“I Foresee a Future Financial Bloggers Conference Where EVERY SESSION Will Be Devoted to Teaching Bloggers How to Transform Their Blogs into Valuation-Informed Indexing Blogs.”

Set forth below is the text of a comment that I put to another blog entry at this site:

How exactly do you intend to make that kind of money by ‘teaching’ something?

It wouldn’t be possible to list all the ways even in one of those lengthy posts that I have become famous for, Laugh.

Books, speeches, podcasts, coaching, and on and on and on.

Why the heck do you think the Wall Street Con Men are so intent on keeping millions of middle-class investors from learning what the peer-reviewed academic research of the past 32 years really says?

They have been making BILLIONS teaching the OPPOSITE of what the research shows.

And you don’t think that there is HUNDREDS of BILLIONS to be made giving honest advice re stock investing?

You’re kidding yourself.

This is a money field. There is TONS of money to be made in this field.

And there are MILLIONS of middle-class investors in desperate need of HONEST investing advice.

I mean no personal dig. But your suggestion that there is not BILLIONS to be made offering HONEST INVESTING ADVICE is foolish in the extreme.

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

You know how I gave that five-minute talk at FinCon13? I foresee a future FinCon where EVERY SESSION will be devoted to teaching bloggers how to transform their blogs into Valuation-Informed Indexing blogs. Investors have been DELUGED with the smelly Buy-and-Hold garbage for DECADES now. And you don’t think there is a huge and hungry market for the real stuff, for advice that works in the real world?

The market and the demand couldn’t possibly be larger. The opportunities here couldn’t possibly be bigger.

Why the heck do you think the Wall Street Con Men support your Campaign of Terror against us? They are trying to hold onto the huge GRQ cash cow.

I mean, come on.



  1. Anonymous says

    “You’re kidding yourself.”

    No, Rob, you are kidding yourself. You have already been given examples of many portfolios (that you call buy and hold) that are easier for people to implement, take emotion out of investing and give superior returns.

  2. Rob says

    I hope that I am not kidding myself, Anonymous.

    I acknowledge that, if I were, I would probably be the last to know.

    I wish you well.


  3. Rob says

    The tricky thing about cognitive dissonance is that those suffering from it don’t know that they are suffering from it, Anonymous.

    I say all the time that my many Buy-and-Hold friends are suffering from cognitive dissonance. I suppose that some of them may think that I am the one who is suffering from it.

    I don’t think that’s so. But then I wouldn’t, would I?

    I don’t offer guarantees on any of my claims. I never went to investing school. I never managed a big fund. I think that anyone who would accept what I say about stock investing just because I say it is a damn fool.

    I give it my best shot, though. I say what I believe. I try as hard as I can to be fair to the other side and to hear them out. That’s all that any of the flawed humans can do, in my assessment.

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


  4. Trebor Martin says

    Will you allow one financial blog to be about insurance or annuities or something else not related to VII?

  5. Rob says

    Of course.

    There is no fraud if you do the thing you say you are doing.

    You could have a blog about day trading and there would be no place for posts about Valuation-Informed Indexing. That’s obvious.

    But you can’t have a board or blog that purports to be about peer-reviewed research-based investment strategies and then prohibit discussion of the last 33 years of peer-reviewed academic research. That’s an exercise in deception.

    What possible good purpose could there be in tricking people that way?

    That’s why Bernie Madoff was sent to prison. He issued pieces of paper that claimed that there were certain transactions that had been entered but in reality those transactions had never been entered. That’s deception. That’s fraud. There’s no good purpose served by it. It is a crime.

    Why have discussions that purport to be about what the peer-reviewed academic research in this field says about safe withdrawal rates and then ban honest reports of what the peer-reviewed academic research says? There are going to be people who believe you and you are obviously responsible for the losses suffered by those people. Those people suffered those losses as a result of your trickery.

    Do I really need to explain this to you, Trebor? Is there something in what I am saying that is not 100 percent obvious?

    Is there any field of human endeavor other than stock investing in the Buy-and-Hold Era in which people view deception and intimidation and getting numbers wrong in studies as a good thing?

    Why are you so adamant that only wrong numbers be reported?

    What bad result do you believe will follow from permitting honest posting?


  6. Anonymous says


    The owner of the Board can have any topic they desire and can decide on the content. The board owner can decide to kick anyone off if they feel that that person is disruptive and could negatively impact the community.

  7. Rob says

    You are wrong, Anonymous. There is no exception in the law against financial fraud for those who own web sites. The same laws apply to them that apply to anyone else.

