Ukip Victory For Wales

It may be a strange thing to say, but last night’s English council elections, and the advances made by Ukip, should provide great encouragement for those of us who want the diverging interests and needs of Wales and England put into sharper focus.

Most of Ukip’s votes seem to have come from disillusioned Conservatives, but neither Labour nor Lib Dem voters are immune to Ukip’s appeal. There are a number of reasons for this, not least that those who sit in Westminster have not been so distanced from us, the common herd, for almost two hundred years. Which might be accepted if they were perceived to be honest, competent and capable. They are not. Add to a distant and incompetent government an uninspiring opposition, an economic recession, a growing sense that the English are treated shabbily both at home and abroad, and Ukip was almost guaranteed to succeed. (Nick Griffin and what’s left of the BNP must be ruing the fact that if they could only have shaken off the skinhead-thicko-racist image then much of Ukip’s success could have been theirs. But with one foot in the English gutter and the other in the Third Reich they never had a chance.)English elections

Seeing as these were exclusively English local elections (the only election in Wales being Ynys Môn, returning to the democratic fold) why am I even writing about it? Because . . . Ukip success could be excellent news for those of us who understand that what is promoted as ‘consensus’ invariably results in us Welsh being screwed. I’m also writing this to counter the responses of the Left in Wales, patriotic or otherwise, who detest Ukip so much that they blind themselves to the potential advantages to Wales, and just fall in with the Guardianista Left in throwing up their hands and wailing, ‘Isn’t it just awful!’

So what are these ‘advantages’ I’m talking about? Ukip is an English nationalist party; to pretend it’s anything else is dishonest. As dishonest as the party itself using ‘UK’ in its name. For Ukip’s UK is nothing but Greater England. The party’s attitude to us and the Scots is, ‘We’ll get along just fine as long as you do as we tell you’. Which may not sound too promising for us Welsh, but consider these possibilities.

Ideological politics has been dying a slow death in the UK and Wales for over twenty years. The process began with the deposing of Margaret Thatcher in 1990 and was completed with the creation of New Labour a few years later. All parties – Plaid Cymru included – then piled into the centre ground with the result that a ‘consensus’ was arrived at based on the suppression of ideology, the belief that endlessly repackaging money could be the basis of a national economy, and allowing oneself to be carried along by those taking us towards a new world order. Throw an economic recession into the mix and it begins to explain how a party of golf club bigots could become the hottest thing in English politics.

No matter what the major parties may be saying publicly, they know that Ukip’s strength is growing because an increasing number of English voters no longer trust Labour or Conservatives to deliver; first, on ‘Europe’ (i.e. pulling out); and then on ‘immigration’ (i.e. allowing far fewer immigrants). To reassure these people – and more importantly, to regain their votes – both major parties will have to shift their positions on the two issues. But it won’t end there. For being essentially an English nationalist party Ukip also resents the money ‘wasted’, and the concessions made, to Scotland and Wales. It will insist that funding to both countries be cut, perhaps even that devolution be abolished. Or maybe Ukip will demand a parliament for England. For don’t expect subtlety, or carefully-considered policies; expect more of what will appeal to existing and potential Ukip voters.

English elections 2Which means that what really matters is how this English return to gut-instinct politics will be received in Wales. All parties in the Assembly are agreed that devolution is here to stay. And I believe they mean it. Which could put both Labour and Conservative parties on course for confrontation with their London masters if the latter harden their positions towards Wales in order to fight off the Ukip threat. Perhaps more important than the positions of the political parties is the attitude of the Welsh people; for they are now overwhelmingly supportive of devolution and would strongly resent any ‘English’ interference. Which is not to say that Ukip would not have support in Wales if it tried to force a London government into abolishing the Welsh Assembly. (Let’s remember that one of our four MEPs is from Ukip.) But we know where most of that support would come from; it would expose a divide that many would prefer to keep papered over.

The growing strength of Ukip, and its influence on both Conservatives and Labour, can only be good for our cause. Because it will alienate so many of our people and make them want to erect ‘defences’ against an increasingly selfish and xenophobic England. Leaving our politicians with little alternative but to follow suit (if they wish to persist in their collective delusion of being our ‘leaders’). So ignore the outraged moaners of the Left; England moving to the Right and prioritising her national interests would be wonderful news . . . because it would provoke a sizeable section of our nation into rethinking the relationship with England. So stuff consensus . . . radical change invariably comes from conflict or confrontation. Wales needs radical change. Keep up the good work, Nige! 

