Commenter of the week


Here at Whaleoil, we have a lot of talented people making comments on our posts all of the time.

So, we have decided to shine a light on the person we think has most deserved an accolade in the last 7 days.

Please note this is not about just one comment. We are looking for more than that. We are looking for someone who regularly contributes constructively to our forum and to the messages we are trying to send.

As a Whaleoil writer, sometimes, it is impossible to keep up. The pace of change, the number of things that happen each week is just incredible. This week, we learned that we have to give residency to a Czech drug dealer who has already been granted residency before but under a false name. We learned that Kiwibuild, rather than provide housing for the families who have been ‘locked out’ of the market, is actually designed for upwardly mobile young couples who can afford to buy houses without any government help. In the meantime, letting fees have been abolished, banks are going to require depositors to pay insurance for the banks to look after their money, and Jacinda posed as a bag lady next to the Duke and Duchess of Sussex.? Oh, and she made tea for the mayor of Wellington. Maybe the term ‘char’ lady would have been more appropriate.

This week, we are doing another Commenter of the Week special.

We tend not to consider writers, moderators or photoshoppers as possible contenders for this award, although, when you think about it, there is no reason for that. I guess we don’t want to look like a bunch of sycophants living in an echo chamber. This week, however, someone had a special birthday, and we thought it might be a good opportunity to give him a bit of recognition on the blog too.

This week, our Commenter of the week is…


Happy 50th birthday, Cameron Slater.

Cam is a writer, a moderator and a commenter on what is, after all, his own blog. Sometimes, he doesn’t comment much at all, and sometimes, he comments a lot. Generally, it will depend on whether he has something of value to say, or possibly whether he has inside knowledge into certain events. He knows that it is impossible for him to just come out and tell things the way they are, but he often gives significant hints, so long as you are prepared to read between the lines. Jacinda could learn a thing or two from him.

He also doesn’t always get it right, and he is always prepared to admit when he has got it wrong.

The thing about Cam is that you don’t have to agree with him. He doesn’t expect that. What he does expect is for commenters to think things through and comment accordingly. These are big issues that we discuss on this blog, and he expects everyone to consider them appropriately.

Readers know that Whaleoil towers over all other political blogs by being far and away the largest blog in the country, and when you have created something as amazing as that, you want it to be treated with respect. You may not always like what he says, but you have to treat it with the esteem it deserves, or even demands.

Below are some of the comments that Cam has made in the comment section in the last few weeks as well as one from quite a few months ago.

From: Despicable text sent to Jami-Lee Ross by female MP:

So a hatchet job, against all medical advice ,that nearly killed someone…is hot air? Good to know.

The point is there was no wrong doing. JLR didn’t even leak the expenses. So why the hatchet job…and now the cover up.

From: Of course they won?t use the waka jumping law, they?d confirm what a bunch of hypocrites they really are

It is you who is stupid, because the doctor did speak with them, with the permission of JLR. I just love the armchair commenters not in full command of the facts arguing with those of us who are.

This is the frustrating thing sometimes. Cam is right up there, directly involved, and the rest of us are merely speculating. He tries to throw out some clues as to what is really going on, but it is not always easy to get the full picture. Sometimes, it is a case of ‘join the dots’, but not all the dots are easy to find. I know. I’ve done it too.

Nige has this thing about “paying attention”. If you come here for insights then you need to “pay attention”? by which he means that you need to read all the comments and in particular look to the ones that Cam responds to, and also look for the little clues and tidbits of information that he reveals.

From: Like nothing ever seen before:

Excuse me? I have not taken the side of Ross. I think he is a sneaky weasel and have said so. He was the leaker, he rightly should have been booted from caucus. He is not perfect, ahs shown an extremely nasty side, but no one else is pure either and those pointing fingers like Bennett and Bridges aren’t pure at all.

The only agenda I have is to remove corruption from political parties. I warned you all national wasn’t perfect. You all ignored me, and now you are going to find out that Saint John and Saint Bill…weren’t. That what they did to me is being to done to others. It is truth time and it is going to be unpleasant.

From : Karl du Fresne destroys Simon Wilson?s heroic defence of Phil Goff?s attack on free speech:

There is always one idiot who thinks moderation is an affront to free speech. It isn’t. This is my house and everyone here who comments is a guest. We have some house rules, which include no swearing etc. If you abide bvy the rules you can say what you like so long as you don’t break the rules or break the law like defamation or inciting violence.

I like polite conversation to occur. That said, if you don’t like the house rules and you persistently break them then you can go outside of here and shout all you like. We don’t have to listen to it inside our house. I am not banning you, removing your rights, YOU did that by breaking the rules. Believe me I know more about where the edge or line is when it comes to breaking rules.

Now, you find Stefan and Lauren loathsome do you? Have you bothered to actually read and listen to what they’ve had to say, because I suggest that you haven’t and are simply relying on fake news branding them as white supremacist and racist.

We do match what they say, we do match our deeds with moderation, the fact you are here commenting suggests it doesn’t it.

Nobody particularly liked the moderation rules when they first came in. Although it was nice to see the end of a lot of four letter words, it felt restricting, and even Cam himself wasn’t totally sure about it. Now, a few years on, these rules have shown their true value. As a writer, I feel very comfortable knowing I’m not going to be insulted or trolled for my opinion. I’ve had some interesting and sometimes heated discussions with commenters over my time, but nothing ever got out of hand, thanks to the moderation rules. You only have to visit a few other blogs to see the difference, although I have noticed that many other blogs have followed Whaleoil’s lead and are not the foul places they used to be. Moderation rulz. OK.

And here is a comment that shows that Whaleoil can be a very nice place indeed. This was in response to a readers guest post that revealed her difficult situation. She got lots of help from Whaleoil people as a result.


I want to thank all those wonderful readers who have contacted me regarding our Guest Poster and her predicament. It is truly wonderful to see a community spring into action.

Our Guest Poster is very humbled by the response and has sent me a couple of emails.

This is one:

“It really demonstrates the power of the community and how important they are. It also is a good example of how different our communities are nowadays to that of the past when it used to be your neighbours. Now we have other links, but just as important. So many thanks. I know you understand the importance of what you and your friends are doing. And it stops one feeling so alone and helpless.”

Well done team. Thank you so much for helping a community member in need. If you can still help just send me an email with HELP in the subject line and I will pass on details to you privately.

So thank you Cam for all your very hard work in giving us a forum to express our views and share ideas with like-minded people and thank you for not creating an echo chamber. So long as Whaleoil exists, free speech is not dead… although we have a fight on our hands sometimes to keep free speech going.

And Technomage has designed a special certificate for you too.


Thank you, Cam, for sharing your life with us. We are privileged to be a part of the community you have built.?People come and people go but in the end, Cam will still be here. He has always said that.?Other blogs try and copy Whaleoil? but fall flat.

We know they don’t come close. How could they? There is only one Cameron Slater.


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