Squiz Today / 02 May 2018
Squiz Today – Wednesday, 2 May
“Remember a little faux fur goes a long way.”
Words we wish we’d heard design hero Neale Whitaker utter during the unfortunate mid-90s. You probably know him as the urbane, quick-witted judge on the top-rating TV show The Block - but did you also know that he started his illustrious media career as a protégé of the London PR maven who was the inspiration for Absolutely Fabulous? Whitaker’s fun Three Minute Squiz is here.
PELL TO FACE TRIAL ON CHILD ABUSE CHARGES
Cardinal George Pell was yesterday committed to stand trial on historic child abuse charges from his time as a priest in Ballarat in the 70s and as Archbishop of Melbourne in the 90s. The most serious charges against him, also from Ballarat in the 70s, were dismissed. Yesterday’s committal to stand trial makes him the world’s most senior member of the Catholic church to be tried on child abuse charges.
REMIND ME HOW WE GOT HERE…
Pell is a divisive figure who worked his way up the church hierarchy to become a close adviser to the Pope. As Australia’s most senior Catholic he has been criticised on many fronts over many years for his handling of child abuse claims. Pell started out as a parish priest in Ballarat in the 60s – a diocese that has been linked to hundreds of child abuse allegations. He yesterday pleaded not guilty to the charges.
WHAT HAPPENS NEXT?
There is a directions hearing in the County Court today where it’s expected a date will be set for a trial before a jury. Speculation yesterday said a trial could be up to a year away. In the meantime, Pell is on bail and unable to leave Australia.
SQUIZ THE REST
COMMONWEALTH BANK IN THE NAUGHTY CORNER
The key points are:
• Banking regulator APRA yesterday released a review of the Commonwealth Bank’s governance and culture that found it was “complacent” and “insular”.
• The review also said CBA had “an overly collegial and collaborative working environment”. Which doesn’t sound too bad until you remember that colleague who is overly familiar and wants to ‘share’ work tasks all the time. Ugh.
• New CEO Matt Comyn said he’s on it.
• Treasurer Scott Morrison said the report (which was commissioned in the days before Team Turnbull thought the banking Royal Commission was the best thing since John Howard) was required reading for all Aussie company directors.
• Pundits said any sanctions would likely be left to the Royal Commission to dole out.
NEW TRANSNATIONAL CRIME BOSS
There’s a new cop on the beat with the announcement that Karl Kent (not Clark, as we were calling him all yesterday) has been appointed Australia’s first Transnational, Serious and Organised Crime Coordinator. It’s the sort of title that should probably have the word ‘prevention’ in there somewhere, but you know what they’re getting at… Kent will be tasked with fighting cyber-crime, child exploitation and drug trafficking.
And while we have you… former AFL coach Mark “Bomber” Thompson has been charged with drug possession and trafficking offences. He was released on bail last night and will return to court on 25 May.
HOUSE PRICES FALL WHILE INTEREST RATES HOLD
Property analysts CoreLogic yesterday said the nationwide snapshot of home prices showed a fall of 0.1% for the previous 12 months – the first drop since 2012. It pointed to reduced investor lending, particularly in the Sydney and Melbourne markets, as the reason for the fall. And the Reserve Bank yesterday left interest rates on hold at 1.5% for the 19th consecutive meeting. It’s happy the labour market is going well but wants to see wages increase. Don’t we all…
HELLO? I CAN’T HEAR YOU…
That’s because if you were trying to use Telstra’s 4G network between 1.00-3.00pm yesterday afternoon, you probably weren’t able to make or take a call. "The issue was caused by technical changes made ahead of upgrades to mobile traffic control equipment in Telstra's Exhibition Street exchange in Melbourne,” the telco said. Clear as mud... Plenty of people took to social media to complain about not receiving calls that they would probably ignore on any other day…
JUDD TAKES ON WEINSTEIN
Actress Ashley Judd is suing former Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein for harassment and defamation. She has accused the former movie heavyweight of holding back her career after she refused his advances. Particularly, she says she was denied a lead role in the Lord of the Rings trilogy after he allegedly told director Peter Jackson not to hire her because she was "nightmare to work with". Weinstein denies the claim, but Jackson says that's what happened. Judd said she would donate the proceeds of a successful case to the Time's Up fighting fund.
THE ETIQUETTE OF THE MEETING
The modern-day manners stakes were significantly raised recently with revelations that Tesla boss Elon Musk wants his staff to leave meetings they don’t think are productive. Because it’s rude for people to waste your time. So we were thrilled to read about Amazon boss Jeff Bezos’ ‘two pizza rule’. Not so fun is the part where he has a 6-page note prepared for every meeting that is read by participants in silence before the discussion starts. Those funny billionaires, what would they know?
SQUIZ THE DAY
PM Malcolm Turnbull and French President Emmanuel Macron to sign a pact to combat cyber warfare
ABS Data Release - Selected Living Cost Indexes, March 2018.
Woolworths Group's Third Quarter Sales Announcement
Anniversary of the death of al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden (2011)
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