No News

In a stab at “reputation management”, angina which is what overpriced fuckers are calling self-promotion these days, pilule I list recent writing published online.
(Bound to remain out-of-date at all times other than those when I have a book overdue to the publisher.)
May’16
Razer confesses: I am a Real Housewife | Daily Review
Helen Razer: why I won’t vote Greens in the federal election | Crikey
The wisdom of children | SBS Life
Razer: Belle Gibson, pilule the media and other snake oil salesmen | Daily Review
Helen Razer: a Donald Trump presidency might be necessary | Crikey
Razer on Crocodile Dundee: Between a thong and a hard place | Daily Review
Apr’16
Helen Razer: CSIRO versus private sector innovation | Crikey
We should stop saying youngsters have it easy – because they don’t | SBS Life
Razer: What Anzac Day lets us forget | Daily Review
Razer: Purple Poetry for Prince | Daily Review
Beyondblue anxiety mental health campaign worthless | Crikey
How free are we when it comes to choosing? | SBS
Razer: Pistol whipped by the USA | Daily Review
AMC’s ‘Better Call Saul’ | The Saturday Paper
60 Minutes’ racist fiction in Lebanon abduction | Crikey
Is it organic? When lifestyle choices have gone too far | SBS
Razer: Erin Heatherton and the pains of a lingerie model | Daily Review
Helen Razer: Barbie dolls don’t cause domestic violence | Crikey
The big engine of racism | SBS Life
Razer: The Media’s brand of sexism is more newsworthy and glamourous than yours | Daily Review
Mar ’16
Helen Razer: Donald Trump vulgarity vs Barack Obama | Crikey
Spiritual tourism | SBS Life
Razer: Confessions of an ultra-racist, millenial Nazi whore | Daily Review
Helen Razer: Safe Schools, Safe Neoliberalism | Crikey
Helen Razer: Mother Teresa was terrible | Crikey
Razer: Kim Kardashian’s Moment of Righteous Feminist Candour | Daily Review
Helen Razer: International Women’s Day has sold out | Crikey
Razer on Peta Credlin, Niki Savva and primordial female horror | Daily Review
Helen Razer: end negative gearing, capital gains tax concessions | Crikey
Feb ’16
Razer on the Oscars Red Carpet: Who are you wearing? | Daily Review
Ascribing meaning to reality TV | The Saturday Paper
Helen Razer: how Andrew Bolt, the right stopped being funny | Crikey

