Squiz Today / 30 January 2019

Squiz Today – Wednesday, 30 January


"How some people have launched global empires from filtered little squares on an app will never cease to bewilder us.”

If the experts are confounded, imagine how the rest of us feel… Melbourne-based journalists Michelle Andrews and Zara McDonald are the astute and hilarious commentators on all things pop culture via their podcast Shameless. It’s for “smart women who love dumb stuff", and it tackles everything from celebrity feuds to social media self-care. Apple chose their work as one of the best Aussie podcasts for 2018 (along with The Squiz, ahem). Please welcome Michelle and Zara to this week's Three Minute Squiz.


Ready or not, here the election year comes… If you needed a reminder that we’re heading to the polls, a big speech from Prime Minister Scott Morrison yesterday setting out his government’s economic agenda should have done it. He made clear that pitching the Coalition’s economic credentials against Bill Shorten’s Labor team will be the bedrock of his campaign for re-election.

What, that’s it? No sassy response? Guess we’ll continue… Morrison announced a $750 million package of small business tax incentives, including the extension until mid-2020 of the instant asset write off for investments upping the limit from $20,000 to $25,000. But the big ticket item was a commitment to creating 1.25 million jobs over the next five years. And Morrison made this observation; "At this next election only half of those of voting age will have experienced a recession during their working lives." Labor said the drumming up of fear around the ‘r' word was OTT.

Nada. Zip. Rien. But some say the pitch is missing the mark… Veteran political commentator Paul Kelly last night told Sky News that we’re seeing “a revolt of the middle class” by those who would normally be inclined to vote Liberal. They’re making “a moral case” against Morrison’s mob for being “too conservative”, Kelly says. And to top it off, he says these voters are particularly concerned about the Liberals’ vacating the field on climate change policy. That's a problem for the Morrison Government because it has no electoral buffer. Stick that in your dinner party conversation pipe and don't smoke it...



The rubber hit the road yesterday in America’s official case against Chinese telco giant Huawei. Charges of wire and bank fraud, violating US sanctions on Iran and conspiring to obstruct justice were filed against the company and its finance boss Meng Wanzhou. It was also confirmed that the paperwork for her extradition from Canada to the US has been filed. All that just as trade talks between the nations restarted this week. On the home front, mobile network challenger TPG has abandoned its 5G network rollout because it can’t access Huawei equipment after it was banned over Chinese spying concerns. Huawei has repeatedly said the move would lead to less competition/higher prices.


It’s all being thrashed out as we speak with a vote expected this morning our time. But where things seem to be heading is a deal that has UK PM Theresa May racking up a few more frequent traveller points. She says she gets the message that MPs are particularly unhappy with the Northern Ireland backstop arrangement and that has to be reworked with the European Union for the parliament to support a deal. Not that the EU is interested in reopening the discussion... Also still to be resolved - whether the Brexit date of 29 March will be extended. Watch this space…


Was Kerri-Anne being racist or stating the facts? Was Yumi plain wrong or speaking the truth? These were the questions still lingering as the Kerri-Anne Kennerley/Yumi Stynes morning TV racism row took off yesterday. It was Kennerley's comment during a Network Ten Studio 10 panel discussion that Australia Day protesters should be more concerned about the safety of children and women in outback communities that did it. She received a swift rebuke from Stynes who said she "sounded racist". That was followed by a flurry of radio interviews, Instagram posts, a picket line and a follow-up debate that failed to un-muddy the waters. And by the close of play yesterday, it’s uncertain whether public discourse in our fair land had been enhanced at all.


The latest mass fish kill in the lower Darling River near Menindee, NSW is worse than the previous two recent episodes, locals say, when hundreds of thousands of fish died in the oxygen-starved water. Many residents are angry because they believe it’s a result of the government's poor management that has left little for environmental flows down the river. It's all come as the South Australian Government received a report from its Royal Commission into the Murray Darling Basin. With South Oz at the end of the system, its investigated in the wake of reports of misuse of water resources in NSW and Queensland. The findings will be made public in the coming days/weeks.


It’s the health IT rollout that the government has opted out on a couple of times already… But tomorrow is the day a My Health Record is created for anyone who hasn’t opted out (unless you've already had one created). Which means today’s the day to get on it. Clear as mud? Maybe this will help

And while you’re doing some admin, here’s some information about the FaceTime bug that has raised privacy concerns (in that some users can hear and see the person they are calling without the recipient accepting the call…). Apple says it’s fixing it.


You’re at the world’s biggest event ever where 110 million people are expected to attend over 49 days. It involved bathing, so you get separated from your clothes, phone, everything. A lot of people get lost from their family/kids/companions. Here’s how they try to reunite the lost.


About 7.00am (AEDT) - UK Parliament to vote on the amended Brexit plan

ABS Data Release - Consumer Price Index, December

Anniversary of the killing of Indian political and spiritual leader Mahatma Gandhi (1950)

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