Maggots found on chicken bought at Hunter Nando’s restaurant

13/12/2018

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‘Shocked’: Emy Wamboi and her seven-year-old son Davie Koiya discovered maggots on the chicken they bought at the Nando’s restaurant at Westfield Kotara. Picture: Nick BielbyA video showing maggots squirming on a chicken at a Hunter Nando’s store has been shared more than 1500 times on social media.
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Emy Wamboi posted the video to Facebook after she discovered a cluster of maggots on the chicken she bought from the Westfield Kotara store last week.

“I am not going back there,” she wrote on Facebook.

“I have not eaten chicken since then yuck.”

Ms Wamboi told theNewcastle Heraldthat her seven-year-old son Davie had already eaten some of the chicken when the friend they were dining with pointed out that something was moving on the surface of the chicken.

“We were very shocked, knowing has high hygiene [standards],” she said.

One of the videos Ms Wamboi posted has been viewed more than 100,000 times.

A statement from Nando’son Tuesday morning said the company would like to apologise to Ms Wamboi.

It said Nando’s had since conducted a “thorough investigation” –of which theykept Ms Wamboi updated –and found the Kotara restaurant “followed all correct cooking and hygiene procedures”.

“Nando’s has implemented a full food safety investigation which confirmed there was no other contamination in the restaurant to any raw or cooked food items, ingredients or on any preparation surfaces,” it said.

A screenshot of from the video posted to Facebook.

“In addition we also independently reported the incident to the local councils health authorities.”

The statement claimed that a fly or maggots could not have survived the 350 degree grilltemperature that the made-to-order chicken would have been subject to before it was served.

“As the restaurant is open to the environment and the maggots were found on the skin of the chicken, we believe this incident is the result of an airborne fly landing on the chicken in the short period of time between when it was plated and subsequently discovered by the customer at her table,” the statement said.

“At the time of the incident Nando’s apologised to the customer and provided her with a full refund.”

But Ms Wamboi said she found it hard to believe that a fly could have landed, produced eggs which then hatched to release maggots within the few minutes between her order being cooked and served.

“It does not truly make sense,” she said.

“That’s not an excuse.”

Newcastle Jets W-League: Tara Andrews keen to bounce back after season off and Matildas disappointment

13/12/2018

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TARA Andrews wasn’t banking on making the Matildas’ OIympic squad for Rio last year, but missing out still hurt.
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Tara Andrews at Jets training at No.2 Sportsground on Tuesday. Picture: Marina Neil

And the disappointment of not making the final cut left the former Newcastle Jets vice-captain questioning her future in the sport.

But after a season off, the 23-year-old feels refreshed and ready to return to the W-League with her homeclub.

Andrews, fellow attacker Jenna Kingsley and the Jets’ 2016-17 player of the year, Cassidy Davis, were confirmed on Tuesday as signings as coachCraig Deans buildstowards the season-opener on October 29 against Western Sydney at McDonald Jones Stadium.

“I wanted a year off because we play winter and summer and you don’t really ever get a break to go on holiday,” saidAndrews, whoplayed for North West Sydney in the NSW NPL last winter.

“I just needed a mental and physical break as well just to see what else is out there.

“I went on holidays a couple of times and just enjoyed myself for the first time in a while. Just doing what I wanted.

“But I always had the intention of coming back. I just needed that year to kind of refresh myself.

“I was with the Matildas in that year and didn’t make the Olympic squad. It was kind of like, ‘What am I doing?Do I still want to do this?’.”

Andrews debuted for the Matildas in late 2015 and featured in their pre-Olympic training camps before falling short of a ticket to Rio.

“I knew I was always on the fringe. The Matildas obviously havea lot of good forwards,” she said.

“It wasn’t like I thought I’d get in, it was just after that it was like, ‘I don’t know what I want to do’. I was disappointed.”

She was looking forward to the challenge of getting back in the W-League, especially with the Jets potentially signing a US striker with similar qualities.

“Deansy has a few good recruits coming in, soI think we’ll do quite well,” she said.

“Obviously the past two years coming fifth, we’ve been just off the pace so hopefully it’s going to be better this year and we’ll make the top four. We’ll have some good players to do that with.

“There’sgoing to be another striker there so it’sgoing to be another challenge for me and competition to see if I can push myself to get better.

“That will be good because in the past there hasn’t always been that other No.9 there to push me.”

Deans said Andrews would be a welcomed addition as an attacking option and role model for the young Jets squad and he believed she would“do better without the pressure to be the top scorer”.

“The reason I changed some of the attacking players that we had was that it was all the same, everyone was quick, small and with some improvements technically that we needed,” Deans said.

“Tara is probably the complete opposite. She’s tall, technically quite good and she’s smart, although she doesn’t have the speed of some of the other girls. I think in a lot of ways we missed her last year, so it’s good she’s coming back.”

As for adding to her two Matildas caps, Andrews said: “It will be pretty tough, but I’d definitely like to get back there if I can.

“Obviously it comes down to how I’m playing and if I’m enjoying it. If I’m doing well enough to get a look in, that will be great, but I’ll take it as it comes.”

Watershed moment signals phase two of housing debate

13/12/2018

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A watershed moment is under way in ‘s housing affordability debate.
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Instead of continuing to bang the drum of “keeping the first-home ownership dream alive”, Victoria’s premier has proposed sweeping changes to the state’s tenancy laws in an attempt to improve the prospect of long-term renting.

A consolation prize, yes, but an important line in the sand for the 31 per cent of ns who rent their home. They may not be any closer to buying a house but the leader of the country’s second-most populated state is trying to throw them a bone. State governments will be watching closely, which means renters and landlords in Sydney should be, too.

