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gcnphkr

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Everything posted by gcnphkr

  1. gcnphkr

    A wake-up call?

    T2Eagle: "This is the view I dont understand. We have somehow come to believe that we dont have to pay for our democracy, that somehow taxes themselves are an evil thing levied upon us by ignoble forces they are not, they are rather one of the cornerstones of democracy." There are taxes and then there are taxes. Initially the Federal Government was funded mostly by tariffs, user fees and property taxes of various types. Being voluntary, these forms of taxes tend to be readily self limiting, which is why, until the establishment of the income tax, government taxation and spending was mostly local. The confiscatory income tax changed that. Now instead of the users of the service being the ones to pay for it, government is able to provide services to the people that do not pay for it. Such charity cases as GE, ADM and Boeing, as well as wonderful activities like war.
  2. gcnphkr

    A wake-up call?

    "Who's advocating violence?" Taxes as confiscatory. They say, "Give us your money or we will come and throw you in jail". That is violence. "Some might and do think hurting and causing harm to the people who can least afford it to be morally reprehensible." Not providing something is not the moral equivalent of active harm. Say I lived alone on a desert island. All I have to eat are bananas and fish. One day a ship comes by. They give me steak, potatoes and Diet Coke. This goes on for a week. Then one morning the ship leaves and I am back to having bananas and fish. Has this ship caused me harm by leaving? No. Is it under a moral obligation to stay and continue to provide me steak, potatoes and Diet Coke? No. The same is the case with government. Withdrawing a service that would not exist if the state did not exist at all is not doing harm. "What I really don't understand though, is why it is ok to cut services and benefits for the middle and lower-middle class, while leaving the wealthiest individuals unscathed." I do not believe they should be left "unscathed". There should be an end to subsidies. Corporations should pay for the negative externalities that they create. "The Fair Tax would eliminate most of this rancor." Payroll taxes are stupid taxes. They penalize productivity and are involuntary. A consumption tax would be far better. The do not discourage wealth creation and can be avoided by anyone willing to do without a particular good. "I guess you weren't following things back when we shifted from a balanced budget and a surplus to our current status partly BECAUSE of those 'temporary' tax cuts." We did not go from a surplus to a deficit because of the tax cuts. A significant factor in the loss of revenue with the recession in 2001-2002. Additionally the decrease in revenue was less then the increase in spending. Revenues from income tax decreased about $150 billion between 2001-2002. Spending increased by $225 billion. By 2003 income tax revenue was about $200 billion as spending increased by $390 billion. By 2008 income revenue was about $175 billion ABOVE the 2001 baseline while spending was now $1.1 TRILLION more than it was in 2001. (Those numbers are in 2005 dollars) So while it is true that the change was partially because of the change in taxes, it was a small part compared to the increase in spending. "I think there is a moral responsibility to pay for goods and services that are received...even if the costs are painful." There is. Beyond your, "if we don't want the pain, get rid of the services", is government the best method of delivering those services. In many cases the answer is "No". "But in the meantime until we make that decision, we should not put that bill off onto future generations..we should pay those bills now." Better, if we cannot pay for those bills, then like it or not we should discontinue the service. That is the problem that Eamonn does not want to address. We are already to the point that even if we took all the money (not just income, but all their wealth) from the top earners we still would not have enough to cover our current spending. We cannot tax our way out of this. There just isn't enough money. "If everyone paid the same tax rate, we wouldn't be in this bind! A flat 20% on all income with no loopholes!" Make it a consumption tax instead of an income tax and I would likely agree. Ideally taxes should directly target the externality that needs to be addressed. Fuel taxes are a better means of paying for roads than property taxes.
  3. gcnphkr

    A wake-up call?

    For those of you who believe that you are taxed to little. Please go to http://treasurydirect.gov and pay as much extra as you want. That you would advocate violently taking money from others just because you don't want the government to live within its means is morally reprehensible. The problem with tax increases is that they do not raise more revenue. Never have, never will. Higher, lower taxes, it does not matter, revenue will remain at about 18% of GDP. You just cannot spend at 25% of GDP with that sort of revenue. The only option that actually works is to cut spending. Yes, it may hurt some people for a while. But it will be much worse in about 10 years if nothing is done.
  4. gcnphkr

    ECOH Ettiquete

    It will depend on your unit's custom. In most cases the ECOH is separate from other COHs and it would be unusual to make an award to someone other than the Eagle(s). You should have a COH at least every 3 months and you can recognize the youth at any troop/team meeting. In this case, I would have recognized the victory in the team meeting and possibly again at the COH.
  5. gcnphkr

