The Farage “juggernaut”

Nigel Farage has joined the ‘BBC bias’ club. Now we know he’s not worth listening to

Maybe not so much. Maybe it’s all a bit of an exaggeration. The Independent’s article dissects Farage’s shock and horror at the Beeb having the absolute temerity, the unmitigated gall, the sheer cheek of having a BBC host treat him like any other politician and ask questions about his opinions on topics other than Brexit.

… Nigel Farage doesn’t want to be asked any questions about, say the NHS, and his previously expressed his wish to replace it with an insurance system, even though he will stand 650 candidates at the next election, and as such wants to run the NHS. He will scream outrage if you bring up his having heaped praise on Vladimir Putin, even though he wants to control the country’s foreign policy. 

All Nigel Farage wants you to ask him about is the insurgency of his own brand new party, which he calls the “biggest change in British politics in decades”, even though his own, single-issue, pro-Brexit party is about to do almost exactly as well in the EU parliamentary elections as it did in the last one. And actually, when it comes to the popularity of Nigel Farage, and the size of his electoral constituency, which tops out at 35 per cent in EU elections, and significantly less than that in Westminster ones, nothing in the slightest has changed.

In short, Nigel Farage is a charlatan.

There’s poling data to prove it. His Brexit party is doing well for two reasons. First, the previous UKIP support – Farage’s original anti-EU vehicle – has collapsed in the wake of its lurch towards fascism under Gerard Batten and the neo-Nazi Tommy Robinson. UKIP supporters left along with Farage once he lost his grip on it.

Second, the Tory vote has also collapsed, and though no doubt some have gone to the Lib-Dems and other minor parties, a lot has gone gone to to the the Brexit party.

Third, UKIP already had a third of the UK 73 member delegation to the EU parliament, 24 seats in 2014, though this has also shifted to the Brexit party as UKIP MEPs moved to Brexit or Independents.


At 2014 election

At dissolution
Conservative1918 -1
Labour2018 -2
Brexit PartyN/A14 +14
Independent06 +6
UKIP243 -21
Liberal Democrat11
Sinn Féin11
Plaid Cymru11
SDP01 +1
Change UKN/A1 +1
Vacant seats02 +2

The EU poll tracker tells the same tale:

Brexit under Farage is doing no better, if no worse, than UKIP under Farage. As les Français would say, plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose. (Nigel, close your ears, it’s furrin jabber.)

The-UKIP Brexit party is still in the lead in the EU election, just as it was in 2014. It’s the hard core 30-35% of Britons who are anti-immigrant, anti-Europe, anti-foreign, and those just plain frustrated with the impoverishment caused by Tory austerity politics. Tories and Labour deserve their fate, it’s just a pity the pro-EU factions can’t get it together. But they never could, and it’s highly likely they never will – the EU is just one of their issues, unlike the single-issue Brexit clown car.

The state of the polls and British politics in general merely confirms the depressing conclusion that no other issue in the UK is going to get sorted till Brexit gets sorted, once and for all. The NHS crisis, the economy, jobs, poverty, climate change, you name your issue and you will find it at best on a back burner if not put back in deep freeze. British politics needs an earthquake under it to get things moving again, but I doubt the EU elections will suffice. How the UK parliament will react is the key. Neither Tories nor Labour will relish a general election right now, though it’s unlikely the Brexit protest vote would be replicated in one, but they are going to need to move before Oct 31, the no-deal exit date, and absent any leadership in either major party, MPs may have to do it themselves.

Brexit poll surge

Poll surge for Farage sparks panic among Tories and Labour

The Opinium survey for the Observerplaces the Brexit party on 34%, when people were asked how they intended to vote on 23 May, with Labour slipping to 21% and the Conservatives collapsing to just 11%. Ominously for Theresa May, support for the Tories at the European elections is now less than a third of that for Farage’s party, and below that for the Liberal Democrats, who are on 12%.

The poll suggests the Brexit party, launched only last month, is now on course for a thumping victory that Farage will, MPs fear, use to back his argument that the UK must leave the EU immediately without a deal.

It’s not in the least surprising that disgruntled Tory yahoos are leaving that dire party in droves to vote for Farage’s single-issue Brexit party. Unfortunately, for these EU elections, there is only one issue in the UK to discuss, Brexit itself. Never mind the fact that the earth is dying under human feet, realistically, thaks in large part to May and a lesser degree to Corbyn, it’s the only issue that matters.

The problem is that Farage is a far right loon. You know it not only by what he says, but who he says it with. Notably, he quit UKIP when they signed on with Stephen Yaxley-Lennon, known as Tommy Robinson, as an adviser. Robinson is a notorious racist and fascist, and Farage noticed the writing on the wall, as he wants to avoid those labels.

