Friday, 30 November 2012

Rotherham: second, Middlesbrough: second, Croydon: third

Yesterday's by-elections in Rotherham, Middlesbrough and Croydon North saw fantastic results for UKIP with two second's and a third.

In Rotherham UKIP's Jane Collins came a very strong second, head and shoulders above the rest of the pack and securing almost half the Labour vote.  To put this into context, Rotherham has returned a Labour MP at every single election since 1933.  The worrying result in Rotherham is that three extremist parties took third, fourth and sixth places - the BNP, Respect and the English Democrats (that said, I know the former-Lib Dem who stood for the English Democrats and he has no truck with the extremist element of his party).  The Lib Dems (remember them?) came an embarrassing eighth with less than 10% of the UKIP vote and lost their deposit.  The turnout was just 33.8% which is appalling for a mid-term by-election and suggests Labour voters stayed at home to punish their party.

Rotherham
Lab9,966
UKIP4,648
BNP1,804
Respect1,778
Con1,157
Eng Dem703
Simon Copley582
Lib Dem451
Trade Union & Socialist281
Paul Dickson51
EDL29
Turnout: 33.8%

In Middlesbrough UKIP's Richard Elvin came second, some 318 votes clear of the third-placed Lib Dem and 927 votes clear of the Tory candidate.  Middlesbrough is another safe Labour seat and Labour candidate Andy McDonald secured over 60% of the vote.  The Tory only managed to beat the fringe Peace Party candidate by 3 votes.

Middlesbrough
Lab10,201
UKIP1,990
Lib Dem1,672
Con1,063
Peace1,060
BNP328
Trade Union & Socialist277
Mark Heslehurst275
Turnout: 25.9%

In Croydon North UKIP's Winston McKenzie managed a comfortable third, 540 votes clear of the Lib Dem candidate and 2,737 votes behind the second-placed Tory.  Labour retained this safe seat with an increased majority.

Croydon North
Lab15,898
Con4,137
UKIP1,400
Lib Dem860
Green855
Respect707
Christian Peoples' Alliance192
National Front161
Communist119
Loony110
911 Was an Inside Job66
Young Peoples' Party63
Turnout: 26.4%

Wednesday, 28 November 2012

Vote UKIP in Rotherham, Croydon and Middlesbrough


UKIP is contesting three by-elections tomorrow in Rotherham, Croydon and Middlesbrough.

The highest profile is of course the Rotherham by-election where Jane Collins was already expected to rock the boat before the child snatchers at Rotherham social services took three children off their foster parents because they were UKIP members.  UKIP has gone up in the polls, bookies have shortened the odds of a UKIP win and the party received 750 new membership applications over the last few days.  It seems slightly distasteful to be profiting from the misfortune of three innocent children and their foster parents but this is the reaction of the general public, it's not been planned or instigated by the party and if it means we get a UKIP MP to help stop this sort of thing happening again then at least something positive has come out of it.  Rotherham has been Labour since 1930 and this vacancy only came up because their previous troughing Labour MP, Denis McShane, admitted stealing from the taxpayer.

Richard Elvin is UKIP's candidate for Middlsebrough, another pretty safe Labour seat which has become vacant following the death of the incumbent Labour MP, Sir Stuart Bell.

The final candidate is Winston McKenzie who is standing in Croydon North.  This is another Labour seat which has become vacant after the incumbent Labour MP, Malcolm Wicks, died.  Winston hit the news this week for his stupid comments on gay adoption which he has since withdrawn and which has led to him being removed from his post as a UKIP spokesman.  Despite his antiquated views on gay adoption Winston is a passionate campaigner, an energising speaker and committed community worker.

YI Elections Officer election

We've already brought you election statements for Young Independence Chairman and Events officer and there's one final statement to publish: Gareth Shanks for elections officer.

We asked both Gareth and his opponent, Ross Taylor, to send us a statement for the website.  Unfortunately, only Gareth sent a statement so here it is:
We need to be looking outwards, not inwards, council seats are the seeds which very well might one day create UKIP strong holds!

I have worked with Jonathan Arnott on his PCC campaign, done countless days of leafleting and campaigning, both for UKIP campaigns and for the Doncaster mayoral referendum, furthermore I have organized and will be running a YI election action day for the Rotherham by-election. I believe I have enough experience from within my region of Yorkshire to hold this post as well as more than enough enthusiasm!

Things I will bring to YI if elected:
  • Help and motivate YI members to become more involved in elections at every level.
  • Concentrate on local elections as these are the key to building up local support for National and EU elections. 
  • To give individuals who may not have a local branch the ability to stand for local councils via supplying an election pack containing leaflet designs, advice and support for the election.
  • Having a YI regional head in charge of campaigning for that area.

Tuesday, 27 November 2012

Forget the Tories - it's Labour Defectors We Need

Just when it seemed it couldn't get any better, news comes from UKIP's treasurer, Stuart Wheeler, that he has been in contact with no less than eight Tory MPs who may be thinking of defecting to UKIP.

Without wishing to poor cold water on our jubilation or disparage Mr Wheeler's efforts, Tory defections, actual or potential,  at this time are something of a double-edged sword: how UKIP is perceived by the British public is very much in a state of flux, and we have a golden opportunity to cement it in the minds of the public as, in Nigel Farage's words, "neither right wing or left wing", instead of just a repository for disgruntled Tories.

Clearly if we are seen as "the Tory Party of old" then this could potentially severely limit our appeal in working class constituencies like Rotherham, and therefore cap our appeal generally. Moreover, it would mean that the rise of UKIP would risk weakening the Tories but leaving Labour very much intact.

Whereas the Tory party is now a pale shadow of it's former self, bitterly divided with a demoralised activist base and membership in free-fall, the Labour movement is a far more dangerous enemy. It is very much signed up to the metropolitan liberal cultural agenda just as the Tories and Liberal Democrats are, but it is even more authoritarian, pro EU, pro state control and pro political correctness. Because when in power the Labour party deliberately set about "sovietising" British culture through high state spending, vastly increased public sector employment and high immigration, it's agenda and client groups are now deeply entrenched in British society. Not only does this give the Labour Party a natural "floor" to it's support, it also allows the broad Left's Gramscian cultural agenda to be persued ruthlessly irrespective of whether the Labour Party is in our out of power, as we have seen in Rotherham.

However, Labour strategy came very much at the expense of it's traditional voting base - the indigenous working class, who are in large measure repelled by it. As someone brilliantly put it, within one generation in the eyes of the Labour Party the working class went from "the salt of the Earth to the scum of the Earth". The party is now dangerously isolated from much of it's base it took for granted for so long, with no obvious route back.

Thus, a high profile defection or two from the Labour Party to UKIP would be both a devastating blow to the party and a major step forward for UKIP: we would be confirmed as a party for everyone outside of the arrogant and remote metropolitan liberal elite, and there would be almost no limit to our potential appeal. Moreover, Labour does still retain a few MP's like Kate Hoey, Frank Field and Austin Mitchell from it's ancient Christian socialist tradition from when it famously "owed more to Methodism than it did to Marx". Sadly that tradition seems to have a very bleak future in what is now a party wedded very much to cultural marxist ideas, and it may not take that much for a Labour MP or two to jump ship, just as many did in the 1980s to form the SDP in response to the party's then dominant economic marxism.