    Recruiting OA ceremonialists

    Our troop has 2-3 teams. I can't keep track, they change around. But generally we take two to ordeals. It can be an issue with troop activities. We include the major OA events in our calendar, but that does not always work out. This spring Vigil Weekend is the same as the Camporee & call out. Eagle92 that list sounds about right. We have a very fun coach who is constantly recruiting scouts. One year we only had 3 scouts elected. If it had been up to him we would have had the election again. For those in the troop, being on a ceremony team, especially a competitive one, is a status thing. Of the 20 youth members, 16 are active in ceremonies at one level or another. One team took first in Pre-Ordeal at NOAC in 2009 and another made it into the final round in Ordeal. The coach is hoping to field a team for 2012 with all Vigil and Eagle members. Did I mention this is a big deal in the unit? But it doesn't extend much beyond the troop. There is one scout from another troop that does ceremonies with them. That is it for the entire clan (4 chapters). These are urban or suburban chapters, so transportation is not an issue. Few of the other teams in the lodge can be counted on. I doubt any of them have 8 members. I'd like to help the lodge change this, if only for selfish motives--the guys get frustrated when they are the only ceremonialists that shows up at ordeal.
  6. gcnphkr

    Parents attending OA Ceremonies

    I've tried spinning this off but I get an OBDC error ("Microsoft OLE DB Provider for ODBC Drivers error '80040e14' [Microsoft][ODBC SQL Server Driver] Incorrect syntax near '='. /forums/forum_library.asp, line 341") if anyone cares. Eagle92 mentioned this and it is my experience as well. We have a large lodge with about 1500 dues paying youth in 23 chapters. Even if we only counted the urban chapter we should be able to field at least 12 teams. I think there are actually only 6 or 7, and 3 of them are in our chapter (all but one member is in our troop). Granted it is a lot of work, practicing the ceremonies, working on regalia and being in demand for Call Outs, Ordeals, Crossovers, AOL, etc. But it is easily one of the most fun things they do. I feel sorry for them and their advisors. From January to March the guys in the troop handle about 20 ceremonies, sometimes as many a 3 in a day. Then comes call outs and ordeals. They don't just do our district's call out, they go to other districts' camporees and do theirs as well. One advisor was yelled at by a Pack CC for not being able to fit her pack in on 1 week notice for an AOL ceremony. So what makes it so difficult to get teams? Is it lack of youth or adults? Or is a lack of resources? I don't think it is just an rural/urban thing as we are primarily urban. We recently had a big ceremonies push with the Lodge Fellowship as well as a special party for all the ceremonialists in the lodge, where anyone interested in being a ceremonialist was invited to come. It seems the only teams that are effective are ones sponsored by a troop. That seems to be the sort of team that SR540Beaver describes and is the case with our most reliable teams. Is this a situation where we need to be getting better buy in and support from unit leaders as opposed to trying to recruit individual scouts from multiple troops?
  7. gcnphkr

    Parents attending OA Ceremonies

    That certainly maxes out your team. I don't understand why it is so difficult to get ceremony teams.
  8. gcnphkr

    Parents attending OA Ceremonies

    My question was not about the size of the ring. We use some very small rings. It was about having 40 ordealists in a single ceremony. We try to limit it to 20 or less. They may be larger if we are short ceremony teams. But at our big ordeal we will have 3-4 teams going and each will do the ceremony 2-3 times (150-200 ordealists).
  9. gcnphkr

    Parents attending OA Ceremonies

    hendrickms24, your "a)to participate and recognize their son's achievement" is not within BSA guidelines. Observation is not the same as participating. As for recognizing the achievement that does not require their presence at the Ordeal. If parents want to come and watch that is fine, I've no problem with that at all, but they just need to be respectful enough of others to be as unobtrusive as possible. For those that say you don't have room for parents. Is there a reason you do such large groups? I'll admit that there are times the ceremony team can be exhausted after their 3rd or 4th go around, but smaller ceremonies seem more fitting. If a parent wants to attend I think it is appropriate to have a conversation about it. Simply observing the ceremony will not alleviate concerns about the Order, and I very much doubt that was the reason the parents mentioned in this thread wanted to attend. It seems to be a significant event in the scout's life that they wanted to be a part of. Great, explain what will happen, that they should stay quiet and still during the ceremony out of respect for others. I enjoyed being there for my son's ordeal & brotherhood (we get to share our vigils in two weeks, WOO HOO!). I can't see why a parent should miss this just because they are not a member, although I don't think it will be particularly meaningful to them if they are not members. As for the "It will lessen the meaning for them when they have their own ordeal" argument. If mom or dad is this involved and you expect them to be Arrowmen someday, why were they not nominated in the first place? The biggest need for adults is drivers, here is your driver. In our unit it is more the case of "We would like to nominate you this year, but your son did not get elected this time. Would you rather wait a year?" In seven years with the troop I cannot think of a parent that was inducted after their son. If you've filled your quota, go talk with the DE. The district may make at large adult nominations. Why is it that parents want to attend the ceremony but don't seem to want to share in the rest of the ordeal? If it is truly a safety issue you would think the opposite would be the case. Also, I've never known a parent that wanted to observe the Brotherhood Ceremony. Could it be because our lodge generally does those at dawn?
  10. gcnphkr

    2013 Jamboree

    I signed my first recommendation last night. This time the council will have one troop that is just going to the Jamboree without the extra tour. Saves almost $2000 from the cost. About time. What the heck is a j-phone and is it really needed to provide schedules? >>>Healthy food and drinks offered. Where is the fun in that?
  11. gcnphkr

    Hmmm...anti-kudos.

