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Republicans’ values, not votes, are behind House failures

We hear the same excuse all the time: “House Republicans hold the slimmest majority ever.” Republican leaders, conservative pundits, and even Donald Trump have touted some variation on that line in defense of House Speaker Mike Johnson (R-La.) and his routine betrayals of conservative principles and policies. The excuse isn’t just wrong, it’s dangerous. It gives the impression that the landscape will improve next year if and when Republicans widen their majority in the November general election. Republicans are unlikely to obtain a 60-seat House majority. At best, it would be a 10-seat majority. And at least half of the GOP conference is not conservative at all. Wrong. The GOP’s problem isn’t numbers, but values. Unless conservatives engage in the current primary elections, we will be stuck with the same perfidious Republicans who sell us out time and time and time again. Here are four points to consider when assessing the House Republican majority’s record since January 2023. 1) Republicans fumbled even with a larger majority They might have the smallest majority now, but they didn’t start out that way. This Congress began with a 222-213 Republican majority. Sure, that’s small. But it was also what the Democrats had in the previous Congress. They had little trouble passing nearly every one of Joe Biden’s priorities and all his budget bills. Before Republicans lost seats to retirement, they had a major leverage point with the debt ceiling. Both the debt crisis and the border crisis are vastly worse now than they were during Barack Obama’s administration, and Obama was a much better communicator than Biden. Yet, the GOP House led by former Rep. John Boehner (R-Ohio) managed to win concessions on the border in return for raising the debt ceiling in 2011. Who would have thought we’d ever miss Boehner the Statesman? Despite total GOP unity around the Limit, Save, Grow Act in return for raising the debt ceiling, the feckless Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) not only conceded every single GOP demand but also gave Biden an extra year of free debt spending — more than he asked for. That betrayal had nothing to do with the limitations of a slim majority. That was a betrayal of values. Most Republicans don’t believe in keeping their campaign promises when it matters most. Johnson is little different from McCarthy in that way. He threw away Republicans’ leverage to give Biden endless debt servicing in exchange for nothing at all. 2) The unprecedented budget sellout Republicans had enough votes to unite behind strong appropriations bills as recently as March 22. They could have demanded an end to the border invasion in exchange for a budget. Johnson is hardly the first Republican leader to fear a government shutdown, but Biden is a very unpopular president pushing very unpopular policies. Not only did Johnson lack the nerve to demand real action on the border, but the budget vote deadline fell the same week as Georgia nursing student Laken Riley was murdered by an illegal alien gang member. Johnson and all but a few stalwart conservatives rolled over anyway. Bad enough that Johnson refused to fight even one day on the illegal immigration issue. Worse, Johnson refused to accept an automatic $76 billion in non-defense spending cuts if he had simply advanced a clean, continuing resolution. Ideally, conservatives would have demanded policy riders on the final funding bill. But, if all else failed, simply passing a clean bill would have delivered “free” spending cuts, thanks to the “Massie provision” of the debt ceiling deal. Democrats had no leverage to shut down the government over a clean bill. Or Johnson could have used the looming threat of those cuts to demand concessions from Biden on the border. But no. He all but threw away that option in January when he gave Democrats everything they wanted plus extra spending and a record number of earmarks. In the process, Johnson manipulated the rules, as has become his practice with every major bill, to bypass the Rules Committee and block all conservative amendments. 3) Johnson bungled FISA reform even with Democrats’ support Tightening rules for obtaining warrants under the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act might be the only major issue of our time that draws broad bipartisan support. Johnson once again blew an opportunity to give conservatives a win, except this time with Democrats’ votes. After stabbing conservatives in the back in December and passing the National Defense Authorization Act without Republicans’ anti-woke riders and needlessly attaching a short-term FISA extension, Johnson promised he would fight for conservative reforms in April. When April came around, 86 Democrats voted for Rep. Andy Biggs’ (R-Ariz.) amendment that would have required a warrant before federal agents could quarry information on American citizens. Johnson himself cast the deciding vote to defeat the amendment, which tied at 212-212. Again, this had nothing to do with the Republicans’ slim majority. Johnson had a chance to do the right thing. He did the opposite. 