LBN – Special Report – Thursday April 6, 2017


President Donald Trump has told some members of Congress that he is considering military action in Syria in retaliation for this week’s chemical attack there, and recognizes the seriousness of the situation, a source familiar with the calls tells CNN. The source said the President had not firmly decided to go ahead with it but said he was discussing possible actions with Defense Secretary James Mattis. Trump is relying on the judgment of Mattis, according to the source. US officials tell CNN the Pentagon has longstanding options to strike Syria’s chemical weapons capability and has presented those options to the administration.

 Democrats Successfully Filibuster Gorsuch Nomination

Senate Democrats successfully filibustered the nomination ofNeil Gorsuch to serve on the Supreme Court, garnering the 41 votes to vote against cloture, or the ending of debate on the nomination. The vote ended with 55 votes in favor of ending debate, and 45 against. Current Senate rules state that 60 votes are required in order to advance a Supreme Court nomination. The move almost certainly means Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell will trigger the so-called “nuclear option,” which will change the rules to allow the nomination to go to a final floor vote with a simple majority of 51 votes, rather than 60.

Russia Bans Image of Putin in Drag

An image of Vladimir Putin wearing makeup has been banned in Russia, adding to a list of forbidden “extremist” materials that already numbered over 4,000. No. 4,071 now contends that a poster depicting Putin with painted lips and eyes illegally implies “the supposed nonstandard sexual orientation of the president of the Russian Federation.” Putin has been commonly photoshopped into drag in images since 2013, when Russia passed a law banning gay “propaganda.” The Moscow Times reports the new ban may be related to a May 2016 verdict that came after a man called AV Tsvetkov circulated the photoshopped picture with others—including ones that showed Putin and Russian Prime Minister Dmitri Medvedev in Nazi uniforms. Online, images of Putin in drag are being shared to spite the ban, often gleefully.
LBN-INVESTIGATES: Zorba, an English mastiff, is the biggest dog ever recorded. He weighed 343 pounds and measured 8′ 3″ from his nose to his tail.

GOP Rep. Mike Conaway to Take Over Russia Probe

Texas Congressman Mike Conaway will take over the House Intelligence Committee’s investigation into Russia’s meddling in the 2016 presidential election, after Rep. Devin Nunes (R-CA) stepped aside amid a new ethics probe. The House Ethics Committee is looking into whether Nunes spilled classified information when he revealed that there was “incidental” surveillance of Trump transition-team members. House Speaker Paul Ryan said Thursday that he doesn’t believe Nunes did anything wrong, but in the meantime Conaway will spearhead the Russia probe so as to not create a “distraction.” Conaway, the chairman of the House Agriculture Committee and a member of the intelligence panel, was first elected to Congress in 2004.

WHOOPS — Report: VP Secret Service Agent Met With Prostitute

According to a report on CNN, multiple law-enforcement officials said a Secret Service agent on Vice President Mike Pence’s detail has been suspended after meeting a prostitute at a hotel in Maryland. Police reportedly responded to a call from the hotel manager, who was suspicious of activity in one of the rooms. The agent reportedly was arrested and charged with solicitation. At the time of the incident, the agent reportedly did not present himself in his official capacity. A spokesperson for the Secret Service acknowledged on the record to CNN that there was “an alleged incident” and that the situation is under investigation by the Office of Professional Responsibility.


Guantánamo has a feral cat problem. Operation Git-Meow to the rescue:

This base best known for its wartime prison has cats. Lots of cats. Kitty cats. Dumpster cats. House cats. Abandoned cats. Foster cats. Stray cats. Tabby cats. Cuban cats. And, by the estimate of activists who want to do something about it, it has upward of 500 feral cats. In an unusual alliance, some troops, civilians and visitors have teamed up with the global animal rescue group SPCA International and are asking the Navy’s permission to sterilize the cats. They’re also setting up a non-profit organization to help soldiers or sailors on temporary assignment here adopt them and take the home. The group’s name? Operation Git-Meow.
LBN-BUSINESS INSIDER:  ***Pepsi is canning this commercial. Amid backlash for its newly launched “Live For Now Moments Anthem” ad starring Kendall Jenner, the beverage brand has announced plans to pull it and halt any further rollout.   “Pepsi was trying to project a global message of unity, peace and understanding,” the company said in a statement issued Wednesday. “Clearly we missed the mark, and we apologize. We did not intend to make light of any serious issue. We are removing the content and halting any further rollout. We also apologize for putting Kendall Jenner in this position.”
LBN-INVESTIGATES: More than seven years after the Great Recession officially ended, there is yet more depressing research that indicates at least half of Americans are vulnerable to financial disaster. Some 50 percent of people are woefully unprepared for a financial emergency, new research finds. Nearly 1 in 5 Americans (19 percent) have nothing set aside to cover an unexpected emergency, while nearly 1 in 3 Americans (31 percent) don’t have at least $500 set aside to cover an unexpected emergency expense, according to a survey released Tuesday by HomeServe USA, a home repair service. A separate survey released Monday by insurance company MetLife found that 49 percent of employees are “concerned, anxious or fearful about their current financial well-being.”