    yeah, this is an area that gets abused. they should be tested in the activity's conditions. a swim test in a pool is not the same as a 1500 acre lake with water temperature in the 40s. but do you make everyone take the test in the cold water? if his description is correct then this trip should have been limited to strong swimmers. they could have gone to a lower altitude lake with water on the 60s and air temp in the 80s and avoided the issues.
  12. gcnphkr

    New Leadership Training Program

    Please don't give national ideas.
  13. gcnphkr

    Camping Merit badge

    >So far the scout has not come back to me. I have asked the scoutmaster if they keep >records for Scout camping or camping with the scouts for the members of the troop. >The only answer I have got was summer camp. As of right know, that is 5 days/nites of >camping. I believe he has been to summer camp 3 times. 15 days/nites, but I am counting >that as 5 days/nites. >Am I right??? Yes. Only one week (in this case 5 nights) of long term camping may count. Indecently, this is also the case with the OA. SO, either he has other camping or they powers that be allowed him to be elected anyway. It is hard to imagine a unit that does not keep records. You might find out if the troop at least has a list of their campouts to see if the scout remembers any of them. Ultimately this is not your responsibility as MB counselor. The scout should be able to provide you with a list of his nights of camping.
  14. gcnphkr

    What Would You Add to the National Store?

    Knee socks with garters and tabs. The old baker tent or a modern version in synthetic fabric with light-weight poles.
  15. gcnphkr

    Hiking Merit Badge

    Change the approach. Few people want to hike 10 or 20 miles just to hike, at least when they first start out. But hiking to a remote Indian ruin, to a water fall & swimming hole or an old RR tunnel is another thing entirely. Find some cool destinations than happen to be 10 mile hikes. You might even need to start with some shorter ones just to get them started. Once they start hiking, and find out they like it just to hike, then you can start getting them to do a 20 miler just because.
  16. gcnphkr

    Hmmm...anti-kudos.

    So, you wouldn't have had an issue if they hadn't said they would stay on the perimeter?
  17. gcnphkr

    Camping Merit badge

    The tents that staff use at our resident camps are miserable little hovels that I would not wish on anyone. But even then, I don't see how more than a week of that could be counted.
  18. Call you council office and ask to speak to the Scout Executive (SE). Tell him your story, that your son was beaten on a scout campout and that the unit does not seem to be taking corrective action. (It does not look like you have given them much of an opportunity to do this, but that no longer matters). If the troop leadership is doing their job they have already contacted the SE and reported the incident. In my experience the SE will assign a council director to investigate. At least in our council, this will typically result in the removal of the offending youth from scouting. A criminal complaint may be filed as well. Be advised, just because your son was beaten does not mean that he was not culpable in the matter.
  19. gcnphkr

    Hiking Merit Badge

    Are you insinuating that helicopter parents cannot be trusted? Say it isn't so!
  20. gcnphkr

    Wanted: Scholarly Articles on EDGE

    You would have to be ask the developers to know for sure. The connection to Hersey & Blanchard's leadership model is obvious and it looks like the "training" model is shoe-horned onto that. Even the Trainer's EDGE has very little about the training method. This came from a school of business not a school of education.(This message has been edited by jet526)
  21. gcnphkr

    Hiking Merit Badge

    They do not need to be Scout hikes. They do need to be hikes approved by the MB Counselor. Scouts encourage the buddy system, ideally with 2 sets of buddies. I don't recall it being a rule, but would certainly recommend a minimum of 4. That allows someone to stay with an injured member of the party with the other two still having a buddy.
  22. gcnphkr

    Wanted: Scholarly Articles on EDGE

    EDGE is based on Tuckman's (through Hersey & Blanchard) team development model (Forming, Storming, Norming and Performing). Where each step is based on the leader's role in the team at a particular stage (Telling, Selling, Participating and Delegating). I suspect that EDGE itself is a BSA thing to avoid royalties, as I have not encountered it anywhere else. Look for Situational Leadership and you should find some things. I do wish that both the Trainer's EDGE and WB would include a bibliography.
  23. gcnphkr

    My Scouting

    Every 3 years? Even Blanchard only puts out a new book every 4-5 years. hmmm...There was a revision in October of '09, I took it in April of '09. Just glancing through it looks the same, I'd have to do a text comparison to find the changes but they have to be very minor indeed. Considering it is only required for WB/NYLT staff, you would think they could cover the changes in WB prep. "It is meant to supplement the practice offered through Wood Badge and NYLT staff development, with a focus on the participant, while raising the level of skill a trainer brings to the staff experience."
  24. gcnphkr

    Selecting Adult to OA

    SP: Service to the lodge takes many forms. I may go to an ordeal a year and the occasional chapter meeting. I've never been to a lodge activity other than a banquet. What I do is support the OA in the unit. Run a program that produces a few arrowmen each year and hosts a couple ceremony teams. I only wear my sash at OA functions as I rarely represent the lodge any other time.
  25. gcnphkr

    Hmmm...anti-kudos.

    Considering that it was a wonderful day on Saturday, sunny with the high above 75, I would be surpised if the scout didn't decide to go for a dip to cool off. I certainly would have been willing to give it a go based on how warm it was where we were.
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