Squiz Today / 16 October 2023

Squiz Today – Monday, 16 October

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Squiz Today Podcast

Today’s listen time: 9.30 minutes

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Squiz Sayings

“She’s a gutsy bear and I think her story won out. And I think girl power won out.”

Said Fat Bear Week founder Mike Fitz of this year’s winner Grazer. The large and in charge mumma bear steamrolled her hunky competitor Chunk, receiving nearly double his votes despite being the smaller of the two. What a #girlboss…

Australia says yeah, nah…

The Squiz 

Most of the votes have been counted, and the proposal to amend the Constitution to enshrine an Indigenous Voice to Parliament has been solidly rejected. Not only did circa 60% of Aussies record a ‘No’ vote, but there was no state where a majority of residents supported the case for change. The ACT was the only jurisdiction to vote ‘Yes’ with a stonking 60% in favour of the amendment, but being a territory, that counted towards the national total only. On Saturday, a gutted PM Anthony Albanese took responsibility for the defeat, saying, “when you aim high, sometimes you fall short.” But Coalition leader Peter Dutton continued his criticism of Albanese’s handling of the exercise, calling it “the referendum that Australia did not need to have.”

What are the key takeouts?

How about 3 of ‘em? 

  • Electorally speaking, it’s a huge defeat. If you break down the result by our 151 federal electorates, about 30 voted in support of the proposition, and they are based in the inner suburbs/affluent areas of our state capitals. And the further from the cities, the more resounding the ‘No’ vote
  • Queensland returned the biggest ‘No’ vote, with almost 69% against it. South Oz was next, with 64.5% voting no – and that’s surprised some analysts given the state’s getting its own Indigenous Voice. Victoria recorded the strongest ‘Yes’ result, with 45% of residents in favour. 
  • As for why the referendum went down, a lot of people have said a lot of things… But to stay top-level, Albanese says the lack of bipartisan support was the biggest factor in the result. But ‘No’ campaigner Warren Mundine said the lack of details about how the Voice would work was a big negative for voters.  

So what’s next?

Well, the PM says it’s “not the end of the road” and that reconciliation is not dead. But his government won’t pursue a Voice… As for the Coalition, Indigenous Australians spokeswoman Jacinta Nampijinpa Price says we should begin “a new era in Indigenous policy” focusing on those who need the most help. She’s called for a Royal Commission into child sexual abuse in Indigenous communities and an audit of spending on Indigenous programs. As for ‘Yes’ supporting Indigenous leaders, many will be silent this week for “mourning and reflection”. Indigenous Australians Minister Linda Burney acknowledged that the result would be hard for many Indigenous people. “Be proud of the 65,000 years of history and culture that you are part of, and your rightful place in this country. We will carry on, and we will move forward, and we will thrive,” she said.

Australian News

Squiz the Rest

Israel prepares to invade Gaza

Israeli troops have massed on the border, which analysts say means that an invasion of the Palestinian territory is imminent. Iran (which is a big backer of Hamas) has warned Israel not to send troops into Gaza, saying there would be “far-reaching consequences”. Also making calls over the weekend was US President Joe Biden, who called the Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu to reiterate his support for Israel, as well as making it clear that the US doesn’t want the conflict to expand. Biden also called Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas to offer humanitarian support for the displaced Gazans. In the week since Hamas militants killed 1,300 Israeli citizens, Israel has blocked water, food, and fuel from entering Gaza. A million Gazans have been displaced from their homes amidst shelling, which has killed 2,670 Palestinians so far. 

World News

Meanwhile, here in Oz…

Thousands of Aussies turned up to pro-Palestinian rallies in Melbourne and Sydney yesterday, holding signs saying ‘free Palestine’ and ‘stop the genocide of Palestinians’. The rally in Melbourne was authorised by police, but the Sydney rally, not so much… NSW Premier Chris Minns did not want the rallies to go ahead – a message that around 6,000 people ignored. Meanwhile, Aussies in Israel who are eager to get out have been on edge after 2 repatriation flights were cancelled on Saturday over safety concerns. Yesterday, Foreign Minister Penny Wong announced that the government had worked with other nations that are also getting people out of Tel Aviv. The government also said it was “arranging flights to assist travellers with their onward journey from Dubai to Australia”.

