Monthly Archives: January 2018

LBN – Monday, January 22nd, 2018

*OPEN FOR BIZ –  Democrats Fold, Will Vote to Reopen Gov’t With a Promise From Mitch McConnell

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) announced Monday on the Senate floor that his party will provide enough votes to pass the Republican plan to reopen the federal government until at least February 8, contingent upon a promise from Majority Leader Mitch McConnell that he will thereafter open debate on an immigration bill protecting so-called “Dreamers” from deportation.

*Study: 82% of World’s Money Was Made by the Top 1% Last Year

Eighty-two percent of the money made last year went to the richest 1 percent of the world’s population, according to a report by anti-poverty charity Oxfam. With these numbers, the charity claimed that the gap between the global rich and poor has further increased. “Tax evasion, firms’ influence on policy, erosion of workers’ rights, and cost cutting” were the identified factors that contributed to the growing disparity. In this year’s report, the richest 42 people in the world had as much wealth as the poorest half. “However you look at it, this is an unacceptable level of inequality,” said Oxfam Chief ExecutiveMark Goldring. The report’s release coincides with the World Economic Forum in Davos, where issues of inequality are discussed but “fade away at the first resistance,” said Goldring.

*Mike Pence Says U.S. Embassy Will Open in Jerusalem Next Year:  

Vice President Mike Pence said on Monday that a new United States Embassy to Israel would open in Jerusalem before the end of 2019. Mr. Pence’s statement, made to the Israeli Parliament during a trip to the Holy Land, follows President Trump’s recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital last month, a move that overturned decades of American policy and international consensus on the status of the holy city. Palestinians claim Jerusalem as their capital or believe it should be divided, with East Jerusalem becoming the capital of a Palestinian state. The international consensus, previously supported by the United States, has been that the city’s status can be determined only through negotiations between the Israelis and the Palestinians. Arab lawmakers rose to their feet at the start of Mr. Pence’s speech in the Israeli Parliament and held up signs reading “Jerusalem is the capital of Palestine.” Ushers pulled down the signs and escorted them out of the room, to the applause of others in the hall.


*Book: Bannon Told Ivanka, ‘You Don’t Know What You’re Doing’

Another bombshell book on palace intrigue inside the TrumpWhite House will be published by the end of the month. This time it is the turn of Fox News host Howard Kurtz to dish on the personal battles and the gossip reverberating around the West Wing. The book, entitled “Media Madness: Donald Trump, the Press, and the War Over the Truth,” comes fresh on the heels of Michael Wolff’s “Fire and Fury.” According to excerpts detailed in The Washington Post, Kurtz presents a portrait of a chaotic West Wing, filled with leaks, amid a daily struggle by aides to respond to the president’s tweets. The former Daily Beast columnist also claims that many in the White House suspect the president himself and his daughter Ivanka have been the source of notable leaks to the press. He says aides call Trump’s behavior “Defiance Disorder,” a reference to his inability to follow the advice of his advisers. There were reportedly occasions, however, when Trump did side with advisers against his children—Kurtz recounts one meeting in the Oval Office in which Steve Bannon blamed Ivanka for a leak and Trump said to her: “Baby, I think Steve’s right here.” Bannon told Ivanka, according to Kurtz. “You love your dad. I get that. But you’re just another staffer who doesn’t know what you’re doing.”

*Facebook Admits: We ‘Can’t Guarantee’ We’re Good for Democracy

Facebook conceded Monday that social media may not be entirely good for democracy but said it is working to prevent interference in elections by outside actors—from Russia or others. “I wish I could guarantee that the positives are destined to outweigh the negatives, but I can’t,” said Samidh Chakrabarti, Facebook’s product manager for civic engagement, adding that the company has a “moral duty to understand how these technologies are being used and what can be done to make communities like Facebook as representative, civil, and trustworthy as possible.” Facebook has previously admitted that, in advance of the 2016 election, Russian agents created at least 80,000 posts with false or misleading information, which reached about 126 million people in just two years. Despite the company’s attempts to combat such interference, Chakrabarti said the “battle will never end.” He added, “Misinformation campaigns are not amateur operations. They are professionalized and constantly try to game the system. We will always have more work to do.”

