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Because confession is good for the soul, each of us should review our biggest investing mistakes of the last year and then share the ghoulish details on this discussion board.

No need to write the Great American (or in Jim G's case, Canadian) novel; just identify the company, your initial thesis, what went wrong, and how you intend not to repeat the mistake again.

Sometimes, of course, problems come out of left field. But I think we cause most of our own problems. ("The fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars, But in ourselves, that we are underlings." --from Shakespeare's Julius Caesar)

In looking over my bad decisions, for instance, each resulted from veering away from my well-defined process of 1) vetting earnings power, 2) making sure there is a durable competitive advantage, and 3) buying at discount to intrinsic value.

Buying and selling stocks is not for people who are afraid of making mistakes. On the other hand, there is no glory in making the same mistakes over-and-over. So let's see if we can improve our game by making a few investing resolutions for 2006.

My portfolio autopsy will appear on these pages in the next few weeks. I hope you will consider doing the same.

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