Squiz Today / 15 November 2022

Squiz Today – Tuesday, 15 November

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Squiz Today Podcast

Helping you along your way. 

Today’s listen time: 9.30 minutes

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Squiz Sayings

“Tie the hair on my chinny chin chin.”

Is the headline one Twitter user suggested for a story about a group claiming to have broken the Guinness World Record for the longest beard chain. The facial fuzz fanatics gathered in Wyoming to clip their beards together, creating a 45.72m chain – more than double the record set in 2007 of 19.05m.

As the G20 kicks off, Albanese gets a meeting with Xi

The 17th meeting of the G20 – aka the Group of 20 – kicks off in Bali today after quite a build-up during a year fraught with tensions and troubles. As the global forum promoting cooperation between the world’s biggest economies, and a formal agenda covering topics like ‘digital transformation’, ‘global health architecture’ and ‘sustainable energy transition’. But what’s occupying leaders’ minds are inflation rates running at 40-year highs and soaring energy prices as the war in Ukraine and China’s ‘zero COVID’ policies destabilise the world’s recovery from the health and economic disruptions of the pandemic.

So there’s the formal schedule of official meetings, but there’s a fair bit of scepticism that what’s discussed will have much of an impact on the things ailing the world. Yesterday, the Washington Post was one that said the vibe from people who watch these things closely was that the fracturing inside the group with Russia and China going their own ways means the G20 has “devolved into a rudderless talking shop that may struggle even to produce an official communique.” Ouch… But there are some who see merit in the meeting forcing the big-name world leaders together to talk about the big issues. And with everything going on, it’s likely to be the sideline 1:1 chats that are just as – if not more – important as the formal agenda and what’s in the final press release. Like US President Joe Biden and Chinese President Xi Jinping’s epic 3-hour meeting last night… 

Well, PM Anthony Albanese is meeting with China’s President Xi Jinping today. It’s been 6 years since an Aussie PM has had the opportunity to get some proper face time with the powerful leader. From ongoing trade sanctions to the detention of Aussies Cheng Lei and Yang Hengjun, there are some matters where an in-person meeting can’t be replaced with an email/video call… Albanese has already had a sit-down meeting with President Biden, and over the next couple of days, he’ll mingle with the likes of India’s Narendra Modi, the UK’s Rishi Sunak, and his mate/French President Emmanual Macron. And the airport-hotel-conference room-airport fun doesn’t end in Bali… Next, it’s off to Thailand for Friday/Saturday’s APEC Economic Leaders’ Summit.


Squiz the Rest

Flooding and storms continue to batter Oz

Towns in the Central West of NSW have been hit again by severe flooding, with heavy rain causing full rivers to flood, cutting off thousands of residents. Forbes, Parkes, Cowra, Canowindra, Blayney and Young were drenched, and rescue helicopters and Defence personnel helped out in the worst affected areas yesterday. NSW Emergency Services Minister Steph Cooke said over 100 rescues were made between midnight and 5am on Monday in Eugowra to get people from the roofs of buildings… That means from “a population of 700, more than one in 5 residents” had to be rescued by chopper or boat. In Victoria, flash flooding also hit several regions, leading to dozens of rescues. And South Australia also experienced the worst power outages since 2016 after storms swept across the state, leaving 163,000 homes and businesses without electricity. Many will be waiting until Wednesday for it to be restored.

Australian News Weather

War crime claims in Kherson

Celebrations in the liberated Ukrainian city of Kherson after 8 months of Russian occupation over the weekend have given way to some devastating assessments of the extent of the death and damage there. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky visited the area overnight – he says investigators have so far uncovered evidence of more than 400 war crimes being committed. Residents – who will be without electricity and running water for some time due to damaged infrastructure – also say that the Russians heavily looted the city, stealing household goods, valuable art, and even animals from Kherson’s zoo. Moscow denies its soldiers deliberately target civilians. Zelensky says the liberation of the southern city is the “beginning of the end of the war”, but NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg has warned that “we should not make the mistake of underestimating Russia.”

