Monday, 10 February 2014

Are UKIP The New Judas Goats?

I have been in two minds whether to publish this post or not. While it may not always be apparent on this blog, I tend to pull my punches when it comes to criticism of UKIP.  And I do so out of deference to the many hard working UKIP volunteers on the ground (of which I have also been one of them). They are the unsung heroes of the cause- the backbone of the party.

On the other hand there is also the consideration that some issues within UKIP need to be addressed – the issues that fundamentally, and possibly fatally, undermine the very same hard work by volunteers. It saddens me and frustrates me greatly.

I rejoined UKIP just over a year ago – albeit reluctantly - trying to help out with the impending local elections in May 2013. My membership now over a year old expired last month and I have taken the reluctant decision to let it lapse without renewing it.

The final straw for me I guess was Farage’s recent description of the 2010 manifesto as “drivel”:
"Malcolm Pearson, who was leader at the time, was picked up in interviews for not knowing the manifesto.

"Of course he didn't - it was 486 pages of excessive detail. Eighteen months ago I said I want the whole lot taken down, we reject the whole thing...
"I didn't read it. It was drivel. It was 486 pages of drivel...It was a nonsense. We have put that behind us and moved onto a professional footing."
This would be the same "drivel" manifesto that Farage and Lord Pearson signed and approved of:
Mr Farage signed the foreword to the 2010 manifesto as the "chief party spokesman," along with Lord Pearson and Mr Campbell Bannerman.
The clue here though is David Campbell Bannerman, the man who drew up the 2010 document, and then later defected back to the Tories.

As a consequence under intense questioning from BBC's Andrew Neil, Farage decided to make a personal dig at Campbell Bannerman by dismissing the manifesto in derogatory terms. For the sake of the party he could have instead played a straight bat and simply argued that UKIP had moved on from 2010. But the personal dig was evidently more important – further evidence that UKIP is Nigel Farage’s plaything.

Nothing demonstrates Farage's priorities more clearly than when he is prepared to effective dismiss for personal gain, not only the work of those who spent their time drawing up the manifesto, but the hundreds of UKIP volunteers (in the main) who stood in 2010 in front of hustings meetings, and knocked on doors, defending that manifesto.

Only now are they to be told that Nigel thinks it was all "drivel" despite him approving it at the time and standing at the last election on its promises. Well thanks a lot Nigel... for knowingly sending out hard-working volunteers to the electorate with nothing more than “drivel” to defend themselves. His comments are quite a smack in the face to UKIP members from the “Dear Leader”.

With no surprise the fallout from Farage's comments has already happened, UKIP supporters' arguments are now easily dismissed by using their leader's remarks, as Dr Eric Edmond observed:
Click on link to call Clegg to see how the Lib Dems are profiting from Farage's stupidity. The relevant call is about 10 minutes into the tape. Clegg was able to brush off a UKIP supporter by simply refering him to Farage's denouncing of the 2010 manifesto and decent honest hard working UKIP members.

All that hard work undone by one interview. And, as to the next manifesto for 2015, how do we know that this one won't be "drivel" as well? It's certain that Farage will be asked whether the next manfesto is "drivel"; questions will be asked as to its content in those terms.

Then reflecting on the running theme throughout UKIP's history we have another example of "falling out with Nigel", by Nigel's drinking partner Godfrey Bloom no less: Godfrey Bloom has hit out at Nigel Farage for scrapping Ukip's 2010 manifesto, saying the party has adopted a "no-policy policy":
In a strongly-worded warning to his former colleagues, the independent MEP said the party was turning into a "don't-frighten-the-horses, all-things-to-all-men, pale blue party. The current lurch to the no-policy policy will damage Ukip in 2015,"
Nigel seems to have developed an unhealthy habit of "falling out" with people; UKIP's history is littered with many many examples. Thus Bloom's comments resonate. Though it's worth noting that Bloom was quite happy to take the shilling while on board the EU gravy train without complaint and many of his troubles have been brought upon himself by himself.

We have evidence of UKIP's "no-policy policy" when we come to the recent flooding, particularly in the Somerset Levels which has dominated the headlines. As Richard North and Booker have demonstrated there is a very significant EU dimension to the Somerset floodings. This is a complete open goal for UKIP if ever there was one regarding how our country is run - low hanging fruit in plain sight.

It's a chance for Farage and UKIP to lead the media debate, a chance to fully expose normally secret EU laws, a chance to reveal the damage EU laws are having on our country when flooding has and will dominate the headlines for weeks. But no, Farage chooses not to despite being informed of the details. Instead the leader of the UK's most prominent Eurosceptic party has this to say (via Autonomous Mind):
I don’t know the truth to the extent the Environment Agency is now bound by European Union rules and laws, I just don’t know, which is why we need to have a public inquiry.
That is an astonishingly pathetic response. Where's the detail? Where's the research?

What is clear is that UKIP - by its leader's actions - is removing itself from the EU debate. The question is why? We are reminded of Dan Hannan who indulges in convoluted intellectual gymnastics to pretend he supports exit from the EU but acknowledges as a consequence inadvertently that his priority is power which comes via his membership of his party.

In light of Farage's deep reluctance to highlight the EU's involvement in the current flooding crisis, does one conclude he doesn’t want to upset the establishment after all? Is he a Judas goat - not really wanting EU exit because it would not mean being a member of this or does he really want to become a member of this.

Like many I voted, and joined UKIP, because I had no other political home to go to with regard to EU membership. Sadly as an opponent of our membership of the EU, the clear policy of UKIP to now vacate that arena means I no longer really have anyone to vote for at all.

Farage's current actions are a betrayal of the hard working volunteers; they - we - deserve much better.


  1. TBF, you have exactly voiced the same concerns and disappointments as I feel. I despair at the poor quality of people who come forward in our country to play an active role in its governance. Surely, the tide has to turn some time and a crop of proper, normal individuals will begin to dismantle the socialist web that is ensnaring us. I'm not the leading kind; which may be fortuitous because given the power, I'd have many socialists summarily executed.

    1. Quite agree JiC - "a crop (lots) of proper, normal individuals" to come forward to dismantle the status quo is exactly what we need.

    2. Yes, me as well.

      There is a small army of us, and could easily and credibly form our own party.

      With all the hoo-hah in the press recently about 2010 policies being "drivel", the Defence policy was co-written by 2 retired senior officers, a Rear Admiral and a Major General.

      An ex-member, and I see no-one to vote for, a once-decent party packed to the rafter with BNP failures, and ignorant homophobes, racists and bigots.

    3. @Nailer,

      Unless it had a tight local focus to overcome FPTP, forget it. A big problem with UKIP is that they have distributed support. How many % of the poll before they start to get seats? Which seats do they threaten?

