Time spent on this UKIP infighting is time not spent fighting for UK independence

UKIP is in a state of civil war in Scotland.

A parachuted ‘Friend of Farage’ candidate, resignations, sackings, dissolution of the party’s Scottish committee, internal party intrigues, accusations of control freakery, a party spokesman so detached from events he can’t offer comment.  It’s political self destruction driven by egos, vested interests and patronage running amok.

This underlines the point made on this blog several times that relying on a political party, to drive the campaign for Brexit and independence for Britain, is a mistake.  Party management and maintenance uses up energy and focus and the time spent by UKIP as Farage tries to impose his control on the party in Scotland is time not spent on the pressing issue.

What is even more frustrating is that this is all about who UKIP sends to Brussels as an MEP if they secure sufficient votes in Scotland.  It is ultimately meaningless to the Brexit campaign, but means a lot to the likes of David Coburn who is top of the UKIP candidate list, and would climb aboard the Brussels gravy train and by the end of the next European Parliament would have received well over £1m in pay, expenses and perks.  That is a pretty generous thank you from Farage for Coburn’s loyalty – albeit a thank you paid out of our tax pounds.

This latest internal spat in UKIP harms the whole Brexit cause.   Those of us who want the UK to withdraw from the EU deserve better, much better, than this.  With Farage as leader we are not going to get it.

40 Responses to “Time spent on this UKIP infighting is time not spent fighting for UK independence”

  1. 1 matthu 01/12/2013 at 1:48 pm

    I would have thought there were more important news items to focus on e.g.

    Opinium found that just 26% of British voters regard the EU as, overall, a “good thing” compared with 42% who say it is a “bad thing”. In Poland 62% say it is a good thing and 13% bad; in Germany 55% good and 17% bad, and in France 36% good and 34% bad.

    When asked about the UK’s contribution to the EU, there is little enthusiasm among our partners, and little to suggest they will go out of their way to keep us in. Just 9% of Germans and 15% of French people think the UK is a positive influence on the EU, with more Poles, 33%, taking that view.

    Only 16% of Germans and 26% of French people back the idea of a special deal being struck for the UK. Cameron has said he intends to renegotiate the UK terms of entry and hold an in/out referendum if he wins a majority at the next election, offering the new arrangement to the British people in a referendum.

    The idea of Britain leaving the EU does not appear to worry our European partners unduly. Just 24% of French voters said a UK exit would have a negative effect, compared with 36% of Germans and 51% of Poles.

    Rifkind said: “There needs to be a serious debate about the real benefits of – as well as the real problems about – British membership of the EU. Without it we could do serious damage to Britain’s interests.”

    and this

    Labour’s lead over the Tories has been cut to seven percentage points, with Ukip enjoying a new surge, according to the latest fortnightly Observer/Opinium poll.

    After two weeks in which immigration and energy prices have been in the news, the high level of support for Nigel Farage’s party will be a worry for all three mainstream parties.

    Now I do understand your often cited point of view that we need to be scoring more goals on important issues like immigration, but there is also a school of thought that suggests by having kicked the ball into play and then leaving three major teams to kick these issues about, Farage manages to avoid attracting the combined opprobium of all three teams and being presented as the nasty party.

    Meanwhile UKIP has been quietly gathering support on other issues (such as HS2 and wind farms) where they are still pretty much able to claim uniquely that they oppose both both coalition and oppositon policy and in doing so they are helping not only to frame the discussion for the all-important television debates (remember that UKIP is not yet guaranteed a podium place) but making it more likely that they will partake.

    Just my 2p.

  2. 2 matthu 01/12/2013 at 2:04 pm

    There was also this piece here#http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/europe/eu/10485773/EU-Britain-is-moving-closer-to-the-exit.html

    where David Campbell Bannerman publicises his recent (forthcoming?) book ‘Time To Jump: A Positive Vision of a Britain Out of the EU and In EEA Lite’ which I think probably fills a highly visible gap – and will also be one book I am looking forward to finding in my Christmas stocking!