*Megyn Kelly Slams ‘Hanoi Jane’ for Remarks:

Megyn Kelly escalated her feud with Jane Fonda, bringing up the actress’ “Hanoi Jane” controversy. Fonda, 80, recently spoke out about how “inappropriate” Kelly was to ask about the actress’ plastic surgery on an early episode of NBC’s Megyn Kelly Today. In response, Kelly used her Monday morning monologue to “address [Fonda’s] ‘poor me’ routine.” She played a montage of various times Fonda spoke openly about her plastic surgery—adding that she has “no regrets” about asking it herself—and then pivoted to say that Fonda’s “name is synonymous with outrage.” In an effort to call out the hypocrisy of her “moral indignation,” Kelly referred back to Fonda’s radio broadcast “shaming American troops,” and calling the torture of U.S. prisoners-of-war “understandable” during the Vietnam War.

*Pope Offers Rare Apology for Sex-Abuse Comments

Pope Francis on Sunday offered a rare apology after standing up for a Chilean bishop currently facing scrutiny for allegedly covering up the behavior of a pedophile. “I have to apologize,” he said, conceding he had “wounded many people who were abused.” He added, “It was a wound that I inflicted without meaning to. It pains me very much.” Despite this apology, the pope still contends that Juan Barros, who stands accused of protecting a pedophile, is innocent. The pope said last week, in a tone he now regrets: “The day I see proof against Bishop Barros, then I will talk. There is not a single piece of evidence against him. It is all slander. Is that clear?”

*LBN-INVESTIGATES: The Civil War was the bloodiest war ever fought on American soil. During an average day during the war, approximately 600 people were killed. By the end of the war, over 618,000 people had died. This is more Americans than WWI, WWII, the Korean War, and the Vietnam War combined.

*MYSTERY – ‘Suspicious’ Deaths of Canadian Billionaire and His Wife Stir Gossip

Police do not know how Canadian billionaire Barry Sherman and his wife, Honey, were killed, but the “suspicious” circumstances have raised questions in the days since their bodies were found hanging from the edge of their indoor pool in their Toronto home in December. There were no signs of forced entry into the lavish 12,000-square-foot home, authorities said. The Toronto Star initially reported that unidentified police sources believe the deaths were the result of a murder-suicide, but family members called such speculation “irresponsible.” In any case, the prominent family’s death in the quiet Toronto suburb has stirred gossip. “Nobody will support a theory of either murder-suicide or double suicide,” said family lawyer Brian Greenspan. “To everyone who knew them it’s inconceivable.” On Friday, the Star reported that private investigators hired by the family believe there is evidence the couple was murdered by multiple assailants.

*Laverne Cox is the First Trans Cosmo Covergirl

Laverne Cox is the first trans woman to ever grace the cover of Cosmopolitan. The actress, best known for her role in the Netflix series Orange Is the New Black, is featured on the February 2018 “Say Yes to Love” edition of Cosmopolitan South Africa. “Trans women deserve to be loved out in the open and in the light,” wrote Cox in a letter for the magazine. Editor in Chief Holly Meadows called Cox “the world’s most vocal trans poster girl.” The magazine issue decided to focus its Valentine’s issue on the LGBTQI+ community and “look at love in 2018—including acceptance of self, others, and non-binary relationships,” Meadows said.