P.S. Within minutes of this post going out I came across this tweet. TweetDon’t know who he is, I don’t follow him, he doesn’t follow me, and I doubt if he reads my blog. But I think it proves my point.

31 thoughts on “Ukip Victory For Wales

  1. vlad the impala

    UKIP, God Bless ’em. As you say they’re an English nationalist party.. I used to think that the other ‘British’ parties were English nationalists as well, I was wrong about that, they care as little for the ordinary English bloke down the pub as they do for the Welsh and the Scots. LibLabCon have sold out to the globalisation mob and their loyalty is to elites in Europe or America or who knows where.

    Today the bloke down the pub and his missus snapped back at a political in-crowd who actually despise ‘the little people’ and their way of life. Just read all the tweets from the supporters of the One Nation Labour party decrying the ill-educated 25% who dared to vote for Farage. They haven’t even been to university my dear seems to be a common explanation, that and they must be nasty racists.

    So I was cheered up by the failure of UKIP to make any progress in Wales but in England, good for them, at least they are people who care for their country and detest those who are happy sell it down the river. By the way I understand that UKIP now accept devolution – much to the annoyance of their supporters in Wales who were not consulted by the often dictatorial Nigel. Independence for England, independence all round!

    1. Llew

      Jac is pretty much right, but Vlad is wrong. UKIP aren’t decent people who “care about their country”. They’ve actually had MEPs for years now and they’re a bunch of absolute crooks, just as corrupt (and proportionately worse) than the “LibLabCon”. As to supporting devolution or accepting it, that’s news to me, but as recently as 2011 their platform in Wales was to give all power back to Westminster. They’re arseholes, sorry. They’ve never spoken out on issues like Iraq (a globalist plot) which they supported. I agree with Jac really saying it shows Wales going a different way, but that doesn’t mean welcoming UKIP in England out of spite. The reason Wales is or should be different is because we’re so unlike UKIP. Not because we’re in any way similar.

  2. Hmmm I’m not so sure about this gleeful hand-clapping over UKIP’s successes in Ing-er-land. One BIG factor:

    England’s population = 56,100,000 (give or take a few unknown residents from far away places)
    Scotland’s population = 5,295,000 (a significant number being residents from England)
    Wales’ population = 3,063,456 (a big number being residents from England)

    Now, even with my time eroded rusty mathematics, those numbers tell me that unless we get independence rubber-stamped by Europe & the rest of the world, BEFORE the English nationalists (UKIP) take over control of England and by extension the rest of the UK, how do you think 8,358,456 stacks up against 56,100,000?

    Then imagine a free for all, opened up under Farage – he’s daft enough to drag voting Englanders into a referendum decision about Scottish & Welsh independence issues – and you don’t need to be a genius to work out the result. Civil war? Never – we’re well passed that & FAR too civilized!

    Adolf came to power in the thirties under similar circumstances (he was totally ridiculed by the other German political parties during his rise to power). He took over most of Europe under the German swastika. How did he do it? By unleashing the simmering hostilities of the German population that felt really hard done to. He gave them the opportunity not to be curtailed by sporting fair play and natural justice. Farage could do exactly the same if he took away the bonds of restraints from the English Sun & Mail reading low life, plus the “odd” Tory.

    Like Adolf he has charisma, he knows what tickles people’s fancy, he’s also extremely good at spotting opportunities. He has simple policies that dim people can understand – he’s also a good orator & motivator. He fights with gloves off against Queensbury rules opposition. He also gets invited with stunning frequency to parade on programmes like Question Time where he does a brilliant job of tickling the ears of the audience.

    Now tell me again please – how’s that good news for Wales in the future bigger picture?

    Wakey wakey folks! It also happened under the noses of our gullible friends in Europe about 70 years ago. Remember the clown coming off the plane waving a piece of paper and declaring “peace in our time”? The circumstances are ripe for it to happen again in the 21st century as history repeats itself (as it always does eventually).

