Same-sex couples head over the ditch for vows

29/06/2018 // by admin

United: Tony Briffa and Manja Sommeling.Hundreds of Australian same-sex-couples have married in New Zealand since marriage equality laws came into effect a year ago.
Nanjing Night Net

In the first 12 months, 926 same-sex couples have tied the knot in New Zealand, according to the New Zealand registry of marriages. Of those, 237 weddings – nearly one in four – involved Australian residents.

As New Zealand commemorated the first anniversary of its marriage equality laws last week, a Senate inquiry heard how thousands of same-sex couples have married overseas but still lack recognition under federal law.

Ten years ago, the Howard government amended the Marriage Act to prohibit same-sex marriages overseas being recognised in Australia. According to the most recent census, 1338 same-sex couples have married overseas.

Australians for Marriage Equality director Rodney Croome said many Australians would prefer to marry at home but could not wait any longer. ”It’s an indictment on Australia that our citizens have to travel to another country to be treated with dignity and respect,” he said.

Former Hobsons Bay mayor Tony Briffa will celebrate her first wedding anniversary with school teacher Manja Sommeling, 47, next month but her marriage remains in legal limbo.

”I proposed on Valentine’s Day last year,” she said. ”I got down on one knee in front of the house we had just bought and in which we now live.”

While the Altona Meadows couple had planned to marry in Canada, when New Zealand passed its marriage equality laws they opted for Dunedin instead. Being born both male and female, Ms Briffa’s marriage cannot be recognised under Australian law. The 44-year-old told the inquiry the proposed bill to recognise overseas same-sex marriages still excluded intersex people. Ms Briffa suggested the definition of marriage should remove all mention of gender.

Carnegie couple Michael Barnett, 45, and his husband Gregory Storer, 51, had been together for five years when they tied the knot in New Zealand’s Queenstown. Mr Barnett said friends and family treated the couple as married – regardless of the Australian law.

The Australian Family Association said recognising overseas same-sex marriages would create an inconsistency in the Marriage Act, and would add pressure to recognise same-sex marriage broadly.

The inquiry into formal recognition of overseas marriages is expected to report to the Federal Parliament on September 3.

This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.

need2know: Iron ore in sharp fall

29/06/2018 // by admin

With a weak lead from Wall Street, local investors will be awaiting fresh corporate results before seeking to drive Australian shares still higher.
Nanjing Night Net

What you need2know:

• SPI futures slid 10 points to 5599

• AUD at 92.97 US cents, 96.93 Japanese yen, 70.41 Euro cents and 56.15 British pence

• On Wall St, S&P 500 -0.2%, Dow -0.2%, Nasdaq +0.1%

• In Europe, Euro Stoxx 50 -0.8%, FTSE -0.04%, CAC -0.9%, DAX -0.7%

• Iron tumbles 2% to $US90.10 per metric tonne

• Spot gold up 0.3% to $US1280.08 an ounce

• Brent oil down 0.3% at $US102.29 per barrel.

What’s on today

Earnings from BlueScope Steel, Caltex Australia, McMillan Shakespeare, M2, NIB Holdings, Orora, PFL, Recall Holdings, Australia CBA/HIA house affordability; US new home sales.

Stocks to watch

Earnings today from: BlueScope Steel, Caltex Australia, McMillan Shakespeare, M2, NIB Holdings, Orora, PFL, Recall Holdings.

Shaw Stockbroking has a “buy” recommendation on Mermaid Marine, which it rates as “high risk” with a price target of $3.20 a share.

Morningstar has a “hold” recommendation on Trade Me following the release of its full year results for the financial year ended June 30, 2014, and expects the share price to reach a fair value of $3.60.

Macquarie Research has a positive take on Village Roadshow saying the stock will “outperform” in the next 12 months. It says VRL is an attractive investment opportunity and has a 12 month price target of $8.50.


Federal Reserve chair Janet Yellen called for a “pragmatic” approach to US monetary policy on Friday, amid calls by hawkish members of the central bank’s policy committee for a quick rise in interest rates due to tightening labour markets and inflationary risks.

Five months after the US Mint began producing coins made with platinum, sales have all but collapsed as investors continue to favour gold and silver. “It’s not considered a currency,” said Jason Carstensen, a medical-sales representative in Ventura, California, who spends about $US2000 a month on coins, according to Bloomberg.


Nickel fell 0.4 per cent to finish at $US18,750 per tonne after data showed excess supplies on the market. The global nickel market had a 1800 tonne surplus in June in contrast to a 3300 tonne deficit the month earlier.

Baoshan Iron & Steel Co Ltd (Baosteel), China’s biggest listed steelmaker by stock market value, posted a 14.8 per cent fall in first-half net profit, reflecting weak prices and slackening demand growth, the company said on Friday.

Gold prices edged up on Friday as US equities slipped, but gains were limited. “I see no reasons to own gold, which is likely to trend lower with rallies being sold. The Treasury yields at under 3 per cent and crude oil prices showing signs of a recession are significant headwinds for precious metals,” said Jonathan Jossen, COMEX gold options floor trader in New York.

