Squiz Today / 29 July 2019

Squiz Today – Monday, 29 July


“He is a doer.”

Said the deputy mayor Ian Woodcock from the drought-stricken town of Walgett, NSW after basketball international Patty Mills turned up last week to buy the town some water while on his honeymoon/tour of remote Indigenous communities. That’s one town that will be going for the Boomers in next month’s World Cup


Australia learned yesterday that Commonwealth gold medal swimmer Shayna Jack tested positive to a banned substance during a team training camp in Cairns in late-June. The 20yo freestyler was sent home while with the team in Japan after learning of the positive result on 12 July. At the time, it was spun that Jack would not go to the World Championships in South Korea (which wrapped up last night) for “personal reasons”. Last night it was confirmed her second sample also tested positive to Ligandrol - a substance associated with the development of muscle mass.

Jack issued a statement last night repeating her earlier denial that she “did NOT take this substance knowingly". She said she believes she came into contact with the banned drug via contaminated supplements. And why has she been silent until now? With the World Championships on, she said; "I respect my teammates and my sport too much to take away their moment”. Swimming Australia CEO Leigh Russell said Jack’s positive result was “bitterly disappointing and embarrassing to our team, our sport and our country.” Russell also responded to criticism that the news was not made public for more than two weeks saying only ASADA (the Aussie anti-doping body) or Jack could bring the details into the light. Not true, says a former head of the agency…

Particularly for star Mack Horton who upset the chlorine cart last week by taking a stand against Chinese swimmer Sun Yang (who has failed a doping test in the past). Horton’s refusal to stand on the podium with Sun could have only embarrassed his arch-nemesis more if he’d bombed the medal ceremony from the diving tower... With his standing on ceremony coming more than a week after the administrator knew about Jack’s positive test, some say he was hung out to dry. After earlier refusing to speak to reporters, Horton said he was disappointed by Jack's positive test. “My position remains firm - clean sport must be a priority for all athletes, all sports and all nations,” he said.



In its first reading since the election, The Australian’s Newspoll has PM Scott Morrison’s Coalition on 53 (up 1.5 since the election) against Labor’s 47 (down 1.5) on a two-party preferred basis. And PM Scott Morrison leads Labor leader Anthony Albanese 48:31 in the better PM race. But is it correct? Who knows… With the polls unable to predict the May election result, expect a collective huff from Parliament House today.


To show how remote the area is that authorities are searching to locate suspected killers Bryer Schmegelsky (18yo) and Kam McLeod (19yo), the Royal Canadian Mounted Police tweeted a picture of a polar bear they came across on the weekend. Homes and vacated buildings in the town of Gillam are being searched, and the Air Force has been called in to boost efforts from above. Which is a long way of saying the duo suspected of killing Australian Lucas Fowler, his American girlfriend Chynna Deese and Canadian uni professor Leonard Dyck is ongoing.

And while we have you… Two other young men in trouble are 19yo Americans Gabriel Natale Hjorth and Finnegan Elder. They were arrested on Friday on suspicion of the stabbing murder and attempted extortion of a police officer in Rome. Italy’s Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte said the killing of the newly-married 35yo officer was a “deep wound for the State.”


“Tens of thousands” of pro-democracy protestors have again violently clashed with police in Hong Kong as the fallout continues from the failed attempt to introduce contentious extradition laws. Police have been accused of brutality during the clashes after firing tear gas and rubber bullets at protesters trying to reach the Chinese government's office in the city. And Yuen Long was another focal point - that's where suspected Chinese triads beat protesters, passersby and journalists with sticks last weekend. So far, Hong Kong's government have not involved Chinese troops.

And while we have you… Estimates vary, but reports say more than 1,000 people have been arrested for protesting in Moscow. Sparked by election authorities’ decision to exclude several opposition candidates from running for Moscow’s City Council, it’s been labelled one of the biggest police crackdowns in years.


Jailed in 2009 for his part in the gangland murder of Melbourne crime figure Victor PeirceFaruk Orman was freed on Friday. Orman’s conviction was quashed because his lawyer Nicola Gobbo was also acting as a police informant against him. A Melbourne judge said he’d suffered a “substantial miscarriage of justice”, and experts say he could be in line for a significant compensation payment. Speaking after his release, Orman said; “Many people will think I have come out of prison bitter and angry. I haven't.” Reports say more of Australia’s most high-profile criminals could be set for release from jail thanks to Gobbo’s scandalous dual role in their convictions.


The consumer regulator has outlined 23 recommendations to give users of platforms like Facebook and Google better protections. The ACCC’s chairman Rod Sims said on Friday that he wants to see:

• Clearer notifications when big tech wants to collect, use, or disclose our data.

• A new code of conduct regulating the relationship between digital platforms and traditional media that would give news publishers more revenue for their original content.

• And getting the government to up its game on privacy by reforming the laws.

The mega-tech companies gave responses along the lines that they “take the responsibility of protecting user data and privacy seriously”. Now it’s over to the government to respond to the recommendations.


The heatwave sweeping the northern hemisphere is not the only out-of-the-ordinary event to grip the UK. Drunken seagulls have become a thing with reports of the noted scavengers taking to helping themselves to wine and beer dregs left behind by their human counterparts. According to The Sun, gulls have been spotted vomiting and attacking people - not unlike your average football hooligan... On a related – but infinitely more serious note - police in Devon will today examine a bone feared to belong to Gizmo the chihuahua, whose owner says was snatched from her backyard last week by an aggressive gull. Yikes…


ABS Data Release - Motor Vehicle Census, January 2019

Global Tiger Day

Anniversary of Prince Charles and Lady Diana Spencer’s wedding (1981)

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