Squiz Today / 09 June 2023

Squiz Today – Friday, 9 June

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Squiz Today Podcast

Easing you into the long weekend. 

Today’s listen time: 8.00 minutes

9 / 20
10 / 15
14 / 24
11 / 15
10 / 18
8 / 13
23 / 33
5 / 13

Squiz Sayings

“It can be really empowering to know I can wear these colours and feel good about my appearance. Like, I’m not ugly – I’m just a summer.”

Said 22yo stylist Sarah Priest on the resurging art of colour analysis that’s being embraced by Gen Zers thanks to TikTok. It’s all fun and games until someone says you shouldn’t wear black…

Questions over contradicting accounts

Coalition MPs are targeting PM Anthony Albanese and senior Labor ministers over their engagement with former Liberal staffer Brittany Higgins and her partner David Sharaz. Of particular interest is what contact they had before her claims that Bruce Lehrmann assaulted her in Parliament House in 2019 were made public. The Australian yesterday published details of text messages between Higgins and Sharaz in early 2021, where they discuss passing on the details of her claims to Labor politicians so they could grill senior Morrison Government figures about their handling of her claims when the story broke. Coalition leader Peter Dutton yesterday said, “there are a lot of questions to be answered”.

Well, the Labor politicians named say they didn’t know about Higgins’ allegations until it all became public. Environment Minister Tanya Plibersek and Finance Minister Katy Gallagher both say they weren’t pre-briefed, and yesterday, Albanese said, “I had not met Brittany Higgins until I met her publicly on the same day she met Scott Morrison”. But the texts point to Sharaz being in contact with Gallagher days before the story was broken by news.com.au and Channel Ten’s The Project. “Katy Gallagher messaged me. She’s angry and wants to help,” Sharaz wrote. Now, the Coalition is pointing to conflicting timelines of who knew what and when. And they want answers on how Labor worked with Higgins and Sharaz to inflict political damage on the then government. 

Well, some pundits say the Morrison Government’s response to Higgins’ claims was an issue in last year’s election, which they lost. And then, in December last year, she made a confidential settlement with the Commonwealth said to be worth $3 million (although Higgins says it was less than that). This week, Liberal Senator Linda Reynolds – Higgins’ former boss – said she was concerned about the “unusually swift” payout process, and she’s pushing for the new anti-corruption commission to take a look at it. But Attorney-General Mark Dreyfus says settling the claim wasn’t political – it was in line with the law. And Albanese says it’s “inappropriate” for politicians to direct the commission on what it should investigate because it’s “independent of politics, that’s the idea.” Regardless, Dutton says there needs to be “a true factual explanation of what’s going on”. And with Federal Parliament resuming next week, get ready for more on this…

AusPol Australian News

Squiz the Rest

A very symbolic ban

Another thing on the agenda, when our pollies return to Canberra next week, is voting on a proposed bill to ban the display of certain controversial symbols. We can’t name it here lest we end up in your junk folder, but one of them kinda sounds like ‘potsticker’… If the bill is passed into law, it would see people face up to a year’s jail time if they publicly display the symbol or anything that closely resembles it. The display and trade of related memorabilia will also be criminalised, but religious uses of the symbol have been excluded from the ban. That’s because it’s a sacred symbol in Hinduism and Buddhism. As for the offensive salute, the states and territories will be responsible for cracking down on that. “There is no place in Australia for symbols that glorify the horrors of the Holocaust,” Attorney-General Dreyfus said yesterday.

AusPol Australian News

More legal woes for Donald Trump

The former US president could face new criminal charges after federal prosecutors notified his legal team that he was under investigation over his handling of classified documents after leaving office. Last year, prosecutors said they were looking into whether Trump had broken laws regarding the handling of sensitive documents and obstructing investigators after an FBI raid on his Mar-a-Lago estate in Florida revealed more than 300 classified White House documents were being stored there. The latest development is the strongest indication yet that prosecutors are planning on laying charges against Trump, who took to his social media platform to deny wrongdoing and say reports he’s been told he’ll be indicted are “not true”. And if you’re having trouble keeping track of all Trump’s legal issues, here’s a good guide.


