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the indispensable convention

Many avid beginners load up on bridge conventions like a greedy diner on a cafeteria queue. I personally would not be too discouraging of this excess because I remember my own excitement at first seeing the possibilities in new treatments. It is a good thing to see eager acolytes although they probably manifest no gain from these conventional forays. Bridge teachers rightfully avoid suggesting artificial methods. However there is one convention which I contend is essential, not just because it is essential to the expert, but because it is essential to the new player in order to avoid a very common, though inadvertent, ethical lapse. That convention is LEBENSOHL. 

A recent (anonymous NYC) club auction: 1NT- (2) - 2 - (P) - 3 - (P) - 4 - X - all P.    The 2 bid took place after a long huddle. As the cynics will suspect there were ample points to accept the subsequent invitation, but the real problem was the 3 invite. While the final contract was a failure for declarer it is a negative for all of us. When queried the inviter said that she and her partner "did not really play Lebensohl".   We are all aware that slow and fast bids which indicate different strengths are verboten; the problem is that without Lebensohl these BITs happen all the time. The problem is equally bad in the auctions:  2 - (X) - P - ??.   So not to belabor the point, Lebensohl is essential to eliminate a broad class of ethical problems.   What do you think?
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