But he hobnobs with other far right activists and political leaders across the world. For example, he has appeared several times over the last handful of years with the American conspiracy nutcase Alex Jones, who runs a vituperative vblog called Infowars. Perhaps most famous for his incredible allegation that the Sandy Hook school massacre in the US was a false flag operation, he has espoused every far right claim and conspiracy theory, and Farage never challenged him on any of them, at any time, throwing in in some more of his own. Farage claimed that the EU is “the prototype for the new world order”, and that “globalists have wanted some form of conflict with Russia as an argument for us all to surrender our national sovereignty… to a higher global level.”

Farage likes him some Vladimir Putin as well, who is hardly a supporter of any kind of democracy, and hobnobs with the likes of Steve Bannon, a fascist who served in Trump’s administration for the first few months. So despite an apparent reluctance to associate with Tommy Robinson, the British answer to Steve Bannon, it’s just a smokescreen for Farage’s real preference, a throwback to Mosley’s 1930s fascism which he reportedly waxed lyrical about as a younger man. By their associates shall you know them. It’s not enough to listen to what Farage says now, as that is filtered through his political ambitions as to what his intended audience will wear. You have to look at the whole, creepy-crawly deal.

It is alarming that a third of the British electorate is willing to swallow what Farage represents, an outburst of hatred and fear of immigrants as well as wild conspiracy theories, and forget why the EU was created in the first place – to stop outbursts of hatred and fear from turning into pogroms and wars.

It’s fair enough for EU critics to point out that the poor in Britain haven’t prospered under the EU, but even fairer to point out that the reason is because of Tory domestic austerity policies, brought about while Britain was spending freely on arms and tax cuts for the wealthy, and prolonging policies that are still destroying Britain’s industrial capacity, and therefore ability to employ people and generate wealth for all, rather than the lucky Tory few.

Tories have no-one but themselves to blame for driving their voters to Farage. A pox on May and her minions.

Stupid premier…

From the Guardian live feed:

May says [English local] election results show voters want both main parties to ‘deliver Brexit’

In her speech, Theresa May described the results of the local elections as “very difficult”.

She paid tribute to councillors who had lost their seats, saying that they were not to blame for their defeat and that, as a former councillor herself, she knew how hard they worked.

And she said the voters were giving a “simple message” to the Conservatives and Labour: “Just get on and deliver Brexit.”

The twit says this, as her party’s vote crumbles… mainly to the Remain Lib Dems. Well, one expects politicians to spin dizzyingly, and May is so stubborn and self-involved, she may even believe her own propaganda by now, who knows?

Corbyn has lost as well, and deservedly so. He’s waffled bafflingly, trying to keep his own split party together. Could it be the English are finally waking up to the fact they’ve been right royally reamed by both parties? The real test, obviously will be on May 23, with nationwide EU elections.*

Voters are right well fed up with the Brexit fiasco that May has created, and I don’t blame Corbyn for not wanting to let her off the hook. BUt it doesn’t mean – and this is supported by polls – that they are angry Brexit hasn’t happened. They now know what they didn’t know in the 2016 referendum, that Brexit is going to be a disaster, and it’s not worth the effort to poke the EU apparatchiks in the eye.

A Britain outside the EU is going to be weaker and more isolated than inside. May may court the odious Trump with royal pageantry during the state visit, assuming he’s not been impeached by then, but it won’t get her anywhere, because his word is worth even less than hers.

*provided May and Corbyn haven’t reached an 11:59th hour agreement to Brexit peacefully together. ROTFLMAO!

Brexit re-postponed

Brexit: May insists UK can still exit EU by end of next month

Ironically, it’s been postponed to Halloween, or maybe Hell Freezes Over, hard to tell. It’s given the twitterati Fits o’Hilarity, apparently. And May continues her zombie-like circuar lurch insisting for the umpteenth time that her “deal” be approved by a parliament that doesn’t appear capable of coherent thought, let alone an agreement on any policy of any kind.

The next deadline is May 22, the day before the EU elections. After the last two yearsworth of Tory pantomime, I can’t see the House agreeing on anything by then, either, though it’s impossible to divine anything from casting the rune stones on this one. Today’s editorial wisdom is tomorrow’s cat litter and worth less.

The solution obvious to anyone with working front lobes is either an election to shake these half-baked twits out of office, or a referendum to let the people do their jobs for them, but this Tory misgovernment and this parliament is perfectly capable of sitting on their collective buttocks for another few months, being against everything and for nothing.

