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The media are laughing at UKIP yet again, but this is getting serious

Yesterday, newspapers reported Arron Banks’s latest contretemps with UKIP and the party was a joke once again. For once, this was unfair.

Banks’ latest attention seeking contribution had been to claim that he has been `kicked out of UKIP’ for saying that Paul Nuttall “couldn’t knock the skin off a rice pudding”, that his membership had been suspended, or, as Andy Wigmore (Banks’ spokesman) is quoted as saying “they chucked him out for bringing the party into disrepute”. A UKIP spokesperson was quoted as saying that Banks’ membership had simply lapsed.

 

So much, so farcical. And so much fake news because Paul Nuttall released his reply to Banks’ letter of 26th February (previously on the website Westmonster but now withdrawn) , the one in which he had demanded to be Chairman of the party. You’ve probably seen Nuttall’s email by now but for those of you who have not, it agrees to work with Banks to improve the party, except for Paul Oakden having to give up his post in favour of Banks. We also learn that there is an invitation for Banks to address an NEC meeting later this month on 27th March (he’s not going) and that Banks recently applied to renew his lapsed membership. Nuttall tells him that this will not be processed until he has met with the NEC.

 

Banks may have reservations about Nuttall and Oakden – who doesn’t? – but if the party agreed to his reforms then surely those reservations would be dealt with. Nuttall’s letter indicated that the party was open to discussing Banks’ reforms. The reforms were potentially achievable, and so worth fighting for. There was just one `reform’ out of reach, Banks as Chairman, and it seems the only reform that really interested Banks. One can see why. In America, he can only hang onto Nigel’s coat tails for so long at the Trump party.  He wanted a high-profile position in the Brexit party, a vantage point to go after Carswell.  Serving ordinary kippers, serving the party, doesn’t come into it.

 

The truth, I submit, is that Banks wanted to take over UKIP, rather than start the long threatened alternative `UKIP 2.0’, because he discovered that no matter how many people signed up to receive Leave.eu emails the reality on the ground was predominantly UKIP activists from branches. He knows that without branches and ground troops his alternative risks falling flat.

 

He also needs Nigel and did not start the alternative party before because Nigel had always said no. But the recent spat between Carswell and Nigel, Nigel’s evident disappointment at Nuttall’s misguided campaign in Stoke, may mean Banks believes, even knows perhaps, that Nigel’s attachment is not without its limits. Like Sturgeon and the SNP, he also knows that his window to do something is diminishing. The Stoke debacle, the spat between Nigel and Carswell, is as much confusion and discontent as he is likely to find on which to make his bid for a new party. In a year’s time no-one will care (especially about him). He has to move soon and to that end he put out fake news, lapped up by the media, and engineered a grievance on which to announce his new party.

 

All those who use the media to pursue private agendas and indulge personal antipathies commit a contempt of the membership when they actively damage the party’s reputation. Banks is not concerned about ordinary members. He has in various ways sneered at the party, adding to the party’s poor reputation he allegedly laments. I believe even Nigel, who was guilty himself of damaging the party by publicly denouncing the NEC, regrets that now (and not least for creating conditions that ultimately led to Suzanne Evans being head of policy). But Banks has no such feeling for decency, no residual respect for ordinary members.

 

There is a potential threat from any new party, a threat that at root is from UKIP’s current policy vacuum. If the party had a truly radical manifesto that spoke directly to people and their concerns, then there would be no room for Banks and another party. UKIP would have it sewn up. Nigel would then be talking up the party not merely commenting on it from time to time.

 

Our constitution says the party promotes and encourages the self-reliant and those who wish to improve their situation, that it wants lower taxes and a smaller state. In short, to get the state off people’s backs. People want to be in a position where they can look after themselves and their families not endure the humiliation of sucking on a teat funded by the hard work of others. People want self-respect. After stating the party’s aims the constitution says the party may formulate policies “in furtherance of these objectives” (my emphasis). High time it did.

 

Putting comprehensive and radical policies on a website for all to see is the only way for UKIP to secure its position in politics, to close out any opportunity for Banks, and to claim the crown that has always been there for UKIP if the leadership could but see it. My message about all this is that Banks is irrelevant. Policies are what matter. Labour voters did not like Margaret Thatcher but they voted for her when it became clear that she understood they wanted the self-respect of looking after themselves, of bettering life for their families, that dependency on the state was a humiliation. And it was policies that got Trump elected. It wasn’t just Hilary and establishment bashing that did it but following up with policies. He even survived `grabbing them by the pussy’ because he announced policies that spoke to millions of Americans.

 

It won’t be Banks or Carswell that destroys the party. It will be the policy vacuum, created by the weak and the vacillating in the party, that does it.  The leadership and its team of spokespeople and advisors have not got long. Forget about elections for now – we are going to be creamed in May – and concentrate on a radical, transformative manifesto for the country. And put it on a website for all to see.

 

The most telling omission in all of Banks’ attacks on UKIP – not a single mention of policy. Don’t be fooled by Banks, therefore, his party is nothing to do with policies and everything to do with his ego. But the future of UKIP depends utterly on policies.  I fear for what Evans, O’Flynn and Nuttall will come up with for it will decide whether we thrive or whither

 

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66 Comments on The media are laughing at UKIP yet again, but this is getting serious

  1. Dear Gary,

    Agree with you also on the ‘white van man’ – what makes him tick. But disagree that he’d switch to UKIP as Thatcherism (on steroids) or at least Thatcherite-lite. The self-employed and small business owners are pragmatic folks. After all, they are businessmen in their own right.

    Yes, they’re concerned with tax issues (income and NI). But the white van man has the Federation of Small Businesses and Self-Employed to represent them. They can mount group challenge under judicial review. As such, it goes without saying that they have national representation and voice which translates into political pressure.

    Our Old Labour working class communities, however, are (politically although not electorally) disenfranchised and marginalised. The ones who vote ‘Leave’ and would never ever vote Tory but might consider UKIP do not belong to the unions, including the militant ones. The working men’s clubs are from the by-gone eras that pre-date many of the unions we see today. In short, the Old Labour voters who are disillusioned with Labour but would never ever vote Tory have ‘no where to go to’ for representation.

