Invercargill troughers return from China empty handed

It was bizarre that Invercargill City Council had to send three troughers all the way to China to buy Christmas lights in the first place.

They clearly have not heard of AliExpress.

Nonetheless, they went…and came back empty handed.

Three Invercargill City Council staff who went to China to purchase Christmas lights failed to decide what lights they wanted.

The controversial trip, which cost ratepayers more than $21,000, resulted in elected councillors sparking up about the lighting issue at a full council meeting on Tuesday.

Some were in favour of the trip and some weren’t.

Council chief executive Richard King said last week four staff had gone to Invercargill’s sister city, Suqian, with three on the trip to purchase replacement Christmas lights for the CBD.

However, a report to Tuesday’s council meeting by finance director Dean Johnston revealed they had not bought any lights while in China.   Read more »

Welcome to the no fly list

Some people are just jerks.

Like this prick who didn’t want to be wished a Merry Christmas.

Bah, humbug!

A passenger was tossed off a plane at La Guardia Airport on Tuesday after flipping out — because airline workers wished him a merry Christmas.

The man was waiting to board American Airlines Flight 1140 to Dallas when a cheerful gate agent began welcoming everyone with the Yuletide greeting while checking boarding passes.

The grumpy passenger, who appeared to be traveling alone, barked at the woman, “You shouldn’t say that because not everyone celebrates Christmas.”

The agent replied, “Well, what should I say then?”   Read more »

A touching email from a reader

This morning I received this email.

Dear Cam

Before responding privately to your Christmas Message, I wanted to think seriously on the message itself and the import of your experience in Jerusalem’s Church of the Holy Sepulchre.

Nearly seventy-five years ago, I learned three undeniable Truths:-

1. There are no atheists in a fox-hole

2. No matter how deep you dig the hole, if it has your name on it, it will find you

3. Do not worry.  If it is going to happen, it will happen.  Worrying will not change that.

Sometimes, in the heat of battle, one figure emerges, standing tall above his fellows, who changes the course of the events of the moment.  He is a Hero.  In today’s often hostile political and social environment, you are that hero, standing taller than the rest and for that, I salute you.     Read more »

The Queen’s Christmas Message

In this year’s Christmas Broadcast, commonly known as ‘The Queen’s Speech’, Her Majesty recalls the Christmas truce of 1914 as she speaks of reconciliation and forgiveness.

Face of the day


Alice Wylie

Hi Cam
Merry Christmas to you and the team at Whaleoil.

A follow up from your post 20 November about my neighbour Alice Wylie.
We visited shortly after the incident and I showed her the post on my Ipad as she is not Internet connected.
She was ‘tickled pink’ with the write up and also the comments.
I got the post made into a Christmas card.
Here is a photo with Alice holding her ‘hard copy’ of your post.
SB may consider her for a face of the day?
I can report that Alice has made a stunning recovery and has been overwhelmed with the community support.
Have a good break.


I just want to report that we all here at Whaleoil were grinning from ear to ear when we received the above e-mail.

What a lovely photo.


A classic Christmas TV moment

Photo Of The Day

Photo: Per-Erik Jaderberg/AFP/Getty Images The giant goat,before and after it was set on fire in 2004, is made of straw, weighs over 3 tons and is over forty feet tall. At this time of year, the residents of Gävle, Sweden have one big question on their minds: Will the goat burn?

Photo: Per-Erik Jaderberg/AFP/Getty Images
The giant goat,before and after it was set on fire in 2004, is made of straw, weighs over 3 tons and is over forty feet tall. At this time of year, the residents of Gävle, Sweden have one big question on their minds: Will the goat burn?


If there is one thing you don’t want to be in Sweden during Christmas, it’s a Yule Goat Read more »

Merry Christmas – My Christmas Message

Whale Oil Blogger Cameron Slater Portrait Session

Last night Pete joked that I should do a Christmas message for all the readers and commenters.

It nagged away at me, damn you Pete…

But seriously folks I hope you have a very Merry Christmas.

It has been a pretty tough year, It started really with a criminal act, the take down of the server and the hacks of my emails and social media.

Little did I know at the time what the left-wing had planned and executed.