Australian News World News

Kiwiland votes for change

Our mates across the ditch have also been busy at the ballot box, turfing out its Labour government in Saturday’s general election. Already on the slide under former PM Jacinda Ardern, it was a toughie for PM Chris Hipkins to win with cost of living pressures biting hard – but the almost halving of its representation to 34 seats has still gotta sting… The centre-right National Party, led by former Air New Zealand boss Christopher Luxon, picked up 17 seats, which is not enough to form government on their own. The likely outcome is that the Nats will form a coalition with the right-leaning ACT Party, although there’s also a chance that Winston Peters and NZ First are back… Also elected was 21yo Māori candidate Hana-Rawhiti Maipi-Clarke – she’s become the youngest MP in 170 years. And it wasn’t all bad for ousted Labour leader Hipkins: he’ll now have more time to spend with new partner Toni. Aww…

World News

See you in Italy

You weren’t dreaming it – all of your mates/colleagues/neighbours were in Italy in the middle of this year. Or maybe you were lucky enough to make the journey yourself – whatever it is, we were supremely jealous… And now, the Bureau of Stats has dropped its data on overseas travel, and heaps of Aussies migrated north during June-August. The top Eurosummer destination was the UK, with 214,800 Aussies heading there. Italy came in an impressive second, with 130,510 returnees – the most on record. One travel agent put Italy’s popularity down to “the White Lotus effect” after the last season of the fab HBO show was set in Sicily. And all hail Bali – Indonesia was still the most popular destination, with 379,810 returning travellers during August. Pass the Bintang…

Australian News Economy

A Swift consolation prize

If you weren’t one of the lucky ones who picked up tickets to pop genius Taylor Swift’s Eras Tour, this one’s for you… Taking to the big screen, Taylor Swift: The Eras Tour debuted in cinemas over the weekend, with droves of Swifties turning out for the film version of the mega stadium show. Just don’t expect a behind-the-scenes: according to one reviewer, the film is “a near exact replica of her blockbuster concert performance”, complete with a runtime of 2 hours and 48 minutes. The last big concert-to-film adaptation was Justin Bieber’s 2011 Never Say Never, but with Eras on track to rake in US$100 million on its opening weekend, Biebs will be blown out of the water. In keeping with the party vibe, Swift’s film will only be shown on weekends. American cinema chain AMC welcomed Swifties but had one request: “Please do not dance on our seats”… 

Culture Entertainment

Apropos of nothing

Kelvin Kiptum’s record-breaking marathon effort last week has put the focus on the new tranche of super-shoes helping to crumble world records. But here’s the kicker: a pair of elite runners will put you back $1,000 and might only be good for one race…

If you park next to or drive a big car, you’ll know exactly why Standards Australia has proposed increasing the length of a standard car spot. Another 20cm should be enough to fit our love of oversized utes and SUVs, they reckon. 

Can’t help hitting the cones? An analysis by a food addiction expert reckons about 15% of adults have an issue. And it’s ice cream, soft drinks and other ultra-processed foods that are the problem because they might be as addictive as heroin or cocaine…

Quirky News

Squiz the Day

Term 4 begins for public schools in South Oz and Tassie

Both houses of Parliament sit for a week

Start of National Nutrition Week (until 23 October)

World Food Day

World Bread Day

Sport Australia Hall of Fame ceremony – Sydney

Birthdays for Flea (1962), Casey Stoner (1985), and Naomi Osaka (1997)

Anniversary of:
• the death of Marie Antoinette (1793)
• Oscar Wilde’s birthday (1854)
• the foundation of the Liberal Party of Australia (1944)
• the publication of Charlotte Brontë’s Jane Eyre (1847) and CS Lewis’ The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe (1950)
• the beginning of the Cuban Missile Crisis (1962)
• the marriage of actors Kristen Bell and Dax Shepard (2013)

Squiz the Day

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