Razer: Rob Thomas, racist jokes, and how to apologise like you mean it | Daily Review
Helen Razer: Donald Trump, Bernie Sanders do politics right | Crikey
Razer on the Lawrence Mooney stoush (and where you can stick your opinion) | Daily Review
Helen Razer: Nauru asylum seekers our fault | Crikey
Razer: ABC2 is a treatment plant for cultural waste | Daily Review
Helen Razer: vitamins are ineffective and dangerous | Crikey
Razer reviews ‘I’m a Celebrity’: get me out of this colonial nightmare! | Daily Review
Jan ’16
Helen Razer: how left and right both love outrage | Crikey
Je Suis Mark Latham: Razer on Charlie Hebdo, free speech and former Labor leaders | Daily Review
Helen Razer: $2 Target shirt outrage | Crikey
Razer on James Franco, Bachelor bath pics and why better entertainment won’t make for a better world | Daily Review
Wetsboro, contemporary feminism and the diminishing difference between them | Crikey
Helen Razer: on David Bowie’s life and death | Crikey
Razer: what can we learn from the Chris Gayle incident? Absolutely nothing | Daily Review
Razer: Carol, Suffragette and insufferable, Oscar-bait ‘Social Issues’ movies | Daily Review
Dec ’15
Helen Razer: 2015 year in review | Crikey
Razer: Turnbull’s arts credentials go down the toilet | Daily Review
Helen Razer: Bill Leak Australian cartoon is racist, that is the point | Crikey
Gay shame and “acceptable” LGBTI heroes | SBS
The Year in Stupid Shit: Razer’s 10 worst of 2015 | Daily Review
Helen Razer: Malcolm Turnbull’s innovation plan sux | Crikey
Razer: why violent threats don’t make a commentator ‘important’ | Daily Review
Helen Razer: John Safran, Father Bob leave Triple J | Crikey
Nov ’15
Razer: ‘rock star’ economist Yanis Varoufakis and the perils of U2 | Daily Review
Zoolander 2 boycott is really, really, ridiculously dumb | SBS
Helen Razer: more money needed for mental health services | Crikey
Adam Hills says cystitis, Razer says ISIS | Daily Review
Aziz Ansari’s new TV series ‘Master of None’ | The Saturday Paper
Telstra Businesswoman of the Year Award & feminism | Crikey
Razer: imagine there’s no history, you don’t even need to try | Daily Review
Helen Razer: Michelle Bridges right, gardeners are freaks | Crikey
Razer: Warm ‘understanding’ is no match for cold fact | Daily Review
Tolstoy’s Anna Karenina adapted for ‘The Beautiful Lie’ | The Saturday Paper
Junkee Junket unconference and empowerment | Crikey
Germaine Greer is ruining the world again | Daily Review
Oct ’15
Waterwise tips to beat this summer’s killer heat | The Saturday Paper
Silicon Valley, Wyatt Roy embrace tech speak weasel words | Crikey
Razer: Sam de Brito the dissident | Daily Review
Helen Razer: Grace Bellavue an advocate for sex work | Crikey
Razer: The sad ascension of Amy Schumer | Daily Review
Razer: The road to hell is paved by Bono | Daily Review
The nightmare of anxiety that’s all your fault | Crikey
Helen Razer’s mea culpa (and the tyranny of internet debate) | Daily Review
TV’s new prime-time soap opera ‘Empire’ | The Saturday Paper
Bindi Irwin is no ‘role model’ | SBS News
Razer climbs on the Blockhead Express aka The Verdict | Daily Review
Helen Razer: we need gun control, but economic control more important | Crikey
Not so nice: Razer on ABC’s guileless Mental Health Week | Daily Review
Hermione’s opinion and the philosopher’s tone | SBS News
Sep ’15
Karen the activist typical of futile awareness ads | Crikey
Razer: Lena Dunham has no place in politics | Daily Review
How society disables people with disabilities | SBS News
Malcolm Turnbull’s cabinet appointments not good for women | Crikey
Turnbull’s Ikea catalogue moment: The 21st century cabinet | Daily Review
Comment: Don’t blame skinny models for anorexia | SBS News
Tony Abbott’s worst 10 moments as prime minister | Crikey
Razer: Not the Boy Next door is not your usual home grown crap | Daily Review
Comment: Brave, #SoBrave and The Project’s gooey TV | SBS News
Helen Razer: Tony Abbott’s Syrian refugee decision political cunning | Crikey
Razer on the refugee crisis, the banality of evil and futility of ‘compassion’ | Daily Review
How To Stop Caring — Medium
Australia bombing Syria to win Canning byelection | Crikey
Razer: beauty, the market, and the lies of the ‘makeup free revolution’ | Daily Review
Aug’15
Australianising American news satire | The Saturday Paper
Helen Razer: civil discourse is nonsense | Crikey
Razer on Romance writers: These broads have no time for nonsense | Daily Review
Helen Razer: Mark Latham is the Kim Kardashian of Labor | Crikey
Melbourne Writers Festival: Helen Razer’s picks | Daily Review
Razer: Don’t look for moral guidance from sport stars – or sport writers | Daily Review
Helen Razer: gay marriage good for the Liberal Party | Crikey
Razer: The GOP, Donald Trump and other period dramas | Daily Review
Growing berries | The Saturday Paper
Helen Razer: Bronwyn Bishop, Tony Burke travel scandals overblown | Crikey
Razer on MKR’s legal push to have Hotplate turned off | Daily Review
Jul’15
Helen Razer: Sharman Stone’s women quotas idea is potty | Crikey
Razer at the ALP Conference: why Labor can’t stage manage itself | Daily Review
Mr Robot’s fresh take on hacking | The Saturday Paper
Helen Razer: Jimmy Barnes’ Reclaim Australia facebook post out of proportion | Crikey
Amy Schumer review (Arts Centre, Melbourne) | Daily Review
Razer on the outrage economy: see no evil, tweet no evil | Daily Review
Helen Razer: NRA’s gun control message about Australia ridiculous | Crikey
Razer on the so-called lost innocence of that hot liberal daddy, Atticus Finch | Daily Review
Halal Food Labelling | Crikey
Razer: state sanctioned gay marriage is defeat by assimilation | Daily Review
Helen Razer: report on Muslim radicalisation misrepresented by media | Crikey
Jun’15
Top Gear’s Jeremy Clarkson: the simpler baby of Auberon Waugh and Benny Hill | Daily Review
Helen Razer: Tony Abbott’s ‘evil’ invocation and ISIS | Crikey
Razer: Gen X is culpable for its offspring’s online vulnerability | Daily Review
Helen Razer: Julia Gillard’s advice to Hillary Clinton on sexism | Crikey
Razer: Katy Perry, naked yoga and ridding yourself of the flab of social order | Daily Review
Razer on price hikes, Rachel cuts and the Herald Sun | Daily Review
Helen Razer: Fred Nile’s gay QandA a useless program | Crikey
Magna Carta is meaningless – Late Night Live – ABC Radio National | ABC
Razer on Caitlyn Jenner’s Vanity Fair makeover: so what’s not to like? | Daily Review
Helen Razer is against same-sex marriage because marriage itself is the problem | Crikey
Razer on Australia’s Top Model: the only reality show that refuses to lie | Daily Review
May ’15
Into the rainbow with the Muppets | The Saturday Paper
Helen Razer: tampon tax a distraction, GST should be rolled back | Crikey
Razer: when great art happens to terrible people | Daily Review
Helen Razer: Western liberal feminism is wrong about capitalism | Crikey
Helen Razer: the Mad Men finale and the loss of nostalgia | Daily Review
Helen Razer: Pete Evans and the Paleo cult are tools of capitalism | Crikey
Razer: lads’ mags and bad girls aren’t the problem | Daily Review
The Butterfly Foundation, awareness campaign on eating disorders | Crikey
The Royal birth and serving up the lie of normal parenthood with a McFlurry spoon | Daily Review
Apr ’15
Helen Razer: penis emojis banned by Instagram | Crikey
Razer on hoaxes from Ern Malley to Belle Gibson (the Quinoa Demidenko of our times) | Daily Review
Broad City set to become this decade’s Seinfeld | The Saturday Paper
Helen Razer: Mental Health Commission report shows services lacking | Crikey
Razer on Madonna: being and nothingness and the material girl | Daily Review
Razer on Dallas Buyers Club and co-opting gays for profit | Daily Review
Helen Razer: Woolworths Anzac Day campaign appropriate | Crikey
MICF: Rich Hall 3:10 to Humour review | Daily Review
MICF: Suren Jayemanne Eat Praline, Die review | Daily Review
MICF: Luke Heggie You’re Not Special review | Daily Revie
Dallas Buyers Club: how the gays have been co-opted for profit | Crikey
MICF: Paco Ehard in Worst. German. Ever review | Daily Review
MICF: Dave Bloustien The Tinder Profile of Dorian Gray review | Daily Review
Razer on the Daily Show’s Trevor Noah and the ‘lunatics’ calling out his unfunny tweeting past | Daily Review
Helen Razer: Jeremy Clarkson and Top Gear the end of an era | Crikey
Mar ’15
Razer: how the ‘offence debate’ misses the point of comedy | Daily Review
Paleo is a Stupid Cult and it is Killing People | Crikey
The Appearance of Feminism | Sheilas
Lamenting The Hoopla as the media eats itself yet again | Daily Review
War of the weeds | The Saturday Paper
You, not your iPhone, are the gravest threat to your kid | Crikey
Razer: X Factor is not your moral guardian | Daily Review
Q&A’s false democracy | The Saturday Paper
Razer: how Zoolander was a cultural hero in dark 2001 | Daily Review
Helen Razer: Tony Abbott attacks United Nations for lecturing | Crikey
Razer on Mark Latham’s Harden Up prescription for the depressed chattering class | Daily Review
Razer: On “Acceptable” art and hiding Shakespeare’s racism | Daily Review
Helen Razer: negative gearing should go, renting is just fine | Crikey
Razer: beware of false gods and American presidents | Daily Review
Feb ’15
Razer: Abbott govt plays distraction politics with AHRC report | Crikey
Metadata retention: Stay awake – it will affect you | Daily Review
This serves, abortion
in part, as a tip of the hat to anyone who has suffered a period of stalking. I am sorry.

