This interview with Andrew Neil indicated where his and UKIP's weaknesses will lie as their poll rating improves. It illustrated what Richard North wrote in his blog this weekend. Click on link to read Richard's words reproduced by Junius who gives the link to Richard's full blog if you wish to check its veracity.
Richard makes the point that Farage's statement, " “But if the Conservative and Labour leaderships decide they will ignore Ukip’s messages, then goodness knows what we can do” , shows that UKIP is, what it always has been, a pressure group. Farage does not address his remarks to the people of the UK. He addresses them to the political elite not to the voting public who are the people who elect MPs and governments. As Richard, who knows Farage better than most says, after he gets rejected by LibLabCon leadership he simply does not know what to do other than running around contesting and getting soundly defeated in by-elections up and down the country.
Farage made a few sound bites but then fell back on bluster when probed further by Neil. Farage was clearly all at sea on the question of where he would get the £50bn from that the abolition of national insurance would cost. From growth he repeated ad naseum like every political party hack. He simply had not thought through his position and it showed.
Next was the vexed question of Farage's claim he would post his expense claims quarterly on the UKIP web site except that Neil had checked and there was nothing there for this year. Farage then back tracked to 6 monthly postings but as Neil pointed out even that was not there. Neither was Mr Nuttall's expenses and Mr Farage's only dealt in round numbers whereas everyone knows actual expenses come in pounds and pence or in Farage and Nuttall's case euros and cents.
This all arose I believe because Farage had been putting the boot into McShane the latest casualty of MP expense claims. This was a silly thing to as I recollect McShane had frequently been a guest on Neil's various TV politics shows. McShane can also dish it out as Farage might well discover.
Farage demolished the 48% of our exports go to the EU myth and also that if we left trade barriers would be instantly erected against us crippling our industry. Complete bollocks as A Neil well knows. He also did a decent job demolishing the 77 % of UK business want to stay in the EU BBC 'poll'. As Farage rightly pointed out the BBC only ever polled the bigg multi-nationals who would say that anyway. He missed two additional good points. These were the same businesses that wanted us to join the Euro and these were the businesses that had no loyalty to this country and would be happy to relocate to any other country that offered them a better deal. Read Colin Crouch's little book, 'Post Democracy' Mr F.
UKIP, Farage and Nuttall can expect a lot more of this in the future. Factual justification of his sound bites is not Farage's strong suit. I am looking forward to Neil quizzing Bloom, Clarke and Agnew. That will be a real blood bath.
UKIP's basic weakness is it is not a political party. At best it is a pressure group and at worst a Farage cult.
Monday morning PS
I hear NF is to be on HIGNFY this Friday. This is very silly. Private Eye, edited by Hislop, is bound to have a fund of damaging Farage stories. Only watych if you like blood sports!