      It's no accident that UKIP's the way it is with people highly motivated to get out of the EU, not seeing eye to eye with it. There isn't the discipline of gaining seats in Westminster to hold it together; there's the dubious prospect of MEPs.

      Looking into the Somerset Levels debacle, it would appear that the RSPB has been a more effective political force than UKIP, and that's without most of its members realising it, or presenting itself for election.

      Creepy Eh?

  2. UKIPers are tough people and do not switch their membership on and off like a light bulb as you appear to do . The Party is bigger than NF and his backing is no sense unconditional . Anti Eu Empire people have only one home . UKIP . TINA as Maggie used to say .

    1. My loyalty is to the cause not to any party. That has always been the case. And no the "anti-EU Empire", as you call it, don't have a home to go to when UKIP has obviously proved that is no longer an anti-EU party.

    2. You are quite right to publish this criticism of UKIP because the public needs to be made aware that UKIP under Nigel Farage is a negative force for the Eurosceptic cause. His anti EU rhetoric is damaging and counterproductive and his lack of any strategy, tactics or plan is never going to beat the Establishments use of FUD.
      IMO Nigel and his EUkip must be exposed which I'd even go so far as to say is a public duty.

    3. You are talking utter tosh Niall. And you know it.

    4. A growing number of people are coming to the view quite quickly that the EU is a busted flush. Many of these are borderline champagne socialists or dyed-in-the-wool Tories. Their change of attitude over the last 12 months has been quite rapid and remarkable and if UKIP had a coherent strategy these people may be persuaded to vote that way. But at present we hear nothing that gives us any confidence that Nigel Farage is competent. Again our Nigel is missing the opportunity to give these people a home. Look at all the unrest in the Tory party with de-selections and the like. We know Cameron is misreading what’s happening because he believes in all the wrong shit. But if the only tool we have left is to shame the man then that is what will happen.

      Just as that arrogant ignoramus Viviane Reding thinks we Britons are too ignorant to vote on our political future, Nigel Farage must not think he is the only one who knows how to be anti EU. He must appeal to the more informed in the electorate and the rest will follow.

    5. @right writes

      Well, hardly. He is giving opinions - articulately - which you failed to counter, and which many share and recognise. It was and still is the FFC - Farage Fan Club, with absolutely no political footprint, credibility, recognition or even core beliefs.

      If that's the best you can do.....we're screwed.

    6. I disagree Nailer...

      If Farage is guilty of the things that N Warry says... Then what he says and the way he is saying it is merely an example of what he is complaining of... Negativity...

  3. "But the personal dig was evidently more important – further evidence that UKIP is Nigel Farage’s plaything."

    It must be remembered that the vast bulk of UKIP members and executives are NOT "professional politicians"... They have not been along the standard route of Eton (or some other public or state grammar, which they would deny their descendants) OxBridge (PPE), Political researcher, un-winnable seat, safe seat.

    Can you imagine the personal dig that Nigel felt... Rather the huge slap in the face, that a bloke like DCB delivered. He was a nobody in the Tory Party, he joined the UKIP, and then when he failed to win immediate leadership of the party, flounced off back to the blue party, and made himself conspicuous sitting next to the real Judas goat. If he had won, I would have left after twenty years...

    I was at the London hustings and it was like having teeth pulled listening to him, and Professor Tim.

    I am really thankful that Nigel, still in abject pain following yet another near death experience, realised that even though he had already resigned as leader, that he had to enter the race, and virtually every other loyal UKIP member knew it too.

    There is another founder member, who just doesn't have the Farage charisma but nevertheless does some really good work for the party... He has difficulties with the cult of Nigel, but does he throw his toys out of the pram? Does he call the party a bunch of "Judas goats"? No he just carries on doing his excellent job, in probably the hardest constituency.

    I think that you and some of your other "Harromates", are far too unforgiving. I am sometimes astounded by North's brilliant research and I wish he was in UKIP still... But it was he that threw his toys out of the pram when Godders was selected to stand instead of he...

    Whether he jumped or whether he was pushed is neither here nor there... Now here are you and others hanging on Bloom's every nuance... Ironic!

    Just imagine what might be, if Nigel had some of North's research to hand... It is not possible for the mouthpiece to be "on it", his job is to repeat simple messages, without putting foot in mouth and most of the time Nigel does well.

  4. "It must be remembered that the vast bulk of UKIP members and executives are NOT "professional politicians"... They have not been along the standard route of Eton (or some other public or state grammar, which they would deny their descendants) OxBridge (PPE), Political researcher, un-winnable seat, safe seat."

    Most members are not "professional politicians" I agree which was my point, but the hierarchy of the party are "professional politicians" - paid handsomely as they are as MEPs. So why no proper exit plan? Why no coherent message on the EU related Somerset Levels flooding?

    "Can you imagine the personal dig that Nigel felt... Rather the huge slap in the face, that a bloke like DCB delivered. He was a nobody in the Tory Party, he joined the UKIP, and then when he failed to win immediate leadership of the party, flounced off back to the blue party, and made himself conspicuous sitting next to the real Judas goat. If he had won, I would have left after twenty years.."

    Whatever Nigel’s feelings about DCB that is no excuse to undermine the hard work of UKIP supporters by calling the 2010 manifesto “drivel”.

    "I was at the London hustings and it was like having teeth pulled listening to him, and Professor Tim.

    I agree that they are not the most charismatic speakers but that doesn’t negate DCB’s main points. Given countless others have left the party on the same basic points do you not see a pattern?

    "I think that you and some of your other "Harromates", are far too unforgiving. I am sometimes astounded by North's brilliant research and I wish he was in UKIP still... But it was he that threw his toys out of the pram when Godders was selected to stand instead of he..."

    I can’t speak for Richard North, I simply write from experience and sadly that ties in with so many others who have gone before me. There are none so blind who will not see.

    "Just imagine what might be, if Nigel had some of North's research to hand... It is not possible for the mouthpiece to be "on it", his job is to repeat simple messages, without putting foot in mouth and most of the time Nigel does well."

    Nigel did have Richard’s research to hand, it’s publicially available on the bloody internet and Nigel has been made aware of it via Twitter. The ignorance therefore must be deliberate.

    1. TBF, well said. And like you, my allegiance is to the cause not the person or party. If the person or the party fails to come up with the goods, what's the use of hanging on to them?

    2. Where do I turn to? I have a feeling that Mr Farage is messing up deliberately because he fears the party may do well and be expected to do something other than oppose, and this disappoints me. I honestly don't believe he is a daft as some of things he has come out with recently suggests.
      I ask again, who do I turn to whom I can believe.