    1. Jac

      Any comparison between Farage and Hitler is ridiculous. One is a clubhouse ‘character’ (who might not even be leading the party in a year’s time), the other was a swivel-eyed fanatic.

      My argument is simple: the growing strength of Ukip will force a re-think in English politics, especially within the Conservative Party; this hardening of attitudes in England will pay dividends in Wales and Scotland.

      1. The circumstantial comparisons are far from ridiculous my friend, on the contrary the parallels are undeniably similar. You may say Farage is a tap room rabble rousing “character” whilst Hitler was a “swivel-eyed fanatic” – that is a serious mistake. We’re not going to see Farage blacken and flatten his hair grow a nostril mustach and wear an uniform. The real danger is that Farage is able to turn the heads of those more respectable elements amongst the voters in England, who would not give the likes of Nick Griffin a second glance. He is obviously more than a blip on the radar – he is extremely clever at what he does exceedingly well and people generally are extremely gullible if given the right triggers. The figures following the recent elections show that clearly. now, if you were an UKIP member would you deselect him as your leader next year? I think not.

        German politicians viewed the greatest threat as coming from the communist party in the early thirties. The far right “rabble” in the guise of the Nazi party was ridiculed and dismissed as a bunch of no hope clownish fanatics that were just a thorn in the side of the established political system – a temporary manifestation of people’s temporary frustrations that would eventually melt away. They then made the crucial mistake of trying to use the Nazi element to try and weaken the communist threat. And you think that by encouraging UKIP’s success in England it will somehow make the Labour party different in Wales? Same mistake.

        In Germany the economic hardships following the first world war, coupled to an inept political establishment that still ran on the lines of the nineteenth century Germany was in the grip of the Great Depression with a population suffering from poverty, misery, and uncertainty, amid increasing political instability and ineptitude – distanced from the people. Sounds familiar?

        Hitler offered the Germans what they needed most, encouragement. He gave them heaps of vague promises while avoiding the details. He used simple catchphrases, repeated over and over. Have you listened to Farage recently?

        Adolf offered something to everyone: work to the unemployed; prosperity to failed business people; profits to industry; expansion of the army; social harmony and an end of class distinctions to idealistic young students; and restoration of German glory to those in despair. He promised to bring order amid chaos; a feeling of unity to all and the chance to belong. He would make Germany strong again; end payment of war reparations to the Allies; tear up the treaty of Versailles; stamp out corruption; keep down Marxism; and deal harshly with the Jews. Farage has just substituted the European Union for the post war union of the Allies, east European immigrants for Jews & The Maastricht Treaty for the treaty of Versailles. Still think the comparison is ridiculous?

        He appealed to all classes of Germans. The name of the Nazi Party itself was deliberately all inclusive – the National Socialist German Workers’ Party. Then there’s the UNITED Kingdom Independence Party – restoring the past glory and power of England and it’s minions. Where do you think Wales fits into that picture with Labour at the helm? Miraculously changed and suddenly potent? I don’t think so.

        There’s a real need to wake up and smell the coffee here. Placing your hope on the hypothesized reaction of a handful of ‘Reds’ in Cardiff Bay is ‘pie in the sky’.

        1. Jac

          We will obviously not agree on this. I’m at a loss to understand how anyone can view a petit bourgeois English xenophobe with very limited ambitions, to a dictator bent on exterminating whole peoples and conquering Europe (if not going further).

          If Farage is the monster you paint him then, once he starts showing his true colours, English voters will turn against him. They’ll put up with his anti-EU, anti-immigrant, rhetoric because many agree with him. But if he starts to sound more extreme, his support will fall away, because the English believe that ‘extremism’ is for foreigners.

          Apart from problems in Scotland and Ireland the UK has been the most stable and peaceful European State of recent centuries, since the ‘Glorious Revolution’ of 1688. The secret lies in a flexible system avoiding intransigence and ready to accommodate divergent views and new groups.

          This is how the new industrialists of the Industrial Revolution were allowed to rise in society, eventually marrying into the old aristocratic and mercantilist classes. Had they been excluded from the top tier – as happened elsewhere – Britain would have had a new class of very wealthy and very embittered people. Recipe for serious trouble. On the other side of the coin, Britain avoided the revolutions and social upheavals of continental Europe by treating the workers better. Flexibility, accommodation.

