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The ‘genius’ taxidermy got the House Rules perfect score

It seems mounting ‘Laurence the peacock’ on a bedroom wall is a winning idea inHouse Rules.
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Kate and Harry scored a perfect 30 out of 30 for their renovation of Sydney’s Bezzina House apartment in neoclassical design, which included having to use taxidermy.

“I cannot believe that Laurence [Llewelyn-Bowen] askedyou to usetaxidermy.I felt like you took that rule and absolutely smashed it.Itwas amazing,” judge WendyMooregloated.

“I walked into that space so nervous,” said LLB, who assigned Kate and Harry their rules. “And I was blown away.

“Absolutely blown away by the fact that you hadn’t just got it right, you’ve done something that was totally, totally you two.

“If you’d just absorbed the rules and just regurgitated the rules without thinking about them it could have been sosoulless.”

LLB’s evil genius plan for taxidermy payed off for Kate and Harry on House Rules. Photo: Seven

Wendy said she felt the stress melt away with their “elegant” colourscheme, even hard-scoring judge Drew Heath found the bedroom “fun, playful and intelligent”.

“Now I don’t want this style of work to catch on in Australia but I have to give you a nine,” said Drew.

As to the choice of taxidermy, LLB saw the humour in what they picked.

“Now I was more than happy to accept a discreet little glass dome in the corner with some pretty little bird of paradise, you gave me an entire peacock,” said an animated LLB.”So I walked into that bedroom and I was face-to-face with myself stuck on a wall.”

Kate and Harry’s bedroom mounted ‘Laurence the peacock’ on the wall. Photo: Seven

The studio and host Joh Griggs almost lost it laughing at LLB’s comments.

“It was a masterstroke, absolute masterstroke,” LLB continued. “It was genius because right at the outset I had always hoped that being part of this competition would provide me with things that professionals would never do, and you have broken so many rules to make the most perfect rules, culminating with what you did in the bathroom… you two have brought a freshness and creativity to what you have done in this challenge that I amabsolutely in awe of.”

“That stuffed dead bird has really paid off,” said a delighted Kate.

Drew thought they did even better in the common room, with their “plush” fittings. Wendy got emotional.

“You are going places where angels fear to tread and as a result you’re making some incredibly creative, very inspiring interiors,” said LLB of his “proteges”.

“Thank you very much for sharing them with me.”

Kate, who thought LLB’s rules were her worst nightmareand hadconstants fights with Harry about their design choices, had the last laugh. “Laurence’s rules were a huge risk and it looks like they might have paid off.”

Wendy went one better than Drew with a 10 and LLB “of course” gave them a 10. So with their bonus point for their statement piece they scored 30 out of 30.

“You are such a success story as far as I’m concerned,” said LLB.

“That means you two have secured your place in the grand final,” said Griggs.

Even formerpatient Judd, from Canberra, who was diagnosed with cancer 15 years ago, enjoyed viewing the couple’s apartment: “How good is this?”

He had 18 operations and 30 weeks of chemotherapy at the nearby hospital.

“Family and friends spend 150 nights here [at Bezzina House],” he said.

But Bezzina House manager Denise did look startled at the peacock, with Judd’s daughter going “there’s a bird in the bedroom?” to good-humoured mirth from her parents.

“It’s definitely a home away from home, so elegant,” said Denise. “That’s what our patients deserve.”

“So rewarding to have those patients actually come through and really appreciate the hard work we’ve done,” said a pleased Harry.

It was much the same for Aaron and Daniella’s’art deco’ apartment assigned by Wendy, and Jono and Andrew’s ‘modern’ apartment from Drew.

The Black family from western Sydney spent seven months in Bezzina in 2008 while mother Ann underwent cancer treatment.”I can’t thank everyone enough for what they’ve done for us and for everyone else,” said a very teary Mrs Black.

Despite Aaron and Daniella’s art deco feature wall and “luxe” bathroom delivering “really heart warming moments” with the judges, their trifecta of eights meant they had a nervous wait to see what the judges scored Andrew and Jono.

Jono looked heartbroken when the judges decided that the brother’s “bland” but “lovely” designs were”not the risky personality that we needed to see” and ended up with only 22 out of 30 against Aaron and Dee’s 24/30.

So Kate and Harry will battle against their besties Aaron and Daniellafor the $200,000 prize to see if the past six months away from their children were worth it.

TheHouse Rules2017 Grand Finale airs on Sunday.

