Coffee House

Ukip’s anti-Labour mission

4 February 2014

8:50 AM

4 February 2014

8:50 AM

Ukip wants to use the Wythenshawe and Sale East by-election as a way of spooking Labour into realising that it can steal votes from every party, not just the Tories. Labour is sufficiently worried to be trialling special anti-Ukip leaflets in the constituency, but behind-the-scenes senior figures still seem reasonably relaxed about the real threat that Nigel Farage’s party poses.

screen-shot-2014-02-03-at-19-45-55

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The picture (from Guido) above, though, shows that Ukip is trying to hit the two weak spots for Labour, the ones it is trying to neutralise rather than develop radical policy on: welfare and immigration. That line ‘protect your jobs and benefits’ seems to be referring to ‘benefit tourism’, but perhaps it’s also referring to Ukip’s continuing commitment (until Nigel Farage disowns it and says he’s never heard of it) to universal benefits for pensioners.

The party doesn’t really think it can beat Labour, but what it does want to do is to unsettle it in the same way as it did in Eastleigh with the Tories.

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Show comments
  • mandelson

    Thought Kay Burley got under Lord Smith of Troughtown’s skin on Sky News. He certainly confirms the observation that “Politics is showbiz for ugly people” . Anyway time for UKIP to shake the rickety old LibLabCon house of cards.

  • Agrippina

    For anyone who is considering voting for the same 3party troughers. You may like to know that a report out today by the ONS shows that 1 in 4 births here have been to a mother born elsewhere. Romanians are having more children here than they did in their beloved country. They conclude it may be because they are better supported here. Yes, by the hardworking British tax payers.

    We need to stop paying child benefits for anymore than 2kids, that may put a stop to it and get out of the EU.

  • OriginalChris
  • Smithersjones2013

    That line ‘protect your jobs and benefits’ seems to be referring to
    ‘benefit tourism’, but perhaps it’s also referring to Ukip’s continuing
    commitment (until Nigel Farage disowns it and says he’s never heard of
    it) to universal benefits for pensioners.

    Alternatively instead of letting her prejudices carry her away Izzy might like to check the unemployment figures and find that as late as November 2013 Wythenshawe sits in the top 20% (103rd out of 650) of constituencies for JSA claimants. Its hardly a surprise then that jobs and benefits will be a local issue then is it?

    http://www.parliament.uk/briefing-papers/RP13-74.pdf

    Then of course according to Mori unemployment and benefits sit in the top 7 issues concerning the public nationally (immigration is equal top with the economy).

    So if you ask me its self evident what UKIP are about with that poster and there are no particularly opaque references there.

    How Izzy then translates that into purely pensioner issues I think says more about Izzy than it does UKIP. Those of us who have followed this blog for some time know very well that Izzy has a serious hang up about universal benefits for pensioners but this increasingly evident obsession with it (seeing it in every even slightly related issue) suggests an unhealthy attitude towards such matters. . Freud and Jung no doubt would be fascinated.

    • Conway

      People need to wake up to the fact that it’s possible to have a generous welfare system that is not dependent on contributions OR unlimited immigration. We can’t afford both. I suspect if we had to restrict benefits to those who had paid in there would be a lot of whingeing.

  • BarkingAtTreehuggers

    UKIP only has one mission.
    If UKIP gained enough seats at a General Election in 2015, then UKIP would form a coalition with the Conservatives. Ergo, not a concern for the Conservatives.
    If UKIP did not gain a significant number of seats in 2015, then they would be ignored. Again, no real issue for the Conservatives.

    The UKIP mission is an entirely different one: voting UKIP in May will in effect be a vote for independence in September. The ‘business argument’ is exactly the same. The ‘people argument’ is exactly the same. The ‘result’ will be exactly the same.

    A vote *for* UKIP is a vote *against* UK independence.

    • an ex-tory voter

      “If UKIP gained enough seats at a General Election in 2015, then UKIP
      would form a coalition with the Conservatives. Ergo, not a concern for
      the Conservatives”.

      Maybe so, but it would be serious concern for the pseudo Conservatives and Europhiles currently at the helm of the Tory Party. Their EU fox would be well and truly shot and Dave (should he have survived that long) would be out of a job because UKIP will not contemplate any coalition involving him.

      • BarkingAtTreehuggers

        So Cameron is toast in any case. Who would argue with that?

        • Wessex Man

          Who cares? it’s goodbye from Call me Dave, legover and Hooky!

  • sarahsmith232

    What on earth is the ‘protect your benefits’ line? This is manipulative and low. My immediate association is ‘protect your unemployment benefits’. If they think that’ll be a vote winner for Ukip then they deserve to be wiped by Labour. They’re hoping people are not going to see how underhand they’re being by not stating whose or which benefits they’re meaning. Disappointing.

    • Denis_Cooper

      “Protect your jobs and benefits”

      Seems clear enough to me.