    And it is not “disruptive” of me to post honestly on the numbers my friends use to plan their retirements. In fact, thousands of them have thanked me profusely for doing so. It has been surprising to some to learn how they have been lied to. But that’s a good surprise. People planning retirements need to know the truth about stock investing. Those who engage in death threats ain’t telling the truth.

    The disruption has been from those working a con. If Greaney’s retirement study did not get the numbers wildly wrong, there never would have been a single death threat or a single demand for an unjustified board banning or a single act of defamation or a single threat to get a single academic researcher fired from a single job.

    I am proud to have exposed your con and I am confident that there will be millions of middle-class investors calling for you to be put in prison following the next price crash. At that point, all the rest of us will pull together to rebuild our country from the damage done to it during the Buy-and-Hold years.

    I will continue posting honestly and I will continue urging all others to do so as well. I will testify honestly about your many, many acts of financial fraud.

    I wish you well.


  8. Rob says

    If owning a web site were all you needed to do to be exempt from the laws on financial fraud, Bernie Madoff would have been sure to have purchased a web site.

    I mean. come on.


  9. Evidence Based Investing says

    I foresee a future FinCon where EVERY SESSION will be devoted to teaching bloggers how to transform their blogs into Valuation-Informed Indexing blogs.

    Your track record in predicting the future is not strong.

  10. Rob says

    It’s not terribly strong.

    When I worked up the courage to put up that fateful May 13, 2002, post, I knew there was going to be some nasty stuff coming my way. I figured we would see one day of abusive posting, maybe two, at the outside three.

    I think it would be fair to say that the joke was on me re that one.

    Maybe I am going to be wrong re the prison thing and about the financial bloggers conference thing too. I am not God. I could be wrong.

    I am telling you what I think, nothing more and nothing less. You are obviously free to adopt another take.


  11. Anonymous says

    Bernie Madoff wasn’t discussing financial theory on chat boards, he was running a Ponzi scheme. Apples and oranges.

  12. Sensible Investor says

    Rob, you seem to be alone in this VII crusade. Haven’t you ever considered that you might be wrong about this?

  13. Rob says

    Bernie Madoff wasn’t discussing financial theory on chat boards, he was running a Ponzi scheme. Apples and oranges.

    Buy-and-Hold is a Ponzi scheme, Anonymous. Shiller explains why in his book, which was published in March 2000. The book was a best-seller. Shiller was awarded the Nobel prize in Economics for his “revolutionary” (his word) findings. If every middle-class investor knew that a Nobel Prize winner thinks that Buy-and-Hold is a Ponzi scheme, there would be a lot fewer people following Buy-and-Hold strategies today.

    The people who invested in Madoff’s fund didn’t wake up one morning saying “I think I’ll go put all my retirement money in a Ponzi scheme today.” They were tricked. All Ponzi schemes succeed as the result of trickery.If Buy-and-Hold were a legitimate strategy, there never would have been a single death threat or a single demand for a single unjustified board banning or a single act of defamation or a single threat to get a single academic researcher fired from a single job. Those are all signs of a Ponzi scheme. Because no Ponzi scheme can survive without that sort of trickery.

    If Buy-and-Hold were a legitimate strategy, you would be defending it in very, very different ways. The jury that hears your case is going to hear about the trickery and abuse you engaged in to defend this “strategy.”

    The losses caused by Madoff are a drop of water in the Atlantic ocean compared to the losses caused by Buy-and-Hold. That’s the apples and oranges part of the comparison. Buy-and-Hold is Bernie Madoff times 5,000.


  14. Rob says

    Rob, you seem to be alone in this VII crusade. Haven’t you ever considered that you might be wrong about this?

    I have considered whether I might be wrong and looked for evidence to support that view every day of the past 12 years of my life, Sensible.

    I am not alone.

    My work is rooted in the research of Yale Economics Professor Robert Shiller. Shiller was awarded the Nobel prize in Economics last year. Having the support of a winner of the Nobel prize in Economics ain’t being alone.

    I am the co-author of the mot important piece of peer-reviewed research published in this field in the past 30 years. Having your name on a piece of research that shows millions of middle-class investors how to reduce the risk of stock investing by 70 percent ain’t being alone.

    I have over 200 quotes posted at the “People Are Talking” section of the site. Many of the quotes are by top-name experts in the field. Having that many supportive quotes by top-name experts ain’t being alone.

    Jack Bogle, whom I rank as the second most important figure in this field, thinks enough of my work that he went along with having the entire Bogleheads Forum moved to another location rather than take the risk of appearing at an event with me in which he would be expected to respond in an effective way to my questioning. Impressing the second most important figure in the field to that extent ain’t being alone.