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McCormack cites Bradman to side-step census attack

Small Business Minister Michael McCormack.Small Business Minister Michael McCormack has found a unique way to bat-away criticism of the 2016 census “fail”, by citing the career batting average of cricket’s greatest ever batsman – Sir Donald Bradman.
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Mr McCormack came under intense pressure last year over the government’s handling of the census; especially challenges with using new online resources and systems to aid household data collection, by the Australian Bureau of Statistics.

But after a lengthy break in the controversy, the NSW Nationals MP for the rural seat of Riverina was forced to again defend the integrity of the troubled census, following the release of its results last week, during an on-air radio interview.

Mr McCormack said an Independent Assurance Panel had stated in its report that the 2016 census had compared well to other censuses conducted in the UK, Canada and NZ and was “certainly on par with previous censuses in Australia”.

“95.1 per cent of households have returned the census – 95.1, in fact, was Sir Donald Bradman’s all-time batting average in all first class cricket, so 95.1 – I’ll take that,” he said of the final score.

Served with a suggested correction about his choice of numbers, Mr McCormack hit back at the radio presenter’s accuracy.

He said Sir Donald Bradman’s Test batting average was 99.94 – but he also had a career ending average of 95.1 runs per innings, for all first class cricket matches.

Michael McCormack

Mr McCormack also sought to highlight outcomes for regional Australia in the statistics gathering exercise, by officially launching the 2016 census results at West Wyalong in central-western NSW.

Asked why he’d taken the census results to a regional location this year, instead of a traditional metropolitan area, Mr McCormack said: “I am a regional MP”.

“And as Australia’s first Small Business Minister from a country area I felt it was important to show what the data means for the regions,” he said.

“It’s in my electorate and West Wyalong is a great little town.

“Its population is 3141 and what a great place to launch the Census data release from.

“The Census does provide a snapshot of the nation as it is, because – like I say – West Wyalong’s a little town but there are some really interesting figures out of it.”

Mr McCormack said West Wyalong had grown by 3 per cent and its internet per household had grown from 62 per cent to 69 per cent.

“And one of the really interesting stats out of the census was the fact that 29pc – which is up on the State average of 18pc – of the residents of West Wyalong aged over 15 years spent time volunteering,” he said.

“It shows what a caring, compassionate community West Wyalong is and that’s emblematic of country communities – I think – right across the nation.”

“West Wyalong is one of those little communities which rely so heavily – as part of Bland Shire – on good, reliable Census information.

“That’s so decision-makers – whether they’re in business or whether they’re in government at all levels – can make the decisions to fund equitably, to make the business case for smaller country communities; especially remote communities, to help them plan and ultimately grow.

“That’s what the Census does.

“It’s a snapshot as it is at that time, to make informed decisions when it comes to Government allocating funds and businesses building.”

Mr McCormack said the census was held every five year’s results contained more than 68 million facts in 2.8 million tables.

“It does show the majority of people live in the eastern State capitals – that’s a real take-home statistic,” he said.

“But the other one too is the fact that housing affordability is a really interesting stat out of the Census.

“The fact is the percentage of incomes being spent on mortgages and on rents is far, far lower in regional areas.

The other thing I want people to remember – I have said it before and I will keep saying it – there are jobs in regional Australia for those people who want them and there are good-paying jobs as well.

“It’s not always about living in the city, and as a National Party member and as a country MP, I will always plug country areas.

“They are a great place to live, to raise a family in and to work and invest.”

Mr McCormack said this year’s results also showed that within capital city areas there was a 10.5 per cent growth in population since 2011 – nearly double the rate found in other areas (5.7 per cent).

He said more than 15 million people (67 per cent)are now living in a capital city.

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‘I would not want my wife to undergo this procedure’: pelvic mesh inventor

Gai Thompson, lawyer Rebecca Jancauskas and Jo Manion outside the federal court on Tuesday. Picture: Joanne McCarthyA FRENCH doctor who invented aJohnson & Johnson pelvic mesh device told another doctor in 2005 that “I would not want my wife to undergo this procedure”, the federal court in Sydney was told today.
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Dr Bernard Jacquetin made the comment in an email to another doctor in the same year his Johnson & Johnson Prolift device was cleared for use in Australia.

The comment, revealed in a Johnson & Johnson internal document on the first day of a landmark class action by more than 700 Australian women, drew gasps from some of the women sitting in the public gallery at the federal court.

Tony Bannon SC, for the women, told Justice Anna Katzmann that Dr Jacquetin, who was part of a Johnson & Johnson transvaginal mesh evaulation team, concluded his comment about not wanting to have his wife to have a mesh procedure by saying “and I don’t think I’m alone in that”.

Mr Bannon told the court the comments’ message was “those of us who were in the know”.

Tony Bannon SC

The landmark case, which has attracted international media attention, is expected to take six months.