    At the end of the day, the white man van (except in certain parts of Essex and even that is debatable post-Brexit) will go for blue rather than purple – the government rather than a protest movement.

    On the other hand, the Old Labour voter in the North and Midlands are UKIP’s natural constituencies – the ‘left behind’ and the ‘forgotten’ that chimes with that of the Brexit narrative of the effects of globalisation (including the EU) and neo-liberalism — the twin ideological pillars of the establishment resulting in the backlash of populist sentiments.

  2. Dear Gary,

    Agree with you that “Help to Buy” has not been helpful for first time buyers. Osbornomics has generally been unhelpful in promoting the “we’re in it together” mantra mouthed by the eponymous Chancellor. Personally, I see shared equity as a good idea. But as we know, the scheme wasn’t matched by changes in the housing stock. What the govt should have done was to sort out the supply first – central, local and private sector working together. Without govt intervention, the natural proclivity of big developers (i.e. those with big capital and capacity to increase supply to meet demand) is to focus towards the high-end property market. All the while as the govt dithers and delays, the ratio between income and price grows wider. This is exactly what’s happening presently.

  3. I think your criticisms of Arron Banks are completely wrong, Stout.
    Arron Banks is not and never has been a problem for UKIP. He has been a great benefactor.
    The real problem is summarised below in an extract from the resignation letter of three NEC members from about six months ago:

    Extract from the resignation letter from Victoria Ayling, Raymond Finch MEP and Michael McGough to the National Executive Committee of UKIP:

    “As members of UKIP’s NEC we have been privy to the increasingly alarming behaviour of many on that board, leading us to conclude that the party’s executive committee is no longer fit for purpose. Rather than aim to represent the membership who appointed them, a growing number of members of the NEC are placing personal ambitions, loyalties and jealousies at the heart of their decision making. We have witnessed an escalating megalomania that is detrimental to the functioning of the party.
    Rather than acting as servants of the party, many on the NEC are acting as the owners.”

    I feel that their remarks can be extended to many of the appointed officers and other officials of UKIP as well.

    That’s UKIP’s real problem; not Arron Banks.

    That’s the problem that plagued Nigel Farage in the last 18 months of his leadership.
    That’s the problem that Douglas Carswell exploited.
    That’s the problem that forced Diane James to resign the UKIP leadership.

    https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2016/dec/21/diane-james-leading-ukip-like-banging-head-against-brick-wall

    That’s the problem that led to Paul Oakden and Piers Wauchope having the arrogance to tell the candidates what they could and couldn’t say at the very poorly organised leadership hustings. Only John Rees-Evans had the character to refuse to comply and walk away.
    His, and consequently the party members, punishment for daring not to take orders was that Paul Nuttall and Suzanne Evans refused to appear with him, let alone debate with him, for the benfit of the membership, on television or elsewhere;
    absolutely appalling behaviour fully condoned by the leadership.
    That’s the problem, not Arron Banks. He is simply a voice speaking for so many frustrated UKIP members and ex-members.

    Despite subsequent elections to the NEC, 14 of the 18 members are still ‘old faces’; just the 4 new ones.
    That’s where deep problems lie, even before we get to Tomas Slivnik’s lengthy resignation letter, Paul Nuttall, his team and their many failings and mistakes.
    Don’t blame Arron for pointing out simple truths.

    • Your comment highlights the problem alright: the elevation of feeling over reason. Ayling & co’s resignation letter did not include anything factual. It is evidence only of Ayling & co’s state of mind and the attempt at character assassination in a kangaroo court. I was shocked at how bad it was. Adolescents throwing ta strop when they did not get their way in a vote.

      Nuttall and his team have many failings indeed – I have called them a clueless coterie – but that does not elevate Banks into some selfless saint. He is not “simply” a voice and it could just as well be that he exploits the frustrated rather speaks for them. Banks is no man of the people.

      Banks did not point out any simple truths. He lied by omission.

  4. Did Banks move quickly – lightening quickly – or was the whole charade a publicity stunt? You decide

    https://order-order.com/2017/03/15/introducing-the-patriotic-alliance/

  5. I agree with your comments about Banks and regrettably also suspect that given the recent chaos, we will not do well in May, that was a very unhelpful thing to say however.

    Those of us who have to fight these elections, are standing in them or are sitting councillors, even if we are safe for the next couple of years, will not thank you. We give up more of our time than most to pull the party forward and to try and make a positive difference to our electors’s lives. To many of the public WE are the party’s public face, far more so than MEPs or national figures and we are in the front line for the smears insults and jokes.
    This party is it’s branches, members and elected representatives, not commenters on UKIP daily or HQ big wigs. Most of us have no ambitions beyond our local council and service to our communities. We don’t want party paid jobs, to stand for Parliament or even join the NEC. Yes, we do get paid small allowances, but often find the cost of lost wages and expense of doing our casework well exceeds the allowance. Some of us even pay part of it to our branches. We remain loyal to the party, even those of us who have personal followings and know, thanks to some of the idiots who post rubbish here and elsewhere, we’d a stand a better chance of election as independents. That’s hard to do, once elected we have as much responsibility to those who elected us and our wards and Districts as to our party.
    So quit with the sour grapes, doom mongering and other stuff and get behind the leadership, it may not be perfect but it’s likely to be the best we can find in the foreseeable future.

    I’m deeply saddened by the bitter infighting we’ve had in the past, it has to stop, even at the cost of losing some members and I think the new management understands that. Let’s hope the rest of us start to do the same. .

    • Good post,straight to the point.

    • I doubt it is us idiots posting here that will be your problem in May.

      I do in fact wish you well in forthcoming local elections. My remarks are meant to focus on our policy vacuum, a problem way more serious than a few comments and articles on UD.

    • I totally appreciate how difficult it is for UKIP councillors and candidates in the current circumstances, but you can’t really blame people for losing faith.

      The “new” UKIP seems to be leaving its supporters, not the other way around. This discontent hasn’t come from nowhere. It’s been brewing for months and hasn’t been addressed at all by the leadership.

      If there’d been any kind of meaningful reassurance since Stoke the party support wouldn’t be wobbling like this. We’re down to 4th place at 9% in a YouGov poll today!