Premier Daniel Andrews has announced plans to change rental laws so that tenants could not be evicted without proper cause, notice to vacate be lifted to 120 days, the introduction of a blacklist for complaints against landlords and agents, and other sweeping changes to rules against pets and making minor cosmetic changes to the property.

An unofficial bidding system, where hopeful tenants offer more than the proposed rent, will also be stamped out.

“For too long we’ve had an imbalance and things have not been as fair as they should be,” Mr Andrews told Melbourne on Sunday.

“The landlord and the agent have all the power and given how tight the market is, the tenant can’t speak out and has no voice.”

The move comes just months after the Andrews government announced Victorian first-home buyers will be granted a stamp duty tax concession for houses between $600,000 and $750,000. A helpful and well-meaning attempt to boost first-home ownership in the state, but of course the brick wall remains – a 20 per cent deposit on a $600,000 property is $120,000 cash. That’s a lot of money to stump up, especially when national wages growth is at record lows.

First home buyers, whose parents can’t help with a guarantor loan or cash, will have to wait until the market corrects, which could take a very long time.

That’s why Sunday’s move from Mr Andrews is significant – it’s an admission that renting is no longer a short-term waiting room before home ownership. And it’s not just Victoria, across renting is increasingly where people spend a large chunk of their lives – even raise their families.

Of course, any suggestion that renters be handed more power is met with quick and loud objection. But while Victoria’s peak real estate body warns “any imbalance in the market has the ability to cause a rental crisis”, few other experts seem to agree.

“Landlords who were happy to provide those rental properties will be leaving the market angry,” Real Estate Institute of Victoria chief executive Gil King said in reaction to the announcement, adding that the organisation will be looking to strike out as many of the proposed changes as possible.

“The impact is going to be rents go up because of less stock on market for tenants.”

That assessment is “economically illiterate”, according to the Grattan Institute chief executive John Daley, with the positives of throwing renters a bone expected to far outweigh the negatives.

“There’s very little truth to it,” Mr Daley told Domain.

“When a landlord walks away from a property, what happens? Either someone buys and is prepared to rent it out, or someone buys it to live in it, who would otherwise have been renting.

“The number of instances where a landlord walks away and the property is left vacant is infinitesimally small.”

It’s true that the number of rental properties may drop, home ownership may rise and rents could also lift, according to Mr Daley, but none of those are expected to occur on a meaningful, or even visible, scale.

“Overall, this package provides a lot of things that are very valuable to tenants and actually don’t cost landlords very much,” Mr Daley said.

“How much does it really cost you as a landlord to have tenants occasionally bang things into the walls? To be blunt, not that much. How much does it really cost to let them have a pet, given that they’ll have to clean up afterwards? Not that much.”

That’s not to say that property investors might not be rethinking their portfolio at the moment, just that changes like those proposed on Sunday would be unlikely to have anything to do with it.

Interest rates are tipped to start rising as soon as next year, house price gains have cooled and are expected to continue to do so, and the n Prudential Regulation Authority is busily clamping down on how much of major bank balance sheets can be dedicated to investor and interest-only lending, which has the effect of pushing mortgage rates higher.

Meanwhile federal tax rules around negative gearing and capital gains tax exemptions remain untouched and continue to be key drivers of interest in the property market.

Those are surely a much more central consideration for property investors than whether their tenants can hang up a picture, keep a pet or be protected against arbitrary eviction.

“The rental sector is changing and we all have to come to grips with that,” Professor Kath Hulse of the n Housing and Urban Research Institute at Swinburne University told Domain.

“[The Victorian government] is trying to connect two things which have been disconnected. One is residential tenancy laws and the other is housing policy – they’ve been separate worlds, really.

“We’re used to thinking about this in a terribly adversarial way. If people are going to be renting longer we need to get real about it.”

Ashes bolt from the Blue

13/10/2019

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NSW quick Lauren Cheatle has landed an unexpected Ashes call up as one of six Breakers named to take on World Cup winners England this summer.
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The young left-armer joins South n all-rounder Tahlia McGrath in the squad, both having recently returned from injury, but there was no place for NSW veteran Sarah Aley despite her trip to England for the recent World Cup.

A shoulder injury sidelined Cheatle for six months this year and cost her a spot at that tournament, but she returned for the Breakers on the weekend to push her Ashes claims.

She was wicketless through seven overs against Victoria but selectors saw enough of the 18-year-old to bring her back into the n squad.

“It’s good to see Lauren Cheatle come back from injury, she bowled well on the weekend, and she’s still got a couple of weeks to go before that first ODI,” national selector Shawn Flegler said.

“Tahlia McGrath has just come back from injury as well and performed well over the weekend with bat and ball.

“We’ve got good coverage across all bowling options.

“We certainly would have loved to see bowlers put their hands up and take five fas and demand selection. We didn’t see that over the weekend but we still think we’ve got bowlers who can do roles that they’ll need to do during the ODIs, the Test match and the T20s that will come after that.”

A squad of 14 was picked for the three ODIs against the world number one team, which begin on October 22 in Brisbane.

NSW youngster Belinda Vakarewa didn’t make the 14, but was the extra in the 15-strong Test squad. The Test squad will be trimmed to 13 after a three-day practice match against an ACT invitational XI.

All four spin bowlers from ‘s failed World Cup campaign have retained their positions, despite selectors expressing a desire to adjust the balance of the team.

Jess Jonassen, ‘s number-one ranked bowler for the last few years, was always going to be selected while Kristen Beams’ five wickets against NSW on the weekend couldn’t have been better timed.