    3. @AuntyEUnice,

      I don't think he's messing up deliberately, much less because he has the immediate prospect of power wouldn't know what to do with it. Farage is a man with clear flaws.

      There are aspects to this which are cracks into which someone in his position could insert a lever. The question is "Who rules the UK?". Obviously not altogether Westminster and not altogether the EU; it's an amorphous thing and worth exposing and changing.

      I vote UKIP but I regard it as lending them my vote. It's increasingly a toss up between them and the Official Monster Raving Looney Party.

    4. forget UKIP we must abandon the LibLabCon and Political Parties in general to replace with Independent Candidates free of Party Control immediate withdrawal from both EU&ECHR

  5. Oh the irony...

    1. The irony of what? The irony of Farage saying this...

      "I don’t know the truth to the extent the Environment Agency is now bound by European Union rules and laws, I just don’t know, which is why we need to have a public inquiry."

    2. TBF, interestingly, I posted the following on Guido's site, under the Hammond article, under comment 3 about reservoirs :

      "Because the EU won’t permit it. See the Christopher Booker article in the Telegraph from 2012, entitled ‘Keeping the Country short of water is now government and EU policy’.
      And I believe this stems from the UN Agenda 21. The people who are perpetrating this flooding outrage are following a plan which was laid down decades ago, with the connivance of all major political parties in our country. The preponderance of quangos is not accidental, it is a deliberate policy to ensure that there’s always someone else to blame (other than the politicians) when the consequences of this evil become apparent to ordinary citizens of our country. If we don’t rigorously oppose what is being done to us, then things like this flooding will happen more often and with equally dire results."
      Strangely, after nearly 3 hours, it's still awaiting moderation.

    3. Yes JIC... Agenda 21... Very dangerous. I agree...

      How do we change it?

      Or shall we just post stuff on Guido's blog?

  6. You forgot the irony...

    Yes I can see the pattern...

    Criticise and nit pick at what is our only chance, because of your dislike for the current leader... Flounce off and endlessly bray from the sidelines...

    Obviously the most sensible policy...

    Man TF up and act a bit more like Gerard and the rest of those that have a semblance of loyalty.

    I do not regard, receiving payment as being the salient feature of professionalism... Indeed the distinction between amateurism and professionalism in terms of payment has been "disappeared" during my lifetime... No more "players" and "gentlemen"... My point is about the difference between them and us... None of the UKIP highers came via the "professional" route... And you bloody well know what I mean...! Loyal ex-Tories, don't either.

    Here is the point, if you think that you can attract more votes than Nigel... Throw your hat in the ring....

    No, I didn't think so.

    1. Ah you talk about "loyalty" which has been my point in earlier posts.

      There's loyalty and loyalty. There's loyalty to a cause and loyalty to a party and the two things are not always the same, especially when that party reneges on its commitments. In that case loyalty becomes one to a leader rather than to a cause.

      I note though you haven't disputed my main points that UKIP have gone missing on a massive subject when they should have been on the ball.

      Letting your members down in this way is an abuse of loyalty.

    2. If NF had done his homework and linked the floods to the EU as anyone can see, would be a sure fire winner there wouldn't be any braying from the sidelines.

    3. In his position I'd have been reluctant to come out straight away blaming it on the EU and be seen as old Farage beating his anti-EU drum, with the Guardianistas beating the Tory cutz drum, etc All these drums beaten to make capital out of people's misfortune and deflect the blame.

      It isn't as simple as "the EU conjured this up out of nowhere and made them do it", anyway, but there's a definite part the EU, and the way the EU works, has played in the way this has been brought about without democratic control and limits the actions the elected government can take. It does have directly to do with independence, which is supposed to be UKIP's reason for being. It does have to do with the sprawling state, which again is a central issue for UKIP.

      However, he seems to have gone the other way and been reluctant to mention the EU aspect at all, preferring to push a few buttons, just like the others.

      I don't believe they have done their homework on this.

    4. "There's loyalty and loyalty."

      This is fundamental, I agree, I would be happy to be able to choose a better prospect than UKIP...

      Tell me what it is, and I will take a look...

      All I have seen is people like you TBF, form their own little parties like the UKFP that was at the last election... complete with the spleen and invective of all its little hurt ego's...

      Doesn't make any impact on the world outside though...

      "One man and his dog" seems to be entering my mind at this point... I can't think why?


  7. A Ratner moment. The product is rubbish and by implication, the customers fools.

    A needless and completely unforced own goal. Actually, worse, It ranks with May calling the Tories the Nasty Party. Gratuitously handing the opposition a stick to beat them with.

    I wouldn't want Farage to always use weasel words, like the others, but there's a big difference between that and jumping in with complete, tactless stupidity.

    1. Yes..."a Ratner moment" is a perfect description.

  8. I suspect it was an off the cuff comment to get himself off the hook in an interview. I have met him a couple of times and he has always said something daft.
    I suppose it is the price he pays for not being an oily shyster like the hand picked lib/lab/con slimeballs.
    It is difficult to fathom why he hasn't made more capital out of the flooding. Perhaps he will redeem himself in the next couple of days.
    Hope springs eternal and all that.

  9. Paul, I haven't addressed your point about Nigel's approach to the floods... I didn't think that I needed to...

    I don't actually know what his reason's is/are... What I do know is that Richard's excellent response is great coming from gim and Christopher Booker, I joined in with his comments and complimented him on the approach (not that Richard cares what I think... :) ), but he is not the leader of a political party, he is a scientist.

    Imagine that you are such a leader, und you feel that it is important to win elections, and so far you haven't had a great deal of success at national level...

    Do you not think that perhaps whatever you privately believe, that it is a good idea to start yelling that UKIP thinks that the Environment Agency is useless... Not the best way to get people on side... is it?

    Better to say something like... I don't know to what extent the environment agency is responsible, we need to look into this once the floods have receded.


    You have of course witnessed the reaction to yonder Pickles...

    1. He is not going to win any elections by being another lib/lab/con party. The bovine masses are not awake enough to hear what he is saying.
      He needs to drop big bombshells every chance he gets and he has just missed launching one.
      Waiting until the floods have receded will not wake anybody up.
      He needs lots of noise and publicity every chance he gets.
      The reaction to pickles is just guffawing because what he said was bullshit. It does make a nice smokescreen to distract the conversation away from the EU though - funny that.

    2. Do you not think that perhaps whatever you privately believe, that it is a good idea to start yelling that UKIP thinks that the Environment Agency is useless... Not the best way to get people on side... is it?

      Better to say something like... I don't know to what extent the environment agency is responsible, we need to look into this once the floods have receded.



