Squiz Today / 11 November 2019
Squiz Today – Monday, 11 November
“It was like an inferno, it was like the apocalypse, it was like hell on earth.”
Said Peter Simpson, a Nymboida, NSW resident who was able to save his home on Friday. Many of his neighbours were not so lucky. “What we’ve got to do as a community now is bind together and help each other out,“ he added. Well said.
FIRE DISASTER NOT EVEN CLOSE TO BEING OVER
Catastrophic fires whipped up by terrible conditions on Friday and Saturday have claimed lives and homes along the country’s east coast. More than 60 fires continue to burn in NSW, about half of them out of control. And Queensland firefighters are contending with almost 50 fires. Sadly there's little relief in sight with authorities predicting more dangerous conditions this week.
GIVE ME THE OVERVIEW...
• On NSW’s North Coast and Northern Tablelands, three people died - Vivian Chaplain (69yo) and George Nole in the Kangawalla fire, near Glen Innes, and Julie Fletcher (63yo) in the blaze at Johns River, north of Taree. More than 150 homes were destroyed, and 35 people were injured.
• "Never before have we had 17 concurrent emergency warning fires burning at once,” said NSW Rural Fire Service Commander Shane Fitzsimmons of the situation. “The reality is we simply could not get to every individual."
• Across the border in Queensland, fires stretched from Woodford in the south to Cairns in the north. The most severe were near Noosa on the Sunshine Coast and near Yeppoon, north-east of Rockhampton. Unconfirmed reports said about 16 structures including homes have been destroyed or damaged, mainly near Yeppoon.
• Authorities yesterday said there is a catastrophic fire danger warning for tomorrow across NSW's Greater Hunter area, and for the first time on record, the Greater Sydney area. And in Queensland, Wednesday and Thursday are expected to bring dangerous conditions.
• And for some images and videos, a solid collection is here.
WHAT ARE PEOPLE SAYING ABOUT THE LINKS TO CLIMATE CHANGE?
This came up with Greens MP Adam Bandt tweeting on Saturday that the fires show PM Scott Morrison "does not have the climate emergency under control." Morrison went to Taree yesterday, and he wasn’t having a bar of it saying there are “firefighters out there saving someone else's house while their own house is burning down, and when we are in that sort of a situation, that is where attention must be." Labor leader Anthony Albanese yesterday said there would be a time and place to have that discussion.
If you're wondering how you can help, the Red Cross and Salvation Army are accepting donations to help those affected by the fires. Donations can also be made via the checkout at Woolworths Supermarkets to benefit the Salvo appeal.
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WILD WEATHER WORLDWIDE
INDIA AND BANGLADESH - Cyclone Bulbul made landfall in West Bengal, a state of India, and is travelling east towards the Bangladesh ports of Mongla and Chittagong. More than two million people were evacuated across the region with two-metre tidal surges expected.
ENGLAND - Some areas received more rainfall on Thursday night and Friday morning than they would usually get in a month. And given it’s the UK, that’s a lot of rain… Yorkshire and the Midlands were the worst affected with many residents having to be rescued.
AMERICA - It’s bracing for a record-breaking cold snap across the country’s east. The National Weather Service is excited about the Arctic blast it says will deliver “impressively cold air for early-mid November.” Yikes…
OPPOSITION LEADERS RELEASED
Brazil’s former president and left-wing powerbroker, Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, was released from prison on Friday. The country's Supreme Court found he shouldn't have been locked up until his appeals against corruption and money laundering charges had been exhausted. His imprisonment led to his disqualification from last year's presidential election even though he was leading in the polls. That cleared the way for right-winger Jair Bolsonaro to take office in January - he’s now under international pressure for the fire threat to the Amazon rainforest. Lula’s tweet showing he is alive and well was an interesting approach…
And while we have you… In Cambodia, opposition leader Kem Sokha has been released from two years of house arrest after he was accused of plotting to overthrow leader Hun Sen - the world's longest-serving PM. Sokha remains banned from politics, and his political partner Sam Rainsy remains unable to return home from exile.
FORGET A MAJOR PAY INCREASE ANYTIME SOON
Don’t go shooting the messenger… That's the assessment of the Reserve Bank. Usually, it would cut interest rates to rev things up, but that hasn't happened with rates already brought down to a record 0.75% in recent months. Instead, the RBA says it's knocked our confidence with consumers thinking it’s a sign that things must be bad, so we’re hanging onto our hard-earned, which is not good for economic growth. All in all, our central bank thinks inflation, wages, unemployment and our economy will continue along as it has for the next couple of years. Which means we can cut and paste this story for the foreseeable future. Every cloud has a silver lining...
CHINA GETS READY FOR SINGLES DAY
Deep discounts from 200,000 retailers - tick. More than 500 million shoppers at the ready - tick. And Taylor Swift - tick. It can only be Singles Day - the world’s biggest online sales event kicked off by China’s online shopping juggernaut Alibaba. What used to be an anti-Valentine’s Day celebration marked by the 'four singles' in the date 11.11 is now a huge excuse to shop. For context, last year delivered sales of US$30 billion compared with America's $7.9 billion Cyber Monday sales - and that was significantly down on the year before… As for Swift, she’s on the sales circuit having headlined at Amazon’s Prime Day concert in July.
OUI, FRANCE WINS THE FED CUP
The Aussie women lost the Federation Cup final to France in Perth 3-2 late yesterday. The star of the show was France's Kristina Mladenovic - she featured in all their winning games. It was better news for the revenue-enhanced Matildas. They won their friendly match against Chile on Saturday 2-1. And swimmer Cate Campbell became Oz’s biggest money earner in a single year after her recent World Cup series wins. She’s pocketed almost $220,000 for her efforts.
10.30PM - TOO LATE TO START A CONCERT
We're hard-pressed to think of another frivolous lawsuit we support more… Madonna concert-goer Nate Hollander is refusing to get into the groove. Instead, he’s suing the material girl for pushing her Las Vegas concert start time over the borderline from 8.30pm to 10.30pm. The Queen of Pop didn’t comment, not even to say sorry.
SQUIZ THE DAY
11.00am - A minute’s silence for Remembrance Day marking the anniversary of the armistice which ended WWI, and in memory of the millions who have died in all wars and armed conflicts
Federal Parliament resumes with just the Senate sitting this week
Company Earnings Announcement - Elders
Annual General Meeting - Domain Group
ABS Data Release - Overseas Arrivals and Departures, September
Start of National Recycling Week
Anniversary of the hanging of Ned Kelly at Melbourne Gaol (1880)
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