Sayre’s Law says: “In any dispute, the intensity of feeling is inversely proportional to the value of the issues at stake.” Or, as it is often remembered, sometimes as a Henry Kissinger quotation, sometimes as a gloss on something Woodrow Wilson reportedly said as president of Princeton University: “Academic politics are so bitter because the stakes are so low.” Contrasted with academe are those venues of decision-making in which matters of real consequence are decided, making it easy to disregard minor slights rather than nurse them for decades: corporate boardrooms, centers of high finance, military situation rooms, and—once upon a time—the halls of Congress.

Image credit: zimmytws