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Posts posted by Jameson76

  1. 1 hour ago, Eagle94-A1 said:

    I am already having challenges with national's new fee. Charge my son for his Eagle application, and you can kiss not only FOS, but all participation in district/council level activities, except for free ones, goodbye.

    Some of us are already on that train and well down the tracks.


    • Upvote 1
  2. Depends on the troop and the experience.  We backpacked one time as a tropical storm was heading into the area the day we hiked out.  I knew we could take a developed road out to the vehicles and there was a shelter at the campsite.  We had a a good day on Saturday; hiked, camped, and explored.  The rains came during the night.  We knew it was not going to be cold and the hike out was only a couple of miles.

    The hike out in the pouring rain was epic.  Scouts has a fun, we got a little wet.  Loaded up and headed out.

    Key was we knew what was coming and when.  I would not have gone out if the storm was coming in the day we were hiking in, too many issues with wind and trees.


  3. These quotes (if accurate) fill me with confidence

         "What will we recommend?" Surbaugh wrote. "Frankly, I'm not sure."

         "And, don’t even get me started on all the abuse I get from those who don’t like any of this because it’s not fully co-ed," Surbaugh wrote.

         "Any miscellaneous garbage that comes out of this office will 'face the wrath of the dark side of the force,''' he wrote.

    Also...the "family" things rears it's ugly head again

         gave an option for members to choose a "family troop" that would contain both all-boy patrols and all-girl patrols.

    This pretty much sums it up...

         However, Surbaugh's email suggests that the board is still unclear about the "philosophy and program design" for welcoming older girls in Boy Scouts troops.

    Train is rolling down the tracks, the conductor has no idea where it will stop or how it got in this set of track, no idea where the stations are, and sadly no idea where the passengers are hoping to go

    • Upvote 2
  4. We rotate through a few of the Eagle required with some specific classes outside the meetings every couple of years.  Cit in the Community, Personal Management, Family Life.  Scouts do most of the work outside the class.  Class is really a time to check on how they are are doing, what needs to be done. Each MB has some specific instruction needed.  Just coming to the classes will not earn the MB.  They have to do and present the work, do the time period tracking etc.

    As noted if scouts are active there are multiple opportunities for advancement. 


  5. 3 minutes ago, David CO said:

    My concern is one of privacy. Not all parents meet the requirements for membership.  I would not want to draw attention to the fact that a scout's parent is not eligible to be a scout leader. 



    Come on now, having those bank robbers and other miscreants around the campfire will up the bar on conversation.  "So Mr Smith, how easy was it to evade the FBI?"

    • Haha 1
  6. On 1/8/2018 at 3:33 PM, oldbuzzard said:

    I've played that game as a kid and it was lots of fun but you can't use that name in the US. In the UK it is harmless, but here that name would be seen as referencing capital punishment and at least at our CO , pretty quickly get the COR and IH involved as violating  our churches moral principles.


    Edit: I don't  remember what we called it but it should be easy to rename... flaming tree, bottomless pit whatever....

    We play that game but call it the trash can game.  Use a 50 gallon trash can and the scouts drag each other to "touch" the can.  Touch being you drag each other to violently interact with the trash can.  Great times.  

  7. 1 minute ago, Tampa Turtle said:

    @Jameson76 I get the 'true believer' in the middle of chaos thing...I think Scouting in the U.S. will survive even if BSA may not...but a downside will be that we ALL will be branded with whatever poor behavior any family units might do at parks, etc. Boy Scouts already have a mixed reputation with a lot of rangers.

    In addition there were more push-back from parents when you try to do a traditional program because the troop they were at before the move seemed like it did a totally different program.

    Absolutely spot on.  We are going down the fortress of solitude path. 

    There are two packs at the CO.  One is (was??) embracing the addition of girls into the pack, but not sure how that will be done.  One is not.   We are not 100% sure about the annual Webelos visitation in the fall, not sure if there will be any girls.  Key is we will set the bar that yes they can visit, but they cannot join this particular troop. 

    As the large troop in the area we are planning to continue business as usual.  If the CO wants to sponsor and start a BS4G troop, enjoy.  Our position at this time is that would in fact be a separate unit.  There was a Venture crew at the CO and the advisor wanted to dual register all of our older scouts to keep the charter.  Our feedback was that's great, but that will be the scouts decision, and you will need some program for them.  As they had no members, it was a tough sell.   Same will be if there is a BS4G unit.  If they need leaders, they will need to recruit leaders, get trained, and enjoy their scouting journey.  No paper leaders

  8. 53 minutes ago, Stosh said:

    So the program continues to escalate from boys, to boys and their siblings down to kindergarten level , to all girls but in separate dens/troops, to moms, dads, step-moms, step-dads, aunts, uncles, grandparents, and siblings of grandchildren and we still call it Boy Scouts?  Some of these people are covered by insurance, some are not.  Some of these people are YPT trained, some are not.  And so who's getting dumped with sorting all of this out?  TADAAAH!  The Scoutmaster.  So, to go from taking small groups of boys out on activities with another scouter, the expectation is now to ........   Really?

