Squiz Today / 13 December 2019
Squiz Today – Friday, 13 December
Is what one woman calls her PRI. That’s a phone-related injury. And it’s what can happen when you watch a music clip while negotiating a set of stairs...
FOCUS ON WHITE ISLAND RECOVERY MISSION
Members of New Zealand’s Defence Force have gone to White Island early this morning to recover eight bodies after Monday’s volcanic eruption. And while surveillance flights have located six of the eight bodies, efforts will be made to recover everyone, Deputy Police Commissioner Mike Clement said yesterday. "A lot of things have to go right for this to work," he said.
WHY CAN’T THEY WAIT?
There’s a 50-60% chance of another eruption today. And as volcanologist Dr Graham Leonard said; "Today is less safe than yesterday, and the day before that." With families wanting a chance to retrieve the victims’ remains, today is the day. As this grim discussion played out yesterday, new video footage from a tourist that got off White Island 20 minutes before the eruption was released. Experts say there were clear signs the volcano was going to blow. (Note: This 360-degree look at White Island and this timeline helps to put it all into perspective.)
WHAT IS THE UPDATE ON THE VICTIMS?
The confirmed number of deaths yesterday rose to eight, including six Australians. Nine people are still missing (note: eight of those are on the island). Reports say that families are anguished with details about their loved ones still hard to come by. Warning that there was a possibility the death toll would rise, Prime Minister Scott Morrison yesterday praised the efforts of the medical teams who will bring more Australians home for treatment today. The survivors have severe burn injuries to their skin and lungs, and reports say 1.2 million square centimetres of skin is coming from the US.
SQUIZ THE REST
QUICK ELECTION NEWS WRAP
UK POLLS ARE STILL OPEN - And the only thing to know at this point is the #DogsAtPollingStations have taken on a Christmas theme this year… Even PM Boris Johnson’s pooch Dylan was out and about. Voting ends at 9am (AEDT), and we'll get a hint of the results by the middle of today.
ISRAEL GOES AGAIN - Israel is off to an unprecedented third election in 12 months. Neither PM Benjamin Netanyahu nor rival Benny Gantz has been able to form a government after the tied election held in September. So pencil in 2 March next year... Oi vey.
SHOW US THE MONEY - Political parties and independent candidates received nearly $70 million in funding from the Electoral Commission after May's federal election. The top paydays went to the Liberals with $27.6 million, Labor with $24.7 million, and the Greens with $8 million. Clive Palmer’s United Australia Party, which spent tens-of-millions on advertising, received $650,383. To qualify for the funding, parties and candidates have to get more than 4% of first preference votes.
WEINSTEIN TO MAKE NO ADMISSIONS IN SETTLEMENT
After two years of negotiations, disgraced movie producer Harvey Weinstein and his former company are on track to reach a US$25 million settlement with dozens of women who have accused him of assault and harassment. If the deal is finalised, most of the lawsuits that have been filed by more than 30 accusers will be dropped. Critics are concerned that Weinstein will avoid having to fess up to any wrongdoing under the deal. For the deal to go ahead, the settlement needs to be approved by the court and all parties involved, including the alleged victims. A frail-looking Weinstein fronted court yesterday for a bail hearing and is due to face court on two criminal charges in January next year.
WATCHDOG DIDN’T KEEP CLIMATE CHANGE QUESTIONS AT BAY
PM Scott Morrison wanted to talk about the creation of a watchdog for digital platforms, including Google and Facebook. But the journos wanted to ask him about the bushfires and links to the government’s handling of climate change. It’s about the drought, he said, and “climate change, along with many other factors, contribute to what is occurring today." And as Oz contributes 1.3% of global greenhouse emissions, “any suggestion that the actions of any state or any country with emissions of that order is directly linked to any weather event ... is simply not true," he said. As for the digital platforms’ watchdog - the ACCC will receive more funding and start with a look-see at how online advertising algorithms target users - something traditional media companies say is cutting their collective revenue lunch. Morrison is also looking for international support for a global tax on big tech companies.
INVESTORS WOUND UP OVER WESTPAC WORRIES
To say that Westpac’s shareholders are cranky is an understatement. The bank’s board fronted up to the investor get-together yesterday and one topic dominated - the alleged 23 million breaches of the anti-money laundering and terror financing laws, and accusations the bank processed transactions linked to child exploitation. The scandal has shaved almost 10% off the company’s share price. "We are deeply sorry ... you believe in this company and we let you down," said outgoing chairman Lindsay Maxsted. The apology wasn’t enough to prevent shareholders from inflicting a ‘second strike’ on the company’s remuneration report. That triggered a vote to remove the board, but shareholders decided they should keep their directorships. Sometimes it’s worse punishment to be made to stay to clean up the mess…
FRIDAY LITES - THREE THINGS WE LIKED THIS WEEK
This fab digital article by the ABC on how to run is worth a look, even (ahem…) for non-runners. We deployed a couple of the tactics on our walk to the office yesterday - stand tall, get your hips a bit further forward, step onto the middle of your foot - and one thing was missing. Our core muscles. Now there’s a project for 2020…
If you’re helping out Santa this year, it might be handy to see if your people are on the naughty or nice list. Where do you get that sort of information? From the Department of Christmas Affairs, of course.
And for anyone with a Christmas Party coming up, let this song be a hilarious warning to you…
SQUIZ THE DAY
Taylor Swift's 30th birthday
Anniversary of the capture of Iraq President Saddam Hussein (2003)
Anniversary of the last human landing on the moon (1972)
Anniversary of the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting where 20 children and 6 adults were killed (2012)
International Tea Day
80th anniversary of Gone with the Wind’s premiere in Atlanta (1939)
Ten days until Christmas…
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