      • HookesLaw

        Its a lying load of dissembling cr@p. It is a dog whistle to the racists and its a dog whistle to those on benefits. When campaigning in sunny Bucks and Sussex it will not be emphasising how it intends to preserve benefits.
        UKIP are blatantly being hypocritical.

        • HookesLaw

          If you want more hypocrisy, the UKIP candidate accepted EU money to relocate his company (£1 million in debt at the time) from Manchester to Liverpool. His company subsequently went bust.

          • Wessex Man

            er Hooky, calm down, you’ve got a year and three months to defend the undefensible.

      • sarahsmith232

        which benefits? every version of? in which case then they’re trying to suck up votes from people claiming working age benefits. they’/re going to shoot themselves in the foot, they’re being underhand, opportunist and manipulative.

  • allymax bruce

    It’s an interesting situation, Isabel, what we are witnessing here is the major ground-shift in ‘traditional politics’. Once upon a time, the Tories were Right-of-Centre’, Labour were Left-of-Centre, and the Lib-Dems were the ‘supposed’ Middle-ground. Now, because of Bliar, Brown, Mandellson, Campbell, Straw, etc, the deferrence, corruption & abuse meted-out by this Labour ‘shower’, on the ‘British’ Public, has destroyed the traditioanl political ground, and voting patterns. Bliar moved his whole Labour Party to the Right, to steal typical ‘conservative’ votes. Now, David Cameron’s Conservative Party has moved his Party over to the Left, to steal back ‘said’ conservative voters. This nearly destroyed the Lib-Dems because they were left with very little ‘ground’ to represent; other than being complete and utter useless! Anyway, this has allowed for the UKIP vote to emerge; and the ‘real-Right’ Tories are back in business with Nigel. But, there is a danger to this scenario. This ‘Modernising’ of the ‘political Ground’ in ‘Britian’ could see a duopoly emerging; a two-Party system like USA; with Labour coalescing with the Lib-Dems, and the Conservatives coalescing with UKIP. In this event, (and it would only take 3 years to ‘institute’ it in the minds of the Public), I see David Cameron’s Conservative Party ruling for another 3 terms.

    • Colonel Mustard

      The element your analysis perhaps misses is the third sector, the Labour dominated quangocracy and fake charitocracy that exerts real influence on the political narrative being fought over. All three parties seem signed up to perpetuate that parasitical, tax draining, unelected, unaccountable stain on the nation.

      Also I’m not sure Blair so much moved Labour to the right as dragged some of the right of centre ground, selectively, over to the left.

      • allymax bruce

        Yes, Col’ Mustard, I agree with you; and yours is a deeper analysis of mine, and absolutely correct. Your first part analysis is concomitant to, and reliant-upon, your second part; because Bliar used exhorbitant ‘sweetners’ to prize his Common Purpose drones into ‘top positions’, now all we have is greedy troughers at the top of all our Public Institutions, so-called ‘charities’, and essential services, (police, NHS etc). I really couldn’t agree with you more on this issue, Col’. When I was in USA, I was doing my political analysis on Homelessness in Scotland, and I couldn’t believe how powerful the Third Sector was; it’s a horrendous burden to a fair & decent society. If we take the ‘British’ example of the recent Quality Care Commission debacle, where Labour-drones were functionally doing nothing but whatever their Labour Party masters/prize-money funders told them to do! Your earlier obvious example is Ashton, is another. And, RT says the EU is costing us nearly as much in EU fraud, as it is to run the ‘Institution’!

  • Kitty MLB

    I agree with the major who stated very succinctly that ‘UKIP’
    does not steal votes- voted belong to the electorate and so do political parties
    and not the other way around- The arrogance of our political leaders,
    who are just foolish inexperienced media obsessed school children who think they know everything and yet know nothing is somewhat outstanding.
    I may not be a kipper, yet as a grass root Tory, in exile, we are swimming together in the same pond at present, yet this proves that UKIP also take Labour votes .
    Labour’s betrayal of its own core votes is quite outstanding and they
    assume the coalition is no better, there is in fact no party for the working class.
    So perhaps UKIP will fill a gap.
    Although the danger for them is being all things for all people, and making promises it will be difficult to keep, we will have to see how it all pans out.

  • arnoldo87

    Loved the Radio2 news summary at 7.00 this morning. Reporting on the UKIP’s spokesman Mujeeb Bhutto’s involvement in kidnapping, it reported that Bhutto had resigned from UKIP…………………………….and had joined the Conservative Party!

    • HookesLaw

      He may have said he joined, but his application was rejected. See the BBC.

      • Denis_Cooper

        http://order-order.com/2014/02/04/leaked-emails-reveal-ukip-kidnapper-is-tory-membernewnight-scoop-missed-pm-welcoming-bhutto-to-the-party/

        “UPDATE: Shapps was just confronted with these emails on the Daily Politics, it seems the Tories had spotted the issue here. Though it seems no one told Leeds…

        UPDATE II: Poor Bhutto has been booted out already. Tories say:

        “Bhutto is not a member. He applied, got the normal follow ups, and we reserve the right to refuse and have done that.”

