Squiz Today / 26 June 2019

Squiz Today – Wednesday, 26 June


“Like going over Niagara Falls in a barrel - but a barrel that's on fire.”

Said former astronaut Bob Thirsk of what three Space Station residents would have gone through yesterday on their trip back to earth. Wonder if they brought their Celestial Buddy back?


Like a rolling maul going loudly and inelegantly down the middle of a rugby field, the saga surrounding former Wallaby Israel Folau continued to escalate yesterday. To recap: Folau was sacked last month by Rugby Australia over social media posts where he called on "sinners" to repent and turn to Jesus Christ to be saved from an eternity in hell. The officials said he was in breach of the code of conduct. Folau says he was upholding his religious beliefs, so he's getting ready for a legal fight.

Got it… A fundraising effort hosted by the Australian Christian Lobby kicked off yesterday to replace the GoFundMe effort that was punted on Monday. And early this morning it was heading towards $1.6 million - significantly more than what was being raised on the crowdsourcing site. Folau also received support from the Anglican Archbishop of Sydney Glenn Davies who said it was important to stand up to the; "loud, intolerant voices that swamp the quiet faith of many." But it didn’t all go his way with his netballing wife Maria pulled deeper into the melee…

You’re about to see a lot more of her with the World Netball Cup soon kicking off in mid-July. Kiwi-born Maria Folau plays for the Silver Ferns, and this year she joined the Aussie domestic comp playing for the Adelaide Thunderbirds. While she has posted to social media in the past about her religious beliefs, it was her reposting of her husband’s call for financial support last weekend that drew her into the controversy. Netball Australia, Netball South Australia and her Adelaide club all supported Maria saying she had not breached any conduct rules. And the Kiwi coach and organisation yesterday said she had done nothing wrong. But that didn’t stop high-profile Aussie netball legend Liz Ellis from weighing in or for some corporate sponsors to feel anxious about it all. It’s sure got legs, this story. So until tomorrow…



It was another cranky day packed with vitriolic statements… US President Donald Trump made good on his promise to increase penalties on Iran, this time cracking down on financial support for Iran’s Supreme Leader and his top officials. That drew a furious response and Iran’s conclusion that diplomatic channels were closed. Trump hit back again saying America would respond with force if provoked. Which is a long way of saying Team Trump’s full-court-press on Iran to open doors on negotiations for a new nuclear deal is hitting some snags. Speaking of opening doors


A few weeks ago there was a flurry of attention about a contract the Coalition Government had with a mob called Paladin for security services at the Manus Island detention centre. And look, we can barely remember what we had for lunch yesterday so no apologies are necessary if it doesn't spring to mind… Well, things have changed in Papua New Guinea with newly installed PM James Marape yesterday telegraphing that he does not want Oz to renew Paladin’s +$400 million contract when it expires next month. Home Affairs Minister Peter Dutton has previously said Paladin’s services would likely continue, but Marape says foreign contractors in services like security were not wanted.


THAT’S SWEET - One of the biggest criticisms of our Health Star Ratingsystem is that some products that are not great for you rate well. So yesterday, consumer group Choice has set out a way to give the thumbs up to foods with natural sugars while taking stars away from those with added sugar. For example, Nutri-Grain (which is 30% sugar) would go from four stars to just 1.5.

DIRTY BIRD SALES FLY - Can’t be bothered to leg it out of the house? Don’t want to wing your fast food hit? You’re not alone… KFC’s Aussie parent company yesterday reported food delivery app sales (think Deliveroo and Menulog) had helped to deliver an almost 17% revenue lift on last year.

WORKERS WANT A SLICE OUT OF DOMINO’S - A class action has been launched claiming the pizza shop’s franchisees were given bad advice from head office leading to workers being paid less than they should have been. The news saw the company dip more than 7% on the stock exchange yesterday.


A Sussex… A success… Geddit? Oh, forget it… The Royals’ books were opened up for scrutiny yesterday, and the figure that garnered the most attention was how much the renovations of Frogmore Cottage - the new home of Harry, Meghan and baby Archie - cost. The conversion of the once-dilapidated series of five staff apartments that’s been turned into one home (with a yoga room) has so far tallied A$4.4 million. And more work is to be done with a new kitchen on the list of improvements still to come. Well, they need somewhere to put the organic veggies from their new garden…


In one of the most anticipated games of the cricket World Cup so far, Australia faced the English last night (and former captain Steve Smith and David Warner faced some boos)… and we smashed 'em by 64 runs. The Aussies batted first and scored 285 for seven wickets. England only managed to score 221 runs before they were all out in their 44th over. That’s booked our ticket to the semi-finals. Yee-haw…


Back in the annals of time, when people bought newspapers and the TV news was a vital daily habit, a breed of journalists existed who were at least as well-known for their hard-drinking/hard-living antics as any scoop they may have garnered. And at the top of that hallowed tree was a bloke called Steve Dunleavy. A journo who got his start in the highly competitive Sydney tabloid scene of the early 60s, Dunleavy moved to the New York Post and would go on to become one of Rupert Murdoch’s favourite hacks for his news-breaking prowess. One of his all-time great scoops was revealing Elvis’ downward spiral just weeks before his death. He was also credited with bringing tabloid TV to the US as the star reporter on its first iteration of A Current Affair. Said Murdoch of his long-term faithful employee’s passing: “His death is the end of a great era.” Dunleavy passed away yesterday at 81yo.


12.30pm (AEST) - David Anderson (ABC Managing Director), Hugh Marks (Nine CEO) and Michael Miller (News Corp Executive Chairman) to address the National Press Club about press freedom - Canberra

Construction union boss John Setka to front court where he is expected to plead guilty to charges of harassing a woman - Melbourne

ABS Data Release - Engineering Construction Activity, March

Start of the Glastonbury Festival (on until 30 June)

UN Torture Victims Day and International Day Against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking

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