Squiz Today / 04 August 2017

Squiz Today – Friday, 4 August


“Attention: Animals lives are their right. Killing them is violent and unjust, no matter how it’s done.”

After months of protests from animal welfare activists, The Local Butcher Shop in Berkeley, California agreed to hang this sign in its window to get some peace. "I have a lot to say about it, but I don't want to give any more attention to it because it's what the protesters want," said business owner Aaron Rocchino. #reluctant


The wall of noise has only gotten louder from within Coalition ranks on the vexed issue of legalising same-sex marriage. Brace yourself ‘cos there’s going to be more talk of this over the weekend as government members pre-position ahead of Parliament returning next week. Remember: this came to a head when WA Senator Dean Smith said he intends to put a private members bill (which any MP or Senator can do - it doesn’t require the formal endorsement of their party) before the Parliament in coming weeks. Cue meltdown.

To summarise:

- There have been threats - from the Queensland Liberal National Party big-wigs warning MPs not to cross the floor to support it. And from Nationals backbencher Andrew Broad who is said to be set on leaving the party if they dishonour the election commitment to resolve the question by plebiscite.

- There have been new resolutions suggested – one involves holding a secret ballot in the party room to get a proper read on what members really think on the plebiscite v conscience vote question. Another is that ‘the people’ be polled via a non-compulsory postal vote instead of a compulsory plebiscite – the theory is pollies would see what their electorates think and vote accordingly.

- And there is crankiness – directed towards each other, and towards Turnbull. Former PM Tony Abbott hasn't missed the opportunity to point out that Turnbull's credibility as leader is at stake if MPs cross the floor in defiance of the party's position. And then there’s the media – Tim Wilson’s 29-second interview on Sky yesterday = ouch.

You mean other than a lot of people screeching all weekend long? The good news is a meeting for the Liberal Party to thrash it about will take place on Monday afternoon (brought forward from Tuesday). The outcome will then be discussed in a joint meeting with the Nationals on Tuesday. In the meantime, Labor leader Bill Shorten is landing genuine zingers like this; “What I think Australians really dislike about politics is that they know their politicians believe in things, but the politicians are sometimes too timid, too weak, to back in their beliefs.” He’s referring to Turnbull’s personal support for same-sex marriage there… boom. One thing’s for sure – they need a Scaramucci style communications plan. So strap yourself in and bring on Monday! Or continue to let it all wash over you. Whatever works.


New details are coming to light about the thwarted terror plot that saw four men arrested last weekend. Charges were laid against two men (brothers) overnight and another remains in custody (a fourth man was released earlier this week). Reports last night said that someone tried to check-in luggage containing the explosive device for an Etihad flight from Sydney to Abu Dhabi. The man was stopped because the bag was too heavy (don’t you hate that…). Details have not been confirmed on who attempted to execute the plan or exactly when this occurred. PM Turnbull said he expects security arrangements to return to normal soon (ie no need to turn up to domestic flight two hours before flight time) following advice from ASIO that there was no longer an active threat.

Tammy Davis-Charles, an Australian nurse, has been jailed in Cambodia for 18-months over her role in sourcing clients for a surrogacy clinic. She was arrested just weeks after authorities moved to ban commercial surrogacy in November last year. Authorities said the clinics charged up to $50,000 for each ‘request’ with local surrogates receiving about $10,000 for each pregnancy. With surrogacy now banned in Thailand and Cambodia, the trade has moved to Laos where it is not yet illegal.

Laurie Oakes has been described as the doyen of the Canberra Parliamentary Press Gallery and has been its reference point for political reporting for decades, most recently as Nine’s political editor. But his focus was always outside of the Canberra bubble and into the homes of millions of Australians as the most trusted voice on politics. Announcing his retirement, Oakes reflected that Whitlam was the PM who changed the country the most (but was bad at politics), Bob Hawke and John Howard were the most effective and Billy McMahon was the worst. As for politics today – it’s a mess, he said, making it easier to leave. A real shame - we can imagine the fun he would have had with the transcript that is out today of Turnbull’s ill-fated phone call with US President Donald Trump… Fun fact: Oakes provided Tony Abbott with a reference for his pre-selection as the Liberal candidate in the Warringah by-election in 1994. So technically he’s to partly to blame. #justjokes

Like a googly to the… inner thigh, the pay dispute between the game’s professional players and administrators has been both tricky and bruising. After a ten-month and very public process, an agreement was struck yesterday that both sides say they have compromised to reach. The fight was about players wanting to keep a revenue sharing arrangement while Cricket Australia wanted to shift them onto fixed salaries. Seems the players have won - they’ve settled on a 30% share of revenue which nets about $500 million over the next five years. And the professional women players get a substantial pay rise out of it too. Importantly for cricket fans, it means the Ashes clash against England at the end of this year will go ahead.

Picture this – Dame Helen Mirren, brand ambassador for beauty giant L’Oreal, is making a public appearance to plug their products when she drops this bomb; “I know that when I put my moisturiser on it probably does f--- all, but it just makes me feel better.” At 72yo, Mirren is their oldest (and probably most outspoken) face and has insisted her wrinkles not be digitally erased in her ads. She’s often spoken about her discomfort with stardom, but she seems to be coming around. When asked at the same press conference this week if she’s sold out she replied; “Yes, I do in many ways. But, I may add, blissfully and quite happily.” Just love her.

Got the mid-winter blues? We’ve found the antidote – corgi races! You heard that right and it features cutie-hounds named Wigglebutt, Sir Pendleton and Tedford Woofington. We recommend watching all 20 minutes, but if you can’t make that sort of commitment go to the 18min mark you’ll see the final. Cannot. Stop. Giggling.

If you’re anything like us you like a good pen. Given we spend almost all day on a keyboard, we want any note jotting to be top-notch. Anyway, this 11 Best Pens on Amazon, According to Hyperenthusiastic Reviewers gave us some new options – we’ve put in an order for 1.0mm uni-ball Jetstream Ballpoint. Is any of that too weird?

Tracksuits are back, Da Ali G stlye. Here are some options the experts say are cool. You first…


ABS Data Release - Retail Trade, June

ASEAN (Association of South East Asian Nations) Regional Forum - Philippines

National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Children's Day

Jeans for Genes Day

International Beer Day

World Athletics Championships - London (on until 13 August)

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