United States

Despite losses on Friday, all three major indexes posted gains for the week, with the Dow up 2 per cent, the S&P up 1.7 per cent and the Nasdaq up 1.6 per cent. It was the strongest week of gains for both the Dow and the S&P since April, and the third straight week of gains for all three indexes.

Goldman Sachs Group will pay $US3.15 billion to settle claims from the US housing finance regulator that it sold bad mortgage-backed securities. Goldman said it would repurchase the securities sold to Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac over the 2005-2007 period.

Optimism about near-term market direction hit a nine-month high in the latest AAII Sentiment Survey, with 46.1 per cent of respondents expecting gains over the next six month. “There’s a good underlying tone in the market and we still have plenty of prospects for more gains,” said Michael Mullaney, chief investment officer at Fiduciary Trust Co in Boston. He added that he would not be concerned about valuation until the S&P’s forward price-to-earnings ratio was 17 and its trailing P/E was 20. Those metrics currently stand at 15.7 and 17.4, respectively.


European shares fell on Friday after a brisk two-week rally, hurt by a ratcheting-up of tensions in Ukraine, although traders said Yellen’s dovish tone limited losses. “European indexes are halted by big resistance levels. At this point, investors should think about hedging their portfolios,” Aurel BGC chartist Gerard Sagnier said.

German venture capital firm Rocket Internet and Zalando, Europe’s biggest specialist online fashion retailer, are both on the brink of announcing plans to list on the Frankfurt stock exchange, several sources with knowledge of the matter said.

Royal Bank of Scotland might split its international private bank into separate European and Asian divisions to attract Asian buyers who have the financial muscle for a deal but are reluctant to take on European client risk.

What happened on Friday

The local sharemarket added 0.1 per cent. Oil and gas producer Santos was a highlight, adding 3.9 per cent to $15.16 on Friday after announ­cing a bumper dividend. The stock rose 5.3 per cent over the week.

Energy was the best-performing sector over the week, up 3.6 per cent. Origin Energy lifted 5.6 per cent to $14.84 despite showing a weak full-year profit on Thursday as the company shared a more optimistic outlook for this year.

This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.

Melbourne Express: August 25, 2014

29/06/2018 // by admin

fire icon for Melbourne Express
Nanjing Night Net

Fire fighters battle the blaze at Donovans restaurant. Photo: Fergus Wells

Melbourne Express icon

Good morning and welcome to Melbourne Express, our live blog from 6am-9am weekdays. Please send comments, corrections, updates and photos to [email protected]南京夜网.au or @Angus_Holland or #melbourneexpress.

Good morning – we’re back live with Melbourne Express for another week. Check back here for regular traffic updates, breaking news and what’s happening around town today. If you have a news tip or commuter alert, please email Angus at [email protected]南京夜网.au – cheers.

Overnight, Donovan’s restaurant on the St Kilda foreshore was badly damaged by fire. 50 diners had to be evacuated. 

Minor delays reported on the Pakenham line this morning between Pakenham and Dandenong after a track equipment fault that has now been fixed.

This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.

MORNING RUSH: news, sport, weather, traffic and online buzz

29/06/2018 // by admin

Don’t forget to refresh the page for updates. Got a traffic tip or some news? Email [email protected]南京夜网.au
Nanjing Night Net

8.30amThat’s it from us this morning. Have a fabulous Thursday. See you tomorrow for the TGIF edition of the Rush.

8.12amCheck out Charlie, the new Australian sea lion at Taronga Zoo!

Post by aus.

8.08amManagers at the Australian Taxation Office trying to use scratchies to fight sickies among their public servants this Christmas have hit a snag.A workplace trade union has put the boot into the scheme, which rewards good attendance with a chance to win scratch cards, arguing the plan discriminates against tax officials who don’t show up to work.

8.06amHave you been snapped out & about in the Illawarra? Check out our gallery of social pics here.

8.04am HSC:Nearly a third of NSW HSC students are set to receive an ATAR of 80 or more. That’s impressive!

8.02am STRANGE BUT TRUE:No words needed really.

Post by fish.

8amThis time next week it will be Christmas Day. That is distressing.

7.58amGood morning!We’re in for a cloudy day with a top of 24 degrees. There is a medium chance of showers & a thunderstorm this afternoon. All good on the roads & rail.

7.56am LOCAL NEWS:The “I’ll Ride With You” movement took over social media this week, a show of solidarity for Muslims who feared retribution in the wake of the Sydney siege.A team of water safety educators hopes its “I’ll Surf With You” tagline picks up as much steam. NB great pic from snapper Sylvia Liber too!

*Reporter Josh Butler has the story.

7.54am STRANGE BUT TRUE (YES!):People, I bring you wine-infused ice-cream. If you need me, I’ll be in the corner eating three pints of this stuff.

7.52am CELEB GOSS ALERT:We’re on baby bump watch here on the Rush and … yep, we can definitely see Jessica Biel’s bump.

Post by jess.

7.50am SPORT:Western Sydney’s frustrating Club World Cup campaign has ended with a loss on penalties to African champions ES Setif of Algeria in the playoff for fifth place.

7.48amOn dessert duty for Christmas? Try this white chocolate parfait.

