Set forth below is the text of a comment that I recently posted to the discussion thread for another blog entry at this site:
As you suggested, here’s the top of the results from a Google search on “financial fraud”:
“Financial fraud can be broadly defined as an intentional act of deception involving financial transactions for purpose of personal gain.”
There are no financial transactions on blogs or message boards. Therefore there is no financial fraud happening on blogs or message boards.
Were you able to follow that lengthy chain of complex logic? I’ll understand if you got lost. Or if you simply dismiss it as “word games”.
I was there when thousands of my friends were using Greaney’s study to determine when to hand in their resignations to their high-paying jobs.
I was there when those thousands of people showed great excitement about the amazing discussions that followed my famous post of the morning of May 13, 2002, pointing out that the study does not contain an adjustment for the valuation level that applies on the day the retirement begins.
I was there when Greaney’s Goon Squad responded with death threats and other insanely abusive acts to intimidate those who had worked up the courage to post honestly on the errors in his study to stop doing so.
I was there when the site administrator indicated that, while he personally believed that it would be “ideal” if honest posting on retirement planning could be permitted at a retirement planning board, Motley Fool would be banning those who posted honestly re the errors in the study and celebrating those who continued to promote the discredited research because Get Rich Quick strategies are what bring in the most money in the short term
I was there when the same pattern played out at scores of other site: (1) a percentage of the population of investors showing great interest in learning the realities of stock investing; (2) a group of Buy-and-Holders becoming insanely abusive in their efforts to stop any discussion of the last 36 years of peer-reviewed research in this field; and (3) experts in the field showing regrets that they cannot do anything to clean up the field without putting their own careers at risk but ultimately deciding that they cannot stop this massive act of financial fraud (Shiller showed in 1981 that valuations affect long-term returns) cannot be stopped without being made to pay a price that is greater than they are willing to pay.
We are all obviously going to pull together to bring the Buy-and-Hold Crisis to an end in the days following the next price crash. We obviously don’t have any choice. Our economic system cannot continue to function if there is no way for millions of people who need to know how stock investing works to plan their affairs are not able to gain access to the information they need because a mistake that was made back in the 1960s has been covered up by a small number of Wall Street Con Men for 36 years now. We all obviously need to have a functioning economic system. So I have a funny feeling that we are going to pull together to expose the con.
Will people go to prison when that happens?
I believe that people will go to prison.
You say that you don’t believe it will happen. Well, you don’t believe it then.
How does that have anything to do with me?
You are obviously not going to go to prison just because I say that I believe you will. I have zero power to send anyone to prison. I have zero desire to send anyone to prison.
If you go to prison, it is going to be because there are millions of middle-class investors who are upset that your massive act of financial fraud destroyed their lives.
Is that not so?
I cannot control what those millions of middle-class investors do. If they don’t want to send you to prison, they won’t do it. If they want to send you to prison, there’s nothing that I can do to stop them.
What is it that you want from me, Anonymous?
Is there something that I can do for you that would in some way make you happier in how you feel about these matters?
I have offered to put forward some words aimed at getting your prison sentence reduced a bit. That you have already got without having to offer anything in return or without even having to ask for it.
Is there something else that I can do for you that doesn’t involve me going to the wrong side of the felony line myself?
I am going to testify honestly, okay? That one is not up for discussion. Is there something else?