Federal workers have it cushy compared to State and Local :-). Regardless, when I started my career working at a council of governments, and then a transit agency, it was a conscious choice to work in the public sector in order to "do good" over just making money. The majority of folks that I work with at the Federal, State, or Local levels of government have that attitude and are dedicated to getting the job done and doing the most good for society at large no matter how many hours they need to put in. Most work much much more than 40 hours a week.
So in my mind its definitely a calling instead of just a job.