The LA Times reports that California Governor Jerry Brown, in a speech in Sacramento yesterday cited his experience in a Japanese Zen Buddhist monastery as the inspiration for fiscal responsibility in the California legislature.
"I think the real lesson here is that voters have trusted the elected representatives, maybe even trusted me to some extent, and now we've got to meet that trust. But we've got to make sure over the next few years that we pay our bills, we invest in the right programs, but we don't go on any spending binges like we did in the days when we had the dot-com boom."
When asked how he would maintain that discipline, Brown cited a mantra he recited every night before bed while studying at a Zen monastery in Japan in the 1980s.
"Desires are endless," he said. "I vow to cut them down."