      Your strawman is that he should say the EA is useless. No one has suggested that. What was needed was Farage to explain that the EU rules we have to obey has made this flooding far worse than it otherwise would have been.

      For an experienced MEP to claim, despite being shown hard evidence and provided with links to documentation, that he doesn't know to what extent the EA is bound by EU law is frankly pathetic. He looks utterly clueless.

      A number of UKIP people asked Richard's permission to use his research and he immediately agreed. But all Farage has done is first call for money from overseas aid to be spent here, then called for a civil defence corps to be recreated, then called for a public enquiry. He has done nothing to explain why this flooding is so bad and who made it so - despite it being the EU he claims to want to destroy.

      You're dancing on a pin head trying to make excuses for a man who is behaving erratically and jumping from issue to issue like a hyperactive grasshopper.

    3. At this point I went and watched what Farage ACTUALLY SAID!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

      @4 minutes...

      You lot really are selective and WRONG.

    4. You mean he managed to bury a brief single reference to the EU at the end of an interview which no-one will remember. Instead they will remember the point about overseas aid which he concentrated on and that is what he wants as proved here:

      Ironically the chap in the question in the picture - Ravinder Singh was the one who first brought up the EU dimension during this meeting not Farage.

      Farage also had his article in the Express last week where he failed to mention the EU at all - despite the exposure being national.

      And then he makes these comments quoted above:

      "I don’t know the truth to the extent the Environment Agency is now bound by European Union rules and laws, I just don’t know, which is why we need to have a public inquiry."

      This from a leader of the main Eurosceptic party in the UK who has had all the evidence handed to him on a plate.

      UKIP has quite clearly dropped the ball big time. Rather making the case, making the running and leading the debate Farage has chosen to downgrade the EU dimension to a pitiful sentence in one interview, to the extent that all the newspapers can safely ignore the EU aspect. Great.

      It's bad enough trying to get newspapers to highlight the hidden hand of the EU without having to fight UKIP on the same issue as well.

    5. @4 minutes...

      "The Environment Agency have failed completely, they seem to want to follow European Union directives to the letter of the law, and really they should be putting the interests of farmers and householders, before that of beetles and voles."

      Has any other politician said anything like that? We've heard loads of schmutter, from the LibLabCON... about "Global Warming"... ideological b0ll0cks... loads of that, but nothing resembling any criticism of the fat a*rse and his quango...

      It is unfortunate that some very bright people are inside that organisation, but as Richard and Christopher have pointed out ad nauseam... the current bunch of spivs that run government, the EC, and the Westminster Executive have got a different agenda, and it doesn't involve protecting the interests of "farmers and householders" (You could also add tourism firms, people that provide all sorts of peculiar little services and products in that beautiful area)...

      I spent many holidays there as a boy, and I took my kids there a couple of times, and it (when properly managed) is a wonderful place.

  10. And as I suggested to Paul Williams...

    If you can do better...

    Get on with it!

    1. The thing is that we can do better, and frequently do so. On this blog, from AM, WfW, and EURef, you will see a constant stream of high quality research and comment, which far outshines the lacklustre and derivative UKIP website.

      Our intervention, therefore, is largely directed to seeking performance improvements from UKIP, in the interests of us all. Even the slightest of criticism, however, is invariably met with a defensive wall of hostility and not the least attempt to improve.

      In the absence of a positive response from UKIP, therefore (and goodness, we've all tried in and out of the party to get improvement), there is little more we can do than make up for the inadequacies of UKIP in our own ways - which we do - and note the declining performance of a party that once held such promise.

    2. I agree Richard...

      But the criticism is not "slight" is it?

      The criticism is relentless, abusive and not constructive in any way whatsoever, even if the detail is frequently accurate and valid...

      Where you lot "witter" to use a term I have heard somewhere...

      Nigel does, and he does it sometimes badly and sometimes well.

      Whatever his faults, I know that he doesn't want to be the PM, like Dave does... I don't believe that he wants to do anything like that... I don't believe that he thinks that he would "be good at it", to coin a phrase that I heard somewhere(??)

      But there will come a time, particularly with the current upsurge, which I hope will increase after the next elections in May, that will attract some people that are actually good... I can't think where they will come from... Certainly not the LibLabCON, that's for sure.

    3. The criticism may not be "slight" but then the failings are not slight either, are they? And neither is the response ever positive, is it?

      Then. all we get from you is "whatever his faults", a very tenuous admission that Farage might be slightly less than perfect, but only slightly so.

      But the fact is that neither Farage nor UKIP in general is particularly good at responding to criticism - any criticism, however framed. It seems the only response we are allowed is unconditional adulation.

      And as long as that is the prevailing ethos in the Party, then you will be lucky to have anyone of real quality to work for the party for any length of time. For those that try, there is usually only one outcome.

    4. This comment has been removed by the author.

    5. Well then Richard... Better get a move on...

      Perhaps you should put 600 of your finest and ever so perfect supporters, up for election on the Harrogate ticket...

      We can measure your performance as the leader of a political movement against the success or failure of UKIP at the next general election... Notably the first general election that UKIP will be entering with Farage as leader.

      I wish you the best, and I hope you do well.

    6. We would not waste our time and efforts in such an exercise of narrow tribalism ... as well you know. Those that partake in the electoral process are the guardians of the status quo, which is why we have chosen the route of creating a political movement.

      Had you even a limited understanding of the dynamics of political change, you would appreciate that this was a more productive use of resource, and would not be indulging in facile challenges that would have use driving up the same cul de sac in which UKIP is currently parked.

    7. "Had you even a limited understanding of the dynamics of political change, you would appreciate that this was a more productive use of resource, and would not be indulging in facile challenges that would have use driving up the same cul de sac in which UKIP is currently parked."

      You are way off the mark... Your resort to verbal abuse proves my argument.


  11. "I don’t know the truth to the extent the Environment Agency is now bound by European Union rules and laws, I just don’t know, which is why we need to have a public inquiry"

    For the leader of Ukip, who has been an MEP for fifteen years to say that above is unbelievable. That typifies Ukip's approach - and that of Farage - it just shows they know not that about which they should.

    To the comment excusing Farage for not immediately setting the record straight, I would point out that he would not have had to do so in the form of a rant - all he had to do was hold a press conference and explain quietly and factually how and why the EU influence has had the effect it has. That would have had great effect, but instead he had to go for a soundbite. Of course, he would have had to show an understanding of the subject matter -but I digress.

    As has been noted elsewhere, I too take no delight in criticising Farage and Ukip - unfortunately they ask for said criticism! All those that are blindly proposing to vote Ukip, that robotically promote the Ukip line, obviously also have no understanding of democracy nor politics - and that includes Batten, Nuttall, Congdon et all, who have all said something stupid in days gone by!