LBN-VIDEO LINK: NEIL YOUNG: DON’T BE DENIED (Fantastic Documentary with Buffalo, CSNY and Crazy Horse)

LBN-NOTICED:   ***Brad Pitt has made a somewhat rare public appearance since his split with Angelina Jolie by showing up at the Hollywood premiere of “Lost City of Z.” The actor looked noticeably thinner when arriving at the Arclight Cinemas on Tuesday night. Although he was pelted with questions from reporters, Pitt gave a wave and said only, “Hi. Good to see you all.”    ***Lenny Kravitz at the GLO Good Foundation’s benefit at the Gotham Comedy Club in NYC.   ***Bobby Cannavale eating a burger solo at PJ Clarke’s.   ***Dwyane Wade with Dsquared2 designers Dean and Dan Caten at Omar’s in NYC on the same night as Malia Obama.   ***Gigi and Yolanda Hadid at Zuma New York.

CHRIS CHRISTIE – The Problem Is You:

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie spoke at real-estate billionaire Jeff Greene’s Managing the Disruption conference and appeared to blame his current political situation on everyone but himself. “Politicians are simple people,” he opined. “As much as you may hate to hear this in the current context, if you want to see who we are and what we do: Hold up a mirror. We are a reflection of you.” “It’s not what we put out, it’s what comes back at us,” Christie said. When tweeting about a “substantive issue,” “I got responses like ‘lose weight,’ ‘when are you just going to go away?’ ” he said. “I’m telling you, these are exact quotes. ‘How does your family live with you?’ ‘You should be in jail’ . . . That’s not me, that’s you . . . If you want to know where the coarseness in today’s politics comes from, it comes from you.”

LBN-SPOTLIGHT: “Effective leadership is not about making speeches or being liked; leadership is defined by results not attributes.” —–

LBN-R.I.P.:   **Arthur Bisguier, a largely self-taught chess grandmaster who brought a native Bronx brashness to his style of play in defeating some of the game’s greatest players while finding mostly frustration when he faced Bobby Fischer, died on Wednesday in Framingham, Mass. He was 87. His daughter Erica Bisguier said the death, at a care facility, was caused by respiratory failure.   ***Paul O’Neill, the producer who put together Christmas-inspired prog-metal group Trans-Siberian Orchestra, has died. The group’s Facebook page reported the news Wednesday night, saying he had been suffering from a chronic illness. He was 61.

LBN-SPOTLIGHT: “Without Notes” with M. Zuhdi Jasser M.D. – Episode 1: The Early Years —-

LBN-OVERHEARD: ***Have Scarlett Johansson and Romain Dauriac found peace? The exes, both dressed in black, posed for a photo together during the Singular Object Art Opening cocktail reception at 53W53 Gallery in New York City Wednesday. It’s unknown whether Scarlett, 32, and Romain, 35, arrived as friends or if it was just a coincidental run-in. Scarlett filed for divorce in March after quietly separating last summer. The former couple has a 2-year-old daughter, Rose Dorothy Dauriac, and they had an informal week-on/week-off custody arrangement. But, when Scarlett filed for divorce, she petitioned for sole custody. **Ann Coulter loves “Good Times” star Jimmie Walker — but only as a friend. The tall, blond, conservative gadfly told me, “This rumor spreads every now and then, but it’s never been true.” The rumor recently resurfaced when “Black-ish” creator Kenya Barris sat down for Entertainment Weekly with Norman Lear, 94, who produced “Good Times,” “All in the Family” and “The Jeffersons.”


LBN E-Lert Edited By Dan Gaylord

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