Thursday, February 09, 2006

Reign of Error

That is how grandmaster Yasser Seirawan characterises the current regime that runs our world body, FIDE. It is clear that Seirawan's letter, published originally in Chess Today, is really just a leg up for his mate, Bessel Kok, but the US grandmaster does score some points. One thing he said, which a Pinoy like me can appreciate is this:

It is Kirsan's money that has supported the FIDE organization, his rules, his formats and his administration. Again, I can't think of another single sports body where the President has to personally financially guarantee his vision for the "growth" of the sport. FIDE is addicted to the money of one person. It is not the product, chess, which is lacking it is the lack of capable, competent, professional administrators selling that product. Our cherished, noble sport that once held such high cultural importance has morphed. We have become a band of beggars.

The observation is a powerful one. It reminded me of the Marcos years. The problem with relying so much on the charity of one man is that it can have a stupefying effect. Before you know it, you're in so deep in his pockets you just can't get out!

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