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A few comments about 180

March 14, 2016

Recently, my life took a new direction, when I relocated from my childhood home in Precinct 4 where I launched my first RTM campaign, to Precinct 3. Under the terms of the Town Charter, I am permitted to continue to represent Precinct 4 as an RTM until the next regularly scheduled town election, which is when my three-year term in office is slated to expire anyway, but I would have to run for a new term from my new precinct in order to stay in Town Meeting.

Today I am announcing that I will not be a candidate for another term in Town Meeting this year.

I also anticipate discontinuing this blog, 180, this year, but have not decided a specific timeline. The responsibilities of my work in commercial real estate, which I love, do not leave me with as much time to devote to this blog as I would like. Blogs are only successful if they are regularly maintained. If my time commitments become more flexible going forward, I may choose to continue 180, but this remains to be seen.

I intend to continue to serve in the other civic capacities that I am involved in, such as Capital Budget Committee, Historical Society, and Historical Commission. These committees have given me the opportunity to channel my passions toward specific causes that I care about – on the Capital Budget Committee, directly having an impact on reforming town spending; and focusing on historical preservation as a Commissioner and Historical Society Director. I may also return to Town Meeting one day in the future, if the time is right, and if the chance to make a difference is available.

I came to the decision not to run again last summer, and spent the months since then wrestling with whether I had made the right choice. Over this time, I have concluded that I made the right decision.

First, I have become exhausted and tired of the pressures of Walpole town politics. The longer I have been involved in town politics, the more I have come to despise the backstabbing, grudge matches, vendettas, special interests, political games, and police intimidation. I want nothing to do with it anymore.

For more than five years, I have had a target on my back. I now want to step away from the limelight, stop making enemies, and work in a more behind-the-scenes role to advance the issues I care about. I will still be around, and active, but I’m not going to be on the front-lines.

I have also come to realize that while I love politics in general, I personally am not a natural politician. Politics is very much a bloodsport, and I know this first-hand. After many years of relentless campaigns, I have discovered that I actually don’t particularly enjoy asking people for their vote, or talking about myself to win political support. Instead, I thrive when I’m in the background, supporting others who are willing to make the sacrifices to run for office.

Not everything about Walpole politics is bad, of course. This is a wonderful town, and it has been good to me. There are many great people who have chosen to get involved for all the right reasons, which is why our town is going in a new, more positive direction now. I am proud to consider some of these individuals my closest friends, mentors, and confidantes. I wish them all the best in their continued fight for good government that is accountable and responsive to the people. I am not abandoning the cause, so much as I fully intend to work with them in a different capacity. The fight is worth fighting.

Walking away from this successful blog, too, is hard. I hope 180 readers will find alternate sources of information, and will continue to stay involved and informed. Only by continually asking tough questions, and holding decision-makers accountable, can you bring about reforms in your government. Don’t ever forget that government belongs to YOU, the citizen and taxpayer, and NOT the politicians.

I will do my very best to keep the people informed about their government as long as I live in Walpole.

I will sum up by quoting Teddy Roosevelt:

“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.”

Thank you for everything!

— Sam

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4 Comments leave one →
  1. March 14, 2016 10:09 AM

    Good luck in your new focus Sam. I have enjoyed your blog and hope you come back to it in the future. But stepping away from politics to recharge can be a good thing!

  2. Cameron Daley permalink
    March 14, 2016 10:30 AM

    There is no other true source of information as to what is really going on in Walpole. I sincerely hope you keep on with your Blog. If not I wish you the best.

  3. March 14, 2016 11:33 AM

    Sam, Thanks for fighting the good fight. I know it must get tiring sometimes. Best of luck from down here in South Carolina.

  4. Allan Cameron permalink
    May 11, 2016 10:20 PM

    Congratulations Sam. I wish you lots of success in your profession. I will miss your tenacity and perspective.

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