Squiz Today / 21 March 2022

Squiz Today – Monday, 21 March

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Today’s listen time: 9 minutes

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Squiz Sayings

“Sometime’s yellow is just yellow”

Said Russia’s space agency Roscosmos of the bright suits their 3 cosmonauts were wearing when they arrived for a stint on the International Space Station on Saturday. Some thought the men’s ensembles were a sign of support for Ukraine taking the war to new heights…

Labor wins the South Australian showdown


South Australia has a new state government and will get a new opposition leader with Labor making a convincing return in Saturday’s election. Steve Marshall’s Liberals became the first government to lose office since the start of the pandemic with an almost 7% swing against them. And Labor, which has turfed out the Liberals after one term, retakes the reins having been in power for 16 years before their defeat in 2018. 


There’s still 45% of the vote to count and 8 seats that are considered to be in doubt, but what is certain is the Liberals had a shocker with Deputy Premier Dan van Holst Pellekaan losing his seat, and Marshall’s is touch and go. The prediction is that Labor could win 28 seats – that would leave the Liberals with 15 and independents with 4. That gives incoming premier Peter Malinauskas a buffer above the 24 seats needed to control the 47-seat House of Assembly. Delivering his victory speech on Saturday night, Malinauskas said Marshall’s phone call to admit defeat was “utterly generous, gracious and it was done with the class that we have become incredibly familiar with”. And in 20 years time, he said he wants people to say “that this generation decided not just to think about the next 4 years, but for the next generation, to live out on that truly egalitarian Australian ideal that we care for others more than we care for ourselves.” 


Well, it depends on who you’re talking to… Federal Liberal MPs yesterday said the South Oz election was fought on state issues focused on health and the Marshall Government’s management of the pandemic. The polling pointed to trouble for the Liberals because of the  pressure put on the state’s hospitals as Omicron cases surged after the border was opened in November. But Federal Labor figures say PM Morrison is unpopular in South Oz, and that he was a drag on Marshall’s reelection chances. “I saw numbers that suggested that one in 2 South Australians – one in 2 – were less likely to vote for Steven Marshall when they were reminded that he and Scott Morrison were of the same party,” said Labor/South Oz Senator Penny Wong yesterday. But they would all say that, wouldn’t they… There’s only one way of finding out what it truly means at the federal level, and that’s via an election that’s due to be held by 21 May.


Squiz the Rest

Visas for Ukrainians

Australia will chuck in an additional $50 million in military and humanitarian aid for Ukraine, as well as temporary humanitarian visas for people who have fled the violence, PM Scott Morrison announced yesterday. The visas will allow an uncapped number of Ukrainians to stay for up to 3 years and work, study and access Medicare here. So far, 5,000 have been granted visas with 750 here already. Oz will also ship coal to Ukrainian power stations, and has banned exports of alumina to Russia – as the name suggests, it’s a key ingredient in making aluminium. Australia provides 20% of Russia’s supply. This morning, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has told CNN that he is ready to negotiate with Russian President Vladimir Putin. “I was ready for the last 2 years, and I think that without negotiations, we cannot end this war,” he said. Also on the agenda this week: US President Joe Biden will travel to Europe for a series of emergency summits.

World News

Wong calls for holt to hostilities

Senior Labor Senator Penny Wong yesterday called for politics to “take a backseat” as mourners prepare to gather for the funeral of Senator Kimberly Kitching in Melbourne this afternoon. The 52yo Labor representative died suddenly on 10 March, and since then, a lot has been said about the stress she was under. That includes claims that she was bullied and isolated by her colleagues including Wong, Kristina Keneally and Katy Gallagher. On Friday, the trio released a joint statement hitting back at the accusations, but one report Wong did not deny was that in 2019 she made a snarky remark about Kitching not having children. Wong says she apologised to Kitching, but said she didn’t accept it was bullying. Asked about it yesterday, Morrison said Labor had questions to answer and renewed his call for Anthony Albanese to launch an investigation. Reporters say it is those close to Kitching who are feeding them the info about her treatment by her colleagues because they want those responsible to be held to account.


