Russell Taylor – In praise of UKIP

Mainstream political parties must be spooked by the rise of UKIP, because they’ve paid it the compliment of slander.  By describing its members as racist, sexist clowns, they have inadvertently played into its hands. What they have failed to grasp is that their consensus on what respectable opinion looks like doesn’t hold much sway beyond the Westminster bubble and members of the chattering classes. Having spent years browbeating the public into holding the ‘right’ beliefs, they thought they had instilled a refined liberal conscience in everyone. They thought they could turn the searchlight on those who had left the ideological reservation and the nation would recoil in horror.

What they have failed to grasp is that conscience is a perk of prosperity. That’s why liberals have one. They’re rich enough to immunise themselves against the effects of tax hikes, rampant immigration, social permissiveness and dumbed-down schooling. They can busy themselves constructing a pleasing self-image – one that offers the zing of moral superiority and assuages the guilt complex that comes from wafting through life with such ease. The beauty of such superficiality is that it doesn’t require you to think too deeply about the big issues. Just help yourself to pieties from the ethical buffet: a slice of multiculturalism here and a dollop of social justice there, then head back to your table to purrs of approval from your fellow diners.

During New Labour’s credit-fuelled bubble, continuous economic growth was taken for granted. Once you’ve been hoodwinked into believing that prosperity and social order are facts of nature or the product of enlightened government, conservative values don’t make much sense, they just appear mean and petty. Politics becomes about lowering the criteria of success and removing the obstacles that stand between people and their rightful share of life’s bounty – things like objective values and codes of behaviour. In such a climate, it’s difficult to speak out against the likes of multiculturalism, irresponsible behaviour and the redistribution of wealth without looking like a bigot.

Much of the Conservative Party grew tired of being depicted as nasty and surrendered to this new moral order. They barely raised a peep while Labour created a cradle-to-grave entitlement system, built-up pointless bureaucracies, vandalised our education, hijacked our language, and corrupted our justice system. A large segment of the public were content to play along, too. Liberal beliefs are the perfect recipe for feeling good about yourself, especially if you can’t be bothered to muster any more thought or commitment than a putting on a charity wristband. As long as the good times were rolling, everyone could be a liberal for a day, a week, a year, or however long it took before the bailiff came a-knocking.

The chief beneficiary of the culture war has been the political class. Even ostensibly conservative politicians find the liberal model enticing, because when society is played out under the paternalistic big tent of the state, politicians are more than just administrators: they are the centre of our universe. The ideas that emerge from this culture are invariably designed to keep them at the centre of our lives. Even policies billed as making the case for self-determination, such as David Cameron’s ‘Big Society’, are less liberty-minded than they seem. An enterprise conducted under the aegis of the state is no more an authentic expression of freedom than a school trip or a day-release from jail.

Facing down the state behemoth poses a problem for small government guys like me. Bureaucracies can only be defeated by political power, but since we cannot join or support the political process without becoming what we despise, we give the enemy a free run at its objectives. In refusing to summon a Mothra to defeat their Godzilla, we allow the bureaucratic beast to wreak havoc unopposed.

That’s why UKIP is a breath of fresh air for those of us who clung to our sanity during this madness. When its members say the unsayable, the political and cultural elite shrieks with mock outrage, but a growing number of people say, “At last, someone willing to speak the truth.” When they promise to leave the EU, burn unwanted laws and cut public spending, we say, “About time.” To those of us who despair at the statist tendencies of the mainstream parties, UKIP looks like a movement we can put our faith in.

The Tories have responded by insisting UKIP has no real policies, to which I would say that this hasn’t held them back. Their ragtag combination of Keynesianism and liberal dogma doesn’t represent a coherent response to the mess we’re in. Then there’s the accusation that UKIP is merely a protest party that will dilute the conservative vote and let Labour back in. Well maybe they are a protest party, but the point of protest is to force change. If the threat of a Labour victory persuades the Tories to go back to their roots and adopt some of the ideas advanced by UKIP, that protest will have done its job. I would gladly vote for a Conservative Party that thinks like Nigel Farage.

The current political class is fighting yesterday’s battles: ones that began when we were living with the illusion of unearned wealth and unconditional security. But now the party’s over. The boom busted and all we’re left to show for it is New Labour’s mega-state and its decadent moral code. Those who continue to defend these artefacts offer no hope for the future. They are destined to repeat the same mistakes unto destruction. If UKIP offer the slightest prospect of change, they have to be worth a punt.

48 comments on “Russell Taylor – In praise of UKIP

  1. gavinmaclure
    May 1, 2013 at 5:37 pm #

    Exceptionally well written – and so true!

  2. dustybloke
    May 1, 2013 at 7:32 pm #

    Conscience is a perk of prosperity!?

    Does that work for you because of the alliteration?

    You can’t have a conscience if you’re poor?

    I grew up on a council estate in the 50s and believe me, I couldn’t comprehend the hypocrisy I encountered as I went “up” in the world.

    The noble generals of the Great War had a conscience?

    Public school educated rich barristers like Blair have a conscience?

