LBN- Special Report- Thursday

SICK! Feds: 21 Million Have Substance Use Disorder

Almost 21 million individuals in the U.S. have substance use disorder, the surgeon general said on Thursday. A wide-rangingreport—the first of its kind to be commissioned at the federal government level—found that 50,000 people died from an opioid, alcohol or other drug overdose in 2014. Surgeon General Vivek Murthy wrote in the report that nurses in his previous hospital asked him to “do something about the addiction crisis” in the U.S. “I recognize there is no single solution. We need more policies and programs that increase access to proven treatment modalities,” Murthy wrote. “We need to invest more in expanding the scientific evidence base for prevention, treatment, and recovery.” He also called for a “cultural shift in how we think about addiction,” namely not evaluating addiction as a “moral failing.”

Director of National Intelligence James Clapper Resigns

Director of National Intelligence James Clapper submitted his resignation on Wednesday night, he said at a congressional hearing on Thursday morning. “I submitted my letter of resignation last night, which felt pretty good,” Clapper told the House Select Committee on Intelligence. “I have 64 days left and I’d have a pretty hard time with my wife going past that.” The resignation was not unexpected, as it is “required by all appointed administration officials.” President-elect Donald Trump has been working in recent days to fill thousands of positions for when he takes office in January. Clapper has served for more than 50 years in the U.S. government, beginning with two combat tours in Vietnam.

China: Climate Change Isn’t a Chinese Hoax

Dismissing the claim made in the now-infamous tweet by President-elect Donald Trump, China says it didn’t fabricate the concept of climate change—and pointed to two Republican icons as its evidence. Chinese Vice Foreign Minister Liu Zhenmin said in Morocco on Wednesday that Ronald Reaganand George H.W. Bush started the global-warming conversation in the late 1980s and that the concept is not a “hoax” perpetuated by the Chinese government. The initial panel on climate change began as a joint project between the UN Environmental Program and the World Meteorological Organization during Reagan’s presidency. Since that time, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change—which won the Nobel Peace Prize in 2007—has published five reports, using findings from global climate experts, to create a “full scientific and technical assessment of climate change.” Liu said, “If you look at the history of climate-change negotiations, actually it was initiated by the IPCC with the support of the Republicans during the Reagan and senior Bush administration during the late 1980s.” Trump has not yet replied—on Twitter or otherwise—to Liu’s statement. Trump’s original tweet has garnered more than 104,000 retweets in four years.

LBN-INVESTIGATES There are about 9,000 taste buds on the surface of the tongue, in the throat, and on the roof of the mouth.

Jesse Jackson: Obama should pardon Hillary Clinton

Speaking at President Gerald Ford‘s alma mater, The Rev.Jesse Jackson called for President Obama to issue a blanket pardon to Hillary Clinton before he leaves office, just like Ford did for Richard Nixon. Stopping short of saying Clinton did anything wrong, Jackson told a large crowd of University of Michigan students, faculty and administrators gathered at daylong celebration of his career that Obama should short-circuit President-elect Donald Trump’s promised attempt to prosecute Hillary Clinton for use of a private e-mail server.”It would be a monumental moral mistake to pursue the indictment of Hillary Clinton,” Jackson said. He said issuing the pardon could help heal the nation, like Ford’s pardon of Nixon did.

LeBron James to Give $2.5M to Muhammad Ali Exhibit

LeBron James is donating $2.5 million to a new exhibit honoring the life of boxing giant Muhammad Ali at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History and Culture. “Muhammad Ali is such a cornerstone of me as an athlete because of what he represented not only in the ring as a champion but more outside the ring—what he stood for, what he spoke for, his demeanor,” the Cleveland Cavaliers superstar said in an interview. “I think of him every day. Without his passion and goals and morals, I don’t know if I’d be sitting here today talking to you about it.”

Divorce in U.S. Plunges to 35-Year Low

The U.S. divorce rate has fallen for the third consecutive year, to its lowest level in more than 35 years, according to data released Thursday.Meanwhile, marriage is up a bit, at 32.3 marriages for every 1,000 unmarried women age 15 or older last year, from 31.9 in 2014. It was the highest since 2009, suggesting that, after a plunge of several decades, matrimony could be stabilizing. “The decline has stopped,” said Wendy Manning, co-director of the National Center for Family & Marriage Research at Bowling Green State University.

*LBN-MUSIC INSIDER:   ***The Nobel Prize in Literature may be the world’s most important literary award, but not everyone who wins can make it to the ceremony. Among the reasons given by past laureates for failing to travel to Stockholm to accept the award: being gravely ill and in a wheelchair (Harold Pinter, 2005); being so anxious and agoraphobic that you are “not suited as a person to be dragged into public” (Elfriede Jelinek, 2004); and being a Soviet dissident terrified to leave the country because you might not be allowed back in (Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, 1970). Bob Dylan’s excuse? “Pre-existing commitments.”   ***When Leonard Cohen’s family announced last week that he had died at 82, it gave no cause. Although the poet and songwriter had been open about his failing health in recent months, fans knew little other than what The New Yorker reported in its weekly radio show, that Mr. Cohen had been battling cancer. On Wednesday, however, Mr. Cohen’s manager, Robert B. Kory, offered more detail about his client’s death. “Leonard Cohen died during his sleep following a fall in the middle of the night on Nov. 7,” Mr. Kory said in a statement. “The death was sudden, unexpected and peaceful.”

