Squiz Today / 16 May 2022

Squiz Today – Monday, 16 May

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Squiz Today Podcast

Helping you get your week started right. 

Today’s listen time: 9 minutes

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Squiz Sayings

“My experience of working from home is you spend an awful lot of time making another cup of coffee and then, you know, getting up, walking very slowly to the fridge, hacking off a small piece of cheese, then walking very slowly back to your laptop and then forgetting what it was you’re doing.”

Said UK PM Boris Johnson of the perils of working from home. He’s urging people to get back into the office, but the pull of the tea/cheese vortex is real…

The election campaign turns the corner towards home

There are 5 more sleeps until we find out if PM Scott Morrison’s Coalition will lead the nation for a 4th term or if we’ll experience the 7th change in government of the last 50 years under Labor’s Anthony Albanese. Or there could be a hung parliament – and it could take ages to work out who has won. You catch our drift – there’s …

You did… It’s less a ‘launch’ and more of an opportunity to get the gang together and for the leader to wax lyrical. But there is a technicality to note: after the party in power officially launches their campaign, everyone starts paying their own transport and associated campaign costs. Us taxpayers have footed the bill until now… But to yesterday’s events, Morrison said he’s “just warming up” after steering the country through “one of the most challenging times we have ever known”. He announced a big new housing policy: first home buyers will be able to access their superannuation (up to $50,000/40% of their savings – whichever is lower) to help make that purchase. It’s the Coalition’s answer to Labor’s policy that makes the federal government a part-owner of 10,000 scheme participant’s homes. The major parties agree on one thing: Australians over 55yo will be able to put $300,000 into their superannuation from the sale of their home, among other rule changes.

Dunno. But as we head into the final week, Labor remains the favourite to win Saturday’s election. And it’s the Coalition’s inability to reel in Labor that saw Morrison change tack on Friday when he said he can be “a bit of a bulldozer” and that Australians would see “a lot of other gears in the way I work” if he is re-elected. And yesterday he said: “I’ve got a big plan. I’m seeking a second term because I’m just warming up.” Labor’s Albanese didn’t miss with his response: “A bulldozer wrecks things. A bulldozer knocks things over. I’m a builder. If I’m elected prime minister, I will build things in this country.” And yesterday, he quipped that “even Scott Morrison is distancing himself from Scott Morrison”. As we said, 5 sleeps to go…

AusPol Election 22

Squiz the Rest

Mass shooting was a hate crime

Ten people have been killed and 3 people were injured in a shooting in New York State that authorities have labelled a racially-motivated hate crime. An 18yo man in full military gear entered a busy supermarket yesterday and used a high-powered rifle to shoot shoppers while streaming the attack online. Reports say he shouted racial slurs during the attack. He was arrested after a tense stand-off with police and charged with first-degree murder. Police say he drove for several hours to reach the predominantly black area of the city, and all the victims are black. New York Governor Kathy Hochul said the man is a “white supremacist who has engaged in an act of terrorism,” adding that it was a “military-style execution”. US President Joe Biden condemned the attack yesterday, saying racially-motivated hate crimes are “abhorrent to the very fabric of this nation.”

Crime World News

Lebanon goes to the polls

The small country in the Middle East experiencing soaring poverty and anger at its ruling parties went to the polls yesterday to cast a ballot on its future. A massive blast ripped through the port in the capital Beirut in 2020, killing 218 people, injuring scores more and wrecking the city’s infrastructure. Locals remain furious at the government for failing to dispose of tonnes of explosive ammonium nitrate that led to the explosion that scuttled the economy that was already in terminal decline due to corruption and mismanagement. In a sign of how bad things are, a new report from the United Nations last week found that 4 in every 5 Lebanese live in poverty. So, analysts say reform-minded candidates could be propelled into parliament, but change is difficult due to the set-up of its sectarian political system that skews towards established religious parties. The last election in 2018 saw the Shiite Hezbollah movement and its allies win 71 out of Parliament’s 128 seats. Note: our government listed Hezbollah as a banned terrorist organisation last year.

