On the subject of withdrawal from the EU, there are other issues besides UKIP’s lamentable performance to focus upon, so it will be a relief to move on to other matters. But before I do, there are a couple of things that need to be addressed here.
Firstly, a response to the comments on Raedwald’s blog following the recent argument between Richard, me and a couple of UKIP loyalists.
To describe me as an intellect is something of an insult to those people who really are. The criticisms of UKIP on this blog are not fuelled by jealousy and there is no denigration of personalities. What I’ve been doing is criticising UKIP for what I see as fundamental failures, caused in large part by the approach dictated by Nigel Farage. If it is denigration to point out the failures, missed opportunities and questionable direction of Farage, or the boorish and patronising mentality of Bloom, then fair enough. But this isn’t personal, this is criticism of terrible leadership. I don’t agree that I’ve been egotistical. These criticisms stem from frustration and disappointment at the way the Eurosceptic agenda is being undermined by a catastropically bad approach.
Further, to suggest as ‘Anthem’ does that my aim or that of Richard is to take over leadership of the cause is ridiculous. We have both offered friendly advice, help and support to UKIP over the years. It has been rebuffed because if the idea doesn’t originate within the armchair cabinet at UKIP HQ then it is considered a threat to Farage’s position. I could not care less who leads the cause, my only concern is how they lead it. But, in order to prop up Farage, the truth of the matter must be replaced with accusations of jealousy, self interest and personal ambition against the critics.
Then there is the need to reply to this from ‘Carnwennan’
Richard’s chief issue with UKIP seems to be that they have failed to explain to the public just how difficult it would be to leave the EU. A problem to which only he has a fully thought through plan.
Surely for UKIP to highlight these technical hurdles would be hugely counter productive. Far from a priority… unless you like that kind of thing, which only RN and AM do.
If you are an intellectual hammer, every problem looks like a nail, even those that no one else can see.
This again shows the point has been missed. It is not a complex, technical argument for UKIP to explain that getting out of the EU is easy, but becomes difficult when starting to unpick all those treaties and regulations we have been signed up to over many years. It is not complext to explain that before leaving we need to start negotiating what relationship we will have with the EU and secure continued access to the single market to protect UK commerical and consumer interests. It is not rocket science to have the details in your back pocket so, when challenged by the likes of Open Europe and the CBI, you can go into more detail to give confidence to the business community that leaving the EU does not mean losing 3 million jobs or huge tariffs on our goods, while rebutting the politically motivated ‘economic arguments’ of the Europhiles.
Far from being counter productive, having a thought through plan would give reassurance to voters that UKIP is a safe pair of hands that has done its homework, knows how to achieve its stated goals and provides a genuine alternative to the lying and self interested mainstream parties. So why are Farage and UKIP so dead set against it? Decide for yourself.
Secondly, a criticism that has been directed at Richard and me is that we are outside the tent pissing in and should be inside pissing out. We’ve tried that. So have a good number of other sound, qualified and talented people who could have helped UKIP move things forward substantially – but instead have been picked off and driven from the party in case they become more popular than Farage.
When we have cited the lack of a plan or question marks about UKIP’s position, some of the tribal ‘UKIP can do no wrong’ crowd argue there is a plan and UKIP’s position is very clear.
They argue the media don’t give UKIP space to share the details, but go silent when we point out UKIP’s own communications channels, (website and magazine) do not reveal this information! Most recently this group has featured Roger ‘Tallbloke’ Tattersall. When we ask what the plan is or challenge the lack of position, they try to tackle the claim but always fall well short as reality defeats them. This exchange on Twitter is a classic example. It seems there is a UKIP position, but a UKIP candidate is not allowed or willing to speak about it and we as potential voters are not allowed to know about it:
It is a bizarre approach to reassuring voters, dangling a ‘neat’ position but then not detailing it when asked. The ‘I know the plan and think it’s neat so trust me that all is good and run along’ doesn’t really cut it. So does this mean UKIP has a secret position on EU withdrawal? It’s all a bit silly.
Anyway, I hope this post clears up some misconceptions for those who have been reading in large numbers but have kept their thoughts to themselves.