Friday, May 25, 2012

This is what happens ....

... when I stay away from blogging for a few days: UKIP or, at least, its leader decides to do something stupid.

The Boss on EURef has already written about the story in his inimitable fashion and, as it happens, I have heard that tale of the unreliable Hannan from other sources as well.

Last time there was talk of an electoral pact, Farage offered one to the Tories if they promised to have an IN/OUT referendum. The offer was greeted with loud guffaws and was as stupid an idea as anyone had ever heard.

Now the offer is somewhat different. Fresh from the doubtful achievement of around 8 per cent of the vote (13.8 per cent outside London) on a 32 per cent turn-out and touting the odd opinion poll that puts UKIP ahead of the Lib-Dims together with those endless never-coming-to-anything rumours about Tories who might want to commit electoral suicide by joining UKIP, Nigel Farage has apparently offered to throw away the party's strongest weapon, the ability to take votes away and to run joint candidates.
But with Ukip regularly polling around 10% - sometimes beating the Liberal Democrats into fourth place - and with more than a quarter of Tory supporters in a recent survey saying they would consider voting for the eurosceptic party, Mr Farage believes that some Conservatives are attracted by the idea of co-operation.
Asked about the possibility of joint Tory/Ukip candidates, Mr Farage told The Spectator magazine: "What I do know is there are Conservative associations up and down the country who think this could be a way forward.
"All I would say to you is that in terms of co-operation or deals or anything in the future, firstly it's some way off. But secondly, I can see that there are associations thinking along these lines. If they approach us, would I entertain and contemplate such ideas? Of course I would."
Mr Farage said he hoped Ukip could be the "catalyst" for a "reconfiguration of British politics", that would see a more libertarian party of the right emerge, committed not only to withdrawal from the EU but also a smaller state.
As I have said before, if UKIP were going to provide that catalyst it ought to be a good deal nearer to having an MP or two or, perhaps, a dozen. After twenty years of existence, nudging the Lib-Dims is just not sufficient achievement. The truth is that nothing will come of this idea of co-operation any more than of any previous one: if nothing else most UKIP members will object to being swallowed up by the Tories whom they rightly do not trust. Would it not be better if Mr Farage and his flunkeys finally started thinking about strengthening the party and working out some better strategies?


  1. NF makes statement of denial. See

  2. Helen, As I posted Farage is Ukip and Ukip is Farage - and that is the way it will remain. It has become a vehicle for his personal glorification and achieving publicity.

    The administration is a joke, the people in positions of being able to do anything about it are sycophants of Farage - and likewise a joke.

    Neither does anyone among the hierachy wish to discuss the obvious shortfalls. It was for that reason that I did not renew my membership.

  3. OK, if not UKIP then who else? Farage has the likeability factor which is important for a leader and the party has been making steady, if slow, progress. It's not easy for a party to gain traction in the UK when the Big Three have most of the bases covered as far as unthinking people are concerned. UKIP also has policies the country needs and which are proving attractive to Tory voters but it is obviously not easy to persuade Tories to give up their allegiance although Cameron is helping in that regard and the gradual implosion of the EU isn't harming. In my opinion, UKIP is making progress towards that critical mass at which point it will start picking up the odd seat here and there. Once that starts I genuinely believe there will be a snowball effect as Tories realise who better represents their - and the nation's - interests.

    1. @Bruce Robbins:

      It is that slow, too steady progress that is the problem. Being an ex-Chair of a branch I have seen at first hand those in the hierachy more content to cement their own positions than be interested in change.

      Example 1: Last year, while still a member, I attende a meeting on the appointment of a new County Organiser. This meeting was attended by the Regional Organiser for the South East and afterwards I made the offer that I would travel round all branches in Oxon to talk about Electoral Law and Campaigning, the latter which I had done with the Conservative Party when Vice Chair of a Berkshire branch - having seen their modus operandi close up - it works. The offer was greeted with little enthusiasm and I was informed he would contact me. That was nearly a year ago!

      It is a fact that Ukip's website is a joke, likewise their administration and again when suggestions have been made, they have have totally ignored.

      Yes, Farage is 'likeable' but he repeats the same old speech and uses the same old phrases - I have lost count of the number of times I have heard the 'cigarette paper' analogy........!

      The cynic in me says that Farage and Ukip are the permitted opposition, permitted by the Lib/Lab/Con on the basis that he does not try too hard!

      Ukip 'crow' about their polling 8/9% - hells bells, with the public mood at the moment on matters EU, immigration, law & order, etc; Ukip should be polling well into the 20's percentage wise. Patrick O'Flynn of the Express is not much help either!