Squiz Today / 18 June 2019

Squiz Today – Tuesday, 18 June


“What do you enjoy more, making money or spending it?”

Is the question author/entrepreneur Rafael Badziag asks to separate the millionaires from the billionaires. And the secret to being mega wealthy? Frugality. Which means this start-up is heading towards uber success any moment now…


The father of missing 18yo Belgian backpacker Theo Hayez yesterday made a heartbreaking plea for information about his son’s disappearance from the NSW coastal haven of Byron Bay. Laurent Hayez, who arrived in Australia late last week, asked the Facebook-owned encrypted messaging service WhatsApp to give investigators access to his account in the hope it reveals details of where Theo was on the night he disappeared.

• Theo was at the tail end of his eight-month-long trip to Australia. He was last seen leaving the Cheeky Monkey’s bar in Byron Bay at 11pm on 31 May when he set out in the direction of his hostel. Reports say he was last active on WhatsApp and Facebook’s Messenger app early on 1 June. And his phone was active around Cape Byron - at the other end of the beach from his hostel - at around 1.40am.

• But he was not reported missing until 6 June when he was meant to check out of his hostel. His personal belongings, including his passport, were found untouched in his room.

• Now well into its second week, the land, air and water search involving police, volunteers, abseilers, helicopters and drones has not delivered many clues as to his whereabouts leaving police baffled.

Late yesterday, WhatsApp said it is working with authorities - but they can’t hand over encrypted messages which can only be deciphered by the sender and recipient. On the weekend, Theo’s mother Vinciane Delforge said she hoped he was not around because he "met a girl and had a fling", but acknowledged that wasn't his style. Police said the search would continue because they "do not want to leave any stone unturned."



Before Sudan plunged into crisis when the military killed at least 118 pro-civilian-rule demonstrators earlier this month, dictator Omar Hassan al-Bashir had been ousted after 30 years in power. His removal from office in April was a big deal for the African nation. And on Sunday, al-Bashir was spotted for the first time leaving prison to be formally charged with corruption and money laundering. Critics thought he was being kept in luxury, not the notorious jail where he’d sent his enemies… But insiders say he is safe from extradition to the International Criminal Court to face accusations of genocide and war crimes over his role in the conflict in Darfur starting in the early 2000s. Meanwhile, al-Bashir’s former military enforcer General Mohamed Hamdan seems set on claiming control for himself. The more things change, the more they stay the same?

And while we have you… Egypt’s former president Mohammed Morsi has died after suffering what’s thought to be a heart attack during his espionage trial. He had been in custody since mass protests saw him and his Muslim Brotherhood kicked out of power in 2013. The 67yo became the country’s first democratically elected leader in 2012.


Boeing’s CEO Dennis Muilenburg yesterday said the company erred in its handling of a safety feature that could pit pilots in a losing battle to keep its trouble-plagued 737 Max plane in the air. And the company's communications weren't consistent, which has undermined trust, he said. The global fleet of 737 Max planes was grounded after the Lion Air crash in Indonesia in October last year that killed 189 people, and the Ethiopia Airlines crash in March that claimed 157 lives.


Housing auctions are back, baby. With this month’s interest rate cut and the federal election out of the way, the weekend's strong auction results, particularly in Sydney and Melbourne, shows buyers and sellers are feeling more confident, according to analysts. The weekend saw Sydney record its best clearance rate in two years with 75% of homes up for auction sold. Melbourne also did better with an almost 68% clearance rate. More properties went to auction in Adelaide and Canberra than this time last year, but fewer were on the auction block in Brisbane and Perth. And there were no auctions this weekend in Tassie. Not a single one.


No, we’re not talking about the tan sported by Julian the “tangerine-tinted buffoon” from Bridget Jones’ Diary… We're talking about a form of artificial intelligence that can create video and audio content to make it seem like someone's saying something they aren't. For example, Facebook's Mark Zuckerberg was recently stung with a clip circulating on his own platform with him saying; “The more you express yourself, the more we own you.” And yesterday, Game of Thrones’ character Jon Snow apologising for the ending to the series was doing the rounds. All fun and games, but many are worried about its potential application for bad deeds. Here’s a good way to dip your toe in the deep fake water…


Perhaps better known the more youngish amongst us as CNN journo Anderson Cooper’s mum, Gloria Vanderbilt was from an era of old American money and glamour. A ‘poor little rich girl’, Vanderbilt’s father, who was heir to a railway fortune, died when she was little. And by the time she was 21yo, she'd already been married and divorced - the first of four rounds on the matrimonial merry-go-round. She found commercial success as a designer, particularly of jeans in the 80s. She was also an artist, poet and writer. "Gloria Vanderbilt was an extraordinary woman, who loved life, and lived it on her own terms," said Cooper. She was recently diagnosed with stomach cancer and died yesterday aged 95yo. And some pictures of her very public life are here.


Spice Girl Mel B said she'd jumped the gun on the weekend by announcing an Australian tour in February. But she's hoping she can get the others onboard. ‘Say you’ll be there’ was the refrain from fans…


5.00am (AEST) - Women's World Cup Soccer - Australia v Jamaica

ABS Data Release - Residential Property Price Indexes: Eight Capital Cities, March

Sir Paul McCartney’s birthday (1942)

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