The CW’s latest series has now officially met its end. On Thursday, it was announced that the network has cancelled Tom Swift, its adaptation of the long-running book series of the same name, less than a month after the series’ May 31st premiere. Only five episodes of the show, which originated as a spinoff of the network’s Nancy Drew series, have aired thus far. According to reports, The CW executives reportedly liked Tom Swift from a creative standpoint, but were unhappy with the show’s ratings, as it averaged only 535K viewers in Live+7, as well as on streaming. CBS Studios is hoping to extend the options of its series cast, and potentially shop the series to other networks or platforms.
Tom Swift marks the latest in a surprising string of shows cancelled by The CW this season, including DC entries Naomi, Batwoman, and Legends of Tomorrow, as well as In the Dark, the Vampire Diaries spinoff Legacies, and the network’s reboots of Charmed, Dynasty, 4400, and Roswell, New Mexico. This news comes amid recent reports indicating that majority share in The CW could be sold to Nexstar Media Group, raising questions about how the network’s programming could pivot towards a potential older demographic.
Tom Swift follows the serialized adventures of its titular character (Tian Richards), an exceptionally brilliant inventor with unlimited resources and unimaginable wealth who is thrust into a world of sci-fi conspiracy and unexplained phenomena after the shocking disappearance of his father. Tom takes to the road on a quest to unravel the truth, leaving behind the comforts of his usual moneyed lifestyle while fighting to stay one step ahead of an Illuminati-scale group that’s hellbent on stopping him. The series stars Ashleigh Murray (Riverdale, Katy Keene) as Tom’s best friend Zenzi, Marquise Vilsón (The Kitchen, Blindspot) as Tom’s bodyguard Isaac, and April Parker Jones (Supergirl, Bel-Air) as Tom’s mom Lorraine.
The Tom Swift series is written and executive produced by Nancy Drew showrunner Melina Hsu Taylor and co-creator Noga Landau, who co-created the series with Empire‘s Cameron Johnson. The project also hails from Nancy Drew producers Josh Schwartz and Stephanie Savage.
“They’re such different shows. Nancy Drew is about a bunch of kids in a small town in Maine, solving ghost stories in a crab shack. And this show is about billionaires and people who build rocket ships and go to space,” Landau said during a recent press conference for the show. “So, they’re so different but I think what links them together is how earnest they are and funny. And at their core, they’re kind of about similar issues of claiming your own identity and growing up and figuring out who you are in relation to your family and your parents and the secrets you carry with you. It’s there. There’s similarities for sure but they’re definitely their own things at this point.”
The Tom Swift book series first began to be published in 1910, and encompasses more than 100 volumes. The books have been translated into many languages and have sold more than 30 million copies worldwide. There have been multiple attempts to adapt Tom Swift into live-action, with the only successful adaptation being a 1983 television special, The Tom Swift and Linda Craig Mystery Hour.
Pakistan Navy rescues 9 crew members from sinking Indian ship near Gwadar
The Pakistan Navy on Wednesday saved nine crew members from an Indian ship after it drowned in the Arabian Sea near Gwadar, according to the Director General of Public Relations.
The ship named “Jamna Sagar” sank with 10 crew members on board on Tuesday (Aug 9), the navy spokesman said in a statement.
“The navy immediately responded to the distress call and the Pakistan Maritime Information Center requested a nearby merchant ship ‘MT KRUIBEKE’ to provide necessary assistance to the stranded crew of the drowning sailboat,” the spokesman said.
“The merchant ship eventually recovered nine crew members and continued the voyage to its next port of call Dubai and then disembarked the crew.”
Separately, the statement said a Pakistan Navy ship, along with two helicopters, arrived in the area and located the body of a crew member who had gone missing when the ship drowned.
His body was recovered and handed over to Pakistan Maritime Safety Agency (PMSA) authorities for further proceedings, he added.
Earlier this year, the Pakistan Navy intercepted and tracked an Indian submarine.
In a statement, the Director General of Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR), Maj. Gen. Babar Iftikhar said that the Indian Navy had deployed its submarine against Pakistan with “ulterior motives“.