Get on that phone, Mr. Wheeler!



Monday, 26 November 2012

Stuart Wheeler in talks with 8 potential defectors

Party Treasurer, Stuart Wheeler, has told the Telegraph that he has had secret meetings with 8 Tory MPs who wanted to talk to him about defecting to UKIP.

No names have been mentioned and Wheeler is sworn to secrecy but he did say that the details of all eight were passed on to Nigel Farage and that it was likely that "a few" could be persuaded to jump ship.

All that is needed to break the stranglehold of the 2½ party system is for a couple of MPs to grow a pair and jump ship, showing the electorate that UKIP is credible and capable of challenging the cosy LibLabCon death grip on the democratic process.

Getting Stuart Wheeler on board really was one of Farage's best achievements.

Winston gets it very wrong on gay adoption

UKIP's culture spokesman and PPC for the upcoming Croydon North by-election, Winston McKenzie, has hit the papers again but for all the wrong reasons this time.

McKenzie has likened placing children with gay adoptive parents to child abuse, saying that it deprives them of the chance to grow up with a normal life.  This is absolutely not what the party's line is and certainly isn't a view shared by most UKIP members.

Winston is entitled to his personal opinions on gay couples adopting and if his faith is such that he believes it to be wrong then that is his prerogative but it is entirely inappropriate for him to make such comments during an election campaign when the world's press is looking at the party in the wake of the Rotherham baby snatcher scandal and if he does feel a burning desire to make this type of comment then he should be making it abundantly clear that he is speaking for himself only and not associating the rest of the membership with his views.

To sum up UKIP's position on gay couples adopting in a nutshell: a child needs a loving, secure and stable home and if a gay couple can provide that then that is in the best interests of the child.

Given a choice between a child having no mum and dad and two mums or two dads, you would hope that the majority of people would welcome a gay couple adopting a child that might otherwise spend their formative years in an institution or being passed around a succession of foster parents.  Every child has a right to feel safe and secure and to be bought up by people who care about them and depriving them of that opportunity because a 2,000 year old book about a man who lives in the sky who made the world in 6 days (but not dinosaurs because they hadn't been invented back then) says it's wrong is child abuse, not giving them two parents of the same sex.

I used to like Winston despite his colourful political history because he was full of energy and infectious enthusiasm but I've lost all respect for him over this.  In his role as spokesman on culture Winston has done much to promote a positive relationship with our friends in the Commonwealth but this appalling lack of judgement means he has to go.

Fabricant calls for a Tory/UKIP pact

Tory MP, Michael Fabricant. has told David Cameron that the Tories should form a pact with UKIP before the next election to stop them losing members and votes to the party.

Fabricant estimates that UKIP could cost the Tories 20-40 marginal constituencies but dismisses UKIP's chances of actually winning a Westminster seat.  He suggests promising an EU referendum in the run up to the election in return for which UKIP wouldn't stand against Conservative MPs.

What Fabricant fails to understand - and for an advisor on grassroots campaigns this should be quite worrying for the Tories - is that UKIP isn't just about the EU.  A Cameron promise is worthless anyway as we've already seen but even assuming he could be trusted to hold a referendum if he promised one, what would be in this deal for UKIP?  A referendum on the EU?  Great, so how does that reduce taxes and simplify the tax system, protect civil liberties, provide adequate funding for the armed forces, reduce NHS bureaucracy, control immigration, bring down electricity prices and establish energy security, establish a Commonwealth free trade area, put the justice back into the criminal justice system or restore democracy to England?  If UKIP was a single-issue pressure group then it might be tempting but leaving the EU is only one piece in a big purple and yellow jigsaw.

Nigel Farage has already told Fabricant that there will be no deal with the Tories and that after Cameron's refusal, in the wake of the Rotherham child catcher scandal, to retract his 2006 comment that UKIP are fruitcakes, loonies and closet racists "it's war".  Fabricant responded by saying it would be a couple of years away and he never says never.  Well, we can say it for him: there will NEVER be a deal with the Tories.

Considering UKIP isn't a threat to the Tories, an awful lot of Tories seem to be worried enough to want to do a deal with us.

Saturday, 24 November 2012

A day of outrage against Rotherham social services

There has been almost universal condemnation of Labour-run Rotherham Metropolitan Borough Council's social services taking three children off their foster parents because of their UKIP membership.

Whilst some Labour activists have taken to Twitter to denounce UKIP as racists and extremists, the response from members and supporters of all parties has been largely united in condemning what has happened in Rotherham.  Red Ed Miliband has expressed his disappointment and said that there should be an investigation but David Cameron has been less than forthcoming, leaving Michael Gove to issue the Tories' condemnation.  Cameron was asked in a radio interview about his accusation in 2006 that UKIP are fruitcakes, loonies and closet racists and he appeared to backtrack on that slur but Downing Street later retracted his retraction, confirming that David Cameron still thinks UKIP members are fruitcakes, loonies and closet racists.

Meanwhile, a Labour councillor on Telford & Wrekin Council - another Labour-run council - took to Twitter to condemn what happened in Rotherham but at the same time said that UKIP members and supporters were "right wing xenophobes".  When a local radio presenter took an interest he denied having said it and demanded an apology from UKIP Telford & Wrekin who had been seeking clarification on why he thought their members hated or were scared of foreigners.


The Labour leader of Rotherham MBC has told the media that there will be an urgent investigation into what has happened.

The Actions of Rotherham Social Services show why Labour is Vunerable

Like most people, UKIP voters or otherwise, I was literally struck speechless with revulsion at the actions of Rotherham social services in taking away children from a fostering couple on the basis of their political views. Whether the couple supported UKIP, Tory, Labour, Lib Dem, Green or Respect doesn't matter - it is a truly terrifying, Orwellian act.

I imagine the second emotion felt by many of us in UKIP, and certainly myself, was fear. One day, they may come for my own daughter.

Here is the hard Left in all it's authoritarian ugliness. Coming as I do from neighbouring Sheffield, I recognise instantly it's distinctive face, bringing back a host of 30 year old unpleasant memories. It appears little has changed since I left.

In trying to understand what has happened, one thing that has been largely (but not entirely: h/t @WelshTory et al.) overlooked is that fact that the couple were former Labour voters.

Obviously only the people engaged in this vile action know their true motives, but I would be willing to bet that has a great deal to do with it. What keeps the authoritarian left up at night in a cold sweat  is the thought that, one day, the proles (as they truly see them) will rebel. That they will no longer like what they are given, shut up and be content to vote Labour every five years.

Which brings us to UKIP. UKIP are the hard left's worst nightmare - a party with no class baggage, seen as patriotic, firm but fair on immigration with a message of self-reliance tempered by social justice and conservatism.  That message chimes extremely well with the aspirations of a great many working class voters. But it is very bad news indeed for the local government nomenclatura, not least because of the threat to potential or actual sources of European funding and all those nice jobs for the boys and girls that result from them.

It would be unfair to associate the entire Labour Party with the actions of Rotherham Council social services, but nor should it be denied that those actions have their roots within the now dominant strand of Politically Correct thought within the broader Labour movement. The Labour Party knows it is highly vunerable to this charge but it's freedom of manoeuvre is limited because it's modern funding base lies with politically correct, white collars unions such as Unite. As such, it is dangerously isolated from it's base.