          The same will be seem with Farage. If it is agreed that he has a solid following, and these followers believe certain things need to change, then change we shall have. Not as much as Ukip demands, but enough to take the wind from his sails and leave Farage beached. But in the meantime, while his fleet has the wind in its sails, I say we make the most of it.

  3. a change of personnel

    I’m not sure I fully agree, UKIP will split the centre right and hard right vote in Wales as well as hovering up protest votes which simply serves to strengthen Labour’s unchallenged position due to the oppositions weakness.

    And as if to prove the point for all the progress Plaid Cymru made in Ynys Mon in South Wales where Leanne Wood claims she can win over voters Labour won 2 by-elections comfortably – a fragmented opposition serves Labour’s not Wales’s interests and I think a lot of people will be surprised at how many votes UKIP get in Wales in the UK and Assembly elections.

    1. Jac

      If Ukip has the effect on English politics I hope for, then, even if Labour is the major beneficiary in Wales, you have to ask what kind of Labour Party Wales will have in a few years. Because a hardening of attitudes in England will make many in Welsh Labour demand more power for Wales as ‘protection’.

      1. Dream on Jac. English nationalist ferver is more likely to spew over the border steam-rollering the Labour resistance in it’s path. Check the population figures for the mainland UK countries again. Politically we could see all three countries merged once again under the Unionist (English) flag with Farage at it’s helm. That’s why it’s so important to get independence for Wales & Scotland BEFORE that becomes a reality. Raising the sleeve of UKIP whilst the population of England is smarting under what they see as an attack and break-up of their ‘Union’ is not a sane option. Conversely we need to help stall the process.

        1. Jac

          The promise / threat of Farage becoming PM will guarantee Scottish independence and move Wales a long way along the road towards independence . . . but it ain’t never gonna happen, for reasons I gave in response to another of your dire prognostications.

          1. Don’t be offended, but I think you are seeing this in a very superficial and unsophisticated way. Farage is not stupid and should not be underestimated. To compare the obvious between him & Hitler is not what I’m saying, and it’s ridiculous to say so. Of course they are totally different in character & projection on the surface. This is 2013 the other was in 1930 seventy odd years apart and the world was a different place & people viewed things differently. What IS similar is the tactics being employed to whip up fervour. To dumb down Farage’s potential is a mistake – as it was a mistake to view Hitler as a jumped up corporal from the first world war with no substance or political nouse not to mention poor breeding. BIG mistake – don’t look at the obvious.

            People change very little it’s just the era that changes & our perception of things. Methods for change vary little, the psychology employed works as well today as it did threequarters of a century ago.

            To gain power is the first step (like becoming Chancellor of Germany) the real agenda is kept well hidden until the power is there. Make yourself the darling of the people, fly under the radar for as long as it takes, then take away the people’s democratic freedoms of choice. It may sound a bit far fetched at this time, but it’s a reality that can happen if the situation is ripe for it. Much stranger things have happened in the past & within a very short period – again history teaches us that. We shouldn’t fall into the trap either of saying that “there could never be a dictator here – there will never be another Adolf Hitler – we would never allow it”.

            All I’m saying is take away the obvious and never be complacent. As someone else has said on here the strange thing is Farage is picking up support in Wales of all places – and it’s not just amongst the English immigrants. This highlights the naivety of the masses. It’s a dangerous game. As for devolution being here to stay that could be snuffed out in the blink of an eye – if the wrong person has the power to do it.

  4. i understand where jac is coming from on this – and im sure he’s not the only political commentator in wales thinking and saying this. But think it would be naive of any of us to imagine that ukip are a peculiarly english phenomenon! As has been pointed out ukip garnered enough votes in wales in the 2009 european elections to gain a welsh MEP and there’s every chance they will do at least as well in next year’s european elections in wales. i was tho very interested to read that ukip no longer advocates the abolition of welsh devolution and if correct this is undoubtedly confirmation of jac’s assertion that devolution is here to stay (which it thankfully is of course).