Ex-Breaker Ashleigh Gardner and fellow South n Scorpion Amanda-Jade Wellington also made the cut.

‘s batting looks super solid despite the absence of superstar Meg Lanning, and newly anointed captain Rachael Haynes is already leading from the front after scoring an opening-day hundred for NSW on the weekend.

Alyssa Healy, Alex Blackwell, Beth Mooney, Nicole Bolton and Elyse Villani also started the domestic season strongly with the bat.

“Meg’s obviously a world class player, she’s the best batter in the world, she’d be any loss to any team that she’d be a part of,” Haynes said.

“Our batters are really rising to the occasion, they showed that in the runs that they scored.

“I feel very confident that we’ve got the depth in our team, that’s a great strength of n cricket.

“England have shown that they’re really going to bring an aggressive brand of cricket, we’re very much prepared for that.

“The two best countries in the world are coming together in this series. It’s going to be a really well fought contest.

“We certainly want to win and we’re going to be doing anything in our power to do that.”

Kristen Beams VIC Alex Blackwell (vc) NSW Nicole Bolton WA Lauren Cheatle NSW Ashleigh Gardner SA Rachael Haynes (c) NSW Alyssa Healy NSW Jess Jonassen QLD Tahlia McGrath SA Beth Mooney QLD Ellyse Perry NSW Megan Schutt SA Elyse Villani WA Amanda-Jade Wellington SA

Kristen Beams VIC Alex Blackwell (vc) NSW Nicole Bolton WA Lauren Cheatle NSW Ashleigh Gardner SA Rachael Haynes (c) NSW Alyssa Healy NSW Jess Jonassen QLD Tahlia McGrath SA Beth Mooney QLD Ellyse Perry NSW Megan Schutt SA Belinda Vakarewa NSW Elyse Villani WA Amanda-Jade Wellington SA

Game of Thrones actor hints at intense security measures

13/10/2019

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A Game of Thrones actor has hinted at the intense security measures HBO has put in place to protect season eight’s scripts.
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Liam Cunningham, who plays Ser Davos Seaworth, says the security measures are so complex that he has trouble accessing his lines.

“I got all [six] scripts,” he told IGN. “[But] I can’t open them because of all of the security and I can’t work it out. I can’t open them. It’s like pulling a pin out of a grenade.”

The heightened security is unsurprising given the show’s seventh season was beset by a series of leaks.

Game of Thrones star Liam Cunningham. Photo: Sophie Schirmer

But the interview has sent Game of Thrones fans into a frenzy, with many of the view that Cunningham was suggesting HBO keeps digital scripts in a secure location that are only able to be viewed on approved devices. (Imagine, for a moment, Kit Harington being ushered into a sealed room somewhere in Belfast to view the scripts on an iPad that’s definitely not connected to wi-fi.)

The majority of secretive film and TV projects use paper scripts to prevent hackers from obtaining digital copies. As an additional security measure, the paper is lined with a filament preventing them from being photocopied.

Paper scripts may also come with large watermarks or hidden details so that if copies find their way online, the source of the leak is able to be identified.

In addition, big-name films and TV shows usually only distribute partial scripts. This ensures actors are able to learn their character’s scenes and, if the papers find their way into the wrong hands, the entire storyline isn’t given away.

For example, the Twin Peaks script was about 800 pages long but only one actor, reportedly, (Kyle MacLachlan) was given access to the entire script.

While HBO hasn’t revealed the exact security measures around the Game of Thrones season eight scripts, it’s clear the TV giant is guarding the ending very, very closely – even from its own cast.

New documentary explores the nature of intuition

13/10/2019

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Filmmaker Bill Bennett’s documentary PGS.?? Carolyn Myss interview. Filmmaker Bill Bennett’s documentary PGS.?? Bill Bennett at Varanasi.
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A flash of intuition saved Bill Bennett’s life.

The n director of Kiss or Kill, In A Savage Land and The Nugget was driving to the airport early one morning in New Orleans when he heard a voice telling him to slow down as he approached an intersection.

“There was no traffic on the road, it was dark and I’d never heard a voice like this before,” he said. “I had a green light up ahead and I wanted to accelerate to make sure I got through but this voice said ‘slow down’ again.

“So I slowed down then this huge truck ran a red light on a cross street and came through the intersection. I slammed on the brakes and it just missed.”

That experience was so powerful that Bennett has made a documentary to understand what intuition is – interviewing research scientists, quantum physicists, psychiatrists and religious and spiritual authorities.

Certain there was nothing physical that could have warned him on a subconscious level – a rumbling on the road, a shadow or an animal scurrying away – he went looking for answers elsewhere.

After three years of work, the documentary PGS: Intuition Is Your Personal Guidance System has its world premiere in Sydney this week.

A former journalist who worked for Four Corners and 60 Minutes before making 16 feature films and nine documentaries, Bennett said he approached the subject with scepticism.

But making the documentary – interviewing 75 people around the world over three years – had changed his life.

“I’m no longer a sceptic,” he said. “We all have intuition, whether or not we believe it or acknowledge it or not. I’ve come to believe it’s a system, a part of us, like our circulatory system, our central nervous system or our immune system, except it works in the ‘energetic’ realm.”

Bennett believes intuition is “wired into our physical system” in what many eastern cultures see as the body’s energy system.

What he learned has made him happier and less fearful.

“I liken my life to being like a shopping trolley in a supermarket aisle,” he said. “I’ve got dirt in one of the wheels and I’m bouncing off the aisles as I go down towards the yoghurt at the end which is what I want to get to.

