Funny how you say look at the long term chart... You just proved why this is not something to hold long. If you were intelligent enough, you would notice it has gone down indefinitely and is near its all-time low and continues to make all-time lows. This will not retrace. It is not mean reverting. The effects of contango decay permanently eat away at NAV, so the only way for this to ever retrace to previous levels is if backwardation is present for a significant amount of time. But if knew the nature of VIX futures, you'd know that they are in contango 90-95% of the time. So in actuality, not just theory, this does go down forever (thus the reverse splits every few months).