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By Neil Rubenstein
Observer columnist 

How Many Zero's is $13.9 Trillion (Current National Debt)


For those who read my commentary years ago remember I wrote about an experimental stem cell treatment to be used on patients with spinal cord injuries. It now appears Rancho Los Amigos will partner with USC to participate in a multi-million-dollar clinical study proving such therapy can restore key motor functions.

I just reread the April 25, 2017 issue of Time Magazine. In my opinion the cover story should be read by everyone as it discusses the $13.9 Trillion United States debt and the $42,998.12 every man, woman and child would need to pay it off.

Gas and electric utilities may soon be passing the savings from the recent federal tax overhaul back to the consumer. The corporate tax rate has been slashed form 35 percent to 21 percent. Don’t expect to use your refund for a cruise to Alaska, because the dough will probably be return over many years as a credit on your monthly statement.

Cities all over this great nation are burning the midnight oil thinking of ways to increase taxes and fees. For example, Scranton, PA has raised residents an additional $300 per year to collect trash. That’s up 68 percent from $178; in Long Beach, CA the city charges $250 fee for ambulance rides on top of the existing $1300 to $11900 and in Danville, Illinois the city enacted a $2 per month “public safety pension fee” to reduce the $100 million in owed to the police and fire department retirees Wall Street Journal.

A rating guide for pot shops is being considered by the County Health Department like the one used for restaurants. L.A. Daily News.

China’s aggressive actions have resulted in the Pentagon and Vietnam’s defense ministry to plan on an American aircraft carrier to make a port call in 2018. This will be the first visit since the end of the Vietnam War. American Legion Magazine.

Can you believe because I cannot; Kentucky Bill to outlaw child marriage is stalled in the legislature? Kentucky rates third in child marriages with only Texas and Florida ahead. From 2000 to 2015 more than 10,000 children were married in Kentucky. Under current law 16 and 17-year old can wed with parental permission, and children can marry even younger when there’s a pregnancy involved.

Charlie Sheen has listed his seven bed-room, seven-bathroom mansion in Mulholland Estate’s (Beverly Hills) for $9.9 million. The master suite comes equipped with a dumbwaiter for snacks from the kitchen, a screening room, a wet bar with neon signage and a cigarette machine. Charlie bought the property for $7.02 million in 20065. The 8,932 square foot mansion comes with two pools, a gazebo, a bar and a high-end kitchen. Get your check book ready-it won’t last long at this price.

I didn’t realize Beverly Hills median two-bedroom rent was approximately $4,050 per month while the national average was $1160.

There was a public celebration to honor legendary sports announcer Keith Jackson at the Rose Bowl on April 15, 2018. The free celebration was open to the public beginning at 4 p.m. the gates were opened at 3PM.

Do you remember Beverly Hills Doctor Zarrabi who allegedly was involved in the lap band weight loss surgeries from May 2010 to March 2016? The 1-800-Get-thin supposedly did a phony baloney billing scheme for approximately $250 million. If convicted of all charges the doctor could be gone for up to 20 years.

Beverly Hills Unified is asking voters to approve a bond issue of $385 million on the June 2018 ballot. Their Board of Education claims if passed it will cost property owners 4.4 cents on $100 assessed value. Many of us know I didn’t go to Culver High so someone help me out. If a home is assessed for a ridiculously low price of one million dollars how much more would his property tax, be?

3957 was the number of firearms discovered in carry-on bags at TSA checkpoints in U.S. in 2017 setting a new- record.

$1 billion was the amount spent at the box office by movie goers I the United States and Canada in February 2018 with 43 percent of that take going to Black Panther.

In 1954 some 64 years ago, an English runner ran the mile in less than four (4) minutes. It was Roger Bannister setting the record that lasted for what seemed like 100 years. Roger died on March 3, 2018 at 88 years old.

The top three states where undocumented lives:

7.2 % Nevada

6.1 % Texas

6.0 % California

For those who love their beer there is good news from Europe. Brew dog, a Scottish beermaker has announced plans to open its first hotel in early 2019. When the 26-room dog House hotel opens, guests will have access to cold brews straight from the comfort of their rooms. Each room will feature beer taps. The hotel which will be located at the brewer’s headquarters, will have rooms that overlook the beer making process.

It wasn’t that long-ago President Trump selected Dr. Ben Carson to be the Secretary of Housing Urban Development (HUD). Dr. Ben Carson kept a low profile that is until someone, perhaps Mrs. Carson dropped by the office and saw the condition of the furniture. Before you could say “Jackie Robinson” the store delivered chairs, tables, etc at a cost of over $30,000. The $64,000 question is why couldn’t somebody go to Ashley and buy the needed items on sale and use their rewards card?


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