given a
floor of 2200, to protect players who had been rated over 2300 for
decades, but due to the ravages of old age, could see that their
ratings were soon going to fall below 2200.

This change was made because the previous norm system allowed the
anonymity of players who never achieved a 2200 rating in their careers
to become life masters. A crisis had arisen when Helen Warren refused
to allow these Life Masters who did not have a 2200 rating to play in
the US Masters tournament.

Just before the OLM Title was created, floors were dropped from 100
points to 200 points. This led to the creation of the Hanken Rules.
Under these rules, players who already had a floor of 2200 could get
the OLM Title merely by playing 300 games, regardless of whether they
won or lost the games. This change would not have been made had not
the delegates dropped the floors from 100 to 200.

This provision, which essentially enabled a player with a floor of
2200 to earn the Original Life Master Title simply by playing 300
games, even if he looses all the games, is a flaw or an anomaly in the
system. Nevertheless, that is the rule and therefore under the rules
Tanner is allowed to count all of his games played on a floor of 2200
towards his OLM Title. This gives him the 300 games.

This directly affected Robert Tanner because, for a period of 22
tournaments from May 22, 1994 until June 23, 1996 Tanner had a rating
of exactly 2200, never even one point more or one point less, because
he had once been over 2300.

The Rules for the OLM Title state that a player gets the title if he
plays 300 games rated 2200 or better. If they had just changed one
word, to say that you get the OLM Title for playing at a rating of
OVER 2200, then Tanner would not have qualified because his rating was
almost always exactly 2200.

Another very serious problem is that in 1991, Jim Meyer, the USCF
Technical Director, threw out all the records, both paper and
computer, and for that reason it is impossible check the records to
see how many games over 2200 players like Tanner had before 1991. Jim
Meyer was eventually fired for doing this. This is the reason why the
LMA only goes back to 1991.

In February 2006, Walter Brown and Mike Nolan, having finally gotten
the records from 1991 forward computerized went back and researched
these records and found that Tanner and several other players had
exceeded the 300 game limit years ago. Therefore, they were made OLMs
and their ratings raised to 2200 retroactively as far back as they
could go, which in the case of Tanner was 1994. That is why the rating
of Tanner now shows a sudden jump from 2103 to 2200;

This does not in any way imply that Robert Tanner, Mike Nolan or
Walter Brown did anything improper.

However, I still have an unanswered question about matches. Tanner
played several long matches.

In 1992, when Tanner had a real master rating, he played a match
against Milan Djiatlich, winning 7.5 to 1.5. Tanner gained 44 points
to 2248. Milan Djiatlich lost 50 points to 2061. Then, in November
1992, he played another ten game match against Milan Djiatlich, this
time winning by 8.5 - 1.5 Tanner's rating rose by 10 points from 2279
to 2289, and his opponent lost 13 points from 2022 to 2009.

In May 1994, Tanner played a match against Diane Bernard, rated 1822.
Tanner won 3-1. He did not lose any points but she gained 18 points to
1840. In October, 1994, he played a four game match against Paul G.
Cripe. Tanner lost all four games. His rating did not go down because
Tanner was on his floor of 2200, but his opponents rating went up from
2262 to 2301. In September, 1995, he played another match against Paul
G. Cripe which he lost by 4.5 to 1.5. As Tanner was floored, he lost
no points, but his opponent gained 29 points from 2233 to 2262.

Thus, Tanner played a total of 33 match games during the period when
he was rated 2200. He played 19 games against Milan Djiatlich, 10
against Paul Cripe and 4 against Diane Bernard. These 33 games were
used in the count for 300 games for the OLM Title.

I asked Jerry Hanken if he feels that these match games count under
the rules towards the 300 game requirement for the OLM Title. He
believes that they do not count. I am certain that if those 33 match
games are not counted then Tanner still does not have the 300 games
required for the OLM Title, even though all the games where he was on
a floor of 2200 are counted, unless there were games from before 1991
for which there are no longer any records..

Sam Sloan
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Old July 18th 06, 02:52 PM posted to rec.games.chess.computer,rec.games.chess.politics,rec.games.chess.misc,alt.chess
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Default Hanken more Fully Explains the OLM Title

I need to explain that it was actually mild mannered newspaper
reporter Eric Mark who first discovered that there was something fishy
about Tanner's rating when he actually played Tanner at the February
2006 US Amateur Team East Championship.

Eric Mark actually played Robert Tanner at that tournament. Eric Mark
won the game.

On the wall chart, Tanner's rating was 2101 but when Eric Mark checked
the MSA later he found that Tanner's rating had been raised to 2200.

