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All comments by Pat Mizell
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Strange article; I've even heard a rumor that Jesus Christ was born Jewish.
Feb. 18, 2016
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Oh my god, somewhere at last to vent my frustrations about OKB. I've been trying to quit for several years now but like Michael Cordeleon,“I keep getting sucked back in”. First of all, it's an empty shell. The corpse that is in charge answers no one. The “Support Department” is a kid from the Philippines who they hired for $2.50 an hour ( that is not a joke ). He tries hard but doesn't have the resources to make even minor changes. Minor includes removing 9 year old announcements and such. They use Release 1.1 of Java, which is about 40 releases behind. This means you can't use a Mac and crashes are inherent. It's a shame because they do have a very loyal following who are willing to pay for a substandard product—while getting treated like lepers by the Corpse In Charge. I think the guy who was backing this site died and his widow has no interest—someone buy it and have a nice little niche product for some very nice people.
Feb. 11, 2016
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I like the idea of defending with this raggedy ass hand and 60% of my hand in my short suits but if I do bid I will tell my partner to pick his own damn suit—I don't want to have to play it.
Jan. 9, 2016
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How can we determine what goes through a person's mind at the five level when we don't understand what passed through at the two level. It's all random, don't you think?
Dec. 29, 2015
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What a bunch of drivel. You all sound like a damn pigpen with all the squealing and snorting. Are you hear to talk about bridge or to talk about the people who talk about bridge?
Dec. 23, 2015
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Fred, I think you've made a good start and I hope we can all toss in some tidbits for you to consider. One is the aspect of the tactile thing; I think it's not a real issue but if it is, then possibly a hybrid of your system where the players can actually hold their cards and then use a push butter entry device. That would cure that possible problem. The screens themselves being down all the time cures the visual part. The timing factor is an issue though. But with that all fixed, and it's mentioned all the time-you need to address electronics. But that's an easy fix; there are low frequency jammers on the market that are very inexpensive and you would only need one per table. Then set the range to five feet or so, or for that matter a bigger one that covers a larger area. Good luck; your system needs to cover all aspects while you have the world's attention on this matter.
Dec. 5, 2015
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My congrats to my old friend Dan Morse and all the other team members. Great show.
Dec. 2, 2015
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I've read almost nothing on this site that wasn't a discussion of 1. What the Committees did wrong, 2. What the ACBL did wrong, 3. What a nice fellow Mike is, and 4. Criticism of posters by other posters. This plus some silly, at the very least, actions by Mike that either clarified or caused further confusion. None of this matters a whit when compared to the real question. The real question is the first question that came to all of us when the episode raised it's ugly head. Until that is resolved the odor still lingers. The only thing we seem to know for sure is that a hand was played at one table that was a slightly different hand at the other table. Can or will someone post these two hands? The proof is in the pudding itself, not in a discussion of how it was cooked, served, or the utensil used to eat it with.
Nov. 29, 2015
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The discussion of finger signaling and punishment remind me of probably the most severe result of cheating, at least in the U.S.A. Back when Texas A&M University was predominately a male military oriented college, there were rumors of cheating in exams by the cadets using finger signals ( some claim it was for other abuses ). The reputation of the university's honor system was of course under severe criticism by many Aggie supporters as well as some derisive jokes from students at other Texas colleges.

The President of the University decided to take a course of punishment that left no question of the honor of the Corps of Cadets A policy was established that anyone caught signaling and cheating in exams were to have a middle finger cut off. Even then the abuses often continued on with the punishment for a second conviction leading to a loss of the other middle finger.

With cries from the public of course the rather strict Commandant of the Corps demanded an end to further removal of digits and the ultimate punishment for the third offense became expulsion from A&M. That was that as far as the Aggies were concerned and they for years snickered when they saw their former classmates who had transferred to the University of Texas holding their right hands in the air and cheering their now school's football players on with their cheer, “Hook um Horns”.

( with apology to non U.S. members—ask our football fans for a little prodding of the imagination).
Oct. 15, 2015
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Wow, Chris has started a wildfire. Based on the responses I've seen it appears to me that this is an issue that is even bigger than his original post. I've been away from bridge for almost 30 years and when I pick up a schedule for a national I get dizzy from all the hodgepodge. It seems to me that a look be taken at the entire year to determine the proper balance.

