Posted by: secretperson | November 4, 2008

UKIP Reject BNP Deal

UKIP have rejected an offer of an anti-EU electoral pact for next year’s EU elections from the BNP. Nigel Farage, the UKIP leader, was quite firm in saying they have nothing in common with the BNP.

Well said UKIP, the BNP’s offer was an attempt to undermine civic nationalism, in the same way they have in the past with English civic nationalism. They are saying work together against the EU, or for an English parliament, while glossing over the fact that their conception of life outside the EU or the make up of the English parliament are very different from ours.

They claimed that anti-EU parties undermining each other harmed the fight against the EU. In reality they simply want to be the only alternative to the centrist consensus of the big three parties. How often is it heard: ‘people vote BNP as the mainstream parties have let them down’? Hence their attempts to align their ethnic nationalist message with non-racist EUscepticism, English nationalism and even environmentalism.

The BNP are helped by the anti-BNP scaremongering of the big parties. The constant repitition of phrases like ‘pandering to the BNP’, ‘speaking the language of the BNP’ etc promote the idea of the BNP as the ultimate establishment bogeyman, a role they no doubt cherish. How better to vote in protest at the lack of difference in the main parties than the one party they seem to fear most of all – the BNP?

Well I can think of plenty of better ways. Obviously the electoral system doesn’t work in the favour of small parties. But if you are an EUsceptic, you are best voting UKIP, as that is the main aim of their policy. A large vote for UKIP and corresponding large number of seats will send a message to the government (and perhaps more importantly future Tory governments) that a large number of people don’t like the way the EU is organised and run. A large BNP vote will send the message that EUscepticism is driven by racism and can therefore be ignored.

For me, even ignoring the obviously distasteful racism, the BNP are also a left-wing protectionist, nationalising authoritarian party. Nigel Farage observes this too, as he tries to position UKIP as a libertarian party with a full policy set, rather than a single issue group. So a vote for the BNP would be endorsing almost the opposite of my views.

There is a genuine case to be made against the EU, on grounds of democracy, accountability, big statism and value for money. Having more EUsceptic MEPs, of the BNP stripe, will undermine these arguments and give ammunition to those EUphiles who peddle the lie that anyone who objects to the EU, or even the form of the EU, is a xenophobe.

A vote for the BNP would be counter productive in the fight against the EU.

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