Squiz Today / 14 June 2019
Squiz Today – Friday, 14 June
“The Prince of Whales”
Is how US President Donald Trump referred to Prince Charles in a (now deleted) tweet overnight. Let’s just say the internet is enjoying itself…
ADANI A GO-GO
It’s dust off the digger time in Central Queensland with Indian miner Adani receiving its final environmental approval from the state government giving the Carmichael coal mine in the Galilee Basin the green light. It's a controversial development that has seen job-hungry locals and pro-mining types on one side, and environmentalists and those concerned about coal's role in global warming on the other.
BACK IT UP A BIT…
We won't go back nine years when Adani had ambitions for a bigger coal mining operation. Or even the last couple of years when plans for a smaller mine were submitted. And we won't drag you through the recent federal election when Bill Shorten and Labor's lack of enthusiastic support for the mine was part of the reason the party was punished in seats north of Brisbane. What is notable, though, is the recent change in direction by the Queensland Labor Government. Pundits say the final approvals were fast-tracked due to Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk's desire not to receive the same treatment at next year's state election.
WHAT HAPPENS NEXT?
Adani Australia CEO Lucas Dow said work would start quickly. The open cut mine’s development will take two years, and then there will be new government approvals required before it can take a single lump of coal out of the ground. Dow also repeated the company's projection that the mine's development would create 1,500 direct jobs and 6,750 indirect jobs. Meanwhile, environmentalists vowed to continue the fight against the mine. They are concerned about the impact on the black-throated finch, water contamination that could affect the Barrier Reef, and carbon emissions from the ultimate burning of the coal.
SQUIZ THE REST
US BLAMES IRAN FOR TANKER ATTACKS
Two tankers have been attacked in the strategically important Strait of Hormuz in the Gulf of Oman by what's thought to be explosive mines attached to their sides. One vessel is a Japanese-owned ship called the Kokura Courageous that is carrying chemicals, the other is oil tanker Front Altair owned by a Bermuda-based Norwegian company. Forty-four crew were evacuated (assisted by a US Navy patrol in the area) after fires broke out. While some nations urged against rushing to judgement, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo says Iran is responsible with tensions between the two countries escalating in recent weeks. Iran denies any connection. As a side note, Japan’s PM Shinzo Abe has been in Tehran this week, so it’s awkward timing given one of the tankers’ ownership. UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres urged calm saying; “If there is something the world cannot afford, it is a major confrontation in the Gulf region."
MORE HONG KONG PROTESTS EXPECTED
More protests are expected over the weekend as the city recovered from Wednesday’s violence over plans for an extradition agreement with mainland China, Taiwan and Macau. Government buildings in the financial district were closed yesterday and are expected to remain shut today. There is no clarity yet on when the bill will be debated in the legislative council, but there is no indication that lawmakers intend to back down. Watch this space…
SETKA SAGA STUMBLES ONWARDS
In this game of ‘resign/I won’t resign’ tennis, it’s now a stalemate. To recap: Labor leader Anthony Albanese said he would move to expel Victorian secretary of the construction union John Setka over comments he was reported to have made disparaging the work of family violence prevention campaigner Rosie Batty. Setka said he didn’t make the comments and he would not stand down from his union job. Yesterday, peak unions boss Sally McManus called on Setka to quit - but not because of the Batty issue, but rather because he is involved in “several matters before the court.” Setka tweeted it back over the net saying he had no intention of resigning. McManus has no lever to force his removal which means the saga now stumbles into its second week. Wonder who’s going to be the Justin Bieberin this scenario...
UNEMPLOYMENT NUMBERS SPARK TALK OF ANOTHER RATE CUT
That’s the message some economic enthusiasts have taken out of yesterday’s official employment numbers. Unemployment is at 5.2%, which is steady on last month’s result. But there are signs job creation is slowing with just 2,400 full-time jobs created in the month (although part-time roles were up by 39,800). The Reserve Bank is looking for an unemployment rate of 4.5% to help tackle inflation, and we're a fair way off that. Just 18 more sleeps until the next Reserve Bank meeting when rates will be discussed…
QUICK SPORTS NEWS WRAP
SOCCER WORLD CUP RESULT - The Matildas are back. They have won their second round match against Brazil 3-2 early this morning. Brazil hasn't lost a round match in the World Cup in 24 years. Captain Sam Kerr didn’t mince her words; “I'm so proud of the girls. There was a lot of critics talking about us so suck on that one.”
FROOME BADLY INJURED - British cyclist Chris Froome was on track have a go at his fifth Tour de France title, until a devastating high-speed crash yesterday. He hit a wall at 60 km/hour breaking his elbow, leg and ribs. Ouch. He’s had surgery and reports say it went well, but the injuries have "likely ended his season". You think?
WARNER’S BIG COME BACK – After scoring a century during Australia’s winning turn against Pakistan on Wednesday night, former deputy captain David Warner credited his wife Candice for his return to form after last year's ball-tampering scandal. And he made one Aussie kid happy when he handed over his man of the match trophy. Nice.
FRIDAY LITES - THREE THINGS WE LIKED THIS WEEK
J Crew is an American high street fashion brand that we’ve enjoyed over the years (particularly pre-Squiz when we had a devil-may-care attitude to internet shopping...). So this read about the brand’s fortunes shines a light on what makes the retail industry and consumers’ changing tastes so interesting.
Chernobyl on Foxtel is all the rage at the moment. Who would have thought a TV mini-series on the catastrophic nuclear accident in Ukraine in 1986 would be a smash hit? We’ll give it a go this weekend. And speaking of building a following, the social media influencer activity around it is something to behold…
But don’t despair – here’s a social media influencer we can firmly get behind.
SQUIZ THE DAY
11.30am (AEST) - State Memorial Service for former PM Bob Hawke - Sydney Opera House and broadcast on ABC TV
Second anniversary of the Grenfell Tower Fire Tragedy in London that killed 80 people and injured 74
7.30pm (AEST) - World Cup Cricket - Australia v Sri Lanka
Global Wind Day (meteorological, not flatulence…)
Start of Refugee Week
China’s President Xi Jinping’s birthday (1953)
Guatemala’s general election
150th anniversary of explorer Charles Sturt’s birthday
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