Keene's claim to have won "22 national championship titles."

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Andrew Zigmond
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Re: Keene's claim to have won "22 national championship titles."

Post by Andrew Zigmond » Fri Mar 13, 2015 11:32 pm

Niall Doran wrote:Yes they do, Andrew.

But this is also a forum for discussing English chess, so the subject is relevant. In a way, it's even better to discuss this type of thing here, as it's neutral ground, whereas anyone trying to defend Mr Keene on the Streatham Blog might feel they're playing on away turf.
I take your point and I certainly have my own opinions on Mr Keene. However I'm increasingly coming round to the view that it's only a minority who are absolutely obsessed with everything he does (and most of these are authors and journalists - a narrow demographic). The way I see it, as a retired Grandmaster and a correspondant for a major newspaper, not to mention Cambridge alumni) he will be invited to events as a guest. At present it seems he can't show his face anywhere without the guns being drawn and players and benefactors being caught in the resulting crossfire; to the point where the event itself gets relegated to a sideshow.

Of course we've had this discussion before and the response from certain quarters is invariably, `Well it's their own fault for inviting him.` However, to the vast majority of English chess players his presence is of little interest; if anything they'll roll their eyes and move on.

Perhaps if we learnt something new each year rather than the same allegations and sly jokes it would be different. But we don't, and it isn't.

I was planning to stay out of this one but now I've said it ...
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Roger de Coverly
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Re: Keene's claim to have won "22 national championship titles."

Post by Roger de Coverly » Fri Mar 13, 2015 11:49 pm

Andrew Zigmond wrote:The way I see it, as a retired Grandmaster and a correspondent for a major newspaper, not to mention Cambridge alumni) he will be invited to events as a guest.
That is completely reasonable. The mystery remains though as to why those who employ him as a columnist permit him and his ghost writer(s) to endlessly recycle the same material, particularly when it first appeared elsewhere than in his columns.

Jonathan Bryant
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Re: Keene's claim to have won "22 national championship titles."

Post by Jonathan Bryant » Sat Mar 14, 2015 8:16 am

Andrew Zigmond wrote:I'm not being funny but don't those who have an obsession with everything Mr Keene does have a blog complete with comments for them to discuss it to their hearts content?
The thread wasn’t started by an S&BC Blog writer. By a quick count I see around 25 people have contributed to the thread thus far of which only two are S&BC Blog writers.

Leaving aside the obvious points that it is not open to everybody to write an article for the blog and that the blog is a blog and not a discussion forum, it appears that there is an interest in discussing RDK here. Maybe not for you - which is entirely fair enough - but other people seem to want to.

O.G. Urcan
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Re: Keene's claim to have won "22 national championship titles."

Post by O.G. Urcan » Sun Mar 15, 2015 8:33 am

A reference by Christopher Kreuzer on 13 March ("Colin Crouch insults Justin Horton") reminds me that after Crouch made vague negative remarks about Horton in connection with Keene last November I wrote on Twitter:

"Let's focus on the substance: are any of Horton's criticisms of Keene on that long list (http://streathambrixtonchess.blogspot.c ... x.html?m=1) factually wrong?"

Crouch replied (typos corrected here):

"Very first post. Horton notes that Keene in the Times gives puzzles such as 'mate in two with Qxh7'. Examples?"

Gerard Killoran then posted a link (https://archive.org/details/The_Times_Winning_Moves) which proved that Horton was right.

Crouch responded:

"Fair point! But any more examples? Nearly fell asleep in trying to go through Horton's dreary Blog."

And that was that. Getting Horton's critics to focus on the substance is not easy.

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Re: Keene's claim to have won "22 national championship titles."

Post by Andrew Zigmond » Sun Mar 15, 2015 9:09 pm

Jonathan Bryant wrote:
Andrew Zigmond wrote:I'm not being funny but don't those who have an obsession with everything Mr Keene does have a blog complete with comments for them to discuss it to their hearts content?
The thread wasn’t started by an S&BC Blog writer. By a quick count I see around 25 people have contributed to the thread thus far of which only two are S&BC Blog writers.

Leaving aside the obvious points that it is not open to everybody to write an article for the blog and that the blog is a blog and not a discussion forum, it appears that there is an interest in discussing RDK here. Maybe not for you - which is entirely fair enough - but other people seem to want to.
Again, fair enough although I suppose I was thinking more specifically of journalists who seem to have an obession with Mr Keene, of whom the topic starter and a commentator on the S&B blog is very much one.

Picking up on the most recent post it is true that none of the allegations made appear to be `factually wrong` and up to a point I can understand the bemusement that it's still continuing. However I'm not sure any new facts are really coming to light (there may be further examples to quote but that's a different thing).

What I find increasingly wearing is that the same small clique of journalists seem to consider it acceptable to insult anybody who has the temerity to be photographed with or be generally associated with their pet target. For all his faults Mr Keene's talent as a player and (more importantly) his passion for the game can't be denied and I'm increasingly convinced that the arguments about `termites` destroying positive things about English chess has some legitimacy.
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Roger de Coverly
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Re: Keene's claim to have won "22 national championship titles."