    • I made comments on UKIP Daily because I fear for what this country will become for my children, my grandchildren and their children. At one time I saw UKIP as the only political party that would possibly change what I saw as the catastrophic direction the existing parties were taking. The direction of UKIP changed when to me, it was infiltrated by people who were previously members of these other parties, who then sought to change UKIP to a similar appeasing policies to LibLabCon and a nice little earner. UKIP daily is the only outlet that I could find to voice my frustrations since the members forum disappeared. If the Elite didn’t want comments and criticism out in the open the forum was for members only.

      If that makes me an idiot, I’m happier being an idiot than to get behind people I believe have destroyed what so many citizens thought would possibly be the saviour of our society.

      • John, this fellow idiot thanks you for your heartfelt comment, which perfectly summed up how I felt. My comments too have been borne out of the frustration, sorrow and anger at the direction, which has really become clear since UKIP had to decide what sort of party it wanted to be under the new leader after Brexit. I have to say I never foresaw that it would become the shambolic appeasing dictatorship it currently is, perhaps it will eventually improve and decide on policies that appeal to the British public.
        I too wish those that wish to carry the standard of the current UKIP forward the very best of luck, I have little hope that anything will change, so I will not be campaigning for the current leadership, and in all likelihood will resign my membership.

        • Hi Dee. Looking at the comment above from Howard Keating regarding the reasons given for the resignations from the NEC, I don’t think changes are near for UKIP, so I’m hoping that Mr. Banks will come up with something that I will feel I can support. Perhaps most of the members do not feel the same way as the majority on UKP Daily and are happy with things as icini appears to be, no hard feelings from me, but it would have been nice if the Elite could have taken the time to respond to the many concerns voiced on this site.

          Kind regards

          John

  6. Banks was right to say that at the current Ukip leadership couldn’t knock the skin off a rice pudding. We need his money and organisational skills: whether he is making efforts to save the Party because he loves the members or because he has a huge ego really doesn’t matter.

    Nigel has a huge ego: that’s no criticism, it’s what endows him with his unwavering self-belief; his determination to achieve what he thinks is right; and the charisma that enables him to persuade people to his point of view.

    Anne Marie Waters is courageous and committed to challenging sharia and islam in this country. She sacrificed her electoral ambitions and her chance of attaining a position of influence in the Party by sticking with Pegida UK when it came to the crunch. She posted an inspiring ‘battlecry’ against sharia on ukipdaily that attracted about 7000 hits and many pledges of support.

    We need those three people leading the Party, whether it is the original Ukip or Ukip Mark 2. I think Mike Newland is right when he says that parties are ‘vehicles to carry forward a cause until their limitations halt them’. He also points out that Ukip has gone through various upheavals, with Nigel emerging as the leader who achieved the most in the fight for Brexit. Now that Brexit is making some progress (albeit slowly, and there is no doubt that vigilance is needed), the Party needs a new radical direction and to continue saying the unsayable, as it did on the topic of immigration.

    Who else will speak for the majority in this country who are accused of ‘islamophobia’ should they squeak the slightest protest at the disturbing islamification that proceeds apace? The police stifle protest by ‘kettling’ demonstrators and invoking ‘hate speech laws’. The Leftards use abuse and intimidation to promote the ‘victimhood’ of muslims and the ‘nastiness’ of those who oppose islam.

    Aaron Banks for the money and what it can provide; Nigel for the political knowhow and charisma; Anne Marie for the sheer courage it takes to tackle the most pressing issue in our society now that we’re leaving the EU.

    What is the use of fighting to get out of a 20th century political dictatorship if we do nothing to save ourselves from a 1,400-year-old fascist ideology disguised as ‘religion’?

    • No-one hear disagrees except over Banks.

      The plain fact is he publicly issued an ultimatum, the least effective tactic that exists in politics.

      Banks has now said he is not pursuing renewal. UKIP is over for him, a result he must have wanted given how he played his hand. I have NO respect at all for anyone who childishly tries to damage the party on the way out.

      While I share the aims of the Banks apologists on this site – a radical shake up of the party – I do not share the uncritical adulation of Banks. That he was a donor some time ago – and it was some time ago – does not buy him the right to play games or put out fake news to the media by omitting crucial facts.

      • Sorry, SY, I did not perceive any ‘uncritical adulation of Banks’ from anyone. Comments demonstrated more of a pragmatic admission that we need money from him to revitalise the Party. And as someone pointed out earlier, other donors were given positions in the Party or publicly lauded at Conferences as benefactors.
        Paul’s letter to Banks was pretty hypocritical: it says the NEC has ‘to safeguard the reputation of Ukip’. Ha! Who has done more than Paul to undermine that reputation in the last six disappointing weeks?

        • The donors given positions, did they issue humiliating, public ultimatums first to obtain those positions? You are not comparing like with like.

          Incompetence (Nuttall) is not the same as deliberately leaking to the press what should have been a private letter.

          I meant uncritical in the sense of lacking the capacity for critical thought. So much of that going on over Banks it must be some sort of idealisation if not adulation.

  7. Within a fiat currency environment – where the currency is not legally convertible on demand (in contradistinction to a purely commercial exchange) to either the USD or gold, the nature and role of money as pure legal tender which derives its ‘value’ or ‘authority’ purely and solely from government fiat or decree, budget deficits take on a different perspective, self-imposed constraints driven by ideological and political considerations notwithstanding.

    And the truth is budget deficits (including in the form of full employment) drive private profits.

  8. Very good debate here today. What makes a site like this so valuable. Anyone interested in our cause has somewhere to go where they may survey a range of opinions.

  9. One of the fundamental fallacies of classical economics or free market fundamentalism is as follows ….. the market of supply and demand always self-adjusts and therefore self-corrects — so long the State doesn’t interfere which can only prolong the ‘trough’ or downturn.

    Such a ‘postulation’ presupposes and implies that supply creates its own demand – which translates into stock of savings drives flow of income. But this doesn’t reflect the MACRO-economic reality.

    Market failure without the corresponding self-adjustment occurs because …..

