Set forth below is the text of a comment that I recently posted to another blog entry at this site:
Even if you did not violate specific rules of these boards you made them so absolutely unbearable the mods had to ban you or else everyone else would simply stop coming to the board.
You just respond to other peoples question by rambling off topic about what YOU want to talk about. I would love to be a fly on a way and see you interact in real life with someone. I would be curious to see if you are as socially inept even when discussing things other than finance.
How can you seriously claim their is a Buy and Hold Mafia preventing open discussion when you were allowed to speak at FINCON. You spoke, people listened, and everyone thought you were an idiot. What’s hard to understand about that?
I didn’t violate any rules. Not once. That’s a stone cold fact. Even a number of Buy-and-Holders have acknowledged this.
It is true that the moderators have been put in a tough spot. It is true that many community members have told site owners that they would leave their sites if I was not removed. That’s ALSO a stone cold fact. And I DO have sympathy for those site owners (even though I do NOT believe that they are right to ban honest posting).
I NEVER go off topic. That claim is false.
I have zero problems interacting with all kinds of people in real life. And I of course had zero problem on the internet until the morning of May 13, 2002, when I put up my famous post pointing out the errors in the Old School SWR studies. I was the most popular poster at the Motley Fool site on May 12, 2002. By September 27, 2002, there were 200 of my fellow community members endorsing a post containing threats to kill my wife and children if I continued to post honestly re the numbers that people use to plan their retirements. It’s the investing issue that is the problem here.
Not one person at FinCon said that they thought I was a idiot. Not one. I received loud applause when people heard the title of my talk (“How to Become the Most Hated Blogger on the Internet”). A number of people came up to me afterwards and told me how impressed they were. We sat around and talked and ate for several hours. It was all friendliness, no friction. A woman who I was planning to hire to help me with marketing efforts told me that she asked people sitting near her what they thought and they told her I sounded “bitter.” She told me that she would be thrilled to work with me once you Goons were no longer in the picture. She does not want to have organized groups attacking here site and destroying her business.
I agree with your point that the Buy-and-Hold Mafia does not possess absolute power. It’s not just that I talked at FinCon. Shiller published his book and it was reviewed in major publications and it was a best-seller. He even won a Nobel prize. And people like Todd Tresidder have sites where they openly discuss implications of Shiller’s finding that valuations affect long-term returns. So word IS getting out. But far too slowly. We very much need to pick up the pace here.
The core problem is that there are two academic models that explain how the stock market works. Most of the experts in this field have led people to believe that there is only one. That is simply false. There is Buy-and-Hold, the model rooted in a belief in Fama’s research. And there is Valuation-Informed Indexing, the model rooted in Shiller’s research. Both Fama and Shiller have been awarded Nobel prizes. Every community member’s right to post honestly re his or her belief in EITHER model must be respected at every discussion board and blog on the internet. There can never be a single exception.
All of the trouble that has come about is because of decisions that were made long before I came on the scene. Bogle should have given a speech within one week of the day that Shiller published his “revolutionary” (Shiller’s word) research. He should have told people that there was now research that threw doubt on the Buy-and-Hold Model. If he still personally believed in Buy-and-Hold (I believe that he did), he should have said that too. But he should have let all his followers know that there were now reasonable grounds for doubt.
Had he done that, no one would have been shocked when I questioned the Greaney study. Had Bogle given that speech back in 1981, every study published after that date would have contained language indicating what model it followed and directing people to literature providing background on the alternative model. Then there would have been no grounds for charges of fraud. Everything would have been done out in the open. We all would be friends. We all would converse with each other in an environment of mutual respect and affection, We all would have for 33 years now have been enjoying a wonderful learning experience together.
It didn’t play out that way. Humans are not angels. We made some mistakes and things got on the wrong track. Now we have millions of people whose retirements are riding on the validity of the Buy-and-Hold Model. It makes those people sick to think that they have been following a strategy that may not work out in the long run. I am not wrong to tell them that. It is our society as a whole that has failed them by keeping the truth from them for so many years.
People need to hear both sides, Anonymous. There are no grounds for legitimate controversies here. People MUST hear both sides to be able to make informed decisions as to how to invest their retirement money. I am 100 percent happy to work with any responsible parties to figure out how to get us from the horrible place where we are today to the wonderful place where we all long to be tomorrow.
Are you willing to lend a hand, Anonymous? Do you want to work with me to take this matter in a constructive and positive and life-affirming direction?
If you are, please let me know and we can get to work right away.