Squiz Today / 14 June 2023

Squiz Today – Wednesday, 14 June

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Squiz Today Podcast

Getting you where you need to go. 

Today’s listen time: 8.00 minutes

SYD
10 / 18
MEL
9 / 15
BNE
12 / 25
ADL
11 / 16
PER
11 / 19
HBA
6 / 15
DRW
20 / 33
CBR
4 / 11

Squiz Sayings

“Put it in the Louvre!”

Tweeted golfer Adam Hadwin about a photo of him being tackled by a security guard as he popped a bottle of champers celebrating his mate Nick Taylor’s Canadian Open win. The world #75 was mistaken for a heckler but his sense of humour remains intact…

Trump’s return to court

THE SQUIZ

It’s a big day in Florida for former US President Donald Trump… Early this morning, Trump pleaded not guilty in a Miami courthouse to 37 federal charges related to keeping classified documents at his Mar-a-Lago residence. At the time of sending you your morning news starter the case had just left the courtroom, with a Trump lawyer outside the court saying no mug shot was taken and arguing: “He’s not a flight risk. He is the leading candidate of the GOP [Republican Party] at the moment.” We also know that Trump plans to fly back to his New Jersey golf club for a ​​​​​​​political fundraising dinner where he’s expected to address the indictment. If that wasn’t enough, Wednesday is also Trump’s 77th birthday. What a way to celebrate…

HOW IS THE LEGAL CASE LOOKING?

Now that legal experts have had a few days to sift through the charges against the Republican heavyweight, they’ve been weighing in on the strength of the case. The short version: it’s not looking great for Trump. The evidence against Trump includes an audio recording of him showing a secret doc to a group of people and saying that he “could have declassified it”, which undercuts his previous argument that all the files were already declassified. Legal eagles also reckon that the obstruction charges might be the most serious part of the indictment – in other words, the cover-up being worse than the alleged crime. Trump’s own former Attorney General William Barr boiled it down, saying, “If even half of it is true, then he’s toast.”

AND THE POLITICS?

If toast is on the menu, Trump would prefer to skip this breakfast. He called the indictment “a political hit job”, and Republicans agree… In a recent poll, 81% of them called the charges politically motivated. The same poll also saw 43% of self-identified Republicans put Trump as their #1 pick for the presidential nomination, putting him leagues ahead of the second-placed Florida Governor Ron DeSantis on 22%. The timing for the trial isn’t yet locked in, but some experts say it would likely happen after the November 2024 election. Which raises another fascinating question: could Trump pardon himself if he wins? Experts are split, but that doesn’t mean he wouldn’t try…

Looking for the backstory to this big news story? Here’s a super quick Squiz Shortcut to get your talking points in order. You’re welcome.

Crime World News

Squiz the Rest

‘Suffering’ bus driver heads home on bail

Brett Button – the man driving the bus carrying 35 wedding guests when it rolled on Sunday – was yesterday granted bail after appearing in the Cessnock Local Court. Police alleged the bus was travelling “too quick” when it rolled at a roundabout near the Hunter Expressway at Greta in NSW’s Hunter Valley region at around 11.30pm and said witnesses had given evidence of “prolonged dangerous driving” leading up to the crash that killed 10 people. They were Nadene McBride and her daughter Kyah, Kane Symons, Angus Craig, Darcy Bulman, Zach Bray, Andrew Scott and his wife Lynan, Tori Cowburn and Rebecca Mullen. Many were keen sportspeople linked to the Singleton Roosters Aussie Rules club. It has launched a fundraiser to “raise as much as we can to help the families” impacted by the tragedy.

Australian News

More differing accounts over Higgins case

The political fallout over how MPs from the major parties handled former Liberal staffer Brittany Higgins’ assault claims before she went public continued yesterday. Liberal Linda Reynolds, Higgins’ boss at the time, sent a defamation notice to Labor’s Tanya Plibersek over comments that the assault was “covered up” (paywall). Finance Minister/ Katy Gallagher told the Senate she knew of the allegation before it was reported in the media – a suggestion she’d previously shot down. But she says she did “absolutely nothing” with the information, including seeking to gain political advantage. Former PM Scott Morrison also made a statement to parliament yesterday, saying he did not deliberately get it wrong in 2021 when he said he and his former staffer Fiona Brown (Higgins/Bruce Lehrmann’s manager in 2019) had spoken about the matter. It followed Brown’s recollection of how it all went down (paywall), her lack of opportunity to talk to Morrison about it, and her sense that she took the fall for the scandal. Several pollies, including Tassie Senator Jacqui Lambie and Liberal MP Bridget Archer, have called on their colleagues to keep politics out of it. 

