Squiz Today / 16 July 2020
Squiz Today – Thursday, 16 July
“84 hotdogs in 10 minutes”
That’s what a study says is “the maximum possible limit for a Usain Bolt-type performance” in competitive eating. The current record is held by Joey ‘Jaws’ Chestnut with 75 hot-diggity-dogs. So close and yet so far…
GAME ON FOR CORONAVIRUS FIGHT
The man most likely to have brought COVID-19 from Melbourne to southwestern Sydney has been identified by health officials. He works for a freight company and is thought to have infected colleagues and people at the Crossroads Hotel in Casula. NSW Health Minister Brad Hazzard yesterday said tracking him down wasn't about blame, but part of efforts to keep the community safe. In Victoria, another 238 new cases of COVID-19 were recorded yesterday along with the death of a woman aged in her 90s. Federal Health Minister Greg Hunt yesterday described the situation in NSW as “stable”, and said that the daily numbers coming through from Victoria “are stable, but they are deeply concerning”. And yesterday, the Northern Territory became the latest to put restrictions on the entry of Victorians and Sydneysiders, following in the footsteps of Queensland and South Oz. These ongoing restrictions are making things difficult for travellers and businesses - and even our footy codes.
SO WHAT'S THE GAME PLAN?
Well, by the time the whistle blows on the next round of our various national football competitions, a lot of thought will have gone into keeping play going. For the AFL, that means getting all Victorian-based teams to Queensland. The NRL will leave four teams in Queensland, and the rest are in NSW. The A-League is sticking with a mostly NSW-based competition. And as for Super Rugby, well the Kiwis don’t think our sides are good enough for there to be a competition…
UMM... WHAT THE GAME PLAN FOR HANDLING THE VIRUS?
Oh, right… For us here in Australia, it’s a strategy of ‘suppression’ of the virus, not ‘elimination’, PM Scott Morrison says. "You don't go to the extremes on any of this stuff, you just keep going down the middle, and that's where you make the most ground," he said yesterday. Which means managing outbreaks when they happen to keep our economy somewhat open. And it means the government will have to keep on supporting the economy. So, a drumroll please as we welcome the latest in the ‘Job’ initiatives - JobTrainer. Morrison is set to announce a $1 billion federal/state-funded package to create more than 340,000 training places for school leavers/people looking for work. And the Feds will put $1.5 billion into apprentice/trainee wage subsidies. The details will be announced today.
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TRUMP TAKES ON CHINA OVER HONG KONG
For some time, Hong Kong has received preferential economic treatment from the US when compared to China, but that’s come to an end with Beijing’s new security law over the territory coming into play. Hong Kong will now be treated "the same as mainland China", US President Donald Trump said yesterday. He also signed a law that will “hold responsible the individuals and the entities involved in extinguishing Hong Kong's freedom." China has vowed retaliation, and US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo (might have) hit back with a tweeted dog pic… Also in China’s firing line is the UK after it announced a ban on telco Huawei from its 5G mobile network rollout. Chinese officials say the decision shows the US has too much influence over the UK.
QUICK UPDATES ON SOME RECENT STORIES
WEINSTEIN DEAL SCUTTLED - A US court has rejected the proposed US$19 million settlement between convicted former Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein and some of his accusers. The judge said the accusers’ cases were too varied to be considered together. The settlement would have brought an end to nearly all of the civil claims against Weinstein and his former company for his alleged abuse of dozens of women. The next steps are yet to be determined.
RIVERA DROWNED - Glee's Naya Rivera died due to accidental drowning, an autopsy report confirmed yesterday. The 33yo went missing last week after she went out on a boat on California’s Lake Piru with her 4yo son, who she is said to have saved. Her body was recovered on Monday following a six-day search.
KIWI NATIONALS PICK COLLINS - The Kiwi National Party's Judith Collins is set to face PM Jacinda Ardern at the polls on 19 September after she became the opposition’s fifth leader in four years. She replaces Todd Muller, who resigned earlier this week due to health reasons. Nicknamed ‘Crusher’, Collins has her critics and her fans.
FIGHTING FIRES TO BE TROUBLESOME IN THE CORONA ERA
The ongoing coronavirus pandemic may stop firefighters from travelling from interstate and overseas to provide aid during the next bushfire season, the Royal Commission looking into our disaster preparedness heard yesterday. Last summer’s massive bushfire season saw unprecedented cross-border help, former Rural Fire Service Commissioner Shane Fitzsimmons says, and that could be at risk if borders remained closed, Commissioners heard. Meanwhile, comedian Celeste Barber has called on the NSW Parliament to change the fundraising rules after she was unable to spread the $51 million love she collected through a Facebook fundraiser around various causes. She says she’s worried the inflexibility of the fundraising laws means it “may be the last we see of such generosity on such an international scale."
WORLD’S POPULATION LIKELY TO DROP AFTER 50 YEARS
The world's population is currently 7.8 billion. A new study published in The Lancet says it will peak at 9.7 billion in 2064 before declining to 8.8 billion by the end of the century. In large part, researchers believe that will be a consequence of more women in education and work, and having greater access to contraception - and that’s leading to women choosing to have fewer children. It’s not even across the board. For example, the population of sub-Saharan Africa could triple by 2100. But countries including Japan, Spain, Italy, China and Thailand could see their populations halve, researchers say. “It's extraordinary, we'll have to reorganise societies," Professor Christopher Murray said.
PRECIOUS INDIGENOUS ITEMS TO COME HOME
About 100,000 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander artefacts that are currently held in 194 international collections, many of which were stolen, are set to be repatriated under a $10 million program announced by Indigenous Affairs Minister Ken Wyatt. It comes as a Sydney auction house this week removed 11 artefacts from sale, including sacred etched stones and wooden objects from Central and Western Australia, over concerns about their origins. "Culture is what defines us, and we should all work to return items to community, to heal and walk together towards a more reconciled nation," Wyatt says.
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ABS Data Release - Labour Force, June
Birthdays for actor Will Ferrell (1967) and golfer Adam Scott (1980)
• the publication of JD Salinger's novel Catcher in the Rye (1951)
• the launch of the historic Apollo 11 mission sending Neil Armstrong, Buzz Aldrin and Michael Collins to the moon (1969)
• the birthdays of American journalist and civil rights activist Ida B Wells (1862) and entertainer Ginger Rogers (1911).
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