Whaleoil blogger Cameron Slater has described Prime
Minister John Key's former press secretary Jason Ede as
"squeamish'' and "gutless'' for not fronting up to the media
and talking about their relationship.
Mr Slater said Mr Ede should respond to accusations levelled
against him in Nicky Hager's book Dirty Politics.
Mr Ede's role in John Key's office has come under scrutiny
following the publication of the book which was written using
years of Mr Slater's communications obtained by a hacker.
He is accused of joining Mr Slater in accessing the Labour
Party website when security was vulnerable and obtaining
private information. He is also accused of feeding
information to Mr Slater's Whaleoil blog to attack political
Mr Ede - who now works as a National Party staff member - has
gone to ground since publication of the book while Mr Key has
attempted to explain his actions as normal political
Mr Slater said his contact with Mr Ede was normal politics,
including the receipt of press releases.
"You are all claiming there is this vast conspiracy - it
simply doesn't exist. That Jason Ede is some sort of
ringmaster? In my view, Jason Ede is squeamish, and gutless.
"And the fact he has gone to ground and hiding and not
speaking to anybody suggests that's true.
"My advice is front-foot everything. My advice is speak and
tell your story. If you don't tell your story, everyone else
is telling your story with their narrative.''
Mr Slater said his style of politics differed from many
"I play politics like Fijians play rugby. My role is smashing
your face into the ground.
"Politics is a nasty despicable game and its played by nasty
despicable people. Where's the surprise in this?
"There's a lot of people want to be involved in politics but
there are not very many people who want to say and do things.
The vast majority of people are squeamish.
"The squeamish people are gutless, they run for the hills,
they don't speak to the media. And you have to question that
- look at all the people who are running and hiding and not
talking where I'm the one speaking to the media. If it all
comes down to me I'm prepared to front.''
Mr Slater dismissed evidence released by the hacker which
aimed to prove contact between the blogger and Mr Ede on
issues Mr Slater had denied discussing.
"That's a screen-shot from the hacker ... I don't know if
he's edited that or not.
"When people ask me who are my sources. I'm not going to . .
. . . . . tell them who my sources are.
Mr Slater also defended asking an ex-prostitute from
information about politicians. He said they were "all a bunch
of sanctimonious pricks who claim to be innocent who claim to
be innocent in all respects and above reproach. I've been
around politics for a long long time and I know that's
He said there was "hypocrisy and sanctimony'' from those on
the political left when he had helped Labour supporters with
"It's come out in Nicky Hager's book I'm a nasty bastard but
there's in fact a lot of people I help that I do off the
record in the background for nothing.''
Mr Slater said his blog was no different from blogs on the
left - a comment the Prime Minister has also made.
"There's of plenty vicious posts that are written on left
wing blogs,'' Mr Slater said.