It all unfolded as I was flying from Fiji to Seoul and when I landed at Incheon airport my phone went nuts.

I was overnighting there on my way to Israel via Paris. I put in place a plan and spoke with my friends and planned our response. I got 3 hours sleep and the next morning I was on a plane to Paris.

Can you imagine the stress I was under?

I didn’t have all the information, I had a deluge of emails and messages, plus there was a campaign underway to try and rack up my phone bills by people calling me and hanging up…there were literally hundreds of those.

Sitting on the plane to Paris was excruciating, totally out of contact, worrying about my friends who were under attack as well, and especially worrying about my family under siege by scumbag journalists doorstepping my wife and kids.

Same with the flight into Tel Aviv from Paris.

It was a rolling storm and I was half a world away and 9 hours behind in  a very strange land.

The next night there I was standing on a balcony in Tel Aviv with the city behind me talking on breakfast TV in New Zealand while it was midnight in Israel.    Read more »

Why we actually celebrate Christmas on the 25th of December will shock you

Have you always assumed that Christmas was celebrated on Jesus’ birthday?

Perhaps you know that a Pagan festival on the 25th was changed to a Christmas festival in order to help convert Pagans to Christianity?

I was aware that it used to be a Pagan festival, but what that festival involved and how we have kept many of its nasty traditions I did not know.

Prepare to be shocked and educated.

II.     How Did Christmas Come to Be Celebrated on December 25?

A.    Roman pagans first introduced the holiday of Saturnalia, a week long period of lawlessness celebrated between December 17-25.  During this period, Roman courts were closed, and Roman law dictated that no one could be punished for damaging property or injuring people during the week long celebration.  The festival began when Roman authorities chose “an enemy of the Roman people” to represent the “Lord of Misrule.”  Each Roman community selected a victim whom they forced to indulge in food and other physical pleasures throughout the week.  At the festival’s conclusion, December 25th, Roman authorities believed they were destroying the forces of darkness by brutally murdering this innocent man or woman.

B.    The ancient Greek writer poet and historian Lucian (in his dialogue entitled Saturnalia) describes the festival’s observance in his time.  In addition to human sacrifice, he mentions these customs: widespread intoxication; going from house to house while singing naked; rape and other sexual license; and consuming human-shaped biscuits (still produced in some English and most German bakeries during the Christmas season).

I don’t know about you but I don’t think I will ever look at a gingerbread man in quite the same way that I used to.

A gingerbread family -photo

A gingerbread family

C.    In the 4th century CE, Christianity imported the Saturnalia festival hoping to take the pagan masses in with it.  Christian leaders succeeded in converting to Christianity large numbers of pagans by promising them that they could continue to celebrate the Saturnalia as Christians.

D.    The problem was that there was nothing intrinsically Christian about Saturnalia. To remedy this, these Christian leaders named Saturnalia’s concluding day, December 25th, to be Jesus’ birthday.

E.      Christians had little success, however, refining the practices of Saturnalia.  As Stephen Nissenbaum, professor history at the University of Massachussetts, Amherst, writes, “In return for ensuring massive observance of the anniversary of the Savior’s birth by assigning it to this resonant date, the Church for its part tacitly agreed to allow the holiday to be celebrated more or less the way it had always been.”  The earliest Christmas holidays were celebrated by drinking, sexual indulgence, singing naked in the streets (a precursor of modern caroling), etc.

Drunk Santa -photo

Drunk Santa photo

Read more »

Face of the day




O Come All Ye Faithful
Joyful and triumphant,
O come ye, O come ye to Bethlehem.
Come and behold Him,
Born the King of Angels;
O come, let us adore Him,
O come, let us adore Him,
O come, let us adore Him,
Christ the Lord.

O Sing, choirs of angels,
Sing in exultation,
Sing all that hear in heaven God’s holy word.
Give to our Father glory in the Highest;
O come, let us adore Him,
O come, let us adore Him,
O come, let us adore Him,
Christ the Lord.

All Hail! Lord, we greet Thee,
Born this happy morning,
O Jesus! for evermore be Thy name adored.
Word of the Father, now in flesh appearing;
O come, let us adore Him,
O come, let us adore Him,
O come, let us adore Him,
Christ the Lord.