4) Funding Ukraine and Hamas for nothing in return Donald Trump recently spoke out against Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene’s motion to vacate the chair, calling Johnson “a good man who is trying very hard.” Oh, he is trying hard, all right. Johnson cleverly and deviously worked with House Democrats and Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) to ensure they got everything they wanted on additional billions in aid to Ukraine and Hamas while ignoring conservatives’ demands for a strong border bill. Johnson and his lukewarm Republicans sabotaged their leverage on every must-pass bill. But they had a real chance to fight on the foreign aid bill because it had no deadline. It was essentially a Democratic Party wish list. While it may be true Republicans lack the votes to pass good bills, they certainly have no obligation to help pass the Democrats’ standalone priorities. But because Democrats wanted Ukraine funding so badly, Johnson had the chance to dangle Ukraine funding in return for border security. Remember, Johnson promised to oppose Ukraine funding. When he reneged on that, he promised a watered-down version of Schumer’s Senate bill in return for better border security. In the end, out of nowhere, Johnson agreed to pass the full Senate bill without the possibility of amendment, which included $60 billion for Ukraine, $9 billion for Gaza, $3.5 billion for the very refugee groups thronging our border, and the ability for Biden to redirect Taiwan aid to Ukraine. Now, Biden is making a mockery out of Johnson and the GOP by holding up weapons shipments to Israel, and I wouldn’t be surprised if he sent them to Ukraine. So, what happened to border security? Johnson could have easily tied HR 2 in with the other foreign aid bills, just as he sewed together the four aid bills after passing each of them separately. He didn’t lack the votes. Every Republican and five Democrats wound up voting for the border bill. But whereas the four bad foreign aid bills were packaged together, the border bill was left out of the package. It was rendered a meaningless standalone bill that the Senate could safely ignore while funding for Ukraine, Hamas, and the border invasion sailed through. Johnson reported HR 2 as a new border bill sponsored by Rep. Tony Gonzales (R-Texas) as a way of protecting him against a primary challenge. Gonzales previously referred to the House border bill as “not Christian” and “very anti-American.” Nothing will change in 2025 if we don’t change It’s important to set the record straight not so much to relitigate the past as it is to prepare for the future. Again, Mike Johnson’s stewardship of the House is not a math problem but a values problem. Trump and the establishment are trying to convey the impression that we just need to wait until next year when Trump is (somehow) back in the White House and Republicans will have a few more seats in the House. A majority matters less than who makes up that majority. The solution is not a greater Republican majority but rather a greater conservative majority. Let’s sleep through the primaries, not push for better leaders, unite behind a phantom general election, and live happily ever after. No. Let’s not. Even under the best of circumstances, Republicans are unlikely to obtain a 60-seat House majority. At best, it would be a 10-seat majority. Given the lack of accomplishments and the pointless fights with Democrats on unpopular issues, it’s a fair bet the Republicans won’t keep the House at all. Fact is, at least half of the GOP conference is not conservative. Sixty-five members of the Republican Mainstreet Caucus are often to the left of the establishment. That means the RINO caucus is double the size of the Freedom Caucus. Oh, and this is before we even discuss the Senate GOP, which makes Mike Johnson look like Chip Roy. So, let’s try to imagine 2025. Suppose Trump is re-elected and follows through with his promises to end birthright citizenship, cut spending, and greatly curtail foreign aid. Suppose Trump supporters push an even more transformational agenda, such as liability reform for vaccine makers, reining in the FBI, and erasing transgenderism and environmental extremism from federal agencies. Pick your important issue. Then understand that your Republican opponents will vastly outnumber the margin of any GOP majority. A majority matters less than who makes up that majority. Right now, more than half of House Republicans and a super-majority of Senate Republicans believe that debt-ceiling bills, budget bills, defense bills, and other large programs must not be allowed to expire for even a second. They will never have leverage to force changes even on popular issues because they refuse to use it. The solution is not a greater Republican majority but rather a greater conservative majority. We need to focus on the congressional primaries and replace every Republican member who believes in protecting Ukraine’s borders more than our own. Absent aggressive intervention in primaries, the general election will be close to meaningless. Sadly, if we continue to sleep through the primaries and allow Trump to support every incumbent RINO while also opposing the incumbent chairman of the Freedom Caucus, we will never advance our agenda even with a historically large Republican majority. Then again, at this rate, there will be no GOP majority at all, which is fine because we never really had a majority to begin with. Conservative influencers can’t be bothered with trivial things like primaries.