An Antarctic heatwave

Yes, you read that right… The coldest location on the planet has experienced a heatwave in an event that’s smashed records and shocked scientists. Temperatures over the eastern Antarctic ice sheet soared way above the average last week, with parts of the icy continent hovering about 40C above normal for 3 days and counting. Temperatures have been hovering around -18C to -12C, which is warm by polar standards. “This event is completely unprecedented and upended our expectations about the Antarctic climate system,” said French meteorologist Jonathan Wille. He says the warm conditions were spurred by a narrow corridor of water vapour in the sky, which brought a big dump of rain and heat that has spread across the continent. This type of weather system has occurred before, but not to this extent or intensity. It’s difficult to attribute this one event to climate change, experts say, but it’s thought to be behind the broader conditions for such an event.

Weather World News

A trio of c’mon Aussie…

  • Olympics moguls champion Jakara Anthony has become Oz’s most successful winter sports athlete in a single season after winning her 12th medal at the women’s moguls World Cup final in Megeve, France. Anthony won the dual mogul’s event in Italy last weekend and followed up with 2 silvers this weekend.
  • In women’s cricket, Oz has maintained its 100% win record at the one-dayer World Cup with a tight 6-wicket win over India in Auckland. The victory means the Aussies have made it through to the semis that start on Wednesday next week. 
  • And one for Drive to Survive fans, F1 racing is back with the Bahrain Grand Prix done and dusted this morning. Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc has won ahead of teammate Carlos Sainz and 7-time world champ Lewis Hamilton. Aussie Daniel Ricciardo improved 4 places on his starting position to finish 14th – he was in COVID iso until late last week. And the result after a nasty end to the 2021 season: Mercedes claimed 27 points to Red Bull’s 0…

Chaos for the Cambridges in the Caribbean

That’s being a bit dramatic, but alliteration called… Prince William and Kate have arrived in Belize for their first joint overseas trip since the start of the pandemic. The week-long visit, which will also include stops in Jamaica and the Bahamas to mark the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee, had been seen by royal watchers as an attempt to shore up support for the monarchy after Barbados cut ties last year and became a republic. But the trip took an unexpected turn just before the Cambridges arrived when a dispute broke out between villagers at a cacao farm and a conservation charity that Prince William is a patron of. Belize TV reported that the chair of the Indian Creek village Sebastian Shol said the tension surrounded the “meaning of consent in the context of communal land rights, rights to lands that were expunged in the colonial period by the British,“ adding “we don’t want them to land on our land.” A spokesperson for Kensington Palace said the visit would be moved to a different cacao-producing village.

World News

Apropos of Nothing

The distinctive black Carnaby cockatoo has a new lease on life, thanks to some “cockatubes”. Decades of land clearing has destroyed their natural habitat, but now the artificial nests are proving to be “perfect” artificial places to breed. 

Speaking of birds, the Queensland hen known simply as “Chicken” has become a celebrity in the state’s Southern Downs region. Chicken goes storm chasing with her photographer owner, you see. And the subsequent Life of Chicken Facebook page now has quite a following… 

And a Kiwi couple have been through a harrowing ordeal. They thought they had discovered the world’s largest potato, wand sent a sample to the Guinness World Records people. The response wasn’t what they’d hoped – they’d grown a ‘gourd’. Yeah, we had to Google it too…

Quirky News

Squiz the Day

4.00pm (AEDT) – Men’s Cricket 3rd Test – Australia v Pakistan – Punjab

SA Governor Frances Adamson swears in incoming SA Premier Peter Malinauskas – Adelaide

A funeral for Labor senator Kimberly Kitching – Melbourne

A 2-week inquest into the deaths of Hannah Clarke and her 3 children begins – Brisbane

ABS Release – Physical Activity 2020-21; Diabetes 2020-21; Asthma 2020-21; Smoking 2020-21; Alcohol Consumption 2020-21; Long-term Health Conditions 2020-21

Harmony Day

International Day of the Elimination of Racial Discrimination

World Down Syndrome Day

International Day of Forests

International Colour Day

World Poetry Day

Birthdays for actors Gary Oldman (1958) and Matthew Broderick (1962)

Anniversary of:
• the death of Pocahontas (1617)
• Persia officially being renamed Iran (1935)
• the wedding of actors Humphrey Bogart and Lauren Bacall (1945)
• Ethiopia abolishing its monarchy after 3,000 years (1975)
• Russia annexed the Crimean Peninsula (2014)

Squiz the Day

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