        Normal follow ups including a personalised welcome thanking them for re-joining? Glad that’s all cleared up then… “

        • HookesLaw

          A real update – he is not a tory party member. He was a UKIP spokesman.

          Meantime you must feel a bit silly defending David Silvester – he has now been expelled from UKIP.

          • Valerie Arnold

            Yes Silvester was expelled immediately from UKIP, more than can be said for Cameron who did nothing when he first made this statement as a Tory member.

          • Wessex Man

            has he gone back to your lot then? after all he was a Tory when he talked the talk out a Tory halfwit!

          • Denis_Cooper

            And before he was in UKIP he was in the Tory party, which is why your chap in Leeds wrote to him as follows:

            “From: “Robert Winfield”
            Date: 30 January 2014 23:59:38 GMT
            To: Mujeeb.bhutto
            Subject: Leeds Central Conservatives

            Mujeeb
            I am just dropping you a brief e mail to say that I was delighted to learn that you have rejoined the Conservative Party. I hope to speak to you soon but unfortunately I am just getting over flu.

            I assume this means that you have severed your connections with UKIP.

            Best wishes

            Robert Winfield”

            I think both Robert Winfield and you should know what is meant by the word “rejoined”, as in “I was delighted to learn that you have rejoined the Conservative party”, but just in case you’re not entirely clear about that it means that he was a Tory, he left, and he came back.

          • Lady Magdalene

            He WAS a Conservative Party member for a year in 2008-2009. He defected to UKIP ….. we got rid of him ….. he rejoined the Conservative Party.
            Just like the “gay floods” man, he’s the Conservative Party’s man.

  • bencorde

    We beat the lot of them down here in Combe St Nicholas. UKIP councillor is just the start. The earthquake has already started and the rotten LIBLABCON carousel is going to fall into the crevasse. Time to stop the merry-go-round and jump off the EU bandwagon. Perhaps then we can sing Land of Hope Glory once more with some real conviction.

  • Brummie

    So what exactly is UKIP’s policy on universal benefits then? Is it in favor of paying millionaires Winter Fuel Allowance and subsidizing their free travel on public transport, paying universal benefits to those now living abroad? Even the Tories look set to dump this pledge.

    Come to think of it, what it UKIP’s policy on anything anymore. Since it ripped up the manifesto (aka “a load of drivel”) I don’t know what it stands for on anything other than the EU.

    • saffrin

      If our OAP’s have paid into the system they are entitled to receive their dues, regardless of where they live, or how much they have saved away.

      • Brummie

        I see your point but their dues and more have already been spent by governments several times over on the welfare state that has benefited them very well over the past 60 years, e.g. free uni, healthcare, etc etc.

        As we now addressthe need for the state to be cut down to size cuts and changes and tax rises are disproportionately falling on the younger (40 and below) whilst pensions and universal benefits make up the largest by far section of welfare spending.

        There is a complex question of generational fairness between
        the young and the baby boomers to be had but I accept this is not the topic underdiscussion here.

        • saffrin

          Government spending could/should/needs to start with the unemployment and associated benefits paid out to those that open door mass immigration has put/kept out of work.
          UKIP can achieve that very simple aim by kicking out Labour’s and the EU’s immigrants.

          • HookesLaw

            UKIP could no more kick them out than you can fly to the moon. the economy would grinf to a halt for one thing. basically all you continually come out with are racist rants.

            • saffrin

              Your hate post does you justice, you narrow minded bigoted bas*ard.

              • HookesLaw

                You are the nasty one with the narrow mind – sorry to force you to face up to it. Hate and intolerance is all that UKIP preach. It has got steadily nastier as it has found a dirty misogynistic xenophobic homophobic furrow to plough.

                • Colonel Mustard

                  Tripe. It’s really time that ‘de-toxifying’ Tories like you woke up to the reality of who your real enemies are, got off your fat complacent backsides and actually fought them.

                • HookesLaw

                  Hate and intolerance is what UKIP preach. Its been sad to see them descend to the gutter of the lowest common denominator. Its clear from the poster their campaign is founded on lies.

                • Colonel Mustard

                  Er, no. Hate and intolerance of UKIP is what you preach. In fact your comments here have done more to make me inclined to vote UKIP and less inclined to vote Conservative (which I have all my life). If you are representative of the de-toxified Conservative party I want none of it.

                • saffrin

                  Labour spent their entire 13 years in Government inspiring racial/religious hatred, division and habitual lies.

                  UKIP on the other hand bring common sense back to British politics and lives while you and your ilk just can’t help yourselfs but spread ever more hate, ever more lies.

                • Cyril Sneer

                  You forgot to call us swivel eyed loons.

                  There is nothing like alienating your electorate – you’re a Tory, you should know all about that.