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How tornado season is changing

Tornado season is here again, with twisters striking in Indiana, Pennsylvania, and Florida over the past few weeks. But while severe storms in spring are nothing new, there have been subtle changes in tornado patterns in recent years that portend a more dangerous future for communities across the country. According to a preliminary count from the National Centers for Environmental Information, there have been 547 tornadoes documented from January through April 2024. That figure is higher than the year-to-date average — 338 — the organization calculated between 1991 and 2020 but in line with the number observed in 2022 and 2023 in the same time frame. And even as the number of tornadoes has stayed relatively consistent in the last few years, experts say there have been key changes in their behavior over time that could have major consequences. More tornadoes are now concentrated in fewer days, meaning they are less spread out and there’s a higher number occurring on the same day, according to a 2019 study published in Theoretical and Applied Climatology. A growing number of tornadoes are also occurring in the southeastern part of the US in addition to the Great Plains, where they have been historically most common. There’s still a lot experts don’t know about why both these trends are occurring and it’s not clear if climate change is playing a role. What is more certain is that these shifts mean people will have to prepare for these natural disasters in new ways, with some communities enduring more severe storms in rapid succession and others being forced to build infrastructure for tornadoes they had rarely experienced before. Scientists have some information about why there are more concentrated tornadoes, or clustering, and why the locations of tornadoes have shifted slightly. With clustering, it’s tied to the presence of atmospheric and wind conditions that fuel dozens of tornadoes at once. And with changes in geography, it’s related to parts of the country drying out while other areas are seeing more rain. The increase in tornado clustering has been observed since the 1980s and continues into present day, says Tyler Fricker, an author of the 2019 study on the subject. According to that study, while 11 percent of tornadoes occurred on days when there were 20 or more tornadoes from 1950 to 1970, now 29 percent of them do. The prevalence of low-pressure systems, warm moist environments, and high wind shear (changes in speed and direction of wind combined with height) all come together to fuel these clusters. “We are seeing a reduction in the total number of days where there are tornadoes, but those that do occur are almost ‘supercharged,’ producing substantially more tornadoes than what we would otherwise expect,” says Jana Houser, an atmospheric scientist at Ohio State University. What’s still unknown is whether such shifts are related to climate change as the Earth has gotten warmer due to human-generated greenhouse gases. “It’s hard to pull out the different trends — maybe the natural variations are impacting tornadoes, maybe the broader climate change, maybe it’s a combination of both,” says Jase Bernhardt, a climatologist at Hofstra University. “We want more research done to understand why it’s happening.” Experts similarly have some sense of why tornado geography has shifted, though they’re still working to untangle the factors involved. Environmental conditions in the last few decades, for instance, have made the southeastern parts of the US more conducive to tornado formation. And as the Great Plains dry out more and parts of the Midwest and Southeast experience increases in precipitation, that’s made the latter regions more susceptible to tornadoes, Bernhardt says. “Tornado Alley” is historically the corridor that runs from South Dakota south through Iowa to Oklahoma and Texas. Increasingly, scientists have noticed larger numbers of tornadoes occurring eastward in places including Tennessee, which is part of a collection of southern states known as “Dixie Alley.” According to a 2018 study from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, more tornadoes were starting to emerge in the Midwest and Southeast as they simultaneously declined in the Great Plains. These shifts in tornado patterns could have serious consequences for the communities that they affect. When many tornadoes happen in one day, people may get buffeted with natural disasters and have to anticipate multiple events in a short period of time. That presents a challenge for forecasters, who have to put out rapid-fire alerts in a condensed window, says Fricker. People in the affected areas also have to prepare for a quick series of storms and ensure that they have shelter and supplies to endure all of them. “You might have waves of these storms coming through your area, which means you can’t just be on for an hour or two, you kind of have to be on for the entirety of that day,” says Fricker. “And so from a human and from a property perspective, outbreaks are more likely to be disruptive, and they’re more difficult to really prepare for … because there’s so much more going on.” Changes in the geographic distribution of tornadoes could also lead to long-term effects on larger population centers, and force communities that never had to worry about tornadoes previously to shore up their infrastructure. “As tornadoes leave the great wide open of the Plains, they will encroach on places where more people live, often in mobile homes and other structures that aren’t prepared for them,” Mark Gongloff writes for Bloomberg. “Policymakers need to help vulnerable people prepare for a potentially more dangerous future and ensure that infrastructure and housing can better withstand whatever nature brings.” Broadly, scientists’ research can help new areas of the country make preparations as they anticipate more tornadoes down the line. Doing so effectively, however, could require more support for the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), which doles out funds for rebuilding and preparation efforts. As Scientific American reports, FEMA’s disaster relief fund is due to run out of money partway through the year, a shortfall that also existed in 2023, which led to the agency putting thousands of projects on hold. “Given the trend toward increasing tornadoes in areas outside the traditional ‘tornado alley,’” Houser says, “people need to be on their guard in areas that may not have normally expected to see tornadoes.“

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NFL schedule 2024: Tracking latest rumors for next season’s games

In the sports world, the NFL remains king. Among the reasons for football’s ability to captivate audiences? The league has found ways to stay in the conversation even in the offseason. Free agency and the NFL Draft are two examples, but perhaps the biggest example of the league’s ability to draw attention during the off months comes this week, when the league releases its schedule in primetime Wednesday. Again, due to the NFL’s schedule format we know what the games are next year, but over the next few days, culminating on Wednesday night, we will learn who is playing who, when. And it will dominate sports media for days, even with the NHL and NBA playoffs underway, MLB heading into the summer, the WNBA beginning a highly-anticipated season, Formula 1 in the midst of what could be a very interesting campaign, and the Olympics looming around the corner. Despite all that … a list of schedules will be the focus for the rest of this week and into next. And you better believe we will have all of it covered here on SB Nation, from breakdowns, rumors, schedule release videos, and more. Ahead of the main event, we will be tracking games as they are released, as well as keeping tabs on all the latest scheduling rumors. The rumors will be up top, and the games will be added on a week-by-week basis below the latest rumors. So check back early and often!

