In its most basic sense, isn’t that what madness is — of a lack of order, or what society deems to be so? Eccentricity skirts the boundaries of madness; being “odd” is merely a recognition of some forms of eccentricities; and “thinking outside of the box” is to simply do things that people have already thought of, but which we fool ourselves into thinking is something new and creative, because such thought processes are what every conventional thinker thinks is the oddball perspective when everyone else thinks that the other has not yet thought about it.
Orthodoxy is oppressive to youth and foreigners precisely because tradition itself is yet unknown, and thus cannot be the sole basis by which to continue things as they were. Leo Strauss often argued that tradition alone is a poor basis from which to argue inalienable rights; something more needs to be provided in order for a foundation of justified longevity to occur. Is rebellion in and of itself madness? Is sudden upheaval — of a desire and want to upend long traditions and orthodoxy — itself a form of desire to solicit and court disorder, and thus madness?
One begins to experience the fringe of madness when too much disorder and chaos enters a previously-ordered life; that’s why old people and young children cannot tolerate too much upheaval; and those in the middle, though they may be better prepared to tolerate disruption, can only do so within limits.
We hear of certain types of people and of particular characteristics and personalities who “thrive” on disorientation — of uncertainty, disruption, financial instability or physical challenges. They get a “high” on participating in “start-ups” or going deep into debt taking “a chance” on “hitting it big”; or even of wall street traders who, in a different life and under modified circumstances, may have been gamblers or con men (some would counter that there is very little distinction between the three). Most, however, prefer the stability of predictability, and seek order not only out of madness, but to prevent it.
For Federal employees and U.S. Postal workers who suffer from a medical condition, where the medical condition has become a continuing disruption by impeding, preventing and precluding the Federal or Postal employee from performing one or more of the essential elements of one’s Federal or Postal job, it will often appear as if madness has replaced the order of the world.
Preparing, formulating and filing an effective Federal Disability Retirement application, to be submitted to the U.S. Office of Personnel Management, whether the Federal or Postal employee is under FERS, CSRS or CSRS Offset, is a logical step in an attempt to court order out of madness; for, in the end, the medical condition is a type of madness in and of itself, is it not? It has all of the characteristics of madness — of chaos, disorder, disruption, and the insanity of responses from one’s Federal Agency or the Postal Service, that you are no longer the valued employee you once were; and thus does filing for OPM Medical Retirement allow for order to come out of madness.
Robert R. McGill, Esquire