                • Cyril Sneer

                  No of course, why would there be a rejection of the single biggest influx of foreign people to this island in just 13 years, changing the identity of this country, dwarfing the number that came here for the previous thousand years.

                  I do not recall voting for that.

                  And in the New World Order, to oppose mass immigration is apparently ‘xenophobic’ and ‘racist’.

        • Valerie Arnold

          Please stop saying FREE health care, it is not free, it has been paid in for since it was first introduced just after the war. A friend of mine was told by a German locum at his GPs surgery, “you are lucky to be treated for free “. he has worked and paid in all his life, it was and is not FREE.

          • Brummie

            Sorry that is not what I meant to infer. I
            was referring to the days before NHS charging – dental, prescription, optometry
            etc.

            Healthcare is of course not free in the UK, we pay very high tax rates for the privilege
            of a largely free at the point of use service.

    • Wessex Man

      Can you remember the Labour Party Manifesto from 2010, which was drawn up by Gordon Brown, the worst PM in the history of this Country, helped by the current Leader, Ed Miliband, who tried to sweep under the carpet the internal inquiry in Falkirk, now published bt the Guardian, or the Lib/Dum or Tory Mainfestos that were thrown away as soon as they scented power.

      Back to the Kindergarden for you!

      • HookesLaw

        He is asking what the policy is now. In reality any kipper policy is what comes into Farage’s head when he get up in the morning and his members have to jump to it to agree its wonderful.

        • Wessex Man

          you are so bitter Hooky, what’s your party manifesto for the 2015 General Election?

          • the viceroy’s gin

            “Being as much like our LibLabCon soulmates as an inebriated media class will let us get away with!”

            “Vote for us!”

        • the viceroy’s gin

          …so, just like your boy Call Me Dave, then?

      • Brummie

        That didn’t
        really answer my perfectly reasonable question (not that I expected one, it was rhetorical)

        All you did was get exited by what annoys you (and perfectly reasonably so) and then insult me.

        If that’s thebest you have to offer…..

        • Brummie

          Sorry that was supposed to be a reply to Wessex Man

          • Wessex Man

            oh really Brummie, you are turning into another sad Hooky, only with a bit of red. Can you tell me what labour’s plans were to keep the NHS afloat after saddling them with massive PFI repayments? keen to listen and learn.

            • Brummie

              A bit of red? I wont stand for that. I am no socialist.
              I have no idea what Labour’s PFI plans were other than to shift the debt of the balance sheet. I also dont see what this point has to do with the question at hand – universal benefits.
              If we are going to start throwing insults – and having read your comments on this page you seem to excel in this – I would say you are the one demonstrating “a bit of red” with your lefty love in with the welfare state.

  • Denis_Cooper

    There should be no surprise about this.

    Labour has betrayed its core supporters and as that sinks in they will be less and less inclined to continue their support, and that it is beginning to sink in and it is beginning to have that effect has been indicated for some time not only by results from by-elections but by the pattern of the opinion polls as shown here:

    http://www.electoralcalculus.co.uk/polls.html

    As I pointed yesterday the Labour lead over the Tories has been running at about 6% for about eighteen months now and has not been sensitive to changes in the level of support for UKIP – if the UKIP rating moves in one direction the ratings for both the Tories and Labour move in the opposite direction more or less in parallel, which is not consistent with the old idea that UKIP only takes support away from the Tories – and if one were to provisionally accept that the lead has recently narrowed to about 5% – which is of course still well within the normal range of fluctuation – then that change is actually accounted for by Labour losing 2%, the Tories losing 1% and UKIP gaining 3%.

    • Kitty MLB

      Well said Dennis.
      Labour have utterly betrayed its own voters,
      through excessive immigration, destroying our education system ( that Michael Gove is doing an excellent job correcting), our benefits system,
      wrecking industry in our northern cities- preferring cheap goods from China,
      encouraging people to spend money they could not afford to pay back
      and making London to important.
      Besmirching other parties and using hysteria will not help my party,
      only a new leader in the David Davies vein will do that- or even Douglas Carswell.
      If that happened and we returned to old fashioned Conservative values
      things would be very different, I am just saying do not become smug.

  • swatnan

    Disgraceful. Nige has disowned the campaigns clear xenophobic message.
    He must now de select that candidate.

    • saffrin

      There is nothing xenophobic in that poster campaign. Labour’s traditional voter’s are waking up to the fact Labour betrayed them well over a decade ago as their open door mass immigration program adds ever more to the unemployment and housing waiting lists, and seeing as Labour’s dreams rest on their traditional Northern support, Labour needs to understand that support is based on the fact Labour WERE the only alternative to a Tory Government.

    • Nicholas chuzzlewit

      Agreed. Labour has not betrayed Britain anything like “enough”. Only when ever last freedom has been eviscerated, freedom of speech a passing historical note and national prosperity completely and utterly destroyed will Labour believe that it has done “enough”. Indeed, I have written to UKIP and berated them in the bitterest terms in respect of their utter failure to recognise the true destructive, catastrophic and spiteful extent of Labour’s plan for Britain. Farage should resign immediately for this failure.

