Compromise is a curious creature. In private life it suggests maturity, a willingness to concede for the sake of harmony. In business and diplomacy it can be ambiguous. In politics, particularly British politics, it connotes weakness, and that simply won't do.
The pervs are everywhere - under the bed, in the gym, in the classroom, in a chatroom near you. The message to parents in the lurid newspaper headlines is that it is no longer safe to send your children to school.
Tony Blair gambled spectacularly and has lost spectacularly. He told his MPs it was their duty to follow his lead and they have defied him. A prime minister who emerged badly battered from the general election campaign is now in deep trouble.
For all the accusations of hubris, there is something lugubrious about Tony Blair's view of the human condition. The British people seem to have little sense of their place in the world beyond uncritical support for America.
So you want to make a difference to the world? You're bored of your books, fed up with politicians, and the only "party" you're interested in is at the union bar. Around a table of beers, you and your friends vow to do something.