*‘Very sick’ Shelley Duvall surfaces for alarming interview: 

Actress Shelley Duvall made a startling confession about her battle with mental illness in an upcoming interview with “Dr. Phil,” airing Friday. In the newly released clip, the “Shining” star appears unrecognizable as she and Dr. Phil McGraw discuss her deceased “Popeye” co-star, Robin Williams, who she believes is still alive. “I loved Robin Williams. I don’t think he’s dead,” the 67-year-old told Dr. Phil, who then asked if she’s seen the fallen star, who committed suicide in 2014. “Have, yes,” she replied, claiming Williams had become a shape-shifter.


U.S. Rep. Conyer’s Son Missing in Texas

Local police are searching door-to-door for the son of U.S. Rep. John Conyers. Carl Conyers, 21, was last seen at his apartment at the University of Houston on Tuesday, according to reports. It’s not clear what led to his disappearance, but he allegedly shaved his beard shortly before going missing. His father, an 87-year-old Democrat, is the longest-serving member of the U.S. House of Representatives. He was first elected in 1964.

*LBN-BUSINESS INSIDER:    ***Federal prosecutors in New York announced on Thursday that they had arrested a former Valeant executive and the former chief executive of the mail-order pharmacy Philidor in what the prosecutors described as a multimillion dollar fraud and kickback scheme aimed at personally enriching both executives. According to the federal complaint, the former Valeant executive, Gary Tanner, entered into a secret relationship with Philidor’s chief executive,Andrew Davenport. Under the arrangement, Mr. Tanner was secretly paid millions of dollars to promote the pharmacy’s interests inside Valeant, including persuading Valeant to buy an option to acquire Philidor, then a little-known mail-order pharmacy based in Hatboro, Penn. ***JPMorgan pays $264 million to settle charges of a “systematic bribery scheme” aimed at winning business in China. Federal prosecutors and regulators say the bank gave jobs and internships to “unqualified” children of Chinese government officials. The settlement ends a three-year investigation into JPMorgan and marks one of the first major crackdowns on a big U.S. bank for running afoul of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act. Known as the FCPA, the law prohibits companies from making payments or giving “anything of value” to win business from foreign officials.

*LBN-SPOTLIGHT: “Life is about making an impact, not making an income.” —–

*MY REVIEW: “I don’t need bull-shit in my life, which is why I read LBN daily.”——Lindsay R., an LBN reader from Montreal, Canada.

*LBN-R.I.P.:   ***Melvin R. Laird, who as President Richard M. Nixon’s first secretary of defense quietly challenged the administration’s hawkish military policies during the war in Vietnam, prompting deep suspicion — and even spying — between the White House and the Pentagon, died on Wednesday in Fort Myers, Fla. He was 94. His son David said the cause was complications of respiratory failure. Mr. Laird lived in Fort Myers and died in a hospital there.   ***Howard Ruff, an idiosyncratic economist, best-selling author and political conservative best known for being bullish on gold and silver and gloomy about the economy, died on Saturday in Lehi, Utah. He was 85. The cause was complications of Parkinson’s disease, his assistant, Joann Allen, said.

*LBN-COMMENTARY by Linda Deutsch: In this strange season of sorrow, my heart has been broken again at the news that my dear friend of four decades, attorney Anthony Brooklier, has died. Tony was a brilliant lawyer and a gentle soul whose dedication to his clients was impressive. You will read in obituaries that he was the son of a mob boss, which is true. But he had long ago overcome that stigma with the integrity of hiswork. I met Tony in the 1970s when he was defending his father on federal charges. It was his first case and he suffered when he lost it. But he went on to build a respected defense practice and he continued to work on cases until his death today. He and his Emmy winning wife, TV newswoman Pat LaLama, were like family to me in recent years. Tony and I bonded over a mutual devotion to Elvis Presley and his music. When I retired from The Associated Press last year, Tony entertained at my “roast,” bringing a guitarist and singing a song he had penned for me to the tune of “Heartbreak Hotel.”  His own heart broke last year when his 41-year-old son committed suicide. He never got over it…. Rest in peace, my dear friend.

*LBN-COMMENTARY by Jeffrey Katzenberg: The Founding Fathers provided tools to combat the demagogues they knew might come along. We merely need to steadfastly takeadvantage of these tools, by making our 61 million-plus voices forcefully heard in the Congress, in the Senate, in the courts and peacefully on the streets. And no one should be more motivated to utilize these tools than we who work in the creative industries that stretch from Hollywood to Silicon Valley and beyond. Ours is a community that prizes openness, respect and tolerance. The basis of our industries is freedom of expression. We must make clear to President-elect Trump that it is vitally important he support these values. So, one week later, I remain disappointed and concerned. But I have jettisoned despair. We must not let one candidate make us forget how many we are and the power we have. We’ve had a week to accept and adjust. Let’s all get back in the game.


*LBN-OVERHEARD:   ***Neurotic funnyman Richard Lewis is parting ways with his longtime residence, a Mediterranean-style villa in Los Angeles, for $1.56 million. Nestled in the Hollywood Hills, the 2,508-square-foot home is chic and cozy with two bedrooms and two full bathrooms. Built in 1926, the home has been in Lewis’ property portfolio for over 30 years. It previously belonged to actor Eddie Albert, who starred in the TV show“Green Acres.”   ***Ricky Martin is off the market. The Latin heartthrob is engaged to his boyfriend of one year, Jwan Yosef, he revealed on Wednesday’s episode of “The Ellen DeGeneres Show.” “He’s a conceptual artist and I’m a collector,” Martin gushed about his fiancé. “I started looking for art and I saw his art and I went crazy because I really love what he does. Really original. And then I contacted him.”   ***Charlie Sheen’s ex Brooke Mueller is dating skin-care guru Peter Thomas Roth, who has separated from his wife and business partner, Noreen, after 20 years of marriage. Mueller and Roth, who founded his clinical skin-care company in 1993, have been dating since the summer, after he split with Noreen, who is the managing director of his company.

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