JohnnyLaw wrote:Ok, so there is a sector where I get holidays (paid, oh also vacations are paid) and weekends off. I work a steady, but easily flexible schedule. I get health, dental, and tax benefits. Of course, we have yet to factor in the slow (but reliable and unequivocal) pay increases, though most government attorneys will eventually make six figures. These pay increases occur regardless of my work ethic, ability, or 'earning potential'. Oh, also, it's nearly impossible to fire me.
Tell me again how is this less desirable than an 80 hour, boot-kissing, coffee grabbing suckfest at a big firm?
Bitches, enlighten me.
I'm just talking about federal government work, so bear with me.
What you're missing is that government jobs -- be it at an agency, the courts, DOJ/USAO, WH, etc. -- your pay is going to basically suck in real dollar terms (i.e. buying power) if you live in any of the major metro markets (e.g. NYC, SF, LA, etc.).
You can do it on a federal salary as a single professional, but unless you marry rich, it's almost impossible to raise a family on a federal salary, even if you are willing to live 50 miles away in the 'burbs somewhere. And, yes, eventually you'll make "six figures" but we're talking generally maxing out at 150k ... and that's typically after 10+ years of federal service. You don't hit the century mark, depending on what agency you are at, until generally after you've been out of law school for 10 years.
So what you are missing is the money issue.
It's why people who have exit options, exit.
And, it's why even federal judges, who have life tenure and lifetime pensions (based on their salary, as mediocre as it might be) leave the bench for private practice. Because even they get dollar-bill Schadenfreude. Wouldn't you? Esp. if you see not only your peers, but your fucking law clerks pay more in taxes than you make in gross pay.
Now, if you live and practice in Podunk, it's very viable to live comfortably and raise a family on a federal salary. But then, you live and practice in Podunk.