7.46am SYDNEY SIEGE: PMTony Abbott has suggested that firearm laws may need to change as he said that the Martin Place gunman had a gun licence despite having a long criminal history that included being out on bail for being an accessory to murder. (SMH)

7.44amSally Fitzgibbons is in town today signing copies of her new book. She’ll be at Dymocks Wollongong from 11am.

Super excited for today’s #LiveLikeSally signs!Drop in&say Hi #Dymocks Wollongong 11am &SDS Warringah Mall at 5pm : ) pic.twitter南京夜网/2ODJrMXZUk

— Sally Fitzgibbons (@Sally_Fitz) December 17, 2014Post by kim.

7.36am LOCAL SPORT:TheHawks’ 3-12 start to the season may have tested the resolve of fans, but the faith of 11-year-old Caleb Jordan has never wavered. A lovely story from reporter Mitch Jennings here.

7.34amLooking for somewhere to holiday in 2015? Look beyond Phuket and check out these other amazing Thai islands.

7.32am SYDNEY SIEGE:Tributes have continued to pour into Martin Place for the victims of Monday’s siege.

Post by martin.

7.30amHave you entered your house in the Mercury’s Christmas lights competition? Get in quick – entries close Monday. Register here.

7.28am WORLD NEWS:The LA Police Department is buying 7000 body-worn cameras for its officers, Mayor Eric Garcetti announced this week. The decision is not directly related to the protests in Ferguson or NYC in the past several weeks, as the department has been testing the cameras for months. (SMH)

7.26amKeen to cook up your own bread this Christmas day? Check out this recipe for rosemary olive oil bread. Yum.

Post by bread.

7.24amWant to congratulate your child/mate/neighbour on their ATAR results? Leave them a message here.

7.22am LOCAL NEWS:The late Wollongong District Court judge Joe Phelan will be remembered as a brilliant legal mind and a compassionate man with a strong sense of justice.

*Reporter Louise Turk has the story.

7.20amPrince George, you have stolen my heart – look at him having a GREAT time with mum at the Winter Wonderland fair in London. #socute

Post by prince.

7.18am CELEB NEWS:R&B singer Ashanti hashad to take the witness stand in court, forced toanswer questions from a delusional fan who had already been convicted, in 2009, of stalking her. Read more.

7.16am NSW:More than 5300 NSW homes may be riddled with deadly Mr Fluffy asbestos insulation and the state government should demolish and buy affected properties, a parliamentary report has found.

7.14amDon’t forget the annual Gerringong street parade is on this Saturday.

7.12am TIARA ALERT:Kate Middleton wore her TRACKIES to a publicity event in the UK. I repeat, her TRACKIES. THIS IS NOT A DRILL. TRACKIES.

Post by kate.

7.10am SYDNEY SIEGE:NSW Police were right to try to negotiate with the gunman, according to a former senior police officer familiar with counter terrorism training.”There is a very strong history that negotiations work and time does solve problems,” said the former officer, who asked not to be named.

7.08am LOCAL NEWS:Vocalist Isabella Hanley truly had something to sing about yesterday, when she found out she was 10th in the state in her Higher School Certificate music course.

*Reporter Kate McIlwain has the story.

7.06amA little Christmas joke for you.

Post by joke.

7.04am SYDNEY:A man wearing a gas mask and shouting threats has been arrested on board a train heading into Sydney.The 44 year-old boarded the train at Newcastle and began yelling shortly before arriving at Central station.

7.02am CELEB NEWS:ComedianRussell Brand has criticised the mainstream media and Prime Minister Tony Abbott for referring to Sydney’s Lindt cafe siege as an act of terrorism. Read more.

7am STRANGE BUT TRUE:This man spent more than $150,000 to look like Kim Kardashian. I kid you not.

Post by kim.

6.58am Good morning!We’re in for a cloudy day with a top of 24 degrees. There is a medium chance of showers & a thunderstorm this afternoon. All good on the roads & rail.

6.56am LOCAL NEWS:Two long-serving Balarang Public School teachers were treated to a truck ride to mark their retirements on Wednesday.

*Get the full story here.

6.54amWant to keep the calories down this festive season? Try these easyfood swaps – goodbye potato chips, hello vegetables!

6.52am WORLD NEWS:A shocked Pakistan yesterday began burying 132 students killed in anattack on their school by seven Taliban militants.

6.50amHeading out tonight to check out the Illawarra’s best Christmas lights? Take this handy guide with you – we’ve got them all wrapped up for you.

6.48am CELEB GOSS ALERT:Things are not looking good for Spice Girl Mel B. Reports are swirling that she’s splitting with her husband & moving out of their LA home.

Post by mel b.

6.46amIf you haven’t seen this yet, WATCH IT NOW. Quite possibly the DUMBEST response to a first question on Millionaire Hotseat EVER.

Post by millionaire.

6.44am HEALTH:Health professionals need to focus on family needs, listening and respect when dealing with end-of-life planning for patients, according to research which has revealed a gap in what health professionals and patients believe is important. Read more.

6.42amCan you believe it’s just a week until Christmas!? #notready

6.40am MUSIC NEWS:Soundwave promoter AJ Maddah has pulled off a major surprise by announcing one of the biggest names in 90s indie rock, BIlly Corgan vehicle Smashing Pumpkins, to join his touring heavy rock and punk festival in early 2015.