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George Stephanopoulos Talks Jimmy Carter’s Psychic Briefing and Grilling Trump Endorsers

Following that wunderkind tenure on Bill Clinton’s 1992 presidential campaign and ensuing roles within the Clinton White House, George Stephanopoulos has been a mainstay of American political media. But he hasn’t, in the 25 years since memoir All Too Human: A Political Education, revisited the beltway — or anything — in a book. “I’ve turned down many book [ideas],” says the Good Morning America co-anchor and host of ABC News’ This Week. “I actually started another and just didn’t finish it. I didn’t think it was new or that I could do it well enough.” Stephanopoulos’ interest, however, was finally piqued by a subject a few years back that — one he initially mistook for low-hanging fruit. But it turns out that the Situation Room, the West Wing’s intelligence operations center and ground zero for so many dramatic (told and untold) moments in U.S. history, had never gotten a proper nonfiction treatment. Stephanopoulos quickly signed on. The fruits of his labor, a presidency-by-presidency look at the room’s most fraught hours, arrives Tuesday with the publication of The Situation Room: The Inside Story of Presidents in Crisis. It chronicles the hub from its creation under President Kennedy to President Biden’s waning first term, with a harrowing account of the Jan. 6 insurrection thrown in for good measure. Chatting about the book over the phone in late April, Stephanopoulos teased the most unusual revelation from his research, opined on taking Donald Trump supporters to task on This Week and went through the conundrum of Trump and Biden’s “Will They or Won’t They?” debate dance ahead of the coming election. Here are the highlights. Biggest Research Surprise? Jimmy Carter’s Psychic Sit-Down“We scoured all of the presidential memoirs, all of the presidential diaries, and I saw this line about parapsychology,” he says. “We tracked down Jake Stewart, who was Jimmy Carter’s Naval Aide, and he told us about how he briefed Carter in the Situation Room on the use of psychics to help locate the hostages trapped in Iran. That just blew me away.” The Impact of Grilling Trump Supporters“Well, it’s prompted a lawsuit from Donald Trump,” Stephanopoulos says, referencing the former president’s recent defamation suit against himself and ABC News. It’s [the guest’s] choice whether to come on or not, but I think it’s my responsibility to ask those questions. I’ve been doing this now for several months. If someone is coming on who’s endorsed Donald Trump for president, I do believe they should have to account for it. My job is to hold politicians and policymakers accountable. They should have to account for their defense of his attempts to overturn the 2020 election, his indictments for classified documents, his indictments for sexual abuse and defamation. If you’re going to endorse someone who’s been indicted for those kinds of activities — and, in civil cases, been adjudicated against for those kinds of activities — you should have explain why you think someone with that kind of record should be president.”The Situation Room Audiobook Is More Like a Podcast“We did over 120 interviews, almost all of them on Zoom — which actually made for what I think will be a special audiobook,” he says. “It will feel more like a podcast than a book. I’m the narrator, but we were able to weave in all the interviews so the people being quoted are speaking in their own voice.” The Presidential Debate Dilemma“President Biden said he wanted to debate, and Donald Trump said he wants to, so let’s see what happens,” he says. “It’s going to be interesting after the last experience. It’s going to be difficult to figure out how to keep the candidates focused and to ensure that the debate is conducted in a way that’s based on facts. … But [a moderator] has to be in control. It’s just been shown as one of the difficulties of doing a lot of interview with former President Trump. If he’s going to flood the zone with falsehoods, it’s almost impossible to fact-check all that in real time, which I think does raise real challenges for how to conduct a debate.”

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Spider-Man ‘Noir’ Series Starring Nicolas Cage a Go at Amazon

Nicolas Cage is putting on the Spidey suit for Amazon. Amazon, ahead of its first upfront presentation Tuesday, announced that it is moving forward with Noir, a live-action series based on the Marvel comic Spider-Man Noir. Cage will star in the series, which was first put in development more than a year ago at the streamer. Noir revolves around an aging and down on his luck private investigator (Cage) in 1930s New York, who is forced to grapple with his past life as the city’s one and only superhero. The series is produced by Sony Pictures Television and Amazon MGM Studios. Noir is part of the larger Marvel universe that Amazon is assembling, with the streamer already working on Silk: Spider Society with The Walking Dead alum Angela Kang. Chris Miller and Phil Lord, the producers of Sony’s Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse animated movies, are overseeing Amazon’s Marvel franchise. The duo first brought the Spider-Man Noir character to screens with Spider-Verse and will exec produce Noir alongside showrunners Oren Uziel (22 Jump Street) and Steve Lightfoot (Netflix’s Marvel show, Punisher). Amy Pascal, who has a hand in all of Sony’s Spider-Man adaptations, will also be credited as an exec producer. “Expanding the Marvel universe with Noir is a uniquely special opportunity and we are honored to bring this series to our global Prime Video customers,” said Vernon Sanders, head of television at Amazon MGM Studios. “The extremely talented Nicolas Cage is an ideal choice for our new superhero and the accomplished producing team with Phil Lord, Christopher Miller, Amy Pascal and the incredible team at Sony is dedicated to expanding this franchise in the most authentic way.” Like Silk, Noir will first debut on MGM+ — the premium cable network formerly known as Epix that is now owned by Amazon — before both shows debut on the streamer. “We are absolutely thrilled to have Nicolas Cage starring in this series! No one else could bring such pathos, pain and heart to this singular character. Along with our brilliant producers and partners at Amazon MGM Studios and Prime Video, we couldn’t ask for a better team to explore this reimagining of such an iconic character in Sony’s Universe of Marvel Characters,” said Katherine Pope, president of Sony Pictures Television Studios. Lord and Miller moved their overall deal from Disney’s 20th Television to Sony in April 2019 and, as part of the nine-figure pact, were handed control of the studio’s Marvel slate. Sony retains rights to characters including Spider-Man (and all his villains, like Green Goblin); Venom (the Tim Hardy films); Morbius (i.e. the live-action feature with Jared Leto); and Black Cat and Silver Sable (both previously in development on the feature side). Select TV projects related to Sony’s Marvel characters will be produced in partnership with former Sony Pictures Entertainment co-chairman Pascal. Also possibly on the table: all the characters from Into the Spider-Verse. A premiere date for Noir (or Silk) has not yet been determined. Cage, whose vast credits include Leaving Las Vegas and Face/Off, is repped by WME, Stride Management and Goodman Genow.

