LBN – Special Report – Tuesday


While delivering a keynote address at a journalism awards ceremony Monday evening, President Obama scolded the media for enabling the deeply partisan atmosphere that’s engulfing politics. “It’s worth asking ourselves what each of us—as politicians, as journalists, but most of all as citizens—may have done” to create the situation at hand, he said. “Some may be more to blame than others for the current climate, but all of us are responsible for reversing it.” Though he did not directly name Donald Trump, the president chided political reporters for not doing “more than just handing someone a microphone”—alluding to the GOP frontrunner’s appetite for free media. The job of a reporter, Obama contended, is purely “to probe and to question and to dig deeper,” before noting that financial pressures have changed the industry’s incentives when it comes to story selection and editorial decisions.

*Lovesick Man’s Hijacking Ends Peacefully

A bizarre airline hijacking—in which a man claiming to be armed with an explosive belt this morning seized control of an EgyptAir plane carrying 82 passengers and diverted it to Cyprus so he could deliver a love letter to his estranged wife—is over. Officials said all passengers and crew have safely exited the aircraft and the hijacker has been arrested. When news of the attack first broke, it was widely assumed to be another attack by ISIS fighters. However, it soon emerged that the hijacker had a very personal reason for his dramatic actions: He wanted to get a letter to his Cypriot ex-wife. “It’s all to do with a woman,” said Cyprus’s president, Nikos Anastasiades. An official with Egypt’s ministry of foreign affairs told a reporter, “He’s not a terrorist, he’s an idiot.”

*U.S. Says It Has Unlocked iPhone Without Apple

The Justice Department said on Monday that it had found a way to unlock an iPhone without help from Apple, allowing the agency to withdraw its legal effort to compel the tech company to assist in a mass-shooting investigation. The decision to drop the case — which involved demanding Apple’s help to open an iPhone used by Syed Rizwan Farook, a gunman in the December shooting in San Bernardino, Calif., that killed 14 people — ends a legal standoff between the government and the world’s most valuable public company. The case had become increasingly contentious as Apple refused to help the authorities, inciting a debate about whether privacy or security was more important.

*Trump and Clinton Supporters Lead in Enthusiasm Says Media Expert Levine

As the 2016 primaries continue, with neither party’s nominee yet decided, media expert and author Michael Levine( say sharp differences exist in the enthusiasm expressed by supporters of the various candidates. “Among Republicans and Republican leaners, voters who support Donald Trump are the most enthusiastic by far, with a combined 65% describing themselves as extremely or very enthusiastic,” said Levine. These numbers reflect nearly twice the level of fervor expressed by Republicans backing Gov. John Kasich (33%), and well eclipses the enthusiasm from those backing Sen. Ted Cruz (39%) Levine noted.

*LBN-INVESTIGATES: Chicago has long been troubled by violence, but homicides and shootings have risen sharply this year. Violent crime remains below the levels of two decades ago, and criminologists caution against finding trends in only a few months of data. But City Hall, the police and community leaders are alarmed by the surge: As of Friday, 131 people had been killed here in the first months of 2016, an 84 percent rise in homicides from the same period in 2015. There had been 605 shootings, nearly twice as many as at this point last year.

*Hackers Freeze Out DC Hospital

One of the largest hospital chains in the Washington, D.C. area was shut down by computer malware Monday that prevented medical staff from even looking up phone numbers. The attack on MedStar Health Inc. forced record systems offline, meaning patients could not book appointments and staff members couldn’t even check emails. The attack comes just weeks after a hospital in California was reported to have paid a bitcoin ransom to malicious hackers to regain control of its system. The FBI said it is assessing  whether MedStar is dealing with the same kind of situation. One MedStar employee told a reporter: “We can’t do anything at all. There’s only one system we use, and now it’s just paper.” But company spokeswoman Ann Nickels said patient care was not affected by the attack and that all hospitals were using a paper backup system.

*Emails: NHL Admits Link Between Fighting and Brain Trauma

Newly released emails from 2011 reveal top National Hockey League officials acknowledging a link between fighting and brain trauma, depression, and “personal tragedies.” This despite the league’s official stance that there is no connection between the sport’s violent contact and concussions. The emails were unsealed via a January court order in the class-action lawsuit against the NHL filed by more than two dozen former players. The athletes contend that the NHL failed to “properly educate them about the risks associated with repeated head injuries.”

