Squiz Today / 23 November 2022

Squiz Today – Wednesday, 22 November

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Squiz Today Podcast

Getting you past the halfway mark.

Today’s listen time: 9.30 minutes

13 / 27
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Squiz Sayings

“I always knew the Carrot was in there but never thought I would catch it.”

Said British man Andy Hackett of the highly unusual catch he reeled in at Bluewater Lakes in Champagne, France. No, it’s not a vegetable – it’s a 30kg goldfish that has eluded anglers for 20 years. He’s gonna need a bigger fishbowl…

Help for drivers and working pensioners

If you’ve been keen to get behind the wheel of your own electric vehicle (EV) but can’t afford one, prices could soon be reduced after Labor reached a deal with the Greens and independent senator David Pocock. Businesses would save up to $9,000 and individuals $4,700 if they buy their new EV car through a salary sacrifice arrangement. And the plan will see eligible vehicles costing up to $84,916 exempt from import charges and fringe benefits tax. If you’re lost in the financy jargon, you can dive into how it works here. Long story short, the bill now looks set to pass the Senate, and Treasurer Jim Chalmers says it’s “a win for motorists, a win for businesses and a win for climate action”.

It depends on who you ask… The Coalition opposes the policy as it will cost the budget $4.5 billion over the next 10 years. BTW, that’s not the final bill – the arrangement will be backdated to 1 July this year, adding to the total. And not everyone is happy about the push away from hybrid vehicles, which are powered by petrol and electric-charged batteries. Ending support for those vehicles was a condition of getting support from the Greens/Pocock. Another issue is the long wait for many EV models, and people in regional areas are concerned about the vehicles’ staying power. And the policy has been criticised for benefitting wealthier Aussies who can afford the pricier vehicle. But Greens leader Adam Bandt says the eventual secondhand market of EV vehicles will bring down the cost for “everyday people”.

We’re glad you asked… Last night the federal parliament passed new laws to allow working pensioners to keep some extra income before their government payments are affected. The amount they can earn will increase from $4,000 to $11,800 from the start of December (aka next week) and will stay in place until the end of 2023. About 50,000 pensioners will benefit, Social Services Minister Amanda Rishworth says. It’s a policy championed by Coalition leader Peter Dutton and is in response to workforce shortages across the country. Rishworth says: “Older workers are an untapped market, having years of knowledge and skills to offer employers,” she said.


Squiz the Rest

A close call in the Solomons

Solomon Islands’ residents headed for the hills after the US Tsunami Warning System issued the alert at 1.03pm (AEDT) yesterday after a 7-magnitude earthquake struck off the southern coast, followed by a 2nd 6-magnitude quake. The Solomons’ National Disaster Management Office received reports that people felt the tremors, but there were no reports of widespread damage, although Australia’s High Commission roof collapsed. It comes a day after a 5.6-magnitude earthquake struck Indonesia’s West Java town of Cianjur. Authorities have warned that the death toll of 268 is expected to rise as they continue to search through the rubble. And there must be something in the air after a 3.2 magnitude undersea quake was recorded off the coast of Batemans Bay on the NSW South Coast yesterday morning. Big earthquakes are rare in Oz – it’s one natural disaster we underdeliver on…

World News

Nightclub shooting heroes named

Two men who subdued the shooter who allegedly opened fire in an LGBTQI+ nightclub in the US state of Colorado on Saturday night have been labelled heroes, with officials saying their efforts “saved a lot of lives”. Rich Fierro, a decorated US army veteran, and Thomas James have been named as the men who intervened when the shooting began at Club Q in Colorado Springs… Fierro talks through the details of what went down – and it’s an incredible story and well worth a look. He says he doesn’t think of himself as a hero, saying “I’m just some dude”. Five people – including Fierro’s daughter’s boyfriend – were killed, and 17 were injured in the attack. The suspect has been identified as Anderson Lee Aldrich – he’s currently in hospital and is facing 5 counts of murder, amongst other charges.

World News

Flight delays still taking off

It might not surprise Aussies who have hopped on a plane in recent months, but flight delays and cancellations are still near record-high levels in Oz as demand outstrips supply. New data from the federal Department of Transport found 69.3% of flights arrived on time in October and 68.5% departed on time, which isn’t a great result. Qantas was the top-performing carrier over the month with a 74.2% punctuality rate, followed by Rex (68.3%), Virgin (64.9%), and Jetstar (64.4%). While it’s a slight improvement on September’s figures, stubbornly high flight delay figures have led to calls for Oz to implement a mandatory compensation system for customers who have their flights cancelled or delayed. Consumer advocacy group Choice says Australia lags behind the likes of Europe, the US, and New Zealand when it comes to protections for travellers. 

Australian News Business & Finance

Disney replaces one Bob with another

It’s a case of in with the old Bob and out with the new Bob at entertainment giant Disney… The company’s board has announced a shock move to replace CEO Bob Chapek with former long-time boss Bob Iger, who officially retired last year. During his 15 years at the helm, Iger was a popular figure, overseeing major money-making moves to align Disney with the likes of the Marvel and Star Wars film franchises and the Pixar animation studio. Iger’s been tasked with getting the company back on track after a rocky post-COVID period and significant losses by its streaming service… Disney+ lost nearly US$1.5bn in the 3 months to the end of September… News of Iger’s return saw the company’s share price rise by more than 8% – and one expert reckons his return is “probably the most significant piece of corporate upheaval since [Steve] Jobs went back to Apple”.

Business & Finance Entertainment

That’s a lot for an old tank…

A 1930s water tank and cart, which had been sitting in a paddock in Victoria’s northeast for decades, has sold for $61,300 – more than double the previous record price. That might sound like a lot for an old tank, but this one is a Furphy – a Shepparton-built icon that started out as a bit of farm kit in the late 1800s. They’ve become collector’s items in recent years, with their rarity pushing prices up and parts to repair and restore them fetching thousands of dollars. The water carts inspired the slang word ‘furphy’ – for those in the dark, it refers to a rumour or an absurd tale. Before water cooler chats, the Furphy tanks’ movements on WWI battlefields inspired endless speculation – a lot of it wrong – about where troops would be sent. Back to the here and now, you’ll have to save up if you want one…

Australian News

Apropos of Nothing

Yesterday, we brought you turkeys to cuddle. Today, it’s ‘Chocolate’ and ‘Chip’ who have become the luckiest turkeys of 2022 after receiving a presidential pardon in the long-standing US tradition… The birds met with Joe Biden before enjoying a stay at the “residence of the presidents”, aka DC’s Willard Hotel.

Sister Cristina Scuccia, who wowed judges and audiences alike when she won Italy’s version of The Voice in 2014, says she’s dropped nunhood to become a waitress as she pursues her musical career. That’s a big habit to break…

A T-Rex skeleton – inexplicably nicknamed ‘Shen’ – has been pulled from an auction after a scientist said it might contain bones from another dinosaur. Shen’s skull apparently bears an uncanny resemblance to another called ‘Stan’. Someone get Alan Grant on the case…

Quirky News

Squiz the Day

6.00am (AEDT) – FIFA World Cup Group Stage – Australia v France – Qatar

ABS Data Release – Retirement and Retirement Intentions

AIHW Release – Health expenditure, Australia 2020-21

National Go Home On Time Day

A birthday for champion swimmer and Survivor winner Shane Gould (1956), Venezuelan president Nicolás Maduro (1962) and singer Miley Cyrus (1992)

Anniversary of the death of author Roald Dahl (1990)

Squiz the Day

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