That's it for today: thanks for tuning in to the second week of our new live morning blog, see you tomorrow from 6am. Hope you have a great week. Meanwhile send your ideas, comments, feedback to firstname.lastname@example.org
Weather update: a fine day ahead for Melbourne with a top of 25. Some early morning cloud clearing to a mainly sunny day. Currently 19 degrees. Full weather here
Traffic: a shocker day for the Ring Road – there are now two lanes blocked Altona-bound due to a collision near Pascoe Vale Road.
How to be happy at work: before we leave you for the day, here’s some tips on how to make your work day more fun (or at least bearable).
1. Organise a daily coffee run.
2. Spring clean your desk.
3. Say thank you to someone.
4. Learn something new.
5. Have lunch or coffee with someone at work you don't know well.
More tips here…
Ouch! Melbourne is the fifth most expensive place to live in the world according to the Pew Research Center and the Economist Intelligence Unit. We'll come back with more details soon.
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Most expensive cost of living 1 Tokyo 2 Osaka 3 Sydney 4 Oslo 5 Melbourne 6 Singapore 7 Zurich 8 Paris 9 Caracas 10 Geneva analysis @TheEIU— Conrad Hackett (@conradhackett) February 16, 2014
A good news story this morning - a record number of Koori students completed high school in Victoria last year. Full story
Traffic: there’s a lane blocked on the Ring Road outbound due to a breakdown just near the Craigieburn Bypass. Expect delays.
Politics: The first Fairfax/Nielsen poll shows the Abbott government has regained the lead over the Labor opposition with support for Opposition Leader Bill Shorten plummeting: bit.ly/1oDhbUg
- Michael Gordon and Peter Hartcher analyse the poll news: bit.ly/1mlZEkT and bit.ly/1hnOxFP
- Coming up later today, Online political editor Chris Hammer will interview Labor MP Andrew Leigh and Liberal MP Andrew Laming as well as pollster John Stirton on the latest Fairfax/Nielsen poll. Streaming online from 10.30am.
- Asylum seekers have rioted on Manus Island with the Immigration Department confirming a disturbance: bit.ly/1dApBaI
- Employment Minister Eric Abetz and Labor finance spokesman Tony Burke will appear on ABC's Q&A tonight at 9.30pm.
Cate Blanchett has won the Best Actress BAFTA award for Blue Jasmine. More here
And some more early-morning shots of the Queen Mary 2 at Station Pier. Wikipedia tells us that when the ship was launched in 2003 she was the longest, widest and tallest passenger ship ever built. There are some 2500 passengers on board today, possibly enjoying (deep breath) the 15 restaurants and bars, five swimming pools, casino, theatre and planetarium.
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PHOTO: The Queen Mary 2 arrives at Station Pier in Port Melbourne this morning. Photo: Penny Stephens pic.twitter.com/i4ZB8uY8kY— The Age Photography (@theage_photo) February 16, 2014
Letter of the day, from Chris Atmore, Federation of Community Legal Centres, Melbourne:
While community and media share grief over Luke Batty's killing, the complexities need unraveling by Victoria's Systemic Review of Family Violence Deaths before we draw conclusions about what went wrong.
Death reviews and related research tell us that family violence deaths are eminently preventable. The very system that failed Luke needs to come together and collaborate on working out what went wrong and how to fix it: full letter here
Cartoonist Bruce Petty's comment on the Australian car industry today...
Today’s Odd Spot: A bill to legalise rubber duck races in the US state of Wisconsin has been approved by the state assembly. The bill comes after Wisconsin’s Justice Department warned the village of Mishicot that its annual rubber duck race amounted to illegal gambling. Charities commonly race the little plastic ducks, with numbers on the bottom, as fund-raisers.
Trains: Daniel Bowen reports via Twitter that there’s no power to the Myki reader at Huntingdale Station at Oakleigh – so you can’t touch on or off. What happens when you get to the other end?
Weather: a fine day ahead for Melbourne with a top of 25. Some early morning cloud clearing to a mainly sunny day. Currently 17 degrees. Full weather hereBack to top
In case you missed it, Matt Golding’s cartoon...
Traffic: a 19-year-old woman was trapped in her car Friday night (corrected) in Williams Road, South Yarra, after it flipped over following a collision with a parked car. Police are appealing for witnesses. Full story
@theage how on earth would/could you flip a car on a suburban peak hour road ???— RMT3 (@f_roggy) February 16, 2014
Traffic: there’s been an accident on Sunshine Avenue in Sunshine North.
Religion in schools: the debate continues about the principals who are defying the law and refusing to teach religion in primary schools. Join in on Twitter with @theage
Primary school principals shut down religious education classes http://t.co/fjQ0U3qYOH— The Age (@theage) February 16, 2014