In the North, Labour is ripe to fall. Let's initiate a Northern Strategy.

Friday, 23 November 2012

Rotherham Social Services remove children from foster parents for being UKIP members

A couple in South Yorkshire have had their foster children taken off them because they are UKIP members.

Yeah, right.
According to the Telegraph, the unnamed couple fostered three young children (one of which is a baby) who settled in well.  So well that the two eldest children even started calling their foster parents mum and dad.  But social services decided that their membership of UKIP meant they had racist views on immigration and were therefore unfit to care for the three black children and they were removed from their home.

This is absolutely outrageous and this social worker needs to be sacked.  Not only does the social worker need to be sacked but every one of their colleagues and managers who supported the decision (it's not one that will have been made unilaterally) needs to be sacked.  Even if it means sacking the entire social services department and starting again. These disgusting lowlifes who conspired to take three young children from a loving home because of their own ignorance and intolerance should never work in social services again.

The couple want to remain anonymous to protect the children they fostered but the council responsible for this is named as Labour-controlled Rotherham where an election is being held next week to replace the disgraced former Labour MP, Denis McShane, who has been forced to resign after admitting to fraudulently misusing taxpayers' money.  Needless to say, if Jane Collins becomes UKIP's first MP next week you can expect some serious questions being asked about Rotherham social services in Westminster.

In the meantime, you can contact the relevant department on 01709 823987.

Update:
Rotherham Metropolitan Borough Council are on Twitter - @RMBCPress. You might like to let them know how you feel about them right now.

Thursday, 22 November 2012

Cameron capitulates on EU budget

Oh so predictably, David Cameron has capitulated on the EU budget after holding out for a freeze 2.9% increase for literally days.

Tit
According to the Guardian, Cameron has accepted that the UK's contribution to the EU budget will increase to pay for the destitute eastern and south-eastern European countries desperate to suckle at the EU's teat.  So not only has Cameron already thrown away his ace card by saying that we will never leave the EU while he's in charge no matter what they do to us, he's now said that he expects us to pay more into the EU's wasteful, fraud-ridden budget just two days ahead of the meeting where he's supposed to be demanding a cut in the EU budget.

As my swimming buddy succinctly put it this morning: "what a tit".

Bury By-elections

Two by-elections were held in Bury yesterday ...

North Manor Ward
7 rejected out of 2417
Turnout 29%
Tory1324
Labour643
UKIP (Peter E Entwistle)251
Green126
LibDem93

Church Ward
15 rejected out of 2823
Turnout 32.5%
Tory1371
Labour1108
UKIP (Steve Evans)309
LibDem35

YI Events Officer candidate statements

Not to be sidelined by the battle to be Young Independence chairman, the two candidates for YI events officer tell us why YI members should vote for them ...

Rob Comley says ...

If elected, I will:
  • Get as many people from all over the UK involved in YI events as possible, merging the YI gap around the country.
  • Have AT LEAST one major event in each third of the country. We all want to see more events, but we need to be realistic. The budget will not let us jump from two major events to six over night!
  • Set up an events committee.
  • Help set up a National YI conference in 2013.
  • Organise a YI weekend away, campaign and training days, and fundraising events.
  • Travel across the country to attend events.
  • Encourage bonding. Socialising should not just be about politics. We all know what each others views are. It should be about having fun.
  • Work with universities to get the hardworking members involved in events, as well as helping them to set up their own.
  • Improve advertising of social events.
  • Set up a social events newsletter, as well as an events calendar on the UKIP website.
  • Work with the LGBT to organise events.
Reece Warren says ...
  • Regional Rotation. Give ALL YI members an equal chance of attending events!
  • UNITE YI members from across the country!
  • Arrange ACCOMMODATION for National Events as well as the event itself in order to give YI members the cheapest, quickest and simplest ways of attending an event!
  • Hold at least TWO National Events per calendar year in differing locations!
  • To truly represent ALL YI members from all ends of the country, and to truly utilise your ideas for events too!

    Vote Reece Warren.
    For A Fresh Approach To YI.
Both candidates have similar ideas - more events, more fun, move around the country.  Rob adds to that with working with university groups and the UKIP LGBT group.  Reece would arrange accommodation for national events.  Both candidates seem to be fairly evenly matched but Rob has the edge on Reece at the moment.

Wednesday, 21 November 2012

UKIP Ramsey in the Financial Times

UKIP has a good write-up in the Financial Times tonight focussing on UKIP-controlled Ramsey Town Council and the frankly inspirational town, district and county councillor, Peter Reeve.

The Financial Times has a paywall but you can register for free and get 8 articles a month without having to pay and I'd definitely recommend making this one of your eight.
It is the time of year when the Christmas lights lend a festive air to Ramsey’s medieval high street.

But since the UK Independence Party gained control of the town council in this rural Cambridgeshire town – a first for the eurosceptic party – locals have even more reason to feel pride in the display: they have been putting up the lights themselves.
In deference to their publicly declared support for the Tories they've managed to avoid quoting any Ramsey residents that are UKIP supporters despite more than half the councillors on Ramsey Town Council being UKIP but it's a surprisingly positive article nonetheless.

Young Independence elections

Elections for the officers of UKIP's youth wing, Young Independence, are upon us and two posts are being contested - elections officer and chairman.

Ross Taylor and Gareth Shanks are both standing for YI elections officer, an increasingly important role for UKIP thanks to the vital support YI members have been giving to election campaigns all over the country.

But the main event is (naturally) the election of a chairman and the two candidates for that post are Matthew Smith and Olly Neville.

This will be the last YI election I will be eligible to vote in, being officially relegated to the old gits section (35 and above) of the party in January so I'm going to follow this one with some interest, not least because any election involving Olly Neville is bound to be entertaining.

The two candidates for chairman are setting out their stalls at opposite ends of the room - Matthew Smith is pitching himself as "the serious choice" whilst Olly Neville is ... Olly Neville.  Matthew's website is a bit light on content, as is his Facebook page.  Olly's website is pretty comprehensive and his Facebook page is fairly active.  Matthew cites his experience through self-employment and masterminding the target seat campaign as YI elections officer as qualifications for the role of chairman.  Olly says he will stop making gaffes on Twitter and make YI fun to be a part of.

He may be a walking, talking diplomatic incident but Olly is the man with the plan and his campaign is head and shoulders over the competition already.  Matthew may pull something compelling out of the bag when he updates his website with the promised reasons to vote for him but if he doesn't do it quickly he's going to lag even further behind.

Update:
As Mr Shanks just pointed out on Twitter, there's also a contest for events officer that wasn't mentioned in the original email between Reece Warren and Rob Comley.

Monday, 19 November 2012

EU may agree budget by excluding UK

The EU is apparently considering pressing ahead with a budget agreement that includes every member state apart from the UK.  Quite how this would be legal or how it would work in practical terms is a mystery but anyone expecting Cameron to finally put his foot down and say enough is enough will be bitterly disappointed.  As usual.
Odds of a referendum? This much.
Speaking at the CBI conference in central London, Mr Cameron said he was "a good European" but signalled he was ready to take a tough line in negotiations on the 2014-20 budget.

