When do you throw in the towel, say "I did my damndest," and walk away? When can you draw the line and give up without sacrificing your principles? I'm talking about politics here but I guess this can apply to a lot of situations.

Thanks for the help, and background information will be given upon request.

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"Choose your battles."  And know your Commander.

If you have God in your life, it wouldn't make sense to throw in the towel for what He wants from you, ever.  It would make sense to throw in all other towels, immediately.  Which shifts the question to:  what does He want from me?  "To win" may be the answer; or maybe it's "to lose and learn something from it" . . . there are so many different options.  Failure on a small battle, or the wrong battle, is sometimes the best way to win the big battle.

If not, well, I'll let someone else answer that.

If this is about struggles with SGA, maybe the problem is that it's _your_ battle, and doesn't need to be.  You could be a foot soldier rather than a general.  Or you could recast it as something other than a conflict.

Good point Will. Learning when we lose can be sometimes better than winning. Reminds me of the Edison quote "I have not failed. I've just found 10,000 ways that won't work."

Thanks for the advice Will. I'll keep it in mind.

Strategic retreat may be the best option for me right now. I never thought of that so thanks for bringing it up.

No good politician has ever asked what is the unbendable core principle that he holds dear.

They are all bendable and none are inviolate. Otherwise he is weak and will be unable to cope with a fluid situation.


It depends on how important, in the big picture, the issue.

If it's something like the tempest in a teapot of Student Government politics posted elsewhere on AoM, you can readily walk away.  There's no real consequence except to your ego.

OTOH, if this is something about the size, scope, or ultimate cost of "rea"l governance, and you're an elected representative, you need to keep fighting the good fight.

If your political disagreement is that of a civil servant who is constantly on the "losing " side of policy set by elected officials that's different, as numerous practical considerations come into play.

Yeah in the long run these political conflicts that I'm embroiled in won't matter, except to maybe sharpen my skill set. In the short term it's extremely frustrating. Thanks for the perspective.

Another episode in the annals of DJ's struggles with his student gov position, in which he plays the principled white knight fighting against the ne'erdowells in the imaginary kingdom in his head?

To quote some old dude that you probably get a little excited thinking about, trying to self-identify with, but whose character you fall short of: "never give in, never give in, never, never, never, never-in nothing, great or small, large or petty - never give in except to convictions of honour and good sense."

Now my son, go forth and create some more drama and then write to us all asking for advice about it, for that is your wont, your way, and your custom.

I think Churchill had a few other gems that may be better for this situation.

"To improve is to change; to be perfect is to change often."


"However beautiful the strategy, you should occasionally look at the results."

I know I can always rely on you to be an ass when I ask questions like this. What's wrong with taking a principled stand on political issues?

I find it ironic that you criticize me for asking this question in the first place, yet you provide an answer. You're not trolling right.

I provided you with a quote from some old guy you probably admire. But just because he said it doesn't mean a magic wand was waved over those words, sanctifying them and making them an eternally true aphorism for the ages.

Or that I think it's the right answer or what I would do or what I recommend you do (all three of which are separate and distinct).

You do with the quote what you want. Since SGA, as others have pointed out, are flaccid, impotent organizations, what you do does not matter.


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