“It Is Natural That Powerful People Will Do What They Can to Protect Their Interest. It Is the Norm in the Academic World and In the Broader World. I Am Grateful That You Write About It.”

I have been sending e-mails to various people letting them know of how the Buy-and-Hold Mafia silenced Academic Researcher Wade Pfau after he published research showing the superiority of Valuation-Informed Indexing strategies over Buy-and-Hold strategies. Set forth below are reports on five of the responses I received.

1) Alessandro Acquisti, Associate Professor at Carnegie Mellon University, said: “Thanks for the link.”

2) Jay Desai, Assistant Professor at Shri Chimanbhai Patel Institute of Management and Research, said: “I have gone through your article. I also believe that no market in the world is efficient as explained by the Fama-French Model.”

3) Jing Chen,an Assistant Professor at the University of Northern British Columbia who has done important research that attempts to integrate physics, biology, economics, information science and other fields and to provide an entirely new foundation for economic theory, said: “Thanks for your message and your article.  It is natural that powerful people will do what they can to protect their interest. It is the norm in the academic world and in the broader world. I am grateful that you write about it.”

4) Joe Fuller, a co-founder of Monitor Group, a multinational consulting firm, said: “I’m afraid this literature is not anything I’m remotely expert in, so I’m afraid I’m not comfortable taking a position.”

5) Steve Jewson, a Vice President for Model Development at Risk Management Systems, said: “I like it. It makes sense to me.”


  1. Rob says

    Because I am his friend, Sparky.

    Wade was never happier than he was during the 16 months when he was preparing Nobel-prize-quality research. How many years of study and work and experience do you think it took him to get where he is today? We are talking about decades of work.

    I want to see those decades of work pay off. For Wade. For me. For you. For Bogle. For Shiller. For all of us.

    We could reach more people if some of you Goons would help out.

    How many daily e-mails can I put you down for, my Goon buddy?


  2. sparky says


    It doesn’t look like you are his friend. In fact, it looks like he wishes you would not refer to his all the time.

    Your Goon label is further deflection of the real issue.

  3. Rob says

    It doesn’t look like you are his friend.

    No one has worked harder to see that his right to publish honest research be respected, Sparky.

    There’s no one even in a close second place.


  4. Rob says

    it looks like he wishes you would not refer to his all the time.

    My good friend Wade has said things to this effect in the time AFTER you Goons threatened to send defamatory e-mails to his employer to get him fired from his job and AFTER John Bogle and Bill Bernstein and Larry Swedroe and Rick Ferri all failed to speak up in support of him.

    Do you believe everything that a hostage says at a time when a gun is pointed to his head, Sparky?


  5. Rob says

    Your Goon label is further deflection of the real issue.

    The Goons are the only thing holding us back, Sparky. That’s been so since the morning of May 13, 2002.

    Take a look at the Post Archives. We had hundreds of community members saying that our finding that the Old School SWR studies get the numbers wrong was the most exciting finding in the history of the Retire Early board. It was the death threats and the tens of thousands of acts of defamation and the board bannings that destroyed that board, not the community’s intense desire to learn about effective Retire Early strategies.

    There’s a reason why the published rules of every investing board and blog on the internet prohibit the tactics that have been used by the Lindauerheads and the Greaney Goons to block honest discussions from bearing good fruit. There are thousands of years of civilization evidenced in those published rules. We make a terrible mistake when we fail to administer them in a reasonable manner because it would hurt the feelings of the Buy-and-Holders for people to learn what the last 30 years of peer-reviewed academic research says about what works in stock investing.

    That’s my sincere take re this important matter, in any event.

    I naturally wish you the best of luck in all your future endeavors.


  6. sparky says


    Once again, you take one simple point and then go off in several directions with a response. Stick to the point.

    If Wade asked you to stop referring to him, would you honor the request.

    Just answer with a simple yes or no.

  7. Rob says

    Not in 10 billion years.

    That’s five words.

