Squiz Today / 31 August 2023

Squiz Today – Thursday, 31 August

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Squiz Today Podcast

Fitting into the way you do your news day. 

Today’s listen time: 9.30 minutes

12 / 19
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7 / 15
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Squiz Sayings

“When it started heading north of $5, I was ‘hang on a minute, this is quite a bit of money for a sausage roll.’”

Said Kiwi John Bredican, who has taken it upon himself to keep an eye on prices of the popular item around the country despite not being a “massive fan” of the treat himself. The highest price he’s seen is $14.50, and that cafe says its sausage rolls are “made with love”…

Mark your calendar…

It’s official: PM Anthony Albanese yesterday announced that Australia’s referendum on whether or not to amend the Constitution to establish an Indigenous Voice to Parliament will be held on Saturday, 14 October. That’s just over 6 weeks away, just in case you’re counting…

Here’s the exact wording of the Yes/No question you’ll see on the voting paper when it comes time to lodge your response. What we don’t have is an outline from the Albanese Government on the specifics of how the Voice will work – but we do have the principles from the First Nations Referendum Working Group. Albanese says the details are something politicians will decide if Aussies vote ‘Yes’. But before we get to that, 2 things must happen with this referendum. There has to be a national majority of voters – more than 50% of all Aussies – voting ‘Yes’. And a majority of states – so at least 4 of the 6 states – have to have a majority of their residents supporting it. Voters in the ACT and the Northern Territory don’t count on that second front – their vote goes towards the national total. It’s called a double majority

Albanese wants the country to vote ‘Yes’, and yesterday, he described the referendum as “a once-in-a-generation chance to bring our country together”. He’s encouraging Aussies not to “close the door on an idea that came from Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people themselves”. But Coalition leader Peter Dutton says the Voice is not the way forward. This week, he said, “if the government gets it wrong – as many people believe they will – you can’t undo the Constitution”. And outside of Canberra, plenty are speaking up. Prominent Indigenous campaigner/AFL executive Tanya Hosch says Indigenous Aussies want to have a say in changing “life-altering policies that have made hardships seem insurmountable”. But leading Indigenous ‘No’ campaigner Warren Mundine says government bodies shouldn’t be trusted to improve the lives of Indigenous Aussies. With the ‘No’ campaign ahead in the polls, it’s on…

The countdown to the Voice to Parliament referendum is on, so our latest Squiz Shortcut gets you across the key arguments of the ‘Yes’ and ‘No’ cases and what could happen next.


Squiz the Rest

Ukraine attacks deep into Russia

Ukraine is stepping up its drone attacks inside Russia, destroying 2 military planes and sparking a big fire in a city some 600km from its border. Mikhail Vedernikov, the governor of the city of Pskov, posted footage of the strike and claimed the Russian military  “was repelling” a bigger drone attack on the airport. Using uncrewed aircraft to cause damage inside Russia is becoming an increasingly common tactic, with reports of a series of attacks across different cities over the past 48 hours. And speaking of air attacks, Russian officials have told the manufacturer of the plane Wagner mercenary boss Yevgeny Prigozhin was in when it crashed a week ago that it won’t investigate under international aviation rules. Video footage of the crash site shows it’s already been bulldozed and the debris removed. A Kremlin spokesman says they are looking into whether the plane was downed on purpose.

World News

Prices are down down

In a sea of tough economic news, there was a glimpse of the light at the end of the tunnel… Inflation cooled to 4.9% in July – a fall of 0.5% in a month and a better result than economists predicted. Remember that comes off a high of 8.4% in December – so the sharp fall is expected to take the pressure off the Reserve Bank when it makes its next call on interest rates on Tuesday next week. The good news for Aussies feeling the crunch – petrol (-7.6%) and fresh produce prices (-5.4%) came down in July, but the one sticky wicket is housing. Rents are up 7.6% over the past year, and there’s no relief on electricity with costs up 6% in the month. Mortgage holders take heart: the markets reckon official interest rates will remain at 4.1% for the rest of 2023. Cross your fingers, please…

