Harold Pollack's advice:
Max your 401k or equivalent employee contribution
Buy inexpensive, well diversified mutual funds such as Vanguard Target 20XX funds
Never buy or sell and individual security. The person on the other side of the table knows more than you do about this stuff
Save 20% of your money
Pay your credit card balance in full every month
Maximize tax-advantages savings vehicles like Roth, SEP and 529 accounts.
Pay attention to fees. Avoid actively managed funds.
Make financial advisor commit to a fiduciary standard
Promote social insurance programs to help people when things go wrong
Bucky Woody's version is somewhat tighter, and perhaps more approachable to people of all income levels; The Washington Post's Ezra Klein explains.
UPDATE: Gabe Rivera simplifies further:
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