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SummerSlam, Survivor Series or WrestleMania 41: When Will Roman Reigns Wrestle Again?

It has been over a month since Cody Rhodes dethroned Roman Reigns at WrestleMania 40, leaving many fans to wonder when they will see the former undisputed WWE universal champion again. The Tribal Chief presided over the roster as the face of the company and the biggest star in the industry for 1,316 days, making him the most dominant champion of the modern era. In addition, the rise and fall of The Bloodline became the most engaging storyline on weekly television. Solo Sikoa has taken over in his cousin’s absence, and exiled Jimmy Uso while recruiting Tama Tonga and Tanga Loa. To that end, the group continues to produce entertaining segments, but Reigns still looms heavily over every new development. The palpable tension between Paul Heyman and Sikoa is a great way to build anticipation for Reigns to return and reclaim his spot. It’s only a matter of time before this coup grows out of control and its de facto leader has to face The Head of the Table. So, where is the 38-year-old, and what has he been up to since Night 2 of The Showcase of the Immortals? Following the Raw after ‘Mania, he posted a clip in the gym with the caption, “Yesterday I mourned. Today is Day 1.” Nevertheless, the second-generation Superstar hasn’t reemerged on Raw or SmackDown. Instead, he seemingly withdrew himself from the WWE draft, and Heyman later revealed he hasn’t spoken to him since The Show of Shows. So, it was The Wise Man who pulled him out of this year’s talent pool. That revelation suggests the most valuable free agent on the roster will eventually return to the blue brand, but when will he wrestle again? Back To The Place Where It All Started We’ve known for some time that Reigns would go on a sabbatical after he worked both nights of WrestleMania. This seems like a logical chance to reset his character and set up the best scenario for his return. The prominent star is already on a part-time schedule, and his next appearance will generate a raucous reaction. So, it makes perfect sense for WWE to build up a new adversary to fill the power vacuum while he’s away. Dave Meltzer of the Wrestling Observer Newsletter also predicted that the former champion would take a break no matter what the outcome of his rematch with Rhodes turned out to be: “I don’t think anyone believes Reigns would retire with a loss, and WWE has taught fans not to believe it, but given his schedule, it’s probable he’d take some time off. Given his limited schedule, one wouldn’t even expect him on a show again until the as yet unannounced next Saudi Arabia show (last word being on 5/25) and the 8/3 SummerSlam show in Cleveland.” There’s little chance that The Tribal Chief will be back in time for King and Queen of the Ring, which will take place next weekend. However, a rumor surfaced that he was among the featured Superstars listed for the go-home episode of SmackDown before SummerSlam. Although this listing doesn’t appear on WWE’s website, The Biggest Party of the Summer seems like the most plausible destination for his in-ring return. After all, Reigns returned at the event in 2020, set his sights on the universal title and kicked off his heel turn. It would be poetic if he returned to the birthplace of his current character to reclaim his place at the head of the table. The Bloodline Civil War If the end goal is to create a new threat that would force the original Bloodline to reunite, Survivor Series would be the ideal location for their showdown. In fact, that could be the premise for this year’s men’s WarGames match. Reigns and The Usos vs. Sikoa, Tama Tonga and Tanga Lao must be the ideal matchup, right? It could even be an eight-man match amid rumors that Jacob Fatu has signed with WWE. However, it will take some time to get all the pieces in play and create the proper motivations for the OG members to band together again. That’s not a story WWE would likely tell as Reigns’ first match back. It would make much more sense for The Tribal Chief to fail to regain his title first, giving Sikoa the justification to try to claim his position. This would set up a face turn and the schism that would cause him to dismantle his own creation. The Verdict SummerSlam is the best option for Reigns’ in-ring return. The route would allow WWE to plan a marquee title match worthy of the event and plant seeds for Survivor Series. WrestleMania 41 is also a possibility, but it’s hard to believe the company’s biggest star will remain absent for the rest of the year. That would be an epic way to position him as a surprise entrant in the 2025 men’s Royal Rumble match or give Sikoa’s coup time to stew. It would even give fans enough time to start the annual tradition of speculating about his long-awaited dream match with The Rock. Nevertheless, a return later this year in time for The Biggest Party of the Summer seems more likely.