Pakistan Navy rescues nine crew members from sinking ship in India
A PN ship, along with two helicopters, arrived in the area and located the body of a crew member, according to a statement.
The Pakistan Navy on Wednesday saved nine crew members from an Indian ship after it drowned in the Arabian Sea near Gwadar, according to a statement issued by the Director General of Public Relations (Navy) on Thursday.
The ship ‘Jamna Sagar’ sank with 10 crew members on board on Tuesday (Aug 9), the navy spokesman said in the statement.
“The navy immediately responded to the distress call and the Pakistan Maritime Information Center requested a nearby merchant ship ‘MT KRUIBEKE’ to provide necessary assistance to the stranded crew of the drowning sailing ship,” the spokesman added.
“The merchant ship eventually recovered nine crew members and continued the voyage to its next port of call Dubai and then disembarked the crew.”
The statement added that a Pakistan Navy ship, along with two helicopters, arrived in the area and located the body of a crew member who had gone missing when the ship drowned.
Ukrainian-born GOP lawmaker rankles colleagues with her aggressive criticism of Kyiv
When a bipartisan group of lawmakers visited the Ukraine border in March, an unexpected guest showed up on the trip: GOP Rep. Victoria Spartz of Indiana.
Members of both parties push to tone down posture
Concerns about Spartz abroad
A closer look at the House Republicans who broke ranks for the marriage bill
History was made last month when 47 House Republicans joined all Democrats in passing legislation that would federally protect same-sex marriages and roll back a 25-year-old law that defines marriage in the United States as between one man and one woman.
While an overwhelming majority of the House GOP conference opposed the Respect for Marriage Act — which would also protect interracial marriages — the bipartisan support was considered significant when Congress remains bitterly polarized over many issues. Many in the supportive group of Republicans are retiring or represent districts in Democrats’ sights in the midterms.
How incumbent Republicans voted on the bill
The vote caused Senate Democrats to spring into action, working to find 10 Republicans who could overcome the 60-vote threshold needed for passage in the chamber after leaders initially expressed doubt such legislation could garner support from across the aisle.
It remains in question, however, whether Senate Republicans would follow the green-lit argument of their House colleagues — that supporting the legislation is rooted in principles found in the Constitution. So far, five Republican senators — Susan Collins (Maine), Thom Tillis (N.C.), Lisa Murkowski (Alaska), Ron Johnson (Wis.) and Rob Portman (Ohio), whose son is gay — have said they would support the legislation. Five more are needed to overcome the filibuster-proof 60-vote threshold.
It’s likely those trying to find the necessary support will have time to do so. The Senate adjourned Sunday, making it more likely such legislation could be considered as early as September.
But the unexpected bipartisan support in the House shows how quickly same-sex marriage has become widely accepted in the past decade, including on Capitol Hill, even as the Republican Party remains highly critical of other aspects of the LGBTQ community. And though the Supreme Court officially declared same-sex marriage settled law in the 2015 case Obergefell v. Hodges, Democrats felt the onus to ensure such rights are federally codified to prevent any challenges to such protections in the future.
The bill’s passage also slightly marred House Democrats attempts to paint all Republicans, including vulnerable lawmakers in swing districts, as extremists who would support rolling back such protections. That fear was raised after Justice Clarence Thomas openly questioned whether the court “should reconsider” rulings that guaranteed access to birth control and same-sex couples’ right to marriage in his concurrence to the Supreme Court ruling that overturned federal abortion protections in Roe v. Wade.
Of the 47 House Republicans who voted in favor of the same-sex marriage legislation, 24 are on the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee’s list of seats to target in the midterms. But only a handful represent true swing districts according to the Cook Political Report with Amy Walter’s ratings, given that polling continues to show Republicans are more likely to regain the House majority. They only need to net five seats from Democrats to do so.
8 who support the bill are leaving
14 who oppose are leaving
3 who did not vote are leaving
Some Republican “yes” votes can be explained based on the large LGBTQ communities within their district. For example, all three Republicans in the Miami-area supported the measure, including Rep. Maria Elvira Salazar who represents a Democratic-leaning district.
Largely all Republicans who voted in favor of the legislation said they believe marriage is settled law based on the Equal Protection Clause of the 14th Amendment.