Mr Bannon told the court each of the 700 women had suffered continuous, frequent and often unbearable pain.

“Their enjoyment of life has been seriously compromised,” he said. “Their lives have been dramatically altered for the worse.”

Up to 100,000 Johnson & Johnson pelvic mesh devices for incontinence or pelvic organ prolapse were implanted in Australian women.

The three lead complainants in the case were seeking substantial damages in the hundreds of thousands of dollars, Mr Bannon told the court.

RELATED READING: Pelvic mesh implant investigationThe court heard evidence from another internal Johnson & Johnson document from May 2010 which described the kind of doctor the mesh devices were aimed at.

They were doctors who could “do” a Johnson & Johnson TVT mesh device in eight minutes.

Johnson & Johnson envisaged these doctor-clients as the kind who would see the devices helping enhance their reputations and revenues.

They were more likely “mid-career doctors” who saw their practices as businesses.

The court heard the internal Johnson & Johnson document pictured doctors who would use the product as the type who would also enjoy holidays in St Moritz and Lamborghinis.

The document quoted one of the imagined doctor-clients as saying “that makes four (mesh surgeries) before lunch, that works for me”.

Mr Bannon told the court the document exhibited the internal approach of Johnson & Johnson to the mesh devices.

He said there was a valuable market to be gained out there by emphasising the speed of the mesh surgery.

The court will also hear of the lack of evidence supporting the safety and efficacy of pelvic mesh devices.

One of the women implanted with a pelvic mesh device, Jo Manion, left the courtroom after Mr Bannon read the internal Johnson & Johnson documents.

Ms Manion wasvisibly upset through some of the evidence.

The hearing continues.

The Herald, Newcastle

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Police investigating Pilbara death at Rio Tinto mine site

Police are yet to confirm where the death occurred. Photo: Erin JonassonA person has died at Rio Tinto’s Yandicoogina mine site in the Pilbara on Tuesday.
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The incidentwas reported to police around midday, with investigators on their way to the scene – 100kilometres north of Newman.

Fairfax Mediaunderstands the worker died as a result of an explosion.

Police said they believe the deceased is a man aged in his early 50s.

Emergency services will not be releasing any further details until the person’s next of kin have been notified.

Rio Tinto confirmed the site has been shut down following the incident.

In a statement a company spokesman said: “An employee at Rio Tinto’sYandicooginairon ore mine passed away this morning following a serious incident on site.

“Emergency services are on scene. Rio Tinto has advised the relevant authorities and will assist their investigations.

“The company will provide all the necessary support for the employee’s family and colleagues during this difficult time.”

It’s the first death at a WA mine site in a year.

Mine deaths in WA since 2013July2016: A man in his 60s died after a bridge collapsed at Central Norseman Gold Mine in the Goldfields.

Lee Buzzard, June 2016: Mr Buzzard died while performing maintenance on a drill head at Rio Tinto’s Channar mine near Paraburdoo.

Benjamin White, November 2015: Mr White, a scaffolder, died after falling into a process vessel at Alcoa’s Kwinana refinery.

November 2015: A 28-year-old jumbo offsider collapsed while working underground on night shift in hot conditions at the Paulsens Gold Mine south of Pannawonica in the Pilbara and died the next day.

September 2015: A 56-year-old man was fatally injured when his haul truck rolled over at Cornishman Pit gold mine near Southern Cross.

Joshua Martin, May 2015: Mr Martin was fatally crushed while working at Telfer mine in the Pilbara.

Adam Hardaker, May 2015: Mr Hardaker was fatally struck by a 700 kilogram rock that rolled from an open stope while working at Nifty Copper underground mine in the Pilbara region.

Philip Kitching, January 2015: Mr Kitching was fatally crushed while conducting maintenance work on a bulldozer at Woodie Woodie Manganese mine in the Pilbara region.

Colin Whitton, September 2014: Electrician Mr Whitton was fatally while carrying out maintenance on a lift at BHP’s Worsley alumina refinery in Collie.

Lance Farber, May 2014: Mr Farber was fatally crushed when he was trapped between the mast and frame of a forklift truck at Brightstar gold mine near Laverton in the Goldfields.

Wayne Fowlie, February 2014: Mr Fowlie was killed when a six metre wall collapsed on him while he was trying to clean a bogger at Central Norseman Gold’s Harlequin underground mine in the Goldfields.

Allen Zuvela, December 2013: Mr Zuvela was fatally crushed while working underneath a 2.5 tonne can which fell from its rigging at FMG’s Christmas Creek mine in the Pilbara.

