Squiz Today / 20 April 2023

Squiz Today – Thursday, 20 April

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Squiz Today Podcast

We’ll give you something to talk about. 

Today’s listen time: 9.20 minutes

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Squiz Sayings

“You could actually see the skin flying off. And then fish would come in and eat it.”

Said a marine scientist of a video capturing a pod of humpback whales exfoliating themselves on the sea floor off the Gold Coast in what’s been dubbed an ‘underwater day spa’. They looked like they were having a whale of a time…

Eclipse lunarcy steals the spotlight

Buckle up – we’re in for a rare solar eclipse today… And by ‘rare’, we mean this particular type of hybrid solar eclipse hasn’t been witnessed in Australia since 1974. Matt Woods from the Perth Observatory – which is live-streaming the event – says it will be a “magical moment”. To get into the scientific specifics… A solar eclipse is when the moon casts a shadow on Earth, blocking/partially blocking the sun. That’s different to a lunar eclipse when Earth casts a shadow over the moon. During ‘hybrid’ solar eclipses, the moon moves in front of the sun and creates a ring of light before moving to a total solar eclipse. They’re particularly special because they only happen a few times per century – making today one for the astronomical history books.

Eclipse enthusiasts – or ‘eclipse chasers’, as they’re known – will tell you Exmouth in Western Oz is the place to be. That’s where 100% of the sun will be hidden at 11.29am local time. And while a lack of sunlight might not be what people usually look for in a coastal tourist town, it’s a boon for Exmouth. Reports say the WA Government has invested about $22 million to improve the area’s infrastructure for the 20,000 interstate and international visitors (and their intense-looking safety gear) flocking in… The rest of the country’s in for a partial eclipse – here’s a rundown of where/how to see it, but to break it down… In Perth, the maximum eclipse (71%) will be visible at 11.20am, Adelaide (21%) at 1.30pm, Darwin (81%) at 1.52pm, Hobart (5%) at 2.06pm, Melbourne (11%) at 2.09pm, Canberra (10%) at 2.22pm, Brisbane (16%) at 2.44pm, and Sydney (10%) at 2.28pm. Note: those times are all local times.

Yep, you read right. Before running outside, there’s a bit of OH&S to cover pre your eclipse viewing… That’s because looking directly at the sun can cause solar retinopathy – that’s permanent vision damage in case you’re a non-optometrist – and a regular pair of sunnies won’t protect you. Here’s a good explanation of the type of glasses you’ll need. But not even some routine safety procedures can dampen the day for those in Exmouth – and fortunately, neither will the weather. Reports say that unlike last week’s cyclone conditions, the forecast looks “absolutely perfect”. That has Woods excited – he says clouds are the astronomy industry’s “mortal enemy”. “If I had $1 for every time an astronomical event was ruined by cloud, I could retire at 37,” he says.

Australian News Space

Squiz the Rest

A billion ways to shut it down

A few days ago, we mentioned the major Dominion v Fox News defamation trial that was meant to kick off on Monday – with an emphasis on ‘meant to‘… It was delayed before the judge announced a settlement between the 2 parties yesterday – Fox News agreed to pay Dominion Voting Systems a whopping $1.17 billion (US$787 million). Dominion sued over the broadcast of false claims about the voting machine company rigging the 2020 US presidential election, and as part of the settlement, Fox News acknowledged in a statement that “certain claims” it made about Dominion were false. By settling the case, Fox News avoids the further potential embarrassment of having its boss Rupert Murdoch and its TV stars placed in the witness box. The settlement was massive news in the US, leading every news bulletin except you know where… And it’s not the end for Fox News, with more cases relating to its election coverage coming up.

Business & Finance World News

Andrews pinged over ‘grey corruption ‘

Eyebrows were raised high in Victoria yesterday when the state’s anti-corruption body IBAC published a report outlining some questionable behaviour between Premier Daniel Andrews’ office and a union. Just before the 2018 election, Andrews announced that the Health Workers Union (HWU) had won a contract to provide training to help frontline health workers deal with violence. IBAC found that the contract was awarded without a competitive tender process – and adding insult to injury, the training was bad. IBAC said there was misconduct but didn’t allege ‘corrupt conduct’. However, it said the case was “another example of the phenomenon of grey corruption”. For the pure of heart, ‘grey corruption’ is when a decisionmaker bends the rules to benefit their mates. Coalition leader John Pesutto said whatever colour it is, it’s still corruption. And Andrews said the report was “sweeping” and “educational” but had not pointed the finger at anyone in his government.