“Now the dirt is making its way out of the wheel and I’m started to get a clear path.”

Bennett said his perspective on filmmaking had changed.

“When I think about the bad films that I’ve made, they’re the films where I didn’t follow my intuitive impulses,” he said. “When I think about the films that worked, they’re the films where I have … the good films that I’ve done came quickly and easily and without effort and they had a clear path through. Even though I didn’t realise at the time, I was acting totally intuitively.”

The best example is the 1997 road movie Kiss Or Kill, which Bennett wrote, funded and finished shooting in just five months. It won best film and director at the n Film Institute Awards.

“I’ve shifted from being a person who sets about achieving goals through force of will – through Type A personality traits – into being a person who is sensitive to the shifts and nuances around me and listens to my intuitive impulses and makes decisions accordingly,” he said.

“What I’m now discovering is that in fact I’m now more productive because of that, which is really weird.”

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Shares fall for first session in three

13/10/2019

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ASX 050322 ASSET PICTURE BY PETER BRAIG / afrphotos苏州夜总会招聘 asx melbourne, stock exchange, interests, shares, share market, volatile share market, money, dividend, risk. victoria, australia AFR FIRST USE ONLY afrphotos苏州夜总会招聘 SPECIALX 220305 caution sign, dangern shares fell for the first time in three sessions, dragged lower by the big miners.
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The S&P/ASX 200 Index declined 6 points, or 0.1 per cent, to close at 5733.3 on Tuesday, trimming this year’s gain to 1.2 per cent. The n dollar was stronger at US77.84??, up 0.4 per cent.

Rio Tinto declined 4?? to $69.16 as a growing number of short sellers target the stock as overvalued. Short positions in Rio have risen to 9 per cent, the highest level on record, according to ASIC’s short position data, which dates back to 2010.

Treasury Wine Estates fell 1.4 per cent to $14 after advising “limited damage” to its assets in proximity to the North California fires.

Commonwealth Bank of slipped 0.5 per cent to $76.35 after UBS argued the Austrac allegations might lead to the bank lowering its internal return on equity targets. This level is believed to be between 16 and 17 per cent.

AMP shares rallied, advancing 3.6 per cent to $4.96, after it was upgraded to “outperform” by Credit Suisse. AMP shares have underperformed the market by about 10 per cent since the release of its first-half results.

Platinum Asset Management added 2 per cent to $6.67 after the global equities manager showed funds under management swelled by around $1 billion to $24.8 billion at the end of September.

The A2 Milk Company, which is tipped to enter the top 100 at the December index rebalance, according to broker Wilsons, closed at a record high $6.91, up 3 per cent.

Business conditions were “rock solid” at 14 points in September, unchanged from August, according to NAB’s monthly business survey, and tracking at just below pre-financial crisis peaks.

Business confidence edged up to 7 points, from 5 points, reversing course after a sharp fall in the last survey.

“Our previous concerns around the consumption outlook remain well entrenched, especially following very poor retail sales in August and stubbornly weak retail conditions in the NAB survey,” the bank’s chief economist Alan Oster said.

What moved the market Curve control

The Bank of Japan has managed to scale back its purchases of Japanese government bonds since introducing its zero per cent yield target, Capital Economics finds. In the year to September, it acquired just ??63 trillion ($72 billion), the least since 2014. Previously, movements in US treasuries would have a significant impact on Japanese debt but that has changed under the yield-targeting regime. Capital thinks that the BoJ will cut its annual purchases to ??50 trillion by the end of 2018 and to ??40 trillion by the end of 2019, when yields will still be close to zero. Low impact

ANZ currency strategists argue a repatriation tax holiday is looking increasingly likely in the US as a consequence of the Trump administration proposing a one-off tax of 10 per cent on untaxed foreign profits. As for its effect on the dollar, don’t count on a big impact. Most foreign profits are already in US dollars – potentially as high as 80 per cent for S&P 500 companies. When the US introduced the Homeland Investment Act in 2004 allowing companies to bring back foreign profits at a 5.25 per cent tax rate, businesses repatriated about $US362 billion the following year. Flat and rising

‘s domestic gas prices have tripled since 2014, according to NAB, which relies on its forecasts for oil and the n dollar to infer gas prices would be “flat to higher” for east coast customers in the year ahead. The domestic east coast gas price mirrors the Japanese imported gas price, it finds. The main factor driving the regional LNG gas price is oil plus a spread. “We are left with the conclusion that where the crude oil price goes so will the domestic gas price.” NAB’s forecast for WTI oil is $US51 at the end of 2017, rising to $US58 at the end of 2018. Index watch

The A2 Milk Company will be into the top 100 at the expense of Vocus or Tatts Group, predicts broker Wilsons ahead of the December index rebalance. It also tips AMP to make way for Amcor in the top 20; Incitec Pivot to move out of the top 50 and Cochlear to move in; and Lynas Corp, Pilbara Minerals and Wisetech Global to go into the 200, unseating FlexiGroup, Japara Healthcare, Regis Healthcare or again, Tatts. The Tabcorp and Tatts merger delays mean if approved, it will be implemented before or as part of the rebalance. Aristocrat Leisure

Deutsche Bank is sticking with its “buy” recommendation on poker machine maker Aristocrat after visiting the Global Gaming Expo trade show and meeting with casinos. The stock is trading at a 22 per cent discount to the broker’s valuation of $27.50, and it is forecasting gains in market share as new products are introduced and new categories added. In the US market, monthly gaming revenues are up 5.9 per cent year-on-year in August and 1.3 per cent in the 11 months to August 2017. The broker takes a positive view on the company’s mobile gaming applications based on their rankings in respective app stores, and notes Aristocrat’s earnings growth is higher than ASX industrial stocks. The stock traded at $21.68 on Tuesday.