“I know that this is the right vote because it is the constitutional vote and we need to protect equal rights for every single American,” Rep. Kat Cammack (R-Fla.) said in an interview.
Rep. Nancy Mace (R-S.C.) was more blunt moments after the bill passed in the House, tweeting, “I’m a big fan of marriage, having done it a few times. And if gay couples want to be as happily or miserably married as straight couples, more power to them.”
Retiring members are often considered the first ones to buck the party on a divisive issue, given they no longer live in fear of retribution from voters. But only four Republican lawmakers did so on marriage equality, while another 17 who are leaving voted against it. Most of the 17 come from extremely conservative districts. Others are running for Senate in conservative states where such a vote could hurt them politically.
Rep. John Katko (R-N.Y.), who voted in support of marriage equality and is retiring, observed that politics often leads “people try to fashion arguments that suit their vote instead of looking at the bill itself,” preventing them from taking a stand on issues that are settled law.
There were still some surprising votes from Republicans who would be expected to vote based on how conservative their district is. Rep. Liz Cheney (R-Wyo.), for example, has long had one of the most conservative voting records in the House, before she began frequently rebuking former president Donald Trump. But her vote in support for marriage equality was personal, explaining last year that she was “wrong” to have been against same-sex marriage and had since reversed course in support of her sister who is a lesbian.
GOP Conference Chair Elise Stefanik (R-N.Y.) and National Republican Congressional Committee Chair Rep. Tom Emmer (R-Minn.), both of whom represent safe Republican districts, also broke ranks with Republican leadership, voting in favor of the legislation.
Still, roughly 80 percent of the GOP conference voted against the legislation. Even so, it was difficult to find Republicans who were opposed to the principle of marriage equality itself, largely pinning their dissent on objecting to Democrats quickly ushering the bill onto the floor without committee consideration or Republican input. Others found it unnecessary to vote on legislation the Supreme Court already ruled as federally protected.
Rep. Brian Mast (R-Fla.) understood most of his colleagues voted against the legislation out of frustration at Democrats “absolute bull—- process” of putting the bill on the floor without much time for consideration.
“But, you know, for pretty much every Republican that I’ve spoken to — whether they vote in favor for it or not — same thing as me, I could give a rat’s caboose who somebody marries, relates with, falls in love with, anything else as a piece of it, their gender or anything else,” he said. “I wasn’t going to get mixed up in the politics of it.”
Right wing U.S. sheriffs vow to probe 2020 voter fraud claims
July 20 (Reuters) – A coalition of rightwing “constitutional sheriffs,” who claim legal power in their jurisdictions that exceeds U.S. federal and state authorities, has a new calling: investigating conspiracy theories that the 2020 election was rigged against former President Donald Trump.
The Constitutional Sheriffs and Peace Officers Association has teamed with True the Vote, a Texas nonprofit and purveyor of debunked voter-fraud claims, to recruit like-minded sheriffs nationwide to investigate 2020 stolen-election allegations and to more aggressively police future voting.
The partnership, detailed last week at the association’s annual gathering in Las Vegas, aims to intensify a movement already underway. At least four ideologically aligned county sheriffs in Michigan, Wisconsin, Kansas and Arizona have launched election-fraud probes since the 2020 vote. None has established evidence of systemic fraud.
“This is our top priority. It’s our duty,” Richard Mack, founder of the constitutional sheriffs organization, told Reuters in an interview at the Las Vegas meeting. Mack also touted the True the Vote partnership later in the week at FreedomFest, a national gathering of libertarian-leaning thinkers and political figures, where he urged that sheriffs “join us in this holy cause.”
Election officials are raising concerns that partisan investigations by sheriffs into baseless voter-fraud claims could undermine public confidence in elections. In an interview, Michigan Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson, a Democrat, called such probes part of a “nationally coordinated effort to dismantle democracy through lies and misinformation, and through people misusing or abusing their authority.”
False fraud claims have also sparked a wave of threats against election administrators, including more than 900 hostile messages documented by Reuters, along with at least 17 attempts to illegally access voting equipment in search of evidence to prove election-rigging.
