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FireStone

Putting the pieces together - Where are we headed?

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17 minutes ago, gblotter said:

Show me the photo of you wearing that red beret.

How about Maroon?

Real men wear berets. :D

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There will be additional membership and unit losses that are council or grant funded, Scoutreach, Boys and Girls Clubs, after school programs.  The more the membership fees increase the harder it is to find funding. Don’t forget that many councils pay paraprofessionals to be the leader for those units.

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15 minutes ago, FireStone said:

The BSA can live on as a volunteer-only scouting org, like others around the world. Under 100,000 members we could keep right on scouting along. We just can't sustain the bloat of the big salaries, SBR debts, etc. ...

The BSA specifically can endure, but not if we lose a lot of members and National isn't willing to change their business model to something more thrifty.

Summit debt is the key factor.

Bloated salaries for BSA brass are nothing compared to debt for SBR. Eliminate all BSA executives and the SBR problem still does not go away. I don't know how the debt is structured. If/when SBR goes down, are other parts of BSA insulated to keep the ship afloat - or do they start coming after Philmont and office buildings in Irving? I have no idea.

24 minutes ago, FireStone said:

I don't believe it will come to that, I have faith in our new trajectory and that this thing will work in it's new configuration.

That question will be answered soon enough. If BSA does indeed survive, the new configuration will bear little resemblance to the Scouting we have known in the past. Some may cheer these changes as being long overdue, but I find it all very sad to watch such an icon of American culture unravel like this.

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4 minutes ago, gblotter said:

...That question will be answered soon enough. If BSA does indeed survive, the new configuration will bear little resemblance to the Scouting we have known in the past...

 

I still have yet to hear of any change in program or requirements, ranks, badges, activities, etc., so as far as I can see, things still look pretty much the same. I don't think that a girl in BSA uniform makes the BSA unrecognizable.

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34 minutes ago, carebear3895 said:

I also think your going to see a lot of council camps close. National has made it no secret they think the BSA owns way too much property. I predict more than half of council properties will try to be sold off. 

BSA National can declare that council-owned camp properties do not meet standards, but they cannot force a sale, can they?

Speaking of our council only, we have three camp properties where only two are needed. One crumbling camp sits mostly idle - even during the summer camping months. That camp gets rented out to all sorts of non-BSA groups, providing just enough revenue to keep the camp going but not enough revenue to make it an attractive, thriving property. It depresses me to go there because it's decaying hodgepodge of 1960s structures are a maintenance nightmare.

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2 minutes ago, gblotter said:

BSA National can declare that council-owned camp properties do not meet standards, but they cannot force a sale, can they?

you'd be surprised...National, Region, and Area executives can't force a sale, but they can be very "persuasive" to Scout Executives and exec boards

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8 minutes ago, FireStone said:

I still have yet to hear of any change in program or requirements, ranks, badges, activities, etc., so as far as I can see, things still look pretty much the same. I don't think that a girl in BSA uniform makes the BSA unrecognizable.

The frog has been on the stove for some time now.

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52 minutes ago, walk in the woods said:

Maybe, but it takes real courage to wear one of these in public :).

us-navy-sailor-gob-hat-dixie-cup-white-mcguire-army-navy-military-surplus.jpg

"I LOVE YOU DIXIE CUP.... I'LL NEVER FORGET YOU DIXIE CUP...."

 

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18 minutes ago, carebear3895 said:

you'd be surprised...National, Region, and Area executives can't force a sale, but they can be very "persuasive" to Scout Executives and exec boards

 

Especially when they declare a camp does not meet NCAP standards, and they can no longer use it, thus removing any revenue.

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1 hour ago, walk in the woods said:

I'm just thinking it will trigger a lack of critical mass in the intermountain west that will be larger than expected.

A loss of 80 percent of Scouts and units is expected for the LDS-heavy councils of the intermountain west. You predict more than that?

It is hard for me to imagine a path forward for some of those councils, and consolidations seem inevitable. Somehow folks are able to put the pieces back together after a Cat-5 hurricane.

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17 minutes ago, gblotter said:

A loss of 80 percent of Scouts and units is expected for the LDS-heavy councils of the intermountain west. You predict more than that?

It is hard for me to imagine a path forward for some of those councils, and consolidations seem inevitable. Somehow folks are able to put the pieces back together after a Cat-5 hurricane.

Fear is probably the closer emotion.  My scenario is 80% membership loss and FOS loss  drives consolidation.  Which drives cost cuts which drives service reductions.  Community units get less attention.  Their favorite camps get sold.  Attitudes wane.  The LDS subsidized scouting from AS to ID.  I don't see a replacement.  IDK what the critical mass is but it's not clear to me that any council easily survives even a 10 or 15% immediate membership drop.

Beyond that  I think conservatives in the vast red middle of the country will check out.  Not immediately but in a couple years. The old guard will slowly retire which isnt a bad thing neccessarily but i have limited confidence a new guard will arise.

I was SM for a rural troop.  My boys found the BSA restrictions on rifle ranges, ATVs, laser tag et.  al. absurd.  They already did all those things with their dad or uncle or on their own or with a church youth group.  How am I supposed to explain to a kid whose been farming for 4 years he can't drive a tractor at a conclave or run a log splitter because he's only 17 and untrained?  I expect more of these kinds of things moving forward and decreased relevance for BSA, especially if they start down the ISP trail. The tipping poi t for boys will be way lower than for scouters. 

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5 hours ago, FireStone said:

Putting aside the doom-and-gloom ideas for a moment, let's think about what this all looks like in a few years, or maybe a decade, if all of the changes don't sink the BSA.

What I have quoted above is the first sentence of this thread.  FireStone asked that in this discussion, we PUT ASIDE the doom and gloom.  I see later posts here where the doom and gloom has not remained off to the side, but is front-and-center. There are many, many other threads where doom and gloom is the order of the day.  (Just as an aside, don't people get tired of that?  Day after day, week after week of the sky is falling?  Even if I thought the sky were falling, at some point I would get tired of saying it.  Of course, I know that a couple of people are already thinking, See, there he goes again, the jackbooted moderator trying to stifle discussion, so for the record, I am not trying to stifle discussion, and I never have.  I am mainly expressing puzzlement.)

Where was I?  Oh yes, I was about to strongly suggest that we honor our fellow forum member's request and keep the discussion within the bounds that he has suggested.  We don't have a specific rule in this forum that you have to honor such a request.*  But I think it is the Friendly and Courteous thing to do.  As I said, there are many other threads that have the dark rain clouds hovering over them.  No need to bring the stormy weather in here as well.

*Over the years there have been a few "experiments" in keeping a particular thread very narrowly focused, in which the person who wanted to start the thread made advance arrangements with the moderators, and the moderators enforced those limitations.  But it would be very difficult to make that an everyday thing.

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