Squiz Today / 26 February 2019
Squiz Today – Tuesday, 26 February
"Doing a Kepa”
REQUESTS FOR A DEADLINE EXTENSION
No, this isn’t a retelling of the most frequent conversation we had with our university tutors back in the day... Delaying the conclusion of big deals currently being negotiated is something US President Donald Trump and UK PM Theresa May had in common yesterday as they tackle two of the biggest global issues going around.
LET’S START WITH TRUMP...
This isn’t about his upcoming cuddle with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, important though that is. It’s about America’s negotiations with China on trade. With negotiators under pressure to meet the 1 March deadline before the US was due to lob a new round of tariff increases on Chinese goods to the tune of $200 billion, Trump yesterday said he’ll put that on hold. Analysts say it’s a sign his former hardline on China is as eroded as a Queensland beach. A new deadline hasn’t been set, but with Xi Jinping scoring an invitation to Trump’s Mar-a-Lago golf resort at the end of next month, pundits mulled that Florida could be a good place to put the trade war to bed. Markets breathed a sigh of relief.
AND WHAT’S GOING DOWN IN BREXIT TOWN?
MPs won’t vote on a new deal this week. That’s been delayed until 12 March giving Theresa May time to have more chats (and pool lessons) with European Union leaders in her bid to get them to move on the issue that it all seems to be hinging on - the Northern Ireland backstop. With the UK’s departure from the EU due to kick off on 29 March, critics say May is cutting is super fine to settle a deal-backed Brexit. Even her senior ministers are making threats and setting deadlines…
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URGENT SEARCH FOR TOWNSVILLE BOYS
The 3yo and 5yo went missing from the suburb of Cranbrook late yesterday. CCTV footage captured them walking down a street towards the Ross River. An amber alert has been issued, but police hope they are "curled up somewhere". “Certainly we are looking at every aspect of it but we are hopeful that they will be found overnight or early (Tuesday)," Senior Sergeant Ian Wilkie said last night.
SERENA CARTOON GIVEN THE ALL CLEAR
It was September last year when Mark Knight, cartoonist with Melbourne’s Herald Sun, was hit by a wave of condemnation for his depiction of tennis champ Serena Williams losing it in the US Open final. Critics said his work represented Williams as having “exaggerated lips and nose reminiscent of racist depictions of black people in the US during the Jim Crow era.” He was backed by the paper, and yesterday the Australian Press Council said no media standards were breached. Knight said he was “very happy” with the outcome. The development was again picked up on international news sites, like this report.
BANGLADESHI PLANE HIJACKER KILLED
A Sunday afternoon flight from Bangladesh’s capital of Dhaka heading to Dubai made an emergency landing in Chittagong (south-east of Dhaka) after a man attempted to hijack the plane by taking a crew member hostage and threatening to storm the cockpit. Mohammad Palash Ahmed, a 25yo Bangladeshi man, was shot and killed by special forces after 143 passengers and the crew were evacuated from the Bangladesh Biman plane. He had claimed there was a bomb on board, but authorities say they only found a toy pistol on the man. Reports say he staged the attack because was having marital troubles and wanted to talk to the prime minister.
SCALPING MEDICAL APPOINTMENTS
Hospitals in Beijing have installed facial recognition technology to catch more than 2,000 people who have been queueing up and then on-selling their spot in the line for a medical appointment. It’s this sort of tech that’s being rolled out in China to reward good citizens and punish those who don’t toe the line. The ‘social credits’ system - where you can be prevented from making travel bookings if you’ve skipped paying a fine - is now in play.
BHP SETTLES RUNAWAY TRAIN CASE
Think of your worst day at work and times it by 600 million. Dollars. That’s was the cost associated with the derailment of a runaway BHP train laden with iron ore late last year. The train took off without its driver, Peter Frick, in Western Australia’s Pilbara region and had to be stopped by the control centre in Perth which forced it off the rails. The driver had stopped the train to get out and inspect a wagon, but it got going again leaving him behind. And we’re not talking about the Puffing Billy here - it was 268 wagons choka-block with iron ore that took off for 92km reaching speeds of 110km/hour. The driver was let go by BHP weeks after the expensive mishap, and he took it to the Fair Work umpire. Yesterday a confidential settlement was confirmed. What a Fricking story…
GOING GAGA AT THE OSCARS
Let’s just call it for what it was - a giant PDA between Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper. And oddly enough, we’re cool with that. Their duet from A Star Is Born, which won an Oscar, was best described as “intimate”. And from a performance point of view, it was kinda amazing given it’s just the second time they’ve performed it together live. But we digress... Best Actress Olivia Colman (The Favourite) was delightfully flustered. Best Actor Rami Malek (Bohemian Rhapsody) was cool, calm and collected… until he took a tumble after the awards. And Green Book, the film about an “unlikely friendship between a bigoted bouncer and a virtuoso black musician” took out best film, not that BlacKkKlansman director Spike Lee was thrilled about it… Other winners, Netflix’s Roma and Black Panther. All the winners are here. And you might want to put aside some time to check out Gaga’s jewels and the red carpet gallery…
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ABS Data Release - Producer Price Indexes, December
Company Results Announcements - Afterpay; Caltex Australia; nib Health Funds
Anniversary of the birthday of Lionel Logue, the Australian speech therapist who treated King George VI (1880)
One good turn deserves another. Read the email every day this week and you'll go into the draw for a $100 gift card to spend at Woolworths.
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