First, there was Fred Schwed’s Where are the Customer’s Yachts?, which is still the standard bearer for why Money Managers are overpaid.
The Prologue opens more Matt Taibbi than Jason Zweig:
Wall Street brokers and active money managers use your relative lack of investment expertise to their benefit…not yours
Of course, they have a method That Will Work to solve this, which looks suspicuously like what those Active Money Managers say they do. And what you would think Economic Theory would tell you to do, which may be why they have the endorsement of Eugene (“the markets are too efficient”) Fama among many others.
Perhaps it’s time for economists to model why economic theory doesn’t work?
The last time people realized their money managers were taking them for a ride, the market basically sat still for a generation. Whether this dying text is a leading indicator is left as an exercise, though not an academic one.