    I particularly liked Campbell Bannerman’s desciption of wher we are today:

    I would liken our current situation to that of an unfortunate lobster in a boiling pot of water.

    Over the past 40 years, we have been quietly sitting in the water as the federalist cooks have slowly turned up the temperature. Only now is the water coming to the boil. And only now do we have to jump if we are to preserve our status as an independent nation state…

    … The sheer weight of the EU’s interventions, power grabs and diktats should have been a clue: a European diplomatic service which promotes the EU’s national interests not ours, the EU having a national anthem – Beethoven’s ninth – which ardent federalists stand for as if for our Queen, the risk of power blackouts occasioned by EU carbon reduction targets, our empty WTO trade seat, the desperate struggle to save the euro regardless of its severe human cost.

    But late in the day, the British lobster is stirring. I believe the Prime Minister has shown great courage and foresight in offering the British public a chance to decide through an In/Out referendum.

    And that brings me to my second point. If there is such a referendum choice of ‘Renegotiated In’ or ‘Negotiated Out’ then we have to look seriously at the Out option.’

    It is interesting that Campbell Bannerman of course was the MEP who stood for election as leader of UKIP in 2011 and resigned from UKIP (defecting to the Conservatives) when Farage regained that position. At the time, he complained that UKIP had become “obsessed with single issue politics, internal fighting and shouting from the sidelines”.

    Well, they may still be engaging in a lot of internal fighting (aren’t all parties thus engaged most of the time? Not that the average voter would notice) but at least they can no longer be accused of being obsessed with single issue politics. So in that one important respect they make themselves more appealing to the average voter and thus more electable.

  3. 3 graham wood 01/12/2013 at 2:22 pm

    “UKIP is in a state of civil war in Scotland.” But as Matthu points out above – nothing new there, and all three parties experience in-fighting and an evolution of positions. The main point is, as we have so often said on this and other blogs, UKIP is the only political party committed to taking us out of the EU.
    This is not likely to change much before the next GE in 2015 on present trends, so I suggest it behoves eurosceptics to support UKIP, notwithstanding its many internal problems, and for some, distaste for the leader NF. The alternative is “more of the same” and no hope for a realistic Brexit.
    Of course, UKIP cannot deliver that, but it can by so raising the profile of the EU as an electoral issue, compel the other parties to pay serious attention to various implications of our membership, and dance to their tune.. The issue of immigration is a case in point.

    So, AM, leaving aside the theoretical status of the admirable HA 6 demands for the moment, what is your alternative as a strategy in the coming months ahead of a GE?

  4. 4 Autonomous Mind 01/12/2013 at 2:40 pm

    Graham, there is a big difference between what is happening and what you imagine to be happening.

    This is nothing to do with The Harrogate Agenda. The General Election is meaningless and nothing that could possibly happen will result in those elected doing anything to progress a Brexit.

    As I’ve explained before with regard to this subject, my solution is to have a non-party political campaign that focuses exclusively on leaving the EU. An entity with supporters and donors, but not members. A special purpose vehicle in effect that does not get sidetracked into other issues in the way UKIP inevitably has, and does not have to service and manage all the issues that come with members and power struggles and side agendas. It needs to be better organised and more inclusive than the existing membership groups that exist.

    I will not be supporting any party, and certainly not UKIP. The party does not offer the prospect of a Brexit because it will not be in a position to change anything.

  5. 5 Bellevue 01/12/2013 at 4:14 pm

    So, AM, what are we EU haters to do?
    I am very sympathetic to your position, and understand your frustrations with UKIP. BUT, having said that….. what are we mere mortals supposed to do to help get us out of the EU? I mean this sincerely; you advocate not voting at all —– what is that going to achieve in the short term?
    We really want to DO something…… but what would you suggest?

