Saving for Retirement When the World is Probably Going to End Soon

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By Leigh Anne Jasheway

The whole planet is probably going down the tubes in anywhere from 20 – 2 million years. While most people are panicking about the loss of drinkable water and where their children will live when the air consists mostly of cockroaches and the skin of dead Republican Senators, you’ve got more important concerns, like whether you should go ahead and spend your 401K now while there are oceans to cruise and golf courses that still have enough gravity to sink a putt on.

The fine folks at Apocalyptic Investing can help answer all your investment questions, whether the world ends in floods, fire, or too much glitter. Read on if you’re struggling with how much you should save (assuming you’ve convinced student loan officers you died years ago and have any income to spare).

I’ve heard that I should put away about 15% of my gross income for retirement. But what if I will literally have to retire in hell because the planet is toast? Should I reduce the amount I save and spend it all now?

There are two schools of thought on this. The first is the traditional investment school which would encourage you to put all your money into Mutual Funds because otherwise how will the stockbrokers continue to get their bonuses?  The second, more recent school is the one we belong to. We say, put $1000 in coins under your mattress (spread it out so it doesn’t make your mattress lumpy) and spend the rest on whatever your heart desires. Spend it now because tomorrow, you may be treading water as the ice caps melt – make sure you buy a boat!

What if the world doesn’t end and I have to live off my retirement income and Social Security, assuming the Republicans don’t give all my money to a bunch of old white guys who must be zombies because how else are they still alive?


That’s defeatist thinking! We give chances of the world ending in the next 30 years 10:1 odds, while chances of your being able to survive on money you’ve put away plus Social Security 1:1000. We’re pulling for annihilation. It’s best for all of our portfolios.


I’m not much of a risk-taker and think I’d still like to tuck some money away every month, just in case someone saves the planet just as it looks like all is lost. That happens in the movies all the time, so I have to believe it’s possible. Given that, what kinds of financial products would you suggest?

Okay, sure, we understand. Not everyone is cool with the doomsday scenario investment strategy. Let’s start with investments we’d caution against:

  1. Earth real estate, unless you find property as far from a coastline as possible, say Enid, Oklahoma. Trailers are cheap there.
  2. Gold. Gold sinks. There’s a reason all that pirate treasure has never been found. Your investment won’t do anyone any good at the bottom of the ocean.
  3. Paper money. Paper burns. Also, it disintegrates in water. So flood or fire, you’re screwed.

Our favorite new investments are:

  1. Martian real estate.
  2. Cabbage Patch dolls (they’re making a come-back; trust us).
  3. Pharmaceuticals. It’s never not a good time to invest in something that costs 100 x more one year than it did the previous years. Sure, there are some ethical concerns, but who worries about ethics, these days, right?

Rather than planning for retirement, would it be smarter to invest in my kids’ college educations and hope that they invent a way to reduce carbon or create Antarctic ice?

We all like to think our kids are geniuses, but deep in your heart of hearts, you know yours are possibly dumb as rocks, right? Your offspring are more likely to drink heavily through college and if/when they graduate, they’ll move in with you into that trailer in Enid (which doesn’t have a basement) and smoke all your pot. Skip the tuition and invest in alcohol and weed. That way, you’ll be ready for anything. In fact, forget about our other investment suggestions. Alcohol and weed. That’s where you should put your money.

We know you may have more questions about investing during these uncertain times and we’re happy to help, assuming we’re not dodging asteroids or brushing our teeth with asbestos and mercury. Feel free to call Apocalyptic Investing any time at 1-800-ITS-OVER.


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