AusPol Australian News

Shaking the diabetes away

A landmark British trial has found that following a calorie-restricted ‘soup and shake’ diet can permanently reverse type 2 diabetes. It’s the first confirmation that the condition – which is on the rise worldwide and affects some 460 million people globally, including 1.2 million Aussies – is reversible. The trial, funded by Diabetes UK, saw 298 patients prescribed an 800-calorie diet for 3 months. Five years later, those that had kept the weight off were symptom-free and no longer required medication to manage their glucose levels. Those who put a significant amount of weight back on after those 5 years saw their diabetes symptoms return – however, they were much less likely to develop serious complications than the control group who did not follow the diet. The NHS – England’s healthcare system – said it would expand the treatment across the country over the next 12 months. 


Vale Father Bob Maguire

The beloved Catholic priest, social justice advocate and media personality has died at 88yo after his health declined over the last few months. Maguire served as a parish priest in South Melbourne for nearly 4 decades, clashing with Church officials on many issues. But his tireless advocacy for marginalised parishioners and sense of humour made him such a popular figure around Oz. In 1989, he was awarded a Member of the Order of Australia for his work with homeless youths, and in 2003, he founded his eponymous foundation. Over the 2000s, Maguire became known to many Aussies through his TV and radio appearances alongside satirist John Safran. PM Anthony Albanese led the tributes yesterday, calling Maguire “a man of warmth and faith who faced struggles with a cheeky grin”. And Catholic Archbishop of Melbourne Peter Comensoli described him as “a larrikin priest” who “lived with the outcast and the unloved.”

Australian News

Netflix slips disks

It’s one of the great party facts that online streaming giant Netflix has a decidedly un-techy origin… They began 25 years ago by renting out DVDs via mail. Not email – snail mail… And even after their enormous pivot to online streaming, Netflix continues its DVD-by-post service to this day… although not much longer. The mail-out service will cease by September this year, leaving approximately zero places to rent a copy of Mrs Doubtfire on a lonely Friday night… Apart from dropping discs, Netflix announced better-than-expected earnings and worse-than-expected subscriber growth and said it would keep trying to crack down on password sharing. You needed a membership card but never a password to get a DVD…

Business & Finance Entertainment

Apropos of nothing

The iconic Tenterfield Saddler building in northern NSW – immortalised in Peter Allen’s 1972 songis up for sale. Tenterfield Mayor Bronwyn Petrie said the site is a massive drawcard for visitors and is resisting calls to step in – she hopes the next owner will turn it into a museum.

An AI-generated song replicating the vocals of Drake and The Weeknd has been pulled from music streaming services after following a copyright complaint from Universal Music. And Drake wasn’t too impressed with his eerily accurate deep fake impersonator

You might consider yourself a hardcore Taylor Swift fan, but you’re probably not as extra as this couple who tied the knot during one of her recent concerts. Not many people could say one of the biggest pop stars in the world played at their wedding…

Quirky News

Squiz the Day

1.30pm (AEST) – A total solar eclipse will be visible from the peninsula of the North-West Cape in Western Oz, while the rest of Oz will see a partial eclipse

Treasurer Jim Chalmers releases the Reserve Bank review and the government’s initial response

ABS Data Release – Regional population, 2021-22 financial year

Start of NSW Youth Week (until 30 April)

Surfing – WSL Tour – Margaret River Pro – Perth

Chinese Language Day

Birthdays for Jessica Lange (1949), Carmen Electra (1972), and Miranda Kerr (1983)

Anniversary of:
• Captain James Cook arriving in what is now New South Wales (1770)
• Marie and Pierre Curie isolating the radioactive compound radium chloride (1902)
• the Columbine High School massacre (1999)
• the death of Avicii (2018)
• Minnesota police officer Derek Chauvin being sentenced to 22.5 years in prison for the murder of George Floyd (2021)

Squiz the Day

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