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Nicolas Cage to Star in Live-Action Spider-Man Noir Series

Maguire. Garfield. Holland. And now, Cage. In maybe one of the coolest pieces of news in recent memory, Oscar-winning legend Nicolas Cage is set to star in Noir, a live-action Spider-Man show coming to Prime Video. Cage previously voiced the character in Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse and will now bring the 1930s New York City private detective into reality. The move, in turn, adds him to the short, prestigious list of live-action Spider-Men. “Noir tells the story of an aging and down on his luck private investigator (Cage) in 1930s New York, who is forced to grapple with his past life as the city’s one and only superhero,” the press release says. Debuting domestically on MGM+, followed by a global release on Prime Video, it’ll be co-showrun by Oren Uziel (Mortal Kombat) and Steve Lightfoot (Marvel’s The Punisher) with Harry Bradbeer (Fleabag, Killing Eve) directing the first two episodes. They’ll all also produce along with Into/Across/Beyond the Spider-Verse’s Phil Lord, Christopher Miller, and Amy Pascal. “We are absolutely thrilled to have Nicolas Cage starring in this series!” Katherine Pope, President Sony Pictures Television Studios, said in a press release. “No one else could bring such pathos, pain, and heart to this singular character. Along with our brilliant producers and partners at Amazon MGM Studios and Prime Video, we couldn’t ask for a better team to explore this reimagining of such an iconic character in Sony’s Universe of Marvel Characters.” So how is any of this going to work? Is Nicolas Cage going to be swinging around as Spider-Man Noir? We doubt it, but it’s still beyond cool that an actor of his caliber is bringing a character he played in animation to live-action. He certainly didn’t have to but we are glad he will. Want more io9 news? Check out when to expect the latest Marvel, Star Wars, and Star Trek releases, what’s next for the DC Universe on film and TV, and everything you need to know about the future of Doctor Who.

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Boston Rob reacts to Deal or No Deal Island copying penalty

