Squiz Today / 10 January 2022

Squiz Today – Monday, 10 January

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Squiz Today Podcast

Get up, get your news, and get going. 

Today’s listen time: 9 minutes

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Squiz Sayings

“She has that almost old-fashioned, Queen Mother attitude to drama – she just doesn’t do it.”

Said a friend of the Duchess of Cambridge (aka Kate Middleton), who celebrated her 40th birthday yesterday. Another thing she doesn’t do: drab

COVID crashes and crunches

Australians are being urged to have medication to hand as it’s “likely” that many of us will test positive to COVID in the coming days, if we haven’t already, according to Deputy Chief Medical Officer Professor Michael Kidd. The advice comes as more than 266,000 people (including Governor-General David Hurley) were confirmed as new COVID cases over the weekend. Kidd says many won’t get any symptoms, but we should use paracetamol/ibuprofen for fevers and stay hydrated if we do. “It’s important to be prepared because you won’t be able to go to your supermarket or pharmacy if you are diagnosed with COVID-19,” he said yesterday.

Yeah, we noticed that too. There are not enough workers to transport and distribute food from the producer to the shelves ATM because many have COVID or are in iso. In response, NSW and Queensland will let symptom-free close contacts who work in food production and distribution get back to it. Industry players say about 30% of workers in the food transport and distribution game have been sidelined in recent weeks, along with 10% of supermarket store staff. These exceptions are similar to changes recently introduced for critical health workers – and officials are considering a plan to allow critical workers across sectors including aviation, essential services and child care to get back to work. They are changes the unions have described as “beyond reckless”.

Kids aged 5-11yo are eligible to get their first COVID jab from today. The doses need to be given 2 months apart, which means school-aged children will have the opportunity to get at least one shot before heading back to school. Queenslanders have a bit longer to hit that milestone… Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk yesterday pushed back the start of the 2022 school year to 7 February. No such luck for Year 11 and 12 students – they start remote learning from 31 January. Palaszczuk said modelling shows the state will reach the Omicron peak in the last week of January, and delaying the start of school will help minimise the spread and reduce the chance of snap closures. For its part, NSW officials are “absolutely committed” to getting kids back to school at the end of January.


Squiz the Rest

Just go away, Seth…

Queensland just can’t catch a good weather break at the moment… At one point on Saturday,15 people were unaccounted for as a weekend of dangerous floods topped off a hectic week. One of the worst-off areas is the Wide Bay-Burnett region – some parts recorded more than 670mm of rain in the 24 hours before Saturday morning. For context, that’s more than half of Sydney’s annual rainfall… And the search continued yesterday for a missing 14yo girl who was washed away in floodwaters near Gympie on Saturday morning. In Maryborough, residents in the town centre were urged to evacuate yesterday afternoon when a temporary flood levee gave way. A bit further south, a man died when his ute became submerged in floodwaters at Kanigan, north of Brisbane, on Friday night. The weather bureau says it’s all because ex-tropical Cyclone Seth brought “unexpected” heavy rain over an extended period – something of a rarity. Meanwhile, Far North Queenslanders are bracing for Cyclone Tiffany

Australian News

Djokovic’s challenge hits centre court

World #1 men’s tennis player Novak Djokovic’s appeal against the Australian Government’s deportation orders will proceed today in Melbourne. And there has been a thrilling rally of legal volleys over the weekend. First, Djokovic’s case to stay centres on his claim that he received a letter from the Department of Home Affairs on 1 January. That corro said his Australia Travel Declaration had been assessed, and his responses “indicated that he met the requirements for a quarantine-free arrival into Australia”. Yesterday, the Aussie Government said it will argue the letter offered no guarantee of entry. Also under scrutiny is Djokovic’s claim that he tested positive for COVID on 16 December because he made several maskless public appearances in the days afterwards. Tennis Australia’s Craig Tiley has broken his silence – he says they’ve been given conflicting advice by the state and federal governments. Game on.