When May says the front benches should “work together”, she’s lying as much as President Trump does. She insists Labour accept her agreement. Even Jeremy Corbyn isn’t that daft. She’s so stubborn and dense it’s embarrassing, but I suppose she learned the lesson from Maggie that sheer, stupid intransigence can overcome… whatever. It’s a pity the only two female prime ministers in British history have been unmitigated disasters. Of course, the riposte might be, every male prime minister has been a disaster as well. Even Churchill. It would be facile to put all the blame on May. She’s

Unfortunately, sheer, stupid intransigence never accomplished the utterly impossible, which is a complete separation from the EU with no Irish border, and Ulster still in the UK. The only way anything like this could be done is a union of the two Irelands, taking Ulster out of the UK. That would go down well with the DUP May depends on. And it would be a good solution for the whole of Ireland. But May is terrified of going down in history – and she will go far down indeed – as the prime minister who lit the powder keg under the entire Union. It’s not just Northern Ireland, she stands to lose Scotland as well. Pulling the UK out of the EU might very well unravel the fabric holding the UK together, since the vast majority of the Tory fascists are in the southeast of England.

Still, at this point, anything anyone promises or speculates about Brexit is so much gas.

Given the dates, my own view is we to resurrect Guy Fawkes, and make sure he gets it right this time.

Neo-Nazi Rees-Mogg

This jackal is desperate to sabotage the EU.

Andrea Leadsom: no-deal Brexit next week would not be so grim

The Conservative backbench Brexiter Jacob Rees-Mogg on Sunday reiterated his proposal for the UK to seek to veto EU budgets and other disruptions if it stayed.

“I don’t think the EU, in its jargon, has behaved towards us with sincere cooperation,” he told Sky News’s Sophy Ridge on Sunday. “We are no longer obliged to follow sincere cooperation in return.”

He said: “When the multi-annual financial framework comes forward, if we are still in, this is our one-in-seven-year opportunity to veto the budget and to be really very difficult, and I hope that any British prime minister would take that opportunity.”

Treason? It’s the Brexiteers who haven’t behaved with sincere cooperation. They clearly want to disrupt Europe and send it back to the good old days of 70 years ago, when it was at war.

Whither Brexit?

Who knows?

Brexit delay: Tory minister says taking part in EU elections would be ‘suicide note’ for party

He told BBC Radio 4’s Today: “If we can’t get Labour to agree I think it’s important that parliament acts quickly now to decide what it is in favour of – whether it is through some voting mechanism where we have a single transferable vote and we vote on all the different deals.

“We need to do that quickly because I think going into the EU elections for the Conservative Party, or indeed for the Labour Party, and telling our constituents why we haven’t been able to deliver Brexit I think would be an existential threat.

“I would go further and say it would be the suicide note of the Conservative Party.”

The entire British political system has written its suicide note. It started with the choice to have a referendum on EU membership at a time when voters were already disgruntled with the establishment. And it’s gone downhill from there.

The man has a point. No telling what the hustings would produce right now, and it is all thanks to his party screwing up. I’ve read that May is now driven by the threat of the UK breaking up as her political legacy. She should take it seriously. The Scots Nats are dancing in the streets and a united Ireland is on the cards. I’m happy with both those outcomes, as a means to deliver us from Tory occupancy.

That’s one reason Tory MPs don’t want a general election. They are justifiably afraid of losing their jobs.

Is Rees-Mogg a would-be Nazi?

The question may seem on the surface absurd, till you look at the people he supports.

Tory racism storm deepens as Jacob Rees-Mogg promotes video of German far-right leader

Conservative MP Jacob Rees-Mogg has caused consternation after approvingly quoting the leader of a German far-right party whose senior figures have called for refugees to be shot.

The influential Tory Brexiteer posted a video of Alice Weidel, leader of the AfD, commenting on Brexit to his social media profile. 

The AfD, whose candidates have declared that Islam is worse than the plague and that refugee boats should be sunk, marched alongside neo-Nazis last year, leading to some of its members being put under formal state surveillance.

“You can tell a lot about the person by the company they keep”, one social media user commented under Mr Rees-Mogg’s tweet, while another added “Are you quoting the same AfD that had posters urging an ‘Islam-free’ Bavaria at a recent election?”  

The whirring sound you hear is Winston spinning in his grave.

Everywhere you look, racism and proto-fascism is leaking out of the pores of the Tory Grand Wizards.

May’s legacy?

Theresa May’s appalling legacy will be the total destruction of the Good Friday Agreement

While I agree with much of what this article says about May –
as prime minister she has shown that she has a lethal blend of tunnel vision and obstinacy that automatically produces ill-judged decisions – it may be a little early to start talking about legacies.