Officials with True the Vote said at the constitutional sheriffs’ meeting that they plan to raise money to provide grants and equipment to help sheriffs investigate 2020 voter-fraud claims and expand surveillance of ballot drop boxes in future elections. Trump supporters have alleged, without evidence, that drop boxes enabled the mass collection of fraudulent votes in the presidential election.
While election fraud is exceedingly rare, some states with Republican-controlled legislatures have passed new laws in response to the false rigged-election claims. Nine states have banned drop boxes or restricted their distribution since the 2020 vote, according to a recent report by the Voting Rights Lab, which monitors state election policies. Other states have enacted more stringent voter-registration requirements. In Florida and Georgia, lawmakers expanded the powers of law enforcement to police election-law violations.
The constitutional sheriffs’ new focus on probing elections illustrates how Trump’s voter-fraud falsehoods have found a receptive audience in some corners of law enforcement.
Leaders of the movement touted the recent documentary “2000 Mules” as they gathered in Las Vegas. The movie, based on cell-phone tracking data and surveillance video obtained by True the Vote, alleges that Democratic operatives stuffed drop boxes with fraudulent ballots in key counties to deliver the presidency to Democrat Joe Biden.
“2000 Mules has presented overwhelming evidence,” said Mack, urging sheriffs to investigate its fraud claims. “It cannot not be dismissed.”
Many Democratic and Republican officials, along with independent fact-checkers, have in fact dismissed the movie as misleading and its evidence as flimsy.
The constitutional sheriffs’ association promotes an extreme view of sheriffs’ legal authority, asserting on its website that their power in their jurisdictions exceeds that of any other official and “even supersedes the powers of the President.”
It’s rare for sheriffs to investigate voting irregularities, especially without a request from election officials. They generally handle criminal law enforcement in jurisdictions that lack a police force and manage local jails, among other duties.
True the Vote founder Catherine Engelbrecht said at the Las Vegas meeting that sheriffs are the best hope for pursuing rigged-election claims because other agencies, including the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), have dismissed its allegations.
“It’s like the lights went on,” she said. “It’s the sheriffs: that’s who can do these investigations; that’s who we can trust; that’s who we can turn over information to.”
The FBI did not respond to a request for comment.
Mack, who founded the constitutional sheriffs association in 2011, is a former county sheriff in Arizona. He served until 2016 as a board member of the Oath Keepers, an anti-government militia that includes several members charged with helping to organize the Jan. 6 U.S. Capitol attack. Mack told Reuters that he left the Oath Keepers when the organization became too militant, but extremism researchers have documented ongoing ties between his association and the militia group.
True the Vote’s coalition also includes another right-leaning sheriffs’ group, Protect America Now, led by Sheriff Mark Lamb of Pinal County, Arizona. That group describes its mission as “standing for our constitution” by guarding against government overreach, protecting gun-owner rights and stopping illegal immigration.
True the Vote officials described the coalition as a multi-faceted effort to encourage sheriffs to pursue election-fraud claims. In addition to grants meant to help sheriffs conduct surveillance of drop boxes, the group said it aims to provide sheriffs with “artificial intelligence” software to assist in analyzing the video they collect. True the Vote also plans to set up hotlines to alert sheriffs to suspicious activity at polling stations and ballot drop boxes.
It’s unclear how many of the nation’s sheriffs will join the effort. The constitutional sheriffs association does not disclose membership numbers; Protect America Now says it includes about 70 sheriffs from more than 30 states.
Political Research Associates, a left-leaning think tank that studies political extremism, has identified 136 sheriffs who align with the so-called patriot movement, which includes constitutional sheriffs and others embracing anti-government or far-right conspiracy theories.
The National Sheriffs Association, the nation’s leading professional organization for sheriffs, did not respond to requests for comment on the effort to pursue election-fraud allegations.
Calvin Hayden, sheriff of Johnson County, Kansas, told the Las Vegas gathering that he plans to employ technology to expand his investigation.
“We’re going to start doing our geodata,” Hayden said. “I have no question that we’re going to get to the bottom of this.”
Hayden launched the probe last year despite repeated assurances from county and state election officials that the vote had been conducted fairly. Asked what evidence justified the probe, a spokesperson for Hayden’s office, Shelby Colburn, said the investigation was based on more than 200 tips from voters and that the sheriff would soon provide more details.