If Taumalolo has a problem with Kidwell, it’s not over drugs bans

13/10/2019

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??????Tonga coach Kristian Woolf says he doesn’t know if Jason Taumalolo has a poor relationship with New Zealand boss David Kidwell – but is convinced the superstar back-rower is not aggrieved at the suspension of two Kiwis for cocaine abuse.
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Woolf at the weekend attempted to hose down suggestions Taumalolo’s decision to pick the Mate Ma over New Zealand was a result of displeasure with the Kiwi camp.

However, when the 24-year-old was asked in another interview if he had a problem with coach Kidwell, he replied: “I’m sorry I can’t answer that”.

“Whether there’s something there between Jason and Kidwell, I don’t know – it’s not something I asked him about,” Woolf told Fairfax Media.

“But I did ask him about this link between his decision and (Jesse) Bromwich and (Kevin) Proctor and he actually scoffed at that.”

Woolf’s comments suggest there may be some bridges that need mending before Taumalolo returns to the Kiwis fold – but the reasons for any tension aren’t as obvious as the exclusion of forwards Bromwich and Proctor from the World Cup for being captured on camera using cocaine after this year’s Anzac Test.

Taumalolo also said at the weekend he couldn’t say if he’d play for New Zealand again.

“I thought Jason answered the questions well,” he said. “Any issue he has with David Kidwell or the Kiwis or anyone is best handled in person, not in public through the papers.

“I liked his answer.”

Woolf responded calmly to the uproar about five players – Taumalolo, Andrew Fifita, David Fusitu’a, Manu Ma’u and Sio Siua Taukeiaho – choosing Tonga over tier one nations.

But he also has a clear message to aggrieved n and New Zealand coaches and officials: welcome to my world.

“These things happen to us every single camp – players only letting us know until the night before a team is named that they are in or out,” he said.

“Addin Fonua-Blake played for us mid-season and now he’s in the Kiwis squad. No-one says anything about that.

“Andrew Fifita had just arrived in camp with us when he was called up by earlier this year. I’ve not had guys pulled off the training paddock to go straight into camp with the Aussies or Kiwis but I know it happened previously.

“I understand why these teams are upset at the lateness of some of the calls because they’re not used to it.

“But we certainly are.

“Let me tell you: I’d rather these boys had made a decision earlier, too! From the point of view of sponsors and getting other players on board, it would have been a bit help to me as Tonga coach.”

Woolf said some of the personal criticism of Taumalolo and Fifita had been “off the the mark”.

“To call them anything other than brave ??? in life the easiest path is the popular path,” he said. “There’s safety in numbers.

“These boys have gone away from that safety as well as significant financial rewards to follow their hearts and they’ve created enormous interest in the World Cup.

“I think they should be applauded.”

RLWC chief executive Andrew Hill said his organisation had advised players and officials on how the rules worked but had not actively recruited for tier two countries. Still, the competition’s head office would have had some idea of what was afoot.

Asked to outline the timeline surrounding the decisions of the five “rebels”, Woolf said: “I had heard that some of the boys were considering making this call but I didn’t do any planning around it.

“I’d heard it before.

“You’ve got to understand how players feel a connection to two countries. But in the end, profile and financial clout usually wins out. Jason made his decision a couple of days out, when Andrew told me he felt he had to play for us I advised him to call Mal (Meninga) and Mal was hugely supportive.

“David Fusitu’a was to-ing and fro-ing, another guy was on holiday in Fiji???.”

Woolf said a great example of the rules being just as well as beneficial to the international game was centre Solomone Kata.

“He’s as Tongan as they come yet under the rules of some other sports if he played just once for New Zealand, he’d never be able to represent Tonga,” said Woolf.

“And that , to me, would just be wrong.”

Awabakal and Guringai native title claim from Maitland to Hornsby put on ice

14/09/2019

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‘Heartache’ after claim snuffed out RECOGNITION: The Awabakal and Guringai Aboriginal people had lodged a claim over an area stretching from Hornsby to Maitland.
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Queen Margaret of Lake Macquarie, who is one of the ancestors of the claim group.

The claim area.

TweetFacebookHeraldhe was “gutted” at the defeat.

“It’s been an absolute heartache going through the process,” Mr Frostsaid.

“All we ever wanted was to have recognition that our people, the Awabakal people, are the people of the area that we claimed.We never wanted to take anything away from anyone.

“If people knew that’s all it was, I don’t think they would be up in arms about it.”

Under legislationpassed in 1993, following Eddie Mabo’s historic courtvictory, Indigenous people granted native title often have the right to access and use land for a variety of purposes, including the right to hunt, fish, gather, camp, undertake ceremonies and use certain natural resources.

In a limited number ofcases, they can possess and occupy an area to the exclusion of all others.

Most people are unaffected by successful claims, however, because if land has already been granted by the state to another person, that person’s rights prevail.

Claim group member Kerrie Brauer was able to prove her ancestral links to Awabakal figures Queen Margaret and King Ned, of Lake Macquarie.

She said it was “very disappointing” that the claim had been withdrawn, but the state government’s recognition of the group’sancestral ties was a significant first step.

“It does give the chance for the younger generations to come up behind us if they want to continue the fight,” she said.“The state has indicated that they would like to continue talks outside the native title process.”