As someone pointed out, sometimes habit and tradition have a way of excluding present day realities; so let's put everything in perspective. With that said I think we can preserve tradition while at the same time make the schedules more appealing to everyone. I love board-a-match; when I was playing I always looked forward to one held at a sectional in Nagodoches, Texas. Chris and I were always there, as well as other semi serious bridge players. But the fact is-Board-a-Match is not real bridge; but as a unique and fun thing I'd like to see it preserved in some form, just not as a qualifying event for world competition.

Let's take a serious look at what a national should be. Then let's look at the inherent pluses and minuses of what we have now. What I propose is that the ACBL employ real professionals to make an objective study to take in account the desires of the several layers of attendees. We have the players who don't always attend annuals but are there because it's a rare chance for them to participate in big time bridge. Then we have the sizable crowd of bridge professionals and regular tournament players. Also, foreign players who'd like to come but have different time and expense issues from the rest of us.

I think we could make schedules that would be attractive to all of us-we just have to kill a few white elephants perhaps. Take the reins in your teeth Chris and run with it. Find the hot buttons for all of us and see what you can come up with. I'm a big believer in the school of thought that says the players wishes should trump bureaucracy and inertia. We can keep our traditions at the same time. One more thing; Paul Soloway was the epitome of what we should all aspire to as bridge players-a great player and a great person. We should honor him.
Oct. 8, 2015
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I'm pulling for you Swedes. You're playing well so keep it up.
Oct. 7, 2015
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Perhaps there should be a new world championship called the Cheaters Cup. Played in KO format with “spotting the system” being the elimination factor. It would certainly draw a lot of attention; it's beginning to look like a pretty good field is building.
Sept. 25, 2015
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No you don't get the point, John. My point is that justice was achieved when the authorities ignored the matter. If you think the punishment is yet to come then you've missed a bigger point—some administrative token means nothing. Their bridge life is over, some suspension or ban means nothing now. The authorities lost their chance and bungled it by apathy. Whatever administrative justice to come is just something assigned which can be reversed. What these guys already lost is any esteem and respect that was held by their peers. A NBO action has in every prior situation like this has been reversed or watered down.

The punishment of the peoples court can only be alleviated by the individuals themselves, and that's much harder to attain. That would be a long and hard process if it is possible at all. My farewell salute was directed at them as a gesture to point out this road, with the remark that if that is something they attempt, then I wish them well in their efforts because that would be the right thing for them to do, if they want to do the right thing.
Sept. 23, 2015
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Maybe you missed my point, and definition. A lynch mob in my book, as vigilante is, seeks justice for a blatant criminal act when the authorities ignore the crime. I see it as the ultimate vehicle of justice. My reference in context refers to the fact that it is a legitimate form of law.

Ignoring an injustice, as we see from the lack of official scrutiny in these cases, only digs the hole deeper. Sooner or later the law abiding public will take action, whether it is removing and replacing the complacent, or taking the matter to the ultimate authority-the peoples court.

The outcome I predicted is just pragmatic based on past observations with a hopeful yet skeptical probable result when the peoples court has adjourned-but with the reminder that Wyatt Earp, Sherlock Holmes, and Seat Team 2 will be there if needed.
Sept. 20, 2015
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Oh it was exactly a lynch mob….vigalante at worst. But you missed my point-it worked. It was the only alternative.
Sept. 19, 2015
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This is class by Sabine, Roy, and Christina. Timely, classy, and sufficient. I've met a lot of new heroes since this mess started, and you guys are in the pack with Kit and Boye, Eric and Jeff, and lots of others.
Sept. 19, 2015
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Ten Four Dennis
Sept. 15, 2015
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From an entirely different perspective, I'd like to add another horror story to the theme of this discussion. More than a few years back, I got involved in bridge politics and was privy to some conversations that most don't hear. In the President's Suite at a major tournament a international player I knew quite well came to a member of the ACBL Board of Directors who was standing next to me with the following news-he had broken the code of a well known pair who had been under suspicion for a long time and was ready to file a formal charge of premeditated cheating. The Board of Directors member gave him a very simple answer–“they are friends of mine and if you ever utter one word about this I'll see that you are ruined”. No beating around that bush, was it. Do I think this was a one off experience? What do you think? I quit playing bridge the next week; that was 25 years ago.
Sept. 15, 2015
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Statistics is a bit like quicksand; I know just enough about both to stay out of both. But a question about the statistical methodology we're using here…if we determine that X% of world champions are cheating, does it follow that X% of everyday players are also? The incentives are different but as we know, the rewards for winning are relative to one's peer group.
Sept. 14, 2015
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