Hayden’s efforts were praised by Mack, who told meeting attendees that election fraud had become the constitutional sheriff’s association’s “biggest concern.” He said his members are uniquely positioned to pursue the matter because sheriffs “don’t have to ask permission from anybody to start an investigation.”
The Boys Season 4 Starts Filming Soon Reveals Karl Urban
We’ve barely recovered from Herogasm and Season 3 of The Boys still has two more episodes to air, but star Karl Urban has already revealed that The Boys Season 4 is set to start shooting soon. In an exclusive interview with Collider’s Steven Weintraub for Netflix’s animated film The Sea Beast, Urban shared when The Boys will be getting back together:
During the first two seasons of The Boys, we’ve followed Urban’s Billy Butcher as he formed a team to hunt down Homelander, the most powerful superhero on Earth. The team acts in the underground, trying to survive against unlikely odds and using only their wits to get the best of superpowered people with all sorts of special abilities. In Season 3, however, The Boys went official and became a government unit responsible for keeping superheroes on their toes. The change of status quo has led to a thrilling season so far, with many surprises in store for fans, including The Boys getting their own superpowers. Oh, and we also had a huge superhero orgy known as Herogasm.
Of course, we are all excited to learn what comes next for the team, however, Urban still hasn’t even touched the scripts for The Boys Season 4. As he explains:
It’s too bad we won’t know what happens in Season 4 for a while, but with production starting so soon, I think it’s a safe bet that we can expect The Boys Season 4 to be streaming on Prime Video next year. For now, we still get to know how Season 3 ends. So far, the balance between The Boys and the Seven is hanging by a thread, as Homelander becomes ever more erratic and Butcher does everything in his power to get his revenge on the superhero while still working inside the boundaries of the Law.
When Are the New ‘Stranger Things’ Season 4 Episodes Released in Your Time Zone?
Season 4 part 2 is almost here.
Stranger Things fans have prayer circles ready for their favourite characters ahead of the season 4 finale
Stranger Things day is finally here and it’s getting tense in here! Twitter is out with prayer circles hoping to keep their favourite characters alive and simultaneously threatening the creators, the Duffer brothers to watch out if any of those precious characters don’t make it.
The producers left a month-long gap between the first seven episodes of the fourth season and the two-episode finale. Whether this gap was for the fandom to emotionally prepare itself for the twists and turns or for heightened anticipation to spike viewership, we don’t know but we can’t wait to find out!
Season 4 dropped on May 27 and all we’ve done is count down days to July 1 for the finale and with less than an hour to go, Twitter users can’t help but pray for their favourite characters as they count down minutes to the end.
Same boat, friend.
Pakistani fans have got their post-Friday prayer biryani date with the finale scheduled.
Steve is alive — for now.
Duffer brothers, please be careful with how you choose to proceed with this season.
To be honest, it’s us…
Who do you think won’t make it beyond season 4?
New Jersey’s Apostille Service: Brief Guide
The state of New Jersey along with its capital Trenton and most populous city, Newark, is located in the Northwest region of the country and requests monthly more than 250 apostilles of documents.
Isn’t That Number Low?
Not at all! An apostille isn’t a service required often.
An apostille is a type of authentication you receive for a document, which makes it legal in another country.
Thus, when you do get an apostille in New Jersey Apostille Service, you’re submitting (non-American) documents. You then await authentication for legal use.
However, not all countries accept apostille documents. Only countries that have participated in the 1961 Hague Convention operate by that system.
The US State Department provides a list of nations that take apostilles. You can check that list for reference.
Who Provides the Service?
The Secretary of State’s office does. They provide the authentication to citizens and foreign nations, letting them use the documents overseas.
That authentication applies to many documents, which include:
- Corporate documents (articles of incorporation, company bylaws, power of attorney, etc.)
- Diplomas, home studies, or letters that relate to degrees
- Job certification and references
- Marital status documents
- Adoption papers
- Distributorship agreements
For more details on documents, and authentications are available, you can check the US State Department website.