    – Private sector are pessimistic of current and future sales performance/ expectations and by extension of the FLOW of revenue receipts
    – Households are pessimistic about employment prospects and by extension of the FLOW of their income — so that there is also de-leveraging or paying down of the debt going on …..

    So, it is the reduction in the FLOW of spending in the economy that affects the STOCK of wealth, assets, income and therefore of money in the economy …..

    Which simply means that the flow of spending or investment drives the stock of wealth or income.

    But if the private sector and households desire to SAVE ….. then by default the one and only ‘institution’ that is capable of spending the economy out of downturn is none other than the State.

  10. Promotion of self-reliance, YES …..

    Promotion of a small state, NO …..

    Self-reliance and a pro-active State are not mutually exclusive ….. it is not a binary choice: either/ or

    But in the real world ….. which is complex, it can only be both/ and …..

    There are many people who need help in the beginning (of the ‘journey’) ….. a level-playing field or a head-start or equal opportunity or just an opportunity ….. this is where the State comes in ……

    For example, rntrepreneurship and the SMEs are the life-blood of the economy.

    And entrepreneurship and SMEs thrive best under conditions of de-regulation and less red tape.

    But it is a logical fallacy to infer therefore that accordingly the State should play less active role, shrink and “just get out of the way of business.”

    The role that UK Trade & Investment (UKTI) is a case in point – by providing either initial credit, bridging loan, support for loan applications from banks, insurance coverage, etc. to boost British exports to the emerging markets.

    Much more could be done, though …..

    • Nobody arguing for a smaller state is arguing for no state. Those are anarchists. Libertarians, for want of a better label, want the smallest possible state consistent with providing the essential functions that a state should provide (defence, borders, police force, welfare etc). Wherever you choose to draw that line, it is undeniable that the state is currently massively overreaching, interfering, inefficient and costly. The reach, remit and expense of government can be cut quite drastically before we get anywhere near to the point where difficult questions, such as reforming the NHS, need to be answered.

      The government and the taxpayer should have no role whatsoever in lending to SMEs. Much of this government interference is a sticking plaster to attempt to alleviate the damaging effects of government action elsewhere. Look at the various incentives being offered to first time buyers – government creates a bubble in the housing market through its failed immigration and housing policies, and rather than perform its basic duty as a government (control the borders) and then get out of the way and allow the market to make the inevitable, necessary correction it continues to inflate the housing bubble with taxpayer funded gimmicks and back of a fag packet schemes.

      If government wants to boost SMEs, entrepreneurs and exports, then it should tax them less. Taxing them with one hand, then inventing costly, inefficient hair brained schemes to give some of it back, is the classic example of a government getting involved in things it has no right to. Same with Working Tax Credits – government takes thousands in various taxes from the low paid, then gives some of it back. Would it not be better, and save £billions in bureacracy and wasted admin, to just not take quite so much in the first place?

      During the EU referendum I used to say there is no problem or challenge facing the modern world that the EU cannot make more complicated, expensive and much worse. The same applies, for the same reasons, to the UK government. We already have three, better established, political parties pushing variations of more tax, bigger government. UKIP needs to sing a different tune, and will reap the reward of being the only party, since Thatcher, to do so. The British people are by nature conservative with a small c, they are rightly sceptical of government of all stripes. UKIP with a clearly expressed patriotic, controlled immigration, small government, low tax philosophy would hoover up votes up and down the country. UKIP banging on about “investing in our NHS” is indistinguishable from the rest and, as we are seeing, is giving people no reason whatsoever to vote for them.

      • Excellent comment.

      • “.. it is undeniable”?! It most certainly is – deniable.
        This is the 21st Century, Gary. People will no longer accept being downtrodden – and nothing grows on trees.
        Our 2015 GE experience, let alone Stoke, should have told you that. How much more evidence do you need to show you’re mistaken?

        • How is any of that a rational argument in response to the points I’ve made?

          You would have UKIP as one of four political parties offering left of centre policies. If people want to vote for bigger state, more tax, comprehensive schools and all the rest they will vote Lib/Lab/Con.

          I, and the vast majority of UKIP members and supporters would have UKIP march onto the vacated right of centre and claim it for our own.

          Your idea, as we are already seeing at the ballot box, dooms UKIP to electoral irrelevance.

          My idea of a patriotic, controlled immigration, low tax, low regulation, small government UKIP guarantees electoral success, if we can clearly articulate what is, after all, UKIP’s founding philosophy. We would Hoover up millions of votes, the white van man and Mondeo man that voted for Thatcher in the 80s, Blair in the 90s and have been left behind since.

          Brexit is no longer a vote winner. Your policies and philosophy have never been vote winners. They would be a disaster for UKIP, and the UK. What UKIP needs is a unique selling point, a reason for people to vote for us rather than the rest. A clearly articulated right of centre philosophy will be unique in UK politics and is in tune with millions of voters.

          But, yeah, let’s follow your advice and ban grammar schools, raise taxes to pay for “our NHS” and see how far we get.

          • Wrong on every count.
            No other party would stop immigration (you don’t seem to want to either)or islamisation. That woukld be our USP, and a measure of progressive policies designed to help the working and middling classes would be the essential concomitant – WE NEED BOTH ASPECTS TOGETHER TO HAVE ANY CHANCE.
            “The clearly articulated right of centre philosophy” is actually the preserve of the Tory Party, Gary, at least in the electorate’s eyes, and if you think we can shove them off that then you’re deluded. Working people are NOT stupid enough to vote for tax cuts for the rich.
            And as I’ve told you several times, UKIP’s current constitution reflects the Farage putsch and bears little resemblance to Sked’s original. We have to move on from that and your obsession with ‘libertarianism’ if we are to survive, let alone succeed.
            For readers who wish to read my argument in full it’s set out in a series of articles published here in January and February.

      • Dear Gary,

        It is a given that in the real world, SMEs need govt assistance, particularly if they wish to export. Apart from financial assistance, it goes without saying that the govt acts as intermediaries between exporters and importers – linking and networking both groups together.

        And, yes, it needs to be also repeated that SMEs need low taxes. But low taxes does not necessarily have to translate into smaller govt and by extension less govt spending as the logical corollary.