  12. And of course, WfW you have never said anything stupid... Not even at public meetings...

    I'm out of here, you are welcome to stick with Junius and all the other sore headed idiots that think that is more to be had moaning and moaning....

    1. Am I an idiot for disagreeing with you or the benighted NF?

    2. @Right_writes, WfW is not the leader of a political party and there is a difference between saying something stupid (if WfW ever has) and demonstrating a wilful lack of ability to argue against the EU despite being the leader of a Eurosceptic party.

      The tone of your comments illustrate clearly that more loyalty is being shown by yourself to a political party than to the cause itself – even in the face of overwhelming evidence that the party is reneging on the reasons for its existence.

      What is being forgotten is WfW, Richard, myself (in some respects) and many others speak from bitter experience – we’ve been there done that. Adopting ostrich-like behaviour does not alter the fact that UKIP is coming up short.

      If you want to support, unequivocally, a party where the leader completely undermines his own supporters, then fine. If you want to call me an idiot then fine – it doesn’t alter facts. No hard feelings my end.

    3. I have not called you an idiot or WfW either Paul... I just believe that the voters have to have an alternative...

      You can criticise and snipe from the sidelines all you like, and some,will agree, some will disagree, I sometimes agree myself.

      I have kept your feed on my RSS reader, because I have always considered you to be fairly balanced, and you don't rip me to shreds if I disagree with you. I dropped AM, WfW and RN, because they are totally implacable in their vehement opposition to everything UKIP.... I don't really care why, or for what reason... But you have been a bit less trenchant. I know that I am missing some good stuff, especially on Richard's site, but that will have to be my loss.

      I am not always right, and my moniker doesn't mean that I think that... It was a bit of a poor choice... But it means that this "man of the right" is writing... Mostly rubbish, but then I am not a politician of any kind, so it doesn't matter what I write.

      But here is the nub... Running a political party is like herding cats, and sooner or later someone has to act, or speak, or sack someone... whatever.

      Since Nigel has retaken the leadership he has done some stupid things, said some stupid things, but he has also done a great deal of good... The party is beginning to be attacked by its enemies in a really significant way... Remember Gandhi's little homily... I reckon that UKIP is at the third stage... You may disagree.

      But here is the real point...

      Herding cats is difficult within a political party, but with reference to people like you and the others mentioned above and other people that I have not mentioned, and know nothing of... Who (I am sure) have some very valid opinions and probably some relevant beefs with UKIP... Are actually so disparate that there IS NO POSSIBILITY of ever getting what we all want.

      There are some people in UKIP that I really cannot take, including some of the high-ups... I think that some of them are bad choices, they will probably be yesterday's men too, if and when Nigel goes off them.

      But warts and all, there is a logo and a nationally known figure.... That (was it?) 80% of the party voted for in the last leadership election... I doubt whether any of the triumvirate that lead the LibLabCON have that much support. And that is something for the great unwashed (and I don't mean that disparagingly)... People that might read the Sun on their way to work, and come home shagged out and turn on the TV News, and that is as far as their interest goes.... It gives them something recognisable to vote for.


      Now, regarding the Harrogate Agenda... I think that it is brilliant, unfortunately sickness (a real problem for me) prevented me from attending the initial meeting, even though I paid to be one of the original signatories...

      It is simple, to the point and will no doubt resonate somewhere...

      But I am guessing that it won't be in any of our lifetimes. Richard even made a point of the fact that the concept, from the Chartist Movement (which did put candidates up for election)... Had no success before it was disbanded... Although within fifty years, most of the objectives were met, albeit in a non-threatening way.

      So here I am with a balance in my hand...

      I have UKIP on one side, and I have a bunch of cats and the Harrogate Agenda on the other...


    4. @right writes. Our fight with the EU is like a recent game of rugby between Ireland and the All Blacks. Ireland were 19 nil up 15 minutes into the game, a position that has only ever been reversed once previously in the history of Test rugby. This is where we all feel at present with the EU, 19 nil down with seemingly no hope.
      But let’s look at the factors that drove the All Blacks on to win that game. The All blacks had won all their games that year and a win in this last game would make them the first team in the professional era to go an entire season without a loss. It had taken a monumental effort to get to the point to have the opportunity and they didn’t want to blow it even though Ireland were playing out of their skin. The important qualities demonstrated in the fight back were team work; trust in their fellow teammates, and a self-belief they would prevail. These are the qualities we will need to win out over the EU. If UKIP continue to be the one man rugby team with the ball always passed to Nigel Farage we have no hope. That try the All Blacks scored with 20 seconds left in the game took 1minute 20 seconds and all but 2 players played the ball in that last passage of play, one being the Captain Richie McCaw. Team work, trust, belief and involvement; these are the factors that will get us across the line.

    5. Well PeterMG... That is precisely my point... The people that I am engaging with, seem to be deserting the ship just as it looks like it is rattling parts the LibLabCON, particularly the CON men.

      They are all going off in different directions, and suggesting that the best captain of UKIP is a failure.

      Yet so far, he has not even led the party into a general election yet, so I reckon that you and the others (some of whom are notably deranged in their gratuitous attacks on Farage), might be less judgemental.

  13. Sadly I agree with all you have said and I am a member of UKIP out of desperation ! If only we could dump this leader and find someone who was up to the job !!

    Thanks for the truth - although it hurts !

    1. Thanks anon...truth does indeed hurt, I wrote the post very reluctantly but felt it necessary.

    2. I have just let my membership lapse... how can you answer, truthfully when canvassing, any question on UKIP policy without recourse to " wait and see what Nigel says tomorrow ".

    3. Yes, is reminded of Camerons we will not let matters rest there regarding Lisbon. Of course he did precisely that.

  14. It is very disappointing that Nigel Farage has not made more of the EU dimension on this disaster in Somerset. He has an open goal, others have done all the research for him, it’s in the public domain, they want him to use it, and yet it’s been a damp squib. It’s been an ideal opportunity to stick it to all the main parties who share in equal amounts the blame for this yet nothing. What is wrong with the man? You just don’t get many opportunities such as this to drive home the EU dimension and they must not be wasted. There is a ready audience out there willing to listen, but to come out with “charity begins at home” is not the way forward. He may be correct on charity but we expect the leader of a political party that say they are dedicated to leaving the EU to use these golden opportunities, and in this instance to demonstrate that the Environment Agency was doing the dirty work of the EU with decision making taking no account of local people. This is not democracy, but it is in a nutshell what our politics has become. It demonstrates just how our Westminster claque has hived off responsibility for any decision making to unelected quangos, many of whom take their orders direct from Brussels. Seldom though do they get caught out so spectacularly.