    Former Financial Analysts Journal Editor Rob Arnott wrote me to tell me that my investing ideas are “sound.” That ain’t being alone.

    Thousands of my fellow community members have expressed a desire that honest posting be permitted on our boards and blogs so that they can hear what I have to say about how investing works. That ain’t being alone.

    Millions of people lost their jobs in this economic crisis, an economic crisis that my work shows was caused by the reckless promotion of Buy-and-Hold strategies. Those millions all want what I have to offer to become known to every person on this planet. That ain’t being alone.

    Thousands of entrepreneurs saw their businesses fail in the Buy-and-Hold Crisis. Those thousands want what I have to offer to become known to every person on this planet. That ain’t being alone.

    Millions of people from both the left (The Occupy Wall Street Movement) and the right (The Tea Party Movement) have begun to lose confidence in the ability of our political system to be responsive to the concerns of millions of its citizens because of the foolishness we saw in the wake of the onset of the economic crisis with people ignoring the obvious cause of the crisis (Buy-and-Hold caused $12 trillion in Pretend Money to be created and the loss of that $12 trillion in buying power caused the economy to collapse) want what I have to offer to become discussed at every board and blog on the internet so that we can begin to see some healing. That ain’t being alone.

    Millions of middle-class people are in the process of seeing their retirements fail as a result of the 12-year cover-up of the errors in the Old School safe-withdrawal-rate studies. Those people are looking for the explanations of what happened to them that are contained in the thousands of pages of this web site. That ain’t being alone.

    I’ve written e-mails to 30,000 academic researchers letting them know about the threats you made to intimidate Wade Pfau into silence on the realities of stock investing when he “crossed” you by publishing honest research and a good number of them sent back to me exceedingly kind and intelligent and helpful responses. That ain’t being alone.

    I gave a presentation to the last Financial Bloggers Conference reporting on why Buy-and-Hold is the past and Valuation-Informed Indexing is the future and heard the applause of hundreds of my fellow community members learning about the truth in this area for the first time and enjoyed the hours of discussion of these issues that followed from a small group that came up to share a beer with me after the event. That ain’t being alone.

    I have written scores and scores of Guest Blog Entries which have inspired wonderful, thought-provoking discussions and which earned me the effusive praise of my peers. That ain’t being alone.

    I have done work that fulfills the boyhood dream of my good friend and hero Jack Bogle, making the change in his model for understanding how stock investing works that makes his approach workable in the real world for the first time. Thousands of my Buy-and-Hold friends have been looking for years for the resolutions to the contradictions in the Buy-and-Hold concept that were needed to make that long-deferred dream a reality and those people will be celebrating my work for many decades to come. That ain’t being alone.

    I am alone in only one sense.

    People are afraid to speak out about the intimidation tactics of you Goons. People hate seeing death threats. People hate seeing demands for unjustified board bannings. People hate seeing tens of thousands of acts of defamation. People hate seeing threats to get academic researchers fired from their jobs. I am not entirely alone even on that score. I share the feelings of repulsion that virtually every person living on this planet feels toward that sort of behavior. The only sense in which I am alone even in this respect is that I believe that the way to overcome you Goons is to expose your behavior to the sunlight. Most others are still too afraid to speak up. That will change following the next price crash, when they see how serious the threat is that you pose to you way of life. Then I will not be alone even on that score.

    You are the one who is alone, Sensible. You are the one going to prison. To be sent to prison is to have your peers reject you completely, to have the society you live in declare that your behavior is so sub-human that you can no longer be permitted to walk freely among others. That is an isolation that I don’t wish on my worst enemies (and indeed I have worked hard to get your prison sentence reduced to the extent possible).

    I have a battle to fight. There is evil in the world. There have always been people who see the accomplishments of others and feel drawn not to learn from them and achieve great things on their own but to equalize things by tearing down the good work that in their minds makes them look small and insignificant. But I nam ot the one who is alone. If I were alone, I would pose no threat to you Goons. It is precisely because there are so many millions seeking to understand for the first time how stock investing really works that you hate me with such a burning and all-consuming hate.

    Bernie Madoff is alone, Sensible.

    And you are Bernie Madoff times 5,000.

    I want no part of it.

    I offer the hand of kindness. Always. But not once in 12 years have I given a second’s thought to betraying my country. I won’t do that in the next 12 billion years either.

    Why? Because when I violate the laws of the United States, when I betray my country, then I truly become alone in a way that I never want to be alone.

