LBN – Friday, April 20, 2018

*Lance Armstrong Agrees to Pay $5 Million to Settle Federal Lawsuit

Cyclist Lance Armstrong agreed to pay $5 million to the federal government on Thursday to settle a lawsuit claiming that he defrauded the U.S. Postal Service by using “performance-enhancing drugs” when the agency sponsored his cycling team, Elliot Peters, Armstrong’s lead lawyer, toldThe New York Times. The government originally sought $100 million from Armstrong. The agreement comes after years of arm-twisting on both sides, with Armstrong’s side denying that the Postal Service was harmed and Peters calling it “a bogus case.” Armstrong admitted to doping in 2013, saying he had used banned substances during his record-breaking sevenTour de France wins. He was stripped of all his titles following a 2012 investigation by the U.S. Anti-Doping AgencyFloyd Landis, a former teammate of Armstrong’s, was the original plaintiff in the case. He is set to receive $1.1 million from the settlement money, and Armstrong will have to pay him an additional $1.65 million to cover his legal costs.

*US: Syria, Russia Trying to ‘Sanitize’ Chemical-Attack Site

The State Department said Thursday that the U.S. has “credible information” that Russia and Syria are attempting to “sanitize” the site of the suspected chemical-weapons attack in Douma, Syria, earlier this month, according to Reuters. “We have credible information that indicates that Russian officials are working with the Syrian regime to deny and to delay these inspectors from gaining access to Douma,” State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert said in a briefing. “Russian officials have worked with the Syrian regime to sanitize the locations of the suspected attacks and remove incriminating evidence of chemical weapons use.” This comes after a UN reconnaissance team reportedly came under fire this week while visiting suspected chemical-attack sites.

*Russia: Trump Tells Putin He’d Be ‘Glad to See Him in White House’

Russia has claimed that Donald Trump extended a warm invitation to Vladimir Putin to visit him at the White House, and offered to visit Russia after the Russian leader’s U.S. trip. According to Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, Trump said: “We proceed from the fact that the U.S. president in a telephone conversation… made such an invitation, said he would be glad to see [Putin] in the White House, would then be glad to meet on a reciprocal visit.” The news of the invitation comes the morning after as former FBI Director James Comey’s memo release offered some weird new details about conversations between Trump and Putin. In his notes on his meetings with Trump in the first months of his presidency, Comey wrote that Trump dismissed allegations that he paid Russian prostitutes to pee on a bed once slept in by the Obamas in a Moscow hotel, but told Comey that Putin spoke of his pride in Russia’s prostitutes. “The president said ‘the hookers thing’ is nonsense,” Comey writes, noting that Trump then brought up the conversation with Putin about Russia having the “some of the most beautiful hookers in the world.”

*FDA Panel Backs Cannabis-Based Drug to Treat Childhood Seizures

A 13-member FDA panel voted “unanimously in favor” of an experimental medication with a cannabis chemical to treat “severe seizures in children with epilepsy” on Thursday, according to the Associated PressEpidiolex, a syrup formulated by GW Pharmaceuticals, is essentially a “pharmaceutical-grade” CBD oil—which does not have the “mind-altering” effects that THC does. If the FDA follows the group’s recommendation to approve the drug, it would be the “first drug derived from the cannabis plant” to get the agency’s approval in the U.S. Some patients involved in the drug’s trials had dozens of seizures a day—and said it dramatically reduced the number of seizures they experienced, allowing them to live a normal life. The panel backed the trial up with three studies that show how the drug has helped with “two rare forms of childhood epilepsy.” It’s not clear why the substance reduces seizures.

*Wells Fargo to Pay $1 Billion to Settle Claims of Mortgage, Auto-Loan Abuses

Wells Fargo agreed to pay $1 billion to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and Office of the Comptroller of the Currency to settle allegations that the bank made “improper charges to consumers in its mortgage and auto-lending businesses,” according to The Wall Street Journal. The bank is suspected of “charging improper fees” in its mortgage-lending business and “selling unwanted insurance products” to customers with auto loans. The bank also agreed to “offer restitution” to customers as part of the settlement. This is the largest bank penalty in the Trump administration thus far. Wells Fargo was also caught and punished for opening dummy accounts without customers’ consent earlier this year.

*WHO READS LBN?  Acclaimed Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon, Dr. Jon Perlman, along with influencers in all 50 of the United States and 26 foreign countries.

*Justice Department Sending Comey Memos to Congress

The Department of Justice is expected to share the so-called “Comey memos” with Congress as early as today or tomorrow,The Daily Beast confirmed Thursday. The memos, which were written by fired FBI chief James Comey to keep records of his conversations with President Trump early last year, has become a source of contention between House Republicans and the Department of Justice. On Wednesday, three GOP House chairmen—Judiciary Chairman Bob Goodlatte, Oversight Chairman Trey Gowdy, and Intelligence ChairmanDevin Nunes—suggested they would subpoena the Justice Department to obtain the memos as part of their probe of the FBI’s 2016 investigation of Hillary Clinton’s emails.


