The Wanganui businessman behind a political blog has been revealed in Nicky Hager's controversial Dirty Politics book.

The book, which has caused a storm since its release last week, focuses on the exploits of foul-mouthed right-wing blogger Cameron Slater.

And it names Wanganui National Party member Tony Stuart as the man behind the Keeping Stock political blog.

When contacted by the Chronicle yesterday, Mr Stuart confirmed it was true. Keeping Stock is a right-wing blog and Mr Stuart is also frequently on Twitter under the same name.


He was named in the New Zealand Herald's list of tweeters to follow throughout the election.

However since then, Mr Stuart has deactivated his @Inventory2 Twitter account.

Keeping Stock's tagline is "an eclectic mix of some of the finer things in life - politics, sport, music, humour and God", and Mr Stuart has been writing the blog for seven years, as a hobby. He said he was considering its future in the wake of the Dirty Politics furore. Until Hager's book, the name behind the blog had been anonymous, which Mr Stuart said was for personal reasons.

There was no suggestion of any wrongdoing on Keeping Stock's behalf and Mr Stuart said he didn't engage with politicians to get information for his blog.

Keeping Stock's brief mention in Dirty Politics comes on page 50 after Cameron Slater posted the name and contact details of public servant Simon Pleasants on his Whale Oil blog. Mr Stuart wrote two comments under that post which read "Superb work Cam!" and "I wonder if Mr Pleasants will get a less-than-pleasant invitation to have a wee chat with his boss sometime this morning ... "

The Whale Oil blog accused Mr Pleasants of working on behalf of the Labour Party while a public servant.

Mr Stuart said he would look at the future of the blog in the coming weeks.

"When someone like David Farrar (Kiwiblog) is looking to make some pretty significant changes, that can't be overlooked," he told the Chronicle.


Mr Farrar announced a raft of changes to his blog, following the release of Dirty Politics, including applying to join the Online Media Standards Authority.

Mr Stuart said he would move away from "gotcha politics" to "focus on the achievements of the current National-led Government".

"I think this has probably provided a really good opportunity for all political parties to look at how they disseminate information," he said.

He blogged: "After the election, who knows? We've already hinted that we were considering a sabbatical, given Keeping Stock has just celebrated its seventh birthday."

Speaking about an event he had been to, Mr Stuart wrote: "Both the local MP Chester Borrows and his challenger Hamish McDouall were there, but there were no dirty politics whatsoever; both are decent, gracious men, who want to serve their community. There's a message there, upon which we shall ponder over the next few days."