    This ain't Kansas anymore..... Mr. Barnum.

    Honestly it will become a movement of many types of units.  (talking the 11 and older crowd, lord knows what cubs will evolve to).  The family based units will rise and fall, take a lot of care, and will not be scouts as we (well some of us) know it.  There will also be  the BS4G units, these will be new, maybe some experienced scouters, they may be "sister" troops to existing units and these will quietly become co-ed units.

    Then there will be the traditional Boy Scout troops.  Those of us running these and providing Boy Scouts the outdoor program, patrol method, and leadership experiences will continue on.  We will be there, doing monthly outings, weekly meetings, Greenbars and scouts doing the planning.  Already some of these units do not participate in district events, shun the council camporees.  We will take a wait and see what happens attitude for week long summer camps as that develops.

    If you want to find us, come out to the woods.  The scouts will be camped in one area, the few leaders a good bit away.  No families, siblings, or pets.  Vehicles parked a good well out of sight.  Hopefully the troop will be one step above Lord of the Flies running a program that at it's core is designed to fail, so the scouts can learn from that experience.

  9. 29 minutes ago, NJCubScouter said:

    Nothing would stop them if they wanted Eagle to mean different things, but I think they want Eagle to only mean one thing.  To date I have seen nothing from National that suggests otherwise, 

    But, as the day is not over, one can never tell with BSA National.  They do seem to sort of do what they want.  In this case maybe, just maybe, they will do a survey, then based on the unpublished results of the survey (questions and/or answers) make a proclamation that all the work done prior to being officially allowed in the scouts can in fact be counted so as to clear the road.  This will be done because XX% of those surveyed, even though they are not in the program, feel that a program such as the Boy Scouts of America (NOTE - Current name and subject to change based on survey results) should allow exceptions for the heretofore excluded class known as girls.  Also they might join a group that undertook such an action

    While sounding far fetched right now, check back in 12 months

  10. 40 minutes ago, Tampa Turtle said:

    OK so we are all living on the same planet. I feel better....I am not crazy. Yes we are experiencing that same blurring of the lines.

    My son mentioned one cause in our Troop. We used to have a 15 passenger van we shared with our Troop. Could pull a small trailer with the two required adults and 13 boys which sufficed for some trips. 

    Then we had to stop using the van and the church and the troop did not have the funds to replace it so we needed dads (and a few moms) for transport. (we do reimburse for gas and since many are trucks it increased each campers cost more than what you thought) to help transport gear and boys. Most of the dads had trucks than minivans and then we had a lot more vehicles and parents at the campsite. And some of these dads liked to camp like they did on their own...not exactly 'car camping' but more like 'truck camping'...a bit gear heavy.

    (I never saw so many fit guys 20 years younger than me that insisted that they HAD to have a cot because sleeping on the ground was too hard...which led to bigger tents to hold the cot...which led to the trucks being close to the campsite and they didn't want to carry stuff far. I mean I even try to backpack my gear in even if it is just from parking lot to campsite mostly because I am too lazy to make another trip)

    Some of these dads dropped out after a couple trips because their kind of camping was enhanced by the BSA verboten beer. And a few mom's stepped in to help out and you know it is kind of a long round trip to not stay the night and if they are staying the night they should bring little sister (and sometimes the dog).

    And voila! Family Camping. While the parents-not really scouters are camping in the 'adult' area/campsite it GREATLY impacts the experience for the Boys and Scouters. I spend all my time explaining while we are ignoring the boys. The boys and fellow scouter personalities  are enough work, throwing in a bunch of parents with time on their hands is a bit much. 

    Maybe we are just waaay old school, but I can (and have seen) how what you describe can happen.  We are not that kind of troop.

    We do have to engage drivers.  While we there is reimbursement, in the last 10 years nobody has asked for it.  Note we have 30 - 40 scouts attend outings, so 8 - 10 cars each trip.  Usually mostly leaders but a few spare ones for transport.  Mostly we recommend deducting the mileage.  We do have moms drive and some non camping dads.  Clear emphasis is to get them unloaded and back on their way asap.  That being said we typically can camp within 2 hours or less of drive from CO parking lot.  There are the longer summer camps and (upcoming) winter trips

    Expectation is all vehicles out of camp area for the weekend.  Even if only 50 yards in a parking area, get the cars out of camp.  Only exception is the vehicle with the trailer.  No dogs / beer / siblings / etc.  If we leaders can setup where they cannot see the scouts, que beuno.  We were doing a wide game one campout.  The scouts were maybe 1/3 mile way down the road, clearly out of site and sound.  We packed up on Sunday morning and then debated should we just leave as the ride back would be quieter.  We conceded to go get the troop.  Drove around the bend, camp was down, gear was lined up, and scouts were out policing up the field of play.  Love it when a plan comes together.


    • Upvote 1
  11. 8 minutes ago, WisconsinMomma said:

    As far as I can tell the request has been respectful and courteous.  Different people have different styles, some are rule followers, and some are change agents.  It's all OK.   My opinion would change if the girl or her family starts trashing the BSA and behaves poorly, but I don't think anything is wrong with a polite request either.