Apostilling Documents in NJ – Requirements
You’ll need to fulfill the requirements below to legalize documents in New Jersey. Also, below is a list of each document that may be apostilled.
First – Original Documents
Normally, you’ll need to bring the original document for an apostille certification. But, you may also bring a duplicate provided by the state.
Also, the document should have:
- An appropriate signature
- Be recently issued
If those requirements are available, the apostille process should be complete within 4-10 business days.
Also, New Jersey may apostille private and public documents under the following conditions:
- For New Jersey Vital Records, certified copies must be provided by the Office of Vital Statistics and the registry
- For Vital Records (such as marriage, birth, and death certification), the original should be certified through the Public Official
(Important Note): Any marriage, death, or birth certificate starting in 1901 should be provided by New Jersey’s Department of Health, specifically the Bureau of Vital Statistics.
Second – Scanned Photocopies of Original Documents
You’ll need to ensure the following conditions are met:
- An appropriate signature isn’t provided
- Proof that the original document is damaged
- The issuance date of the original document was 10+ years ago
- A country that’ll receive documents accepts apostilles of scanned photocopies from original documents. Most countries do accept such documents
- The apostille can be done in as little as 24 hours
Need to Get A Document Apostilled?
Chances are, you haven’t apostilled a document before. If you have, it’s not something you’ll do more than once every few years.
In that case, be sure to contact a professional service for help. NJ Notary Group is one to try, and will help you finish the process in record time!
With NJ Notary Group, you’ll get an efficient service that’ll save you time, money, and unnecessary headaches!
The Benefits of a Mini Zen Garden and How to Create One, According to Jennifer Miree Cope
Are you looking for a green focus to bring some peace to your life? A mini zen garden may be the solution you seek. Jennifer Miree Cope explains how to make a mini zen garden and how it can help you achieve zen and relieve stress.
What Is a Mini Zen Garden?
Zen gardens come from ancient Japanese gardening culture. Sometimes called rock gardens, their key features are raked sand, carefully placed rocks, and precisely sculpted greenery.
Most Zen gardens emphasize naturalness and simplicity and are intended to provide a sanctified place for people to meditate and find peace. Mini Zen gardens can vary in size, but many of them are small enough to fit on a tabletop.
Benefits of a Mini Zen Garden
A major feature of mini Zen gardens is sand that you can rake in a pattern. Many people find tranquility in sand raking, even if only for a few minutes a day. Spending time sand raking or even practicing mindfulness at the mini zen garden has many benefits, including promoting relaxation and relieving stress.
Increase Mindfulness. In today’s world of constant connectedness, being mindful is becoming more difficult. Taking a moment or two every day at your mini Zen garden to meditate or simply focus on something other than the stresses of everyday life gives your mind the rest it needs.
Relaxation. Some people only seek relaxation every now and then through a massage, bath, or another routine. A mini Zen garden can bring daily relaxation into your life. Raking sand or spending time by the garden is a great way to relax in the middle of the day or before bedtime.
Stress Relief. Mini Zen gardens are designed to promote relaxation and peace, two things critical to minimizing stress. If you find yourself wanting to decrease your stress levels, a mini Zen garden is a great way to bring daily stress relief into your life.
How to Create Your Own Mini Zen Garden
Zen gardens may seem complicated and skillfully designed. But as Jennifer Miree Cope explains, creating your own is easier than you may think.
The first step is collecting the materials required, including sand, pebbles or rocks, a rake box, and plants. You can source these items from your local home and garden store or even collect rocks from the beach or outdoors.
The next step is creating the sand base. Your rake box should be mostly covered in sand, creating plenty of room for daily raking. You can also add an essential oil of your choosing to the sand, which can help promote relaxation.
Place the pebbles and plants. There is no right or wrong way to organize your mini Zen garden. Just make sure not to place your plants or rocks in a way that makes it difficult to rake the sand. You can also experiment with decorative pieces to make your Zen garden stand out.
More About Jennifer Miree Cope
Jennifer Miree Cope is a landscape designer well known for her passion and thoughtful organization. In addition to her landscaping career, she is also an avid volunteer and contributes to several charitable organizations. She enjoys relaxing with her husband and two sons, walking her dog, and hiking in the North Carolina mountains.
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