  • AnotherDave

    UKIP also produced a “Labour Millionaires” leaflet.

    https://twitter.com/neilweekes/status/429736297507201026

    And one declaring UKIP to be “the only party representing local working class people”

    https://twitter.com/DavidJo52951945/status/429994462333243395/photo/1

  • Nicholas chuzzlewit

    A poor slogan lacking in credibility. The suggestion that Labour has betrayed Britain “enough” is laughable. Labour will not be satisfied until they have completely and utterly destroyed British culture, prosperity and freedom. There can never be ‘enough’ betrayal to satisfy the Labour Party. Good luck to this Bickley chap though. Hope he gives Labour a proper stuffing.

    • BarkingAtTreehuggers

      Of course he won’t – what a childish suggestion even to suggest that he could. The slogan is indeed lacking. Even the slogan.
      Next.

      • Smithersjones2013

        What is lacking is people’s ability to read the poster properly.

        • BarkingAtTreehuggers

          People in Wythenshawe are not as gullible as the South East fruitcakes. Thatcher managed decline in the North West – then Siemens stepped up and invested on Parkway (technically Wythenshawe). Europe saved our bacon – why would the multi-cultural people of Wythenshawe vote to leave it?

      • Nicholas chuzzlewit

        No GCSE in irony for you then.

        • BarkingAtTreehuggers

          Ooops. No It appears I missed the joke(s) indeed.

          Enough’s enough for now.

    • Smithersjones2013

      Sadly it seems you are incapable of reading the poster properly:

      LABOUR HAVE BETRAYED YOU (STOP)

      ENOUGH’S ENOUGH (STOP)

      VOTE JOHN BICKLEY (STOP)………

      • Wessex Man

        and your point is what exactly?

      • Nicholas chuzzlewit

        My post was an attempt at irony which, looking at the up ticks, quite a few people seem to have gathered. You on the other hand………..

  • Hello

    “The party doesn’t really think it can beat Labour, but what it does want to do is to unsettle it in the same way as it did in Eastleigh with the Tories.”

    They also want to neutralise the “splitting the right” line, and the “let Labour in” argument. Of course it also helps them to dismiss arguments about Ukip being a protest party if they can takes votes from the opposition.

  • Doggie Roussel

    Labour complacency allows them to think that UKIP are only a threat to the arrogant Tories.

    They are in for a horrible shock. Labour have taken for granted the working class votes in the north, not realising that many of the working classes feel betrayed on immigration and the EU, not to mention all the effete Islingtonites who have ditched them in favour of minority causes: gay marriage, PC obsesssive regard for Islam, benefits scroungers, not to mention the arrant and smug condescension that Labour displays towards its core voters.

    The Tories will always hold on to the votes of the Sir Tufton Buftons and Sir Herbert Gussets but many other traditional Tories from the middle and lower classes have had enough of the betrayal and complacency of the arrogant Tories.

    And one should also remember that UKIP are as yet unsullied by all the corruption and greed which was exposed in that cesspit in Westminster, with all the main parties equally tainted.

    • Makroon

      “Unsullied” eh !? Ha-ha-ha-ha …

      • realfish

        Don’t be nasty Makroon, doggie is technically quite right, they aren’t sullied by Westminster greed – they don’t have any MPs.

        Then again when it comes to the Brussels cesspit, how many KIPper / ex KIPper MEPs are in the nick for expenses fraud? …or attend the Euro Parliament just to claim their expenses…or just go along for the ride?

        • MirthaTidville

          They are unsullied by the LiLabCon arrogance that has tainted this country for so long.Same policies but different colours. Major changes without honesty. UKIP has forced debate up the political agenda. Your average Joe Bloggs is looking for a change and at the moment the momentum for that change is with UKIP…you may sneer but you cant ignore them……..I`m happy to say

          • HookesLaw

            Just invention on your part. Invention because you have no way to justify activities which will bring Labour back to power.

            • an ex-tory voter

              The only person bringing Labour back is David Cameron and he is doing so by the simple expedient of disenfranchising his core vote!

              • Conway

                I agree. It’s getting so that a vote for the Cameron (un)Conservatives is a vote for Labour. Cameron couldn’t win a majority even against Brown; since then he has insulted his core voters, halved the Party membership and alienated small C conservatives with his metrosexual redefinition of marriage. A vote for the Conservatives under Dave is a wasted vote.

      • Wessex Man

        Yes as in sullied cronies appointed by the Labour and Lib/Dums to the Lords to talk out anything these slimeballs don’t like as in the Referendum on EU Membership, or dear old Lord Smith, trying to bluster away any mention that the Environmental Agency spent £395.3 0n staff but only £20.3 of it’s Government Grant on Flood Prevention, 1.7% of it’s total budget.

