UKIP – the best and the worst for the anti-EU side

UKIP’s billboard poster campaign is a curious mix of badly judged rubbish tempered by something more incisive that the party doesn’t do enough of.

The poster campaign tells us a great deal about the party’s approach to the forthcoming European Parliament elections and shows the party at both its best and worst, with implications for the wider anti-EU part of the electorate.  Starting with the worst…

The EU policy at work poster is plays on the anxieties of low and semi skilled workers, portraying a man in a hard hat who made to appear as though he has been adversely affected  by cheap labour coming to this country from other EU countries.  The problem with this is that only certain sectors have been affected and the impact has not been across the board.

Indeed many farmers have been grateful for cheap labour on their land, particularly at harvest when produce needs to be picked or dug up within a small time frame. Whereas they frequently struggled to hire enough labour for the task, labour from other EU states has ensured a reduction in produce spoil and maximised output.

The open goal missed here is that as an independent country we could decide what our needs are and welcome those with the skills we need, or who will perform tasks there there is a labour shortage.  But that isn’t what the poster says, as such it characterises the party in an unfavourable manner.

Then there is the casual ignorance of highly skilled roles that could not be filled, such as dentists, which now have been thanks to labour from EU member states, to the benefit of large numbers of patients.  Indeed my own excellent dentist is from Lithuania and prior to dentists from other EU countries coming to my town, getting NHS dentistry was all but impossible.  Are UKIP suggesting this is a bad thing? It is but one example, but there are others where this country’s less well off most certainly benefit.

Dentists from elsewhere in the EU were among those looking for work, but did not displace UK workers when providing a much needed service.  It shows this issue, and the one above regarding benefits of unskilled labour, is not as black and white as UKIP like to suggest; and without the application of some specifics and detail UKIP will only reinforce the electoral glass ceiling it has created for itself by alienating people who see there have been positives as well as negatives and may feel UKIP’s sweeping generalisations are irresponsible or plain inaccurate.

Then there is the bus/limo poster.  At first glance it’s clever, but there is an element of rank hypocrisy here because our daily grind is also funding the very comfortable lifestyles of UKIP’s MEPs.  UKIP separating themselves from the gravy train when they have first class seats on it is basically dishonest.

We have already found that Nigel Farage has been taking full advantage of any allowance going, but has also tapped into an opportunity to boost his European Parliament pension fund at taxpayers’ expense so that he stands to get a £71,000-a-year pension from the EU when he leaves retires.  Criticising other Eurocrats for something UKIP MEPs will also benefit from leaves the party open to attack, such as with the image below, which Richard showed on EU Referendum today.

Finally, however – the figures used in the wording notwithstanding – we find an intelligent piece of campaign material, below, that gets to the heart of the matter of who really runs this country.

This is the kind of thing that makes people think and cannot be countered – the EU runs the UK.  It is an honest reflection of reality and could be adjusted to address the concerns over control of immigration, the use of British taxpayers’ money, trade, international affairs and various other negatives this country experiences as a result of not being independent and self determining.  This is what UKIP can achieve when it applies some brain power.

This is what the whole anti-EU side needs, but sadly there is too little of it.  There are still many good people in UKIP, but as we have said before they are being let down by the slapdash ignorance of the leadership.  UKIP still deserves better.

5 Responses to “UKIP – the best and the worst for the anti-EU side”

  1. 1 philjourdan 22/04/2014 at 2:54 pm

    Being a colonial, I am very interested in the UKIP (I would hope our Tea Party does as well at some point). But your first 2 points are the same point in actual fact.

    Farmers are business men. They hire labor. The cheaper the labor, the lower the price for their goods, and the more money they can keep.

    The UK government is also a business (but like all governments, very poorly run – but we will save that for another day). So again, the cheaper the labor, the better the price. But instead of accepting a price as a business must (due to competition), the government SETS the price. The result is that fewer people are willing to work for that price.

    Then comes the immigrants who would earn a lot less in their native land, and will work for the price. Your Lithuanian dentist.

    Both results (one you see as good, one as bad) are due to cheap labor. And both are due to an open borders policy.

    We have the same issue here. With the illegal aliens. Some maintain that they are needed to work in the fields. No they are not. But the result of them not working in the fields will be higher food prices.

    But they want to stop them there. At the low end of the wage scale. But that does not work too well. Because then you get immigrants from India who jump at a chance to earn a decent wage in an IT job. That means there is no shortage of labor in that area, and wages do not rise. IT workers (the middle class in the States) hate that. yet it is the same dynamics that keep their food prices low.

    For the most part, Americans are extremely ignorant of the dynamics happening. We have a regime that is not only NOT enforcing laws about immigration, but encouraging illegal immigration (the EU without an agreement). Then they whine about why wages are not going up! You do not have to like Economics, but you cannot defeat economics. And that is their problem.

    On your last issue, that of “Who runs the UK”, I agree with you. At least on this side of the pond, that seems to be the strongest hand the UKIP has. But I am not very knowledgeable of UK politics.

  2. 2 John Payne 22/04/2014 at 4:52 pm

    Obviously the writer is against UKIP and in favour of unlimited immigration. I must say there is a striking bias in the article which destroys his whole arguement. My view on unlimited immigration is for every unskilled immigrant employed puts one UK National on unemployment to be supported by UK national tax payers. On the question of immigration I am 100% behind UKIP and the publicity machine.

  3. 3 Autonomous Mind 22/04/2014 at 6:00 pm

    Where am I in favour of unlimited immigration? Evidence?

    Obviously your inability to read and tendancy to make unsubstantiated accusations destroys your whole comment.

  4. 4 Mark Wadsworth 22/04/2014 at 8:36 pm

    I don’t get this “75% of our laws are made in Brussels” business.

    All our laws are supposed to be EU-compliant, if not they get scrapped, so you could just as easily argue 100%.

    Even if not a single word, full stop or comma were “dictated from Brussels” out laws are ultimately shaped by the EU, end of discussion.

    Whether that makes for better or worse laws, and whether our laws would be worse or better were it not for this influence is a far more interesting topic, but you can’t generalise about that.

  5. 5 Vanessa 23/04/2014 at 10:36 am

    I do agree, to a certain extent on your comment about dentists etc. But you may remember that EU trained doctors etc. do not have the same quality of training as English doctors – the story of the German doctor who killed someone because he did not know how much of a drug to give his patient.

    Our training used to be “second to none” but now that is controlled by the EU they have reduced the hours doctors are trained and can work leading to some consultants complaining that junior doctors leave their shift because their hours are “up” and also junior doctors being left “out of their depth” because they have not had long enough shadowing a consultant. All caused by EU directives.

    We have to be very careful who we allow into this country to work and I am a fan of the Visa system to control who comes here not open borders for all.

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