    The people of the United States are traveling down some rocky road today. That much is so. We will overcome. We will prevail. It is those who doubt that our economic and political systems work any longer who will find themselves in days to come the lonely ones.

    We humans made a mistake. It happens. We will figure things out and we will turn things around. You are too far down the dark path to turn around. To be lost in that terrible dark place must be a lonely feeling indeed.

    I ask myself every day whether I have gotten something wrong, Sensible. Every day. Because I never want to find myself in the lonely place that you find yourself in today.

    When I discover that I have gotten something wrong (it has happened on a few occasions over the past 12 years), I quickly ask to be able to come to the front of the room and say the magic words “I” and “Was” and “Wrong.” Because those words end the loneliness. Once I have said those words, I no longer have anything to hide. Once I say those words, I am again playing a role in the community of people living under an economic and political system that works.

    I pray that I never face a temptation to play it the other way. I am a flawed human and so I cannot dismiss entirely the possibility that it could someday happen. So I pray. Not as often as I should but now and again at least. I will have to hope that that gives me enough strength to make it safely to the other side.

    And I pray for you, my lonesome friend. I pray that there is a spark of kindness within you for your friends and co-workers and neighbors and fellow community members that will one day save you. It happens. People tell me to give up on you Goons. I don’t feel comfortable giving up on anyone. That’s not the answer. Love is the answer. Love is the thing that keeps me from feeling alone through those times when a good number of my friends are afraid to speak up.

    Love prevails in the end, Sensible. You cannot fathom how, but it does. You keep forgetting that I read the last page of the story before I dared to venture forward with that crazy-brave post of the morning of May 13, 2002. I would have had to have been off my meds to have dared try that one without reading the last page first! I mean, come on!


  15. Rob says

    Have you asked Jack Bogle how often he questions himself as to whether he might be wrong, Sensible?

    If you have not done so, you need to do so. Jack is one of the flawed humans. He makes mistakes. He needs his friends to encourage him to acknowledge his mistakes rather than to pay heed to the self-destructive impulse to cover them up.

    I ask this question of myself every day. Bogle (and all the other Buy-and-Holders) needs to be asking this question of himself a lot more often than he has in the past.


  16. Rob says

    You’re wrong, Anonymous. You need to read the book.

    And lots of others need to start talking more frankly about the difference between the model rooted in Fama’s research (Buy-and-Hold) and the model rooted in Shiller’s research (Valuation-Informed Indexing). Both Fama and Shiller were awared the Nobel prize. They teach opposite things. So they can’t possibly both be right.

    The most important economic and political issue before us today is the question of whether Fama or Shiller is right. We should be discussing that at every board and blog on the internet every day. We all need to know the answer to this one. The only possible way to figure it out is to talk it over.

    Say that Bogle truly believes in Buy-and-Hold (I believe he does). He should get up on stage, talk about the arguments that Shiller and I make as to why Buy-and-Hold is a Ponzi scheme and then respond to them. Then all the people listening in get to decide who is right and how to invest their retirement money. That’s how our system works.

    Shiller identifies his findings as “revolutionary.” Please tell me one way in which Buy-and-Hold has changed as a result of these revolutionary findings. There is not one. Buy-and-Hold today is the same thing as it was before Shiller published his research or wrote his book. Going by how you Buy-and-Holders act, one would think that nothing has happened. Your claim that Shiller has not identified Buy-and-Hold as a Ponzi scheme lacks credibility because you cannot identify any way that anything that Shiller has said has had any effect on anything. So far as the Buy-and-Holders are concerned, Shiller has never said anything that wasn’t known to the Buy-and-Holders long before Shiller published his research.

    I say otherwise. I say that Shiller is right that his findings are “revolutionary.” I say that Shiller’s research has changed everything we know about how stock investing works in a fundamental way. I say that Buy-and-Hold needs to be entirely redone to reflect the last 33 years of peer-reviewed research in this field.

    And I say that I have every right to talk about the implications of Shiller’s findings on every discussion board and blog on the internet. The continued promotion of investing strategies that have been entirely discredited by the academic research for three decades now is killing us. We need to move on. There are millions of people whose lives have been ruined by the Buy-and-Hold Crisis and we all need to start pulling together to help them. If we don’t, we will be getting a taste of what it is like to be in their circumstances when the continued promotion of Buy-and-Hold brings on the next price crash.

    Do you ever stop to think that maybe you are wrong, Anonymous?


  17. Anonymous says

    You are wrong, Rob. No where in the book do I are the words “buy and hold is a ponzi scheme. “


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