18Recovering from Adversity

Life is not always "fair." We can live prudently, devise a savings plan, and diligently build assets. We might be well on our way to reaching cherished goals and even have planned strategies to avoid serious mishap. Despite our best efforts, trouble can happen anyway, and on occasion, it will hold us firmly in its painful grip.

Our difficulties can be gradual—a job loss or long-term health problem—and result in a slow erosion of assets. Or we can be hit by a sudden financial calamity. Our retirement savings can disappear in the blink of an eye through the actions of an unscrupulous money manager or the changed pension policies hammered out in a corporate board-room and ratified by a federal bankruptcy court to "save ...

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