"I make absolutely no apologies for standing up strongly for Britain in Europe on some of our priorities," Mr Cameron said.

Speaking about the harsh cuts Britain has faced, the Prime Minister said: "It is simply not credible to go to Europe and say we have made all these difficult decisions at home but when it comes to the European budget we are going to see it go up and up and up.

"I think I have got the people of Europe on my side in arguing that we should stop picking their pockets and spending more and more money through the EU budget, particularly when so many parts of the European budget are not well spent," he stated.
So Cameron is "a good European" and he makes "no apologies for standing up strongly for Britain in Europe".  Next thing you know he'll be telling us the Pope is Catholic and that bears carry out their ablutions amongst the trees.  After backtracking on a promised referendum when he came to power and then whipping his MPs to deny us a referendum earlier this year, does anyone seriously doubt that Cast Iron Dave is anything but an EU sockpuppet?  As for "many parts" of the EU budget being "not well spent" - we're talking about 3.9% of  the EU's budget of around £105bn for last year (over £4bn) being lost to fraud and error and the EU's own auditors refusing to sign off their accounts for the 18th year in a row.  This isn't a minor blip involving a few quid, it's a major systemic failure resulting in a sum of money being wasted roughly equivalent to the entire Icelandic government's 2011 budget!

And how have his colleagues responded to this statement of undying love for the EU from their leader?  Ken Clarke says that Cameron's "real terms freeze" (ie. a 2.9% increase) is only a "starting point" and he could accept an increase.  Could usually implies some semblance of doubt of which there is none - Cameron will agree to an outrageous increase in the EU budget.  Boris Johnson drifted off into some private fantasy about Cameron dressing up as Margaret Thatcher and saying no to the EU and David Davies - once one of the Conservative Party's most vocal eurosceptics - said that Cameron should give another Cast Iron Guarantee of a referendum after the next election and pass a law to make sure it happens.  There's already a law (the EU Act) that was supposed to give us a referendum when there was a new transfer of sovereignty to the EU but which was usefully worded so that the government of the day decides whether they feel like giving us a referendum and of course they don't so they haven't so another one would be quite pointless.  Aside from Cameron's utter determination not to allow us to vote ourselves out of the EU, should such a law actually make it onto the statute books any incoming LibLabCon government could (and probably would) simply repeal it because no parliament can bind its successors.

Opinion poll after opinion poll shows that most of us want out of the EU, it is morally and democratically indefensible to deny us the referendum the majority of the electorate clearly want.

Our Friends In The North

Our great successes last week in Corby and the PCC elections have given us all in the party the feeling of building momentum, and those outside the party debating the nature of the UKIP surge.

It was simply irresistible not to hang out for a time on ConservativeHome and observe the post-mortem. One almost felt pity for a myopic and increasingly unsure and demoralised Tory party which is still desperately behind the curve of what is really happening. Several contributors to the comment threads said that a vote for UKIP was nothing more than a "protest vote", whereas Tim Montgomerie on Twitter bewailed the splitting of the political Right, just as the Left is becoming more united.

What rubbish. The greatest divide in current society is not between the old 'Right' and 'Left' but between an arrogant Metropolitan elite that controls the three other main parties on one side and the vast majority of the British people and UKIP on the other. Old habits die hard, of course, and voting habits are so ingrained that even now they still reflect the old tribal traditions. That said, the more perceptive amongst the electorate increasingly perceive the new order of things, which is why UKIP is increasingly drawing its voting strength from Labour, not just Tory, defectors.

The recent demise of Denis McShame (sic) and  forthcoming by-election in Rotherham will therefore give us a great opportunity not only to build on our momentum but to hone a 'Northern strategy' aimed at building and widening our support.

At first glance UKIP's adherence to free market economics would look politically completely toxic in former industrial areas such as Rotherham, but that is less true than one might imagine: a capitalist message  is much less distrusted coming from us than from the Tory party, which is indelibly associated with class exploitation and whose motives will always be deemed highly suspect.

In presenting our policies in areas like Rotherham, the trick must be to explain why our brand of capitalism will actually lead to greater social justice. For example,  our policy on higher income tax exemptions and abolition on employer's National Insurance to spur job creation can clearly be presented in this context. Even our "flat tax" policy can be presented as a system much less easy to game, meaning we will have less abominations such as the super-wealthy paying 10% tax rates.

On social policy, clearly UKIPs policies on immigration, crime and community are vote-winners in working-class communities adversely affected both socially and economically by high immigration and social breakdown. Beyond those specific concerns, traditional working-class communities tend to be naturally socially conservative and find the smug, narcissistic liberalism of the Metropolitan elite actively repellant, and of course their instinctive patriotism chimes well with our anti-EU message.

In understanding the changing nature of politics in Britain, Labour is actually far more ahead of the game than the flaying Tories or Lib Dem's. The party has, at least partially, understood the need to reconnect with their base after it's near total neglect in the New Labour years. Hence the invention of Blue Labour by Maurice Glassman, with an agenda of "Faith, Family and Flag".

However, Labour has two major problems to deal with. It is unlikely to be trusted on the touchstone issue of immigration, and secondly the priorities of it's funding base - the mostly white-collar, mostly public sector unions - does not dovetail perfectly with the agenda of working class communities in the North or elsewhere who feel so abandoned. That said, Labour, with its 55% of the polls in the North, would seem impregnable. (But then they used to say that about another Labour fiefdom - Scotland.) As for the Tories, they are regarded as beyond the pale, and now the Lib Dems are strongly tainted by association.

So how much effort should UKIP expend on Northern regions like South Yorkshire where, as the saying goes, the Labour vote is weighed rather than counted? Firstly, there is a strong moral case for UKIP to make a major effort in the North. Northern political culture has long been disfigured by the politics of class envy and a chippiness towards the South. Capitalism is associated with Toryism and while that remains the case large areas of the  North will remain "sovietised", embittered and economically stagnant. UKIP has a unique opportunity to bring a capitalist message without class baggage that might, just might, be listened to.

The second reason is one of base political calculation. If UKIP can peel off a fragment of Labour's support, it could lead to the party supplanting the Tories as the North's second party. This could lead in turn to a total collapse of the Tory vote share in Northern constituencies as natural  Tory voters see UKIP as the only viable alternative to overwhelming Labour hegemony. Already exiled from Wales and Scotland, the result would be the collapse of the Tories as a creditable national party.

Everyone is talking about UKIP now, but the commentariat still see us largely as a "right wing" rump of discontented Tories, perhaps still nothing more than angry old men enjoying a brief Indian summer. For that reason, a good result in the seemingly infertile ground of Rotherham really would register as a major political earthquake.


Friday, 16 November 2012

Election results

Some great results for UKIP today in three by-elections and the Police & Crime Commissioner elections.

The headline election was, of course, the Corby by-election triggered by the resignation of Louise Mensch who blames herself for the collapse of the Tories.  Apparently it's all down to her resignation - if she hadn't resigned the Tories would have still been popular.  Poor delusional lamb.  UKIP hasn't contested Corby before but Margot Parker took 14% of the vote to come a clear third.  The Lib Dems bombed and lost their deposit.  The BNP vote also collapsed and it looks like fellow extremists, the English Democrats, have benefited from that.  The Greens did even worse than the BNP and the English Democrats which is an achievement in itself.

