Tags: melbourne cbd

25 Nov 2008, Comments (9)

White Ribbon Day

Author: Helen

…AKA international day for the elimination of violence against women.

Working in the Melbourne CBD, I thought I’d see white ribbon sellers at the station today, but didn’t. Neither did I see a white ribbon being worn by anyone, anywhere, for the whole of my working day. Not one. While blog and forum commenters whined that women were as usual hogging all the attention and where is the man-love?, I saw plenty of mos for Movember (a cause I thoroughly support, BTW.)

Being a feminist blogger is tiring. Along comes a feminist “day” or a news item, and out come all the tired old antifeminist tropes again. Even on blogs with a (mostly) articulate and educated readership, we get threads like this and this and this. It gets so exhausting refuting the same old stuff.

This is mildly interesting: a female antifeminist, who is vigorously blaming the victims, lets slip that her own mother was subject to domestic violence and she herself only just escaped. It’s an incomplete but fascinating glimpse into the pathology of how this behaviour continues. Like any disease, family violence doesn’t necessarily manifest itself in every individual affected, but it has carriers.

That’s how you get sucked into life-wasting hours trying to do the impossible. And it makes me tired.

I liked this article by Irfan Yusuf of Planet Irf a lot, as well as this piece by Andrew O’Keeffe, the Australian chairman of the White Ribbon Foundation and this succinct comment from Tigtog on the LP thread.

Oh, and this post from a most wonderful US blog, the Mugwump Chronicles.

“I just wanted to see how you were doing,” Melinda said. “It’s still as crazy as ever around here.”
Melinda, you’re 20 years old now, why don’t you get out?”
“As soon as Sammy is out of the house I can go.”
“How old is she now?” I asked.
“She’s 10. The second she turns 16 we’re gone.”
Melinda’s voice was dreamy. “I can make it that long. I have to take care of her.”
It was probably an hour after we had said our good-byes that the full impact of our conversation hit me. My knees grew weak and I had to sit for a minute, my mind was racing. Everything fell into place with a bang. I saw my childhood friend and riding buddy with a terrible clarity.

13 Sep 2007, Comments Off on This is a local post for local people. There’s nothing for you here!

This is a local post for local people. There’s nothing for you here!

Author: Helen

Image from www.thejim.iofm.net/strangers.html

Bouncing off Barista’s post about the by-election in his electorate, Melbourne Ports: we have one next weekend too, in Williamstown. We’re the electorate which used to belong to Bracksy before his resignation.

Williamstown is a safe Labor seat, a very safe seat, and there’s no Liberal candidate standing. (This isn’t the seat young Hamish got the boot from – this is State, he was feral. Sorry, Federal.) The Labor candidate is Wade Noonan of the Transport Workers Union, who has been parachuted in by Labor. This is a slap in the face to the people who live in the electorate – they have been trying to get trucks (monster B-doubles, container trucks and tankers) to keep out of the residential areas for years now.

I was never going to vote Labor anyway. They’ve been shitting me mightily lately; Tim Pallas’ arrogant refusal to even consider converting St Kilda road to allow for more bicycle lanes; Lynne Kosky’s handling of the decaying public transport infrastructure, and the government’s intention not to take back the public transport system, but instead stay with the discredited Connex corporation; the murky relationship between Labor, the CFMEU and the loggers and woodchippers; the continual privileging of roads and freeways over public transport, and Brumby, as the Murdochistas excitingly put it, crushing the proposed car-free day in the Melbourne CBD. They’re Liberal Lite, just like their federal counterparts. Oh, yes – did I mention their dirt campaign against the Green candidates?

We’ve received four. bloody. letters. each from Labor at our house – one each, so that’s eight – supposedly from the premier John Brumby, but authorisedintinylittlelettersatthebottom from S. Newnham of 360 King st. West Melbourne. Four each! Talk about overkill. (Who’s paying for it?). Barista has also received a letter from these tree-killers purporting to be from Sue Loukomitis, claiming that the Greens want to “close down” MacRobertson High school, a selective secondary school nearby. Strangely enough, that’s also authorisedintinylittlelettersatthebottom by S. Newnham, also of 360 King St. West Melbourne.

A few weeks ago I came across a grubby little website. It’s an astroturf site which is made to look like some kind of grass roots radical’s homemade effort, but which in fact is the work of – you guessed it – authorisedintinylittlelettersatthebottom by S. Newnham, of 360 King st. (If you’re incensed by this nasty little piece of work, don’t bother clicking on Comments – it’s a shell of a “blog”. Comments are disabled. Of course.) Greens-Liberal-deal.com.au (hmm, that’ll catch on with the yoof all right) is linked to some local batshit crazies via this site.

Barista sez:

[Newnham] is the State Secretary of the Australian Labor Party, an organisation that seems temporarily to have lost both its name and logo.

That nice Greg Combet, now standing for federal parliament after being an ACTU hero, sent me a letter today as well, endorsing the local ALP candidate. The slightly eccentric layout of that letter is identical to this one. It was also authorised by Mr Newnham, who still can’t find a logo. The Combet letter is folksy and nice, with his photo on it, and its clear what he wants and where he comes from. It contains this sentence:

“The commitment to decency and justice is what defines a good society.”

Well put, comrade. Do you think you could maybe find these sleazebags who sent me that smeary letter and tell them to fuck off where they came from, so I can vote for the ALP now and in the federal election without feeling sick?

‘Fraid I can’t.

There’s more about the dirt campaign here.