*LBN-BUSINESS INSIDER:   ***Creating a new Bitcoin requires electricity. A lot of it. In the virtual currency world this creation process is called “mining.” There is no physical digging, since Bitcoins are purely digital. But the computer power needed to create each digital token consumes at least as much electricity as the average American household burns through in two years, according to figures from Morgan Stanley and Alex de Vries, an economist who tracks energy use in the industry. The total network of computers plugged into the Bitcoin network consumes as much energy each day as some medium-size countries — which country depends on whose estimates you believe. And the network supporting Ethereum, the second-most valuable virtual currency, gobbles up another country’s worth of electricity each day.

*LBN-MUSIC INSIDER:   ***Daryl Hall and John Oates and Train are teaming up for a summer tour of arenas around North America this summer. Each group will perform its own full-length set, with both Hall and Oates and Train teaming up for a finale.   ***Ed Sheeran has revealed he’ll quit music as soon as he has children. The 26-year-old singer, who announced on Saturday that he had become engaged to his long-term girlfriend Cherry Seaborn, admitted that he’ll be stopping in order to be a “good father.” The star, who previously said he wanted kids before he turns 30, told the Daily Star: “My ambition is going to go to zero as soon as I have kids.”   ***Michael Sigman, the former publisher of LA Weekly, and Wendy Block wrote an LA Times op-ed about losing their home in the Ventura wildfire last month. “Sharpest gut punch: The loss of the original sheet music for hundreds of songs written by my father, Carl Sigman, along with tons of other memorabilia that conjured the magic of Manhattan’s Brill Building, where my parents met 70 years ago.”

*LBN-COMMENTARY by Steven Soderbergh (Acclaimed film director): My fear is that, men being men, going forward, as opposed to changing their behavior, they’re just going to stop hiring women.

*LBN-COMMENTARY by Steven Rattner: Hardly a day goes by without President Trump tweet-bragging about the relentless rise of the stock market to fresh record highs — Exhibit A in his mind about how he is, indeed, making America great again. But, while strong equity markets are certainly a Good Thing, let’s not forget that, like so many effects of Mr. Trump’s policies, those higher share prices are propelled upward in considerable measure by the new president’s pro-business policies and benefit the wealthy far more than the average American. The unsurprising reality is that the rich are far more likely to hold stocks, and when they do, they own them in much larger chunks than their less-well-off brethren. The percentage of Americans who hold any stocks at all has declined to just over half of all Americans, while only 28 percent of families with below-median incomes hold any shares (including in retirement accounts). Moreover, while middle-class Americans typically own just $15,000 in equities, the top 10 percent have amassed median holdings of $365,000.

*LBN-HISTORICAL COMMENTARY by William Ellery Channing: Difficulties are meant to rouse, not discourage. The human spirit is to grow strong by conflict.


*LBN-OVERHEARD:   ***Hulk Hogan‘s son Nick was hospitalized over the weekend. Nick, 27, was sent to the emergency room after he passed out near the Hulk’s home in Clearwater, Fla., according to The Blast. The outlet reported that Nick “overdid it with work” and “didn’t eat enough that day” while training. Nick is out of the hospital already, with his dad, born Terry Gene Bollea, tweeting about the incident on Saturday.

LBN E-Lert Edited By Dan Gaylord

LBN – Sunday, January 21st, 2018

*Trump Blames Democrats for Shutdown, Uses It to Campaign for 2018

In his first public comments on the government shutdown,President Trump on Saturday placed the blame entirely on Democrats, who he says “could have easily made a deal.” “Democrats are far more concerned with Illegal Immigrants than they are with our great Military or Safety at our dangerous Southern Border,” he wrote on Twitter, accusing Democrats of playing “shutdown politics.” He also used the government shutdown as a campaign slogan for 2018 midterm elections. “WeNeedMoreRepublicansIn18 to power through mess!” he wrote. Democratic lawmakers, meanwhile, have said they were close to a deal with Trump but the president unexpectedly bailed on the plan at the last minute. Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer said Saturday he’d offered to discuss a U.S.-Mexico border wall in last-minute negotiations with Trump on Friday, but “even that was not enough to entice the president to finish the deal.” Ahead of a feared government shutdown last November, Trump reportedly told confidants he believed a shutdown would benefit him politically, saying he’d blame Democrats in order to bolster support from his base.