    I am not able to express my sincere feelings re this question in less than five words, Sparky.

    The shortest answer that I am able to give to your question that I view as being even a tiny bit honest is — Not in 10 billion years.

    I hope that helps you out a tiny bit.


  8. Rob says

    If Wade were to tell me that he would like me to put him down for 50 e-mails per day, I would be thrilled to hear the news.

    That’s another way of conveying the same basic information.

    I hope that helps a bit too.


  9. Rob says


    If you speak to Wade, please tell him that I would be 100 percent happy to post any words he would like to post giving his side of the story as a blog entry here. I would also be happy to include a link to that blog entry at the bottom of my article on The Wade Pfau story so that everyone who reads the article would be exposed to his take on these matters.

    There’s a sense in which I have already done this. Wade posted several comments in which he put forward his side of the story. I turned those into full blog posts in an effort to highlight them. Then I put together an article that linked to the full blog posts and linked to that article in the full version of the article telling The Wade Pfau Story.

    If he would like me to include that link in the Teaser version of the article, he’s got it. If he would like to write a new blog entry telling the story from his perspective, he’s got it.

    I obviously cannot agree not to tell the story. This is the most important economic and political story of any of our lifetimes.

    But I am 100 percent happy to do anything that I can do to insure that no bias creeps into my telling of the tale. The best way that I can think of to do that is for Wade to tell the story from his perspective and for me to make that telling of the story easily available to all those who read the story as told from my perspective.


  10. banned plop contributor says

    If I were Wade, the way I would take up your offer (and also test your very shaky integrity on the matter) is to simply provide the following copy, for you to include as a footnote, each and every time you use his material, link to him, quote him, or refer to him by name:

    “I, Wade Pfau, have over time come to believe that Robert Michael “Hocus” Bennett is a sincerely disturbed individual who is out of contact with reality, and would seem to require professional mental health intervention before he causes harm to himself or others. Please take this opinion into consideration when considering his highly inaccurate and twisted view of my various positions and writings.”

  11. Rob says

    I’m not making the offer to you Goons.

    I’m making the offer to my good friend Wade Pfau, whom I think is a fine man, a good guy, a generous-spirited friend and an outstanding researcher.


  12. Rob says

    …Who may be living out the remainder of his days in a prison cell next door to the one assigned to Bernie Madoff.

    Just joshin’ around, Wade!

    Kinda, sorta.


  13. sparky says


    Just a yes or a no.

    To confirm, “no” you would not honor his request (If he made such a request).

    Second question. Can you understand this could be perceived as harassment of Wade?

    Just a simple yes or no response, Rob.

  14. Rob says

    I am not able to give a one-word answer to either of these two questions, Sparky.

    Trying to help Wade to avoid a prison sentence or to encourage him to do the things he needs to do to shorten his prison sentence is the farthest thing from harassment of him that the human mind is able to imagine, Sparky.

    Prison is a bad experience.

    You get this, no?


  15. Rob says

    I suppose that I am harassing Mel Lindauer when I try to get his prison sentence shortened.

    And I am harassing John Greaney when I try to get his prison sentence shortened.

    And I am harassing my good friend Jack Bogle when I try to get his prison sentence shortened.

    That makes perfect sense, Sparky.

    It’s funny that I didn’t see it that way going back to the first day.


  16. sparky says


    It appears you refuse to answer (unless you wish to clarify with a simple yes or no response).

    Rob, you are not helping yourself. The prison comments are not funny.

    It appears you have proven the case of your detractors.

  17. Rob says

    The prison comments are not funny.

    It’s not even a tiny bit funny that people are going to prison, Sparky.

    But you know what? We can cry about it or we can try to find the lighter side of it. I elect the latter path.

    We humans tell jokes about sad stuff all the time. it’s one of the ways we find release.

    I tell the serious side too. I’ve been doing that for 10 years now.

