[IMGCAP(1)]In its way, the notion of retiring at 65 is as hallowed as the more official parts of the American dream. Like owning your own home, it has entered the short list of things all right-thinking people desire, and deserve. If it's not officially enshrined in the Bill of Rights, that is a mere oversight; most people consider themselves as entitled to kick back and relax in their 65th year as they are to speak freely, assemble as they wish, and so on.

Yet perhaps it's time to re-examine that notion, just as we have begun to re-examine the supposedly boundless benefits of owning your own home (assuming it's not underwater, at least). Just as we are coming to recognize that home ownership is not always an unalloyed good, we should inspect some of our thinking about retirement, and the form in which we expect it to come.

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