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NJCubScouter

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Everything posted by NJCubScouter

  1. NJCubScouter

    Merry Christmas! (I&P Version)

    Merry Christmas to all who celebrate. (Which actually includes me even though I'm Jewish, because my wife is not. I'm not there for the religious elements, but the peace and joy and goodwill etc. stuff transcends religion.)
  2. NJCubScouter

    And so it begins

    That's just speculation, and I don't think it's correct.
  3. NJCubScouter

    And so it begins

    That was Baden-Powell's idea. There is a quotation from him to that effect, which I cannot find right now.
  4. NJCubScouter

    And so it begins

    There are quotations from Baden-Powell that suggest that was his approach as well. He saw religion as important, but apparently did not see it as a bar to membership.
  5. NJCubScouter

    And so it begins

    That makes sense. He was reciting words and explaining what they mean, rather than actually "taking a pledge."
  6. NJCubScouter

    And so it begins

    Ok, good. I am pretty sure that is what the BSA's policy is. I also believe that BSA does not require the wearing of the flag patch by a Scout whose religious beliefs forbid it. Maybe his relative never noticed the flag patch. (Or maybe Jehovah's Witnesses are ok with wearing the flag patch, but I am pretty sure they aren't.)
  7. NJCubScouter

    And so it begins

    (Ok, here I go anyway.) But who is to decide which values "reflect back to god"? You have made clear that in the teaching of your religion, homosexuality is immoral. And yet there are other Christians who do not believe that way. My son's wedding was officiated by an Episcopalian priest, a woman, who is married to another woman. The same division exists within my own religion. There are openly gay Reform rabbis and yet most Orthodox Jews regard homosexuality as a sin. (Predictably, the "middle" movement, Conservative Judaism, is itself deeply divided on the subject.) And every religious person with an opinion on this subject thinks that their viewpoint is consistent with what God wants.
  8. NJCubScouter

    And so it begins

    I agree. He was a person of his time. If he were alive today he would be a person of our time, and his opinions would not necessarily be the same.
  9. NJCubScouter

    And so it begins

    It isn't necessarily anybody's "failure." It's just the way things are.
  10. NJCubScouter

    And so it begins

    I did. I then changed my mind about whether I wanted to discuss it again.
  11. NJCubScouter

    And so it begins

    We have had this exact same discussion several times, it probably is not necessary to have it again right now.
  12. NJCubScouter

    And so it begins

    Does that mean he is required to salute the flag and say the Pledge of Allegiance even though his religion tells him not to? Just out of curiosity, does he wear the American Flag patch on his uniform?
  13. NJCubScouter

    And so it begins

    I'm not sure what that means.
  14. NJCubScouter

    Per WSJ -BSA may declare bankruptcy

    Yes, the back-and-forth needs to stop.
  15. NJCubScouter

    Per WSJ -BSA may declare bankruptcy

    If the BSA files a bankruptcy petition, I wouldn't expect their salary structure for entry-level professionals to improve anytime soon.
  16. NJCubScouter

    Per WSJ -BSA may declare bankruptcy

    Recruiting members from another group is not illegal. Recruiting members from another group by using the other group's trademark is "illegal," not in the criminal sense, but in the civil sense. That is what the lawsuit is about. A court will eventually decide whether the BSA (and/or its councils) violated the GSUSA's trademark rights. Or the BSA and GSUSA will reach a settlement. That's how these things go.
  17. NJCubScouter

    Per WSJ -BSA may declare bankruptcy

    I think that is true. This situation does not necessarily show that current leadership is incompetent. On the other hand, it doesn't show that they are competent, either. As I said before, if the BSA files, and after their schedules are filed, there will be a lot more information by which us, the general rabble, can evaluate (and argue over) what and who the problem really is, and was. And eventually, when the BSA proposes to set up a fund to pay these sex abuse claims, which will result in lower payments than the plaintiffs are looking for, the plaintiffs' attorneys will have their say as well. And if there are any other creditors who are going to get shorted, they will also have their say. If the BSA does file, it is unfortunately going to be quite a spectacle. A lot of council-approved popcorn will be consumed by the spectators. It is not going to end up being a good thing for anybody. But that's the way things go sometimes.
  18. NJCubScouter

    Per WSJ -BSA may declare bankruptcy

    Dire, yes. For a business (which I assume would include a non-profit like the BSA) to file for any kind of bankruptcy, its assets would be less than its liaibilities. The tricky part here is that when a substantial part of your debt is pending and anticipated claims for things that do not have a fixed dollar value (like pain and suffering, emotional distress and disability, etc.), what is your debt, actually? It's an estimate, and different parties to the case may have an interest in doing different estimates. Is Former Scout X's case eventually going to produce a recovery of $2 million against the BSA, or a recovery of zero because a jury decides that X's story is not credible? (Which also makes it tricky to settle a case like that, although most are settled before trial.) Add enough of those 2-million-$ (or more) swings together, and you see the problem of figuring out what your debts are. It's much easier if your business has assets appraised at say $2 million but you have a bank loan of $2.5 million with no dispute as to the amount due, and overdue trade debt of $300,000, and no other debt. You are insolvent and can file a Chapter 11. If in the same scenario the bank loan is $500,000, you're not, and you can't. But that's not even close to being the situation here.
  19. NJCubScouter