Shane Frost, Awabakal man

Ms Brauer said it was extremely difficult to prove that laws and customs had been upheld continuously over time when the very purpose of the early Aboriginal missions was to “disrupt that”.

“The Sydney and Newcastle areas were among the first to be colonised and you were told you can’t hunt, you can’t speak your language,” she said. “It’s a catch 22 scenario.”

Consisting only of direct descendants of the original Awabakal people, the claim group is separate and distinct from the Awabakal Aboriginal Local Land Council, based in Newcastle.

Members of the land council must also be Aboriginal but do not have to be a direct descendant of an Awabakal person.

The council also has a separate process for undertaking land claims.

“The materials that our ancestors have left, I have no greater say … over those sites than any other Aboriginal person,” said claim group member Peter Leven, who works in heritage.

“For me, it’s a personal connection to these items that I touch when I do my job …these are things that my direct ancestors have made.

“We actually said to the state, we’re not interested in the money or compensation …money isn’t going to fix what’s happened. Recognition will fix what’s happened.”

Mr Owens was originally a property lawyer but has devoted the last 20 years to assisting with native title claims, much of the time working pro bono.

He said it was “extraordinarily difficult” for Aboriginal peopleto meet the requirements of the Native Title Act in the areas that had been densely populated following white settlement.

“Numerous submissions have been made to various federal governments of both persuasions to soften or amend the provisions, because in some places, it’s nearly impossible to prove it,” he said. “They were exposed to the full blow torch of history.”

Mr Owens said that unlike in other states, NSW did not have any published standardsor criteria that had to be met for a native title claim to be successful.

“All we ever got from the state was that it didn’t meet the criteria,” he said. “They didn’t say how, what, why, when or where.

“With the Awabakal and Guringai people they were also denied access to federal government funding … they were completely and utterly by themselves. When they’re not receiving that funding, it’s very much David and Goliath.”​

Mr Frost said Aboriginal people were being encouraged to embark on claims with no idea how difficult, costly and lengthythe process would be.

“[It] chews you up and spits you out, in a way.”

Just got mail from your super fund? You should read it

14/09/2019

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It’s the time of the year when annual statements from super funds for the year to June 30, 2017, are sent out. It you haven’t yet received your statement you should be receiving it soon.
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This year, more than any other, it’s important for fund members to check their statements.

That’s because there have been significant changes for up to 1 million fund members who have been shifted to another type of default option that’s very different to the option they were in.

All employer super payments already have to be going to a fund that is MySuper-compliant. But mid-2017 was the deadline by which all accumulated savings had to be moved and most funds switched their members well before the deadline.

MySuper-compliance applies to the default investment options and ensures a set of consumer safeguards for those fund members, the vast majority, who don’t choose their super fund.

One of those safeguards sees a welcome end of what was a fees rip-off. This was where a fee was charged for financial advice, despite the fund member never receiving any advice.

For not-for-profit funds, such as industry funds, which have never paid advice commissions, their standard default investment options, with the odd exception, have remained as their MySuper-compliant default options.

For the vast majority of industry fund members who are in their funds’ default options, nothing has changed.

But most retail funds, such as those run by the banks and insurers, have made life-stage or life-cycle options, which are MySuper compliant, their default options.

Up to 1 million members of mostly retail super funds been switched to this new type of investment option.

Some fund members will be with the options on the recommendation of their financial planner, where presumably the benefits will have been explained to them.

Many others will have been shifted without them having to do anything. They will have been notified by their funds, but they probably didn’t give too much thought to it at the time.

Life-cycle options are very different to the standard balanced options, which have a fairly static asset allocations and whose returns are easily comparable to each other.

With life-cycle options, fund members are grouped into cohorts depending on birth decade. The asset allocation is set aggressively when the age cohort is young and then becomes progressively more conservative as the cohort ages.

As most of these life-cycle options are new, there is little track record and the changing asset allocation makes them difficult, if not impossible, to compare to each other and to the standard default offerings.

I am not saying that life-cycle options are necessary bad, though I am sceptical about whether they are going to leave fund members better off than the standard balanced investment options.

While past performance is no guarantee of future performance, the standard balanced options do have a good record of meeting their performance objectives.

Follow John Collett on Twitter.

Abbott allies go to ground, Labor lashes ‘loopy’ Lib following speech

14/09/2019

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Labor, the Greens and climate change activists have rounded on Tony Abbott for a “loopy” London speech in which the former prime minister suggested temperature rises caused by climate change could be beneficial because “far more people die in cold snaps”.
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Political allies and friends of the former leader went to ground on Tuesday following the incendiary speech to the sceptic Global Warming Policy Forum, which is the latest in a series of dramatic interventions from Mr Abbott into the energy debate, including a recent warning that he could cross the floor rather than vote for a clean energy target.

Former prime minister Tony Abbott Photo: Alex Ellinghausen

The Coalition has effectively signalled it will not adopt a clean energy target and an alternative policy proposal, designed to ensure greater reliability in ‘s electricity networks and force down prices, could go to cabinet and then the Coalition party room as soon as next week.

In his speech, Mr Abbott also suggested the science of climate change was not settled, that 100 years of photography at Manly beach, in his Warringah electorate in Sydney, suggested sea levels had not risen and that, “environmentalism has managed to combine a post-socialist instinct for big government with a post-Christian nostalgia for making sacrifices in a good cause”.

“Primitive people once killed goats to appease the volcano gods. We’re more sophisticated now but are still sacrificing our industries and our living standards to the climate gods to little more effect,” he said.