Prince Harry’s days in court

The Duke of Sussex has wrapped up his record-breaking testimony before the UK High Court as one of 100 people suing Mirror Group Newspapers (MGN). They have accused the company behind the Daily Mirror tabloid newspaper of phone hacking and other unlawful information-gathering methods, and his is one of 4 test cases to go before the court. Testifying over 2 days, Harry claimed 33 articles written about him between 1996 and 2010 could only have used illegally-obtained information and that he found a tracking device attached to his then-girlfriend Chelsy Davy’s car. He was unable to provide call data to back up his claims – something that previous successful hacking lawsuits have relied on. MGN previously admitted one instance of unlawful information gathering regarding the prince, but the company denies the latest claims. And Harry is also pursuing 3 other hacking claims against the British tabloids. His “life’s work” continues… 

Phone hacking, tracking devices, and a prince with an axe to grind against the British tabloids. You’d better believe we’ve got a #Squiz Shortcut for that…

World News

It’s a big weekend in international sport…

… and football and tennis fans have a few late nights/early mornings ahead of them. First up is the French Open tennis grand slam, which has fast reached the pointy end of the tournament. Top seed Iga Swiatek of Poland faces the 43rd-ranked Czech Karolina Muchova in the women’s singles final tomorrow night. And on the men’s side, world #1 young gun Carlos Alcaraz is heading to a thrilling match against #2 Novak Djokovic today as Norwegian 4th seed Casper Ruud plays Germany’s Alexander Zverev for a place in Sunday night’s final. And after last weekend’s FA Cup final delivered a victory to Manchester City, the team is angling for another win in the European Champions League final against Inter Milan on Sunday morning. That’s the comp that sees the best clubs in Europe battle it out, and it could see Man City become the first English club since 1999 to take out ‘the Treble’ after they claimed the Premier League title last month. With the women’s World Cup soon to kick off, we’re on a soccer roll…


Aussie producers win(e) big

You don’t need us to tell you that Oz is home to some of the best wines in the world, and our reputation was cemented after Aussie drops dominated the 2023 Decanter World Wine Awards in London. It’s one of the world’s most prestigious drinks competitions, and out of 18,250 entries from 57 countries, Oz claimed 10 out of 50 Best in Show awards – more than any other nation. Aussie winners included a Hunter Valley Semillon and a Muscat from Rutherglen in northeastern Victoria. But it was South Oz that claimed half of our total Best in Show nods, while Western Oz’s Margaret River region claimed 3. And if you’re wondering, they range in price from about $35 to over $100. Cheers to that…

Australian News World News

Friday Lites – Three things we liked this week

Are we allowed to talk about the end of Succession yet? We’ll give it a bit more time… In spoiler-free anticipation, here’s a music video covering Tom and Greg’s close relationship that the actors have referenced in recent interviews. And here’s the rom-com movie trailer… 

Our favourite Instagram account at the moment is a French real estate business. Each day they post a property that’s for sale, and let’s just say we could get a “magnificent château” for the price of our tiny Sydney apartment…  

Texas: it’s known for big hats and terrible gun laws… It’s also known for the Texas sheet cake that we recently heard about. There’s a whole story behind it, but the idea is you’re getting a rich chocolate cake with icing – and it’s super easy to make.

Friday Lites

Squiz the Day

10.45pm (AEST) – Tennis – Men’s Singles Semi-Finals

ABS Data Release – Monthly Business Turnover Indicator, April

Barunga Festival begins (until 12 June)

Birthdays for Patricia Cornwell (1956), Michael J Fox (1961), Johnny Depp (1963), and Natalie Portman (1981)

Anniversary of:
• China leasing Hong Kong’s new territories, including Hong Kong, to the UK for 99 years (1898), as well as the anniversary of the lease expiring, handing the city back to China (1997)
• the first appearance of Donald Duck in The Wise Little Hen (1934)
• the Ghost Train fire at Luna Park in Sydney that killed 7 (1979)

Squiz the Day

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