This is a real conversation I had with someone recently:
Them: Why do we need publishers? We can publish without them!
Me: Who will license the book?
Them: Well, of course someone has to do that.
Me: And who will translate it?
Them: We have a translator.
Me: And don’t forget, you need a letterer and editor and layout person.
Them: Right, we can do that, too.
Me: And someone to manage the project so it makes deadlines and has quality control.
Them: Of course!
Me: And don’t forget someone to line up distribution, and you’ll need someone to do marketing.
Them: Right, yes.
Me: And, when you get all that together, you know what they call that?
Me: Congrats on recreating the concept of the publishing company from scratch. ^_^
To their credit, they got the point and were very gracious about it.