There has been a sickening amount of stripping of our society of any sort of challenge or contest in a stupid attempt to make everything somehow politically correct.
This has resulted in an end to all sorts of things including games of tag and dodge ball at school. (And what political correctness does not take, the lawyers take care of) The people behind this movement want to shift from rewarding correctness, creativity and accuracy to rewarding participation even if it's wrong. I even saw this phenomenon in my MBA program. Most of the instructors rewarded participation, any participation, regardless of the content (some of which was pure crap, assuming "rational decision making").
This disease is best illustrated in the 'People's Cube', a Rubik's Cube in which all the sides are red and the puzzle is in a constant state of being solved regardless of the competency of the user.
So I was wondering if this sort of attitude will spell doom for chess, (as it slowly destroy's our society) where the goal is to capture the other player's king. Other than the Queen being the most powerful piece in the game, the game itself is very un-PC. The current trend would suggest as much. So, in the spirit of 'political correctness' and the 'People's Cube' I figured out the following versions on how to play chess in which the only possible outcome is a tie. The nice thing is that the pieces move the same way as in regular chess.
The first version and the most traditional one starts with only the kings on the board. The best outcome would be a stalemate. In fact, this game starts as a stalemate, before the first move is even made as the only pieces on the board are the kings.
The nice thing about this setup is that not only are there no kings or other pieces to get in the way, but each players pieces have exclusive use of their color squares on the board. So even though you can get right up to your opponents pieces, you are never in any danger of losing either of your pieces or even losing the game.
Pawns: (Alternate name: People's Chess)
This final version puts the pawns on the board. No longer a bit-player in the real game of chess, these guys take center stage with no other pieces to steal their thunder. Every piece on the board is equally important and every piece is equally protected. One difference about this game from the other two listed above is that this version have a limited amount of moves. So while the versions above can be played indefinitely, this version is good when the available amount of time to play is limited.
The Pieces Too Dangerous to Put on the Board:
As you can see, I found no place for these pieces in the world of 'new' Chess. First both the Queen and the Rooks are just too powerful. They can run right across the board, creating havoc as they go. Then there are the knights. They have the ability to jump over other pieces, which is very much like walking over other people. That is very un-PC, so they need to go.
A couple of years back, I had the opportunity to play my friend's five year old boy in a game of chess. He was a real fan of the game and played his dad all the time and he would win. So of course I crushed him in our game. He didn't expect that outcome. Sure I could have let him win, but that would have just made him dangerously confident. You never should be so comfortable in real chess or life for that matter. That is what 'New' Chess is for.
And remember, do you want the person repairing the airplane your getting ready to board to have received great participation grades while training or have been graded highly for his knowledge in what he was being trained to do? Participation is a good thing, but should not come at the cost of knowledge.
The People's Cube - "The most politically correct game ever"
Soft Courses, Hard Courses and 'Fuzzy Math' - 28 Nov 07