Squiz Today / 17 July 2023

Squiz Today – Monday, 17 July

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Squiz Today Podcast

Hey ho let’s go. 

Today’s listen time: 9.30 minutes

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Squiz Sayings

“You realise it’s not a dead rubber when you lose it or win it.”

Said former NSW coach Phil Gould who spoke for millions of joyful Blues fans after last night’s third and final State of Origin ended with a win for NSW. The game didn’t change the series result – the Maroons had thumping victories in the first two matches…

US-China climate talks heat up


In another sign of renewal of the US-China relationship, senior Biden administration official John Kerry has arrived in Beijing for talks on addressing the climate crisis. The Special Presidential Envoy for Climate is following in the footsteps of US Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen, who have made the trip to China in the last month after several years of tensions due to the pandemic and geopolitical differences. The 2 nations are the world’s biggest economies and the largest polluters, and they have previously put aside their differences to work on initiatives to reduce emissions. But over the last 12 months, it’s been a bumpy road to hold talks, let alone convert words into actions. 


We don’t have to remind you that the US and China have been going at it over the last few years… Amidst all that, officials kept the climate chat going and struck an agreement at the 2021 Glasgow climate talks. Then, US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi went to Taiwan in August last year, which really got Beijing’s goat… It’s taken since then for Kerry to score an invitation to meet with his counterpart Xie Zhenhua and possibly President Xi Jinping. The 2 countries account for nearly 40% of global emissions, and China burns more coal than the rest of the world combined. They are also the 2 largest investors in clean energy, but Kerry says things aren’t moving quickly enough, and he is “really looking for some specific actions that are going to move the ball here.” And if the 2 sides need a prompt to get a wriggle along, Kerry will land in Beijing in sweltering conditions… 


Ooh it’s hot… Many Aussies on their European holidays will have been saying ‘geez it’s hot’ a lot in recent days – southern parts of the continent are officially scorchio. In the US, 110 million people – a third of Americans – were under extreme heat advisories, watches and warnings yesterday, and forecasters say conditions are set to worsen. There are record-breaking wildfires in Canada. In South Korea, more than 30 people are dead due to extreme rainfall in the central city of Cheongju. And it’s extra hot in Israel, where PM Benjamin Netanyahu was hospitalised on Friday after venturing in the sun without a hat and water. “Not a good idea,” he said. No, El Niño, it’s not…

Environment & Science World News

Squiz the Rest

Passing the Fadden baton

As expected, the Liberal-National Party handily won Saturday’s by-election in the Gold Coast seat of Fadden. Filling the seat of outgoing former minister Stuart Robert is local councillor Cameron Caldwell – he won the seat with a 2-3% swing towards him. Yesterday, Treasurer Jim Chalmers (a Labor MP from just up the road…) said that anything less than a 4% swing would be “embarrassing” for Coalition leader Peter Dutton with Deputy PM Richard Marles calling it a “very, very lethargic result”. However, Deputy Liberal leader Sussan Ley said the swing exceeded expectations. The Coalition holds 21 of the state’s 30 federal seats in Queensland. And some analysts say the Fadden result shows it will be difficult for the Labor Palaszczuk Government to win a fourth term when voters turn out in October next year. 


Bullock out of the gate

Friday brought an end to Reserve Bank Governor Philip Lowe’s misery… He (and the nation…) heard he won’t have his term renewed and will be replaced by his deputy Michele Bullock. And over the weekend, she’s been called “someone who very quickly masters a brief” (paywall) and “a plain speaker” with “a lot of emotional intelligence”. She’s also had a warm welcome from Coalition Treasury spokesman Angus Taylor who said she’s a “highly capable and qualified economist”, and the unions noted she’s the first woman in the role. Along with reducing inflation, Bullock’s job will be to implement the recommendations of the recent review – they require different capabilities, but Treasurer Chalmers says she got “the best combination of attributes to take the bank forward.” Her 7-year stint in the top chair begins in September. Meanwhile, Chalmers and Lowe travelled to India yesterday for this week’s G20 meeting of global finance ministers. Not awkward at all… 