Warning: This article contains spoilers about the Deal or No Deal Island season 1 finale. Boston Rob Mariano’s game technically ended on this week’s finale episode of Deal or No Deal Island when he was the last person to return with a briefcase out of the maze. But his game was really over the week before, when he made the fateful mistake of walking over and looking at Amy McCoy’s number puzzle answer. Host Joe Manganiello specifically instructed all the players before the excursion to not look at each other’s boards during the challenge, so when a stumped Mariano looked at Amy’s answer, play was halted and he was assessed a penalty of having to leave three minutes after the last player departed on the briefcase hunt. In the end, it was too much of a deficit to make up. Even though Rob got close, he was never able to pass Amy, and returned with the last case and therefore had to exit the game. How does Rob feel about his penalty? What happened during the incident that we did not see? And how did the entire cast — who reunited to cheer on eventual winner Jordan Fowler in her Temple showdown with Banker Howie Mandel — get along after the game once the cameras were off? We asked the Robfather all that and more. ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: I’m sure they edited this all way down, so why don’t you tell me what happened out there with them stopping the game after you looked over at Amy’s answer to the number puzzle? BOSTON ROB MARIANO: I mean, it’s brutal. No shade, I definitely looked at the other person’s puzzle, and that’s it. I mean, I’m not going to sit here and make an excuse. Yes, when they edited it, it wasn’t as clean. Joe didn’t actually announce “You can’t look at the other person’s puzzle.” All that was done in the pre-walkthrough, just like on Survivor and on all the shows. And they have [the standards and practices department] there, they do the whole thing. I’ve done this for so many years that as soon as they start with that walkthrough, I’m trying to get a peek to see what kind of advantage I can get, what the puzzle’s going to be, what it looks like the challenge is going to be, and that’s it. They definitely did say, “You can’t look at the other person’s puzzle.” So I own it, dude, They also did say, “It’s up to you whether you want to cover your answer or put your tiles back,” which kind of threw me for a loop. Like if you can’t look at the puzzle, then why would I have to do that? Amy got it first. I was well on my way to getting it, then she got out and my first reaction was like, “Man, I don’t think she turned her tiles over. Let me go see.” And I go to look, and actually, she was turned around on her way out of the maze to turn her tiles over when they stopped it. So that was it. I looked at it, I got the penalty. I don’t know that the penalty was three minutes. The penalty, as I understood it, was from when the time when Amy went into the maze until the time the last person got to go into the maze was added on to the last person. So they made it look clean. It was three minutes, but I think it was, in effect, a little bit longer, closer to probably nine or 10 minutes. Ironically, in the moment where I got my hand caught in the cookie jar and they explained what the penalty was going to be, immediately my brain goes to: How can I negate it? So as soon as Joe says “Go!” I’m just going to tell Jordan and Stephanie the answer. So that way there’s no time. But I made mistake 101, where I actually asked production if I could do that, and they said, “No, no, no, don’t do that.” No, you never ask! I know. It would’ve been great TV. So I should have waited. It’s brutal, but it’s fair. It’s not Survivor. I’ve done it for 20 years there and I always think you’re crazy if you don’t look at the puzzle if the other person’s beating you, right? At the same time, that was the rule, and I broke the rule, so I accept the penalty. When I saw it happen, I thought to myself that had you never played Survivor and been trained to go look, that it you probably wouldn’t have done that. Yeah, look, it’s not an excuse. I had a great time out there. Of course, I wanted to win. It’s ironic that nobody actually took me out. I kind of caused my own demise, which, truthfully, hurts a little bit more. But I had such a great experience and it was so fun playing this game. It was so different than everything I’ve done before, and I’m really happy for Jordan. I am, truly. Did the punishment fit the crime? Well, I mean the punishment was longer than it was, but yeah, the punishment definitely fit the crime. Had I not said anything to the producer before, I think I could have negated it in a pretty smart way. I was really surprised that it took them as long as it did in the maze. Truthfully, I thought for sure they were going to be coming out before I even got a chance to go in. So when I saw Amy hopping over the barriers one way, and I’m going the other way, at one point I thought about how I should steal her suitcase and just go — that would’ve been good. But I could hear them celebrating that she had made it, just as I was unlocking my suitcase. How much did she end up beating you by coming out of the maze? I don’t know exactly, but I think it was probably around a minute. The whole challenge maybe lasted about 20 minutes. And like I said, it was a long time from the time Amy went in until the time I got to go in. I flew through the challenge. I really did. I think I made only one wrong turn the whole maze after looking at the map. It’s funny to hear you talking about trying to negate the penalty. It reminds me of The Amazing Race when you got all the other teams to take the two-hour food challenge penalty. And that was the thing — I didn’t ask them! I just did it. And I ran into that a few times. And this is no shade to production, they were awesome. And they did everything to preserve the integrity of the game, for sure. They always did. But because it’s the first season they’ve done a show, and I have so much experience that going into these things, my brain works a little bit differently where I try to find that edge and try to push it. And there were times where I would ask a question about something, but they made us ask it in front of the whole group and not individually, and by asking the question, it not only took away my advantage, but gave it to other people. One example where I know that worked against me big time within the challenge was where we had to drop the thing from the sky. They edited for time that it was a random draw, but it wasn’t actually. Kim got to go first because she had beat the Banker, and she chose me to go first because in the pre-game asking of questions, I said, “What happens if you’re the first to go and you hit the steal? Are you allowed to transfer it over till after everyone goes?” And he was like, “No, if you hit the steal first, you just don’t get it. You lose your turn and you have to go again. So you don’t get to steal from anyone. You’re the first one.” So immediately, Kim’s like, “Okay, Rob, you’re going first. I was like, “Ah, shut your mouth, dude.” You have a very good eye for game mechanics, and the game mechanics here seemed a bit broken to me in that when someone goes against the Banker, they tried to make it seem as if you want to take low numbers off the board, when, in actuality, you want to pick high numbers off the board because that means the odds of your deal will be much better. Did all the players sort of figure that out or not? Does the show need to tweak that moving forward into season 2? I don’t think the mechanic of the game is broken. I just think there’s a little bit of a conflict of interest in terms of what you’re trying to portray to the audience versus what that person in that position actually is beneficial for them. Because when you are the person playing against the Banker, your singular objective is to stay in the game. So you’re exactly right. You want to knock off high cases, with at least one high case remaining. But here’s the thing: If you’re math-based and you understand statistics, you’ll know that the advantage that you’re going to get playing the Banker at best is going to be maybe 80 percent. And at worst you’re going to have a 50 percent. You can always go down to two cases. So if you understand that, it basically makes the Deal or No Deal portion of the game pretty stagnant. You’re going to play it the way you’re going to play it. Now, in subsequent seasons, I’m sure they’ll change that. They’ll introduce some kind of strategy into that portion of the game so it’s not so basic. So I understand what you’re saying about what the audience wants and how it’s portrayed. There was a lot of animosity between a lot of people this season, so what was it like outside of the game after it was all done? Everybody was good, but I think a lot of it was unwarranted. Even the alliance-making, the whole thing. Some of the people — specifically Stephanie and Amy —got caught up in this idea that they thought they were playing Survivor. They thought that was the game. And probably the fact that I was out there lent to it a little bit. But it wasn’t necessary. You saw how many shots there were of me sitting on the beach hanging out, right? Because I’m like, it doesn’t matter! Make all the plans you want. If I do well and win immunity, you can’t get me anyway. And even if not, you got to get lucky and beat the Banker to be able to get me. This whole idea where everybody’s united against me, it gave me a little bit of the Charla and Mirna vibes from The Amazing Race from way back in that season where everybody’s coming at Amber and I. It’s like, “Man, focus on yourself. Why are you so focused on me?” And it didn’t matter so much. Also, there’s no repercussion for breaking your word to anybody. There’s no vote at the end. There’s no way for them to be accountable for whatever they do in the court of public opinion. The audience might not like it, but it’s not going to change the dynamic of gameplay. Sign up for Entertainment Weekly’s free daily newsletter to get breaking TV news, exclusive first looks, recaps, reviews, interviews with your favorite stars, and more. So I think optimally, as ironic as it is, playing the middle and floating kind of the way Jordan did was, effectively, the best strategy. Even though I recognized that early, I wasn’t able to play that strategy already coming in there with the target I had, so I feel like based on what I had to work with, I did the best I could, and I got really lucky in a lot of spots. And overall, just a spectacular experience. A lot of fun.

