Service: We rate it, review it, and at times are too quick to judge it. Our demand for its excellence underpins a multibillion dollar online ratings industry. As consumers, we seldom make decisions on travel, eating out, or hiring professional help without researching customer reviews on service.

No matter our politics, we are awed by the voluntary service and sacrifice of millions of active duty and reserve military personnel. And we are awed by the service of millions more volunteers who serve their communities wearing the uniform of rolled-up sleeves.

Service still matters, it is still missed and measured, honored and treasured. Why is it, then, that so many of us — and yes, despite appearances we are still a nation of "us," not of "we" and "them" — disregard the absence of the principle of service among our leaders in Washington, D.C.?

Service to self is seen and tweeted in narcissistic abundance. In Congress, service to "the party" and its wealthy paymasters trumps service to the sick and the striving and the shut out. Where is the quiet integrity of service to country exemplified by our forefathers, the humble dignity of service called for by our religious teachings?

Todd Huffman, Eugene