Australian News Business & Finance

C’mon Barbie, let’s go… on strike

Actors in the US have spent their first weekend on the picket lines after the 160,000 members of the actors’ union voted in favour of a strike on Friday. The offices of studios like Netflix, Paramount, Disney, and Warner Bros were picketed as the actors’ union joins the 11,500 Hollywood screenwriters on strike since May. Both unions are calling for higher pay and a fairer allocation of streaming profits, and the actors also want controls on AI-generated versions of their likenesses. The production of new seasons of The White Lotus, The Last of Us, and Emily in Paris have halted, and the cast of the upcoming Oppenheimer film left their own premiere in London to join the strike. Barbie’s Margot Robbie also spoke out in favour of the union at her final pre-strike promo event – and it was pointed out that the Aussie has been a supporter since her Neighbours days

Culture Entertainment World News

A weekend of clinchers

Carlos Alcaraz, the 20yo, beat reigning champ Novak Djokovic in a five-set thriller to win his first Grand Slam trophy, 1-6, 7-6 (6), 6-1, 3-6, 6-4. Alcaraz becomes the first player not named Federer, Nadal, Murray, or Djokovic to win on the grass since 2002. “A dream come true for me,” Alcaraz said post-match. And it was an emotional win for Marketa Vondrousova, with the Czech becoming the first unseeded player to win the women’s Wimbledon title. She beat Ons Jabeur 6-4 6-4 in a victory she called “crazy”. “When we came, I was just like, ‘Try to win a couple of matches.’ Now this happened.” And Australia’s women’s Ashes team are grinners today, having clinched the series with their one-day international win overnight. England were chasing down 282 runs and narrowly missed it, coming just short at 279. Go Aussies!

Australian News Sport

Dusting off a classic

One of Australia’s fanciest documents – our 1297 edition of the Magna Carta – will soon be back on display in Parliament House. Brushing up on our Latin, the ‘Great Charter’ is the founding document of England’s system of laws, and it formalised the principles of things like trial by jury, freedom from arbitrary detention, and the need for leaders to follow the same rule as citizens. According to parliamentary librarian Dianne Heriot, it will be back on display in late 2024 once it’s housed in “a suitable display case that will surround it with appropriate inert gas to ensure it doesn’t deteriorate”, which sounds tricky… Australia’s copy is one of 4, and it was found in an English school desk in 1936. It became the first to leave England when it was bought by the Menzies Government in 1952 for £12,500. Experts reckon it’s now worth over $35 million. Good one, Bob… 

Australian News Culture

Apropos of nothing

The lightning flashed, the tree toppled – and, just like that, 100 guests were trapped inside the former home of British mystery writer Agatha Christie on Saturday. Instead of re-enacting Christie’s And Then There Were None, guests filled the time with tea and croquet.

Out on the wily, windy moors of Sydney Park, more than 500 Kate Bush fans gathered to mark the singer’s birthday by reproducing her iconic 1978 music video for Wuthering Heights. Similar events are scheduled for Adelaide on 28 July and Canberra and Brissie on 29 July.

And when you’re done with the red dress, it’s time to ease into a comfy pair of luxury jeans – if you’ve got a spare couple of grand. Fashion season in Paris has turned up a cute pair for $4,100, or you can splash out on Balenciaga’s $39,000 oil-on-canvas fit. You know it makes sense…

Quirky News

Squiz the Day

G20 meeting of finance ministers and central bank governors (until 18 July) – Gandhinagar, India

Term 3 begins for public schools in NSW, the ACT, and Western Oz

World Emoji Day

World Day of International Justice

Birthdays for Camilla, Queen Consort (1947) and Angela Merkel (1954)

Anniversary of:
• the execution of Russian Czar Nicholas II, his wife and their five children by Bolsheviks (1918)
• the opening of the first Disneyland in Anaheim, California (1955)
• the death of singer Billie Holiday (1959)
• the downing of MH17 over Ukraine (2014)

Squiz the Day

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