Set forth below is the text of a comment that I recently posted to the discussion thread for another blog entry at this site:
Ben Graham basically said the same thing in his famous book that has been read the world over.
And the market still behaved the same. You are a grain of sand in the ocean. And you are a lot less influential, articulate, congruent, and sensible than Ben.
So your crusade is doomed in a very sad way. I hope you saved money for your kids college at least.
You are right about Ben Graham. I certainly have never said that I am the only person who has ever believed in sensible, research-based investing strategies. About 10 percent of the population believes in what Ben Graham and Rob Bennett believe. That’s millions of people.
You are also right that the market continued to behave the same way following the publication of Graham’s famous book. But conditions are not the same. In the day when Graham published his book, it was mostly rich people who invested heavily in stocks. Today we have millions of middle-class people trying to provide for their retirements by investing in stocks. And of course we now have 36 years of peer-reviewed research showing what works — we did not have that in Graham’s day. I believe that we are going to need to find a way to get accurate and honest and research-based investing advice out to those millions of people.
As just one illustration of how things have changed, we did not have middle-class people seeking to retire early in Graham’s. We obviously have that today or else there would have been no Retire Early board at which demonstrably false safe-withdrawal rare claims needed to be corrected in May 2002. The smelly Buy-and-Hold garbage pushed so relentlessly by the Wall Street Con Men and the members of their various internet Goon squads does a lot more harm to a lot more people today than it did when Graham pointed out the errors in the pure Get Rich Quick approach. So I am 100 percent certain that we will be able to get a good number of people interested in cleaning up the massive corruption in this field in the days following the next price crash. The comments we have seen from thousands of our fellow community members during the first 15 years of your Campaign of Terror against our board and blog communities certainly points in that direction in any event.
I don’t think the crusade is doomed, Laugh. I don’t think that as a society we would have made financial fraud a felony if we didn’t feel strongly about this sort of thing. A people that put Bernie Madoff in prison for a relatively tiny act of financial fraud is not going to take kindly to seeing most of its retirement savings wiped out by a small number of multi-millionaire con men supported by an insanely abusive gang of internet Goons. But we will see, you know?
I naturally wish you the best of luck with it, Goon friend.