Squiz Today / 11 September 2020

Squiz Today – Friday, 11 September


“Naked bike shorts”

Are apparently a thing. No. Just no…


Along the east coast of our nation’s mainland, there was not a state premier to be found who wasn’t under pressure yesterday. Concerns over coronavirus restrictions occupied Queensland’s Annastacia Palaszczuk and Victoria’s Daniel Andrews. Meanwhile, NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian's political partnership was falling apart.

Sarah Caisip’s case was front and centre yesterday. Caisip, a 26yo nurse working in Canberra, is in quarantine in Brissie having travelled there to see her father before he died. Sadly, he died before her quarantine period ended. And when the state’s health officials would not allow her to attend his funeral yesterday, her case was taken up by PM Scott Morrison who picked up the phone to Premier Palaszczuk to appeal for an urgent exemption. Palaszczuk didn't appreciate the call, and said she would not be bullied into changing the state’s border rules. And it brought the PM a bit unstuck on radio yesterday as he talked about the importance of being with family when a parent dies. Reports say there have been dozens of these sorts of difficult cases. And in Victoria, Andrews spent the day defending Melbourne’s night-time curfew after both the police commissioner and chief medical officer confirmed it was not based on their advice. The curfew has been a hot issue during the Stage 4 lockdown because it’s a significant curbing of people’s freedoms. And it’s galling to many because the government has not provided evidence the measure is an effective way to stop the spread of the virus.

Western Oz had the Emu War of 1932. But this is the Koala War of 2020 with John Barilaro, the leader of the Nationals/Deputy Premier in NSW, yesterday delivering Premier Gladys Berejiklian an ultimatum. Either she dumps a new environmental planning policy which assesses if koalas would be harmed if land was cleared, or he would pretty much dissolve the Coalition agreement - but retain their 7 ministries. The Premier had a request of her own last night - either the Nationals forget they ever said that or they would be sacked from her frontbench. The Nationals - who say the policy severely limits how property owners manage their land - have until 9am this morning to decide. After a series of crisis meetings yesterday, Barilaro and his team will meet again this morning to decide their position. Setting the alarm…



…is the world’s wildlife. According to a new report by conservation group World Wildlife Fund (WWF), wildlife populations are in “catastrophic decline”, falling by more than two-thirds the last 50 years. The report found that on average, more than 20,000 populations of mammals, birds, amphibians, reptiles and fish around the world have declined by 68% since 1970. WWF boss Tanya Steele said the “freefall” was due to increased human activity including pollution, land clearing and overfishing. “Now nature is sending us a desperate SOS and time is running out." On a happier note, another recent global study has boosted hopes for conservation efforts, finding 48 species have been saved from extinction since 1993. Next week, the United Nations’ Global Biodiversity Outlook report will tell us whether global conservation targets agreed in 2010 have been met.


Two men whose boat went missing off the South Oz coast last week have been found “in good spirits” after a 4-day search. Police said Derek Robinson (48yo) and Tony Higgins (57yo) departed Coffin Bay on Thursday last week, heading towards Goolwa. But the next day, the pair contacted a friend to say they were diverting to Kangaroo Island due to propeller trouble, and they were reported missing 2 days later. Just hours after the state’s largest search effort in history - involving the Australian Maritime Safety Authority and the Royal Australian Air Force - was called off on Wednesday, the men managed to get in touch with authorities. They say they were unaware of the massive search for them, and they didn't consider themselves lost. While Robinson has been reunited with his worried family, Higgins stayed on board to fix the pump. "He's gotta stop it from sinking I guess," Robinson said.


And not in a good way… It’s a familiar tone of orange to many Aussies, and yesterday millions of Americans woke up to an eerie glow and falling ash as fires continue to burn across the region. While the true scale of the destruction is yet to be confirmed, Oregon has been badly affected by “unprecedented” fires this week. Strong winds and hot conditions have destroyed five small towns and killed at least 2 people. "This could be the greatest loss in human lives and property due to wildfire in our state's history," Governor Kate Brown warned. In California, fires have killed 3 more people, bringing the state’s death toll to at least 11. And in nearby Washington state, hundreds of homes have been destroyed with fires there burning through more land on Monday alone than they did during the previous 12 fire seasons. You can check out some of the snaps here.


A $172 million loss for its 2019-20 financial year will do that, particularly when the value of your entire business is $172.5 million... The poor result sliced 17.65% off the department store’s share price yesterday with investors unimpressed that it was unable to replicate the success retailers like JB Hi-Fi and Harvey Norman saw in their results during the coronavirus crisis. But Myer says widespread store closures due to COVID-19 and underlying challenges in fashion retailing has turned profit into a loss. One super unimpressed man was Solomon Lew. He owns more than 10% of Myer’s shares, and he resumed his call for the board to go. The result was "disastrous and shameful," he said.


From The Avengers to Game of Thrones, on the screen to the theatre, Diana Rigg has been remembered as someone who “lived the hell out of everyone”. Her professional work is extensive and notable. She was the only woman to have married James Bond. And there were numerous tributes to her technical skill as a great classical actor. Meanwhile, Stephen Merchant remembered her as a “great actress and good sport - lest we forget, she let Daniel Radcliffe flick a condom on her head in Extras.” The technical term for that is ‘range’… Those close to her remembered her as a “force of nature who loved her work and her fellow actors." She was 82yo and died at home this week after she was diagnosed with cancer in March.


With the 20th anniversary of the kick-off of the Sydney Olympics next week, Greig Pickhaver (aka HG Nelson) wrote a piece in Tuesday’s The Age/Sydney Morning Herald about what made it special. And one enduring memory for many would be the evening show he put together with John Doyle (aka Roy Slaven). Here they talk about what made The Dream a hit. And we agree, the synchronised swimming retelling of the construction of the Sydney Harbour Bridge was a standout…

Looking for a fun way to date yourself? As in check your vintage, not take yourself out somewhere romantic. The IKEA Museum can help with that.

Ok, enough’s enough. We’re determined to wake up from our pasta-induced coma this weekend with some jazzy flavours. Weave your magic, fish tacos.


ABS Data Release - Overseas Arrivals and Departures, July

Braveheart’s White Balloon Day for child protection advocacy

A court hearing for the four former police officers facing charges over the death of George Floyd - Minneapolis

Anniversary of:
• Enid Blyton publishing the first of her Famous Five children's novels, which went on to become one of the best-selling children's series ever with over 100 million sold (1942)
• the release of the Atari 2600 video game console, which revolutionised the video game industry (1977)
• the last known smallpox death - that of medical photographer Janet Parker who was infected in a British lab (1978)
• 19th anniversary of the terrorist attacks on New York’s World Trade Centre and the Pentagon in Washington DC killing 2,996 (2001)

World First Aid Day

National Health and Physical Education Day

Birthdays for author Michael Ondaatje (1943) and composer Hans Zimmer (1957)

Anniversary of:
• the marriage of John F. Kennedy and Jacqueline Bouvier (1953)
• the premiere of The Smurfs (1981)
• the collapse of Ansett Australia (2001)
• the disappearance of 3yo William Tyrrell from Kendall, NSW (2014)

International Crochet Day

Birthdays for former cricketer Shane Warne (1969) and designer Stella McCartney (1971)

Anniversary of:
• the Swiss inventor George de Mestral granted a patent for Velcro (1955)
• the premiere of Scooby-Doo (1969)
• the release of Nintendo's first ever Super Mario Bros game (1985)
• the premiere of Law and Order (1990)
• the birthday of Roald Dahl (1916)

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