    We expect Nigel Farage to demonstrate that he is informed and understands how the EU is ruining Europe, not just tell us it is so. We can work that out for ourselves. We need Nigel to start going for the jugular and to stop pulling hairs out. By the way he needs to get over himself over those have criticised him for inaction, swallow his pride and put country first. That is if he is truly serious.

    1. I see Bishop Hill may have uncovered some conspiracy of collusion between Labour and the environment agency to discredit the Government. If true this needs exposing. Even more reason for Farage to being going for the Jugular and taking advantage of this extraordinary opportunity.

  15. Its a shame really because I see UKIP as the last possible brake we can all apply before we all go off the cliff.
    Will it have to come to that before the public actually wake up to what's happening to them.
    Unfortunately its looking that way.


    1. I have long been of the view that the UK has to integrate further before we exit in order to force people to "wake up". It’s like sacrificing the Rook to win Checkmate.

      Fortunately with Redding's comments yesterday and the recent draft treaty published we are getting there.

      Our political class may want to hide the EU’s intentions but the EU has no desire to whatsoever. And therein lies our exit.

    2. "I have long been of the view that the UK has to integrate further before we exit in order to force people to "wake up"."

      The problem with that approach BF is that the current exit door will long have disappeared behind the wall of the next treaty, that is currently being cooked up, as is often pointed out by RN, by the commissars...

    3. @Jabba the Cat I believe that the exit cannot be removed, and is part of the Geneva convention on making treaties. The Key is the EU just doesn’t believe anyone will use it and believe in their own power to scupper attempts to force EU referendums.

  16. A lot of people are suspicious that UKIP has turned attention from its purpose, which is the EU and associated problems, and is more interested in becoming a protest vote depository along the lines of the LibDems, and with no clear outlook.

  17. Unfortunately UKIP in moving away from its original purpose, i.e. expose the EU threat to UK sovereignty and campaign for withdrawal, has fallen into the "one policy party trap" and tried to mirror the LibabCon in having an opinion on everything.

    However, UKIP clearly does not have the people or resources in order to compete. Where is the UKIP Environment spokesperson? All we ever hear is Farage but the 'good ole Nige' line is wearing thin, he not doing well at interviews, his weaknesses have been identified and come the real thing his 'shoot from the hip' style will get him crucified by the likes of Neil, Humphreys, Paxman and others.

    It is the well researched articles by Booker, North and others that UKIP should be exploiting but like the floods issue it is no use raising the matter 6 months down the line when the political bubble will have moved on.

    Like many i also see UKIP as the only party I can vote for but fear that the breakthrough needed is not going to happen any time soon simply because Farage is too high profile. We hardly ever hear from LibLabCon MEPs but with UKIP there appears to be no one else.

  18. I agree, cause before party and certainly before Farage. I remember when Malcolm Wood, Farage's presence in the South West came to our Yeovil branch and proclaimed in a booming voice he would deal with the devil if it would get us out of the EU. I pointed out to him that in Scotland the devil was called Old Nick so what we do if he morphed into the other Nick, Nick Griffin. Answer came there none.

  19. I don't quite get the affiliation of this blog. Are you Sunni or Shia UKIP?

  20. Well, having read all the above I can see that I shall just have to, in May, put my 'X' against the "Harromate" candidate.

  21. To my mind, the problem we have here is that there are two faces of the Eurosceptic movement who are incapable of playing nicely together.

    Before the howling begins, let me state that I am not levelling criticism at either side in the "Nigel Farage is the anti-christ no he's the second coming" debate.

    I am trying to take an objective view outside of the partisan rants that are so often seen in the comments of blog posts such this.

    To go back to my opening statement: the Eurosceptic movement has polarised into two factions. On the one side, we have Nigel Farage and UKIP, on the other we have for want of a better collective noun the Harromates.

    UKIP is a political party - immature, rough round the edges and lead by a charismatic individual. The Harromates are deep political thinkers and researchers. They have a common aim: to secure an exit for Britain from the EU (I reject totally the idea that UKIP have abandoned that position).

    The charismatic invidual and his party have a moderately good understanding of mass media communication and how to package a message in digestible chunks for the evening news.

    The Harromates are very good at producing detailed, in-depth analysis and expressing said analysis in informed and lengthy comments.

    It's not difficult to see why these two factions diverge. It has often been quoted that Nigel "doesn't do detail" - but the Harromates revel in detail. So, we have a classic collision of personality types.

    The problem is further compounded by the fact that the charismatic personality type will gain publicity easily, the bookish (not an insult) thinkers won't. And to compound matters, the thinkers carefully thought through positions are not useful when engaging with the media as they are too complex and too long to be encapsulated in the kind of simple language necessary to capture the public interest.

    All in all, the twain shall never meet.

    Was Farage right not to highlight the EU dimension to the flooding crisis? I don't know. But I do know a couple of things. One, when Christopher Booker and RN highlighted this, I emailed a friend of mine who is a senior member of the party (a serving MEP whom I'm not going to name as this is my argument not his) to bring to his attention CB's article in the Telegraph. I was copied in on a string of email communications which demonstrated that UKIP was indeed aware of the extent of the EU involvement in defining flood policy upto and including Nigel Farage.

    You will no doubt be asking "if they knew, why didn't they shout it from the rooftops?" The second thing I know is that during an interview of Mr. Farage by the BBC which I was directed to in the email communications I received from the party, when Mr. Farage mentioned the EU's role the interviewer expressed incredulity - "surely you can't be saying this is the fault of the EU as well?" in a "heard it all before and it's SOOOOOO boring" tone of voice indicating an immediate and total lack of interest.

    Many will say "perfect opportunity to bang the drum" - I say maybe the drum can be banged too loudly and too often and that sometimes, discretion is a more effective weapon in a long term war. If the interviewer is bored by the message, would it ever get air time?

    1. "...on the other we have for want of a better collective noun the Harromates."

      Yes Tony, I thought that was one of my better warblings...

      I think you made some very good points, but the most important point is that the "Harromates" are not prepared to put up or shut up...

      I just took my life in my hands and ventured onto Richard's domain, and there he is describing Nigel as the "village idiot".

      On the one hand his research is as you say, comprehensive and potentially useful, but on the other hand his shrill rantings become ever more crass.

    2. The problem is that the charismatic types know how to engage people as they have good interpersonal skills.

      The likes of RN (see his reply to me below for an example) are "village idiots" in that realm, and no doubt don't even recognise their disability in this area and the fact that without redressing it, they are doomed to be unheard by the majority essential to bring about their intended outcome.

  22. @ Tony Leatham So, what you are suggesting is that Farage "does a Cameron" and avoids "banging on about Europe"? We cannot have a leader of an anti-EU party referring to the effect of the EU on our nation ... his interviewers might get bored. Sheesh!