        In a fiat currency environment (contrary to mainstream, consensus economic understanding – fake knowledge that is being peddled as gospel truth), there is no necessity for taxes to fund anything.

        Here’s a link to an article written by Mr Beardsley Ruml, statistician and one time chairman of the New York Fed and one of the architects of Bretton Woods.

        http://constitution.org/tax/us-ic/cmt/ruml_obsolete.pdf

        Taxes do not have to fund but they regulate —– private sector behaviour and spending.

        Taxes are critical to rein in on the behaviour of Big Business (aggressive tax avoidance and perhaps even evasion), Big Finance (aggressive speculative activities) and Big Bank (aggressive manipulative activities – e.g. Libor rate-fixing).

  11. Dear Gary,

    Thatcherism as economic ideology has been disastrous for the North. It is therefore a prescription for electoral disaster.

    Thatcherism which is simply a combination of monetarism and neo-liberalism *is* the default ideology of the consensus and therefore of the establishment. (To be fair, it was ‘Sunny’ Jim and Healey who embraced monetarism first)

    The Great Financial Crisis is one recent example of neo-liberalism’s abject failure with disastrous consequences, no less.

    Having said that, the battle with Thatcherism is not fought from the side of Socialism. Please do not confuse Thatcher’s political and legal battles with Arthur Scargill, militant trade unions, Ken Livingstone and the Greater London Council with that of the RADICAL ALTERNATIVE to the mainstream, establishment, the dominant/ prevailing ideology of the day.

    The battle with Thatcherism and economic libertarianism is fought from the side of PRAGMATISM AND ‘OPERATIONAL REALITY’ of how the economy actually works (within a fiat currency environment).

    By the way, Thatcher increased the role and size of the State in her quest to roll back the frontiers of the State.

    – Public sector increased rather than decreased
    – Welfare spending increased rather than decreased
    – Administrative institutions and bureaucracies multiplied rather than substracted (GLC is a case in point)

  12. Gary’s distortion and exaggeration (see below) have to be answered with three simple questions:
    Does he think immigration is the biggest threat to our country, or not?
    If so, how does he intend to ever be able to stop it without getting our working people onside?
    And how does he hope to do that when it is quite clear:
    a. That Thatcherite economic polices result, to give but one example, in us having to run off to other countries to build power stations for us, and
    b. Such policies can’t win us elections?

    The first to realise the hard political realities and what we have to do to win should get our full support. Clearly the current hierarchy don’t. From what we have seen of Banks there is at least more chance.

  13. “Putting comprehensive and radical policies on a website…” Great idea but there is more chance of the UKIP leadership emigrating to the moon. They might as well be there already for all the use they are.

    Surely there is a way for the good people in the many branches to work together and get rid of Nuttall and the rest of the cabal who are destroying UKIP?

    I was prepared to wait a little while until joining UKIP but the antics in Stoke set that back; when I saw Nuttall’s leaflet supporting the invader he was finished in my view. That one statement alone was enough to show beyond doubt that he is not fit to be leader; there is plenty of information around for one to assess the capabilities of Oakden and cronies.

  14. May one ask, is P Nuttall aware of the strong feelings held by many UD posters? has any rep of the membership approached him? and enlightened him as to the dissatisfaction?
    If A Banks can “demand” then by the same token so can a member surely.

  15. As far as I am concerned Aaron Banks was the only realistic way to stop the rot. Today UKIP is in 4th place in a YouGov poll, at just 9%.

    We need deliberately populist policies.
    We need the courage to say what the public are afraid to say.
    We need at least one charismatic confident spokesman.
    We need a socially conservative nationalist agenda.
    We need a proud and enthusiastic membership.

    Since Nigel left we have none of these.

    I didn’t join a UKIP run by Carswell, Evans, Hamilton and O’Flynn, but they’re in charge and they’re driving UKIP into the ground. Is Paul Nuttall our leader? Where is he?

    UKIP is becoming harder and harder to support, even for me. I’m wondering why I still call myself a Kipper. My party no longer says things I agree with. Who will stand up against mass immigration? Against Islamisation? Who will speak for England? Who will fight the for real democracy against the liberal elite?

    • You speak for me, SK – Either we are in the wrong party, or those that agree with the direction of UKIP now are. It can’t be be both.

  16. Well written piece with a lot of truth in it, but I think it’s being too hard on Banks.

    He’s not merely an egotist, but played a major part in achieving the victory of June 23 with ideas & putting serious amounts of financing into the campaign, which I’m not confident would have been won without it given the narrow margin of the victory; he has also provided major financing to UKIP in the recent past.

    He’s also a driven, dynamic individual with genuinely radical major policy ideas (which Nuttall appeared bereft of at Stoke) – as can be seen from his online activity, recent session with an HoC Committee, & interview with Galloway on his RT show ‘Sputnik’ – with a grasp of Politics, Philosophy & Economics, & on the practically of how to deliver them.

    Banks was crass to place Nuttall in the impossible situation of demanding the Chairmanship of the party publicly (from the ?able entity that is Oakden) for his continuance of providing financial support for UKIP, & I agreed with most of the content of Nuttall’s letter in response – he had no choice in saying no to such an ultimatum to maintain his authority, but the decision of with-holding of Bank’s membership re-newel until he’s “presented” himself before the N.E.C. on what is clearly a “Banks must kowtow before Nuttall, Evans, Carswell & O’Flynn” (notice the retinue that Nuttall is now keeping closely about himself on the throne), & on the basis that he stops debating UKIP’s current course in public (democratic move?) is equally as bad, & sly with it at the same time, & UKIP can ill afford to be driving talent & finance out of the party as pettily as this does.

    As some1 who publicly supported Nuttall’s candidacy as far back as Woolfe’s, & had arguments about it with many UKIP members, he has reduced his standing by this move, & the mistakes are mounting up a bit.

    • Too hard on Banks? Given the (existential) importance of keeping the party radical, it is more than crass that he squandered an opportunity for reasons, probably, of vanity as much as principle.

      • Banks is legitimately concerned as to where Nuttall’s leadership is currently steering UKIP. Your presentation of this issue merely in terms of his vanity is missing the point as to what’s going on here, which is a contest for UKIP’s political soul, & you are unjustly downplaying also the role Banks played in the June 23 victory, which was v. substantial.