  6. 6 Bellevue 01/12/2013 at 4:18 pm

    As an aside, Matthu…… it doesnt really matter that x% of germans and y% of french want Britain to fork orf……. these are the plebs of the various countries. The ‘elite’ want closer union, and bugger what the plebs want. A total waste of a poll. The plebs are NOT going to be listened to; so just lie down before you hurt yourself…….

  7. 7 Antisthenes 01/12/2013 at 4:33 pm

    I believe there has been a lot of sense in some of the comments made on this particular article more so than in the article itself. I find that AM and his colleagues in the blogosphere spend too much time disparaging those who have a recognized platform for attacking the UK’s membership of the EU. Instead should be putting their energies into building a credible campaign and platform from which to launch it for us non represented euro-skeptics who do not subscribe to the like’s of UKIP or we will join UKIP infighting or not.

  8. 8 matthu 01/12/2013 at 4:53 pm

    Bellvue –

    On the contrary, I think the point of knowing that only 16% of Germans and 26% of French people back the idea of a special deal being struck for the UK is that we get an early indication of how easy it would be for the elite of those countries to take the electorate with them in the event that EU renegotiations lead to another treaty which requires wholesale referenda across the EU.

    If no consideration needed to be given to the plebs at all, then a special deal could simply be struck to keep the UK sweet. But if it is likely to cause resentment amongst the electorate, then they will also demand sweeteners.

    If one or more mainland electorates were to feel that it was being proposed that certain EU principles that had been very close to their hearts were being softened or dispensed with altogether, and that this had come about largely to accommodate the UK, then they may feel less inclined to vote “YES” in any referendum and more likely to demand sweeteners of their own.

    This all makes it very much harder for Cameron to reach any new deal with his EU colleagues.

  9. 9 Peter Troy 01/12/2013 at 5:48 pm

    What is happening to UKIP in Scotland is sad for the Out of EU cause, there is no other anti-EU political representation in Scotland. Ten years ago real progress was being made in the quite crowed Scottish political arena; clearly that has been lost. It is reflective of the self-focused shallow culture that dominates UKIP which inevitably leads its members to fight each other rather than their political enemies.

    Peter Troy UKIP Lead Candidate 2004 EUP elections.

  10. 10 Autonomous Mind 01/12/2013 at 7:04 pm

    Antisthenes, disparaging those who have a recognized platform for attacking the UK’s membership of the EU… and who completely waste it while running away from the debate and leaving the EUphiles a free run to say what they like uncontested – when they’re not too busy kicking out anyone who opposes Kim Jong-Nige.

  11. 11 Antisthenes 01/12/2013 at 7:49 pm

    AM. You have a point as always but to me that is not relevant in the scheme of things. Attentions, energies and focus should be directed at the exit of the UK from EU or so reforming the EU (a forlorn hope I know but one that should not be discounted as without trying that first you will not bring UK citizens onside) so that the UK will have as good as left as all that will be retained is no political tie only a common market. This continual shouting at other fellow euro-skeptics however good or bad they are is not in the least productive to the cause. In fact it puts you and your colleagues in danger of being labeled as devise as those you disparage and it may make some wonder if you are waging a vendetta and not a serious EU exit campaign. You and your colleagues as I understand it have the resources and expertise to give impetus to the out campaign and that is what we wish to read about on these pages. We want to know the plan of action and the substance not critiques about side event soap operas.

  12. 12 matthu 01/12/2013 at 9:02 pm

    Hear, hear!

    How best do we summon our resources so as to make the biggest possible impact in the short time available? (I personally think it is important now to develop as optimistic a vision as we can of UK outside of the EU, hence why I am keen to read Campbell Bannerman’s ‘Time To Jump: A Positive Vision of a Britain Out of the EU and In EEA Lite’.)

    What are the key milestones we should be aiming to achieve – and by when?

    Is it the right tactic to seek to maximise the number of UKIP local councillors on the ground?

    Is it the right tactic to seek to maximise the UKIP vote at the MEP elections in 2014? And if so, what should be the tactic after May 2014 in order to maintain public support for an OUT vote?