Chris Cassidy put in an excellent performance in Manchester Central, coming fourth in the by-election there just 4 votes behind the third-placed Tory.  Manchester used to be a Lib Dem stronghold but they finished up with just 10% of the Labour vote.  Turnout was about 18% which is thought to be the lowest turnout in a parliamentary by-election since the second war.

Simon Ziegler also got an excellent result in Cardiff South & Penarth, a Labour safe seat since 1945.  He came fifth with over 6% of the vote behind Labour, Tories, the Lib Dems and Plaid Cymru.

Today also saw the first (and hopefully last) Police & Crime Commissioner elections.  The turnout was appalling, failing to reach more than 14.5% average across the country and one polling station in Wales had a turnout of zero.  Northamptonshire had the highest turnout with just 20%.  With such low turnouts it's hard to see the results as anything other than illegitimate.  The number of independents elected is reassuring but the majority were won by Labour and the Tories meaning most of our police forces have been reduced to arms of those two political parties.  It's unclear at the moment whether UKIP came third or fourth in terms of vote share in the PCC elections with one result still outstanding but what is clear is that UKIP have comprehensively beaten the Lib Dems in terms of results and are undeniably the UK's third party.

The best news of the day, though, has to be John Prescott losing to a Tory in his own back yard.  The election for Humberside Police was widely believed to be a straight two-horse race between UKIP's Godfrey Bloom MEP and millionaire socialist class warrior Lord John Prescott.  The look on his face is almost worth the estimated £75-100m cost of running these sham elections.  Almost ...


Thursday, 15 November 2012

By-elections in Corby, Manchester and Cardiff

Although the Police & Crime Commissioners will undoubtedly dominate the news today, there are three by-elections being contested at the same time.

Margot Parker is UKIP's candidate for the Corby & East Northants by-election, made vacant by the resignation of Tory pin-up girl, Louise Mensch to spend more time with her family.  Barring a last gasp effort by the Tory faithful it is very likely that UKIP will upset the apple cart with this by-election.

Cllr Chris Cassidy is also contesting a council by-election for Manchester Central whilst Simon Zeigler is contesting Cardiff South & Penarth.

Good luck to everyone involved!

Don't forget to vote for your UKIP Police & Crime Commissioner today

Good luck to all the UKIP candidates in the Police and Crime Commissioner elections today.

Would you really want someone like
this in charge of your police force?
The very idea of electing Police and Crime Commissioners is fundamentally wrong (especially allowing candidates to stand on a party ticket) because it will politicise the police force, turn decision-making into a PR exercise and waste money but ... if we have to have them then we can at least ensure that the Police and Crime Commissioners that we do have are the right sort of people with the right sort of attitude hence UKIP standing candidates today.

UKIP has 24 candidates standing today and you can see their mugshots and election statements on the UKIP website.

Tuesday, 13 November 2012

Boris Island is More Than an Airport - it's a Statement of Intent


The great Douglas Carswell blogged brilliantly yesterday about the small-minded navel-gazing of our pygmy political class.

Right on cue, we hear that MP's of all parties are strongly opposed to the so-called "Boris Island" air port in the Thames Estuary, with only 16% supporting it.

They just don't get it, do they? Boris Island is more than just an airport, it is a statement of intent as to our future direction: to become once again a great global trading nation.

Symbols matter, and at a time of national despond there is a strong case in factoring in the morale effect of big, bold projects like this which may capture the public's imagination and allow us the to reshape our identity in the process. Who knows, a successful flagship project like this could lead to similar grand ventures to revitalise our great ports in the future - perhaps Liverpool could in time become the new Rotterdam, connected to the channel tunnel by a Berne gauge railway capable of carrying lorries on trains, as the visionary entrepreneur Andrew Gritten put forward a few years ago.

Returning to Boris Island and Heathrow, there is also the question of  aesthetics to consider. Heathrow is ugly, chaotic and congested - an appalling shop window for people arriving into the United Kingdom which scream THIRD WORLD DUMP. How many business contracts have we lost out purely on the basis of the conscious or subconscious sense of demoralisation business people get on arriving at Heathrow, particularly when compared to the gleaming glass of Frankfurt or Schiphol?

Expanding Heathrow is not surprisingly, the option most favoured by LibLabCon MP's. It is perhaps the perfect metaphor for our political class. It is the small-minded option, the timid option, the myopic option, the demoralising option, the spatchcocked and retrofitted option, the clumsy option, and, not least, the ugly option.

Membership of the European Union has made our democratic representatives psychologically small people. Shorn as they are of much responsibility and little more than local councillors in an impressive gothic building, our MPs have lost the courage to think big. They have lost confidence in themselves and, more importantly, in the nation. Their very smallness of character condemns us to mediocrity and decline.

Until as a nation we elect men and women with the true vision and courage to carve out a new identity and lead us into a very different future, we will continue our descent.


Sunday, 11 November 2012

Europe's Grey Future

Recently I was lucky enough to visit Wittenberg, situated  in what we of a certain age still think of as "East" Germany in the region of Saxony-Anhalt, just 90 minutes from Berlin by train.

Wittenberg is, of course, famous for being the place where Martin Luther nailed his 95 theses to the door of the church, railing as he did against the inequities of an  over-mighty, pan-European and authoritarian organisation, just as we do in our time.

Visiting the town where Luther, one of my personal heroes, changed European history forever was the realisation of a long-held ambition of mine, but the most powerful impression the town left on me was for a much sadder and poignant reason.

It seemed almost entirely depopulated.

As we walked through the town centre towards the church I remarked to my sister that it looked like a neutron bomb had gone off. Yes, it was a Sunday morning, but the place seemed gripped by an unnatural, deathly quiet and devoid of people, apart for a few, largely elderly, couples walking down the street. Many shops were bordered up and paint peeled off the buildings. The sense of abandonment, decay and air of quiet despair was palpable.

This is the Germany nobody talks about. If we are honest with ourselves, we tend to be rather envious of the Germans, with their superb, seemingly invincible economic and industrial machine, capable of absorbing any shocks and overcoming any challenges.  But away from the vibrancy and optimism of Berlin, large parts of the old East lie semi-derelict and partially abandoned.

Germany has, of course, notoriously low birth rates, but here demographic trends have been greatly amplified by the effects of German reunification: the young just left the poverty of the East for a better future, leaving the old and immobile to fend for themselves as best they could. My sister remarked how terribly cruel life had been for that generation, having been born, probably, in the depressed 1930s, grown up during the rise of Nazism and the Second World War, and then spent their best adult years under  the Soviet occupation and communist oppression. Now, having finally been liberated, they were too old to exploit the opportunities and were abandoned by the younger people seeking a better life.

The old East Germany is an extreme case, but I would advise anyone who wants to see the effects of an ageing society to visit it, and see Europe's future. It is a very sobering one.