6.38am LOCAL NEWS:Christians and Muslimsprayed together on Wednesday, as part of a special interfaith mass in memory of the victims of the Sydney siege.

*Reporter Josh Butler has the story.

6.36am TV NEWS:Jimmy Fallon & Justin Timberlake have taken it back to the ’90s for a skit on Fallon’s show – they stayed up late at “summer camp” to sing Third Eye Blind.Nice!

Post by fallon.

6.34am NATIONAL:2014 has now been declared the “deadliest year” for migrants, with a record 4868 people dying while trying to cross treacherous oceans in 2014 – double the 2013 tally. Read more.

6.32amHave you voted for your Illawarra Sportsperson of the Year? Get in quick – register your votehere.

6.30amQuark. Freekeh. Buckwheat. No, I’m not speaking a different language – these are the foods we’ll be eating in 2015, according to the SMH.

6.28amCheck out Beyonce’s latest picture with daughter Blue Ivy. Cute!

Beyoncé’s latest pic with Blue Ivy is TOO CUTE: http://t.co/7KL9H996KNpic.twitter南京夜网/NC27GZyqLI

— E! News (@ENews) December 17, 2014The Interview. It’s New York premiere has been cancelled as theatres across the US start dropping the movie, amid fears of terrorist attacks.

Post by int.

6.24am NSW:Former NRL player Craig Field has been sentenced to at least seven and a half years’ jail for the one-punch killing of a farmer at a pub in 2012.

6.22amDon’t forget the Sunset Cinema kicks off at the Wollongong Botanic Gardens on Boxing Day. Have you got your tickets!?

6.20am CELEB GOSS ALERT:Selena Gomez was spotted crying over Justin Bieber at Taylor Swift’s 25th birthday party. Oh dear. NB that was a LOT of celeb name-dropping in one sentence.

Post by selena.

6.18am TV NEWS:HBO appears to be borrowing from the book of Snapchat for its latestGame of Thronesteaser campaign, deleting a tantalising vision of season five released to fans after just one viewing. But of course, someone’s figured out a way around it!Check it out.

6.16am LOCAL NEWS:AnIllawarra teen who got his four-year-old niece to perform a sexual act on him under the pretence they were playing a game has avoided a full-time jail sentence.

*Court reporter Shannon Tonkin has the details.

6.14amEver seen a baby beaver? Now you have – awwww.

Post by beaver.

6.12amYear 12 students received their HSC marks yesterday. Hope it was good news. It’s ATARs today – good luck.

6.10am WORLD NEWS:USPresident Barack Obama has opened the door to restoring full diplomatic relations with Cuba after 50 years of sanctions and embargo, announcing that the US would seek to open an embassy in the coming months and to relax economic and travel restrictions.

6.08am CELEB NEWS:7th Heaven star Stephen Collins has admitted in an interview overnight that he sexually abused three underage girls. “I did something terribly wrong”, he said.

Post by 7th.

6.06am And in national news, via the SMH:

*In the early hours of Tuesday morning, Sydney siege gunman Man Haron Monis was wide awake and agitated, the father of one hostage says.Joel Herat, 21, has told his family Monis was starting to herd the frightened hostages into separate groups inside the Lindt cafe, raising fears they would “not survive until the morning if they did not do something”. Read more.

*Prime Minister Tony Abbott has ordered an urgent inquiry into the deadly Martin Place siege as authorities faced fierce scrutiny over why the gunman was free despite the raft of serious criminal charges against him.

*ABC journalists were in tears on Wednesdayafter being told their positions could become redundant.Close to a third of more than 300 ABC staff in pools with similarly skilled colleagues were expected to learn their fate by 5pm.

6.04am Here’s what’s making news in your Mercury today:

*Anintellectually impaired resident gorged on a jar of hazelnut chocolate spread and choked to death at an Illawarra group home – just 18 months after a similar death at another home. Read more.

*There was a distinct lack of Christmas cheer at Shellharbour City Council’s final meeting of the year, which began with independent councillor Peter Moran being unceremoniously dumped as the council’s representative on the Killalea State Park Trust Board.

*Matthew Paul Wiggins, the man accused of gunning down Darko Janceski in 2012, has been committed to stand trial for murder.

6.02amLet’s kick things off with the latest weather & traffic.

WEATHERWe’re in for a cloudy day with a top of 24 degrees. There is a medium chance of showers & a thunderstorm this afternoon.

TRAFFICAll good on our roads & for the drive to Sydney.

TRAINSThere is a good service on the South Coast line.

6amGood morning Illawarra! Hope you’re having a good week – we’re on the steady slide into the weekend! Stay with me this morning for all the latest news etc.

This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.

Friday, August 29

29/06/2018 // by admin

Light Touch: Frisky Business.FREE TO AIR
Nanjing Night Net

The British, SBS One, 7.30pm

As someone who has studied English medieval and renaissance history, I was excited to review this series on the past 2000 years of British history. That excitement died once I started watching.This episode explores the terrifying and revolutionary Tudor era, followed by the bloody Stuart monarchs, whose incompetent rulers led England to civil war.Various British celebrities add their two cents, including Helen Mirren and Ben Kingsley, which distracts rather than adds to what’s going on.The 16th and 17th centuries are among the most  drama-filled periods in history – religious reformation, the birth of the printing press, Shakespeare and civil war – and yet this series has  managed  to make them seem boring.  If Queen Mary I was watching, she’d surely have the producers burnt at the stake.

