10 things you need to know this morning in Australia

Hold. Hoold. HOOOLD. Picture: Lockheed Martin

Good morning.

1. Our $400 billion defence system will just have to wait – again. The US Department of Defence just received yet another report saying the F-35 stealth fighter has fallen further behind schedule. This time it’s just IT, stability and reliability problems. Software testing has just begun, 11 months after than the planned date, and here’s today’s Not News – the ramp up in testing required to cover it will “add to cost overruns”. At this rate, they won’t be flying before China has developed missiles with ranges long enough to make them redundant.

Oh wait, they already have.

2. To markets and it’s Happy 120th Dow Jones! And it celebrated with a 0.82% lift as materials, energy and financials lifted markets around the globe. All of which is excellent news for the ASX, which coincidentally, just loves good performances from materials, energy and financials. So the June SPI 200 futures are up another 34 points after yesterday’s 77-point rally in the 200 index and, as Greg McKenna says, “if ever there was a solid setup for a strong surge on the ASX200, today is it”.

3. Mark Textor is in top form this week with his election diary. The election-winning consultant to the likes of David Cameron and John Howard this week compares us all to innocent geese who are force-fed animal by-products and kept in a dark place covered in s..t. Yes, today we’re talking about election polls.

4. The Labor MP who “forgot” to declare a $2.3m house just gave a disastrous interview on his party’s election promises. Batman MP David Feeney took a week off from his weekly spot on Sky News with political editor David Speers to figure out how he would explain failing to declare a $2.3 million investment property for three years. Those in his electorate wondering how they’ll ever buy a home would have been thrilled to hear him say how he simply forgot to register it and had no idea whether it was negatively geared or not. Then stuff up on a few other key policy questions as well.

5. Whoa:

That’s the first issue of the new series released today. Marvel’s executive editor Tom Brevoort confirmed to “USA Today” that, yep, this is the real Steve Rodgers, and not a decoy or shapeshifting duplicate. “His mission is to further the goals and beliefs of Hydra,” Brevoort told the paper. “If that involves taking down the Marvel universe, sure.”

6. Apple CEO Tim Cook sees iPhones everywhere, even in 346-year-old paintings. Here’s a Pieter de Hooch piece from 1670 Cook was shown in Amsterdam yesterday:

“There was an iPhone in one of the paintings,” Cook told a Start-up Fest event the following day. (We shouldn’t have to say this, but he was kidding.) And he better get back home soon anyway, because the numbering on iPhones is a mess and it won’t make sense to call the next one the iPhone 7, according to Steve Kovach. Here’s why.

7. In Nigeria, a new oil cartel is accidentally helping OPEC slash its output. Nigerian oil production has fallen by 31% this year to about 1.4 million barrels a day, down from 2.03 million barrels a day in January. Here’s why you can thank a new militant group called the Niger Delta Avengers for keeping oil prices from falling through the floor.

8. Microsoft has all but bailed completely on the smartphone market, announcing a further 2000 layoffs in its phone hardware department, mostly in Finland. Here’s the chart users who loved the buttery-smooth Windows Phone experience almost as much as they hated developers’ refusal to make apps for it don’t want to see:

So is it the end for Windows on phones? No – we said “all but”, but it’s a big “but”.

9. The fallout from the latest episode of “Game of Thrones” was so great, co-creators D.B. Weiss and David Benioff just issued their first ever apology to viewers for the trauma they caused. But it might not be for the reason you think. And yes, this post will absolutely tell you which of your favourite characters gets the chop.

10. Tina Nicolai was once a recruiter for Walt Disney World in the late 1990s. But she grew tired of reading flawed resumés, so in 2010, she founded Resumé Writers’ Ink, and since then, she’s read more than 40,000 resumés. And these are the three most annoying things she’s seen.

BONUS ITEM: At the risk of running two Star Wars Bonus Items in two days, we can’t resist showing off Disney’s new vinyl version of the “Force Awakens” soundtrack. Because it’s got holographic TIE fighters on it:


Have a great day.

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