    People cannot take a diet of 100 percent heavy material. We need to lighten up from time to time. That’s normal and healthy and positive and helpful.

    Please take good care.


  18. Rob says

    It appears you have proven the case of your detractors.

    Good point, Sparky.

    It’s funny that I didn’t see it that way going back to the first day.


  19. sparky says


    The prison comments are serious and that isn’t the type of conversation you have when you want to “lighten up” a topic.

    Get a grip and leave these people alone.

  20. Rob says

    Say that you were Bernie Madoff’s best friend in the days before he was sent to prison. You came to understand that he was engaged in fraud.

    You mention it to him. He freaks.

    Now what?

    The easy thing is not to say anything else. The downside with taking the easy way is that your friend ends up serving a long prison sentence.

    The hard way is saying stuff that causes your good friend to freak. The upside with the freak-out is that, once he gets over the freak-out, you can work with him to bring things to a better place.

    John Bogle is a friggin’ genius, okay? I rank him as the second most important investing analyst in history. If someone wanted to argue that he should be first, I wouldn’t object too strongly. A reasonable case could be made that he ranks first. So you cannot be any more of a John Bogle fan than Rob Bennett. Are we clear re that much, Sparky?

    Now –

    John Bogle is also human.

    John Bogle has made mistakes.

    John Bogle played the lead role in pushing the investing strategy that caused the economic crisis.

    What to do?

    What we need to do is to help our friend John Bogle understand the realities so that he can take things to a better place both for himself and for all the rest of us.

    John Bogle did not wake up one morning and say to himself:”You know what would be fun? Why don’t I start the biggest economic crisis in U.S. history, maybe we’ll get lucky and it will turn into the Second Great Depression.” That’s insane. That never happened. Are we still clear?

    The guy is a friggin’ genius. He has done an amazing amount of good work. He’s also human. He made a mistake (that thousands of other smart and good people also made, to be sure). So what do we do now?

    You say we leave our good friend Jack Bogle to the wolves. We let the economy collapse. We let our friend Jack ruin his reputation. We watch millions of people’s lives get destroyed as we fall into the Second Great Depression.


    It’s not.

    He’s drunk, you know? He’s suffering from cognitive dissonance. That’s like being drunk. He is not capable of thinking clearly and making good decisions. It’s like our friend is drunk and wants to drive home and he is reaching for the car keys.

    A friend doesn’t say: “Have a nice ride!”

    A friend says: “Give me those keys, you are sleeping in my guest room tonight!”

    Please tell me you get it this time, Sparky.

    We don’t let our friends destroy themselves.

    WE DO NOT.

    If our friend Jack feels that he must continue to advocate Buy-and-Hold, that can be an okay thing or even a good thing.





    Why? Because we are meanines?

    No. Because we are nicies.

    Friends do not let friends drive drunk. And friends do not let the pioneers in development of research-based investing strategies destroy themselves through the use of death threats and defamation and board bannings and threats to get academic researchers fired from their jobs. Any case that our friend Jack Bogle is going to make for Buy-and-Hold he is going to make pursuant to the published rules of every one of our boards and blogs. Jack Bogle is going to follow the rules of discourse that apply among all civilized people of the world.

    Now –

    Please do not make the mistake of thinking that I am offering a suggestion here and seeking your input.



    You dig, man?

    Valuation-Informed Indexing is the future. If you want to say that civilized discourse is the future, it’s fine if you say it that way. It takes us to the same place. Say it the ideal way or say it the cautious and tentative and only minimally acceptable way. But drop the know-it-all attitude. That doesn’t fly. Not in the face of millions of ruined middle-class lives.

    Please reach deep into your heart and respond with all the love of which you are capable. Love is the answer here, my old friend. I am not guessing. I am SURE.


  21. sparky says


    You have mentally lost it again. The only thing that I see that is even true is that you have been banned on boards. Based on your over the top comments, I can understand why. I don’t think you are capable of having a simple and sane conversation.

    Get help and leave those people alone.

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