        • We are all concerned about where Nuttall and his clueless coterie are taking the party.

          Banks’ played a part as did many, many others. It was plain stupid to issue a public ultimatum if his motives were genuinely to seek the best for the party and restore its mojo. It was Machiavellian, anddestructive if it was a deliberate ploy to engineer a prelude to forming his own party. In the latter case a contempt of the members for presuming the party is a plaything. Disdain for Nuttall & co is not a justification for the way he is going abut things.

          Nigel stated recently on LBC (well after Stoke) that forming another party was wrong.

  17. Everyone wants their small party to be the final answer – victory march down Whitehall and forever in power building utopia. They never are. They are vehicles hopefully able to carry forward a cause until their limitations halt them. Then you need something else which will be able to move further forward. So Banks is egoman? Farage does a bit of that!

    Who cares if he can carry us forward further until his limitations halt him. If obviously!

    Waiting for the perfect to move forward means you never will. There was another party before UKIP. UKIP grabbed the baton when that party was killed by its limitations. Now someone else needs to seize it from UKIP. It’s done without Nigel barring a miracle just like the one before it was done for other reasons.

    Don’t make the perfect the enemy of the good.

  18. Stout says “- not a single mention of policy”.

    Well, if Banks follows the proposals outlined in his open letter to Paul Nuttall, policies will be decided by the members.

    We know that Team Nuttall did not want members to have any say on policy. They wanted to feel free to make up policies on the hoof like the one in the infamous leaflet.

    Whatever you may think of Banks and his motives, anything must be better than the present shambles (UKIP now down to 9% in the polls). And getting rid of Nuttall alone won’t make a blind bit of difference. The whole damn lot need clearing out and they’re all clinging on to their positions like limpets.

    So, if there were only two choices (Banks or the present lot) give me Banks any time.

    • No thanks Thomas, that option got these Isles into the odious state we find ourselves currently, that is voting for the best of the worst.

      • When you only have two choices, surely you always vote for the best of what is available? I don’t know why you say “of the worst”. Without Farage, no referendum. Without Banks, no referendum. Without Farage or Banks, no UKIP.

        • That is precisely the way the lab/lib/con want it, you do not out of desperation make a hasty choice then repent for evermore.
          Without Farage or Banks no UKIP, that is bilgewater.
          And I have been a Farage follower since he took over the leadership originally.

  19. I think it is a bit unfair to attack Banks in this way, particularly his request to be chairman. The other major party donors were given positions (Mills and Bown are both deputy treasurers) and the other big donor / fundraiser Stuart Wheeler was Treasurer (note, current fundraiser Bickley has been a joke in terms of funds raised, according to electoral commission records he has donated nothing himself and only raised £30k in the last quarter for the party as a whole). Other major donors including Hargreaves had wanted a major say in terms of how their money got spent (he would only give money once he had decided how it was to be spent, and this went to the heart of why he finally stopped giving). Desmond (who was presumably brought in by O’Flynn) got access to the leadership and the base of supporters who were the target market of the Express, for him it is a business decision.

    Maybe chairman was a bit of an overreach but I think this reflects his despair at the state of the party from an organisational and policy perspective. Who would hand over their hard-earned cash to people who either wanted to waste it or else spend it on their personal self-promotion? I believe this is why he wanted to be chairman, he wanted to put in significant funds but be able to control how they were spent.

    In terms of policy development, the last GE manifesto seems to have been pulled together without any structured input from the members, partly because of the rushed way in which it was done (Seems Tim Aker was supposed to do it, but didn’t, hence Evans had to step in to save the day and as a result ‘wing it’). It was certainly an improvement on the GE2010 manifesto but that was a pretty low bar. However, the wrong lessons seem to have been taken away. Instead of thinking ‘oh, that manifesto wasn’t bad, let’s continue to develop policy this way’ they should have thought ‘wow, that was a bad process, lets put a new policy making process in early in time for next election’.

    For one, I shall wait and see what Banks comes up with before deciding what to do, but given the people who are now in charge in UKIP and the lack of any policy agenda then odds are I will jump.

    • A lo of sensible comments and I do understand everyone wanting to shake things up. But Banks did not make a “request”. He issued an ultimatum in public.

      I agree that donors should have assurances about how their money is used. Becoming Chairman is not the only way to do that.

  20. Stout, I agree completely that it should never have come to this. But ordinary people out there are just too frustrated that UKIP no longer represent them as they wish to be represented, they will clutch at any straw, and Banks proposed party may be one.
    The letter to Banks has come late in the day, and is full of ‘conditions’. His offer should have been accepted when it was made, I believe many in UKIP were desperate that it would be – now, what can we hope for? There will be no reorganization, no promise of policies we can be proud of, as yet, and if they ever come, they will be against the background of the Stoke leaflet, which will always be,thrown in our face.
    We don’t need policies to Please members, though that would be nice – we need policies that people actively want to vote for, on a website, as you said previously, that can be accessed at the click of a mouse.
    Meanwhile, time ticks away. The most damning comment I read on Twitter, which was meant to support Nuttall was ‘he is in a difficult place at the moment’.
    Please! That is where teenagers are – next, he will be needing a ‘safe space’.
    I don’t mean to be disloyal, but I can’t help it – UKIP is going down, in the polls, in people’s estimation, and I have no idea how it can be saved.

    • Dee, I do understand. But a public ultimatum from Banks? Why public? No way in a million years could Nuttall sack Oakden and appoint Banks in his place (even if he wanted to) once the ultimatum was public.

      I maintain that the policy vacuum creates the space for all these games, Banks’ included.