Ben Peiser, director of the Global Warming Policy Forum, said “there was nothing loopy in the speech whatsoever, it was very rational” and it was well-received by the 200-strong audience, which included ambassadors from central European countries and Japan, and a number of British MPs.

“I am not saying everything he said I agree with – but that’s the point,” he said.

The aim of the forum was to provide a “full spectrum of views” on climate and energy policy “and nowadays if you do that you are controversial,” he said, adding that he was glad the speech had generated a strong reaction because “that was the whole idea, I think”.

“Our aim is to offer people the ability to have a proper debate without all the noise and shouting”.

Mr Abbott had been invited to speak partly because “it’s unusual for a senior politician to speak frankly about these things,” Mr Peiser said. “They usually would say these things in private.”

The ABC’s London bureau chief Lisa Millar said on Twitter that her news team were “not allowed to hear [the] speech or report on it firsthand in London”, having been told it was a “non-media event” – despite parts of the speech being given to News Corp publications in advance. Guardian ‘s editor Bridie Jabour said on Twitter the Guardian was blocked from attending. Fairfax Media also sought attendance but Mr Abbott’s office said the speech was by invitation only and not open to the media.

Deputy Labor leader Tanya Plibersek said Mr Abbott had “left the realm of the merely destructive and entered the realm of the loopy. This is actually weird stuff – we know climate change is having an effect in as well. To be denying it in this way seems so bloody minded.”

Shadow treasurer Chris Bowen said the speech was an “extraordinary intervention” and that the former prime minister was “calling the policy shots” on the government’s move to walk away from the clean energy target.

Fairfax Media spoke to several Liberal MPs who count themselves as friends and conservative allies of Mr Abbott on Tuesday but none wished to speak on the record about the former prime minister’s intervention.

Those MPs welcomed the prospect of the government walking away from a clean energy target but dismissed suggestions that Mr Abbott had played a consequential role in arriving at this position.

Greens climate change spokesman Adam Bandt MP said the former Liberal leader was a “dangerous fool who could be simply ignored were it not for his ability to dictate Malcolm Turnbull’s climate policy”, while environmental groups such as the Climate Council said the speech was out of touch with reality.

Former British Labour leader Ed Miliband responded to the speech with a tweet that said: “I know Donald Trump has lowered the bar for idiocy but…..”

Mr Abbott has adopted a variety of positions on climate change in the past decade, including advocating a carbon tax and advocating a vote for Kevin Rudd’s emissions trading scheme back in 2009 – before he reversed course and took the leadership from Malcolm Turnbull in the process – campaigning against Julia Gillard’s emissions trading scheme, signing up to the Paris Climate agreement and then suggesting that the deal was aspirational only.

Mr Abbott’s political ally Craig Kelly dismissed suggestions the former leader was angling for a return to the leadership and that Mr Turnbull would lead the party to the next election during an interview on Sky News.

He added, however, that you could “never say never” about such an unlikely political come back.

The Global Warming Policy Forum has published the text of the speech online and plans to upload a video.

Why I finally admitted I was powerless over alcohol

14/09/2019

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Three years ago I had hit my personal rock bottom, and was at a point where I was ready to take my own life. And yet here I stand, today, blessed to be three years into a life fully-recovered, healthy, and completely free from any desire to even touch alcohol.
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There are countless women who think there is no hope left.

Shanna is now determined to help others. Photo: saltkreative成都夜场招聘

I feel mandated to be part of the message of hope that recovery and freedom can happen, and to help people see the truth of what alcoholism can look like – that it begins, for many of us, with a very unhealthy relationship with “wine o’clock”.

Many a work-day ended for me with a wine or two. Over time, for me, that “one harmless glass” of wine insidiously became one bottle, and then two.

For Shanna Whan, hitting rock bottom was the ‘best’ thing.

Suddenly – I was in my thirties – and I looked in the mirror to see that I was in the grip of a disease that nearly took my life.

The first thing people ask me is: “how did you get that way?”

It wasn’t like falling off a cliff and having a tragic accident. It wasn’t sudden. This thing took hold of my life when I was 18, and manifested over a period of more than twenty years. It began as a series of traumatic events and abusive relationships that happened when I was an extremely naïve young country girl.

I was simply not emotionally equipped to deal with what happened to me in that part of my life. But those things stole my youth and my hope and my future.

A few beers at a party helped me to find my courage socially as a young woman, because I was paranoid, ashamed, and scared. Alcohol was all around me in rural . In the country party scene where I grew up, it was the ‘done thing’ to binge at parties. It was a badge of honour to get as drunk as possible. This provided a terrific way for me to escape so much of what plagued me.

A pattern of alcohol entered my life. Over time, it remained with me as a way to either relax, get to sleep, shut down bad memories, or just to become the confident person people thought I was. I loved the freedom I thought alcohol was giving me.

I didn’t want to see the truth of the matter. That it was nothing but a façade that was taking over my life.

My twenties were basically a disaster.But somehow, in my thirties, I was fortunate enough to marry a truly wonderful man.

By my mid-thirties, I had begun trying (again and again) to get healthy and sort my life out. It was very apparent there was a problem with booze now. It proved to be almost impossible. But I still fought and struggled desperately with the concept that I was addicted. I could not, for the life of me, look the “A” word in the eye.

I didn’t drink every day. I didn’t drink DURING the day. I worked SO hard. I was successful. Surely I couldn’t be an alcoholic? If my husband or anyone suggested I was – I would become angry and offended.

When my husband and I tried and failed numerous times to start a family – and it became apparent we wouldn’t be able to – something inside of me broke. I was already broken – but the façade I had so carefully tried to maintain began to crumble.