(I am also sorry about the stock photo I ripped off for this hastily written post.)

It largely serves as a brief note to any press representative attempting to contact me for comment on the man recently convicted of stalking current employees of a radio station for which I once worked and at which I was once stalked: I am washing my hair and cannot pick up the phone.

While it is true that almost TWENTY YEARS AGO I did make public comment on the matter, I have no interest in doing so now. Don’t contact me. This is for a few reasons.

First, Reliving My Personal Hell in a newspaper and on television was a dumb idea. I became The Stalked Girl. Here’s a hot tip for anyone thinking about agreeing to divulge their personal trauma to a media outlet: only do it if you get paid by the fuck-tonne. Which I, very foolishly, did not.

“I believe it would be unethical for me to receive payment for the disclosure of my heartbreak!” I said at the time. What a fuckwit.

If you are a person who has suffered some sort of newsworthy violence, please get paid enough for your True Story to keep you going for a couple of years because, damn, girl, no one is going to give you a job afterwards.  Capitalism has no use of a victim as a labourer; only as a single-use commodity. My employers made me redundant after I was declared well enough to return to work. After that, no one wanted to give The Stalked Girl a job at all. I concede that this was due in part to my own naïve and narcissistic compliance with media outlets. Not only did the experience of being pursued by a man become much more harrowing when I played it out twenty times in a public forum (please, do this therapy in a psychiatrist’s office and not on your Facebook page or on talk radio) but it served as some kind of anti-résumé.  I don’t wish to revive that document.

