When I was in college in the early 1960s, I developed an intense interest in government. Government seemed to be a potent tool that could be developed and used as an instrument of peace. That fit so well with my personal values that I decided to make a career in it. I believed that there was sweet spot somewhere between anarchy and absolutism that met the needs described by Thomas Hobbes in The Leviathan to transcend man’s natural state without government:
“In such condition, there is no place for industry; because the fruit thereof is uncertain: and consequently no culture of the earth; no navigation, nor use of the commodities that may be imported by sea; no commodious building; no instruments of moving, and removing, such things as require much force; no knowledge of the face of the earth; no account of time; no arts; no letters; no society; and which is worst of all, continual fear, and danger of violent death; and the life of man, solitary, poor, nasty, brutish, and short.”
A tour of duty as an officer in student government persuaded me that my personality was not suited for service in public office, I gravitated toward civil service where most of the policies of government were implemented. Pressed for employment after military service and with our first child on the way in 1971, I secured a position as a social service worker with the Texas Department of Public Welfare.