Retirement. That’s what the IRA is about and we don’t mean new Goodyear’s. Whether you realize it or not, your parents have probably paid into an IRA much or all of their working lives. They will live off of that nest egg (rather than off of you) until they are Gone. The IRA was set up to wean American workers away from the ‘retirement-to-grave’ pension structure that American corporations were so desperate to shed.