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Jessica Biel: Understanding My Period Has Been a 30-Year Journey

More Must-Reads From TIME What Student Photojournalists Saw at the Campus Protests Women Say They Were Pressured Into Long-Term Birth Control How Far Trump Would Go Scientists Are Finding Out Just How Toxic Your Stuff Is Boredom Makes Us Human John Mulaney Has What Late Night Needs The 100 Most Influential People of 2024 Want Weekly Recs on What to Watch, Read, and More? Sign Up for Worth Your Time Contact us at letters@time.com TIME Ideas hosts the world’s leading voices, providing commentary on events in news, society, and culture. We welcome outside contributions. Opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect the views of TIME editors.

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Nurturing Confident Humility: The Key To Startup Success

Share to Facebook Share to Twitter Share to Linkedin Confidence is inflated among the least capable, while the most capable tend toward humility. getty Not everyone is cut out to be an entrepreneur. It takes a certain kind of person–Part overconfidence, part underconfidence. You need to trust your abilities but not too much so as to under prepare or fail to predict errors. “Confidence is inflated among the least capable, while the most capable tend toward humility” share Martin Gonzalez and Josh Yellin, authors of The Bonfire Moment. It’s the overconfident CEOs who are bigger risk takers, which often don’t pan out. But the flip side is a challenge as well. In fact, 80% of the founders who are high achievers experience underconfidence at least sometimes. When this happens, their pitching below their weight class or limiting their ambitions. Confident Humility In the exhilarating journey of entrepreneurship, where every decision carries weight and uncertainty lurks around every corner, a unique trait emerges as the cornerstone of success: confident humility. This delicate balance of self-assurance and openness to learning is a personal attribute and a guiding principle that can transform startup cultures and propel ventures to new heights. At its core, confident humility embodies a mindset that embraces both conviction and curiosity. It is the recognition that while one may possess expertise and vision, there is always room for growth and refinement. MORE FOR YOU WWE Raw Results, Winners And Grades On May 13, 2024 The Risk Of Losing Big On GameStop And Other Meme Stocks Netflix Sets ‘That ‘90s Show’ Part 2 And 3 Premiere Dates The authors are two Google leaders who draw on their extensive experience working with startup teams to showcase the transformative power of confident humility in action. Their new book, The Bonfire Moment, underscores the path to confident humility in the high-stakes world of startups. Aim for “confident humility” the authors share, the idea that you should learn “how to feel confident in your mission and your team’s ability to achieve it, while embracing hard feedback about your strengths and weaknesses.” Learn to celebrate other people’s success without feeling threated by their brilliance. Gonzalez and Yellin offer a toolkit for cultivating confident humility within startup ecosystems. Through a blend of research-backed insights and practical strategies, Gonzalez and Yellin offer a roadmap for founders to foster a culture of openness, collaboration, and resilience. From fostering psychological safety to promoting a growth mindset, the book equips entrepreneurs with the tools they need to build teams that thrive in the face of adversity. C.S. Lewis is credited with saying that people who are humble, don’t think less of themselves, they just think of themselves less. It’s less about me, and more about us. Catalyst for innovation and growth Central to the authors’ thesis is the notion that confident humility is not a sign of weakness but a catalyst for innovation and growth. By creating an environment where diverse perspectives are valued and constructive feedback is embraced, startups can harness their teams’ collective intelligence to overcome challenges and seize opportunities. Rather than prescribing one-size-fits-all solutions, Gonzalez and Yellin encourage readers to adapt their approach to fit the unique needs of their teams and organizations. This flexibility, makes it a valuable resource for startup founders at all stages of their journey. “Most startups fail not because of a bad product, poor timing, or mismanaged cash, but because of people problems: conflicts over strategy, decision-making, and team culture,” share Gonzalez and Yellin. The Bonfire Moment layes out a blueprint outlining how to build the right high performance teams for your start up. Follow me on Twitter or LinkedIn. Check out my website or some of my other work here. Dr. Ruth Gotian Following Editorial Standards Print Reprints & Permissions

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