    Well...except for Daddy Ireland

    Her father, corporate attorney Gary Ireland, slammed the BSA for this.

    “It is outrageous and embarrassing that the Scouts will ban local young women from participating, particularly as we are the host country,” he said. “Scouts need to be a certain age and rank to attend a Jamboree. With the Boy Scouts allowing girls into the program very soon, it is unclear why they continue to refuse admission to Sydney.”

    As has been noted there are a myriad or ways for her to attend the World Jamboree.  But that is just the straw man argument


    • Upvote 2
  12. It is an interesting document.  I have worked with it with son who earned Eagle (my word that was an adventure in and of itself) and with numerous scouts in the troop.  Yes it is repetitive, but it is really several forms, rolled into 1. 

    - What are you thinking about doing?

    - What is your plan for doing that?

    - What did you do?

    Could it be a simpler format, possibly.  At a high level it does give some consistency to presentation so each Eagle candidate is not reinventing the wheel.  Even in it's current state the scout can be brief or be wordy.  Working with 1 scout he was hung up on writing up what he did, yet there were a lot of pictures from the project.  In the end he had 5 or 6 pages of pictures with captions, worked for him.  Another scout literally did a 500 word theme about the project with few photos.

    There are some clear formats for the signatures and who does need to sign the approval and project plan, so that is mapped out.

  13. 2 minutes ago, Stosh said:

    So does that mean transgender girls go in which Cub den?  

    Pandora's Box is opened, have fun with that.

    In theory they would go into the Den of the gender that they self identify as.  (not sure I got all my pronouns correct, but it is what it is).  To your pandora's box reference, one would assume if a biological female self identified as a male, they could join a current troop right now.  No doubt that is currently happening somewhere even as we discuss this

  14. 4 hours ago, WisconsinMomma said:

    I was speaking to a parent the other day about school stuff and raising kids, and teens, etc. etc. and I asked, you have the two boys and your oldest is a daughter, right?  She said -- actually my oldest is nonbinary, so we use different pronouns. 


    It is in fact a brave new world.  You know, not to threadjack here, I do find it interesting that for the most part youth under the age of 16 cannot vote, get credit, drive by themselves, fly unattended, join the military, get married, decide on most medical procedures, own guns, enter into contracts, in some places wander about by themselves, decide if they want to go to school, or do a myriad of things that those 18 and over can freely do.  The reasons usually given center on maturity, responsibility, experience, knowledge, etc.  However, if a 10 year old determines they do not want to be their biological sex, but are really "something else", hey no issue, you go right ahead and enjoy this potentially life changing impacting decision. 

  15. 4 hours ago, Eagle1993 said:

    If there is any question about BSA’s financial status I think this answers it.  The combination of cutting a pension benefit, huge increase in annual membership fee and  admitting girls seems to point to a cash concern.  I think the 2017 annual report will be an interesting read (2016 looked like a disaster).   I expect massive council consolidation (similar to Michigan) as the cost cutting continues.   I hope BSA finds a way to financial health soon.

    I’m impressed with my DE and the amount of time he works.  Sad to see this benefit go away.


    Well....when you spend heewge sums of cash on the giant white elephant know as Summit, eventually the poor decisions will come back to haunt you.  Literally the National BSA has mortgaged it's future on SBR.  Not sure what tea leaves were read that there was massive unfulfilled desire for justifying the development.  Curious what attendance figures would be needed to even break even on the debt service.

    The real amount spent was likely north of $500MM to $750MM (that's cash american).  Also there is a large bond payment of hundreds of millions looming out there in the next several years.  Couple that with steep rises in liability insurance, untold minions on the BSA National (not to be confused with the local councils) payroll and it is a recipe for disaster.  

    To say the 2016 annual report looked like a disaster is an understatement.  You really had to read all the way to the details to get the full story.

    But hey, there are girls entering the program, so bingo, new revenue stream and everything will work out...no need to address the real issues.

    • Upvote 4
  16. 1 hour ago, qwazse said:

    What in the scouter-verse is going to take more than 12 monts?

    Its the same program. Either a CO will have put in for the charter or not. BSA had better make this work with everyone's current cycle of rechartering, or they will lose scouters over the wasted time.

    I too wondered.  Run a quick word search on the book...change He to They and let's move on. 

    That being said, maybe there are more tweaks to put in so as to embrace the new "Family" emphasis.  I can see the shocked faces, but maybe our CSE and crowd have not fully disclosed all the coming changes

  17. 16 hours ago, NJCubScouter said:

    I also was not aware that my council had a "Vice President for Family Scouting."  Which is more evidence that the BSA is NOT de-emphasizing the term "family scouting," by which they mean only the sons-and-daughters part of the family.  They don't seem to understand what "family" means in normal, non-jargonized English.

    Vice President for Family Scouting - Those oranges are not slicing themselves and the participation ranks will not award themselves...somebody has to take the lead

    The emphasis on "Family" which appears to be the new buzzword for success (articles in Scouting magazine and Boys Life) is what will no doubt cause much confusion and derision in the next 24 months.  There is no real definition on what it means and if you question what it means one may be accused of not living up to the Scout Oath and Law

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