For starters, it was not May who started this, and she supported and voted Remain. Cameron started this pot boiling with the cooperation of the Tory party in order to keep keep UKIP from undermining the Tory majority – which says a lot about the sort of people who support the Tories. If the Good Friday Accords get shredded or nullified, as they must do in any Brexit worthy of the name, then it’s the legacy of the Tory party and its thrust for power. At least May was aware of the importance of that agreement in her attempt to put in a backstop to keep the border open. In fact, it could ultimately lead to Irish unification, which is one solution to the brexit conundrum.

May is undoubtedly responsible for how she conducted herself as prime minister. On top of a narrow Leave victory in 2016, she made a massive error of judgement in calling an election in 2017, thinking this would ratify the referendum. She lost. Even after that, it didn’t dawn on her that she wasn’t a dictator able to accomplish brexit by fiat. She refused to consult anyone but the Tory right; she ignored nearly half the country that chose to Remain; she refused any compromise with the opposition; and she treated negotiations as if the UK had the upper hand.

She was a fool, but let’s wait to see the scale of her disaster before assigning a legacy.

We should beware reaction on the right

Brexit protests: Two arrested as ‘yellow vest’ activists block Westminster Bridge

As the prospects of either a general election – unlikely as Tories fear decimation – or referendum loom closer if May cannot wangle enough support for a 4th brexit effort and if the House won’t sanction a no-deal brexit, delay seems all but inevitable at this point. This means the EU Parliament elections in May would have to go ahead. The EU has indicated it would approve delays under either set of circumstances.

If this pans out, look out for trouble, for the yellow-jackets* are coming.

Now these yellow jackets are not working class folk alarmed for their jobs. They are English nationalists or their dupes who have understandable resentments about adverse economic and social conditions in the UK – conditions, I might add, that have be exacerbated by the tone-deafness of the Tory regime. As a result, they look for someone or something to blame, and are taken advantage of by English nationalist demagogues like Tommy Robinson, and Nigel Farage. They are encouraged to blame the EU and the free movement of Europeans throughout the EU. They may be goaded by nationalists who are taking advantage of economic distress, but let’s not turn a blind eye to what is causing that distress – Tory austerity.

Not to exaggerate, but this is reminiscent of the later years of the Weimar Republic in Germany leading up to events from 1933 to 1939, where another demagogue unleashed a holocaust across Europe. We’re nowhere near that tipping point yet, but we should be careful not to repeat history. The entire point of the EU, from its humbler yet historic post-war beginnings as the European Coal and Steel Community that evolved into the Common Market, is to keep the European peace, and to a large extent, the experiment has succeeded.

The nationalistic yahoos would like to reverse it. The article above refers to harassment of journalists from Channel 4 and CNN at that demonstration. Now why would yellow jackets be harassing journalists? Surely, one asks, they would like the publicity? Ah, but Channel 4 and CNN are on the “wrong” side of politics. CNN is a known critic of would-be Dictator Donald Trump, who is friendly towards white supremacists and far right nationalists in the US. Channel 4’s reporter Jon Snow had commented on observing the protests on Friday that he had “never seen so many white people in one place”  – an oblique way of pointing out the inherent racism of this movement.

Let’s make no mistakes. The far right forces behind the yellow jacket demonstrations are no friends to to a peaceful, democratic and integrated society. They want to foment racism, discord and strife. They want to widen rifts and disagreements. And they want to split up Europe into nationalistic camps. Again. I have no insight into their motivations, which could be diverse, from simmering rage and resentment to a desire to wield power and authority. (And they won’t stop even if brexit is prevented. EU spokespeople have remarked that they have seen commentary in the British rightwing press about trying to break up Europe from within.)

It would be a tragic mistake to ignore the austerity-driven economic grievances that they are exploiting. Whatever course Britain takes over the next two or more weeks, those grievances need to be addressed and means of resolving them need to be outlined, here and in Europe. We need to deprive this far right nationalism of any political oxygen. Let them choke.

*yellow “jacket” – I prefer this noun over “vest” because, although it is supposed to reflect solidarity with the gillets jaunes in la belle France, it is also a cognate of the yellowjacket wasp of North America, which is a vicious and feared stinging insect pest. This is also indicative of the transaltantic political connections and alliances of the racist far right, for in the US, Trump, a nationalist and white supremacist sympathiser or fellow traveller, holds Nuremberg-style rallies across the US on a weekly basis. The far right is a looming pestilence. We live in interesting times after 74 years of European and transatlantic peace.