Frisky Business, SBS2, 9.20pm 

Anything with the word ‘‘frisky’’ in the title has my attention and this documentary on one of the world’s largest sex toy businesses certainly doesn’t disappoint.Cameras follow the ins and outs of Lovehoney, the Bath business that receives more than 3000 orders daily from across the world for items that excite, titillate and, er, stretch the imagination.Devoid of smut, this informative series shines a light on humanity’s most basic desire in a  non-judgmental way. Lovehoney’s staff are as amused as viewers as to what they do for a living, with the returns department particularly delightful when they read aloud customers’ reasons for returning (sometimes used) products. The narration is perfectly British, voicing the equivalent of having a poker face. Her tone is that as if she’s talking about a stapler, especially when every fourth word is about phallus-shaped items.

The Project, Ten, 6.30pm

There are two types of people in Australia: those that enjoy The Project’s cheeky take on news and entertainment and those that think it’s putrid drivel. I belong in the first camp and why not? The mixture of news, entertainment and water-cooler topics is a good alternative to the ‘‘straight’’ news. The rotating call of hosts works, with Waleed Aly a standout.Co-host Carrie Bickmore   possesses the rare combination of being professional and having a wicked wit.  In a TV landscape  lacking a variety or late night show, this  offering helps fill the gaps.

Alana Schetzer


Entrapment (1999), Gem, 8.45pm

Ever since the appearances of A. J. Raffles (1898), Arsene Lupin (1905) and Fantomas (1911), thieves have been tremendously popular heroes of mass culture. Detectives may solve the crimes and generate most of the attention, but there is an undeniably delicious thrill in reading about someone getting away with theloot. For a long time, however, criminals were not allowed to be celebrated in cinema, censors and other moral guardians insisting that they be brought to justice and punished before the end credits.In Entrapment, Sean Connery plays Robert MacDougall, the world’s most charming Scottish crook (as opposed to its most famous secret agent). He lives in an idyllic castle beside an idyllic loch, surrounded by the most precious of objects, but with no romantic companion. This may be the Achilles heel that thief Virginia Baker (Catherine Zeta-Jones) can exploit to get close to him.Entrapment is renowned for two sequences. One is where Virginia practises her craft in a black catsuit, which is widely considered to be greatly erotic, but is spoiled for some by an ill-fitting garment that rucks in most unsightly ways. The other is a robbery at the Petronas Towers in Kuala Lumpur, which can be a tough ask of viewers suffering from vertigo, despite the overuse of CGI.Directed at a brisk pace by Jon Amiel, with charismatic stars who work beautifully together, this is an inconsequential but fun heistmovie.

House of Pleasures (2011), SBS One, 11pm

Paying for sex may soon be illegal in France (the Senate is still deciding), but a fascination with prostitution as drama on television (Maison Close) and the big screen (Bertrand Bonello’s House of Pleasures) continues unabated. The latter is, at first glance, a pretty and nostalgic trip back to an early-20th-century brothel in Paris. But dark themes emerge, and the issue of whether women should be free to ply this most ancient of trades is left unresolved.

Scott Murray

This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.

Saturday, August 30

29/06/2018 // by admin

Reeled in: I Fish.FREE TO AIR
Nanjing Night Net

FIBA Men’s Basketball World Cup, ABC2 1.25am, ABC 5.25am (Sunday)

If you’re a fan of the more marginal sports, the ABC is doing its best to keep you happy. There’s VFL on the weekend. You can generally catch a bit of lawn bowls. They did a great job  covering the men’s and women’s hockey world champs. Now they’ve picked up this obscure beauty: the FIBA World Cup. If you’re wondering, FIBA stands for International Basketball Federation  and our national broadcaster is going all-out to provide some entertaining and professional coverage. Stephanie Brantz leads the broadcast team; Andrew Gaze, Phil Smyth and Brett Maher are also on board; Shane Heal and John Casey will be calling the games from Spain; and there’s the obligatory comic wrap of the day in Double Dribble, nightly at 8.20pm. Tonight the Boomers meet Slovenia (on ABC2) while the USA take on Finland(ABC).

I Fish, Ten, 3pm

No one’s quite sure when fishing moved from a way of finding food to a recreational pursuit but these days casting a line is the preferred pastime of millions all over the developed world. Unsurprisingly, television is right there beside us, churning out dozens of programs dedicated to the drowsiest of sports from the gonzo antics of River Monsters to more humble offerings like this one. The title says it all. Paul Worsteling fishes. And we watch, as he catches – or fails to catch – assorted domestic varieties, advises us on bait, tackle and tactics, throws in  numerous plugs for his sponsors, all with the air of a man content with his life and his lot. Like fishing itself, it’s a peaceful half hour with occasional spikes of interest.

