By John Paul Valdez

WHAT IS A 770 ACCOUNT? For those who have asked recently about a “770” account that seems to have gone viral please understand that the existence of insurance products of all kinds is hardly a mystery or a secret. Insurance as “whole” or “universal” allows premiums to be paid into an account as an investment that can have various tax advantages. Two things: 1) You have to die to collect unless you are going to borrow against your policy which involves a cost. 2) Insurance products generally pay less than investment options out on the open market because of the lower risk and deemed safety variables. Finally, this particular platform has been the subject of numerous internet scams. Anytime something sounds too good to be true, it is.

THE COST OF TRAFFIC during the rain needs more serious attention. Like our compatriots in New Jersey, ambulances and other life threatening emergencies are impeded when traffic becomes unmanageable. Commutes for workers become difficult or even cause absence from work altogether. Losses to business are enormous as the opportunity of doing business at all is put down when people are unable to get to their destination. This past weekend, even in the face of a well acknowledged winter storm looming, and various warnings thereto, absolutely no efforts were made to prepare the desert valley nor its visitors (in a tourist zone) to avoid the clearly predicted train wreck in slow motion that was the handling of the obvious. That is shameful and unacceptable.

Many postings were made to social media sites, and some articles in local periodicals wrote about the blockages and traffic as though it were some kind of surprise. Nothing could be further from the truth. The accidents on Ramon that occurred could have been easily predicted given all the already known inability to cope with the slightest rain storm.


Our government administrations at the city, county, state and federal level all fail us when they tax us without the infrastructure we need to provide for our own health, safety and welfare not to mention support to our tourist driven economy. If one calculates the losses created by all these unnecessary negative impacts of avoidable traffic blockages, it is easy to see that what is lacking is flood planning and coordination between the various cities and the various government agencies.

If we cannot overcome our desperate need for this infrastructure, we will simply blindly and unnecessarily impose artificial limits to investors and visitors who want very much to come to our otherwise so desirable and worthy desert valley.

Since this is a subject we only seem to think about during the two days a year it rains, let’s just pray it doesn’t cost anyone their life in the short run, and hope it rains near voting time, but not on election day. Otherwise we can’t even vote.

Questions and comments?