REAL-ESTATE agents complain when I write about housing, and proclaim that there’s no better investment than a home. Insurance agents whine when I discuss insurance issues, and trumpet cash-value life insurance and tax-deferred annuities as the best things since slice bread. Financial advisors fire off fiery emails when I write about the advice business, and insist that the building blocks of financial success are stocks, bonds and an advisor’s wise counsel.
Maybe one of these groups is correct—but they can’t all be. As Upton Sinclair wrote, “It is difficult to get a man to understand something when his salary depends on his not understanding it.” Let’s face it: Would salesmen really be so enamored of equity-indexed annuities if they couldn’t earn double-digit commissions?