Post by Roger de Coverly » Sun Mar 15, 2015 9:24 pm

Andrew Zigmond wrote: What I find increasingly wearing is that the same small clique of journalists seem to consider it acceptable to insult anybody who has the temerity to be photographed with or be generally associated with their pet target.
For some reason, perhaps because the President writes for newspapers opposed to the political views of one of the S&B bloggers (I don't think the term journalist is appropriate), there is something of the same vitriol towards the ECF President that is displayed towards RDK. I'm waiting for the denunciation of Kirsan for appearing in a photograph with Dominic.
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Paul McKeown
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Re: Keene's claim to have won "22 national championship titles."

Post by Paul McKeown » Sun Mar 15, 2015 10:01 pm

Andrew Zigmond wrote:his passion for the game can't be denied
At best a Sachliche Romanze. The passion Keene may once have held for chess is long gone, all that remains is the security that it brings him.

Jonathan Bryant
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Re: Keene's claim to have won "22 national championship titles."

Post by Jonathan Bryant » Mon Mar 16, 2015 12:12 am

Roger de Coverly wrote:I'm waiting for the denunciation of Kirsan for appearing in a photograph with Dominic.
That’s quite funny. Maybe we’ll do it.

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Re: Keene's claim to have won "22 national championship titles."

Post by Jonathan Bryant » Mon Mar 16, 2015 12:26 am

Jonathan Bryant wrote:
Roger de Coverly wrote:I'm waiting for the denunciation of Kirsan for appearing in a photograph with Dominic.
That’s quite funny. Maybe we’ll do it.
Andrew Zigmond wrote: ... the same small clique of journalists seem to consider it acceptable to ....
I must confess the idea that there’s a body of journalists which are somehow anti-Ray is one of the more surprising things that I’ve ever read on the internet.

Who are the members of this 'clique' supposed to be and what is their connection?

O.G. Urcan
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Re: Keene's claim to have won "22 national championship titles."

Post by O.G. Urcan » Mon Mar 16, 2015 5:11 am

On 13 March Andrew Zigmond wrote of Raymond Keene:

"At present it seems he can't show his face anywhere without the guns being drawn and players and benefactors being caught in the resulting crossfire; to the point where the event itself gets relegated to a sideshow."

In fact, the relegation has been done by Raymond Keene himself, as I pointed out on Twitter on 8 March:

"For the Varsity Match yesterday @Times_Chess posted over a dozen tweets. One of them was about the chess."

Ernie Lazenby
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Re: Keene's claim to have won "22 national championship titles."

Post by Ernie Lazenby » Mon Mar 16, 2015 9:40 am

Keene is a controversial individual however chess is full of such individuals myself included so why don't we just accept that fact and move on. I suspect Ray gets some pleasure knowing at his age people are still discussing him; after all, his achievements are now very much in the past. He's yesterday's story.

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Re: Keene's claim to have won "22 national championship titles."

Post by O.G. Urcan » Mon Mar 23, 2015 5:49 am

One difficulty with Ernie Lazenby's wish for no further discussion of Raymond Keene is that new transgressions keep coming to light. The latest exposé, from yesterday, is this.

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Re: Keene's claim to have won "22 national championship titles."

Post by JustinHorton » Mon Mar 23, 2015 10:11 am

The interesting thing about Ray - apart from the fact that he's an interesting chap in himself, he's led an interesting life - is that he holds a mirror up to the people, the institutions and the societies that tolerate and defend him. (This is generally true of people of his type, I think.)

If they didn't, there would be rather less cause to mention him.
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Brian Towers
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Re: Keene's claim to have won "22 national championship titles."

Post by Brian Towers » Mon Mar 23, 2015 5:39 pm

JustinHorton wrote:he holds a mirror up to the people, the institutions and the societies that tolerate and defend him.
You're absolutely right of course and it's not just the institutions and societies that tolerate him, it's the clearly misguided people who tolerate him. Tolerance is awful, don't you think? I think we should burn him. He's clearly a witch.
Ah, but I was so much older then. I'm younger than that now.

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Re: Keene's claim to have won "22 national championship titles."

Post by Andrew Zigmond » Mon Mar 23, 2015 5:58 pm

O.G. Urcan wrote:One difficulty with Ernie Lazenby's wish for no further discussion of Raymond Keene is that new transgressions keep coming to light. The latest exposé, from yesterday, is this.
Mr Urcan and myself may have to differ on the meaning of the word `new`. The link refers to something that happened in 2008. The article itself is undated but the fact that anybody clicking on to that page would have to scroll some way to find it suggests that it was posted somewhat earlier than `yesterday`.

EDIT - It appears I was mistaken as the reference refers to a subsequent publication in 2013 and Chess Notes does appear to have newer posts at the bottom (most blogs run the other way). I still feel that the supposed `expose` is more tittle tattle rather than a headline grabbing scandal.
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