AusPol Australian News Crime

No movement on attitudes towards women

Progress towards gender equality has stalled over the past decade, with 9 out of 10 people biased against women. That’s according to the United Nations Development Programme’s latest Gender Social Norms Index, based on data collected between 2017-22 from 80 countries. Half of those surveyed believe men make better political leaders, while 40% said they make better business leaders. And when asked if it’s ok for men to hit their wives, 25% said sure… Researchers say the “alarming” figures are largely unchanged from the last data set taken between 2005-14 and show that the world isn’t on track to reach the UN’s goal of gender parity by 2030. The report called on governments to do more to promote women’s equality in “all spheres of life”. 

Australian News Culture

One perfect day

Researchers in Canada have pulled together time data from countries across the globe and calculated what an average human day looks like, and the big, capital-Z finding is: sleep. About 38% of our time – 9.1 hours – is spent in bed, according to the researchers, which one of them called “not necessarily surprising when you think about it” (unless you’re getting well under that and thinking about sleep all the time…). A second big chunk was a category called ‘Direct Human Outcomes’ (9.4 hours), which included 1.6 hours on meals, 1.1 hours grooming, 0.2 hours in religious practice, and a pleasant 4.6 hours on interactive and social activities. Comparing Australia to the rest of the world, the researchers found that we sleep slightly less than the global average and spend slightly less time on grooming (0.9 hours). And we should say thank you for spending some of your Direct Human Outcomes minutes with us today – we appreciate it…. 

World News

Eau de Charles…

If you can’t be a king, at least you can smell like one… At least, that’s what King Charles and English perfumery Penhaligon hope people will say when the monarch’s new scent debuts. Charles worked with Penhaligon’s perfumer Julie Pluchet to design ‘Highgrove Bouquet’, a unisex perfume that captures “the scent of the weeping silver lime tree”. Pluchet says she doesn’t know “that it’s been used in any other fragrances – it has wonderful green, floral, powdery and animal facets”. Mmm sniffalicious… Joining the ranks of pop and sports stars bringing in cents with scents, reports say a portion of the King’s perfume proceeds will go to The Prince’s Trust, which supports youth education/employment. If you’d like to get yourself some of that silver lime scent, a 100ml bottle retails for $320 and will be available at DJ’s this month.

Quirky News

Apropos of nothing

The Beatles are back with one last song… thanks to AI. Paul McCartney used AI to finish a demo of a John Lennon song called ‘Now And Then’, to be released this year. The demo was previously unworkable due to background noise, but McCartney said, “They tell the machine, ‘That’s the voice. This is a guitar. Lose the guitar’.” 

If you’re ever frustrated by the sounds of other diners disturbing the ambience, Solo Per Due (translation: table for 2) in Italy might be for you. The exclusive fine dining establishment does what it says on the box – it serves US$500 meals for 2 at a single, 2-seater table. Bon app… 

Eat Pray Love author Elizabeth Gilbert has upset Ukraine after it was revealed her new historical novel was set in Russia. Gilbert apologised and pulled the novel due to be released in February next year.

Quirky News

Squiz the Day

12.30pm (AEST) – AMA President Professor Stephen Robson addresses the National Press Club – Canberra

ABS Data Release – Overseas Arrivals and Departures, April

World Blood Donor Day

International Bath Day

Birthdays for Donald Trump (1946) and Boy George (1961)

Anniversary of:
• the founding of the US Army (1775)
• Captain William Bligh and his men reaching Timor after sailing 5,800 km in a 6-metre boat following the mutiny on the HMS Bounty (1789)
• the recording of the first country music hit Little Old Log Cabin in the Lane (1923)
• the Grenfell Tower fire tragedy in London that killed 80 people and injured 74 (2017)

Australian News

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