Australian News Economy

No commento

Speculation over Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk’s grip on power continues to build – and now, the holidaying political leader has requested privacy after The Australian tracked her down in Naples, Italy. She said (paywall) “I don’t want to say anything … I have got some health issues.”. Palaszczuk later issued a statement saying she is “entitled to leave” and that she’ll be back on the job in a couple of weeks. It’s in focus because last week, she was under pressure over new youth crime laws that experts say breach young Queenslanders’ human rights, and Labor’s popularity in the state has been falling this year as pundits eye an election in October next year. Liberal National Party leader David Crisafulli has been making hay as the sun shines on Palaszczuk in Italy, and her deputy (and now Acting Premier) Stephen Miles continues to dismiss the leadership chatter as “rumours and gossip”.

AusPol Australian News

Netflix and leave

Many Aussies have given a big yeah/nah to Netflix, with the streaming giant’s subscriber numbers down for the first time since it launched here in 2015. While an estimated 6.1 million people are still paying up, subs are down 3% in the past year, according to a study that found Amazon Prime (+9%), Binge (+22%), and Paramount+ (+41%) are tracking well with local couch potatoes (and we say that with affection…). There are a few factors at play… Netflix’s password sharing crackdown. Cost of living pressures. More options for streaming. That would do it… It’s also worth noting Disney+ might also be close to peaking in Oz with 1% growth over the past 12 months… But in heartening news for the battling entertainment bohemoths: even though people are more budget-conscious, they are more likely to do without takeaway, clothing and booze before parting ways with their precious subscriptions.

Australian News Business & Finance Technology

Telling whoppers

Burger King is facing a lawsuit claiming its famous Whopper burgers are smaller than they appear in ads. A bunch of hangry customers reckon the in-store menu pics show ingredients “overflowing the bun”, making it appear there’s a whole lot more meat and other stuff than there actually is. Burger King has tried to get the case thrown out – saying it wasn’t required to deliver burgers “like the picture”, but a US District Court Judge says a jury should decide. Maccas, Wendy’s and Taco Bell are also facing similar suits. The fast food giants might be heartened by the infamous Subway case from 2017 when the court said lawyers shouldn’t get paid for arguing the signature “footlong” sub pulled up an inch too short…

Business & Finance Quirky News World News

Apropos of nothing

Taylor Swift’s reputation for record-breaking continues after the megastar became the first female artist to reach 100 million monthly listeners on Spotify. The Weeknd is still the top artist with more than 110 million monthly listens, which is good for him now his acting career is in the lurch… 

The Barbie movie has beaten Harry Potter And The Deathly Hallows – Part 2 to become the Warner Bros studio’s highest-grossing film ever. The pink one is set to overtake The Super Mario Bros Movie to become the most successful film of 2023.

Ultramarathoner Piotr Babis has smashed the record for the fastest time to run the 230km Larapinta Trail in Central Oz by 5 hours. The runner experienced hallucinations during the 54-hour run – and then celebrated his success by going on a 6-day hike…

Quirky News

Squiz the Day

11.36am (AEST) – The rare ‘blue moon’ supermoon peaks

12.30pm (AEST) – Employment Minister Tony Burke addresses the National Press Club – Canberra

National Days for Malaysia, Kyrgyzstan and Trinidad and Tobago

Daffodil Day (Cancer Council)

International Overdose Awareness Day

International Day for People of African Descent

Company Results – Harvey Norman; Australia Post

Birthdays for Van Morrison (1945), Richard Gere (1949), and Saudi crown prince Mohammed bin Salman (1985)

Anniversary of:
• the Irish Republican Army (IRA) declaring a ceasefire in 1994, which led to the Good Friday Agreement of 1998
• the deaths of Arthur Phillip (1814) and Princess Diana (1997)

Squiz the Day

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