Daily News Roundup

January 19, 2021

ABC Rural: Margot Kelly



The Duke of Sussex has ‘discarded life as an action man to become an airy-fairy do-gooder’ with a ‘woke West Coast life’, a royal biographer has claimed.

Prince Harry, 36, and Meghan Markle, 39, are currently residing in their $14million mansion in Santa Barbara with one-year-old son Archie, and have racked up as much as £100m in deals with Spotify and Netflix. 

Royal expert Angela Levin, who wrote Harry: Conversations with the Prince in 2018, has claimed that the Duke has become a ‘shadow of his former self’ since moving to California. 

Writing in The Sunday Telegraph, she said while Prince Harry ‘balked at being “the spare” to Prince William, he seems to accept being second to Meghan’. 

The biographer said Prince Harry’s recent appearances were ‘out of character’ from the royal she once knew, who would instantly identify with everyone he spoke to. 

She referenced his previous work with Help for Heroes, those with disabilities and teenagers from dysfunctional homes – but said it feels like a distant memory compared with the version of the prince she sees today.  

The biographer also referenced this year’s Remembrance Day, when Harry and Meghan celebrated by visiting the Los Angeles National cemetery to pay their respects to fallen Commonwealth soldiers.

The couple were slammed for arranging for celebrity fashion photographer Lee Morgan to capture their personal act of Remembrance, with many branding the visit as a ‘publicity stunt’. 

Angela said Harry in particular would have been a great source of comfort to Brits during the Covid pandemic, but felt regret that he’s been hidden away in Santa Barbara throughout the pandemic. 

Yet she commented that reports the pair want a 12-month extension to the Megxit deal indicate the Duke is missing ‘all the privileges’ of being a royal, including his honorary military titles and charity work.

She said: ‘Perhaps he just realises that royalty is forever, but celebrity is not.’   

Her comments come days after royal expert Hugo Vickers said Prince Harry is ‘isolated from his family, the army, his friends, the Commonwealth’ in the US, telling The Telegraph: ‘It’s a pointless existence in self-exile.’


Shoppers are being warned to expect higher produce prices at the checkout in the coming months after government programs failed to attract enough workers to address the industry’s ongoing farm labour shortages.

In mid-2020, the horticulture industry warned it was on track to face a shortfall of 26,000 seasonal workers by March due to international border closures that have locked out many working holiday-makers.

But the latest government data shows incentives by the Federal and Queensland governments, aimed at attracting more Australians to take up picking jobs, have only had a combined uptake of about 500 people.

A spokesman for the Federal Employment Minister, Michaelia Cash, said the Government’s Harvest Trail relocation assistance program — offering up to $6,000 to Australians who move to regional areas for harvest jobs — attracted 453 workers between its inception in November and December 31.

Queensland’s Agriculture Minister Mark Furner said about 60 people had applied for payments of up to $1,500 through a similar State Government scheme.

For growers on Queensland’s Granite Belt, the effects of the shortage are intensifying as the region’s peak harvest period, from February to April, draws nearer.

“I think we’re going to see increased pressure across the board on our available labour,” Granite Belt Growers Association President, Angus Ferrier, said.

“We would need hundreds of people to pick apples alone, let alone all the other fresh fruit and veg that’s grown here.


Outgoing first lady Melania Trump has bid farewell to Americans in a recorded video she posted on Twitter, where she also received backlash for not giving Jill Biden a tour of the White House.

Ms Trump thanked Americans for the “greatest honour of my life”, and made no mention of the incoming Joe Biden administration.

She urged people to chose “peace over violence” just two days ahead of Mr Biden’s inauguration, and called on every American “to be an ambassador” of her youth wellbeing initiative, Be Best.

As the Trumps prepare to leave the White House, this may be the final time we hear from Melania as first lady.

“The past four years have been unforgettable,” she said.

“As Donald and I conclude our time in the White House, I think of all of the people I have taken home in my heart, and their incredible stories of love, patriotism and determination.”

Ms Trump has also bucked tradition by not inviting the incoming first lady, Dr Biden, to tour the White House before her husband takes office.

CNN reported that she is the first modern first lady to not take her successor “for a walk-through of the private living quarters on the second and third floors”.

Former first lady Michelle Obama met with Ms Trump well ahead of her Mr Trump’s 2017 inauguration.

The pair had tea at the White House in November 2016.

Ms Obama also had a similar meeting with Laura Bush before Barack Obama was sworn in.

But Ms Trump’s move is in line with her husband who has already announced he will not attend the inauguration.

He’s the first outgoing President to skip the ceremony in 152 years, and will depart for Florida hours before Mr Biden’s swearing-in.

Mr Biden’s inauguration day will look very different to Mr Trump’s, and not just because of COVID-19.

Be the first to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.