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Sacrifice over excess

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A dentist in Marin County once described to me the boomers in the 1970s who would come to his office with a cold sore on their lips and want a quick fix so they could go out the next weekend and enjoy the debauchery of the period. He would tell them: "I can give you some medicine and it will take two weeks to mend your sore, or I can not give you medicine and it will take two weeks to cure it." Today, we face a long recovery to an economic calamity that has been long in the making and will not be resolved with quick fixes. It will take time as well as a return to fundamental economic values. This is not about family values, but conservative -- not political -- personal financial values and wise public policies that favor savings over irrational debt, that give up short-term consumption for sacrifice, and that reward investment not speculation. Some of our current woes can be traced to the fictional narrative portrayed in the award-winning television series "...