    1. Did I say that? No, I don't think I did, so "Sheesh!" yourself.

      Read my last paragraph again and do try and be objective - I know you find it hard when it comes to Mr. Farage.

    2. @Tony Leatham Just how many opportunities need to go begging before you too will question Farage’s judgement. The Floods of the Summerset levels has been a god given opportunity to drag the whole rotten political establishment through the mud. It must be taken. It’s a far better subject than immigration which is always divisive. The flooding makes the EU, the greens, so called environmentalists all look foolish. Chris Smith has been allowed to get away with blaming the treasury for his department vandalism. Maybe the trouble is no one in UKIP has had to work for this golden opportunity so you just don’t recognise it for what it is. Another leadership failure.

      I have to say its you guys that are living in the fool’s paradise. All Farage has to say to avoid the boring chat is go to our website to check the details…….but oh hold on…..UKIP’s web site is a detail free zone.

      At this very point in our history this country needs leaders who are hot on detail. We don’t need plonkers such as Cameron, millipede and the clog head. No we those who want to know the detail, who are able to trip up the press with some detail and someone who like the rest of us has an in built scepticism of experts. Jack the Lad down the pub is only goes so far, and to my mind is being over done.

    3. Sigh. Attitudes like this will *NEVER* advance the cause. It would be marvellous if your view of what an effective leader is had any chance of ever leading anything. But in the early years of the 21st Century, it takes a different skill set to engage the public. And until the Harromates get their way (which will be long after I'm dead), then public support is necessary.

      Just because you believe this is a God given opporutnity does not mean everybody must also feel that way.

      If I'm honest, I tend to agree with you - that it *IS* a good opportunity to highlight the failings of the EU. But I'm not trying to have this debate in the full glare of publicity day in and day out whilst trying to plan campaigns and communications out beyond the next election and until I am, I don't feel qualified to express an opinion with your certainty.

      You must remember that the strident voices of RN, WfW, AM etc. are completely ignored by UKIP precisely because they are strident, impractical and self-defeating - and I know this for a certainty because I asked a spefic question of people in the party who know

    4. Tony, a couple of things. For all this supposed expertise in reaching out and engaging people, UKIP is still failing to break 13% on average nationally, despite a significantly higher percentage of voters saying they want to leave the EU. For a charismatic, Nigel Farage has a staggering track record of turning people off and making them want to walk away once they get to know him, something a huge number of former UKIP officials and members will attest to.

      The thing you don't seem to have grasped is that any politician can spin a line, they long have and they frequently continue to do so. But more so than ever before, politicians are being challenged to show what they say is more than a soundbite. You need to have people who understand the detail and Nigel, by self admission, doesn't. Which is why after sounding off, there is nothing to back up his media assault. Polls how shown that compared to last year, voters increasingly don't trust Farage and I would argue this is exactly why. There's no beef inside the packaging.

      It also demonstrates the immaturity and amateur nature of UKIP if party sources are telling you that the detail dug up by our blogs is impractical and self defeating. It seems to have escaped your attention that unlike UKIP we are not campaigning for votes as a political party. We understand very well how to present 10 word arguments, develop soundbites, capture and retain public attention using a platform, because several of us have done just that in our professional lives. But at this time we don't have to. The difference is, if we did have to we could back claims with hard evidence under scrutiny. It pays to know your subject before sounding off in the public space. That too many of UKIP's senior members treat not doing so as a badge of honour should tell you a great deal.

      That these UKIP party folk you refer to cannot think even that deeply or are so blinkered as to not recognise the difference between political campaigning and blogging, shows UKIP is constrained by its leadership's own limitations. I guess it is comforting to me that those disagreeing with me are self evidently poor performers.

      Over the last year UKIP has had a mountain of opportunity to develop messages and drip them into public discourse. They have only succeeded in pushing an anti-immigration agenda that appeals to the lowest common denominator and is actually self defeating and full of holes. No wonder UKIP's polling numbers since last May are down and Farage is less appealing than he was when people knew him less.

    5. Many points well made.

      And I have just one question in return: if you have the expertise to deliver the message and back it with integrity and research that stands up to intense scrutiny, why aren't you guys getting the message out there? What are your plans for bringing about, in a reasonable time frame, an exit from the EU?

      I'm in my late forties and I would prefer to see restoration of our sovereignty before I die.Right now, despite the obvious failings of Farage et al, they are the only game in town.

    6. The message is out there. It is spreading in spite of the media's best efforts to stifle it and UKIP to ignore it. We need a coordinated EUsceptic, non party campaign that builds up awareness and support, then applies pressure that cannot be ignored by MPs, so a referendum can take place, similar to what happened in Norway.

      While you say UKIP is the only game in town, it will not achieve the goal because party politics will never achieve something of this kind. UKIP is already showing why by diluting its message and focusing its attention on electoral ambitions, rather than showing people how the issues that most frustrate them are controlled by the EU and cannot be addressed unless Britain is at least run by the British.

    7. Perhaps I'm slow to understand here, but what message are you referring to? The message that being in the EU is bad for Britain? If that's the case, I don't know why you say UKIP are ignoring it?

      PR is not a discipline I am very familiar with - my epxertise is more in the digital arena and PR is usually something I commission others to do - but I do know that a professionally run PR campaign should have a set of measurable objectives. The usual benchmark would be mentions in relevant media. How are you measuring the spread of the message? I'm guessing not by column inches devoted to discussion of our membership of the EU because whilst an increase in volume is good, it cannot be definitively attributed to your efforts and not those of other parties, say UKIP, for instance. Therefore, because if it cannot be attributed to you, that is not an adequate campaign metric so I'm intrigued to know how you measure your success?

      I am sympathetic to the idea that a movement as opposed to a political party is the best vehicle for bringing about change (though it would be brave to say it's the only vehicle and that political parties cannot work). But in my opinion, and I believe I have a right to express an opinion on this subject, for the movement to succeed it will need structure - the amorphous nature of a few political bloggers who often fall out with one another is definitely doomed to failure. The structure should include a memorable name (and sorry to say "The Harrogate Agenda" would not be on my list of contenders for it), a logo, a website, a number of spokespeople with expertise in numerous areas and a figurehead of considerable personal gravitas (and that immediately excludes Richard North - I'm not saying he doesn't have a considerable role to play, but I AM saying he would be a far worse figurehead than Mr. Farage is for UKIP).

      It should also have a clear set of objectives, and very clear strategies that can be disseminated by a widespread membership so that, for example, when asked the question "how do you propose to make ths hoped-for change?" everyone in the movement should have a clear answer. I think it's fair to say that no such movement exists yet?

