“Sound” is a word which completely changes its meaning when combined with the word “advice”. Taken separately, independently and in isolation, the word when articulated will not evoke the meaning produced by the combination, but rather, of noises one may hear, a song one is particularly fond of, or the voice of a familiar person, etc. When placed together with the word, “advice”, it takes on an entirely separate meaning: Of being solid, reliable, truthful, etc.
Of course, one can also argue that it is merely a repetitive tautology, unnecessary and redundant; for, “advice given” should, by definition, be sound to begin with, otherwise it is neither advice nor sound and the duality of the meaning doesn’t add anything one to the other. But clearly there is such a thing as bad advice, or advice which is “not sound”, and so there is a reason to combine the two words together, for the word “sound” does indeed add something to the word “advice” to combine and make up the concept, “sound advice”.
For Federal employees and U.S. Postal workers who suffer from a medical condition such that the medical condition prevents the Federal or Postal employee from performing one or more of the essential elements of one’s Federal or Postal job, what is often lacking in the field of Federal Disability Retirement is not only “sound advice”, but any advice at all. Agencies don’t want to disseminate information about Federal Disability Retirement; Supervisors and Managers offer ignorance as an excuse; and even your own Human Resource Office is deliberately unhelpful.
Robert R. McGill, Esquire