    But i work with people who have indicated that they might vote for ukip and these people are not by any stretch of the imagination closet nazis or english nationalists – just ordinary welsh people who feel that none of the political parties in wales (or britain) listens to them or are addressing their fears and the economic problems they face on a daily basis. And sad to report that such people (and im sure we all know people like this) all too easily fall for ukip’s brand of right wing populism and it’s anti-immigration, anti european and anti politician solutions – tho im also sure such people know very little if anything at all about ukip’s less publicised policies .Such as its plans to privatise the nhs, to restore hanging, to make benefit clamaints do forced labour and to dismantle the welfare state and the public sector – sacking millions of people in the process. So it is the responsbibbility of people like ourselves to make sure more people in wales do become aware of ukip’s extremely nasty and extremly right wing politicies.

    but ukip in Wales will obviously take great heart from its performance in the english shires this week and we can expect them to raise their profile and activity in wales. Im sure their recently formed swansea branch will contest the forthcoming llansamlet by election in swansea and it wil be very interesting to see how they perform there?

  5. David

    Have you seen this? I’m not sure what Jonathan Edwards is referring to? :

    Jonathan Edwards ‏@JonathanPlaid

    “Absolutely amazed to see Labour strategists today saying that their party in Wales represents UKIP values #redtories #labourtorytagteam”

    1. I think you’ll find it’s not a domain name (JonathanPlaid) but simply a Twitter identity where the “@” is used in the reply line. “JonathanPlaid” is simply a recognition tag i.e. Jonathan Edwards “of” Plaid.

      1. @ A Turk

        I think you’ll find that domain names end with .com, .org etc., and that Jac knows a hash sign when he sees one. Like Farcebook, most of what is tweeted is bollox.

        1. No shit Sherlock! And there’s me missing that after 40 years as a qualified electronics engineer and the last 20 years as a professional in IT – including putting this site up for Jac after registering his domain name & hosting it for him (good job I remembered to put ‘net’ on the end of the DN for him isn’t it?).

          I don’t think Jac needs a wing man when it comes to protecting him from me, We understand each other very well when it comes to these things – thank you all the same!

          Incidentally what you refer to is the octothorpe, commonly referred to as the ‘Hash’ sign – which looks like this # not like this @ – the ‘at’ sign is also commonly called the at symbol ampersat, apetail or commercial at in this industry. The term octothorpe was coined by engineers at Bell Laboratories in the early 1960s, who wanted a name for one of two non-number function symbols on the first touch-tone keypads – it’s not a Twitter invention as some ‘newbies’ to the scene seem to think.

          But I suppose you knew all that anyway didn’t you?

  6. David

    “He (John Bufton) said his party “may look” in a few years at exploiting a possible split on the right in Welsh politics over the issue of devolution.” That’s interesting but there will be nor prizes for guessing which side of the split they will be on. I’ve been reading different accounts of what they think of Scottish and Welsh devolution. Anybody know for sure? But I’m sure they won’t want more devolution. The sentence above suggests that. I’m hoping that this anti-devolution and maybe even anti-Welsh voice will galvanize those who are for more powers to Wales. But there are so many unknowns; least of all how the shower in control of the Assembly will react. Interesting times.

  7. Llew

    UKIPs policy is for Welsh Westminster MPs to sit as a “Welsh Assembly” one week per month. They’ve changed the emphasis from abolishing the Assembly to abolishing Assembly Members. I get that they’re a manifestation of English nationalism, but they see themselves as UK/British unionists.

  8. One thing you can guarantee is that they’ll play their cards close to their chest so as not to give anything away. They will only give their true position on subjects such as Europe (safe ground) & immigration (another safe ground) & both very emotive subjects when it comes to collecting support. That’s all it’s about at this stage – a lure on popular subjects to gather support. They won’t give anything away about devolution for the same reason, but you can be as sure as God created little green apples that give you belly ache what their real views are on devolution. To Farage & Co. the individual UK countries are an automatic right of possession for England. Which of course will eventually make them even more popular over the border. At this point it would be silly to goad the voters of Wales & Scotland to rain on their parade! So it’s “keep you guessing” time right now. Not surprising.

