The Land of Counterpane by Jessie Wilcox Smith
(from a poem by Robert Louis Stevenson)
...I'm running a simulation.
I am always suspicious of players who claim that wargames, particularly toy soldier wargames, are simulations. Maybe I'm overly conscientious but it always seems to me to be trying to add a spurious legitimacy to something that is just shockingly good fun.
Its rather like trying to tell your father that you're not really going to a rock concert to enjoy yourself, but rather to learn something very important for your upcoming music exam. Or convincing yourself that chocolate is a special kind of brain food and that you're eating it out of duty.
That's not to say that you can not simulate aspects of conflict in a wargame and they can certainly help you think about certain areas of interest (logistics, small units tactics, reconnaissance, etc) in new ways, but I don't think that wargaming (except in a few very specific cases) can offer you any answers.
But it can help you think of more interesting questions.
And its fun.
Which is justification enough in my book. Work hard by all means, but do not attempt to make your play work or your work play as neither will benefit by the exchange.
As so often happens on the Internet, the person who sparked this spot of thinking aloud will like as not never read it, but I'm glad that despite the fact that we will never reach an agreement, he forced me to consider and clarify my own position.
I think Paddy Griffith said it best, in his "Napoleonic Wargaming for Fun" (1980)