Although we are vaguely aware that Europe is an ageing society, no one likes to think of their own mortality, and in any case politicians tend to think only within the context of the short-term electoral cycle. It is therefore not surprising that the vast amount of discussion about European economic weakness covers the travails of the Euro, the implication being that everything can be solved by technocratic solutions in the relatively short term. The reality is that it is in large part due to long term demographic trends with below replacement rate birth rates in most countries. Germany itself is about to go into net population decline, to be followed soon after by other European countries with similarly very low birth rates. It is not too much to say that Euro crisis masks a much deeper crisis of the failure of the European social model, as the journalist Mark Steyn has long foreseen. Indeed, it is not hard to foresee that, in order to replace it's own ageing workforce, the German economic motor will suck in large numbers of youth from the already crippled Southern European countries, leaving them in an even more desperate situation than they are now.

Not all European countries have declining populations of course - the UK's population is expected to expand to an astonishing 70 million in the medium term and overtake Germany's by 2040. But this is largely fuelled by immigration or significantly higher birth-rates from ethnic minorities. Many people, particularly on the Left, like to gloss over the cultural tensions that this changing demographic balance causes and see immigration as the solution to the economic issues of an ageing society.  Indeed it can be, but only if immigrants wish to integrate into a host society willing to accept them, and are themselves economically productive.

Many immigrant groups are productive, of course, and really do want to integrate, and there is no doubt that in many cases the doom-sayers on immigration have been proved wrong, particularly about the issue of  race.  Indeed, the growth of racial tolerance and successful integration of many ethnic minorities in the United Kingdom has been perhaps the greatest cultural success stories of recent decades. However, that should not blind us to the fact that much immigration and demographic growth, particularly that from conservative islamic countries, comes from cultures that seem to have no intention of integrating and are not particularly economically productive: instead the fatalism and sectarianism of much (but not all) of Islamic thought seems to offer the worst of all worlds - a rise in sectarian tensions and challenge to our Western way of life, and a further economic drain on an already ageing society. The multicultural lie that all cultures were both  of equal worth and compatible with each other was always socially unaffordable. It is now plainly economically unaffordable also.

The third demographic trend we have to confront is another one we feel uncomfortable in discussing, namely that birth rates are often highest in those sections of society least able to provide for their children. This is in part due to the benefits system, which means that people on welfare have no incentive to stop breeding. The result is that proportionately high numbers of children are brought into families and sub-cultures of low expectation and attainment, and so the cycle of dependency continues from generation to generation. Admittedly some of the Tories in government such as Iain Duncan-Smith have tried to address some of these issues, but they are hampered, of course, by the wretched Liberal Democrats.

Of course, leaving the European Union would help us address some of these problems, not least by furthering our economic potential and stopping free movement within Europe (now, insanely, to be expanded to include Bulgaria and Romania). But even if we leave, serious demographic issues will still confront us. It is plain that we have to become brave enough to talk honestly about all these trends in society. The culture of dishonesty and suspension of reality that we allowed to flourish during the long boom years has still not being disgarded. Those years are now behind us and will probably never return.

We seem to be left with the following choices:

1. Stop mass immigration and accept that, as a consequence, our living standards and prospects may decline as our society continues to age.
2. Accept that a strong influx of young, dynamic and talented people maybe necessary if we are sustain a healthy age structure to society, but that we have every right as a society to discriminate in favour of those cultures that are both productive and likely to integrate, and against those that are neither.
3. Radically reform the welfare and tax system to favour children being born and brought up in the best environment and culture possible, which includes strong support for marriage and limitations of benefits such as child benefit.

Professional politicians, as always, are loath to talk openly about these issues for fear that it will make them unpopular, and consequently the lack of honesty in debate naturally stymies the acceptance by the public of solutions that will prove painful to enact. The result is that the can is kicked ever further down the road even though the day of reckoning clearly cannot be put off for much longer. Let UKIP, with its well-deserved reputation for courage and straight-talking, be the party to really grasp the nettle.

The people are ready to listen.







Windsor Tory blames UKIP for losing election

Whine, whine, those UKIP
rotters stole our votes
A Tory councillor has complained that UKIP deprived his party of victory and let a Lib Dem win in a by-election in the Royal Borough of Windsor.

Tory candidate Catherine Hollingsworth lost by 8 votes to Lib Dem Cllr Simon Werner whilst UKIP candidate, George Chamberlaine, came third with 152 votes.

Leader of Windsor Conservatives, Cllr David Burbage, shares the arrogant belief most Tories seem to have that any vote for UKIP rightfully belongs to them and has blamed UKIP for their loss.
It is unfortunate that, largely thanks to UKIP, the residents of Pinkneys Green have missed out from electing a very effective councillor in Catherine Hollingsworth. The last thing that people who voted UKIP would have wanted would be a boost to the pro-EU Lib Dems.
The last thing any UKIP voter wants is for a representative of a pro-EU party to win an election, whether that person is Lib Dem, Labour or Tory.  If the 831 people who voted for the big government, high tax, pro-EU Tories had voted for UKIP instead then the residents of Pinkneys Green could have had an effective UKIP councillor in George Chamberlaine.

Saturday, 10 November 2012

UKIP's David Gale banned from student union hustings

Derby University's students' union (UDSU) has banned UKIP Police & Crime Commissioner candidate, David Gale, from its hustings event saying that it has a "no platform" policy for UKIP.

UDSU says that UKIP is fascist for having the perfectly sensible, non-racist and extremely popular policy of freezing economic immigration for 5 years for the housing and jobs market to recover before reopening the borders with a points-based system to ensure we get the right number of people with the right skills moving here.  There is no mention of race, nationality or ethnicity in the policy because it has nothing to do with any of those - it is simply about maths and economics and they both say there are too many people pursuing too few jobs and houses.  It's not racist or fascist or offensive to say that there aren't enough jobs or houses to go round the people already living here - whatever their race, nationality or ethnicity - and that we need to stop more people from settling here until we've fixed that.
What is offensive and fascist is a taxpayer-funded organisation attempting to unduly influence an election by refusing to allow a candidate a platform because some misinformed, intolerant people disagree with their party's policy on immigration.  If you disagree with UDSU branding 16,000 members of UKIP as fascists and banning David Gale from their hustings you can contact their president, James Beckett, by email at president@udsu.co.uk or by phone on 07792 004 420.  The UDSU website says you can "contact James regarding democracy and your union" so I'm sure he'll be interested in your views on his union's approach to democracy.

Thursday, 8 November 2012

Alone? We're already Alone.


In terms of trade, Germany and Britain are meant to be. In sickness and in health, even if they can't stand the decisions their soul mate make. Well, money mates. Neither one can intentionally isolate from the other because it would lead to the financial collapse; or at least decline, of both superpowers. Therefore, the supreme leaders of Europe, i.e. The Germans, can't even consider the isolation of Britain if we were to depart from the EU. But that is the mere scrape of the UK/EU issue.

The European Commission made it perfectly clear to UKIP Deputy Leader, Paul Nuttall MEP, if we were to carry on bombarding the establishment with our (wonderful) nonsense, they will... Relegate us to the status of Switzerland. Dam that's terrifying! Wait a minute, isn't Switzerland that prosperous global nation? Being a member of the European Free Trade Association, they are part of the European Union Internal Market through the Agreement on a European Economic Area (EEA), which took effect in 1994. To every threat an EU leader makes; every attempt to scare monger our weak, apprehensive and cryptic Prime Minister, there's a cascade of good news for the vision of an Independent Britain.

