Free Speech

Garry Kasparov and Me, Talking About Free Speech …

... and, fortunately for me, not playing chess.


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  1. Cool. Thanks for sharing.

    But why is it fortunate you weren’t playing chess? I would think a match with Mr, Kasparov would be quite memorable. And then you’d have a cool story to tell about the time you held your own against Mr. Kasparov for [insert small number here] moves.

    That said, the question that exchange brings to (my) mind is: Who’s the greater subject-matter expert? Mr. Kasparov when it comes to chess or Mr. Volokh when it comes to free speech issues?

    1. Garry Kasparov is possibly the greatest chess player who ever lived. In just about anyone’s rankings, he’s in the top ten all time, probably top five in most. If there were a first amendment championship, EV would be playing in the candidates’ matches, which puts him above “ordinary” grandmasters, but I doubt if even he would expect to make the quarterfinals.

      1. Possibly? Top ten?

        Nobody who knows anything about chess has Garry Kasparov outside the top 3. And people who really know about chess, like the current World Champion (at all time controls) and highest rated chess player ever (Magnus Carlsen), say Kasparov is the greatest. Kasparov was the youngest world champion and dominated chess for 20 years with a rating separation from other players that was unmatched. At his peak rating (2851) the next highest rating was 80 points lower and only three players were within 100 points. By comparison, Carlsen’s peak rating (2882) was 67 points higher than the next and there were five players within 100 points of Magnus’s peak rating.

        Using chessmetrics (which purports to adjust for era, etc.), Bobby Fisher has the 1-year mark at 2881 with Kasparov second at 2879. Kasparov held the 5-year mark (2875) besting second by 21 points and Fisher (5th) by 34. He held the 10-year mark (2863) besting second by 16 points and Fisher (5th) by 53 points. Also, the 15-year mark (2862) besting second by 42 points and Fisher not on the list. Also, the 10-year mark (2856) besting second by 38 points. The man was basically as dominant as Fisher in his best year and was considerably more dominant than any other player over a 5, 10, 15, or 20 year stretch.

        And, certainly, if you dropped peak Kasparov into a match versus peak anyone from a prior era, he would crush them due to the advantage of advancements in chess theory and preparation. Peak Carlsen would beat peak Kasparov for the same reason, and maybe because Carlsen is actually better. He’s the only one that really has a legitimate claim to rival Kasparov and, again, he gives GOAT to Kasparov……for now.

        Next, I suppose you are going to tell me that Michael Jordan is possibly the greatest basketball player who ever lived. In just about anyone’s rankings, he’s in the top ten all time, probably top five in most.

        To be clear, he’s the GOAT and anyone who puts him out of the top three is mentally challenged.

    2. Tilted: I’m sure a chess game with Kasparov would be memorable for me (not for him) — but I wouldn’t want it posted for the whole world to see ….

      As to the second paragraph, one of us has been a world champion, and one of us hasn’t.

  2. How many games, his own and those of other chess all-stars, could GK recall move for move? How much storage space does all that chess data take up in his incredible brain? And then there is so much more in that brain beyond chess genius. (He has more of a personality than Bobbt Fischer, too.)

    1. [OT, so apologies to EV]

      neurodoc, In case you didn’t see it, Miss Greenparker belatedly returned to the Rockland County COVID cluster thread. She left a lengthy and dare I say deranged response to your medical observations.

      1. Thank you the personal libel, Leo Marvin, regarding my response to the neurodoc’s personal libel from the other day and also to the medical issues he raised but did not document or source with studies or stats, as a “doctor: of “lawyer.” Online, there are notable physicians, virologists, and other savvy observers of what’s really going on who would disagree with him and the issues he just touched upon.

        You both are more than welcome to support the lockdowns, business and school closings, masks, toxic sanitizing, and social distancing for a not excessively virulent flu, as compared to previous years’ mortality rates. And, feel free to keep up your finger-pointing at those who see this absurd and very destructive fear theater for what it is, in mine and many others’ opinions.

        You either sincerely disagree with the view that we are not experiencing a real epidemic or pretend this flu is an existential threat sufficient to close down the global middle class economy. Either way, all of the big corporate players are being given trillions of public monies over this “emergency.” Risky vaccines are being developed and likely to be mandated some day soon, along with tagging information, according to Bill Gates. Your POV seems willfully blind to me, but I don’t call you or your opinions stupid, crazy or evil.

        For the record, you do not have leave to trash me or characterize my opinions as crazy, deranged, or loony. I can’t stop you, of course, but your bullying and attempt at shaming over an opinion that strongly disagrees with your is truly declasse, as is you weird heads-up snitching here on an unrelated thread. It’s all so third grade. Third rate.