*Cops may bring dogs to search for bodies in ‘horror house’:

Investigators fear there may have been more siblings in the California horror house who didn’t make it out alive, and now they’re considering sending in corpse-sniffing dogs, according to a report. Police in Riverside County are in “serious discussions” to use the animals to comb the Perris, Calif., residence of David and Louise Turpin, where the couple’s 13 starving children were found in filthy conditions last week — some shackled to beds — to see if any unknown children died and were secretly buried there, according to Crime Watch Daily. The Turpin’s 17-year-old daughter escaped the house last Sunday and alerted officials that her parents had imprisoned her and her siblings, whose ages range 2-29. When officials rescued the kids, all but the baby showed severe signs of malnutrition, including stunted growth. Some of the children, all of whom were home-schooled by David, lacked even basic knowledge such as what a policeman is, officials said.

*US marches for women’s rights slam Trump, encourage voting:  

Demonstrators from Los Angeles to New York marched in support of female empowerment and denounced President Donald Trump’s views on immigration, abortion, LGBT rights and women’s rights on Saturday, the anniversary of his inauguration. People marched in Casper, Wyoming, and Cambridge, Massachusetts, and in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, and Houston. In Park City, Utah, where the annual Sundance Film Festival is in full swing, actress Jane Fonda and nationally known attorney Gloria Allred joined the women’s march. In Morristown, New Jersey, that state’s new first lady told a crowd she was a victim of sexual violence while attending college.

*UNDER ATTACK –  Kabul Hotel Siege Ends After 13 Hours

A 13-hour siege at Kabul’s International Hotel in the Afghan capital came to an end on Sunday morning. At least five people were killed in the attack, according to the interior ministry. The Taliban claim responsibility, while the government said the Taliban-aligned Haqqani network was to blame. Militants dressed in army uniforms stormed the hotel, causing dozens to evacuate before the building caught on fire.


*Trump urges GOP to use ‘Nuclear Option’ during government shutdown: 

President Trump on Sunday continued to blast Democrats over immigration during the showdown and urged Republicans to use the “Nuclear Option” to reach a long-term solution.“Great to see how hard Republicans are fighting for our Military and Safety at the Border. The Dems just want illegal immigrants to pour into our nation unchecked,” the president wrote on Twitter. “If stalemate continues, Republicans should go to 51% (Nuclear Option) and vote on real, long term budget, no C.R.’s!,” he posted. Democrats and Republicans have been at loggerheads since the Senate failed to pass a temporary spending bill – a C.R., or continuing resolution – that would have kept the government funded until Feb. 16.

*LBN-SEE IT:….A year after Trump’s Inauguration, some women found solidarity again in the streets for the Women’s March.

*Hawaii Governor Learned Missile Alert Was False Within Two Minutes:  

The leader of the Hawaii National Guard told state lawmakers on Friday that he informed the governor that a panic-inducing missile alert was a false alarm two minutes after it had been sent to cellphones statewide. The leader, Gen. Arthur J. Logan, made the revelation about the Jan. 13 episode at a hearing during which legislators raised concerns about why that critical information was not conveyed to the public more quickly. Amid the chaos and confusion, it took officials 38 minutes to send a second message saying the original message was an error. Officials have said a flaw in the alert system delayed the distribution of the correction. “The false alarm has identified so many gaps in the system,” Della Au Belatti, the majority leader of the Hawaii State House, said in a phone interview on Saturday. “We won’t see this kind of communications breakdown again.”

