In modernity, we have taught our kids that rules don’t matter, that we can subvert, avert, avoid and appease; if you don’t like the goal post, dig it up and move it; or, if you don’t like the rules, change the definition. No one complies, anymore. We no longer say or have the attitude of: Okay, rules are rules, we have to obey them.
Instead, because we are a country of lawyers, where argumentation and logical conformity are not based upon unquestioned acceptance of normative rigidity, we say: Why should X be defined as Y? Why does a goalpost have to be situated within X-number of feet of the demarcation-line? Let’s move the goal post; let’s change the definition; let’s perform linguistic gymnastics and open-language surgery upon rules, definitions and mandates we don’t agree with.
Where did that defiance against conformity come from? From whence did it originate? Was it because the Post-WWII generation and beyond decided that all punishments were cruel, that delayed-gratification was a sin, and everyone should get a prize for participation, and there should be no acknowledgement of “winners” as opposed to “losers”?
For example — in the arena of Federal Disability Retirement Law. Yes, the U.S. Office of Personnel Management can often ignore “the law”; and yes, OPM can sometimes mis-state the regulations governing Federal Employee Disability Retirement Law. But when they do, there is always the potential danger that if it gets to the Third Stage of the complex bureaucratic process, the Administrative Judge at the U.S. Merit Systems Protection Board will “correct” the error, the mis-statement, the mis-application, and right the wrong.
Additionally, it is a good idea to have a FERS Attorney who specializes in Federal Employee Disability Retirement Law throughout the retirement process, in order to make sure that OPM is not moving the goal post, and is not bending the definitions as delineated in statutory authority.
Robert R. McGill
Lawyer exclusively representing Federal and Postal employees to secure their Federal Disability Retirement benefits under FERS from the U.S. Office of Personnel Management.