This week, the Fool scuffled with conventional wisdom and introduced readers to someone who's got it all wrong when it comes to investing for retirement.

Earnings Rising? Sell These Stocks!

The Fool encourages investors to find solid companies to buy and hold for years, like Johnson & Johnson (NYSE: JNJ) and Wal-Mart. But that's not the only way to build a profitable portfolio. It might seem backward, but Fool contributor John Rosevear explains how to successfully play in the realm of cyclical stocks.

"They rise (sometimes sharply) and fall (often steeply) with the economy. ... These nuts-and-bolts companies do well when the economy's strong, and retreat -- but are big enough not to fail (usually) -- when it's weak," points out John. He's talking about automakers like Ford and Toyota (NYSE: TM) and chemical producers like Dow Chemical and DuPont.

What's the secret to making money on these fluctuating stocks when we know market timing is a mirage? Here's a hint: Buyers should look for high price-to-earnings ratios. Click to the article to get a better handle on this tactic.

Those Poor, Poor CEOS!

Recent reports have talked about decreases in CEO pay, but Fool columnist Alyce Lomax isn't going to sugarcoat the situation that should still worry Fools. "CEO compensation got way out of whack during way too many bubbly go-go years. In many cases, I'd say a little pay deflation's way overdue," writes Alyce.

She rounds up some well-paid outliers: Kraft, AT&T, Occidental Petroleum (NYSE: OXY), and Wells Fargo. A USA TODAY report that Alyce mentions highlights Hewlett-Packard's (NYSE: HPQ) Mark Hurd as earning the most ($24.2 million) and Apple's (NYSE: AAPL) Steve Jobs earning the least ($1).

Click to the article for a discussion of corporate perks, the free market, and what shareholders need to do.

4 Reasons Not to Fund an IRA

You know the type. Enjoys paying taxes, doesn't worry about how to pay the bills after the paychecks stop, and is content with only a few options for retirement investing. Longtime Fool contributor Selena Maranjian has a bead on these folks.

"If you make $60,000, and you're looking at a 25% tax rate, you'll only have to pay around $15,000 -- big deal!" Selena notes. "Who cares that a $5,000 contribution to a traditional IRA ... will lower your income to $55,000, and your tax to $13,750? Is $1,250 really that much money? Besides, the government could use it."

Click to the article and let Selena show you how to really think about taxes and retirement. She uses examples including Best Buy (NYSE: BBY) and PotashCorp (NYSE: POT) to show how to save yourself tens of thousands in capital gains taxes.

Wal-Mart and Best Buy are Motley Fool Inside Value recommendations. Ford, Best Buy, and Apple are Motley Fool Stock Advisor selections. Motley Fool Options has recommended buying calls on Johnson & Johnson, which is a Motley Fool Income Investor pick. The Fool owns shares of Best Buy.

Fool online editor Kris Eddy doesn't own shares of any stocks mentioned in this article. Try any of our investing newsletters free for 30 days. The Fool has a disclosure policy.