Whale Oil dirty and inconsistent

Missy posted:

Whaleoil have a post about the call from the HRC for the Govt to apologise about Child Abuse in State Care, supported by Jacinda Ardern. What caught my attention is the headline: Socialist Cindy, the childless champion of children

I am sorry, but her being childless should be irrelevant, I think that is just nasty to say that about her. There was a similar (sort of) situation here during the Conservative Party leadership election when it seemed one of the candidates kept prefacing every comment with ‘as a mother I….’, this was a direct dig at Theresa May who had no children, and the inference is that people with no children have no empathy – Cameron Slater is using the same tactic here. Pete tries to justify it, but in my view it is still shoddy on their part, and stigmatising Jacinda for not being a mother, and detracting from the point of the article – whether you agree or not with it.

I agree that having a dig at someone for being childless is nasty. perhaps this is some of the ‘more dirty’ that Slater has been talking about doing this year.

As Missy says, Pete Belt tries to defend the indefensible.

Spambot42: How is Cindy being childless relevant to the content of the article and the entirely relevant point you made about it…?

Pete Belt: She is the shadow minister for children. If they appointed a chinese person as minister of maori affairs, that would be notable. So, so is a childless woman being a children’s advocate.

BayPomNZ: She has been a child at some point in time so perhaps your analogy isn’t quite correct. I agree with spambot42 that being childless is completely irrelevant to ifnshed do a good job or not.

Pete Belt: It remains a factual statement. It is up to the reader to decide if it is relevant. As a parent, knowing what I thought about parenting and children before I became a parent, and what I know now, I feel confident in saying that a childless person can no understand what it is like to to have children and how their needs, thoughts and lives are experienced.

It may be a factual statement but it’s both nasty and stupid.

It’s ridiculous to suggest that any spokesperson role in politics is only credible if the person has been a mother, been a general, been a policeman, been a child in a sole parent family, been a property investor, been a tax evader etc etc.

Truby King founded Plunket and did a lot to teach mothers domestic hygiene and childcare, but he had never been a mother. That doesn’t negate what he achieved in reducing infant mortality. He also improved nutrition at the Seacliff psychiatric hospital, but I’m not aware of him having been a mental patient.

The Whale Oil headline is a dirty dig at Ardern, typical of Slater’s approach to politics. Talking of which, Slater has never been an MP, by Belt’s standards that means Slater being a political advocate is something worthy of taunting and degrading.

This just highlights the fact that Whale Oil is largely a political activist blog, and having never been a real journalist his attempts to portray his blog as an alternate new media should be rubbished by Belt, if he was to be consistent.

Leave a comment


  1. Alan Wilkinson

     /  14th February 2017

    Is being childless irrelevant? I’m not sure. I think it can have deep implications and impacts. That’s exactly why it is used as a political weapon.

    Is that unfair? Certainly. But so is life. Does it tell more about the accuser than the accused? Absolutely. The accuser is ruthless and unfair. The accused may or may not be impacted in a variety of ways but that is unknowable simply from the fact of childlessness.

  2. artcroft

     /  14th February 2017

    Being a parent doesn’t qualify you to be an advocate for all children. Many parents are quite indifferent to other children and, in a small number of cases, actually hostile.

    • Pickled Possum

       /  14th February 2017

      Yes Art that is true and doesn’t the black fish know about Empathy … probable not.
      He doesn’t display that emotion. Sympathy for ME and ya dosh, hehe
      He seems to be a free lance muck raka, with signs of acute elitism imo
      Of course he is going to fire shots over Jacinda bow .. she is Real and Honest and her kaupapa is far from underhanded. Any thing he has to say on any political party IMV is a waste of 2mins skim over.
      Besides that; her ‘reason ‘ for being childless maybe medical spiritual and is her own business. I find childless people on the whole to be well centred.
      Could the same be said about the black fish who dances with the black dog.

  3. duperez

     /  14th February 2017

    A member of Parliament backs a call for there to be an inquiry into historical abuse claims of children in state care.

    The Belt comments are stupid, and in trying to raise some sort of intellectual defence against the stupidity comes up with something even more bereft.

    Slater used the story in a lowlife scummy way to make some political point.

    I look forward to Belt pontificating about Parliamentarians not legislating about (or even casting opinions about) prisons unless they’ve been a prisoner.

  4. Its not irrelevant that childless people know less about children than families with children. I agree with Pete Belt.
    “”It remains a factual statement. It is up to the reader to decide if it is relevant. As a parent, knowing what I thought about parenting and children before I became a parent, and what I know now, I feel confident in saying that a childless person can no understand what it is like to to have children and how their needs, thoughts and lives are experienced””

    • duperez

       /  14th February 2017

      Is it relevant for a Member of Parliament to think or know that it’s important to look into historical abuse claims of children in state care?

      • High Flying Duck

         /  14th February 2017

        I think you’re both pretty much on the money. In the same way politicians who have never run a business should not be controlling the regulations small business must operate under, there is definitely an advantage in knowing about parenting first hand when dealing with child and family issues – as the job ads say, “Experience preferred but not necessary”.

        The fact bad parents exist is also a bit specious in arguing the point. We would assume such parents would be counted out of consideration for ministerial positions

        In the case of the WO story though the argument is a non-sequitur as the issue isn’t children per se so much as systemic abuse.

        I think any reasonable person can take a position on this without having their child status factored in.

    • Missy

       /  15th February 2017

      What an arrogant comment. Are you saying anyone who works in the area of child advocacy should have children? Teachers? Doctors? Nurses? Social Workers? Child Psychologists?

      Should it be a case of Midwives can only be those who have given birth? The Minister of Defence should have served in the military? The Minister of Police should have been in the Police?

      But lets say you are right, and only people with children should be able to advocate for children. So, according to you the parents of the Kahui twins, Nia Glassie’s mother, the comedian who molested his 3yo daughter are all more qualified – and have more right – than Jacinda Ardern to speak on behalf of children.

      • Pickled Possum

         /  15th February 2017

        Bloody Marvelous korero there Missy. Send that message home.
        Just think what could have happened if Professor Herbert Green had to have a cervix before he destined all those women to the scrap heap and imagine if Minister of Health Micheal Bassett had to have woman parts before he instigated the Cartwright saga.

        Men changing womens lives one body part at a time. WO so irrelevant today.

  5. patupaiarehe

     /  14th February 2017

    So she doesn’t have kids. Big deal. Although I had an entirely different idea of what being a parent mean before I ‘got one past the goalie’, I still understood how a child shouldn’t be treated. If a representative listens to the views of those more experienced than them, and takes them on board, then they are doing their job.

  6. Meh…. the sobriquet thrown around are part and parcel of the game. And resort to the tired old chestnut “Dirty Politics” when referring to Mr Slater is kind of redundant.

    And by the by, how is “childless” any less nasty than “rich prick” which is regularly thrown back the other way?

    Again … Meh

    • patupaiarehe

       /  14th February 2017

      Both are nasty, Dave, and both speak more of the accuser, than the accused.

  7. Dirty? Inconsistent? …. Who? ….. Whale Oil …!?

    We’ve all been children … and been parented …

    Is a male fiction writer allowed to create female characters?
    A Pakeha writer allowed to create Maori …? Or vice-versa?

    • patupaiarehe

       /  14th February 2017

      It’s the internet PZ. Create whatever you want, in as few words as possible. PLEASE! 😀

  8. Jeeves

     /  15th February 2017

    Sure he’s childless himself.


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