Set forth below is the text of a comment that I recently posted to another blog entry at this site:
I guess the difference is that most people 1) actually try to adapt and change their approach I.e. Learn from failure and 2) define parameters and limits on the extent of their efforts I.e. Limit their exposure and depth of commitment.
In the absence of these things you are likely to fail indefinitely with no recourse and look like a loon while persisting.
I don’t see any failure here, Laugh. I see a success bigger than anything I imagined possible when I started doing this kind of work. 100 percent of the evidence supports Valuation-Informed Indexing. 0 percent supports Buy-and-Hold. The shift from Buy-and-Hold to Valuation-Informed Indexing is the most important shift in the history of personal finance. I am the lead advocate of Valuation-Informed Indexing. It doesn’t get any better than that.
You describe my work as a “failure” because it hasn’t produced a dime for me in 13 years. That’s not because of anything that I have done. That’s because of things that the Wall Street Con Men have done and things that their Internet Goon Squads (that’s you!) have done. So the only question is — Can they continue to get away with this massive act of financial fraud indefinitely?
I sure don’t think so. The next price crash is likely to bring on the Second Great Depression. Once we see that amount of human misery, even Bogle is going to flip. Once Bogle flips, everybody flips. No one is going to be afraid of you Goons once Bogle flips. I mean, come on.
I get the general idea of what you mean by “limiting exposure and depth of commitment.” I certainly acknowledge that I have elected high exposure and a great depth of commitment. But we have a tiger by the tale here!
I became a journalist for a reason. I love explaining things to people, helping people to better understand things they need to understand. I believe that I was put on Planet Earth to do that sort of work. Writing about this massive act of financial fraud and about what the last 34 years of peer-reviewed research tells us about how stock investing works in the real world is the most important political/economic story of my lifetime. Would you really think that I would walk away from that given my love for this sort of work?
I cannot walk away from that.
Others have. Lots of people who know at least in outline the true reason why we are suffering through an economic crisis keeps their mouths shut. I marvel at that. I like those people. They are good people and smart people. I accept that someone can be a good person and a smart person and not see this thing in quite the same light as I see it.
But I cannot see it the way they see it. The shift from Buy-and-Hold to Valuation-Informed Indexing is the biggest advance in the history of personal finance. The peer-reviewed research that I co-authored with Wade Pfau shows that we can reduce the risk of stock investing by 70 percent just by opening the internet to honest posting on the peer-reviewed research of the past 34 years. And we already have laws in place protecting our right to do that. We have laws making it a felony for you Goons to engage in the tactics that you have engaged in to block millions of middle-class people from learning what they need to learn to protect their retirement money from the Wall Street Con Men. Beat that!
When you talk about me not making money for the first 13 years of Our Debate About Permitting a Debate, you are referring to the dark side of this matter. There is indeed a dark side. The dark side is indeed very, very dark. But the bright side of this matter is 50 times more bright than the dark side is dark. We are seeing Jack Bogle’s dream come true before our eyes. Valuation-Informed Indexing is what Bogle was aiming at when he developed the Buy-and-Hold concept. This is the first true research-based investing strategy. This liberates millions of people to live better lives than they ever imagined possible in the Buy-and-Hold Era.
I love Jack Bogle. I love his vision. I love playing a big role in the effort to see his dream come true. I expect to be working side by side with Jack and lots of my other Buy-and-Hold friends when we all make it together to the other side of The Big Black Mountain.
I certainly don’t regret one second of the past 13 years. This has been my best moment (it’s been a LONG moment, to be sure). This is the thing that I hope and expect to be remembered by. This is the thing that I will point to when trying to explain to my boys what it means to be a man, to live a good life that you can look back at with pride and satisfaction.
We’ll see how it goes.
I hope that you can find it in your heart to wish me luck with at least a tiny portion of that Goon-infected mind of yours.
My best and warmest wishes to you and yours.