Salsman vs. Buffet on Investing

Richard Salsman exposes the falsehoods behind the active vs passive false alternative in The Daily Capitalist.

Writes Salsman in “Buffett Won the Bet – and Missed the Point”:

Mr. Buffett writes, “Investors, on average and over time, will do better with a low-cost index fund than with a group of funds of funds.” Well, that’s surely true for capital whose owners are willing to forgo potentially higher returns in exchange for lower risk and the guaranteed mediocrity of average gains and losses. For all other capital, however, the opposite is true. It takes outsized gains like Mr. Buffett’s to inspire and arm us to make progress. Similarly it can take outsized gains and losses to expose the truth, promote the outperformers, and keep yesterday’s under-performing strategies and managers from interfering with a better tomorrow.

Active-passive is thus a false choice.  All investing success depends on active thinking, buying and selling.

Still, Buffett concludes with cynicism:

“Human behavior won’t change. Wealthy individuals, pension funds, endowments and the like will continue to feel they deserve something ‘extra’ in investment advice. Those advisors who cleverly play to this expectation will get very rich. This year the magic potion may be hedge funds, next year something else. The likely result from this parade of promises is predicted in an adage: ‘When a person with money meets a person with experience, the one with experience ends up with the money and the one with money leaves with experience.’”

It’s true that human nature is constant, but our natural capacity for reason and infinite progress is precisely what makes such cynicism naïve.  In all cases, better inputs make consistent outperformance possible. Berkshire Hathaway’s track record proves this for stock picking and allocating. Our track record proves this for using price relationships to forecast headwinds, tailwinds and inflection points, and to profitably allocate within one or more of the 5 major asset classes and subclasses.

Read the rest at The Daily Capitalist.

14 Years of Leonard Peikoff at the Ford Hall Forum Now Online

“In 1961, Ayn Rand received a speaking invitation from the Ford Hall Forum, an organization that sponsors free public lectures on social and political issues. She spoke there almost every year until her death. From 1982 to 2003, philosopher Leonard Peikoff continued that tradition. During this period, Peikoff gave over a dozen talks in which he applied Ayn Rand’s philosophy, Objectivism, to a wide range of topics. Peikoff’s talks are now available on ARI Campus and ARI’s YouTube channel. There are fourteen lectures for you to explore, including lesson 1: “The Sanction of the Victims.” This talk, written by Ayn Rand and presented movingly after Rand’s death by Peikoff, also includes his recollections of Ayn Rand’s final weeks, and his views on Objectivism’s future. Listen to Peikoff—Ayn Rand’s foremost student and today’s leading expert on Objectivism—deliver these landmark talks and apply Objectivism to such topics as education, medicine, the religious right, the fall of communism, art, crime, the O.J. verdict, America’s response to 9/11 and others.” — ARI

Links: ARI Campus and ARI’s YouTube channel

Brian Philips Online Course: The Principles of Property Rights

Brian Philips‘ online course on The Principles of Property Rights is now free online at Udemy.

Here is the course description:

Property rights have long been a part of America’s political heritage. Indeed, the Founding Fathers wrote extensively on the importance of protecting property rights. But property rights are under attack in America today. Part of the reason for the success of these attacks is imprecise or fuzzy thinking. Even many advocates of property rights are unable to clearly define the concept, and thus, they are unable to provide a consistent and principled defense. In this course, we will examine the principles that underlie property rights, as well as the principles underlying attacks on property rights. Only by understanding these principles can we clearly defend property rights and refute the claims of their enemies. Who is the target audience? Business owners harmed by regulations Property owners restricted by land-use regulations Organizations involved in defending property rights.

Link: The Principles of Property Rights

New Maria Montessori Education Podcast

“Let us imagine ourselves among a race of giants who differ from us in proportion as we differ from the child and we ourselves are forced to use the giant’s furniture, dishes and possessions. If we want to sit down, we have to climb on to a chair with our hands and feet. If we want to move the chair, we have to climb down the same way and move this great weight. We want to wash our hands but the [sink] is like a big bath tub. … It takes two hands to use a hairbrush. Everything is so high that we cannot use anything (without asking for help), doors to open, hooks on which to hang our clothes and other things. We are unable to do things we need to do and we feel the humiliation resulting from our failure to act. We certainly would disdain these giant people and not wish to live with them, if we knew they had prepared nothing so we might act. — Maria Montessori

“A century ago, Dr. Maria Montessori introduced the world to a new type of classroom — the “prepared environment” — which did away with the traditional teacher-as-master model in exchange for a wholly new method that encourages each child to happily develop mastery over himself. But what happens when a teacher or parent is no longer the “giant” ruler of the classroom or home, when children are allowed to direct their own development — won’t they then just go wild? No. In fact, in the right environment, the opposite occurs. As countless teachers and parents have experienced firsthand since 1907 (the year Dr. Montessori opened her original school in Rome), children truly transform themselves in Montessori classrooms and in Montessori homes. With adult guidance, they develop into independent individuals who are competent in the world, confident in themselves, and capable of connecting peacefully with others.” — Jesse McCarthy

To help introduce the Montessori Method to parents and teachers in the 21st century Jesse McCarthy of montessorieducation.com has launched a new podcast — now three episodes in. “Interviews range from What is Montessori?, to the challenges and fun of working with infants & toddlers, to becoming a Montessori parent. And there will be many more episodes and topics to come! … Current episodes range from about 20 to 30 minutes and offer listeners a chance to delve a little deeper into the world of thoughtful, down-to-earth parenting & teaching, with an emphasis on us adults growing right alongside children.”

You can listen in here: https://www.montessorieducation.com/podcast.

Pin It on Pinterest