        Reserve your scorn for the people who deserve it!

        • HookesLaw

          Its staff are the ones who do the work, swanning up and down the river. It has about 12,000 staff but if that number upsets you its beiong cut to under 10,000. (this should please all the numpties who say the govt is not making cuts).
          Of course these cuts are annoying the left, so if you think they are a good thing and should go further I suggest you start supporting the govt. instead of sniping at it.

          In terms of money spent on flood prevention – the BBC reported in Nov 2012…
          ‘The government has announced £120m of funding for flood defences, as households across Britain contend with the aftermath of heavy storms. Ministers estimate that the money, which will be delivered between next year and 2015, will improve flood protection for up to 60,000 homes.’
          ‘The government said the money was in addition to the £2bn being spent on flooding and coastal erosion in the spending period up to 2015.’

          Also (from The Guardian back in June (ie before these floods)…
          ‘The government will boost spending on new defences to £370m in 2015-16, an almost 50% increase compared with this year. It also pledged to increase the sum in line with inflation each year until 2021.’

          • an ex-tory voter

            All this good news about increased government spending on flood defences does not alter the fact that “their agency” has failed to prevent thousands of acres and hundreds of homes from being inundated, or cut off. Something that has not happened since the levels were drained centuries ago.

            Maybe you and your good friend Dave should take a trip down there and see how you are greeted by the lucky recipients of all this largesse.

            • MirthaTidville

              and with a bit of luck we might not hear from either of them again.

          • Wessex Man

            Absolute rubbish as usual Hooky, the EA have sold over 40 of their biggest dredgers to Eastern Europe and according to the F of I Request that made them reveal their spending requirements a grand total of 1.7% of their grant was spent on maintaining culverts and channels to ensure the free flow of water.

        • Conway

          While we are on the subject of Lord Smith, the EA and floods, it might be worthwhile mentioning the EU’s Water Directive. No wonder the EA didn’t dredge rivers but wanted to flood the wetlands and establish bird sanctuaries.

    • Denis_Cooper

      Conversely the arrogant Tories persist in assuming that all those supporting UKIP are really their own supporters gone astray, a “lost tribe” of Tories who can be “brought back into the fold”, despite the mounting evidence to the contrary.

      Or do they? Over the past year or so I have found it increasingly difficult to believe that the Tory leaders really do still think that, and that they want to bash UKIP because they think bashing UKIP will significantly help them to win the next election; and so my conclusion is that the real reason they want to bash UKIP is because they fear that otherwise it will end up with us leaving the EU, and the restoration of national self-government outside the EU is a horrific prospect as far as they are concerned.

    • ButcombeMan

      I am assured by Sir Tufton and many of his friends, that Cameron’s support for redefining the meaning of marriage, has ended his relationship with the Tories.

      Sir Tufton now likes the cut of that Farage chappie.

      “Sort of cove one could enjoy a glass or two with” (unlike Cameron).

  • Colonel Mustard

    Now the anti-Labour message that I can relate to. I have no doubt that the Tories and Lib-Dems would not be so keen to embrace fallacious socialist policies or dance to the socialist tune if the Labour collective in Britain had its wings severely trimmed back.

    • Nicholas chuzzlewit

      Agreed Colonel, although I find the thought that Labour has betrayed Britain “enough” to be hardly credible. The socialist collective will not believe they have done enough until British culture, freedom and prosperity have been utterly destroyed.

      • HookesLaw

        The labour party have been a regular disaster – a recurring plague – for Britain. I despise those who want to split the right wing vote and let labour in again.

      • Conway

        But surely it’s “enough” in the sense that it’s time to call a halt before they manage to completely destroy us?

        • Nicholas chuzzlewit

          So no GCSE In ‘irony’ for you then.

    • Kitty MLB

      Colonel, old stick! You are a gentleman , would you mind very much not calling them
      Tories, I am sure you would not intentionally insult the party of Thatcher by doing that, but unfortunately you do.
      Also frankly if they were Tories, UKIP would not stand a change.
      Its also not just the embrace of fallacious policies that has proved their undoing, its also the embrace, that Blair started ( and Continues with his
      acolyte Cameron) Politicians now have to be a ‘ friend’ of the electorate’
      understand them and know the price of bread, this overfamiliarity
      is bonkers, they are not our chums- they just need to put things right.

      • Colonel Mustard

        I duly stand corrected for the shorthand but ‘Tories’ to me has always represented the patrician grandee wets, the arrogant county set and the ruperts of the party rather than real Conservative gentlemen who are pretty much invisible these days. And it is unfortunately that it is that cartoon segment of the party that seems to headline it in the eyes of many (most?) people. The irony is that it also seems to be those types who have been so eager to embrace ‘social democracy’ and dance to Labour’s ‘centre ground’ tune.

