Squiz Today / 31 October 2018

Squiz Today – Wednesday, 31 October


“I’m a sucker for a mid-afternoon Crunchie. And I have been known to whip up a sticky-date pudding at midnight when the urge overwhelms me." 

She had us at Crunchie... Fitness professional and former Moulin Rouge dancer Shay Stafford is also partial to baked Camembert and a good bottle of French red. A woman after our own heart! Please welcome Shay to the Three Minute Squiz.


Oscar-winning actor Geoffrey Rush’s defamation case against the Daily Telegraph yesterday saw actress Eryn Jean Norvill take the stand. Norvill played opposite Rush in the ill-fated Sydney Theatre Company (STC) production of King Lear, during which she alleges Rush inappropriately touched her while the pair were on stage together. When questioned about playfully addressing Rush via text messages as “Galapagos Lustythrust” and “Dearest Daddy Gush”, Norvill said while the nicknames could be taken as “intellectually flirtatious”, she couldn’t “apologise for coping mechanisms.”

How we got here in three quick points:

• Nationwide News, the publisher of the Daily Tele, ran a series of stories late last year alleging Rush touched a female cast member of the STC production “in a way that made her feel uncomfortable”. The stories did not name Norvill.

• Team Rush alleged the Daily Tele used dubious sources and poor journalistic practices to damage his reputation. However, the newspaper said it received a legitimate complaint about Rush and pursued it.

• As it turns out, Norvill never made an official complaint about Rush and did not intend for her ‘off the record’ comments made in a bar (and overheard by an STC employee) to be formally pursued. And she didn’t cooperate with the Daily Tele for their articles. After her identity was revealed, however, she agreed to give evidence.

The thing to remember here is this is a defamation case. It’s not a harassment suit. The appropriateness or otherwise of the behaviour Rush may or may not have indulged in is not on trial. Rather, whether through the publication of allegations the Daily Telegraph has defamed Rush – and if so, what reparations are due to him. Whatever the outcome, one thing's for sure: for a case that neither Rush wanted to bring, nor Norvill wished to be involved in, it's now a chapter in their life stories. Norvill retakes the stand today and the trial is expected to run until Friday.


They're still looking for the black box recorder, and with hope fading that there will be any survivors from the 189 onboard, the search is one for bodies. Witness reports say the plane looked like it was struggling to get level in the air before it crashed nose down into the Java Sea at speed. Information transmitted by the plane seems to back that up with erratic speed and altitude data. An inspection of all Boeing 737-Max 8 planes in Indonesia has been ordered. A recurring fault, as experienced on a flight before the crash, is a likely significant factor in the outcome, experts say.

You remember the government’s recent decision to ban Chinese companies Huawei and ZTE from participating in the upcoming 5G mobile network rollout? Is that a blank stare or are you meditating? Well, that happened because the powers-that-be said it would put our telco infrastructure, and the ‘internet of everything’ systems that run off it, at risk of interference by China. Mike Burgess, one of our top spies, made an unprecedented public appearance yesterday to say the threat is real. Concerns about China weren’t limited to the telco sector yesterday – a new report said Aussie unis are collaborating at unprecedented levels with students who are connected with China’s army.

Both the North and South Islands of New Zealand shook yesterday arvo – not from some royal welly wanging, but from a 6.2 magnitude earthquake that struck northwest of Wellington. While no major damage was reported, it was enough to suspend Parliament. It is no wonder our Kiwi cousins are cautious, the 2011 Christchurch earthquake that killed 185 people and inflicted extensive damage remains fresh in their memories.

A fast wrap’s a good wrap…

BENNELONG BLUE – There’s gonna be a fight in John Howard’s former seat. Labor has preselected former Australian Medical Association prez Brian Owler, a high profile neurosurgeon. If you’ve driven down a major road in NSW in the last couple of years, you probably passed a billboard with his noggin on it… He’ll take on former tennis champ (but recent ping-pong convert), Liberal John Alexander.

WENTWORTH RIPPLES - Status: continuing, but Kerryn Phelps is looking good for the win. A multi-tasker, she said she would also continue to serve on Sydney City Counciluntil April next year at least. As for the former member, Malcolm Turnbull sided with Indonesia in a barney with his replacement PM Scott Morrison.

PUMP PAIN – With the Morrison Government moving to intervene in the electricity market to bring prices down, ears pricked up yesterday when PM Morrison spoke of his annoyment over high petrol prices. Sadly high oil price + low Aussie $ = pump pain, and the government's not proposing a tax reduction on fuel. Still, the consumer regulator is watching.

Who is the person who dazzles us more than this huge emerald? Kim Kardashian? Justin Beiber? Or if you’ve heard something about this before you might have gone for Selena Gomez? Nup. It’s soccer sensation Cristiano Ronaldo. He has overtaken Gomez to claim +144 million followers on social media platform Instagram. Imagine his following if he’d become a professional ping-pong player – which apparently was an option for him…



12.30pm (AEDT) - Jennifer Westacott, Chief Executive of the Business Council of Australia, to address the National Press Club on 'Australia at Work: Managing Adjustment and Change' - Canberra

ABS Data Release - Consumer Price Index, September

The unveiling of the world's tallest statue - India

Vanilla Ice's birthday (1967)

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