The unfairness of this off the back of what had already been stolen from me as a young woman just undid me completely – and my drinking took on an entirely new level of destruction.

By my late thirties, I was frequently contemplating suicide. I felt like the worthlessness and fear and shame and grief had finally caught me. I was so trapped in self-pity and bitterness and grief that I couldn’t see hope anymore.

Hitting rock-bottom ended up being the greatest thing to ever happen to me.

Because one day, out of complete desperation – I tried one last time. One last thing. I picked up the phone, and I reached out to a recovery support person. For the first time in my life, I saw hope. I met somebody exactly like me. I stupidly had thought prior to this that I was the only person in my situation. Suddenly, everything changed.

This person educated me, and showed me the truth of what alcoholism looks like, acts like, and presents as. And it was nothing that I had imagined. I grabbed that small spark of hope, and I threw myself completely into the second chance I realised was there.

I stopped lying, pretending, and minimising the truth. I turned around for the first time and looked into the mirror and became 100 per cent honest for the first time in a long time. It’s a cliché for sure – but I admitted I was powerless over alcohol.

For the first time in my entire life, I said the “A” word.

I spoke the truth in front of my family, friends, and eventually everyone. I was an alcoholic.

And – again, it’s a cliché – but it was through the process of surrendering to the truth that I was able to become strong again. The fear I’d carried suddenly lost its power over me.

I worked harder than I had ever worked in my life. I did everything I could to follow the advice and suggestions from successfully recovered people that I could.

I believe that what happened to me then was a miracle. The desire for alcohol left me completely. I stopped thinking about it, wanting it, and needing it.

Three years later, I am completely recovered, healthy and well. It feels like I am finally being given the chance to live the life I was blessed with.

Given how heartbreakingly rare this is (most people fight the need for alcohol the rest of their lives) I made a decision, then and there, that I would use the freedom I had been given to help others.

What I now understand – especially in rural – is that the stigmas, judgement, and fearfulness surrounding this much-misunderstood hellish thing are rampant. We still live in a culture that embraces, celebrates, and revolves around booze. So, for anybody who’s headed for (or trapped in) an addictive or destructive cycle, seeking help becomes a seemingly mountainous impossibility.

I now try and help bridge that gap of understanding. Because people are dying from a preventable disease out here.

My entire aim is to help people understand that for those trapped in alcoholism, it has long progressed from a ‘choice’ to a full-blown addiction, and that the people trapped need to be educated and supported, not further condemned.

But it’s a complex and emotive topic, and I am the first to admit that when I was in the grip of alcoholism I was no longer myself. It is absolutely a monster that ruins people and families and lives.

But there is hope. And there is a way out.

Shanna is a guest on tonight’s episode ofInsightat 830pm on SBS, which explores why women over 40 are drinking more.

‘You end up behind a bar’: 22 graduates fighting for every job

14/09/2019

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Alicia Keir is in her final year of a teaching degree and expects that it will take about two years to find a full-time job once she graduates, but is worried it could take much longer.
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“I know people who go up to seven years without finding a permanent position,” said Ms Keir, 26, who is studying primary education at the University of Newcastle and lives in Sydney’s south-west.

“Each year, I’ve seen how many teaching graduates come through, it’s the luck of the draw whether a spot [in a school is] available.”

Across , about 22 university graduates are competing for every new graduate position and many will need to settle for low-paying entry roles “just to get their foot in the jobs market”, a new national report has found.

The competition for graduate jobs is the worst in South , with 46 recent university-leavers per new role, according to an analysis of nearly 140,000 job ads by market aggregator Adzuna.

This falls to 22 new graduates per role in Victoria and 20 graduates for every job in NSW. The Northern Territory has the least competition, with six new graduates per role.

Nationally, 130,105 people who recently left university with bachelor degrees are competing for 5783 advertised graduate positions, the report found, based on an analysis of the Department of Education’s university completion data and recent job advertisements.

Adzuna’s chief executive Raife Watson said that more than a third of advertised graduate jobs are in Sydney, but the chances of getting a role increase significantly outside major cities.

“Don’t be the 20 graduates applying for a job in Sydney, be the two people applying in Gunnedah,” Mr Watson said. “That’s the trick, be flexible in location.”

Ms Keir said she is passionate about teaching and working with children, but will start thinking about a career change if it takes too long to find a full-time job.

“I’d potentially go and study again, either further my education and maybe go into high school teaching or, in seven years, I might want to go into a completely differently industry,” Ms Keir said.

Mr Watson said that some fields, such as law and teaching, are much harder to find work in than others.

“It’s cheap for universities to churn out courses in certain areas, especially degrees outside the sciences with [fewer] contact hours and teachers,” Mr Watson said.

“With deregulation, there are more places and scores drop, but there just aren’t the jobs at the end of it, so you have a huge number of graduates who aren’t needed.

“You end up behind a bar or in some other job that’s unrelated to what you studied. You see a lot of law graduates going into sales or call centres.”

More than 7500 n students graduated with law degrees in 2015 but there are about 84 graduate law positions advertised nationally on Adzuna, which captures about 80 per cent of the overall job market.

This equates to about 90 new law graduates per available graduate position.

At the other end of the spectrum, there are nearly 700 graduate engineer positions being advertised and about 6000 students graduated with an engineering degree in 2015, equating to nearly nine graduates per role.

Mr Watson said more needs to be done by governments and businesses to address the gap between what people are studying and where jobs are available.

“We need to think about what’s really needed in education, the courses that we really need in the country,” he said.

“Why aren’t we pushing more people into [science, technology, maths and engineering] degrees?”