What is better than Briton's being legally able to freely trade with our true allies, the Commonwealth? Whist Cameron gets some sort of thrill out of getting attacked left, right and center (and that can be taken politically and literally), Ukip can see developed market economies emerged or emerging from Australia,  New Zealand, Jamaica, Canada, South Africa, India and many more. In the case of India, we should not be wasting billions on aid just to feed their endless plight. We should not bow to an Indian government which spends “tens of billions” on defense including the £13billion deal we may have lost to the French, which makes it unacceptable to give further aid. Let's stimulate jobs and growth in India's poorest areas through interjecting trade, technical expertise and experience. In addition, Australia is crucial because it hosts a growing economy; a stable political and business environment; a skilled, well educated and multi-lingual workforce; a strategic time-zone and a competitive cost base. I can see a British-Irish union being the power house to such a bountiful friendship as we might never be one but we will, by no doubt, have a far more fruitful relationship than the present with a German lady who flirts with a Frenchmen's anti-British mantas.

I've always had a vision of a Britannia which will not be ordered and regulated by Europe, nevertheless free trade and the peace process in Europe is essential. However, the sort of EU project amplified by the Lisbon Treaty provides me a dire image of what awaits national sovereignty and identity across Europe, with Barroso's vision of a "Federal Europe" making the thought more tangible than ever.  I see it as our responsibility to lead Europe out of this disastrous and monolithic EU, and into the EFTA because - I know - that cherished 1940's spirit still lives inside us somewhere.

Wednesday, 7 November 2012

Athens is rioting again

While Angela Merkel is in London telling us we shouldn't leave the EU and cooking up the latest plan for avoiding a referendum whilst giving away as much power as possible to the EU, the Greeks are rioting once again.
The usual Syntagma Square webcam on a hotel has been taken down but there is a low quality video feed available that looks like it's being streamed off a mobile phone.
Greeks are protesting against EU-imposed austerity measures again with a vote being taken now in the Greek parliament on new crippling austerity measures which will further decimate the Greek economy and drive them further into depression.
The europhile Greek president, Antonis Samaras, says that the vote is to ensure Greece stays in the €urozone and that the alternative is to "return to the drachma and isolation".  Returning to the drachma is exactly what Greece needs - ditch the €uro for the drachma and devalue to drive up exports and domestic production.

Update:
The Greek parliament has passed the austerity bill by 153 votes to 147.

Mad Nad: The Plight of a Fighter


Nadine Vanessa Dorries. An incredible woman by far. Her early career included being a trainee nurse at Warrington General Hospital and was formally in the practice from 1978 to 1981 in both Warrington and Liverpool. Before spending a year working in a Zambian community school, where her (now divorced from) husband ran a copper mine, she became a medical representative to Ethicla Ltd throughout 1982. She climbed up and by 1987 she had founded the Company Kids Ltd providing child day-care services for working parents.  The company was sold in 1998 to BUPA, at which she served as a director of the health provider for a year.

Dorries was elected to the House of Commons at the 2005 General Election for the safe seat of Mid-Bedfordshire. As a profound believer in pro-life for babies in harmony with her profound beliefs on pro-choice for women, had soon become a notable figure through her introduction of the Private Members Bill which called for the legal abortion time limit in Great Britain to be reduced from 24 to an eventually amended 20 weeks; introducing a ten day 'cooling-off' period for women wishing to have an abortion, during which time the woman would be required to undergo counseling. It was defeated by a large margin at the time but since then Health Minister, Jeremy Hunt has recently carried his interests of the proposals back into the Commons.

Dorries is an outspoken figure who is hailed for representing the working class power of the Conservative backbench and being a leading rebel against November 2011's notorious 'three line whip' fabricated in Cameron's exceeding fear that the motion calling for a referendum on the UK's membership of the EU could have actually been passed.

Frankly, Dorries has been humiliated and kicked into the sand by the very leadership she blasted as "a bunch of posh boys" in the wake of Dorries's submission to the eye screeching, nonetheless popular TV show 'I'm a Celebrity...Get Me Out of Here'. She has been suspended from the Conservative's parliamentary whip for disregarding the fact that Chancellor of the Exchequer's budget plans are set to be stated soon (perhaps there is a political message to it: that Osborn's say is worthless to that of the European Commission - we know her). From return to Westminster, which I fear will be an early one because of the shenanigans her party, particularly Theresa May (...and Louise Mensch), have unleashed, and will see Dorries having to explain her "misconduct" to the Tory chief whip.

This shows indignity towards her status in parliament, or at least, if everyone in there have abandoned The Voter, Dorries's demotic national status. But don't belittle the reality of things and say these sanctions are out of mere concern, the Tory mantra is "Frankly, I think an MP's job is in their constituency and in the House of Commons." This, frankly May, is absolute baloney. When Boris Johnson hung off the zip wire who warned him never to do something that silly again? It was all "aww, that's so cute". (More like "Tory piƱata!") Because, frankly, the only threat Johnson brings is that of Cameron's leadership... allegedly. He has a spark which can relieve the Tories from their plight in 2015... apparently. Dorries, on the other hand, is feared to be - quite simply - the Antichrist of Conservative stability: possessing a petition which could see, if completed, the post of Conservative leader up for re-election; and leading a secret legion of backbench rebels which could instantly...turn purple.

Attending 'I'm a Celebrity...Get Me Out Of Here' is a wonderful attempt by Nadine Dorries to enhance her political platform, to discuss her ideas and values by the fire. She wants to be a human being as well as a politician - and you rarely get the two intertwined in this day and age. And if her party can't respect the means she's taking to get her message across, which her constituency voted for her to do, then frankly she's in the wrong party. I wish her well for the show and hope that these inane controversies do not blight the prospects of real success which is winning the title 'Queen of the Jungle'.

Monday, 5 November 2012

How deep are the links between the English Democrats and Tories?

It seems that Kent County Councillor, Richard Long, is living a political double life.

The Conservative Councillor for Kent Malling Rural East and solicitor lists a number of directorships in his register of interests but they aren't the interesting ones.  The interesting ones are the undeclared Company Secretary positions (which presumably means they aren't paid posts) which include:
  • English Voice Magazine Limited (the English Democrats' magazine)
  • Confederation of English Business Limited (apparently unsuccessful alternative to the CBI)
  • English Lobby (touts for discrimination cases for Tilbrook to litigate)
  • East of England Regional Executive Limited (possible "spoiler" company)
  • English Constitutional Convention (defunct joint venture between the CEP and EDP)
What makes these companies interesting?  They're all front companies for the English Democrats - a rival (albeit impotent and largely irrelevant) political party to his own Conservative Party.  Talking of the English Democrats, he holds one more English Democrats-related post:
  • The English Democrats
Now, it's not unusual for a solicitor to be a company secretary but usually it's because a small company wants the professional veneer of a proper office and a respectable professional on what passes for a board.  The English Democrats already have a solicitor as a director - their chairman, Robin Tilbrook - and Cllr Long's office is his house.  So how does a Conservative Councillor not only end up as company secretary of a rival political party and five of its front organisations but also having their registered offices at his house?  And if the posts aren't declared in the members' interests they're presumably unpaid which makes it all the more strange.  If it's not a professional arrangement then it must be a personal one.  Just what links does Cllr Long have with the party that spawned the Steve Uncles libel factory?  Or is it the other way round?  How deep are the ties between the English Democrats and the anti-English Conservative Party?