As we now know, this was because Walter Brown and Mike Nolan had
suddenly "discovered" that Tanner should have been awarded the OLM
Title years before and therefore his rating was raised retroactively
to 2200.

Take a look at:
http://www.uschess.org/msa/XtblMain....09081-10495334

You will see that Tanner, number 723, lost to Eric Mark, number 614,
who was rated 1949.

Tanner played four games in this tournament against opponents
averaging 2016. Tanner scored 1.5-2.5, for a performance rating of
1916.

Eric Mark wrote several internet postings complaining about this, but
I did not notice them until yesterday.

Eric Mark has also pointed out that chess politicians Tim Redman and
Al Lawrence have had their ratings jacked up to 2000 after they fell
into the 1900s.

Is there any USCF rule that allows the ratings of chess politicians to
be raised?

Take a look at:
http://www.uschess.org/msa/MbrDtlTnmtHst.php?10346061
http://www.uschess.org/msa/MbrDtlTnmtHst.php?10367158

I have not decided whether, if I am elected, I will instruct my new
underlings to raise my rating to 2200, 2300 or 2400. Which sounds
better?

Sam Sloan
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Old July 18th 06, 03:17 PM posted to rec.games.chess.computer,rec.games.chess.politics,rec.games.chess.misc,alt.chess
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Default Hanken more Fully Explains the OLM Title


Sam Sloan wrote:
I need to explain that it was actually mild mannered newspaper
reporter Eric Mark who first discovered that there was something fishy
about Tanner's rating when he actually played Tanner at the February
2006 US Amateur Team East Championship.

Eric Mark actually played Robert Tanner at that tournament. Eric Mark
won the game.

On the wall chart, Tanner's rating was 2101 but when Eric Mark checked
the MSA later he found that Tanner's rating had been raised to 2200.

As we now know, this was because Walter Brown and Mike Nolan had
suddenly "discovered" that Tanner should have been awarded the OLM
Title years before and therefore his rating was raised retroactively
to 2200.

Take a look at:
http://www.uschess.org/msa/XtblMain....09081-10495334

You will see that Tanner, number 723, lost to Eric Mark, number 614,
who was rated 1949.

Tanner played four games in this tournament against opponents
averaging 2016. Tanner scored 1.5-2.5, for a performance rating of
1916.

Eric Mark wrote several internet postings complaining about this, but
I did not notice them until yesterday.

Eric Mark has also pointed out that chess politicians Tim Redman and
Al Lawrence have had their ratings jacked up to 2000 after they fell
into the 1900s.

Is there any USCF rule that allows the ratings of chess politicians to
be raised?

Take a look at:
http://www.uschess.org/msa/MbrDtlTnmtHst.php?10346061
http://www.uschess.org/msa/MbrDtlTnmtHst.php?10367158

I have not decided whether, if I am elected, I will instruct my new
underlings to raise my rating to 2200, 2300 or 2400. Which sounds
better?


Have you checked to see if anyone who is not a USCF officer or
EB-member has had his/her rating floor adjusted in a similar fashion?
If the floors are changing due to a uniform policy, then the fact that
some USCF honchos benefit does not indicate favoritism. To prove
special treatment, you would have to show that ordinary members whose
rating history was comparable to that of Tanner, Redman and/or Lawrence
did NOT get a floor adjustment, while the politicos did.
Analogy: say a Republican president gets a tax cut passed by
Congress. As a result, millions of Republican voters get a windfall.
Favoritism? No, because the tax cut also benefited everyone regardless
of party.

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Old July 18th 06, 07:56 PM posted to rec.games.chess.computer,rec.games.chess.politics,rec.games.chess.misc,alt.chess
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Default Hanken more Fully Explains the OLM Title


Taylor Kingston wrote:
Sam Sloan wrote:
I need to explain that it was actually mild mannered newspaper
reporter Eric Mark who first discovered that there was something fishy
about Tanner's rating when he actually played Tanner at the February
2006 US Amateur Team East Championship.

Eric Mark actually played Robert Tanner at that tournament. Eric Mark
won the game.

On the wall chart, Tanner's rating was 2101 but when Eric Mark checked
the MSA later he found that Tanner's rating had been raised to 2200.

As we now know, this was because Walter Brown and Mike Nolan had
suddenly "discovered" that Tanner should have been awarded the OLM
Title years before and therefore his rating was raised retroactively
to 2200.

Take a look at:
http://www.uschess.org/msa/XtblMain....09081-10495334

You will see that Tanner, number 723, lost to Eric Mark, number 614,
who was rated 1949.

Tanner played four games in this tournament against opponents
averaging 2016. Tanner scored 1.5-2.5, for a performance rating of
1916.

