Set forth below is the text of a comment that I recently put to a discussion of a blog entry at this site:
It doesn’t matter, even if you are right. Not one bit. Because everyone thinks you are a complete ass and you will be long forgotten when someone actually does anything semi-productive with the vague notions you have been spewing for 10+ years.
You’re wrong, What.
You pretend to think I am an ass. You are in a tiny minority. When I go to the Financial Bloggers Conferences, I meet lots of people. Not one of them has ever indicated in any way to suggest that he or she thinks I am an ass.
People are EMBARRASSED. That much is so.
People are SCARED. That much is so.
People are CONFUSED. That much is so.
That’s not at all the same thing as thinking I am an ass.
I have seen a parallel case showing how this will turn out. My site host (SiteSell) is owned by a fellow named “Ken Evoy.” He is a smart guy and he came up with some ideas for how to get traffic on the internet that were ahead of their time. His ideas worked for a good number of years. People LOVED him. I never followed his system because it didn’t make sense for what I am trying to do with my site. But I certainly noticed how much people loved the guy. It was over the top.
The Evoy system no longer works since Google came out with its Panda and Penguin changes. People don’t say “Oh, Evoy had good ideas but Google has changed.” Hardly anyone does that. There is one group, smaller than before, that continues to love him to this day. That group says that Panda and Penguin don’t affect the system despite a mountain of evidence to the contrary. Another group now hates the guy with a burning passion. Their businesses have failed. They blame him.
Evoy is John Bogle.
Bogle is very smart. Bogle did things no one before him was able to do. Bogle deserves to be lauded as a hero. I laud him as a hero and always will. But I do that with an appreciation of the one thing he got wrong. Those who today laud him without an appreciation of the thing he got wrong are going to turn on him after the next price crash. I OPPOSE that. I think that’s a mistake. But I cannot control the world. I am virtually sure that that is what is going to happen.
I am not certain to succeed. But the risk for me is not the risk you point to. If people reach a point where they are willing to hear the realities of stock investing, I have the only site on the internet with 11 years of material exploring those realities. My site will go viral if a good percentage of the population opens up to the message. I am not worried about what happens to me in that event. In that event, I won’t have to file any legal papers to enjoy a $500 million payday. I will have multiple parties pushing the money on me, asking me to take it fast to help them with their guilt feelings.
My risk is that people are going to become excessively disillusioned with Buy-and-Hold. Valuation-Informed Indexing is Buy-and-Hold with one change. If people come to hate Buy-and-Hold with a burning passion, their emotionalism may cause them to tune out Valuation-Informed Indexing as well on the grounds that they just cannot bear to hear about anything that even reminds them of Buy-and-Hold.
If you were smart, you would join me in doing what you can to insure that that doesn’t happen. People don’t hate Buy-and-Hold today. So, if the Buy-and-Holders joined forces with me, we could stop the next crash from happening and all would be well on about 20 different fronts. But I obviously don’t control what people do. I am not expecting the Buy-and-Holders to help out. I hope they will. I urge them to. But I understand that that part of this is out of my hands.
I think you are wrong in your take as to how things will play out. I think you are being emotional once again. You are so ashamed of what you have done over the 11 years that you would rather see the entire planet go to hell over seeing Rob Bennett get any acknowledgment for the amazing work he has done over these past 11 years.
That’s on you, What. Your hate doesn’t just hurt me. It hurts you too. In very, very serious ways. It so blinds you that you cannot even see how much it is hurting you. All I can do is type out those words and hope that they cause some melting of your heart. I have said many times that I am happy to help you in any possible way and I of course stand by those words today. If you are too filled with false pride to accept my help, then that’s just the way it is. It makes me very sad. But there’s not one darn thing I can do to change the situation if that is indeed what the situations is (all signs indicate that it is).
I wish you well, man. I will keep on saying that with a hope that one of the times I say it the message will get through to a part of you that remains capable of hearing it.