    Lord Sugar has a conscience?

    Funnily enough, as a one-time Tory activist, I can assure you that “liberals” have no conscience whatsoever.

    Shame, as I liked a lot of things about this blog, but that asinine remark has made me think again.

  3. Mark Nutley
    May 1, 2013 at 9:33 pm #

    Spot on

  4. Phillip Downs
    May 2, 2013 at 9:34 am #

    Russell

    This is beatifully articulated and, as much as I like the Bogpaper site, your article truly deserves a much wider audience.

    • Russell
      May 2, 2013 at 3:44 pm #

      Thank you, Phillip. Very kind of you to say.

    • Blue Linny
      May 4, 2013 at 3:59 pm #

      My thoughts exactly.

  5. jazz606
    May 2, 2013 at 10:00 am #

    Let’s hope the Tories get whitewashed tomorrow.

    One is allowed to say “whitewash”…still ?

  6. David
    May 2, 2013 at 6:56 pm #

    Good article Russell, great analysis and interesting too.

  7. Simon Roberts
    May 2, 2013 at 9:57 pm #

    An excellent read and beautifully written.

  8. Barry W
    May 3, 2013 at 9:09 am #

    The chief beneficiary has been the political class?

    And middle-class privileged women.

  9. Mike Daniels
    May 3, 2013 at 1:44 pm #

    UKIP’s success in opposing the establishment all depends on how much financing they receive from the true money power behind our governments.

    Conservatives=Zionism
    Labour = Bolshevism
    Liberals = Bolshevism

    UKIP = ?

  10. Ulf E
    May 3, 2013 at 1:55 pm #

    Great post. Good luck, Britain! If you succeed in breaking out of the EU, maybe Sweden will follow.

  11. Bob K
    May 3, 2013 at 2:30 pm #

    Absolutely brilliant! For us Yanks just substitute “Tea Party” for UKIP to describe what is happening in America.

  12. rmnicJay
    May 3, 2013 at 2:46 pm #

    Canada had the Reform party which rose out of the remainders of the supposedly right Progressive Conservative party. The Reform party was accused of all the same slanders. It ended up absorbing the Progressive Conservative party and ultimately becoming the Conservative party.
    It took awhile but the left is in disarray, not in power and Canada is slowly righting itself.

  13. Alasdair
    May 3, 2013 at 2:55 pm #

    UKIP are hardly a libertarian party though, if you look at their actual policies. Or rather, *some* of their policies are libertarian, while others favour the very bureaucratic nanny-state they claim to be against.

    So far they’ve succeeded at trying to be all things to all men, but like the Lib Dems, they’ll fall apart as soon as they get near power and are forced to actually stand for something.

  14. John D.
    May 3, 2013 at 4:21 pm #

    Three cheers for UKIP- from a Yank living in the Free Republic of Texas.

  15. gman
    May 3, 2013 at 4:22 pm #

    “Once you’ve been hoodwinked into believing that prosperity and social order are facts of nature or the product of enlightened government, conservative values don’t make much sense, they just appear mean and petty.”

    oh, not just appear. they most certainly can be, as anyone old enough will recall, and as we will see again. this is not to say you are wrong about the liberals. I believe you see each other clearly.

    the desireable goal would be to find a balance between left and right. a steady-state balance seems impossible – such a thing seldom exists – but a cycle seems possible. perhaps unavoidable. conservative success generates wealth which supports liberalism which breeds failure which gives rise to conservativism.

  16. Vinny Vidivici
    May 3, 2013 at 4:44 pm #

    Well said.

  17. Patrick Carroll
    May 3, 2013 at 4:45 pm #

    “punt”?

    The dead Irish pound?

    Just wondering.

  18. GAI
    May 3, 2013 at 4:55 pm #

    I am an American and I am going to print this out and personally hand it to some of the Republicans who are in office representing me.

    Thank you.
    …….

    Middle-class privileged women may be under the illusion they have benefited but actually we (I am female) have not. Woman’s Lib was all about pushing more workers into the work force and lowering wages through competition while increasing profit for corporations (more customers) and taxes for government.

    Barry W, I suggest you read this article: http://www.opednews.com/articles/History-HACCP-and-the-Foo-by-Nicole-Johnson-090906-229.html

    It shows the decades long, carefully orchestrated demise of family farms in the USA. The plan was to drive people from self-sufficient farmers to complete dependence on government and corporations. Once you understand politics and laws are ultimately for the benefit of the wealthy, though they are disguised as being of ‘Social Benefit’ you can figure out why the laws never deliver as advertised and some how always make things worse for the little guy.

    Another example from the USA: http://www.motherjones.com/politics/1995/07/dwaynes-world

  19. Paul
    May 3, 2013 at 5:48 pm #

    You have quite brilliantly articulated the sense of despair and alienation I have felt for years, in terms that make my own political stance seem so much more coherent and rationale.

    However, it I may offer one small critique, I am surprised that you made no mention of the ultimate “piety from the ethical buffet” – ill informed “feel-good” environmentalism and the liberal elite’s obsession with the non-existent “problem” of climate change.

