For SQL 2008, Books Online has been revised to say the following (per Connect item 476001):
"To create the best query plans when you are using a table on a linked server, the query processor must have data distribution statistics from the linked server. Users that have limited permissions on any columns of the table might not have sufficient permissions to obtain all the useful statistics, and might receive a less efficient query plan and experience poor performance. If the linked serveris an instance of SQL Server, to obtain all available statistics, the user must own the table or be a member of the sysadmin fixed server role, the db_ownerfixed database role, or the db_ddladmin fixed database role on the linkedserver."
This is a poor solution from a security standpoint.