Magazine June 21, 2010, Issue

The Happiness of Pursuit

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The Battle: How the Fight Between Free Enterprise and Big Government Will Shape America’s Future, by Arthur C. Brooks (Basic, 174 pp., $23.95)

When he was 19 years old, Arthur C. Brooks dropped out of college to play the French horn. He and his friends formed a quintet and toured the country playing chamber music. The work was demanding and not at all lucrative. But Brooks loved every minute. Music was his vocation. After six years, he left the quintet and joined a symphony orchestra in Spain. The opportunity was exciting. Here was Brooks’s chance for a well-paying job in a beautiful country.

It turned out to be a bust. Brooks hated the experience. It took him a couple of decades, and a Ph.D.

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