For beginning or inexperienced investors, the beauty of "stay the course" is that it takes emotion out of the equation. If a beginning investor has a good plan with a sensible starting asset allocation that's appropriate for their needs — and rebalances when necessary — they can't make any big mistakes. If held for the long term, this naive portfolio will most likely accomplish its goals. To me, this is the wonderful advantage of the Boglehead investing philosophy over any other.
As an investor gains experience and emotional maturity, it seems perfectly reasonable to adopt other portfolio management techniques, e.g., adjusting duration on the bond side or adjusting equity allocation based on valuations. To me, these adjustments don't violate the "stay the course" maxim since they are calculated bets (which may or may not pay off) that are done entirely without emotion. The more sophisticated a passive investor becomes, the more nuanced the passive strategy can be, in my view. For a case in point, see John Bogle's latest interviews.
Last edited by Simplegift
on Mon Jul 01, 2013 3:54 pm, edited 1 time in total.