*ESCALATING –  Turkish Military Launches Ground Operation in Syria

Turkey’s military deployed ground troops into northern Syria on Sunday. The controversial move came after Turkish airstrikes targeted U.S.-backed Syrian Kurds in the Afrin region. Those strikes killed more than half a dozen people and wounded 13 others, the Syrian Democratic Forces General Command said. Turkey said it launched the operations as part of an effort to destroy “terrorist organizations” in the region, and said the military action was “within the right of self-defense and with respect to Syrian territorial integrity.” The YPG, the Kurdish militia group, said it had “no choice but to resist” and called on its members to “meet in the ranks of resistance.”

*LBN-BUSINESS INSIDER:   ***The first clue that there’s something unusual about Amazon’s store of the future hits you right at the front door. It feels as if you are entering a subway station. A row of gates guard the entrance to the store, known as Amazon Go, allowing in only people with the store’s smartphone app. Inside is an 1,800-square foot mini-market packed with shelves of food that you can find in a lot of other convenience stores — soda, potato chips, ketchup. It also has some food usually found at Whole Foods, the supermarket chain that Amazon owns. But the technology that is also inside, mostly tucked away out of sight, enables a shopping experience like no other. There are no cashiers or registers anywhere. Shoppers leave the store through those same gates, without pausing to pull out a credit card. Their Amazon account automatically gets charged for what they take out the door.   ***California lawmakers are targeting the expected windfall that companies in the state would see under the federal tax overhaul with a bill that would require businesses to turn over half to the state. A proposed Assembly Constitutional Amendment by Assemblymen Kevin McCarty, D-Sacramento, and Phil Ting, D-San Francisco, would create a tax surcharge on California companies making more than $1 million so that half of their federal tax cut would instead go to programs that benefit low-income and middle-class families.

*LBN-SPORTS INSIDER:   ***Fox Sports host Charissa Thompson’s private photos were hacked and leaked online. Thompson’s lawyer, Andrew Brettler, told Fox News his client will take “every appropriate step” to seek justice. “We’re working with [the Los Angeles District Attorney] hand-in-hand,” Brettler told Fox News. “I think that it’s important that the responsible individual or individuals are held accountable for this because it’s a disgusting invasion of my client’s privacy rights.”

*LBN-VIDEO LINK: New Rule: Distinction Deniers | Real Time with Bill Maher (HBO) —

*LBN-R.I.P.: Harry Selby, one of the last of Africa’s renowned white hunters, who took rich and famous safari clients into the interiors of Kenya, Tanganyika and Botswana for a half-century to shoot game, photograph exotic wildlife and search for elusive adventure in the bush, died on Saturday at his home in Maun, Botswana. He was 92. His death was confirmed by his friend Joe Coogan, an American writer and hunter who had worked on safaris with Mr. Selby. Mr. Coogan said he was notified in a message from Botswana by Mr. Selby’s daughter, Gail. No cause was given.

*LBN-VIDEO LINK: Are You a Millennial? –


World Health Organization

WHO exists to build a better, healthier future for people all over the world working through offices in more than 150 countries. Together they strive to combat diseases – infectious diseases like influenza and HIV and noncommunicable ones like cancer and heart disease. They help mothers and children survive and thrive so they can look forward to a healthy old age. They ensure the safety of the air people breathe, the food they eat, the water they drink – and the medicines and vaccines they need.

*LBN-VIDEO LINK:  Women are marching on Trump’s one-year anniversary in office   —

*LBN-COMMENTARY by Susan Gubar: At diagnosis, quite a few cancer patients spy Eros rushing out the door. I know I did. For some, eroticism vanishes during or after treatment. Anhedonia, the inability to feel pleasure, can afflict both men and women with cancer. We often get more help from one another than from the medical specialists who are beginning to address this challenge. It can be difficult to experience desire if you don’t love but fear your body or if you cannot recognize it as your own. Surgical scars, lost body parts and hair, chemically induced fatigue, radiological burns, nausea, hormone-blocking medications, numbness from neuropathies, weight gain or loss, and anxiety hardly function as aphrodisiacs. At 46, the youngest member of my cancer support group put it best: “an existential crisis is not sexy.” Although her physicians offered no advice, she eventually attempted to foster a renewed sex life, if only for the caring partner who saw her through treatment. “Sex and Cancer,” a new book by Dr. Saketh R. Guntupalli, a gynecologic cancer specialist, and Maryann Karinch, sets out to help women with gynecologic or breast cancer. Dr. Guntupalli and Ms. Karinch labor mightily to provide scientific evidence for an insight some might consider predictable: “We found that sex was less pleasurable for women after cancer and that all types of sexual activity — oral, vaginal and anal — decreased after cancer.” In patches of ponderous prose, their book describes the ways in which treatment inhibits romance.