      • I know you do, Stout, and I respect you, but we cannot duck the fact for ever that, no matter what Nigel does or doesn’t think of Nuttall, he is hopeless as our leader, and completely discredited in the eyes of the public. And always will be. We will never get votes! Votes mean support! Support means members! Support means we shape the agenda, whether or not we have MP’s! That’s UKIP’s role! Nuttall’s tweet today that UKIP is the party of the striver was just uninspiring, although I was tempted to point out that many of us are striving to get UKIP back on course – then I thought, what’s the point.
        We only have to remember that Suzanne Evans said to John R-E on LBC that members could never be allowed to determine policy, remember that Evans and co are in the driving seat, remember that we have a Leader unable to stand up to them, to clearly see where UKIP is.
        Frankly I would rather support Anne Marie’s work privately than renew my membership. Arron, for all his hubris, was a hope, a hope that, if he was Chairman, our party might not be going in the right direction but at least it would be organized properly. Soon the only members left will be those actively supporting what the Leadership is doing (there must be some) so no one will be left to vote to change direction, and perhaps that is the plan.
        I have no idea.

        • Personally, I think the party is doomed with Evans as `head of policy’and the rest of the weak and vacillating seeking personal comfort and `respectability’ over principle. I am hanging on and hoping against hope.

          Anne Marie feels the cause is best advanced through a party like UKIP. Thus we should continue to fight our corner in UKIP for a while longer.

          Banks is not the saviour people think. If he was he would have been cleverer and not pursued a tactic guaranteed to fail. Ever see or hear him on important issues like Sharia?

          To win me over he needed to have led with policy then a structure to promote those policies and persuade the electorate. Everyone leads on structure – all a displacement activity for confronting the policy vacuum.

          Personally, I’m giving the party six months (until Sept conference). It’s no longer Doncaster because Nuttall favours somewhere on the south coast but can’t decide where exactly.

          I hope against hope but suspect I will be gone by Oct.

          • Stout, I agree with what you say above – and, while it might be heresy to say so, I am not sure that Nigel has the energy for the sort of fight Anne Marie is willing to undertake – and who could blame him. I shall see what, if anything, she is able to do with the NEC at the end of the month, and then ask her what she would like us to do.
            Fingers crossed we just just get something to hang on to, but I fear not.

  21. So much to agree in SY’s observations and yet completely opposite conclusions.

    If we reject Banks we will loose UKIP. The clique already ignore the constitution, will never put forward the radical policies you seek and the membership will shrivel away. Re-read Tomas Slivnik’s piece after Stoke, RedUkip etc.

    As chairman he, Banks, would primarily be responsible for the organisation of the Party. Not the achievement, not the direction. And ukip has and is being failed by the organisation which the clique have successfully infiltrated. So no radicalism. No JRE or AMW, no electoral success to celebrate AND NO PLANS TO CHANGE THE ORGANISATION THEY CONTROL. imho.

    Nigel is the key. If he goes with “ukip 2”, the fun starts again. If not, it’s done. As you say the window is closing and pale Brexit will duly emerge with sharia May, Hammond and co. (And I will be recommending my daughter emigrates before she starts a family.)

    The awful thing is the situation reminds we of why I gave up as a tory activist in 2008 or so. Cameron, his A lists, utter contempt for the membership and associations. Sound familiar?

    I joined ukip in 2009 to find out about it but found little of interest until Nigel became prominent with his brand of outspoken common sense which hit the spot for me, so I got active again. Even stood in 2015. And would happily do so again for any party that offers his brand of ukip radicalism.

    It strikes me that picking holes in Banks is cutting off your nose to spite your face. Or a Freudian slip. If the alternative offered by Banks is a party that actually supports Nigel and gets organised to accordingly, without the carpet naggers, that’ll do for me.

    • No-one is stopping Banks `selflessly’ funding and promoting re-organisation and professionalisation. He doesn’t need to be Chairman to do that. He just needs to accept the invitation to the NEC and get the business case accepted.

      It may be that he has an `only I can do it’ case to put. But a published ultimatum showed his lack of skill.

      I agree the party faces the abyss. I do not believe Banks is the white knight so many think. Had he appealed, were he to accept a perfectly reasonable invitation then I too might support him for Chairman.

      His real message is promote me or I will set about trying to destroy you.

      • I understand your concern, and am ambivalent about Banks in many ways, but I think Alan has it about right.

        As well as his money, Banks also brings his skills in organising and running a sizeable and successful commercial organisation. It is this professionalism that UKIP currently so obviously lacks. Whilst has insistence in seeking to secure the position of chairman for himself may not be to everyone’s taste, having a pro in that position may be just what UKIP needs to survive and grow.

        So, while Banks may be far from perfect, he is offering UKIP a lifeline that it would do well to consider seriously. Add to that the fact that we desperately need Nigel back on board fully as the main public figurehead (irrespective of what official position he may hold within the party).

        Let’s face it – the current way of doing things is resulting in a shambles. Carry on like this & there won’t be a UKIP to argue about.

  22. I still believe that any funding even amounting to two or three million would be cheap if from a manipulative party looking for a controlling interest in UKIP, the establishment long term have an awful lot to lose if seats were won by UKIP in parliament,the cry of start another party was always a defeatist exit,fix what you have should be the order of the day
    Is there anyone with greater brain power than I ( which gives a lot of scope)be willing to collate an online membership numbers block protest
    To Paul Nuttall and co naming main issues that need attention urgently IMHO
    this would have more clout than indevidual e mails.

  23. Of course policies are the key – but they’d better be the right ones. Your prescription is Thatcherism, which has had its day and continues to fail.
    Mrs Thatcher was only popular because she sorted out the overweaning unions and the Argies. Her legacy was industrial decline, the absurd over-balancing of the City of London and the counter-movement of Blairism.
    And don’t forget Farage has made some disparaging remarks about UKIP members too, not just the NEC – and has been conspicuously unable to win elections.
    Arron Banks’ overtures should be welcomed, providing he gets members’ support (when does anybody ever ask us?), and providing his policies command our support. We need his money, his energy and his communication talents to transform our moribund organisation – and we also need JRE and AMW.
    On Banks’ likely policy stance, he’s made some good comments – on the need for a national investment bank, and for IHT.
    We have to do SOMETHING soon or we’ll disappear – we cannot go on with the present leadership or Tory mindset. And we cannot afford to fracture the patriotic movement.

    • My prescription is Thatcherism? Have you commented on the right article?