Sunday, 4 November 2012

UKIP third in Opinium/Guardian poll

UKIP is polling third ahead of the Lib Dems in yet another poll, no doubt to the disappointment of the Guardian who commissioned it.

Opinium have Labour in the lead on 41%, the Tories second on 30%, UKIP on 10% and the Lib Dems on 9%.  The Greens are languishing in fifth of the UK-wide parties on just 3% and the BNP are sixth on 1%.  The SNP are on 4% which would translate to 48% if they were a UK-wide party.  Plaid Cymru have all but disappeared into obscurity with less than 1%.

Opinium don't offer UKIP as a choice alongside the LibLabCon when asking for voting intention and when it produces graphics UKIP is lumped in with "Other" even though UKIP is out-polling the Lib Dems in every poll and accounts for half of the "Other" group.  We have criticised this behaviour by some of the polling companies and Survation Chief Executive, Damian Lyons Lowe, did the same last month.  It's utter nonsense to list the Lib Dems but not UKIP.

On the streets of Essex with the PCC Elections

So to Essex on a cold and damp Saturday to assist UKIP's candidate for Police Commissioner, Andrew Smith, on the doorsteps of Harlow.

Setting out from Hillingdon at 9.30am for an 11am meet, I tuned in to LBC radio for my trip around the northbound M25. From 10am, the Ken Livingstone and David Mellor show concentrated for an hour on the impending rise to the EU budget and even 'Red' Ken was stating that this can't be justified with austerity cuts at home!

A number of callers rang in to complain about the situation, and some said they would be voting UKIP because of the issue, which in one case brought an exasperated comment from Mellor that the party are 'Nutters' despite pretty much agreeing with our stance all the way through the show!

Buoyed up by the debate, I arrived slightly late after a number of unplanned diversions around the mass of roundabouts that make up the road system in this part of the county to be greeted by organiser Kerry Smith and the candidate. A number of activists were already in attendance whilst others, including London MEP Gerard Batten, were still making their way to the meet and were having similar difficulty with the road layout to myself.

We were quickly briefed on the situation in Essex - With a supplementary vote system* in place for the Police Commissioner elections, Labour and Conservatives have been pretty confident that their candidates will battle it out in the 'second round' and have not been as active on the ground as expected. Our task was to leaflet specific areas that UKIP had not yet touched during this campaign in order to spread the word and give Andrew a fighting chance of dislodging Labour from second place on the initial vote.Success in this objective would mean a 'head to head' with the Tories in round two.

(* - The supplementary vote system gives you a first choice and second choice vote.If no candidate gets 50% of the first choice vote, then the top two candidates from the first choice vote go forward and the second preference votes for the eliminated candidates are then allocated to the remaining two to give a winner)

There is also a council by-election going on in Toddbrook Ward at the same time, and double sided leaflets promoting both Andrew Smith and our local candidate Bill Pryor were given out to the teams hitting that part of the area.

With a biting wind cutting across the car park where we met up, Kerry sent me on my way with maps of three particular estates he wanted covered and targetted leaflets for each in their own bundles.

Target one was a predominently working class estate with small terraced houses and blocks containing four or five flats with garages set to one side and a field where kids on bikes were much in evidence despite the cold. With the letterboxes being close together, it was fairly easy to get around and I moved on to area two within an hour.

The second estate was more affluent, with a mix of semi-detached and larger properties and driveways instead of the communal garages. The wind had dropped and the sun was peeking through making for a pleasant Autumnal early afternoon
I was greeted on the doorstep by one lady who asked what the leaflets were about - When I explained that they were for the council and Police Commissioner elections and she saw the UKIP logo she commented that 'I hope you get in, you are so much better than those Tories'. She then asked what we were going to do about mass immigration - My answer regarding the five year freeze on permanent immigration whilst the system is sorted out followed by an Australian style points system gained her approval and the promise of her vote on 15th November!

With two targets completed in less than two hours, I moved on to the final map. This was a rambling estate of what appeared to be late seventies/early eighties construction and ranged from small flats all the way up to large and opulent detached properties at the far end. With the haphazard layout of the streets and closes, it was difficult to keep your bearings and the time started to drag as I was confronted with a veritable maze to navigate! One white van man called out to me not to put a leaflet through his door - I promised him it was not a pizza delivery flyer, but he was even less enthusiastic when told they were for a local election! "I don't want all that, you are all the same" came his reply. "Are you not voting then sir? If you don't vote, you are helping to cause the problem when you could be a part of the solution, don't you think?".
"Nah mate, not for me!" - I smiled as I walked off imagining him complaining down the pub about the cost of fuel and the state of the roads when he didn't even want to read a quick leaflet addressing the issues. Oh well, you win some.....

Around four thirty and with all the leaflets exhausted, I returned to the car and the trip back to Uxbridge.


Essex is often used by Political Commentators as a barometer when it comes to public opinion, and the blue collar workers of the county were credited with putting Margaret Thatcher in to power and keeping her there in the eighties. Mass defections of voters in the mid-nineties led to the Blair government, whilst gains here during the last general election were taken as an indicator that David Cameron was making ground on his way to No 10.
If UKIP poll well and can beat Labour in this bastion of the aspirational working and middle classes, it will send out a powerful message to the old establishment parties and establish us as the true voice of the people in opposition.

If you would like to get involved in the PPC election in Essex, please visit Andrew Smith's campaign site at www.smith4essex.org

Friday, 2 November 2012

Kent Police Commissioner candidate being sued by opponent

English Democrats libel factory, Steve Uncles, might finally be getting his comeuppance after independent PCC candidate, Ann Barnes, issued legal proceedings against him in the High Court for his attacks against her on Twitter.

Vote for me or we'll send the boys
round ... with a solicitors letter
Green Party chairman for Kent, Stuart Jeffrey, has already said that he is considering taking legal action against him for attacks against him where he has been called a Nazi.

Uncles has been attacking Ann Barnes and other candidates on Twitter, Facebook and on his websites.  On his "official" PCC candidate website he suggests that Barnes has been taking saunas with policemen which makes her unsuitable (the implication there would appear to be that it was a seedy encounter). He also claims that she isn't an independent candidate because her campaign manager is a Lib Dem and the Lib Dems aren't standing a candidate. The most bizarre statement of all isn't a slur though, it's the claim that the Police & Crime Commissioner is a political role and the winning candidate will make political decisions - the winning candidate has to take an oath not to be political!

Ann Barnes, it would appear, had a solicitor send a letter to Uncles warning him about his conduct and the response from Uncles was a letter from his solicitor "basically telling Ann Barnes to get real".  Presumably this solicitor would be English Democrats chairman and Essex PCC candidate, Robin Tilbrook, whose experience of defamation law can be summed up as sending out countless threats to anyone who criticises his party and losing a spurious defamation case against me.

We will be more than happy to help Ann Barnes, Stuart Jeffrey and anyone else who has been on the receiving end of one of Steve Uncles or Robin Tilbrook's attacks and threats.  There are a large number of victims of this pair over the years who will happily fill in any new victims on the facts about the English Democrats, Steve Uncles and Robin Tilbrook.