        1. Hey Miss Greenpants,

          You claim “there are notable physicians, virologists, and other savvy observers of what’s really going on who would disagree with (neurodoc) and the issues he just touched upon. ” How about naming those “notables,” citing what they have had to say, and linking to where they have published. You can’t find any credible support for your crazy, deranged, loony conspiracy
          thinking, though.

          1. Hey, back atcha.  You’re going to have to give me a day or two or three to find the links, since I have a lot of work to do, and also it’s our wedding anniversary.  Joe is such a loving husband and brilliant man.  A terrific lawyer, too.  

            By the way, I can’t take full credit for this “crazy, deranged, loony conspiracy thinking” that an Establishment shill may attribute to someone outside his comfort zone of groupthink.  There are many “civilian” and brave medical professionals who are calling out the not at all settled medical science on this particular strain, its remediation, and whether we’re experiencing a pandemic.  Doctors and statisticians have been laying waste to the pandemic models, policies, and reportage of numbers, while most of their peers have remained mum or are completely on board with the official line.

            Covid “dissenters” are questioning the accuracy of its testing;  the irregularly compiled and conflated stats;  the CDC’s own really loose guidelines as to what constitutes a Covid case and death;  that the healthy are being quarantined and punished for the first time in recent history;  that the demographics of those mostly affected by this flu are not being considered in a more tailored “emergency” public health response;  all of the iffy to immune system harming advice and legally enforced Thou Shalts;  the economy killing and socially disrupting mandates that cause not untrivial deleterious financial and worse health problems, to include the very likely prospect of mandated and newly developed vaccines;  the coordinated media talking points;  the general hysteria being whipped up by politicians and celebrities;  and, the fact most of us don’t know anyone at death’s door because of this flu.  Scope and scale matter, and stats often distort through carelessness and sometimes outright lies.

            In fact, most of us don’t know anyone who has the flu these days, even in “hotspot” cities, such as where we live.  Undoubtedly, there are patients in hospitals, but not nearly as many as we’re told are stricken with a killer flu, and that’s what some hospital administrators have publicly said and what a few doctors are telling us, privately.  People have died and are dying from this flu, but mostly due to comorbidities and in fairly specific demographic brackets.   Sadly, flu aftereffects and deaths happen every year, and this year’s been no exception, except for the sudden upending the entire world over it, and immediately.  We would be remiss not to question the fascist authority being wielded to deny us our civil rights and traditional, necessary commerce over a flu whose actual transmission rate and numbers haven’t added up to a global pandemic, as it was weirdly characterized it would be from the very outset and just weeks after the Gates Foundation and WHO hosted a big global drill over a hypothetical coronavirus global pandemic.

            Perhaps the seriously damaging overreaction is not coordinated, and the political fear-mongers and their officials, usual mainstream media minions, guild professionals, and susceptible TV land viewers have lost their collective mind all at once.  That proposition seems rather doubtful.  There are other things going on, in the opinion of many observers, just not in many of those here at this site, and that’s OK.

            1. You know, though, that those who get very personal when others choose not to fall in line with what they believe to be true and especially if they question any official narrative based on what they see and look into, could be somewhat charitably described as having compartmentalized, myopic, insular, in denial, close-minded, programmed and conformist thinking.  Or, less generously, as arrogant and cliquish, aspiring club member, credentialist, corrupt, aggressively protective of authority, enabler, wagon-circler, bully, accusing, smug and proud of their contumely, brave anonymous keyboarder, and self-serving alarmist.  Or, it could be they are truly fearful, hypochondriacal, reactive, reflexive, or unsavvy and ignorant of the world at large, especially as to the fact of scarcely veiled big agenda and the methods of mass manipulation used in service to them. 

              Both parties can play that ugly game, but at least I don’t tell all of the readers here and cached for an eternity that someone whose viewpoint is different from mine or even anathema to me “thinks like a nutcase”, and so forth, and, then, compliment myself on the aspersions and nasty I can throw at that person, as you did last week, with your pal.   You’ve given us your measure.  Fine.

              Obviously, this is not the appropriate comment section for this discussion.  I’ll post the links and summaries on the “Rockland County” thread, instead.

              1. Oh, I just noticed your “Hey Miss Greenpants?”

                What is that supposed to mean– some kind of woman slur involved there? Well, I’m not crying in my coffee over what a clever lout you are and rather think your alleged head patients should sue you for malpractice, “Dr. Contumely” (hat tip to Leo), because that’s some weak stuff.

                Never mind the links I was going to offer you and others here. You’re not asking for them in good faith.

  3. My parents were Communists but many of their friends were merely “parlor pink.” Regardless all were tarred with the same brush in whispering campaigns conducted by private organizations like the American Legion. People were fired from universities and other organizations for espousing dissenting viewsthat some felt were beyond the pale. This was the 50s in small town America.

    I see direct parallels with today’s thought purity campaigns enhanced of course by social media. A lot of people seem to know no history and therefore don’t recognize themselves as witch hunters.

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