World News

Spending it up in November

From Christmas decorations already being put up in shopping centres to inboxes full of shopping deals, November is the new December for end-of-year retail spending. Roy Morgan economists forecast that Aussies will spend up to $6.2 billion during this year’s Black Friday/Cyber Monday sales in the last week of November – an increase of $200 million on 2021, and more than last year’s $3.1 billion forecast for Boxing Day sales. Australian Retailers Association boss Paul Zahra says the expected growth in November sales comes as shoppers try to snap up the best possible deals ahead of rising interest rates and supply chain pressures. Possible delays have also seen Australia Post warn Aussies to send their holiday packages sooner rather than later. And soz to those hoping for a Lamborghini under the tree this year – the Italian luxury car is sold out until 2024 after a bumper year. A Ferrari it is, then…

Australian News Business & Finance

Global population hits 8 billion today

The United Nations reckons today’s the day Earth’s population ticks over 8 billion people… And it also predicts we’ll hit 9.7 billion by 2050. Yikes… They’re massive numbers, but the rate of population growth has been slowing since the 1960s. The UN says the population will reach about 10.4 billion people in the 2080s and begin falling next century. But the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation thinks that peak will happen sooner, pointing to dwindling fertility rates across the world. Researcher Amanda Smith says their modelling suggests fertility would “continue to decline through the end of the century in many countries”. Back in the 1950s, women were having, on average, 5 kids each, but that number has fallen to 2 today. All of that means the world’s population is ageing – and experts say there needs to be a “massive cultural change” to care for all of the oldies the world will have on its hands…

World News

Taylor Swift sweeps MTV European Music Awards

The accolades keep on coming for Taylor Swift as she took home 4 awards from the MTV Europe Music Awards in Germany. The 32yo (who was missing the lining of her skirt…) won best artist, best pop, best video and best long-form video for her hit All Too Well. Also having a good night were double-award winners Nicki Minaj (best song and best hip-hop) and French DJ/record producer David Guetta (best electronic and best collaboration). Heartthrob Harry Styles took out the best live category, while South Korean K-Pop mega-group BTS won in the biggest fans category. And the crowd went nuts for Eurovision winners Kalush Orchestra who performed Stefania in an arena glowing in their national colours. The whole shebang was hosted by newlyweds Taika Waititi and Rita Ora, who won best look. You can be the judge of that once you’ve checked out the red carpet gallery


Apropos of Nothing

Painstaking work has begun on “unveiling” a nude art painting by 17th century Italian painter Artemisia Gentileschi. Covered up 70 years after it was competed in 1616, art restorers aren’t able to remove the beautiful woman’s draped scarf without damaging the artwork, so they’re creating a digital image of the original version instead. 

If you’ve ever been cranky about having to wait for your food order, at least it wasn’t 30 years… That’s the wait time for a box of Kobe beef croquettes from a Japanese butcher shop. The deep-fried dumplings blew up on the internet in the 2000s, and since then the waitlist has continued to grow. 

And speaking of long-running sagas, a Welsh man has brought an end to a 20-year joke after taking down a fake airport sign he put up in 2002. Costing him £1,500/year to maintain, it was one pricey gag…

Quirky News

Squiz the Day

7.30pm (AEDT) – Women’s Soccer – Australia v Thailand – Gosford

G20 summit begins (until 16 November) – Bali, Indonesia

The world’s population is set to hit 8 billion

Independence Day in Palestine

ABS Data Release – Overseas Arrivals and Departures, September

Birthdays for ABBA singer Anni-Frid “Frida” Lyngstad (1945), shoe designer Jimmy Choo (1948) and actor Shailene Woodley (1991)

Anniversary of:
• the ousting of Zimbabwean dictator Robert Mugabe (2017)
• the death of rapper Lil Peep at 21yo (2017)

Squiz the Day

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