*LBN-COMMENTARY by Alan Burdick: Many people may be wondering whether the remaining three years of Mr. Trump’s current term of office can be made to speed up. This isn’t physically possible, of course, but it might be psychologically achievable. Remember that time flies when — and because — you aren’t paying attention to it. So attend elsewhere: Put away your calendar; stop counting down the days; fully engage the work in front of you, be it political or not. With luck you’ll be able to look back in amazement at how fast it all went by.


*LBN-OVERHEARD:   ***She’s not entirely free yet, but former “Dance Moms” host Abby Lee Miller will be walking out of jail next month after having served less than half of her sentence for fraud. The often explosive reality TV host will leave a federal prison in California on February 20 and segue to a halfway house, Deadline has learned. It is unclear how long Miller will spend at the Van Nuys facility after her release, according to an individual with knowledge of the situation.

LBN E-Lert Edited By Dan Gaylord

LBN – Friday, January 19th, 2018

*GUSHER –  U.S. Oil Output Expected to Outstrip Saudi Arabia

U.S. crude oil production is this year set to exceed the output of Saudi Arabia for the first time in the modern era, according to the International Energy Agency. The Wall Street Journal reports that U.S. production is also expected to hit more than 10 million barrels per day for the first time since 1970. “This year promises to be a record-setting one for the U.S.,” the agency said, noting that in 2017, the American shale industry “beat all expectations” thanks to “cost cuts, stepped up drilling activity, and efficiency measures enforced during the downturn.” In 2017, Russia produced approximately 11 million barrels per day.

*The Dow’s 31% gain during Trump’s first year is the best since FDR:

Donald Trump lifted the Dow Jones industrial average in his first year in office more than any other president since Franklin Roosevelt. The Dow has surged more than 31 percent since Trump’s inauguration on Jan. 20, 2017. That marks the index’s best performance during a president’s first year since Roosevelt. The Dow skyrocketed 96.5 percent during Roosevelt’s first year in office.

*STONE COLD – Shirtless Vladimir Putin Takes a Plunge in Freezing Waters

Vladimir Putin took part in a Russian tradition marking the Orthodox Epiphany, which required the Russian president to plunge into icy waters— bare-chested, of course. During the ceremony at a lake outside Moscow, the temperature hovered at 23 degrees Fahrenheit and the Russian president was surrounded by Orthodox priests and “glittering religious icons.” The president stripped down to his swimming trunks and stepped into a hole cut into the lake’s ice. When a journalist asked Putin if it was cold, he responded, “No, it’s great.” The ceremony marked the first time that Putin took part in the ritual publicly, but his spokesperson noted that he had been “plunging into an ice hole for a number of years now.” The event usually takes place on Jan. 18th and 19th across Russia, and last year two million people plunged into frigid waters.