    Above all, how do we win apathetic voters round without antagonizing them?

  13. 13 graham wood 01/12/2013 at 9:07 pm

    AM. You say that your solution is for a non party political campaign that focuses exclusively on leaving the EU.
    But you know very well that such organisations already exist, and have been campaigning for this objective for many years. There is the CIB, the Democracy Movement, Better Off out, Bruges, and many more. Surely you are not suggesting the formation of yet another one – an exercise in duplication of effort and resources.?
    As pointed out before, in the final analysis the battle for Brexit will be won or lost in Westminster, nowhere else! Do you agree?
    It is for this reason that many of us push for support for UKIP, notwithstanding its many defects as already acknowledged.

  14. 14 Autonomous Mind 01/12/2013 at 9:42 pm

    Graham, I have said on more than one occasion that what’s needed is the groups to form an alliance. They would retain their identity, but work together for the cause pushing an agreed narrative and giving consistent answers.

    The battle for Brexit will be won by the grassroots bringing the politicians to heel. It won’t happen as a result of party political activity in Parliament. And in any case, UKIP having one or two seats will achieve nothing.

  15. 15 matthu 01/12/2013 at 9:44 pm

    I openly admit that I am a complete novice at this, but it seems to me that whether you have a party political or a non-party political campaign, you are still going to need organisational structure and activists on the ground in order to win over public opinion.

    That is, unless someone can see a way of winning this in an entirely different and unconventional manner perhaps by using digital technology and crowd sourcing? To my mind that would be rather like trying to win a conventional land war entirely electronically without relying on tanks or aircraft.

  16. 16 theboillingfrog 01/12/2013 at 9:54 pm

    @Graham Wood “As pointed out before, in the final analysis the battle for Brexit will be won or lost in Westminster, nowhere else! Do you agree?”

    The problem is while Westminister can get us out there is nothing stopping a future government from taking us straight back in – within months if not days – under Article 49 of Lisbon. As history acutely informs us this can (and will) be done with no mandate and based on lies.

    It’s not the battle for Brexit that’s the problem but the battle for democracy. And that cannot be achieved by UKIP in its current form.

  17. 17 Autonomous Mind 01/12/2013 at 10:12 pm

    matthu, what short time available? When do you think a referendum is going to be held, exactly?

    As for Campbell-Bannerman, much of what he is arguing is lifted wholesale from EU Referendum. Almost uniquely Richard North has been arguing a positive vision of the opportunities that would open up to an independent UK, while UKIP has been using negative language. It’s a shame your enthusiasm is reserved for a presitgious turncoat whose contribution is merely a flawed imitation of original and forensically researched.

    I don’t believe you can set down key milestones at this time. There are too many factors that would break a timetable and we are not yet in control of events. Maximising UKIP councillors on the ground makes little difference, particularly when their focus will be trying to win election and follow the agenda set down by Farage. Maximising the UKIP vote in 2014 is meaningless because as 2015 draws near the likelihood of a two party squeeze will increase.

    No out vote is going to happen before 2019/2020 because at the time Cameron would be holding his fabled in-out poll, he will be putting a yes-no treaty vote to the public – assuming he wins the election. Miliband will do all he can to avoid any vote. But if Labour are in power and their popularity falls, the rules of the game could change and Cameron’s Tory successor may back the ‘out’ side for political expediency. That’s when the EUsceptics need to be ready with positive messages for voters.

  18. 18 Autonomous Mind 01/12/2013 at 10:20 pm

    matthu, with most of the politicians in Norway in favour of EU membership, the grassroots No to EU campaign won the referendum convincingly to stay outside the union.

    The notion of an alliance of EUsceptic groups working together off one hymnsheet is hardly original, but it could prove very effective.

  19. 19 matthu 01/12/2013 at 11:56 pm

    AM, if much of what Campbell-Bannerman is arguing has been lifted wholesale from EU Referendum then presumably you would have no hesitation in recommending the ideas put forward in this book?

