A BREATH OF FRESH AIR
The first of 16 solar-powered aerators will be installed along the Darling River immediately in an effort to help oxygenate hypoxic waters and stave off more fish deaths amidst a “red alert” for blue-green algal blooms.
The Sydney Morning Herald reports that the first of the machines, which can increase water oxygen levels in areas about the size of a basketball court, will go into Pooncarrie close to the site of last week’s mass fish deaths. The news, which follows reports of further fish kills in NSW, comes after Murray-Darling Basin Authority chief executive Phillip Glyde rejected both that exact figure of deaths and accusations of flow mismanagement.
GREENS RUIN MORRISON’S DAY
The federal Greens have offered to conduct citizenship ceremonies through a legal loophole for any local councils not observing Australia Day, in an effort to stymie Scott Morrison’s clampdown.
According to The Australian ($), Greens leader Richard Di Natale has received advice from the parliamentary library indicating that federal MPs can conduct ceremonies “at any time or place of their choosing” and without approval from the immigration minister or the Department of Home Affairs. However, Greens MP Adam Bandt and the party’s nine senators would still require department assistance for practical necessities such as the names of citizenship applicants.
Nationwide protests in Zimbabwe over spiked fuel prices have turned deadly, with reports of several killed and 200 arrested during clashes between protesters and security forces.
The ABC reports that rallies have now hit their second day after the new Zanu-PF Party, mired by the country’s worst economic crisis in a decade, increased the cost of petrol by 150% in an attempt to ease fuel shortages. With fuel prices now the highest in the world at A$4.60 per litre, reports have emerged of the government blocking social media channels, protesters burning tyres and barricading roads, and the headquarters of opposition party Movement for Democratic Change being set alight during the chaos.
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THEY REALLY SAID THAT?
One thing I will say to young people: when someone’s giving you these substances and pills, don’t think you’re going to have a great time. Don’t think it’s going to make your fun experience of a festival better, it’s absolutely not and it’s wrong.
The Labor leader offers some at best questionable advice to the youths.
CRIKEY QUICKIE: THE BEST OF YESTERDAY
“You’d be hard-pressed to find a better metaphor for the body politic than the Murray-Darling river system. Lying at the centre of the country’s fertile and arable east — yes, I’m straining to remember Year 8 geography here — the system’s two major rivers mimic the layout of the aorta and veins in the human body. It’s like a hint from nature: this is a one-time thing. Mess this up, and your country is screwed.”
“Just one week after The Australian published an editorial calling for Australians ‘to be vigilant about those who seek to divide their fellow Australians on racial lines’, the paper has been reported to the Australian Press Council for placing unnecessary emphasis on race in a news story.”
“Marie Kondo, celebrity de-cluttering expert, changed my life. Although, since her TV sensation Tidying Up with Marie Kondo appeared on January 1, such a declaration is unacceptable. Per media opinion, Marie Kondo and her virtuosic storage methods will not change your life.”
READ ALL ABOUT IT
Treasury never supported compulsory superannuation ($) — Paul Keating (Australian Financial Review): “In the course of Clive Palmer telling Australians he will make Australia great again he might explain to the nation’s 12.5 million employees why, in the Senate, his party voted with Joe Hockey to deny every Australian employee an extra 2.5 per cent of superannuation until 2025. The Superannuation Guarantee was legislated by Labor to rise from 9 per cent to 12 per cent by July 1 this year.”
Cotton is not killing fish ($) — Barnaby Joyce (The Australian): “Now let’s deal with the apparent Great Satan, Cubbie Station. Last year it grew only 900ha of cotton and the last time it took water from the river was in 2017. This year, no cotton is being grown at Cubbie, nor is any being grown at Bourke, the other major cotton area upstream from the Menindee Lakes. It is implausible and mischievous to claim the recent fish kill is caused by cotton growing; it is caused by record drought and fluctuating water temperatures.”
Why I no longer support #changethedate — Luke Pearson (IndigenousX): “I had hoped that there were enough Australians who would agree that celebrating Invasion is a pretty shit thing to do, and that changing the date could provide a catalyst for creating a country worthy of celebration. However, after seeing the rise of the #changethedate campaign I have come to the opinion that there are too many people who seem to think that the problem with Australia Day rests solely on the day we celebrate it, not with what we are celebrating.”
HOLD THE FRONT PAGE
WHAT’S ON TODAY
Students for Sensible Drug Policy will launch #BeHeardNotHarmed, the first national, youth-led campaign in support of pill testing, with speeches from Greens leader Richard Di Natale and Victorian upper house member Fiona Patten.
One Nation candidate Mark Latham will launch his 2019 “Save Australia Day” campaign.
Director of the UWA Centre for Software Practice Dr David Glance will present “The facts and fears of facial recognition” at the City of Perth Library.
The OECD will release a global ranking of tax rates showing Australia comes in third highest for new investments at 28.5%.