SteinitzLives: I just finished reading Gregs' article on time controls and rounds per day, in the U.S. in uschess.org and had some impressions I had to share with the masses.
1) I respect Greg tremendously. I do not know him personally but believe he is a great teacher and great chess leader/organizer, the evidence of which is in much of his work which is known by most who follow U.S. Chess.
2) The state of chess in the U.S. is very inferior to that in other countries - also well known, and Greg has done more than his part to try to improve chess in the U.S.
3) Despite all of his other activities, Greg is attempting two of the hardest things in chess a) to improve his game, and b) bring the U.S. in line with the standards of treatment and benefit to chess players, that exist in other countries.
4) Time controls in tournaments in the U.S. are much more often slower/longer, and there are more rounds per day, than in other countries.
5) I disagree that this is such a bad thing.
6) Money paid to U.S. players (which was outside the scope of Gregs' article) is embarrassingly low compared to what chess leaders/organizers offer outside the U.S. I mention this because of the contradiction between the hard work required at chess in the U.S., and the low reward offered.
7) Many TD's in the U.S. have gone to some insulting lengths to raise prize funds for the top players, e.g. charging lower rated players ridiculously high entrance fees to pay for the prize funds, or seeking out donations from within the chess community, where there is very little money.
8) The U.S. has always had a strong: "work hard/get paid well" reward-oriented culture. Unhealthy as it is for some, and a joy for others in the U.S.: it's what we have here. It's part of why the recession has been so hard to take.
9) Gregs' desire for shorter/faster time controls, and one round a day flys directly in the face of the U.S. work hard work/get paid well reward-culture, and also in the face of the dismal financial conditions in U.S. Chess.
10) Solution: Aggressively and tirelessly seek good ol' American corporate $'s sponsorship (outside of the current chess community) and don't schedule or run the tournament until you get it! Other countries can do this, why can't we? Current U.S. chess players/leaders/organizers can't raise corporate $ sponsorship due to their mindlessly competitive, and often hopelessly undiplomatic behavior towards the business community. This is not an attack on Greg BTW. We have seen our own USCF leadership sue each other, and other related insanity to support my claims of some U.S. chess leaders/organizers ridiculous deficiencies.
11) Obtain strong corporate $ sponsorship, and lots of tournament conditions e.g. time control and rounds per day problems will go away.
12) Finally, and no offense to you poker players is intended (and Greg is a poker player). My experience is that playing enough poker makes a chess player a little or a lot soft (yes, I tried it very briefly, it could not compare to the pleasure of chess). I have half a dozen chess playing friends who took up serious tournament poker, a couple never came back. Those who did come back to chess, found chess to be too much work for too little money when compared to poker. You can make much more money at poker for let's face it, a lot less mental work than chess requires. Yet many poker players spend hours and hours working at the game. Do they complain that it's too much time, too many rounds per day? No. Why? Because they are getting well paid (or believe they have a chance at getting well paid) for the time spent. We don't have that in chess.
Bottom-line: Poker is more oriented to U.S. culture than chess is.
The Poker scene has some big differences from that of chess, and it is probably a whole lot easier to go from chess culture to poker culture than the reverse, and particularly difficult to do what Greg has done and that's to go from chess to poker, then back to chess.
Poker makes a chess player soft. Get back to work, man up, forget about poker, forget about chess outside the U.S., seek heavy U.S. corporate $ chess sponsorship, and the $ rewards will make the current "grueling" chess tournament time controls and rounds per day, seem a whole lot easier.