    I certainly don’t reserve my enthusiasm for any particular individual – but I do think it is important to maintain a swelling of public opinion.

    And for that reason, I do think it is important for UKIP to have as strong a showing as possible in 2014 in order to capture the imagination of the public and persuade them that their vote matters. Because if UKIP were to suffer a severe setback in 2014, it would be that much harder to organise the electorate to vote in sufficient numbers to win an referendum, particularly if one were to be called much earlier than anticipated.

    There is some analogy here with the government’s battle to win the public’s mind over climate science. Had surface temperatures continued to rise, there would have been a continual swelling of public opinion in favour of action and then, almost regardless of the merits of the science, the battle would have been won (or lost, depending on your viewpoint).

    I suspect there are many voters who have for many years been completely disillusioned by Westminster politics and it is important for them to have a rallying point. It just so happens that the only rallying point that is uniquely different from any of the three major parties – and on so many readily identifiable issues – is UKIP.

    If you pull the plug on UKIP, you say goodbye to capturing the minds of a sizeable proportion of the public vote in time for any forthcoming referendum. There will be no second opportunity.

    All IMHO and others may and will disagree.

  20. 20 Autonomous Mind 02/12/2013 at 9:44 am

    As much of what Campbell-Bannerman is arguing has been lifted wholesale from EU Referendum then presumably you would have no hesitation in arguing he should be getting behind what has been created, rather than passing off the work he’s lifted as his own? Do you also expect Apple to recommend Samsung technology that has been ripped off from them? Do you expect BA to recommend Virgin?

    Don’t you find it ironic that you are lauding a man who is committed to defeating UKIP at the election? You criticise me for highlighting UKIP failures, but say nothing about a man who is actively trying to defeat UKIP at the ballot box.

    If people want to rally around a party out of desperation that’s up to them. But I’ve already made the point that party politics is not going to solve anything. So while those folk may feel better, nothing they want to see is going to be realised through voting – unless it is in a referendum where people, for once, actually have some power.

  21. 21 Spinwatch 02/12/2013 at 9:45 am

    ‘You take the high road and I take the low road’.

    I personally have little in interest in UKIP UK, and feel that whoever will be lead candidate in Scotland has zero chance of becoming a MEP. Besides it’s been long established UKIP policy that whereas members rank the candidates, the party has always reserved the right to choose No 1 and No 2 since the list system was brought in.

    Monckton & co north of the border could at least have some sport in asking why Salmond & co object to laws from Westminster, but welcome being in the EU where an ‘independent’ Scotland would have maybe 2% max of the voting weight and be banned from legislating in any way that conflicted with the mass of EU law.

  22. 22 matthu 02/12/2013 at 10:00 am

    AM – I have not attempted to laud any individual, let alone Campbell Bannerman. I have merely drawn attention to his book, which I have made clear that I have not read.

    I have indicated that I feel it is a good thing to draw attention to the positive aspects of leaving the EU, a viewpoint that I assume you agree with.

    I am certainly not rallying around any party (or individual) out of desperation: that is your own interpretation. I merely point out that it is advantageous to have a rallying point, which those in favour of exit would otherwise lack at the moment.

    I am deliberately not trying to step on any sensitivities – but clearly I am!

  23. 23 graham wood 02/12/2013 at 10:02 am

    TBF writes.”The problem is while Westminister can get us out there is nothing stopping a future government from taking us straight back in – within months if not days – under Article 49 of Lisbon. As history acutely informs us this can (and will) be done with no mandate and based on lies.”

    This is nonsense. Once we have left the EU via a British Act of Parliament, including repeal of the ECA 72, then of course the UK would no longer be under the jurisdiction of any EU law. Lisbon, including all its articles will be history and the treaties null and void.
    As for a new government seeking to reverse such a decision – of course almost anything is possible with the treacherous political class at Westminster, but to “take us back in” in sheer fantasy land, and immediate political suicide for the party concerned.

