Squiz Today / 20 April 2022

Squiz Today – Wednesday, 20 April

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Squiz Today Podcast

Your news briefing for mornings when you need to crack on.

Today’s listen time: 9 minutes

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Squiz Sayings


Is the word for male cleavage, and it’s the latest trend for men that’s bringing bare chests back into vogue. One convert is French President Emmanuel Macron, who has been snapped reclining on a couch as his unbuttoned shirt after a day on the campaign trail. That’s one way to appeal for public support…

It’s beginning to feel a lot like a campaign…


You know there’s a federal election campaign on when the major parties are ramping up the scare campaigns and declaring that they won’t do any deals to get into government. Aussie voters got both yesterday…


Sure, but this is politics, so words will also hurt me… And yesterday, PM Scott Morrison for the Coalition and Labor’s Treasury spokesman Jim Chalmers went at it hard. Chalmers said the Coalition is lying when they say a Labor policy will push electricity prices up. In response, Morrison called Chalmers “sneaky Jim” and said Labor’s claims that the Coalition is planning on adding pensioners to the cashless welfare card is “an out and out disgusting lie”. And the war of words over the Liberals’ Warringah candidate Katherine Deves continues with Morrison fending off criticism from his opponents and his own side for supporting her. Senior Liberals have called for her to be disendorsed over inflammatory comments she’s made about transgender people, but yesterday the PM said “I’m not going to allow her to be silenced”. Albanese’s take: “I’ll leave it to them to sort it out.”


Good question. So the polls this week are pointing to a tight result, and a hung parliament is being floated as a possible outcome. That’s because many of the voters who were surveyed say they are thinking about voting for someone other than a candidate from the major parties. That saw the question pop up yesterday: would Morrison or Albanese do a deal to get into government? The response: no. Both Morrison and Albanese say they will not negotiate with the minor parties or independents. So 2 things about that… The first is both leaders want voters to get behind them and stop flirting with the indies. And the second is that things will get a bit cray cray if neither side wins the 76 seats needed to secure a majority. Strap yourself in…


Squiz the Rest

Russia launches a new assault on Donbas region

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has declared that the battle for the country’s east is underway after Russia stepped up artillery and rocket attacks along the almost 500km front in what’s been called the ‘Battle for Donbas’, as the map shows. “No matter how many soldiers get thrown there, we will fight, we will defend ourselves. We will do that every day,” he said in a video address yesterday. But some Ukrainian officials and analysts say the Russian attack could be a prelude to a much larger assault on the region – a sentiment shared by American officials. The Pentagon estimated that Russia has already sent up to 11,000 more soldiers into the Donbas region, and tens of thousands more are in reserve in northern Ukraine. Overnight, President Biden called America’s allies looking for more money and weapons for Ukraine and considering imposing more sanctions against Russia. 

World News

Solomons and China sign security pact

China has announced that it’s signed the controversial deal with Solomon Islands, just a week after Australia launched a last-ditch diplomatic effort to stop it. Last night, China’s Foreign Ministry spokesman Wang Wenbin confirmed the agreement would cover cooperation with Honiara on maintaining social order and helping safeguard national security, and that it was “not directed at any third party”. Our mob are deeply disappointed by the news, with Foreign Minister Marise Payne concerned about “its potential to undermine stability in our region.” Oz, New Zealand and the US have been pushing back against the prospect of having the Chinese military in the southwest Pacific more frequently. Payne says the commitment from Solomons PM Manasseh Sogavare that his country “will never be used for military bases or other military institutions of foreign powers” will be key. It comes as America’s top diplomat in the Indo-Pacific Kurt Campbell leads a delegation to Honiara to “share concerns” later this week. Too late, Kurt…

World News

The link between bottle shops and violence

The NSW authority for liquor licences has commissioned new research to determine whether suburbs with lots of bottle shops have higher rates of domestic violence and whether there’s a link. The investigation to be undertaken by La Trobe University will also investigate whether adding new grog shops in lower socio-economic areas has a different effect than on wealthier suburbs. Philip Crawford from NSW’s Independent Liquor and Gaming Authority says pubs have become a lot better at dealing with violence on their premises, but “increasingly we are getting the feeling violence is something more pernicious in society, occurring in the home.” He said his state lacks the data to assess the potential downsides of easier access to alcohol. A previous report in 2016 about extended trading hours for liquor outlets found a “very small but statistically significant rise in domestic assaults”, but more info is being sought via this study.

Australian News Crime

A $100 million arty Fox

The family of the billionaire trucking mandate Lindsay Fox has made the largest single donation in the history of the National Gallery of Victoria to help fund the construction of a new contemporary art space. It’ll be known as `’The Fox: NGV Contemporary’ and it builds on a previous $20 million donation by the Ian Potter Foundation in 2020. The announcement yesterday marked Lindsay Fox’s 85th birthday and his wife Paula – who sits on the NGV’s board – said she hoped the donation would inspire other philanthropists to donate. “It’s an extraordinary gift to the people of Victoria,” said Victorian Arts Minister Danny Pearson, with the state government pledging $1.7 billion towards a new arts precinct on Melbourne’s riverfront. Lindsay Fox said the donation wasn’t about his legacy because that’s taken care of. “I’ve got my name on, like, 5,000 trucks.” He added, “we’re a family that enjoys giving. You never go broke by giving.”

Australian News

The perks of small-town living

There are the wide-open spaces, but one postie in the NSW town of Gilgandra has demonstrated another benefit to living in a small town: curbing identity theft. Local post office licensee Stuart Border knows just about everyone in the 4,200-strong town, so he said he “smelled a rat” when he received a package for local journo ​​Emily Middleton addressed to a home that wasn’t hers. After Border delivered the package to her workplace instead, Middleton was confused when she received an iPad from her family’s telco provider that she hadn’t ordered. “At first I honestly thought my dad had done something very confusing… I got his bowel screening test one time,” Middleton said. But she soon realised a scammer had used her stolen credit card details to set up a fake account in her name and was able to resolve the issue with her telco. You’ve gotta love community… 

Australian News Quirky News

Apropos of Nothing

After her shock retirement from tennis, Ash Barty will play in the inaugural Icons Series golf tournament in June. She’s handy with a putter, but she also has a good coach on hand: PGA trainee pro Garry Kissick, who also happens to be her fianceé.

Pop star Harry Styles has broken the Guinness World Record for the most streamed track on Spotify in 24 hours by a male artist for his latest single As It Was. Racking up a massive 16 million streams in its first day, it’s on par with the women’s recordholder, Adele’s Easy on Me.  

You can find them in many homes around Oz, but according to an expert, fiddle leaf figs are on the way out. The latest ‘it’ plant: the Geogenanthus ciliatus, or Geo, which looks “like Mars” and is hard to kill. Oh, we’ll find a way…

Quirky News

Squiz the Day

7.00pm (AEST) – PM Scott Morrison and Labor leader Anthony Albanese face off in the first leaders’ debate of the 2022 election – live on Sky News

50th Golden Guitar Awards, as part of the Tamworth Country Music Festival

The annual Parkes Elvis Festival begins (until 24 April)

Chinese Language Day

Birthdays for actors Jessica Lange (1949) and Carmen Electra (1972), and model-turned-beauty-biz-whiz 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 musician Avicii (2018)
• Minnesota police officer Derek Chauvin being sentenced to 22.5 years’ prison for the murder of George Floyd (2021)

Squiz the Day

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