World News

Musk looking shaky on Twitter deal

Elon Musk’s Twitter takeover keeps hitting snags after the billionaire said the deal was “temporarily on hold” pending details about spam and fake accounts on the social media platform. In a tweet, he said he was looking into company claims that spam accounts make up 229 million users – or fewer than 5% of the daily active users. He said his team would do a random sample of 100 followers because that’s the sample size Twitter used to make the assertion. And then, he was told by Twitter that he was in breach of a non-disclosure agreement… Long story short, Musk reckons there are more fake accounts, leading analysts to observe that the acquisition has hit some choppy water. Twitter isn’t the only thing keeping Musk busy – he met with Indonesian President Joko Widowo yesterday to discuss the country’s nickel industry, its space ambitions, and the supply of batteries.

Business & Finance Technology

Vale Andrew Symonds

The cricket community is mourning another loss after former all-rounder Andrew Symonds died in a car accident near Townsville on Saturday night. Police say the 46yo’s car veered off the road shortly after 11pm and rolled – they are still investigating the cause of the accident. Emergency service workers attempted to revive him, but he died at the scene – witnesses said his dogs wouldn’t leave his side. “We are still in shock – I’m just thinking of the 2 kids,” Symond’s wife Laura said after flying from Sydney to Townsville yesterday morning. Symonds played 198 one-day internationals for Australia, 26 Tests and 14 Twenty20 internationals, and he was known as an exciting batter, handy bowler, and excellent fielder. Tributes flowed from former teammates for the larrikin who loved fishing and was nicknamed ‘Roy’ – close mate/former wicketkeeper Adam Gilchrist said it was “another tragic day for cricket” after the recent deaths of Shane Warne and Rod Marsh.


Come on, Vogue…

It’s not every day that the owner of a rural English pub gets a legal letter from Vogue publisher Conde Nast asking them to change the business’s name. But that’s what happened to Mark Graham, who runs ‘The Star Inn at Vogue,’ situated in a village named Vogue in Cornwall. The letter said members of the public might be confused by the suggestion of a tie-up with the fashion bible. “I went ‘you’re not having me, my handsome’,” Graham responded. He also noted that the village and pub have been there for hundreds of years, predating the publication. Vogue has since backed down, saying “we did not need to send such a letter on this occasion.” Former US first lady Melania Trump has also lined up for a crack, calling the US version of the mag “biased” for not placing her on the cover during her time in the White House.

Quirky News

Apropos of Nothing

Ukraine won yesterday’s Eurovision grand final with overwhelming support from global viewers. The fighting nation scored 192 points from the jury and a whopping 439 points from the audience. Australia’s Sheldon Riley and his bedazzled cummerbund did us proud, placing 15th.

Aussie Ange Postecoglou has become a hero in Scotland after steering Celtic to take out the ​​Scottish Premiership. The former Socceroos coach who left our shores disillusioned has become the first Australian to coach (let alone win a title) at a major European men’s side. Ted Lasso, eat your heart out

And in the UK, a 7-layer lemon Swiss roll/amaretti trifle beat out 5,000 desserts to be named the official pudding of the Platinum Jubilee. Contest organisers hope people will serve it to celebrate Queen Elizabeth’s 70-year reign. It’s a commitment, but here’s the recipe if you’re up for it…

Quirky News

Squiz the Day

12.30pm (AEST) – Crossbench MPs independent Zali Steggall, Greens leader Adam Bandt, United Australia Party leader Craig Kelly, and independent Rex Patrick address the National Press Club – Canberra

International Day of Living Together in Peace

International Day of Light

Start of National Volunteer Week (until May 22)

The Sydney Writers’ Festival begins (until 22 May)

Anniversary of:
• the marriage of Marie Antoinette and future King Louis XVI of France (1770)
• the release of the Beach Boys’ Pet Sounds (1966)
• Anniversary of the death of former PM Bob Hawke (2019)

Squiz the Day

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