Note to future self:
This is why, when people ask me, “Have you gotten to [some political appointee]?” I tell them that the real goal is to network with the career bureaucrats just below and around that appointee. That’s why I love briefing SESers (senior executive service) and top-line general service players in government conferences. Give me a room of 500 of these players, and you’ve got a serious quorum of influencers.
Link: Thomas Barnett, Wrote it many times, now confirmed by research.