What are the criteria by which one lives? Is there a singular, dominant principle, as in “A Criterion” or “The Criterion”, or multiple ones; or perhaps an overarching archetype with subsets of mini-components that are all in their aggregate subsumed by a greater Platonic Form, somewhat like “Goodness” that predominates, with subtexts of lesser categories? Or, do we just blunder through life without them and arbitrarily bump into decisions, pathways that take us hither and yonder, and never quite escape the confusions of our own making?
Some people consider themselves to be “idealistic”, and look always for the good in others; still some, pure cynics such that they suspect the worst in everyone; and most, an admixture of the two extremes in a spectrum of choices. There are, in philosophy, the “logical positivists” who declare that nothing makes sense unless validity of a statement can be established, and such a criterion normally involves the tangible. That which we can see, feel, hear or establish by logical methodology comprises the entirety of one’s existential reality, and there is some truth to such an approach.
It is said that in youth, much idealism begins; in middle age, some waning of hope must by necessity be accepted; and by old age, a seeping cynicism inevitably prevails. The tangible is that which we can embrace, feel, rest our hopes upon; otherwise, the cold icicles of other people’s indifference will ultimately become the obsession of our lives.
For Federal employees and U.S. Postal workers who suffer from a medical condition, where the medical condition has begun to result in tangible manifestations — i.e., use of LWOP has become noticeably frequent; performance ratings are anticipated to be questionable; supervisors and coworkers have begun asking questions; but most importantly, you yourself have begun to notice a deterioration in your ability and capacity to maintain the level and pace of working at the Agency or Postal facility — the “criterion” to be applied is quite straightforward: Are you still able to perform all of the essential elements of your positional requirements?
If not, then it is time to consider preparing, formulating and filing an effective Federal Disability Retirement application, to be submitted to the U.S. Office of Personnel Management, whether you are under FERS, CSRS or CSRS Offset. The criteria by which we live are often complicated; it is the tangible which brings everything back down to earth from the lofty heights of idealism, youth and folly.
Robert R. McGill, Esquire