    It is a fact that no government is actually bound by a referendum for In/out, but once that plebiscite has taken place the whole political scenario changes and we become an independent self governing nation once again. It is extremely unlikely therefore that the political will to re-enter the prison gates once again will be there, either with the people or any government IMO.

  24. 24 graham wood 02/12/2013 at 10:19 am

    AM: Graham, I have said on more than one occasion that what’s needed is the groups to form an alliance.

    But as mentioned these already exist and over many years have successfully moved public opinion on the issues – but this is not enough is it?
    As for an Alliance – are you aware of the excellent work done by the New Alliance (see their website) which originally sought to co-ordinate the activities of the various separate groups?
    IMO there is an urgent need to do this in order to present a stronger and united opposition to the Europhiles in any coming referendum campaign.
    Up till now none of this activity has succeeded in “bringing the politicians to heel” as you put it. Why so? Because influence is not the same as political power, and that can only be exercised by a party at Westminster, promoting a particular exit policy, and prepared to put up candidates to get us out. This is what UKIP seeks to do.
    How else do you think the politicians can be brought to “heel”?

  25. 25 theboillingfrog 02/12/2013 at 11:09 am

    @Graham Wood “This is nonsense. Once we have left the EU via a British Act of Parliament, including repeal of the ECA 72, then of course the UK would no longer be under the jurisdiction of any EU law. Lisbon, including all its articles will be history and the treaties null and void.”

    Article 49 is the accession clause which is used by non-EU countries to join. Once we have left another government can reverse the decision by applying to the EU to rejoin and that is a process done via Article 49.

    So no it’s not nonsense.

  26. 26 graham wood 02/12/2013 at 11:37 am

    TBF. As said, your suggestion is pure fantasy. On what possible grounds, after having just left the EU and all its works, would the British people suddenly reverse that decision?
    You can’t be serious. Article 49 will simply not be relevant.

  27. 27 matthu 02/12/2013 at 11:40 am

    Invoking article 49 would presumably mean joining the Euro as well?

  28. 28 theboillingfrog 02/12/2013 at 2:46 pm

    @Graham Wood. It won’t be the British people that would reverse the decision, but another government. There’s nothing stopping them from applying to rejoin after being elected and to do so without a mandate, afterall how do you think we became members in the first place?

    Unless we change how we are governed domestically then history has a very real danger of repeating itself and we’re back to square one.

  29. 29 kenomeat 02/12/2013 at 3:17 pm

    TBF I think on this occasion you are mistaken. Once out of the EU I think it would be many years before a future government would try to get us back in, by which time I doubt whether the EU would even exist, having either imploded under the weight of its own incompetence or been rejected (finally) by the peoples of Europe.

  30. 30 Edward Spalton 02/12/2013 at 6:32 pm

    It is quite possible that vested interests in the Foreign Office and sundry quangos would deliberately make such a poor job of negotiating the Brexit as to have people begging to get back into the EU.

    I recall the mincemeat which the educational establishment made of the Conservatives’ national curriculum which was initially intended to be a very simple matter of ensuring literacy and numeracy. It was ambushed and turned into a complicated prescriptive monster – adding to the problems it was supposed to solve. Whilst there was no lack of initial political determination, there were “appeasers” within the Tory ranks who eventually let the” progressive” consensus have its way

  31. 31 Autonomous Mind 02/12/2013 at 9:50 pm

    Graham, get back to reality and face facts – UKIP will not achieve anything. Kid yourself all you like. In 20 years UKIP has achieved nothing and has torn itself apart time and again.

    Go on. Vote UKIP, see where it gets you. Norway has shown how to do it. You can either learn from your own mistakes or apply what has been shown to work. Clearly you can’t accept parties never win campaigns like this against the status quo.

