Squiz Today / 19 August 2019

Squiz Today – Monday, 19 August


“There are lots of positives here that we can look to - there's no substitute for training than the real thing.”

Said Surf Life Saving director Cheryl McCarthy of the three-day search for a missing swimmer near the NSW South Coast town of Tathra that turned out to be a hoax. With costs approaching $1 million, McCarthy’s a glass-half-full kinda woman…


New Zealand police have charged a 23yo man with the murder of 33yo Australian Sean McKinnon after he was shot early on Friday morning. The court ruled the accused’s name be suppressed, at least until his next court appearance on 27 August. McKinnon and his Canadian fiancee Bianca Buckley were sleeping in a campervan in a carpark near Raglan, a renowned surfing town in Waikato on New Zealand’s North Island, when they were targeted in what police say was a random attack.

• The gunman allegedly ambushed the couple after 2am on Friday and demanded the keys to the campervan. Police say he fired several shots at the van before hijacking the vehicle and driving off with McKinnon inside.

• Buckley escaped and ran barefoot to a farm some kilometres away to raise the alarm. McKinnon’s body was found in the van, which was abandoned about 80km away in Hamilton.

• The accused was arrested in an empty worker's cabin on Friday night, following a tip-off from the public. The gun used in the attack is yet to be found. Police said they were hoping to speak to drivers who were on the road near where the campervan was dumped on Friday.

Originally from Nirranda near Port Campbell on Victoria's Great Ocean Road, McKinnon was a surfer and musician. Lots of people had lots of nice things to say about him. One of six kids, his sister Emmeline McKinnon said he was their mum’s favourite. “The worst thing was telling my mother... We’re just going to miss him a lot,” she said. His family said he’d been working as a carpenter in Hobart and he was in New Zealand to see Buckley and to surf. Buckley, a midwife at Middlemore Hospital in South Auckland, had been engaged to McKinnon since 2017. In a note released to Nine News, Buckley said McKinnon was “the light and love of my life”.



With the eyes of the world upon them, demonstrators in Hong Kong were out in their hundreds-of-thousands yesterday. And after weeks of violent clashes with police and threats from China hanging over their heads, the weekend’s protest activities were relatively peaceful. Reports said organisers were hoping for a large turnout to show their movement against what they see as an erosion of freedoms to China still has broad supportfrom Hongkongers. Meanwhile, some Coalition MPs yesterday expressed their concern about the influence the Chinese Communist Party has on Aussie uni campuses. It follows several recent clashes between pro-Hong Kong and Chinese nationalist demonstrators. Federal Education Minister Dan Tehan said the government took foreign interference "incredibly seriously” and it was working with the unis.


PORTLAND PROTESTS - Thirteen people were arrested when left-wing anti-fascist demonstrators (known as antifa) clashed with a far-right rally in Portland, Oregon on Saturday. Despite being known as a progressive city, Oregon has become a battleground for political extremists. And while US President Donald Trump didn’t have anything to say about the alt-right, he tweeted his views about the far-left. The only bright spot in this story - Portland’s police chief’s name is Danielle Outlaw…

AFGHAN BOMBING - Islamic State says it was behind the bombing of a wedding hall in Kabul that left 63 people dead and injured more than 180 on Saturday, making it one of the most deadly this year. The groom and bride survived, but of what was supposed to be a happy day, the groom said; "I lost my brother, I lost my friends, I lost my relatives. I will never see happiness in my life again." The Taliban, which is negotiating with the US on its withdrawal from the war-weary country, condemned the attack.

EPSTEIN DEATH RULING - New York’s Chief Medical Examiner has ruledthat accused child abuser and trafficker Jeffrey Epstein's cause of death was suicide*. Friday’s announcement puts to bed the conspiracy theories, officials said.

*Need help?


Federal Treasurer Josh Frydenberg certainly does, despite the jibes that the federal government has dragged its heels on responding to the report that was handed to it more than six months ago. Reports this morning say Frydenberg will today outline an 'implementation road map' to deal with 50 of the 54 recommendations directed at it in the coming year. Frydenberg said it would be the "biggest shake-up" of the sector (including banks, financial advisers and superannuation) in 30 years. The Coalition's declaration that it’s getting on with things comes as Newspoll registered a fall in support - the Liberals/Nationals dropped two points but still lead Labor 51:49 on a two-party preferred basis.


Seven West Media boss Tim Worner resigned on Friday, and former Network Ten MD James Warburton is taking over. Sounds simple but Friday’s announcement comes with a lot of baggage… Worner’s affair with employee Amber Harrison was a big story in 2016, but he kept his job. Meanwhile, Warburton was taken to court by Seven when he left to go to Ten way back in 2011. Reports say the company, which includes commercial TV network Seven, and publishers Pacific Magazines and The West Australian, is struggling on the financial front. We’ll know what that looks like when it reports its 2018-19 results tomorrow.


The rain-affected second test at Lord’s has ended in a draw. A sedate result, but it was a fierce duel between former captain Steve Smith and English fast-bowler Jofra Archer that lit up cricket fans yesterday. Under assault from the fastest ever bowling recorded by an English bowler, Smith was hit with a painful ball to the arm. A couple of overs later, Smith was hit by a ball to his neck in scenes that reminded Aussies of the tragedy that killed Phillip Hughes. Smith left the field but came back later to score 92 and earn praise from many - and the boos of some. He failed a concussion test overnight and was subbed out, and there's a question mark over whether he'll be fit for the third test starting on Thursday.

And while we have you… From the highs of last weekend’s record defeat of New Zealand’s All Blacks to the lows of Saturday night’s thumping at their hands, hopefully the Wallabies got some tips on consistency over a post-game drink with their opponents.


Bad luck. Even if you’re the President of the United States, Greenland would like you to know that it’s not for sale


Company Earnings Results - BlueScope Steel; Lendlease; NIB Health

World Humanitarian Day

Afghanistan’s Independence Day

World Photography Day

Anniversary of Coco Chanel’s birthday (1883)

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