Gardening Australia, ABC, 6.30pm

Having recently celebrated its 25th anniversary, this hands-on gardening show chugs along placidly: refreshed by a broader brief and a new host, but still delivering its trademark combo of sensible advice and inspiring stories. Tonight, Jerry does double duty, providing  timely tips on caring for citrus and also visiting a cacti maven for advice on growing succulents in pots. Down at the patch in Tassie, Tino is getting some root vegies in for spring. Sophie explores South Australian natives that succour wildlife without needing a lot of attention. And Costa does his favourite thing: finds a fabulous community garden in the heart of Sydney.

Melinda Houston


An Education (2009), SBS One, 8.30pm

An Education is an admirable but ultimately unpersuasive film about a 16-year-old schoolgirl, Jenny Mellor (Carey Mulligan), who has an affair with a much older and rather sleazy man (Peter Sarsgaard). It ends, as many ‘‘feminist’’ films do (Campion’s, Armstrong’s), with a woman striding – or bicycling – towards a rosy authorial future. And while the last line unfortunately celebrates lying to boyfriends, thatshould be put down to over-enthusiasm.Set in early-1960s England, the film does a fine job with the period, which is perhaps not unexpected in that director Lone Scherfig is Danish. Foreign directors often capture a location and a culture better than locals do. (Walkabout and Wake in Fright, both foreign-directed Australian films from 1971, are notable examples.) If the universally admired An Education has an issue, it is Carey Mulligan, a sometimes overly intense actress with the gift of appearing miscast (most unfortunately as Daisy Buchanan in The Great Gatsby). Mulligan is not helped here by being seven years too old for her part. She even evokes memories of Joan Fontaine in Letter from an Unknown Woman, where the 31-year-old actress gawkily attempts to play a schoolgirl. Mulligan is slightly less unconvincing, but, like Fontaine,  falsely ascribes adult emotions and sexuality to a still-maturing child. Fashion magazines are regularly taken to task for inappropriately sexualising children, but casting adults as teenagers in movies is equally to blame. Still, An Education is an engaging, if bleak, look at a time when men had greater licence to be bad, and women were more forcefully imagining their future rights and freedoms.

Taking Woodstock (2009), Seven, 12.30am (Sunday)

The Woodstock Music & Art Fair was a defining moment in time. For three days on a 240-hectare farm on the outskirts of White Lake, New York, half-a-million people revelled in a festival of music, free love and torrential rain. Ang Lee’s Taking Woodstock takes a wry look at the many back-paddock machinations.

Scott Murray

This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.

Sunday, August 31

29/06/2018 // by admin

Love in wartime: Anzac Girls.FREE TO AIR
Nanjing Night Net

The Block Glasshouse, Nine, 6.30pm

Imagine how (much more?) dull The Block would be if everything ran smoothly – if tradies turned up on time, everyone got eight hours’ sleep a night and if the colour of their bathroom grouting wasn’t a crucial factor in scoring points and cash.  Tonight we’re  halfway through this series, in which the five teams are transforming a former office block into  apartments. It’s the big reveal for the teams’ staircases and powder room/laundry combinations, and tensions are mounting, tears flowing and barely anything is going to plan.  Chris and Jenna are seriously behind schedule and manage to elicit possibly the bitchiest comments yet from judges Darren Palmer, Shaynna Blaze and Neale Whittaker. Host Scott Cam  also announces a new challenge for the teams tonight, involving the Block pop-up shop, which nobody is going to like.

Anzac Girls, ABC, 8.30pm

It’s now 1916 and our nurses  have been seconded to a makeshift British hospital in Rouen, France, where they encounter a cool welcome from their British counterparts, who  chastise them for lining up tea cups with their handles akimbo. Alice (Georgia Flood) is pining for Harry (Dustin Clare), while Olive (Anna McGahan, arguably the best actress here), finds herself attracted to Dooley (Brandon  McClelland), despite her insistence that a war zone is no place for love. In seeking to bring history to life through the personal stories of the nurses – we don’t, of course, see battle scenes – Anzac Girls strays a little too far into soapie melodrama territory.

Castle, Seven, 9.45pm

A rare episode where Castle (Nathan Fillion) is not an implausibly integral part of the police action. Kate (Stana Katic) is called in, told specifically to leave Castle at home, and asked to go undercover posing as a woman who has been working with a high-level drug ring (Kate happens to look like her and speak fluent Russian, a requirement of the gig). The woman she’s posing as has turned police informant and was poised to meet the drug ring’s boss before attempting suicide. The gig sounds straightforward enough but quickly goes awry when Kate is kidnapped and must ditch her wire.  Kate finds herself face-to-face with a powerful enemy from her past. It’s a tense episode with both Castle and the show’s usual humour taking a back seat.

Kylie Northover


Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End (2007), 7Mate, 7.30pm

In this third episode of Gore Verbinski’s exhausting pirate trilogy, the creative juices have rundry, but Geoffrey Rush is insplendid form and Tom Hollander’s Lord Beckett is adelight.

