Squiz Today / 18 September 2018

Squiz Today – Tuesday, 18 September


“Two hours, one minute, 39 seconds.”

Is how long it took Kenyan runner Eliud Kipchoge to run the Berlin Marathon on the weekend. He’s set the athletics world on fire with the prospect of clocking a sub-two-hour time for the 42.195km race. Takes us that long pick something to watch on TV…


Health Minister Greg Hunt has called in the federal food safety agency to examine the recent cases of strawberry sabotage to identify shortcomings in the supply chain. Calling the contamination an attack on consumers and the agriculture sector, Hunt said the government’s job was to “protect the public and keep them safe."

It is serious.

• With cases already identified in Queensland, NSW, Victoria and South Australia, new cases in Tassie and WA are being investigated.

• Queensland strawberry growers met with the government yesterday to discuss the impact. “It's the farmers, the people who supply them, the packaging people, the truckies with families to support, who suddenly lose their jobs... it's far-reaching," said Adrian Schultz from the growers’ association.

• Growers are hustling to put metal detectors into their packing sheds. Farmers pointed out that it won’t prevent something happening between the supplier and the supermarket checkout…

• One of the big Kiwi food distributors yesterday stopped importing Aussie strawbs.

• A 62yo woman was caught putting a metal rod into a banana in a supermarket in Mackay in Queensland. Authorities said she has mental health issues.

• Despite all that we’re being encouraged to buy the fruit. Just cut your strawbs up before consuming them is the advice.

There are claims that social media can fuel a crime wave but others say it’s nothing new and that “crime waves tend to follow fairly predictable patterns and usually run their course within two to three months.” But when it comes to sabotaging food and other things we consume, Australia has a relatively clean record. The most notable event of the last 20 years is probably the headache-capsule tampering case of 2000 when Panadol caps were laced with strychnine. Yikes…


NSW South Coast Liberal MP Ann Sudmalis has announced she will not contest the next election and told Parliament last night that state member Gareth Ward was guilty of the three Bs - “bullying, betrayal and backstabbing”. “He doesn’t just get even, he annihilates anyone who opposes him,” she said. Sudmalis said she thinks PM Scott Morrison is tops and her decision to go has no connection with his rise. Her departure makes it hard for the Coalition to win the seat at the next election with a margin of less than 1%. She is the latest Liberal woman to say the party’s crook with female representation set to plummet to a 25 year low.

And while we have you… Former PM Tony Abbott received a meh-grade endorsement from local party members to be their candidate at the next election. Abbott won 68% of the vote against… an empty chair. Reports say it's another example of factional warring within the NSW Liberal Party.

South Korean President Moon Jae-in will cross the border today to meet North Korea’s leader Kim Jong Un. It is the third summit the pair has had this year, and the first to be held in Pyongyang for more than a decade. While Kim has not demonstrated a commitment to denuclearisation in a way the US wanted, Moon says he wants “to find a middle ground” between that and the North’s desire for security. But ultimately, “What I want to achieve is peace. I mean irreversible, permanent peace that is not shaken by international politics.” Dream, believe, succeed…

Authorities yesterday recovered more than 30 bodies from a northern Philippine village after a landslide caused by Typhoon Mangkhut. Officials believe the Philippine death toll will top 100 and it’s believed at least four people have been killed in China. And if you want to get a sense of how big Mangkhut was, check out this great New York Times link.

And Florence has taken 23 lives in the US. Authorities are concerned about rising flood waters with more rain on the way. The North Carolina city of Wilmington has been cut off from the rest of the state and authorities are airlifting in food and water.

The search for Lynette Dawson at her former home in Bayview on Sydney’s Northern Beaches ended yesterday without uncovering any new leads. Her family said they were grateful to police and the current property owner for the comprehensive search of the site where many believed her body was buried. Police said the search included sniffer dogs, rock fragment sifting, and draining of the property’s tanks.

Former NSW Premier Mike Baird is the new boss of National Australia Bank’s retail operations. That means he's responsible for the banking services that every day people use. Many say it's an audition for the top job that might become vacant in a couple of years when big boss Andrew Thorburn is tipped to go. NAB found itself on the wrong side of the banking Royal Commission amid accusations of mistreating customers. Pundits say rebuilding the bank’s reputation will be a lot like running a political campaign – which would make Baird eminently qualified for the gig.

New York magazine’s interview with Soon Yi Previn – the daughter of actress Mia Farrow and wife of Farrow’s former partner/film director Woody Allen - created quite a stir yesterday. Previn has not really previously addressed the controversy surrounding her marriage, and it's clear she does not subscribe to the ‘if you don't have anything nice to say…" theory as she took aim at her mother. Siblings Ronan and Dylan Farrow defended their mother. Stay tuned for Mia's response…


10.00am (AEST) - 70th Primetime Emmy Awards

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

Yom Kippur – begins at sunset today and ends at sunset tomorrow

World Water Monitoring Day

Anniversary of Jimi Hendrix death (1970)

The Squiz Archive

Want to check out Squiz Today from the archive?

Get the Squiz Today newsletter

It's a quick read and doesn't take itself too seriously. Get on it.