  20. ingvareIngvar Engelbrecht
    May 3, 2013 at 7:23 pm #

    Wish we had a Faray in Sweden!!

  21. Baron
    May 3, 2013 at 7:25 pm #

    Top notch take on things, sir. UKIP resembles the protest vote of the Tea Party. It will succeed more because it has an established structure that fits the domain of politics, and good on them, too.

  22. David
    May 3, 2013 at 11:41 pm #

    Superbly articulated article. As already said, deserves a much wider audience.

  23. Flora
    May 4, 2013 at 12:12 am #

    A wonderful analysis!! We need a UKIP in Australia to put a firecracker under our main political parties. I think I’ll forward this link to the conservative Leader of the Opposition, Tony Abbott, so he can incorporate its fire into his own belly in preparation for our September General Election!

  24. brettmcs
    May 4, 2013 at 12:17 am #

    It’s not quite Mothra vs Godzilla. UKIP is more like a wasp buzzing around Godzilla’s head, making him swat ineffectually with those stubby little arms, distracting him from his real enemy which is the voluntary-based Civil Society, threatening to replace his coercion-based State.

  25. Tom,R,Worc,MA,USA
    May 4, 2013 at 2:56 am #

    This piece was read on the air, in it’s entirety, by a talk back radio host where I live.

    Brilliant.

  26. timothy cassel
    May 4, 2013 at 8:56 am #

    I have always suspected a conspiracy between Labour and Conservatives to conjure up a mindset where people will vote for one of the two parties solely to prevent the other getting in. In other words negative voting to keep out other parties (I do not count the Libdems who appear increasingly irrelevant). Surprisingly as they become more and more alike, this conspiracy seems to become stronger. Conservative friends tell me ‘If you vote UKIP you will let Labour in’. We have to resist this.

  27. Tim
    May 4, 2013 at 12:35 pm #

    Absolutely brilliant piece. One of the best regarding the rise of UKIP that i’ve read.

  28. Unconvincing Pseudonym
    May 4, 2013 at 1:31 pm #

    It’s a bit effing rich for the LibLabCon to describe Ukip as having no policies. The only policy that the LibLabCon has is to do what Brussels tells it.

    • David
      May 4, 2013 at 1:54 pm #

      “What they have failed to grasp is that conscience is a perk of prosperity”

      I dont understand. Is this saying that people that are not prosperous dont have a conscience, and that these are the people that UKIP can speak to?

  29. Rod E.
    May 4, 2013 at 3:17 pm #

    You wrote: “Facing down the state behemoth poses a problem for small government guys like me. Bureaucracies can only be defeated by political power, but since we cannot join or support the political process without becoming what we despise, we give the enemy a free run at its objectives.”

    A great point. Some of the best people to run government sensibly are trained businesspeople who’ve actually run profitable businesses, managed employees, set goals that have actually been achieved, etc. But those same people tend to avoid seeking government offices.

    In 1980, when Reagan was elected President, he appointed several such people to his cabinet and to other high offices, but many chose within a couple of years to return to their real passion, working in the private sector to build upon their dreams. This is why Conservative leadership is so crucial. So much depends upon just one man or woman unwilling to bend, as Thatcher and Reagan both consistently demonstrated.

    Conversely, a weak liberal leader, such as Obama today, will have no shortage of underlings already in place and willing to maintain the long-term effort of subjugating us all to both their regulatory morass and their moral swamp. And virtually none of those underlings have the remotest desire to join the private sector, unless it’s to cash in on policies they created while in power.

  30. Julieann Carter (@MisGrace)
    May 4, 2013 at 3:19 pm #

    I can only echo others here, an excellent article

  31. Phillip Bratby
    May 4, 2013 at 7:19 pm #

    LibLabCon energy policy is to close real power stations, build useless wind turbines and wait for the lights to go out. Some policy that is, and driven by the DECC green bureaucracy.

  32. Robin
    May 4, 2013 at 8:26 pm #

    Yes but NHS Mustnt be Privatised,UKIP cutting A&E units across London & Closing Fire Stations Like Bonkers Boris would be Electoral suicide

  33. PSRose
    May 4, 2013 at 8:29 pm #

    Excellent analysis – LibLabCON have nothing – and accuse UKIP of what they themselves suffer from…

  34. macdundas
    May 5, 2013 at 9:21 am #

    Came to this site via a link at Flying Tiger Comics – another recent find! FMD you’re good; don’t know what your audience reach is, but it deserves to be wider.
    Keep up the good work.
    Malcolm

  35. philbo62
    May 5, 2013 at 6:35 pm #

    Brilliant article Russell, succinct and beautifully written

  36. murenaman
    May 5, 2013 at 9:58 pm #

    Osborne is a follower of Keynes? Maybe you should let him know that.

    The most striking thing about UKIP isn’t their difference from the Tories, Labour and Liberals, it’s just how much they’re the same. Following the identical failed capitalist model that brought about the 2008 crash. But with added stupidity like a flat rate of tax and wasting even more money on the military.

    Regression is not the answer.

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