Archive for January, 2009

Waite Phillips On Leadership

January 25, 2009

Through the years, many things have been said about leadership but few have put it as precisely and as accurately as Waite Phillips, donor of Philmont Scout Ranch, when he said:

The boss drives his men;
the leader coaches them.

The boss inspires fear;
the leader inspires enthusiasm.

The boss says “I”;
the leader says “We.”

The boss assigns tasks;
the leader sets the pace.

The boss says “Get here on time!”;
the leader gets there ahead of time.

The boss fixes blame for the breakdown;
the leader fixes the breakdown.

The boss knows how it’s done;
the leader shows how.

The boss makes work a drudgery;
the leader makes it a game.

The boss says “Go!”;
the leader says “Let’s go!”

The world needs leaders,
but nobody wants a boss.


Scoutmaster Minute 25 Jan 09

An Assistant Scoutmaster gave me this from his Wood Badge Troop Guide material.  I may have it in my binder, it sounds familiar, but I didn’t find it there.  My only regret as a Scout was never taking a trek at Philmont.  I’ve hiked many trails in the Rockies since, but Philmont, that would be something.

Used to be an Owl, a good old Owl, too…


Scout in Chief

January 22, 2009

Once upon a time, Barack Hussein Obama was a Cub Scout when he lived in Indonesia.  There are 28 million Scouts worldwide today; 8 million of those Scouts are in Indonesia, compared to almost 6 million in the United States.  

Say what I will about our Socialist-in-Chief, I hold onto a small piece of hope that something in BHO’s Scouting experience may temper his baser instincts.  I saw a reference here to a Brit blogger who gives us a Scout Assoc. of the UK press release with the details.

President Gerald Ford was an Eagle Scout and several other Presidents were involved in Scouting throughout their lives.  The President of the United States is also the honory head of the Boy Scouts of America, although some liberal special interest groups have been urging BHO to decline this honor.  So far the BSA has been pretty quiet on the subject.

The Dallas Morning News reports on Gov. Rick Perry‘s welcome to the former occupant on his  return to Texas after the inaugaration:

Tuesday, the man elevated into the job as governor when Bush became president recalled how Bush urged him to keep the state in good shape for his return.

“He looked me in the eye before he left and said, ‘Perry, I want you to be a good Boy Scout. And Boy Scouts leave their camp better than they found it,’ ” Perry said. “Texas is a better place than when George left it.”

We will see how the current Scout in Chief leaves his camp in turn.

EXTRA Curriculars

January 18, 2009

They’re called “Extra-Curricular” sports for a reason.  The bankrupt Minneapolis Star-Tribune stirs up trouble with an article today:

School sports now a Minnesota luxury?

“Cut from the team” means something different in these economic times. Extracurricular activities are hurting.

The economic crunch is coming to high school sports.

Faced with budget problems, some schools are raising fees while cutting back on equipment, transportation and other expenses. Others are voluntarily cutting back on the number of games their teams play.

In early February, the Minnesota State High School League could decide to make reduced schedules mandatory starting in the 2009-10 school year as a way to save money.

Administrators use words like “bleak” and “troubling” to describe the outlook for high school activities….

My wife disagrees with me vehemently on the role of sports in school.  She is quiet persuasive.  For kids that are not on the Honor Role, eligibility for sports can be an incentive to sit through the drudgery of a public school education.

And truth be told, yes, I do agree that rising activity fees means it can be very difficult for middle class kids to participate throughout the year.  My wife’s kids play softball, baseball, basketball, and football; they participate in cheer leading and choir.  On top of their hefty activity fees, parents are expected to pay to get into games and concerts (yes, they charge for high school and junior high choir concerts, too).

I also agree: a well-rounded education requires a broad exposure to the arts and sciences in addition to core academics.

I am a long-time participant and advocate of Scouting for youth.  It is a game with a purpose.  However, it would never occur to me to ask the taxpayers of Minnesota to help pay for our Scouting adventure.

Scouting isn’t cheap, but there is value in Scouting and a Scout is Thrifty.  We try to work with families to give our young men the opportunity to earn their way.  We sell popcorn and wreaths.  We work during the County Fair.  Our parents dig deep to send their own sons to summer camp each year and the community supports our Council programs with Friends of Scouting.

In difficult times, we may have to say No.  Sorry, not this year.  I would love to send our Scout to the centennial National Jamboree next year.  That’s not likely to happen no matter how much popcorn he sells.  In times like these, we need to work harder, plan better, save more.  Get back to basics.  Do your best.

JohnScout is a work in progress

January 15, 2009

My primary blog is over at JC  JohnScout is a work in progress, an experiment and a playground.  I’m trying out this and that and the other thing. It’s also a place to aggregate some scouting links, comment on scout stuff and conservation of the great outdoors, and occasionally blow off steam at folks who would denigrate the greatest youth leadership organization this side of your church.

Let me know if you like what you see, or don’t.

Ice Fishing Derby

January 15, 2009

1009 Ice Fishoree patch

Buffalo Ridge District, Sioux Council BSA, sponsored an Ice Fishoree on Lake Shetek, in Murray County, MN, on Saturday 10 January 2009.

Our Roundtable Commissioner initiated the event and we had about 120 Scouts & Volunteers attend. Some even caught fish!

The night before the event, our Cub Scout Pack slept in the Lodge at Camp Shetek with a Pack from Marshall, MN.  The Venture Crew slept outside in a teepee.

Shetek Lodge Fire

The Cubs made ice fishing rigs, watched a movie (Kung Fu Panda), ate pizza, went on a night hike, had a lot of fun. Hope to do it all again next year.


Be Prepared

January 8, 2009
A Scout is Trustworty, Loyal, Helpful, Friendly, Courteous, Kind, Obedient, Cheerful, Thrifty, Brave, Clean and Reverent.

John Shepard
Committee Chair, Pack 25
Scoutmaster, Troop 25
Buffalo Ridge District, Sioux Council
“Used to be an Owl, a good old Owl, too”