*LBN-NOTICED:   ***Media experts and close friends Elliot Mintz and Michael Levine having dinner last night at a packed Baltaire restaurant in Brentwood.    ***”Blindspot” actressJaimie Alexander, Jets player Muhammad Wilkerson and celebrity chef Anne Burrell watching the New York Rangers play the Pittsburgh Penguins on Easter Sunday.

*LBN-HEALTH WATCH:   ***The high life expectancy enjoyed in Japan is largely down to the nation’s healthy diet, according to a new study. The population of the island nation, which has one of the lowest mortality rates in the world, eat diets high in certain carbohydrates, vegetables, fruits as well as fish and meat.  Such foods make for a diet low in saturated fats, processed foods and high in carbohydrates gained from both rice and vegetables.


*LBN-MUSIC INSIDER:   ***Former Kiss guitarist Ace ­Frehleyinvited the band’s lead singer, Paul Stanley, to appear on his upcoming solo album of covers, “Origins, Vol. 1,” despite some bad blood in the past. “I was a little apprehensive. I wasn’t sure what the reaction would be,” Frehley told Page Six. But Stanley “picked up his cell on the first ring . . . He said, ‘Ace Frehley! I’d love to be involved!’” The two then collaborated on a cover of “Fire and Water” by Free.

*LBN-SPOTLIGHT:  “… remember one thing only: that it’s you-nobody else-who determines your destiny and decides your fate. Nobody else can be alive for you; nor can you be alive for anybody else.” – E.E. Cummings —–

*LBN-MY REVIEW: “I love LBN. It is bad-ass!”—–Zoey W., an LBN reader from Austin, Texas.

*LBN-COMMENTARY by Dennis Prager (Radio talk show host and author): I have said from the outset that I would vote for Donald Trump if he were chosen as the Republican nominee. I am contemptuous of much of what he does; I don’t trust what he says, and I have no reason to believe that he actually holds conservative values. But, if Trump becomes the GOP nominee, he will be the only alternative to the left ruining America for another four years. Really, though, their ruining could go on for much longer than four years. With two or three more left-wing Supreme Court justices, the left wouldn’t need to win the presidency or Congress in order to “fundamentally (transform) the United States of America,” as President Barack Obama promised in 2008. With a leftist Supreme Court, the Court will transform America simply by legislating from the bench. Leftist justices seem to regard their role as promoting social justice, not judging according to the rules of justice within the constraints of the Constitution. As far as domestic policy is concerned, the presidency and Congress will become irrelevant with a majority leftist Supreme Court.


*LBN-OVERHEARD:   ***William Shatner is being sued for $170 million by a radio host who claims to be the “Star Trek” legend’s long-lost son. Peter Sloan has boldly gone and filed legal paperwork in Florida demanding Shatner submit to a DNA test and cease claiming he isn’t his father. Sloan, 59, claims his birth mother, late Canadian actress Kathy McNeil, had a brief affair with Captain Kirk in Toronto. She gave him up for adoption at 5 days old.   ***Charlize Theron didn’t fade away from Sean Penn. “When you leave a relationship there has to be some f—ing crazy story or some crazy drama,” the “Mad Max” beauty told WSJ Magazine. “There is a need to sensationalize things.” Theron, 40, who called off her engagement to Penn, 55, last June, revealed she never ghosted the man she once referred to as “the love of my life.” “And the f—ing ghosting thing, like literally, I still don’t even know what it is,” she said. “It’s just its own beast. We were in a relationship and it didn’t work anymore. And we both decided to separate. That’s it.”   ***Bill Clinton is upset his wife’s campaign team doesn’t follow his advice — and because he often can’t even get Hillary on the phone. “Those snotty-nosed kids over there are blowing this thing because nobody is listening to me,” Bill told campaign chairman John Podesta, according to OrbMagazine. The former president has not only clashed over policy with Hillary’s closest adviser, Huma Abedin, he’s also said to be furious he can’t phone his wife without going through Abedin, who carries Hillary’s cellphone and screens all her calls. “When Mrs. Clinton and Ms. Abedin are traveling, they always share a suite, which they lock from the inside to bar the Secret Service,” Orb reports.

LBN E-Lert Edited By Marcelle Luna

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