How Times Have Changed


By Neil Rubenstein

Observer Columnist

I was scanning a California history book and came across Hong Yeng Chang. The State Supreme Court in 1800 denied Chang’s application to practice law because of the federal Chinese Exclusion Act even though he studied at Yale and graduated from Columbia Law School in 1886.

You just have to love the Los Angeles Police Department unless you just happen to be a taxpayer. Perhaps everyone remembers the paragraph in this column when the officers were given ticket quotas. They sued and the court awarded big bucks. Well, five Police Department recruits were hurt going through the academy and their city dumped them rather than giving them a position they could handle until they could return to their training. So, in 2010 they sued, the jury was out for just two days and the five “almost” cops will receive $12.2 million or $2,440,000 each.

Have you had a chance to read the May 2014 issue of “Worst Pills, Best Pills News” published by Public Citizen? The articles are always so informative but two in May’s issue, “Type 2 Diabetes” and “Beta Blockers Save Lives in COPD Patients After Heart Attacks,” were very, very enlightening.

Are you thinking about a vacation? Perhaps going to Guatemala might be in the cards – after all, beer there is cheaper than Coke.

Can it be true? Can it be true? On May 25 the 56 registered voters in Castrillo Matajudios, Spain voted to change the village name from “Kill Jews” to “Jews Hill.” Although no Jews live in the small town, many residents have Jewish roots and the town’s shield includes the Star of David.

The United States Supreme Court in April 2014 ruled 5 to 4 to uphold a tip-incited search of a California man’s trunk by the CHP. Someone dialed 911 and reported a reckless driver. The Highway Patrol found no driving violations but did find 30 lbs. of marijuana. A lot of “friends” will be calling the operator to report anonymous “crimes.”

A report from the Surgeon General says 480,000 Americans die from tobacco each year.

Men, are you taking selenium and/or Vitamin E in the belief these supplements may help prevent prostate cancer? Well, stop popping those pills and immediately call your doctor!!! Have him/her read the February 2014 analysis of Selenium and Vitamin E Cancer Prevention Trial (SELECT) in the “Journal of the National Cancer Institute.”

Many of us suffer with rheumatoid arthritis (RA), if you do try reading the Australian study published late last year in the “Annals of Rheumatic Diseases.” I was positively floored about those patients taking 3.7 to 5.5 grams a day of omega-3 for a year or so because they were twice as likely to go into remission and more likely to stop taking pain relievers. Always talk to your doctor before changing medicines.

The IRS from October 2010 through December 2010 paid $1 million to workers who owed back taxes. Makes sense to me.

Robin Williams put his Napa Valley area estate on the market for $29.9 million. It’s times like these I wish I had my checkbook with me.

Universal Student Housing will pay you up to $792 a month to allow a foreign college student the use of that extra bedroom in your home. Call (310) 824-4908.

From the folder labeled “Where has the time gone,” I see Communist forces took over South Vietnam 39 years ago.

It was almost three years ago NATO warplanes bombed Kadafi’s compound in Tripoli.

A Huntington Beach man was driving drunk, hit a motorcycle and killed the rider. The judge gave him one year in jail and suspended a five-year prison sentence.

Then there is the career criminal who loved to hold up banks, stole a car and burglarized several homes over 35 years. He received a sentence of 90 years to life as a third-striker.

And then there was an elderly gentleman who hit the gas rather than the brake and drove into the lobby of an Orange County Bank of America. Fortunately the paramedics were already there on another call. Don’t worry, the automobile driver was not cited or arrested.

Speaking as a veteran, those World War II soldiers truly suffered, living through six years of the Great Depression only to enlist or be conscripted into the military for four more years. And just think of the casualties: WWII, 1941-45, 291,557 – almost 200 killed every day for four years; Korean War, 1950-53, 36,574; Vietnam, 1965-75, 58,209; Persian Gulf, 1987, 148; Persian Gulf War, 1990-91, 382; Enduring Freedom, 2001-present, 2,322; Operation Iraqi Freedom, 2003-present, 4486. In our Golden State more than 15,000 of our homeless are veterans.

Every 24 hours we are one day closer to the big carbon tax we will be paying on gasoline on January 1, 2015.

For those who missed an article, all my commentaries can be found at by placing Rubenstein in that website’s search box.


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