      So, in the absence of such a movement, I still believe that UKIP are the only game in town. Flawed, ugly, rife with tensions for sure and not meeting all of my criteria, but it's probably the only potentially viable route open to Eurosceptics right now.

  23. @Tony Leatham Insofar as our voices are "strident", it is because they were completely ignored by UKIP, even when they were expressed internally. UKIP routinely ignores all criticisms, from whatever source, and regardless of how it is couched. Therefore, the only way to talk to the party is with a megaphone.

    However, such of our writing as is about UKIP is not necessarily directed at the deaf ears of UKIP cultists but to our own audiences, of which many disagree with the assumption that UKIP has a God-given right to represent the anti-EU movement.

    UKIP members are free to listen into a debate which is much wider than their narrow preoccupations, but if they choose to stick their heads in the (tribal) sands, that is their loss, not ours. We have a wider constituency that is actually interested in getting out of the EU, rather than winning party brownie points..

    1. You reveal a number of things about yourself in this reply.

      First off, it's become clear to me, and I think others, that for you, the only way to achieve Brexit is your way. You will not countenance debate (remember that unedifying little spat you had with tallbloke a while back?) and you make it clear you feel that you and only you are equipped to decide upon a course of action. You shut down discussion at every turn with a thoroughly disagreeable attitude and approach.

      What you don't realise (and this is because in my opinion, you lack any form of social skills and don't even recognise the need for them) is that your pugnacious, take no prisoners, I'm-the-only-one-that-counts attitude completely alienates you. Why the hell SHOULD UKIP or anybody for that matter listen to you? You do not have a right to force your opinions on anyone, but you don't understand that do you? You just blame them for not rolling over and proclaiming you the second coming and it seems to me that it clearly rankles you that Mr. Farage is popular and you, frankly, are not. You do not have the first idea how to begin persuading people of the viability of your arguments without resorting to the kind of vicious, unpleasant debate killing rhetoric you have used over a period of years on anybody you consider is not kowtowing to you.

      And you can't even see that despite the undoubted validity of what you say, the message in and of itself is not enough - people have to be persuaded not brow beaten.

      I'd love to see this "wider constituency" you proclaim - exactly how many turned up at your last public meeting?

      You, sir, are a lost cause. You do more harm than good with the force of your personality, and inability to understand people.

      Cue nasty, unpleasant, vicious reply.......

    2. @Tony Leatham I think you need to familiarise yourself with the concept of passive aggression, and acknowledge that the aggression displayed differs more in style than substance. I simply prefer to be more open and above board in my approach.

      Typically, you display exactly the same characteristics of which you accuse me - the assumption that you (and those whom you support) are right, and I am wrong. Thus, you position Tallbloke in the right, and myself in the wrong, with the clear implication that I was seeking to impose my views on the debate, rather than Tallbloke seeking to do just that.

      As your "argument" progresses, though, it becomes apparent that it it is one long ad hominem, without in any way addressing any real issues, complaining of my attitude and demonstrating your very obvious resentment of it.

      With that, straw men come in legions, to make up a fantasy argument, long departed from any semblance of the reality that I could recognise.

      Then, in a classic deployment of passive aggression, you seek to insulate yourself from your own impertinence - in making assessments of my character which are not only wrong, but frankly insulting - by predicting a "nasty, unpleasant, vicious reply".

      Clearly, in an issue -free attack on me, which is personal, insulting, and full of innuendo and false assumptions, the irony of your own statement obviously escapes you.

      But what also escapes you is that I have long ceased caring what the UKIP cultists think - insofar as they can think - or say. My concern is for the majority who would agree that we should leave the EU and who are not and will never become UKIP supporters.

      Those are amongst the 5-6000 people who are attracted to my blog every day, to what I write as an individual without the benefit of a political party platform or media support.

      How many people do you attract on your blog, Mr Leatham?

      Please do feel free to be offended - this is evidently something you are quite good at, as well as being spectacularly offensive in your own right.

    3. For an academic with an avowed expertise in research, you seem to have formed some wildly inaccurate opinions.

      I did not and do not claim to have all, any or even some of the answers. I did not say that you are wrong.

      What I did say, and repeat, is that (to adopt your phrase), passive aggression is a complete non-starter as an engagement mechanism.

      I do not remember what your argument with tallbloke was about but I do recall vividly you expressing that you and only someone with your years of experience of whatever (in other words, only you) are sufficiently informed to have an opinion and everybody else is a waste of space.

      If you feel that I insult you by holding a mirror to your comments then so be it - but my opinion of you has been built over many years reading your blog and the fact you never miss an opportunity to demonstrate that passive aggression on anybody who has the termerity to suggest they have an alternative opinion.

      If you find it personal and insulting, then good. Read what you say about other people - you are personal and so insulting so often that you thoroughly deserve to be made to feel the way you no doubt have made many other people feel.

      You claim disinterest in UKIP - if they are the irrelevance you claim, then I would suggest that the content of your blog very clearly says something entirely different.

      You have 5000 people read your blog everyday. I would suggest they're the same 5000 everyday - so you've made a big impression on the National consciousness in your years of blogging and researching and writing books.

      If UKIP poll 15% of the votes at the next election, how many times bigger is the number they have engaged with? God, how that must piss you off.

      And for the record, I am not a UKIP cultist. I am an inactive member. I see their faults, but I also see yours, which you clearly do not.

      BTW, I'm not offended - I expected worse from you and was prepared for it, though it does seem that I've annoyed you.

    4. My colleague always cautions me not to fight with the chimney sweep, and for obvious reasons. But, for the marginal entertainment that you have afforded me, as light relief at the end of a gruelling research project, it is perhaps worth the cost of a little extra laundry.

      But you flatter yourself if you think your lightweight meanderings could even get close to insulting me. You do not have the skill, or the intellectual grasp.

      Keep to your delusions, though. Your impenetrable sense of rectitude will provide you with a temporary barrier against the hard reality that you are supporting a losing creed that is lining itself up to fail.

      Enjoy it while it lasts.

    5. This comment has been removed by the author.

    6. You're not very good at holding the thread of an argument together are you? You delude yourself into seeing what you want to see. For example, in your last response you tell me I flatter myself if I feel that I had insulted you.

      But in the last response but one, you say my "attack" *WAS* insulting.

      And then you bring out your own favourite insult - to declaim my intellectual grasp. Oh yes, here we go again - RIchard North backed into a corner when confronted by his own brand of "passive aggression" and he launches the usual broadside: if you don't agree with me, you're too thick to see the logic.

      I'd hate to be you - life must be a constant source of frustration and disappointment.

  24. This guy is listening Richard...