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Everything posted by TAHAWK

  1. From my personal experience, given the support and help of adults that Scouting presumes, Scouts can do most anything required to plan and lead a troop program. As has been said here many times in different words by different posters, the problem comes when the adults don't let go. What do the boys do? The troop I work with now just had a Court of Honor. The event was planned and led by the Scout leaders. The Scoutmaster was the only Scouter who spoke, and he contributed a Scoutmaster's Minute when called upon by the SPL. Somewhere in the background at some point, I know the Scoutmast
  2. Our Lodge cancelled both Spring and Fall events in 2010 and has perhaps twenty active youth members - according to the Lodge Advisor. It has never been strong or a significant factor in our council. It did not meet for about twenty-five years after it was chartered - so low number and short, sad history. The new Lodge Advisor is a fine person with a good heart and may change things against all odds. When it became too easy to get in, I think it lost something - being "special."
  3. Our two best DE's -- no -- our two excellent DE's have left in the last three months only, they say, because the new jobs paid much more for much shorter hours that allowed them to be husbands and fathers. The gain they and their respective families enjoyed was at a loss to Scouting here. Turnover is predictable when so many take the job as a last resort, intending to move on ASAP. That also has a very Darwinian impact on the quality of paid Scouters as a group. Of our last four SE's (thirty-four years), two were involuntarily separated and one I described above. Not too inspiring
  4. The council to our east, which once was three councils, has reached the point that it cannot afford DE's, so there aren't any - four total employees in the "council." Or is it five? Discussions are going on about rolling most of the council into the council where I do most of my Scouting. This could be good or Sears and K-mart. The beginning of finding solutions is admitting there is a problem. But all I see and hear is happy talk and spin. Perhaps that is a reflection of the lack of ability at the level where national policy is made. Lord knows they seem quite certain in their omnisc
  5. "Frankly, I don't believe it happens, but it makes a good story." This is me caring whether you believe or not. (^___^)
  6. The fees for our "honorary" troops are paid by the adults at the respective CO's who want to see the troops "continue." I have not discussed with any of these gentlemen what the end game might be. As for the fees for the phantom units and troops, someone was paying the fees. I personally examined rechartering papers for units that had every single name on the document forged. One "Scoutmaster" had been dead five years. One "Cubmaster" wanted to sue the DE who forged her signature.
  7. Abel, thank you. The story about the small council came from a council officer (and he may believe the story.). I took your advice and find it is a much bigger council than ours. So, while he is not a region No. 2, he is doubtless getting more pay where he is now than he did here. As for our "honorary" troops, there are youth registered and adults as well for each, but it is well-known that they do not meet. One may wonder about the practical purpose of the corporation, as distinct from the volunteers.
  8. The camp we are attending requires at least 30 days notice that you intend to use your own tents (like those that keep skeeters out) or they fine you $30 per private tent. I guess when you are otherwise successful and filled up you can start whipping the customers into line.
  9. Abel, he left to be No. 2 in a region. When regional offices closed, he was not beamed up to Texas and is now SE of a small council. Phantom youth and units are common practices among paid Scouters. The financing of those phantoms even has a traditional name" "Digging deep for Scouting." Our council has had two SE's fired over this practice, but BSA is like the Inspector in Casablanca": BSA is shocked, shocked, that this goes on year after year, council after council. Meanwhile, BSA has non-Scouting programs that "serve youth" to pump up numbers for United Way. (The word "fraudulent
  10. (CNN) A National Guard helicopter made a tight landing Tuesday to rescue Boy Scouts who were missing after a weekend camping and hiking trip in an Arkansas national forest, officials said. Early Tuesday, the six Scouts and two leaders from Lafayette, Louisiana, Troop 162 aimed flashlights overhead at the crew of the Arkansas National Guard LUH-72 helicopter. The crew, using night-vision equipment, was searching the Albert Pike Recreation Area in Ouachita National Forest, said National Guard Capt. Chris Heathscott. Heathscott, who was on board the helicopter, said the Scouts app
  11. If we are talking about real units, rather than phantom units or in-school semi-phantom units, three factors are strongly correlated with success: 1. Was the unit properly started, as has been discussed above, with a real, working committee and a sponsoring CO? 2. Does the unit has an active Unit Commissioner who watches for needs and can help with those needs? 3. Are the unit Committee and unit leaders (including youth in Troops and Crews) well-trained, inclusive of a willingness to apply what they are taught? I am thinking about three units that are teetering on the brink