Return Home (1990), ABC 1, 12.55am (Monday)

When Thomas Wolfe wrote You Can’t Go Home Again, the title became the catch-cry for all those anxious about returning to a familial place, fearful that they will find nothing as they remembered it– or, far worse, exactly as they remembered. The journeying-back story has not gripped Australian culture as powerfully as it has others. We prefer to talk about people going off to explore some exotic new place, often never to return, from Gallipoli and Burke and Wills to Wolf Creek. A glorious exception is writer-director Ray Argall’s Return Home, where Noel (Dennis Coard), a successful insurance broker, travels from Melbourne to his home town of Adelaide. There, his brother, Steve (Frankie J. Holden), runs a service station in an area of constant change, commercial aspirations born in America overtaking the fading suburbs where Aussie values once proudly ruled. It is a bittersweet journey for Noel, who must confront the things that drove him away and also embrace what has always remained true. Return Home is a film of great purity of feeling, a subtle masterpiece from a director who, if Australia were kind to its filmmakers, which it rarely is, should have made 10 features by now. But let’s not complain about missed opportunities and instead celebrate the fact that Return Home exists at all. Heck, it even bears comparison with Sydney Pollack’s Bobby Deerfield, where you know Bobby (Al Pacino) has made a life-changing decision when he first acknowledges the existence of family.  Near the end of Return Home, Noel looks at a photo of his childhood in his Melbourne office and you know a similarly bold stand will be taken. Maybe you can go home again after all.

Scott Murray

This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.

Californians fear ‘The Big One’ in aftermath of 6.0 earthquake

29/06/2018 // by admin

Nina Quidit cleans up the Dollar Plus and Party Supplies Store in American Canyon, California after Sunday’s earthquake. Photo: Alex Washburn Bricks and fallen rubble cover a car following Sunday’s earthquake in California. Photo: Eric Risberg
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The clean-up operation gets under way in Napa. Photo: Justin Sullivan

California: As alarm clocks go, it is one of the cruellest that Mother Nature holds in her arsenal: the residents of San Francisco and northern California’s Napa Valley were jolted awake at 3.20am, local time, by an earthquake with a magnitude of 6.0.

The quake has left almost 100 people injured, caused about 50 gas main breaks and 30 water main leaks and left roughly 42,000 homes without power. There have been no reports of fatalities.

The quake is significant, as both the largest to hit northern California since 1989, and a major seismic event in a tranche of American geography which is, by all accounts, long overdue for “The Big One”.

More than 10 aftershocks struck the city within an hour.

Memories of the 1989 earthquake are particularly resonant for San Francisco residents; that quake killed 63 people and injured almost 4000. It also collapsed a section of the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge.

Napa’s fire department said yesterday morning’s quake caused six significant fires.

A number of freeways and overpasses were closed as a precaution, but they slowly reopened.

The epicentre – the point on the surface directly above the earthquake – was about nine kilometres south-west of Napa, California’s iconic wine region.

The hypocentre – the actual location of the earthquake itself – was located about 10.8 kilometres underground.

“A quake of that size in a populated area is, of course, widely felt throughout that region,” a spokesman for the US Geological Survey (USGS) said. “The 6.0 is a sizeable quake for this area. It’s a shallow quake.”

However, it is not the event itself that most disturbs people, but the uncertainty that follows.

The USGS says the area will be peppered with “aftershocks” for at least the next week.

Aftershocks are typically weaker – the aftershocks striking the affected area are presently about the two-to-three magnitude range – but some aftershocks can match the original quake for magnitude and impact.

The USGS said aftershocks could reach as high as 5.0.

The earthquake magnitude scale – also known as the Richter scale – assigns a score of between 1 and 10 to a seismic event; however each full digit increase represents a tenfold increase on the measurable impact of the preceding value.

So, in the case of the Napa quake, a 6.0 magnitude quake is 10 times more impactful than a 5.0 quake, and a 7.0 quake would be 10 times greater again.

According to the USGS, the earthquake occurred within 70 kilometres of a group of major faults in the San Andreas fault system.

That fault – perhaps the most famous in the world – forms the boundary between the Pacific and North American tectonic plates. It runs roughly 1300 kilometres through California, and is split into three segments: the northern, central and southern faults.

Since 2010, four quakes measuring greater than 6.0 magnitude have struck California: 2010’s Cape Mendocino (6.5) and Baja (7.2), 2012’s Catalina quake (6.3) and 2014’s Cape Mendocino quake (6.8).

Those events sit like an uncomfortable spectre over California, where the picturesque countryside is riddled with fault lines and the threat of earthquake has loomed large for more than a century.

San Francisco’s most famous quake – 1906 – claimed almost 3000 lives and devastated the city.

More recent quakes claimed fewer lives – just 115 in 1933’s Long Beach quake, 65 in 1971’s San Fernando quake, 63 in 1989’s Santa Cruz quake and 60 in Northridge in 1994.

But the lingering uncertainty for California is the widely held belief that the region is “overdue” for a major seismic event.

According to a study in 2011, massive quakes have occurred on the San Andreas faultline roughly every 45 to 144 years.

However, the last massive quake was in 1857, measuring 7.9 magnitude and affecting more than 350 kilometres of the San Andreas faultline. It was, according to historical accounts, felt throughout California.

According to the study, the region is now “overdue for the type of catastrophic quake” often referred to as “The Big One”.

This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.

