Harsh words you are using. I don't agree. I am one of these impressionably underqualified, and can't find anything dangerous with this technique. If you fail, you swim back home (you should practice kite packing in water before and be able to do it in deep water). If a gust hit, it is safer in the water than on land. In particular where I live in Switzerland, most spots are very difficult to launch, some are impossible at all to launch on land. Where it is impossible to launch, it is either starting the kite from water or not kiting (if starting from boat is no option). And drift launch with LEI is also virtually impossible (some do it though but legal wise it is a grey zone).
Okay, I see your point. I remember that in the written description of the technique, maybe only in German, it is clearly said that you have to practice it before, at first on land, then in knee deep water. Also different mentality: in the US people are constantly warned against risks that are obvious, and lots of interdictions to protect people from themselves. In Europe, we are tired of all these warnings and disclaimers. Yes, Kitesport is dangerous, I don't think there is anybody out there who doesn't know that.
Heck yeah. Jump off the boat.
No in deed, packing is the base of everything.
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