    Per WSJ -BSA may declare bankruptcy

    The sad part is, this is exactly what was predicted by some in this forum when this donation was accepted. My recollection is that National thought they would get a good chunk of money by renting out the Summit for events, but there was that tax problem with the State of West Virginia and I am not sure how that got resolved, and I am not sure how much rental income there ended up being. Not nearly as much as they thought, evidently.
  20. NJCubScouter

    Per WSJ -BSA may declare bankruptcy

    It has always been my assumption that BSA National owns Philmont. The question would be whether there is any "restrictive covenant" in the deed by which the property was transferred to the BSA, which seeks to control what the property can and cannot be used for, and what happens if the BSA no longer owns it. [Note after seeing Mashmaster's comment: Ok, I was thinking in the right direction, but not far enough.] I see no reason why Philmont would be any more "immune from divestiture" than any other non-residential property owned by any other person. (Residential property, meaning the home you live in, can be protected, unprotected or partially protected, depending on what state you are in, and the specific financial factors at work in that case.) That's one of the main reasons to file a Chapter 11 - to try to keep your property while getting more time to pay your debts, and often to reduce certain kinds of debts. Sometimes it means that some property will be sold while other property is retained. If you cannot get approval for a reorganization plan, or your reorganization fails for some other reason, you often end up in a "liquidating 11" in which all your property is sold and the proceeds are used to pay creditors. That is what happened to Radio Shack and Toys R Us. They originally filed for reorganization and closed some stores, with the intention of remaining in business as a smaller operation, but it didn't work out and they were liquidated. This is an area of law that I know something about, but I have been withholding general comment because (1) if I had a dime for every company or individual who "might file" but never does, I would be a rich man, and (2) you never really know what's going on until you see the "schedules" that are filed with (or shortly after) the bankruptcy petition. They will list every asset and its value, every debt (both undisputed and disputed), every creditor (including those who have filed lawsuits that are still pending, though in the case of sexual abuse it may not list their full names and the amount of the claim will probably be listed as "unliquidated" - which means, by the way, that we would know how many of these lawsuits there are, which I don't think we know at this point), and either at the beginning or sometime later, every category of income with amounts, and every item of expense, with amounts. This is likely going to be way more information than they put in their public annual financial reports, and way, way more than they would like to disclose.. That's one of the disadvantages to filing bankruptcy, you have to lay out your entire financial life for the public to see, but it's all part of the "deal" in which you can get some relief from your debts and stay in operation.
  21. NJCubScouter

    Girl Scouts Suing the Boy Scouts

    I'm sure the BSA's goal is to increase membership. The gender composition that results is probably of secondary concern.
  22. It has been awhile since I took Troop Committee Challenge, but I just found a syllabus for it online, as well as a version of the Troop Committee Guidebook that is the 2000 printing, but I doubt the fundamentals of how the committee operates have changed since then. They don't say that the committee MUST operate by voting, nor do they say the committee CANNOT operate by voting. The only thing they say about voting is in the negative: SM's and ASM's do not vote. This implies that someone can vote, i.e. committee members, but it does not say what they get to vote on. In fact, the chapter about committee meetings in the Troop Committee Guidebook is surprisingly brief and vague. Someone in this forum once advanced the theory that the BSA intentionally leaves it up to each CO to decide how "democratic" the meetings will be, and in the absence of direction from the CO, how the committee operates is up to the committee itself. I think that is correct. In my troop committee, the committee almost always makes decisions by consensus, but I think that lurking in the background is the understanding that if there is no consensus on a given subject, there will be a vote.
  23. NJCubScouter

    Girl Scouts Suing the Boy Scouts

    Such cynicism in one so young.
  24. NJCubScouter

    Girl Scouts Suing the Boy Scouts

    I would add a fourth criterion: That the new name did not open the BSA up to a very plausible claim of trademark infringement. On that count it is a failure.
  25. NJCubScouter

    Eagle Board of Review (Appeal)

    Latin Scot's DAC is correct about one thing: A unit may not REQUIRE a "troop board of review" for Eagle, as the "preliminary" or "practice" EBOR's are called in my district. I believe that was made clear in the most recent version of the G2A, or maybe the one before that. I see nothing wrong with a troop OFFERING a "practice" EBOR, if it will make the Scout more comfortable. I don't see how a DAC can prohibit it. In fact, I don't see how a DAC, or any district committee chair, can issue any "mandates" to units, on any subject. How are they going to enforce it? Our troop has never done preliminary EBOR's and our Scouts always pass the actual EBOR's with flying colors. It really is a celebration of what the Scout has done. I have heard that there have been Scouts who do "fail" their EBOR's in our district, but I don't see how that happens based on the 15 or so that I have participated in for our troop. The only somewhat "sour note" of any kind that I can recall was when one of our Scouts included in his life goals that if he ever had a son in the Scouts that he would volunteer to be an adult leader, unlike his own father who was an Eagle but never became an adult leader for his son's troop and never did anything to help out. He wrote all that in the thing. I don't think we asked him about it, because what was he going to say, and we were kind of stunned into silence by the fact that the kid had criticized his own father in his Eagle paperwork. Kind of a gutsy move on the kid's part, and he wasn't wrong.
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