Yesterday’s blog entry reported on an e-mail that I sent to Academic Researcher Wade Pfau on April 5. 2011. I sent Wade an e-mail on April 18, 2011, reporting that The Returns Sequence Reality Checker had been released.
Wade said that the calculator looked great. He asked: “Have you been following the Trinity study thread at Bogleheads? DRiP Guy had a bit of a temper tantrum over the weekend” I responded that: “Things move forward at an exceedingly slow pace. But I did detect forward motion” in that thread.
Wade was during this time-period posting occasionally at my blog. A number of articles were published in this time-period acknowledging ten years later that I was right in my May 13, 2002, post, that the Old School safe withdrawal rate studies really do get all the numbers wildly wrong because they do not include an adjustment for the valuation level that applies on the day the retirement begins. I wrote in a blog entry that the Old School studies should be corrected. I explained that financial planners had been using the infamous “4 Percent Rule” for years and that millions of middle-class investors will be experiencing failed retirements in days to come and that we should all do everything possible to get the word out and help as many people as we can. Wade at first expressed reluctance to acknowledge the obvious merit of this idea. But, after some discussion, he agreed that the Old School studies should be corrected. He said that he would write an e-mail to the authors of the Trinity Study seeking a correction.
The Greaney Goons responded by putting forward posts at a thread at the Goon Central board threatening to get Wade fired from his job by sending defamatory comments to his employer. Wade sent me the following e-mail on May 1, 2011:
Thanks for the comments on my blog, and also your new article about the Fisher and Statman study is very nice.
I think I should stay publicly quiet for a while, as I really don’t want anyone sending messages about any topics to officials at my university. They will not care about who is right or wrong, especially as they will not care about US retirement planning issues anyway, but they just don’t like any topic of controversy or problems. Hopefully this stuff will blow over soon and those guys will forget about it and move on to the next thing before any further escalation occurs.
But would you mind, at least for the next week or so, to not mention my name anymore on your blog, and to also completely ignore the “Wade Pfau Contacts Trinity Authors” thread at the Hocomania site. I hope that thread can quickly move down the list into the archives. At the same time, please do not delete it either, as that would surely be noticed by someone.
By the way, please do not mention this publicly, but just to let you know, I haven’t heard back from any of the Trinity authors yet.
Best wishes, Wade