•  In Japanese, the name “Japan” is Nihon or Nippon, which means “Land of the Rising Sun.” It was once believed that Japan was the first country to see the sun rise in the East in the morning.
•  Japan has the third longest life expectancy in the world with men living to 81 years old and women living to almost 88 years old. The Japanese live on average four years longer than Americans.
•  Japan consists of over 6,800 islands.
•  Home to 33 million people, the Tokyo-Yokohama metropolitan area is the largest populated metropolitan region in the world.
•  Japan has more than 3,000 McDonald’s restaurants, the largest number in any country outside the U.S.

*WHY I LOVE LBN: “I adore the photos in LBN each day. They inspire me. Here is my selfie for your collection.” —– Daisy B., Lansing, Michigan

BONDED IN TRAGEDY: Columbine and Parkland Students Rally Together on 19th Anniversary

Survivors of the Parkland and Columbine school shootings joined together to campaign for stricter gun laws on the eve of the 19th anniversary of the massacre at Columbine High School that left 13 people dead. Parkland students, along with Columbine survivors, victims’ families, current students and members of the surrounding community in Littleton, Colorado, gathered Thursday night in a park near the school. Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School junior Kayla Schaefer, one of 60 Parkland students who made the trip to Colorado for the tragic anniversary, told CNN: “I feel like we’re both kind of going through the same thing. They went through it a long time ago, but we’re going through it now—so they understand what we are going through.” Students from 2,500 schools are planning a walkout Friday morning to commemorate Columbine and to demand stricter gun controls, though Columbine classes are canceled every year on the anniversary of the shooting and students are urged to take part in community service.

*LBN ANNOUNCES: 1952 Mickey Mantle Rookie Card Sells for $2.88M

A 1952 Mickey Mantle rookie-year baseball card sold for $2.88 million Thursday evening, the second most expensive ever sold at auction, ESPN reports. The Topps card was graded a 9 out of 10 by Professional Sports Authenticator, and cards in similar condition were valued at $240,000 just 11 years ago. The Mantle Topps card is extraordinarily valuable due to its rarity: Few bought the cards at the time, as they were being sold too late in the baseball season. Sy Berger, a Topps “card pioneer,” is said to have started selling them for a penny a piece, then 10 for a penny, and eventually dumped more than 300 cases of the 1952 decks into the ocean to get rid of them. The record price for a baseball card at auction remains $3.12 million for a 1909 T206 Honus Wagner card sold in October 2016.

*LBN- FACT OF THE DAY: India is the birthplace of chess. The original word for “chess” is the Sanskrit chaturanga, meaning “four members of an army”-which were mostly likely elephants, horses, chariots, and foot soldiers.

*LBN- FOOD FOR THOUGHT: Raw foodism is a lifestyle involving the consumption of uncooked, unprocessed, and often organic foods as a large percentage or the entirety of one’s diet. Raw foodists vary in the extent to which they eat raw foods like fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, eggs, fish, meat, and even unpasteurized dairy products, such as milk, cheese, and yogurt. Proponents claim that raw foods encourage weight loss, promote digestion, and prevent illness and toxicity.

*SHAKE THINGS UP – READ LBN: Now you can share LBN with your friends, family, and associates (if they’ve got the guts) by telling them to go to

*LBN-MUSIC INSIDER:   ***Sade is releasing her first new music since the 2010 album “Soldier of Love.” The icon is contributing an original song to Ava DuVernay’s “A Wrinkle in Time.”


Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum

Test your knowledge! Can you identify geographic features viewed from space? Each year, in honor of Geography Awareness Week, the National Air and Space Museum hosts the Geography From Space quiz.


THE CREATION OF A BEST-SELLING BOOK –  “Without Notes” with Dr. Srini Pillay – Episode 3: Unlocking Power of the Unfocused Mind —


*LBN-OVERHEARD:    ***Taylor Swift had a real life version of Goldilocks play out in one of her homes, as an intruder got way too comfortable after breaking into the place. Law enforcement sources tell TMZ … Roger Alvarado allegedly climbed up a ladder, smashed a window with his hand and got into the NYC brownstone early Friday. Once he got in, he took a shower and fell asleep in a bed.   ***Khloe Kardashian andTristan Thompson‘s relationship is in shambles … despite an appearance Khloe created that her union is still tight. Sources familiar with the situation tell TMZ that Khloe has not spoken to Tristan for several days because she’s still furious after finding out he repeatedly cheated on her, and embarrassed her in the process.   ***Fentanyl wasn’t the only drug found in Prince‘s stash of counterfeit Vicodin pills — in fact, they were laced with so many drugs … there’s no way he could have known exactly what he was taking when he popped one. According to law enforcement, hundreds of the fake pills stamped “Watson 853” — a brand of Vicodin — were found around Paisley Park in several different non-prescription bottles. The pills were in over-the-counter bottles, such as Bayer, Aleve, and Target brand Vitamin C instead.   ***Tom Brady shot down retirement rumors and insisted he would play football in 2018 when talking with his buddy Jim Gray … but there’s a catch. Tom and Jim have been friends for years — Tom does his radio show every week during the NFL season … so when we spotted Jim atLAX, we had to ask about the great “Will Tom retire?” debate. That’s when Jim reminded us what Brady told him right before the Super Bowl in February. “I asked him a question on the air … I said, ‘Regardless of the outcome are you going to return and play football next year?’ And he said, ‘You WILL see me playing football in 2018.'”

LBN E-Lert Edited By Renee Preston