More talks over the Ukraine crisis

Picking up where the presidents of the US and Russia left off last year, officials will meet in Geneva on Monday (local time) as the crisis on the Ukraine-Russian border continues. The issues remain the same. Russian President Vladimir Putin does not want NATO setting up shop in Ukraine – it would bring US and European military assets and agendas too close for his comfort. Putin also wants guarantees about US troop movements in the area – something US President Joe Biden has refused to provide. What the US will discuss is the placement of missiles and scope of military exercises in Europe, officials said yesterday. But US analysts say the meeting is about a lot more than those bibs and bobs – the White House is testing Putin and whether he’s serious about ending the crisis or if he’s stuffing them around while getting ready to invade. Watch this space…

World News

Ashes Test ends in a draw, and Barty fires up

England has salvaged some pride holding out the Aussies in the 4th Test of the Ashes series in a thrilling end to the last day in Sydney. Going right down to the wire, the match finished in a draw with one wicket to spare. Australia was unable to unleash our fast bowlers on the English tail because of bad light at the SCG – that left our spinners, including vice-captain Steve Smith to do the honours. The result leaves the series at 3-0 our way with one Test to go in Hobart. As for tennis, our world #1 women’s player Ash Barty is in great form heading into the Aussie Open. Yesterday she took out the Adelaide International singles title in straight sets against Kazakhstani Elena Rybakina. Barty then teamed up with American Storm Sanders to win the doubles. Not bad work for a Sunday arvo… Meanwhile, Rafael Nadal has won the Melbourne Summer Set – he said it was an important win after recent injuries have held him up. 


Vale Sidney Poitier

It was confirmed on Saturday that the revered actor died on Thursday night at his home in Los Angeles at 94yo – no cause was given. Poitier, who was American-born but grew up in the Bahamas, was the first black man to win best actor at the Academy Awards. That happened in 1963 for his turn in Lilies of the Field – right at the time when the civil rights movement was beginning to make headway in the US. And he was hugely successful – during that period, Poitier was one of the highest-paid actors in Hollywood up there with Paul Newman and John Wayne. But the roles available to him were more limited than white actors, and he talked about wanting the opportunity to play “more dimensional” characters if only “the fabric of the society were different”. What Poitier did was blaze a trail for others – although it took until 2002 for the next black man, Denzel Washington, to claim the Oscar for best actor. “He opened doors for all of us,” said Washington about his friend.


Apropos of Nothing

2022, we had such high hopes – but we’re determined to keep a stiff upper lip despite the headwinds. But we’ve got to say our confidence was shaken with news of a global potato shortage. If that’s not a sign of the end-times, we’re unsure what is…

Also looking to put a more positive foot forward this year is Turkmenistan’s President Gurbanguly Berdymukhamedov (dare you to give that a go…). He’s ordered the extinguishing of the country’s “Gateway to Hell”. Seems sensible…

Mr Darcy and Mr Bingley can drive a robotic car. No, this isn’t some futuristic Jane Austen spin-off – they’re goldfish. Which makes things so much clearer, right?

Quirky News

Squiz the Day

10.00am (AEDT) – Novak Djokovic’s challenge to the cancellation of his visa kicks off in the Federal Court – Melbourne

12.00pm (AEDT) – Australian Open men’s and women’s qualifying matches begin (on until 14 Jan) – Melbourne

1.00pm (AEDT) – The 79th Golden Globe Awards goes ahead without any stars, red carpet or TV broadcast

ABS Data Release – Building Approvals, November 2021

Margaret Thatcher Day (Falkland Islands)

World Hindi Day

A birthday for singer Rod Stewart (1945)

Anniversary of:
• the establishment of the frontrunner to the United Nations, the League of Nations, as the Treaty of Versailles took effect (1920)
• the deaths of Coco Chanel (1971) and David Bowie (2016)

Squiz the Day

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