  32. 32 Edward Spalton 03/12/2013 at 7:32 am

    As one who left UKIP in 2000 over much the same problems as are now occurring, I remember speaking to Richard at the 2000 conference and asking how he tolerated such a nest of vipers. He replied that vipers could have their uses! So they might, I suppose – and he certainly did his best.
    Nonetheless the present wave of public sentiment is floating UKIP’s boat in spite of all the years wasted.

    Whilst hoping for the best and fearing the worst, I think that is to welcomed. Maybe the new candidates will show more than the conformity to the leadership’s will for which they have allegedly been selected. The EU elections certainly provide an opportunity to put the wind up the Europhile parties. Even Peter Kellner ( Mr Catherine Ashton) thinks they could top the poll.

    In the meantime, for those looking for a cross-party organisation , do consider CAMPAIGN FOR AN INDEPENDENT BRITAIN. The website has been having problems so subscriptions (£20) have to go by post until repairs are complete but do have a look at it http://www.freebritain.org.uk .
    We could use some new blood!

  33. 33 graham wood 03/12/2013 at 10:27 am

    AM. You are very negative., spending so much time and expending anti UKIP rhetoric. Of course nobody is suggesting that this party is in any sense “the answer” to a Brexit question.
    Time you got over your cynicism and recognise that UKIP nevertheless is a real factor in British politics today, and its role as an ‘agent provocateur’ and challenge to the complacency of the three main parties is slowly but surely changing much of the political landscape for the better.
    I suggest you use your blog to put forward some positive ideas as to the way forward – oe even consider implementing some moves towards your desire to see a united, cordinated eurosceptic opposition to the europhiles you say you want.

  34. 34 Diane Ellis 03/12/2013 at 11:48 am

    What’s New. UKIP has been the same since its conception, how it has managed to get so far with so little real input is beyond not only me but many others who have tried to bring knowledge and experience to the organization and been shot down over friendly territory

  35. 35 kenomeat 03/12/2013 at 12:39 pm

    I am only a recent member of UKIP and a passive one at that, having not yet attended any of the branch meetings. I certainly have no knowledge of the kind of bickering at senior level which so many former members complain about but am in no doubt that such bickering goes on. My point is that surely this would apply to any of the political parties. Look at Labour over the Falkirk scandal and the fighting with Militant Tendency in the 80’s. And didn’t some members of Thatcher’s cabinet have the same complaints about Maggie that Richard N and company have about Farage? Yes there are questions about leadership style and direction but that applies to the other parties equally. So, in short, whilst we have representative democracy please pull together and get behind UKIP.

  36. 37 kenomeat 03/12/2013 at 8:54 pm

    AM, not the longest debate I’ve had with you but I guess I’m left in no doubt about your position.

  37. 38 matthu 03/12/2013 at 9:34 pm

    Another polling blow for the Tories in phase 2 of the CON marginals polling funded by a UKIP donor

    70% of UKIP Voters DID NOT vote CON at GE2010


    Tories behind Labour and level with Ukip in key target seats

    Polls show Labour with 18-point lead over Ukip in Great Grimsby and 20-point lead over Conservatives in Dudley North


    The way I read this, organisations such as THA are quietly trying to persuade influential thinkers (and maybe others) to their point of view – and behind the scenes I suspect they have had a lot of success amongst a number of important people who have yet to show their hand (please correct me if I am wrong – I freely admit I am guessing here, not wanting to mislead anyone)

    Meanwhile UKIP are persuading the common voter. Largely people who did NOT vote Conservative last time around. Maybe people who have witheld their vote for quite some time.

    Two entirely different approaches: a push-me pull-me.

    I am not at all convinced that the 2015 election is going to be a 2-party squeeze and my feelings look to be being borne out by the latest polling.

    Either way, I believe there is room for both approaches (at least nobody has explained to me why these two approaches conflict). The truth is, neither approach could work if voter apathy increases. Which approach is dispelling voter apathy with greatest effect?

  38. 40 Autonomous Mind 04/12/2013 at 12:29 am

    matthu, a post coming up now just for you…

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