Eric Mark wrote several internet postings complaining about this, but
I did not notice them until yesterday.

Eric Mark has also pointed out that chess politicians Tim Redman and
Al Lawrence have had their ratings jacked up to 2000 after they fell
into the 1900s.

Is there any USCF rule that allows the ratings of chess politicians to
be raised?

Take a look at:
http://www.uschess.org/msa/MbrDtlTnmtHst.php?10346061
http://www.uschess.org/msa/MbrDtlTnmtHst.php?10367158

I have not decided whether, if I am elected, I will instruct my new
underlings to raise my rating to 2200, 2300 or 2400. Which sounds
better?


Have you checked to see if anyone who is not a USCF officer or
EB-member has had his/her rating floor adjusted in a similar fashion?
If the floors are changing due to a uniform policy, then the fact that
some USCF honchos benefit does not indicate favoritism. To prove
special treatment, you would have to show that ordinary members whose
rating history was comparable to that of Tanner, Redman and/or Lawrence
did NOT get a floor adjustment, while the politicos did.
Analogy: say a Republican president gets a tax cut passed by
Congress. As a result, millions of Republican voters get a windfall.
Favoritism? No, because the tax cut also benefited everyone regardless
of party.



The policy as far as I can tell is that all requests for a 100-point
rating floor increase are approved. If anyone knows of a case in which
such a request was denied, please say so.

It is true, according to Mike Nolan, that the USCF office has denied
requests to LOWER rating floors.

My issue---not a big issue, but still---is that several players who
could be seen as USCF insiders have had their floors raised 100 points,
while most non-insiders do not even know that requesting a rating floor
increase is an option.

I've been posting about this on the USCF Forum.

Regards,
Eric M

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Old July 18th 06, 08:38 PM posted to rec.games.chess.computer,rec.games.chess.politics,rec.games.chess.misc,alt.chess
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Default Hanken more Fully Explains the OLM Title


Eric Mark wrote:
The policy as far as I can tell is that all requests for a 100-point
rating floor increase are approved. If anyone knows of a case in which
such a request was denied, please say so.

It is true, according to Mike Nolan, that the USCF office has denied
requests to LOWER rating floors.


That makes sense, since (as I understand it) the floors are intended
as an anti-sandbagging measure.

My issue---not a big issue, but still---is that several players who
could be seen as USCF insiders have had their floors raised 100 points,
while most non-insiders do not even know that requesting a rating floor
increase is an option.

I've been posting about this on the USCF Forum.


Sounds like it could use more publicity. In any event, it appears
Sloan is grossly distorting (what a surprise!) to depict this as some
sort of insider scandal. Thank you for the clarification.



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Old July 29th 06, 12:51 PM posted to rec.games.chess.computer,rec.games.chess.politics,rec.games.chess.misc,alt.chess
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Default Hanken more Fully Explains the OLM Title

At 09:13 PM 7/28/2006 -0500, Timothy P. Redman wrote:
Hi, Steve,

I guess I don't have some information here. What gap in my rating are
you referring to? I guess that there was some idiotic posting by Mr.
Sloan that I missed. If it was on the USCF chess forum, I don't seem to
be able to get to it. When I went to the USCF web site and typed in
forum, it didn't come up.

In any event, I am sure that the great majority of folks that you have
sent this message to take Mr. Sloan's postings with the seriousness
that they merit.

I foresee a lot of 1-6 votes on the new Executive Board.

Cordially,

Tim


If you go to your rating on the MSA and type in your name you will see
that on August 9, 1998 your rating was jumped from 1980 to 2000
without playing in any tournaments.

http://www.uschess.org/msa/MbrDtlTnmtHst.php?10346061

We now know the reason which is that you requested a rating floor of
2000 to stop your rating from dropping and supposedly to stop yourself
from being accused of being a sandbagger.

I am opposed to ratings floors for chess politicians. I note that at
your most recent tournament, the 2005 National Open in Las Vegas, both
you and Don Schultz played. Don lost all of his games. You lost all of
your games too, including a loss to a player rated 1855, except that
you did manage to get a draw against a player rated 1731.

Based upon recent results, both your rating and Don's rating would
fall below 1900 except that you both have floors of 2000.

My results have not been so great either. My rating is down to 1920
but I am not going to ask the office to give me a floor.

I recommend that you not go to the USCF Forums. Grant Perks has gone
nuts. He has just recommended that at the meeting in Chicago on August
12-13, the delegates should abolish OMOV and appoint a temporary
executive board to run the USCF. Talk about a sore looser!

Sam Sloan
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