*57.9% of Illegals Caught at U.S.-Mexico Border in FY17 Not Mexican; From 111 Other Countries

Only 42.1 percent of the “deportable aliens” that the U.S. Border Patrol apprehended along the U.S.-Mexico border in fiscal 2017 were citizens of Mexico, according to data collected by U.S. Customs and Border Protection. A significant majority—57.9 percent—came from 111 other countries. In fact, during fiscal year 2017, the Border Patrol apprehended deportable aliens along the U.S.-Mexico border who came from 84 countries that are not in the Americas. In fiscal 2017, according to a U.S. Customs and Border Protection spreadsheet, the Border Patrol apprehended a total of 310,531 “deportable aliens” in all 20 Border Patrol sectors. (These include nine sectors along the Southwest Border with Mexico, eight along the Northern Border with Canada, and three along the nation’s Coastal Border.) Of the total 310,531 “deportable aliens” the Border Patrol apprehended, 303,916 (or about 97.9 percent) were apprehended in the nine sectors along the Southwest Border with Mexico.

*Joel McHale to Launch Weekly Late-Night-Style Show on Netflix

Joel McHale announced on Friday morning that he will be returning to his roots next month with a new weekly half-hour topical series on Netflix. According to a Netflix press release,The Joel McHale Show with Joel McHale will feature “celebrity guests, comedy sketches, and insane video clips from the worldwide realms of TV, sports, politics, celebrity culture, and every corner of the internet.” The green screen that features prominently in the show’s first teaser is a nod to The Soup, the pop culture commentary show that the former Community star hosted for more than 11 years on E!. Writer/director Paul Feig (Bridesmaids, Ghostbusters) will executive produce the series, which is scheduled to premiere on Sunday, February 18th, exactly four months after Chelsea Handler announced her weekly Netflix talk show would be ending.

*LBN-INVESTIGATES: The spring months of March, April, and May have consistently shown to have the highest suicide rate, 4-6% higher than the average for the rest of the year. Christmas season is actually below average. Some studies suggest greater seasonality in suicides in rural rather than urban areas.

*LBN-SEE IT:…A proposal to charge drivers in the busiest parts of Manhattan is designed to unsnarl city streets. Midtown traffic now crawls at an average of 4.7 miles per hour.

*Baltimore Fires Another Police Commissioner, After Record High Murder Rate: 

The mayor of Baltimore abruptly announced on Friday that she had relieved the city’s police commissioner of duty after a year of unprecedented violence in the city. Mayor Catherine Pugh said that Darryl De Sousa, a 30-year veteran of the department who was most recently a deputy police commissioner, would replace Kevin Davis, who became commissioner in 2015. Mr. De Sousa will be Baltimore’s ninth police commissioner since 1994. Baltimore experienced a record murder rate last year and had by far the highest rate of the largest 30 cities in the United States. There have been more than 300 homicides in the city in each of the past three years, including 343 recorded in 2017. By comparison, New York, which has a population more than 10 times that of Baltimore, experienced only 286 murders last year.

*DID YOU KNOW? Did you know that LBN is read daily in 26 foreign countries daily?

*LBN-BUSINESS INSIDER:   ***The executive in charge of Facebook’s efforts to court China has left the company, a fresh setback for the social network as it seeks to get its products into China’s huge internet market. Wang-Li Moser, who as Facebook’s lead liaison with Beijing had become a symbol of its ambitions in the country, resigned in December, according to two people familiar with the matter. Ms. Moser had been brought in from Intel to professionalize Facebook’s efforts to court China’s government. Her job was a tough one. She set up and presided over negotiations between China’s most powerful officials and a social network that many of them believed could be dangerously destabilizing.

*LBN-NOTICED:   ***Brooke Shields at Il Gattopardo in NYC.   ***Super-CPA Phil Libertore and his wife Dana up from Orange Country last night to have dinner at a packed Baltaire restaurant in Brentwood.   ***Paul McCartney at Ristorante Morini in NYC.

