It’s not that stupid. Yes, getting to the top in a competitive field is hard work in almost any environment, but what it takes to succeed in a field and where the opportunities are change over time with the economic, social, and technological environment. Without skill, it’s hard to build lasting success, but even with skill, timing and luck come into play. Buffet himself says this: he was lucky enough to be born in a time where the set of skills he has is rewarded. Were he born just 100 years earlier, he very likely would have been something like a cobbler or a lawyer, or been killed in the Civil War. Had he been born today, maybe he would not have discovered enough net-nets to attract an investor base. None of this means that he doesn’t have talent or that his success should be poo-hooed, but this is not religion and he is not the messaiah (nor does he claim to be).
It is worth looking at how the landscape changes decade by decade and which principles are universal and which principles are applicable only in certain epochs. Markets may not be efficient today, but they were certainly less efficient before. Before 1975 it was not even possible to invest in an index fund unless you personally bought a little piece of everything and rebalanced it yourself.
If it’s not even possible to invest in “the market” as a whole, you can bet that there are going to be enormous mispricings all over the place. With today’s investment vehicles, computing technology, communications, and market structure, mispricings still likely exist, but they are not nearly as easy to find.