The Atlantic

Shawn Brimley's Town

Washington, D.C., can be an easy city to mock or resent—but it’s full of workers who’ve given up opportunities to serve something larger than themselves.
Source: Joshua Roberts / Reuters

We live in an era in which and the president of the United States proudly eschews the nuances and details of his own policies, preferring to spend his days watching television. Nonetheless, elsewhere in the federal government each day, committed men and women from the three branches of government study, formulate, and execute public policy to serve a nation of 325 million people. Many of these men and women have the skills, intelligence, and education to thrive in private-sector enterprises—usually in

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