*LBN-MUSIC INSIDER:   ***The Eagles have settled a lawsuit filed last year to prevent a Mexican hotel from calling itself Hotel California. The hoteliers, Hotel California Baja LLC, withdrew their application for a U.S. trademark, according to Reuters. The decision to dismiss the suit was mutual. The band had sued the company, which operates the Todos Santos hotel in Baja California Sur, with the U.S. District Court in Los Angeles, but both parties agreed to call it off Wednesday. The news services said that the decision coincided the same day that the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office accepted the company’s request to abandon its application.   ***Dolly Parton, the winner of countless awards over a career that spans decades, can now boast an accolade that precious few can. She currently holds two Guinness World Records for her chart-topping music. On Wednesday, the country music star was awarded the world record for “Most decades with a Top 20 hit on the US Hot Country Songs chart” as well as “Most hits on the US Hot Country Songs chart by a female artist.”

*LBN-VIDEO LINK:  President Ronald Reagan “Tear Down This Wall” Speech at Berlin Wall —


Janis Joplin (1943)

Joplin began singing folk rock in Texas bars after running away from home at the age of 17. In 1966, she moved to San Francisco and became lead vocalist of the rock band Big Brother and the Holding Company. The band catapulted Joplin to stardom. By the late 1960s, she was almost as well known for her unconventional lifestyle as for her gritty, memorable vocals. Before her death from a heroin overdose at 27, she released hit albums with two other bands beside Big Brother.

*LBN-VIDEO LINK: And they’re out: When TV guests walk off the set —



Simply put, Divianart is the world’s largest art gallery in your hand. DeviantArt is the largest online social community for artists and art enthusiasts, allowing people to connect through the creation and sharing of art. They entertain, inspire, and empower the artist in all of us.

*LBN-R.I.P.:   ***Stansfield Turner, who led the Central Intelligence Agency through four tumultuous years underPresident Jimmy Carter, starting small covert actions against international communism that grew into some of the biggest battles of the Cold War, died on Thursday at his home in Redmond, Wash. He was 94. Mr. Turner’s longtime administrative assistant, Pat Moynihan, confirmed the death.   ***Peter Mayle, an Englishman who started a writing career in his 30’s with sex-education books for children before making a spectacularly successful switch to the travel memoir genre with “A Year in Provence,” his 1989 best seller about relocating to Southern France, died on Thursday at a hospital near his home there. He was 78.   ***William W. Bain Jr., who founded the business consulting firm Bain & Company and was an early mentor to Mitt Romney, died on Tuesday at his home in Naples, Fla. He was 80. His wife, Ann Dean Bain, said the cause was complications of Alzheimer’s disease.

*LBN-COMMENTARY by David Brooks: In 1945, the Austrian physician René Spitz investigated an orphanage that took extra care to make sure its infants were not infected with disease. The children received first-class nutrition and medical care, but they were barely touched, to minimize their contact with germs. The approach was a catastrophe. Thirty-seven percent of the babies died before reaching age 2. It turns out that empathetic physical contact is essential for life. Intimate touch engages the emotions and wires the fibers of the brain together. The power of this kind of loving touch is long lasting. The famous Grant Study investigated a set of men who had gone to Harvard in the 1940s. The men who grew up in loving homes earned 50 percent more over the course of their careers than those from loveless ones. They suffered from far less chronic illness and much lower rates of dementia in old age. A loving home was the best predictor of life outcomes. If the power of loving touch is astounding, the power of invasive touch is horrific. Christie Kim of N.Y.U. surveyed the research literature on victims of child sexual abuse. The victims experience higher levels of anxiety throughout their lifetimes. They report higher levels of depression across the decades and higher levels of self-blame. They are more than twice as likely to experience sexual victimization again.


*LBN-OVERHEARD:   ***The Situation is ready for his day in court. The former “Jersey Shore” star, born Michael Sorrentino, arrived at US District Court in Newark on Friday around 11 a.m. and was expected to plead guilty to tax evasion charges. He agreed to a deal earlier this week after initially scoffing at the offer. The Situation, 35, and his brother Marc were charged with conspiracy to commit fraud in 2014 after the government claimed they did not pay all of the federal income tax owed on The Situation’s $8.9 million income from 2010 to 2012.

LBN E-Lert Edited By Dan Gaylord