      Banks’ overtures were welcomed. He has been invited to make a presentation at the next NEC meeting as per Nuttall’s letter. He just isn’t getting Oakden’s job having failed to adduce any case against the person Nigel and Crowther appointed and continued by Nuttall. Banks made several exaggerated claims to newspapers and omitted crucial details from Nuttall’s letter to give a wholly misleading account.

      Banks is not anti-establishment’ just lamenting his own lack of status in it. He is no politician. He thinks being anti-establishment is a policy. It’s a stance only.

      Banks can appeal against his renewal being postponed or conditional and can afford a top QC to draft it for him. If he is a committed kipper, and not a carpetbagger, why hasn’t he appealed? (I agree Nigel and Carswell are also guilty of improper public remarks – part of his case on appeal if he made one).

      The cult of Banks is as much a problem as with other `personalities’

      None of this would matter if the party had a full set of policies appropriate for national elections.

      • Yes Stout, our much-quoted ‘constitution’, the one Nigel replaced the original 1993 version with, is pure Thatcherism larded as ‘libertarianism’ – and never going to give us the mass support of the working and middling classes we need.
        Totally agree the primacy of policy.
        Wouldn’t it be interesting if South Thanet has to be re-fought – and Nigel goes for it?!

        • Yes, Quercus, UKIP has no need of Thatcherism, an ideology that won millions of working and middle class votes, 3 General Elections and would have won a 4th.

          What we need is to follow your advice and adopt the ideology of Foot and Kinnock. They were clearly ahead of their time and history will show them to be the true winners of 1980s politics. The policies that you and they favour may have been resoundingly rejected back then, but the electorate is clearly ready for left wing, big government establishment ideology. Look at Trump. Policies to promote comprehensive schools, new and higher taxes, bigger government. That way lies electoral success.

          Nurse! the medication please!

          If we’re going to base the party on 1980s political ideologies, can we at least pick the one that won? Why follow the example of all the other parties and vacate the right of British politics in a rush for the centre left? We can’t fight the establishment on their own ground and terms. Much better to claim the ground that they have vacated as our own. UKIP has, and is in danger of missing, an opportunity to claim the entire centre-right of UK politics as it’s own territory. We can just walk in unopposed and hoover up millions of votes, simply by being true to our own principles and being bold enough to say what needs to be said.

          I presume you actually support leaving the EU? If so, ask yourself why? Is it because you are pro-democracy, hate the EU’s overbearing interference, over-regulation and waste? Then why are you opposed to UKIP adopting the same approach to British domestic government and politics as it has to the EU?

          UKIP had a huge opportunity to extend its anti-EU message seamlessly into British domestic politics. Brexit is dead as a vote-winner, for at least 2 years. However the principles behind Brexit, the reasons why we wanted to leave the EU in the first place, are still very relevant in British politics.

          UKIP only has a future as a right of centre, small government, low tax, low regulation, anti-establishment, pro-personal responsibility & individual freedoms, tough on crime, patriotic party. It would be the only such party in British politics. It would be consistent with UKIP’s history and constitution. The attempts of you and others to drag UKIP leftward are, as we are seeing, condemning the party to electoral irrelevance.

          • You clearly haven’t understood a thing in my articles, Gary. I’m as much against the establishment and the EU as you are ever likely to be, but this is not Trump’s America.
            Yor are putting your small state stuff ahead of any chance of stopping immigration. It’s you that’s dragging us to irrelevance, not me.

          • So your articles don’t call for higher taxation, more government control, the promotion of comprehensive schools and an end to grammar schools? If this isn’t what you’re advocating, I suggest you re-write them.

            At least have the intellectual honesty to stand by what you are arguing for. Your calls for radical, anti-establishment policies are nothing more than a Trojan horse when the policies you advocate are more of the same old, failed, centre-left consensus that has served Britain so badly these 40 years.

            On the plus side, nobody in the UKIP membership or wider support agrees with you. On the negative side, those in the party leadership who determine policy have some sympathy with you. Unless this changes, UKIP will continue its death spiral until there is just you, Evans, O’Flynn and possibly Nuttall left. A unified party of four.

      • Many a person Stout Yeoman has yearned for a party with good policies and no personality cult. The public don’t vote for it. That’s why politicians are always trying to get in the media. Recognition is so important. Up to a point you have to have a little bit of the personality cult in politics or to put it another way be seen as a personality. That’s why politicians and actors are so close.

  24. Stout,

    Most fair minded individuals would agree with the thrust of your argument and there can be little doubt that the longer the infighting goes on the more damage will be done. But I can’t agree with your conclusions regarding Arron Banks. Of course he understands Nigel’s value politically, but it’s difficult to see how he is hanging on to anyone’s coat tails. I believe his desire to see the party in power to be genuine and that his frustration understandable, as you yourself intimate. That it has come to a head now was inevitable, given that Carswell is destroying the UKIP vote in England almost as effectively as Hamilton is killing it in Wales. No doubt UKIP will be “creamed” in May, but it won’t be Banks to blame, we all know the reasons for that and judging by Paul’s email, there is literally no one that can do anything about it.

    • If Banks truly cared about UKIP rather than himself, if he had respect for ordinary members, he would not make the public statements he does. If he was committed to the party – a sine qua non of being chairman surely – he would appeal against the blocking of his membership renewal.

      He isn’t, he hasn’t, because he is about himself only. He attends UKIP conferences only with and for as long as Nigel. He does not stay to listen to branch motions, to talk with ordinary kippers, to take the pulse of the party.

      Did he invite Oakden and Nuttall to meetings at Millbank Tower to discuss his “desire to see the party in power” and how that might be achieved, offering to fund reforms and offering practical proposals? Or did he just publish an ultimatum to Nuttall and support that with carping, negative tweets? It was the latter and you think that fits him for a senior role in politics? I don’t I am afraid.

      It was an unskilled, doomed to fail attempt at buying a coup. Anyone with half a brain saw it would fail the moment he released his letter. If he did not see it then he is a fool. If he knew what we all saw then he proved himself dishonest and untrustworthy.

      I agree the party needs shaking up but not by the cult of Banks. He is no white horse riding in to save us.

      • Maybe we UKIP members should club fund him a suit of cloths? a nice gesture / message.
        I also agree the party needs shaking up…urgently.

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