Preemptive strikes are often justified by anticipatory rationalizations; the “other” one was “going to” do it, so it is right that one should do it beforehand (whether we are certain of the other’s actions or not, and of course, that is the beauty of such argumentation; by raising the specter of suspicion, we skip over the question itself and deride those who would dare to question the right of self-defense).
In international affairs and economic entanglements on a macro-based scale, nations can impose sanctions and initiate first strikes based upon barricades denoting “sourced” information and secrets obtained.
In linguistic preemptions, within the microcosmic universe of office settings, neighborhoods, friendships teetering on total destruction – these are the true arenas of daily strikes of preemptive devices, where suspicion should prevail and concerns conveyed. For, in the end, why is it that people plant the seeds of doubt and utter the words of undermining efficacy? Is gossip ever justified, rumors of helpful venue, or callous remarks disseminated of healthy connotations?
The linguistic art of preemption, of course, is engaged by the subtle hints of rumors unverified, and planted precisely in order to destroy before the others get to you first. It is the art of the “beforehand” in an underhanded way, perpetrated by the dark hands of an assassin’s heart.
The problem with those who engage in such acts, is that they make of us paranoid despots all, because the unnerving discord effectuated throughout engenders an atmosphere of distrust and suspicion from and by all, whereby people can never pinpoint the source of a rumor, the origin of a tasty piece of tidbit, and the destructive impact of consequences denied. “Why can’t people just be straightforward?” is the refrain used by innocent fawns just before the predator devours; and the answer should be clear: Acts of preemption avoid the consequential revelation of an actual justification; it is not “self-defense”, but an act of aggression with a retrospective view towards explaining that which may never have occurred in the first place.
For Federal employees and U.S. Postal workers who daily are pounded by preemptive strikes through subtleties, rumors and whispers of meanness, the time to “come clean” is probably long past due. If the medical condition prevents the Federal or Postal employee from performing one or more of the essential elements of the Federal or Postal employee’s positional duties, the Agency, Supervisors and Managers have likely already taken note. Preemption has already begun.
It is, in more ordinary and crude parlances, a matter of covering one’s own posterior, and thus the beginning trails of quiet harassment, hostility and increasing administrative pressures.
In such circumstances, the Federal or Postal employee is fully justified in engaging in the preemptive strike which has already been initiated by the “dark forces” of the workplace: preparing, formulating and filing an effective Federal Disability Retirement application through the U.S. Office of Personnel Management, whether the Federal or Postal employee is under FERS, CSRS or CSRS Offset, is that preemptive act which has already been justified by the medical condition itself; it just needs to be prodded into the next logical step, in order to avoid any suspicion of preemption, and instead, be brought to the fore.
Robert R. McGill, Esquire