  9. well the current president of ukip in scotland (a certain lord monckton) is on record as making this thoughtful observation on his fellow countrymen and women…”the scots are subsidy junkies whingeing like a trampled bagpipe as they wait for their next fix of English taxpayers’ money.”…..i think its safe to asuume that such comments…….when viewed in the light of ukip’s ‘surge’ in england last week…..can only provide a real boost to the Yes campaign there….be interesting to find out if any of monckton’s ukip colleagues have made simlialry offensive comments about the welsh? certainly wouldnt surprise me if they had….

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  10. this intervention by the former tory ‘big beast’ is i think very significant and shows there’s a real head of steam building up now on the anti-european side of british politics……

    if the tories can somehow manage to pull off an outright victory in the 2015 british general election then i think that in the referendum on eu membership that the tories are sworn to hold there’ll be a vote for the uk (or what remains of it by then) to withdraw from the european union…..and where that would leave wales exactly is anybody’s guess?…

  11. Llyn

    Regarding UKIP and Wales you might be interested in the recent thoughts of the UKIP Councillor Kevin Mahoney of Sully (Vale of Glamorgan) on “the discrimination against the majority non Welsh speaking population in Wales” and the large scale lying that accompanied the census in the Vale of Glamorgan in relation to the Welsh Language –
    You should be aware that although the elected councillor Mr Mahoney is convinced that many of his own constituents lied when filling out their census forms strangely he has not gone to the Police with his concerns/fantasies.

    The same Mr Mahoney has also unconvincingly attempted to spin his party’s recent failure in Anglesey and even more unconvincingly implied that UKIP does not pander to certain sections of the Welsh family who have moved here from England –

  12. That’s pretty predictable of Mr Mahoney and many others like him. UKIP is an English Nationalist party who view the British Isles as being theirs by right. Whether they poll the same level of support in Wales & Scotland is immaterial – as the population advantage of England does it for them. Add to that the wandering English xenophobes in both Wales & Scotland who have just gone for an amble beyond their border & then have a right to vote in our countries & you have a headache brewing for the future.

    I go back to what I said earlier in these posts, we can’t procrastinate on this one. Scotland & us (preferably) desperately need to have independence on statute BEFORE the Farage band wagon becomes a proper reality. What a mess if they managed to get their noses in to govern at Westminster through a coalition set-up (not unrealistic – as the Lib Dem cabal have shown – you don’t need that many seats when you’re needed to float the boat with someone else & thereby get one hand on the rudder). An even worse case scenario is if they got BOTH hands on the tiller in England. Disaster. That’s why I keep on saying how foolish it is for us to say it might be a good thing to encourage UKIP’s success in England – to make Labour supporters in Wales more devolution friendly. In your dreams.

    The reality is, if one day Farage DID get the power he craves then it could be goodnight devolution and/ or independence for Wales overnight. They could even rock the boat for Scotland if their referendum went pear-shaped for them in the mean time.

  13. Jac, you make a lot of sense. As a Scot it has become ever clearer that UKIP have absolutely no interest in keeping Scotland in the UK. They have virtually no support in Scotland, but have hardly tried to gain more. Scotland (and Wales, I think) are of no interest to them. BTW before I am accused of being a typical Scottish N/nationalist (lower or upper case) I was actually quite keen on UKIP until I saw its English nationalist side more clearly. I support their stance on Europe and, in better circumstances, would prefer Scotland to remain in the Union. However, as you rightly state, this English nationalism will alienate Scots. We will, unfortunately, be left with the dreadful Scottish parliament and Salmond the Euro-fanatic. May God help Scotland. If only the Scots would wake up, move away from political correct socialism and move toward leaving Europe, I would 100% support independence. As it is, I may have no other choice. There is a hard core of hatred among the English for the Scots. 300 years have past but the two nations (I can’t speak for Wales) have really moved no closer to each other. English nationalism, like its Scottish cousin, is obnoxious. Possibly the UK was only ever a temporary experiment. It worked well when it worked but joining the EU and the flood gates of immigration have helped to destroy the UK. It is imploding.

  14. Justpassingthrough

    As a supporter of UKIP and an Englishman I’d prefer it if the Union of Scotland Wales England were left as it is, division will make us all weaker.
    The big three have had their day, time to move on, a case of don’t knock it until you’ve tried it, the big three have kept our Nations apart not the people.

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