The traditional philosophical arguments surrounding the nature of Truth, the “battle” between “Absolute Truth” and “Pure Relativism”, etc., are too often simplified and reduced to sloganeering and shouting matches which end up being nothing more than accusations as to whether one believes in a Higher Order of Being — or not. Yet, it is often a perspective upon appearances which determines the “truth” of a statement.
The U.S. Office of Personnel Management, in denying a Federal Disability Retirement application under FERS, takes a similar perspective on truth. They will take each medical condition cited, isolate each and minimize the impact of the separated medical conditions upon one’s ability or inability to perform the essential elements of one’s Federal or Postal position, and by approaching the “truth” this way, can purport to make your case appear “as if” you never had any case at all.
Now, some might critically argue that such an approach is “disingenuous” (i.e., somewhat akin to the “absolutist” argument), while others merely view this as “clever” (i.e., akin to the “relativists”). The point of OPM’s approach is to make you believe that you never had a chance to begin with, and to have you go away without filing for Reconsideration, thus reducing their caseload by a numerical insignificance until multiplied by an exponential factor of greater percentages.
The way to counter OPM’s argument? To identify their approach and counter it with a different, more powerful perspective on truth — by further medical documentation and more powerful legal argumentation which makes OPM’s argument impotent and irrelevant.
Robert R. McGill, Esquire