losing battle, a
Also, a losing game. A failing effort or activity. For example, He's fighting a losing battle against putting on weight, or We think his candidacy is a losing game. These expressions, alluding to actual unsuccessful battles or games, have been used figuratively since the early 1600s. Also see lost cause.
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ROME — What does it take for a Hollywood A-lister to get a private audience with Pope Francis?Pope Francis Has the Pleasure of Meeting Angelina Jolie for a Few Seconds|Barbie Latza Nadeau|January 8, 2015|DAILY BEAST
The U.S. military just unveiled a new effort to get Iraqis ready to battle ISIS.Pentagon Insider on New Plan to Fight ISIS: ‘Of Course It’s Not Enough’|Nancy A. Youssef|January 6, 2015|DAILY BEAST
First, as opposition to gay marriage collapses, American anti-LGBT activists will slow their battle against it.
She had been, he says, the backbone of their family and losing her shifted their entire emotional landscape.
But there's a ton of value for me in my background and my history, and losing it would be a shame.
A Yankee, whose face had been mauled in a pot-house brawl, assured General Jackson that he had received his scars in battle.
Now-a-days it is the bankrupt who flouts, and his too confiding creditors who are jeered and laughed at.Glances at Europe|Horace Greeley
Big Reginald took their lives at pool, and pocketed their half-crowns in an easy genial way, which almost made losing a pleasure.The Pit Town Coronet, Volume I (of 3)|Charles James Wills
He felt himself the meanest, vilest thing a-crawl upon this sinful earth, and she—dear God!St. Martin's Summer|Rafael Sabatini
All that scientific bric-a-brac in the cupboard had far better be thrown away.The Salvaging Of Civilisation|H. G. (Herbert George) Wells