As a general maxim, it is true that not all information is equal; that the qualitative reliance of a given source of information, based upon consistency, accuracy, credibility, etc., should be viewed over the course of sufficient time; and that quantity and volume of information are often an inaccurate guide to determining the usefulness of such information.
George Orwell’s novel, 1984 is considered a “classic” not only because of the excellence in writing style, but because the content and depiction of future events (now past in terms of events having occurred, predicted to occur, or passed occurrence or relevance because the historicity of such events has surpassed expectations of occurrence) have become a common banality of reality. One point which Orwell was profoundly correct about, but in an inverse way, encapsulates information: Orwell predicted that by reducing words and language, there would be the natural consequence of a reduction in conceptual possibilities, minimizing ideas, and more importantly, dangerous or revolutionary ideas. Instead, the opposite has occurred: by exponentially expanding information, and disseminating voluminous irrelevancies, there has been a parallel reduction of knowledge.
In preparing, formulating and filing for Federal Disability Retirement benefits under FERS or CSRS, there is much information “out there”. Such volume of information, however, does not necessarily result in concurrence of knowledge.
Information often contains a catch: a perspective and a motive. Is the information merely provided in order to persuade you to pay for services? How was the information obtained — is it merely a regurgitation from information provided by someone else? Has it been “cleverly borrowed” from someone else’s website? There is nothing wrong with providing information with a secondary purpose of providing a service which is related to the information; how that information is provided, however, and whether such information is accurate, reliable and consistent, may make all the difference in the world.
In pursuing eligibility for Federal OPM Disability Retirement benefits under FERS or CSRS from the Office of Personnel Management, be careful in accessing information on the issues; not all information is equal; and it is ultimately knowledge, not information, which one is attempting to obtain.
Robert R. McGill, Esquire