Second. Look, I understand that the violence done to public figures is kind of interesting to hear about. But, it’s not representative of the real violence most people confront. Therefore, I don’t wish to participate in any news story which normalises the very abnormal situation I found myself in. I can say almost nothing to the majority of stalking victims whose experience does not match mine.

I can’t relate my story to most of those who have been the focus of someone else’s obsession because, as we know, such aggressors are generally known to their victim. I imagine that this is far worse than my experience, where it was always clear that I hadn’t done anything to provoke this attention. Of course, no one ever does anything to warrant such violence—and if you don’t think that being pursued and threatened and maligned merits the term violence, then you probably need to see a doctor about that, or at least suspend your quite stalky Twitter account for a while—but, knowing this is different from believing it utterly, and it is much easier for a randomly targeted “celebrity”, such as I was at the time, to know that it wasn’t their fault.

In other words, if purveyors of news really care to address the problem of widespread violence, especially that enacted upon women by men, then the way to go about it is not examining the experience of a victim with a high profile.  Ours is not a widespread problem.

Third. I find that most media discussions of trolling and stalking end up in some kind of police state conversational latrine. People say, “we need to do more to stop the violence”. And, they suggest that harsher penalties and more laws are what is needed. Currently, the law is adequate. And, actually, following the passage of metadata retention legislation, it is far too fucking adequate. You, me and everyone we know can all have their location (how this counts as metadata is beyond me) accessed by a range of government agencies and, call me a crazy libertarian, but this also feels like stalking to me. The way to stop violent intrusion into our lives by individuals is not by sanctioning violent intrusion into our lives by the state.

I find that whenever I receive requests to be interviewed on the matter of stalking, which I always refuse, the journalist always ends up urging for more laws, without bothering to read or understand the existing laws, and harsher penalties. “Lock ‘em up”, they say. And, god, but would I have loved to have seen the guy who stalked me locked up. But, fortunately, I have no legal clout. What he needed was not imprisonment. What he needed was healthcare and other forms of assistance.

I am not saying this because I am nice. I am not fucking nice. I am angry that he fucked up my life and sent me on a fifteen-year odyssey of bad relationships, bad therapists and debt. I am angry that the way I now respond to many persons who seem to have some sort of keen interest in me is a little jumpy and over-the-top.

STILL. Violent people need reform much more than they need to be “called out online” or whacked in the big house. Yes, they are, in many cases, “bad” people. But, if you think that a moral injunction by the state or a well-meaning advocacy group is going to stop them, you’re deluded. If we focus on an individual victim’s juridical victory—and I do not consider incarceration a victory for anyone, but evidence of a great failure shared by us all—rather than the objective conditions that produce acts of violence, we’re fucked.

Well, we are fucked, but that’s another story.

In short, I just wanted to use this opportunity to (a) elaborate on my current favourite theme of “personal stories have become politically useless” (this doesn’t mean you shouldn’t tell them) and (b) ask my press colleagues not to bother contacting me UNLESS they want to receive a very rude note with “OFF THE FUCKING RECORD” written at the bottom and the top.

It is, of course, pointless for me to tell any member of the press to desist in their focus on more glamorous versions of the everyday shit people deal with, such as being stalked. These journalists have convinced themselves that this reporting is a democratising act to which real people can relate. I happen to believe that it is a falsely democratising act that makes people who are hurting feel even more maligned when they compare their own violent drudgery to narrativised celebrity pain.

Finally. To anyone who has had their life fucked up by any kind of violence, notwithstanding my claim that my experience is not your experience, I feel very keenly for you. I understand just a little of your horror and confusion. I believe that you have been very badly hurt. It is quite possible that you will hurt less if you seek justice, either of a state administered or self-administered kind. Whatever gets you, individually, through.

What is not going to get us collectively through anything, though, is the flat and self-serving media approach to “justice”.  Newsworthy trauma is, a great deal of the time, not socially useful. In fact, it’s destructive to everyone but the paid providers of news.

 

 

3 comments for “No News

  1. valerie
    June 4, 2016 at 1:32 am

    Keep being strong

  2. Cheree
    June 8, 2016 at 10:29 am

    “The way to stop violent intrusion into our lives by individuals is not by sanctioning violent intrusion into our lives by the state.”

    Yes. Perfect. I’m getting that put on a t-shirt. Could probably sell it, make a few dollars.

    I actually think this personal story, as told by you, is still politically useful.

  3. erin
    June 28, 2016 at 2:58 am

    holy hell this is spot on.

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