  12. Is not attaining 16 years of age a requirement to be a JASM, or did that change in the last few months?
  13. "I echo quazse's recommendation of looking at what your troop's adult leadership is. If the vision is rank advancement, then keeping Eagle scouts from holding POR's makes sense, as the troop has achieved its aim of making Eagle scouts. If the vision is development of leadership skills, then the troop would allow all eligible scouts to hold any position which will help him develop and improve leadership skills, and even encourage the best to run,. If the vision is a delivering a great outdoors program, then the troop would encourage those that have demonstrated the enthusiasm, skills, and
  14. In the business context addressed by "Situational Leadership" or the Scouting context addressed in Wood Badge, loyalty to organizational norms may be tested. All Scouters supposedly subscribe to the concept of the Patrol Method where the youth plan and lead the program with adults limited to resource, coaching, and mentoring roles except when safety of fundamental values issues arise. Fidelity to that Scouting norm seems to be a problem with many Scouters. As a Roundtable Commissioner I polled units present (47) and found that a decided minority allowed Scouts to elect their PL'
  15. Because the course, inclusive of The Game of Life, has been presented without serious inter-personal problems, such problems are not inherent in the material. However a risk is inherent in any material that may force people to "look in the mirror." That situation should dictate selection of staff solely on the basis of competence.
  16. "Another fiction is that Scouting has 100 pages of rules and regulations." Right you are. It's more than 100 pages. Add Insignia Guide to G2SS and you are past 100 and just getting started. It's what bureaucrats do. ^____^ (This message has been edited by TAHAWK)
  17. Wilderness Survival MBP is a fright. It is filled with wildly incorrect information, information that conflicts with other BSA publications, and sharp internal contradictions. Given that the overt topic is how to stay alive when life is threatened, the poor quality of this publication should be an embarrassment to BSA -- and to Scouting for tolerating BSA's publication of this mess. The original MBP by Olsen was excellent, but dealt with what might be called "primitive living," as contrasted to "modern survival" - how to stay alive short term until rescued. Details on request
  18. Horrors? 1. You ought to be excellent to be a Course Director. But if you become a CD, you are never allowed to have a position of responsibility on a WB staff again. Were there problems with inbreeding? Yes. But this is killing a fly with a nuke. Unreasonably arbitrary and disconnected from any concern about quality. If they were qualified to be CD's, they should be able to serve again in some meaningful capacity. 2. The syllabus was rewritten by BSA to avoid paying royalties to Blanchard and Assoc. More like an exercise in transliteration by those who did not speak the origin
  19. I see a lot of posts about adults making rules. Example: "Yes, a cell phone can be useful (as neil just stated), but so can fixed blade knives, liquid fuel stoves, or any of the other things Troops restrict the use of, because they aren't necessary, and their usefullness [as in original] is outweighed by the issues they cause." This business of adults-banning things raises two issues to me. First, should adults be making rules based on their personal antipathy to certain legally-possessed objects? "It's my troop." Oh, really? It's not the Scouts' troop? The CO's troop? The adults
  20. Fascinating discussion. Cell phones can be distracting. Electronics in general can be distracting. Kids can distract each other. Who made the "zero tolerance" rule? Adults? Not a safety issue. Not a morals or values issue. (Well, there as the vegetarian SM who barred meat on the menu as contrary to the Oath and Law.)
  21. There was once a one-day, district-level basic training for Scout leaders called Junior Leader Orientation Workshop. It presented, in an unrealistically crammed syllabus, the "Leadership Skills" of Wood Badge version two. When the second version of WB went away, and with it "Leadership Skills," the district junior leader training also went away. For years we were told the new district-level syllabus was coming any time. Those unfulfilled promises stopped a couple years ago. Poor move IMO. NYLT is, after all, National YOUTH Leadership Training. A given course either works or it does
  22. Seattle Pioneer, 1, It's the adults who are confused. Kids deal with change just fine. 2. Adults need to know about youth leadership than the kids as the adults are the great threat to to youth leadership. 3. Still raining? Don't mold. Last month I spent in Seattle a Bandanna Slug nearly killed me.
  23. KC9DDI, As I indicated, there is a good deal more flexibility about NYLT than the authoritarian pronouncements may suggest. The language that I quoted - verbatim - still applies to our course. As to the future, I don't know. Only Al Gore et al. can accurately predict the future. I have enough trouble with the past. As to the past, our course last year followed the 2010 syllabus except that we had female participants and the staff presenters did their own PP slides. BDPT00, I assume Scouters work with Venturing because they like that branch of Scouting. I can hardly resp
  24. I'm still not seeing the light here. What I'm reading from TAHAWK in particular is that now there are young ladies on the staff. The terminology and structure you say you're using is that of a troop. OK. I'm listening. What position do these girls hold on the staff? What uniform do they wear? For your model troop meetings, etc, do they say the Scout Oath and Law? Is the patrol and troop structure what they're to take back to their units and lead (as stated by your SE)? What am I missing? BDPT00" It seems some councils are calling it "course" rather than a "troop" and calling the group
  25. "Actually for a very brief time, the new Boy Scout shorts/swimsuit advertised on SCOUTSTUFF.ORG did mention that the new shorts were great 'cause you could run from the waterfront in your Class B's, put on your uniform shirt and be in Class A." Those shorts have been discontinued according to our local Scout Shop. I got a pair at half price. ^___^ I suppose we could call Scout shorts and a T-Shirt a carrot. It's just communication. (^____^)
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