Cate Campbell, relay fire as girls close out golden Pan Pacs

29/06/2018 // by admin

Cate Campbell has taken a giant step towards the elusive 50m freestyle world record, equalling the fastest non-supersuit time as she raced to gold on the final night of the Pan Pacs Championships on the Gold Coast.
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Campbell won in a time of 23.96 seconds, the same mark set by England’s Commonwealth champion Fran Halsall when she just edged out Campbell in Glasgow. It was the first time Campbell had gone sub 24 seconds and rounds out the Pan Pacs sprint double.

The Brisbane world champion said she had felt fatigued after Glasgow but looked anything but over the past four days at the Southport aquatic complex. She wasn’t troubled in either sprint race, beating sister Bronte to silver on both occasions.

Campbell said she couldn’t fault the swim as the weather finally cleared on the Gold Coast, with fans and athletes greeted with clear skies after days of wind and rain.

“Its been a while since I put together a good 50 and that was it. I think it was the first time this week I’ve been 100 per cent happy with a swim which doesn’t often happen for me,” Campbell said.

“It’s important right from the get go, you only have one shot when it comes to a 50 and you can’t make any mistakes and I think the mistakes I made were very slim so I can’t be happier with that race.

“There will definitely be things to work on but I have left with a genuine smile on my face.”

The world record mark belongs to Germany’s Britta Steffen, who set her 23.73 at the infamous 2009 world championships in Rome, where the polyurethane suits – now outlawed by FINA – saw a staggering 43 world records fall.

Campbell wasn’t done there as she anchored Australia’s 4 x 100m medley relay, which took gold over the USA in the penultimate event on the program.

After a strong lead-off from backstroker Emily Seebohm, Lorna Tonks kept in touch with star USA breaststroker Jessica Hardy before Alicia Coutts unleashed a powerhouse to set up an unassailable lead for Campbell.

The Australian men took bronze in their medley relay as the powerful American team, led by Michael Phelps and Nathan Adrian, ended the meet in fine style.

This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.

Government digs in over budget

29/06/2018 // by admin

Finance Minister Mathias Cormann: If the budget spending cuts are not passed then “the only alternative to balance the books is to increase taxes”. Photo: Wolter PeetersThe federal government is digging in over unpopular cuts in the budget, with cabinet ministers warning other savings measures will be found if a compromise cannot be reached with the opposition and Senate crossbench.
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Finance Minister Mathias Cormann said on Sunday that if the budget spending cuts and savings measures, including the $7 GP co-payment, the rise in fuel excise and changes to university fees, were not passed then “the only alternative to balance the books is to increase taxes”.

Education Minister Christopher Pyne said universities could face a “worst case” scenario of research funding cuts if the Senate did not pass his proposed higher education reforms, which will be introduced to the Parliament on Thursday and include deregulated university fees, cuts to course funding by about 20 per cent and increased interest payments on student loans,

A third cabinet minister, who asked not to be named, declared “we are not for turning. Nor are we worried” about the political impasse over the Coalition’s economic program at this stage of the electoral cycle.

“We are not fazed by six weeks of fevered speculation on the budget. We are at the beginning of the process not the end of it,” the minister said.

“The point is there are consequences to decisions that the Senate makes. We got elected to decide what measures to take, not the Senate, and if the Senate thinks it can manage the budget from the Senate they are wrong.”

The hardening of the government’s rhetoric comes before a cabinet meeting focused on strategy on Monday, before Parliament resumes on Tuesday and builds on Treasurer Joe Hockey’s warning of “emergency action” and Queensland-style austerity about two weeks ago.

In the past month, Mr Hockey has travelled widely to talk to the Senate crossbench amid signs of compromise on some measures and as the government attempts to reset political debate over the budget.

On Sunday, Senator Cormann said there was “no rush to deal with specific structural reforms” because many of these changes would not begin until next July or later.

“Essentially, if we stay on a spending growth trajectory that takes us to 26.5 per cent of the share of GDP when tax revenue on average over the last 20 years was 22.4 per cent of the GDP and [if] you don’t want to balance the books by reducing spending, the only alternative to balance the books is to increase taxes.

“What is Bill Shorten’s plan? Is he planning to increase taxes in order to make up for Labor’s unsustainable spending growth trajectory?”

Mr Pyne said that if the Commonwealth grant scheme wasn’t cut “the only area the government can reduce spending is in areas like research”.

He said the government wanted university students to pay for 50 per cent of their education costs – they currently pay 40 per cent – and that “we’re not asking for their left kidney to be donated”.

Labor’s finance spokesman Tony Burke seized on government warnings of higher taxes as proof of what they were planning in the future.

“Mathias Cormann has been their most disciplined performer and he wouldn’t say this unless Tony Abbott seriously had plans to introduce a raft of new taxes,” he told ABC radio on Monday.

Mr Burke described the tax threat as “more about extortion than it is about governing”.

“This bizarre game where they’re saying if you don’t vote for an unfair budget, we’ll come up with something even more unfair,” he said.

The government may also swiftly again attempt to repeal the mining tax, a move that was stymied in the last sitting of Parliament because of the Palmer United Party’s desire to keep $10 billion in spending measures including the Schoolkids bonus.

Government sources insist that the bill to repeal the mining tax will not be split to allow the tax to be abolished but the spending measures retained.

Mr Palmer’s senators met at the weekend to discuss their budget position.

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This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.