        Mr Cameron now acknowledges that it was a mistake to push the gay marriage policy. Many in the party could have told him that and did. The strategic failure is breathtaking.

        http://www.dailymail.co.uk/debate/article-2551333/Nurture-grassroots-pay-heavy-price-polls-Tory-party-barely-presence-seats-hopes-win-says-SIMON-HEFFER.html

        • Kitty MLB

          I see you point about the word ‘ Tory’ and how much
          the people who sail or pretend to sail under its flag have changed during the decades.
          Yes indeed the Conservative gentleman is unfortunately
          is not part of Cameron’s new fake image.
          Perhaps they are seen as too posh! and yet such people
          as Jacob Rees- Mogg happen to be very popular now
          appearing on TV, and the working classes actually
          respect and like him- he is genuine!
          I cannot think for the life of me why Grant Shapps
          is chairman instead of someone like Douglas Carswell
          or Graham Brady- I was going to say David Davies actually !
          I can understand why the grassroots do not recognise
          their party.
          Do you suppose Gay Marriage will be Cameron’s
          Achilles Heel?
          It might also be many other of the Lib Dem policies.

          • Wessex Man

            You are joking he’s just pure comedy, the last thing that any serious party wants, why he even took his nanny out cancassing with him!

            • Kitty MLB

              Yes, he fully admits about the nanny, and he even admits
              that he has caviar on a regular basis- its not a treat!
              He is hilarious, reminds me of a certain 1920’s
              character I read about.
              The point is he is genuine, and not ashamed of his upbringing. They started putting him on Have I Got News For You, because they thought people might laugh at him,
              but they were laughing with him, he is very funny but does not realise it.
              Also they started putting him on more news programmes,
              with opinionated woman presenters- he knew how to deal with them also.
              I don’t think he should be a party chairman or leader though.

              • Wessex Man

                still don’t want him, Hooky can keep him!

                • Kitty MLB

                  He reminds me of the son of Evelyn Waugh-
                  not in looks but in character.
                  Hooky does not mind sharing.

              • Doggie Roussel

                Bertie Wooster springs to mind !

          • Doggie Roussel

            Rees-Mogg is an absolute superstar… he was even taken in by Ali G, who wondered whether Jacob R-M might find it possible to endorse a marriage twixt Ali G and Jacob’s fragrant sister, Annunziata.

            Miss R-M was, I believe, rejected by the voters, but her brother remains one of the more colourful and attractive figures in Parliament; always immensely and impressively posh, straightforward and completely fogeyish, while unpolluted with the narcissistic and attention-seeking antics of the likes of the unfrocked chief whip, that Mitchell geezer…

            He also resisted any pressure to join the Bullingdon Club, while at Oxford… unlike many of his contemporaries at Eton…

            • Ricky Strong

              Absolutely; I do thoroughly enjoy listening to him speak in the commons on the rare occasions that he does. If you have not yet seen it, his debate at the Oxford Union on Youtube re: the EU is superb.

      • HookesLaw

        Thatcher – the one who took us into the single market. And the ERM. You are as bad as the socialists in harking back to Thatcher.

    • HookesLaw

      Just what socialist policies are the Tories embracing – give me a hint about their socialist education policies for instance.

      • Colonel Mustard

        Big government, big state, high taxation, bogus equalities legislation (pioneered by Harriet Harmthenation no less), nannyism, quangoism, fake charityism, censorship, legislative promiscuity, etc.

        Education is about the one area that a measure of real conservatism can be seen.

        • HookesLaw

          Believe it or not I am quite perceptive and I deduce that your reply is code for ‘the Tories are not following any socialist policies – and certainly none in education’.

          On taxation for instance it has risked the wrath of real socialists by cutting the 50p rate. It has also raised the basic tax allowance considerably. It has put a cap on council tax rather than limit it to inflation. It has abolished Labour’s planned rise in NI and recently announced that employers NI for under 21’s would be scrapped. It has cut corporation tax. It has stopped planned rises in fuel duty.

          • Colonel Mustard

            I don’t deal in code. Governments are about direction and perception rather than nitty gritty. Firstly the increased tax allowance was a Lib Dem policy. Secondly the 50p to 45p rate change was risible – a sort of what can we get away with to pander to the Laffer curve and at the same time pander to the politics of envy brigade. It achieved neither. They still got their backsides kicked over it by all the usual suspects whilst missing out on the true potential of a low tax economy.

            All the other things are tweaks that have little or no bearing on ordinary people. If this government was courageous and believed in conservative values we would have seen it keep its Coalition Agreement policies on civil liberties and strike out for radical fiscal reform to break away from socialist impediments. They would have cut fuel duty altogether and cut the quangocracy and foreign aid to the bone to pay for it.

            • HookesLaw

              You are just dissembling again. There is the small matter of labours 160 billion deficit. This is not a ‘socialist govt’ and you cannot produce any evidence that it is.
              It has privatised the Royal Mail.
              Its already spending money to keep replacing Trident on programme.
              Its education policy is plainly not socialist.
              Hundreds of thousands of public sector jobs are being lost.
              You live in a warped fantasy world – its the only way you can justify your opinions. But this is what happens when all; you hysterics get together and start whipping yourselves into a frenzy.