Stephen Hampton, December 2013: Mr Hampton was fatally crushed by a pipe which slid down an embankment and pinned him against a wall at Newcrest’s Telfer gold mine in the Pilbara.

Kurt Williams, August 2013:Mr Williams was killed while performing maintenance at an iron ore process facility at FMG’s Christmas Creek mine in the Pilbara.

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‘Flew for 39 minutes’: Latest North Korea test puts Darwin in reach

Beijing:North Korea has claimed its firstsuccessful launch of an Intercontinental Ballistic Missile, defying a tweet by US President Donald Trump in Januarythat “It won’t happen!”.
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Experts estimated thatif the missile had been launched at a “normal” angle, instead of the steep trajectory used in the test, itcould have flown more than 6000kilometres, a distance that would see itreachthe US mainland.

This range also brings Darwin within reach.

The North Korean state news agency KCNA said on Tuesday afternoon that an Intercontinental Ballistic Missile was launchedat 9amunder the supervision of leader Kim Jong-un.

“It flew 39 minutes on orbit, before striking a preset target in open sea,” KCNA reported. North Korean state television released images of the missile and showed the order that Mr Kim had personally signed for the test.

The Hwasong-14rose 2802 kilometresand flew 933 kilometres.

“With its nuclear weapons, the DPRK, as a proud nuclear power with the most powerful ICBM which is able to strike any corner of the world, will fundamentallyroot out the US’s nuclear war threat and confidently safeguard peace and stability in Korean Peninsula and the region,” the report proclaimed.

Experts in South Korea and Japan had already warned the missilemay have been an ICBM.

A picture from North Korean media which purports to show the intercontinental ballistic missile launched on July 4, 2017. Kim Jong-un is apparently standing on the right, in a dark suit. Photo: Supplied

South Korean President Moon Jae-in said: “I hope North Korea will not cross the point of no return.”

An ICBM test, or a nuclear test,by North Korea have been widely seen as red lines that would provoke newUnited Nations Security Council sanctions, or a tougher response from the United States.

The Trump administration had declared the “era of strategic patience was over” with North Korea, and had earlier in the year suggestedthat it could take military action. Howeverthis approached thensoftened in favour of working with China to enforce sanctions.

The USambassador to the UN, NikkiHaley,told NBC inApril that an intercontinental ballistic missile would be cause for the US “to do something”.

People watch North Korea’s KRT television announcing the launch of an intercontinental ballistic missile. Photo: Getty Images

“If you see him attack a military base, if you see some sort of intercontinental ballistic missile, then obviously we’re going to do that,” she said.

Mr Moon on Tuesday called for UN Security Council action in response to the new missile test, which came within days of his first meeting with Mr Trump.

Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Geng Shuang said “China is against the DPRK’s launch, which isin violation of the UN Security Council resolutions”. He called for calm.

The ICBM launch cameas tensions re-emerge between China and the United States, which last week agreed to a controversial $1.42 billion arms deal with Taiwan.

South Korean President Moon Jae-in at a meeting of the country’s National Security Council on Tuesday. Photo: Handout

Mr Trump calledChinese President Xi Jinping on Sunday, with Chinese state media reporting that Mr Xi had told him relations have been affected by “some negative factors”.

China is pushing for a return to dialogue with North Korea, and a halt to South Korean and US military exercises on the Korean Peninsula in return for a North Korean freeze to weapons testing.

Mr Xi metwith Russian President Vladimir Putin in Moscowon Tuesday, where they said they had agreed to strengthen coordination on North Korea.

Some analysts have suggested North Korea’s acceleration of testswas a way of strengthening its bargaining chips before sitting down at the negotiating table with the US.

Before the confirmation of an ICBM,Mr Trump had tweeted his frustration with North Korea, writing: “Perhaps China will put a heavy move on North Korea and end this nonsense once and for all.”

Foreign Minister Julie Bishop said Australia condemned Pyongyang’s “provocative ballistic tests”, noting they breached numerous resolutions of the UN Security Council.

Euan Graham, director of international security at the Lowy Institute for International Policy, said early analysisindicated Pyongyang had make a major breakthrough in its missile program.

“There is now the capability to reach northern Australia, that will get it to Darwin and further south,” he said.

North Korea just stated that it is in the final stages of developing a nuclear weapon capable of reaching parts of the U.S. It won’t happen!

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 2, 2017

Dr Graham said the breakthrough raised “embarrassing questions” for US President Donald Trump, given his Twitter declaration in January.

“What they’ve done just this year since February is to demonstrate a new proven missile capability in all four significant ranges,” he said.

Dr Graham said there were “no good unilateral options” for the US.

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