              • Colonel Mustard

                I wondered how long you would take to descend to abuse.

                Privatising the Royal Mail was a mistake. The clue is in the name.

                Trident? I’d rather have the ships.

                Public sector jobs? Yes, they were cut but the pay bill managed to go up:-

                http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-20561444

          • MirthaTidville

            No we dont believe you are perceptive

            • Wessex Man

              He’s just a relative of Call me Dave, what happened to the Referendum Hooky?

  • callingallcomets

    “Behind the scenes senior figures”…..ah…the cosy world of Speccie “journalism”…

  • Major_Eyeswater

    UKIP don’t “steal” votes. The other parties never owned them in the first place. Perhaps that is UKIP’s singular contribution to our democracy: reminding TPTB that we the people are sovereign in our right. Perhaps they might condescend to remember that? I shan’t hold my breath.

    • Pootles

      Dam’ right, Major! UKIP is the best thing that has happened to democracy here in my lifetime. The whole Westminster system needs a good shakeup. It might get a bit of a shake if the Jocks vote ‘Yes’ this year, but for a real, make their teeth rattle, shake, we’ll have to look to UKIP. It’s a shame that although the establishment parties think that we have to have varieties of PR voting for the EU ‘Parliament’, the devolved assemblies and Scots Parliament, we don’t need it for Westminster. The anti-democratic b*****s.

      • Makroon

        Ha-ha, you may be on to something. Vote UKIP, get PR (and endless LibLab coalitions).

      • realfish

        I thought that the people rejected PR…or did I imagine that?

        • Pootles

          What was rejected was AV, which is not a PR system, so, yes, you did imagine it. In fact, AV has the capacity to deliver even more distorted results than FPTP. The PR element for the Scottish Parliament, for instance, is contained in the list system which is used alongside FPTP. It is the list system in Scotland that ensures that, for example, Scots of a Conservative disposition are represented at Holyrood; without that PR element, Conservatives in Scotland would be totally unrepresented at Edinburgh, which woul hardly be democratic.

          • allymax bruce

            “It is the list system in Scotland that ensures that, … Scots
            of a Conservative disposition are represented at Holyrood; without that
            PR element, Conservatives in Scotland would be totally unrepresented”
            Yes, absolutely correct. But it’s worse still; the ‘List system’
            unfairly & undemocratically allows Labour, Lib-Dem, & Tory Party’s get
            their ‘parachuted-in’ ‘barrack’ room ‘lawyers’, (Cochrane; Telegragh)
            into powerful political positions in the Scottish Parliament, without
            even presenting themselves as candidates to the Scottish Public for
            voting! They are ‘hand-picked’ Party trolls, that are ‘rewarded’ for all
            their ‘particular’ Party favours! The Conservatives Leader in
            Scotland,Ruth Davidson, nobody voted for her! The Lib-Dem Leader in
            Scotland, Willie Rennie, nobody voted for him! Labour have more than
            23rds of their whole MSP representation at Holyrood that nobody voted
            for! It’s a complete and utter Tri-Party mafia fix!

            • Pootles

              Yes, there’s a lot in what you say Allymax. The nature of the list is, of course, important – having a list that allows the voter to choose between party candidates is the key, as opposed to the undemocratic ‘closed list’. Funny how the bu****s are so keen on all the methods of avoiding us, the voter. The best examples of recent years are, of course, Baroness Ashton (totally unelected in her lifetime, and strangely forgetful about Moscow funding for CND when she was on watch), and Gordon Brown – anointed by the ever-credulous Labourites.

          • realfish

            It is proportional, but not probably proportional enough for some.
            What is anti democratic is the prospect of the Lib Dems – with a tiny, tiny proportion of the vote, finding themselves in perpetual power, able to disfigure and impede Government, in a way that is completely disproportionate to their popular support

            • Pootles

              I would agree with you there, but FPTP hasn’t delivered a majority vote since 1935 – you’d have to be 100 to have voted in that electon.

            • Andy

              Indeed so, which is why they are so keen on PR and also why they were so keen on House of Lords reform. Unfortunately because the Fascist Labour Party have so gerrymandered the boundaries we see that they can get a huge majority on a small share of the vote while that same share of the vote would not give the Tories a majority, huge or otherwise.

              • John Peers

                They are not keen on PR. Under the AV system the MP elected would not necessarily be the most popular person with the voters, but more likely the least unpopular person with the voters. That is, if I was a Labour supporter I would vote Labour as my number 1 vote and LibDem as my number 2 vote in order to prevent a Tory becoming an MP, and vice versa if you are a Tory supporter. Therefore there is a good chance that there would be more LibDem MPs elected under that system than under PR.

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