Today’s letters are about Bolton, UKIP, and Free Speech. The first letter is from our contributor Roger Turner:
Unfortunately I missed the first 10 minutes or so of the Any Questions BBC 4 Radio programme.
A pity really, because I missed the introduction of our leader Henry Bolton, who I am sure must have endured a terrible ribbing and expressions of disgust about his marital peregrinations and his dodgy CV, complete with two bogus “Degrees” during his introduction to the audience.
I came in as he was answering a question about maintaining the free border, between North and South Ireland. Henry pointed out that it is the EU officials who are the only ones who seem to insist on a hard border, presumably he was saying it was up to them to solve the problem.
Next up was a question on the NHS funding which he again answered adequately, but not in any way controversially. How he got through one of the final questions about how leaders should handle the wars amongst the members of their own parties except the LimpDems I don’t know, but he didn’t seem to have much of an answer that will help UKIP..
What worried me however, was really Henry`s lack of political skill, yes he can answer clearly and he even got some polite applause from the audience, but a real politician finds opportunities to talk about substance, not just endless platitudes.
There was one conversation about pardoning the Suffragettes and one of the other panel members mentioned their value in advancing the cause of women and how they are treated “in other countries” as well as this. Here was an opportunity for Henry to have drawn attention to the treatment of Muslim women as 2nd class citizens, within their own community in this country.
And of course the largest elephant in the room didn’t get a mention at all. The panel discussed the problems 95% of authorities were sustaining in just even funding statutory services and requirements. But nobody was prepared to mention the reason for shortage of funds apart from the fact that we are all living longer.
The elephant? Have you spotted it?
Immigration! Why does nobody point out, including Henry, that the referendum campaign was fought primarily on Sovereignty, meaning control of our Borders and the ability to make our own laws. Immigration, not for islamophobic or xenophobic reasons, but because the country was full up that the effectiveness of services like the NHS, Local Social Service, Schools and Housing were stretched in some cases to breaking point, by sheer pressure of numbers. Nobody drew attention to the fact that we had been drawing in immigrants from both the EU and the wider world each year since Mr. Blair got his sticky hands on the affairs of state, in biblical proportions – town size in fact; and what’s worse even if they have been contributing to the economy, very little allocation of funds have been made in this respect to their positional needs.
Surely, a decent politician filling UKIP boots should have brought out these points and made a real meal of the shysters who are deliberately evading the real issue which is troubling the grass roots of this nation and why he (HB) and UKIP exist to fight for their cause against parliamentary politicians who are deliberately ignoring the needs of their electors.
You had a golden opportunity to “make the case” Henry and you failed abysmally!
He doesn’t think like a politician, he doesn’t sound like a politician – he isn’t a politician and UKIP must be rid of him.
Respectfully, Roger Turner.
The next letter is on Free Speech and is a good illustration for the mindset that led to the correspondence on the Brokenshire item (see here). it is by our contributor Torquil Dick-Erikson:
Another absurdity by Bingley, on the official skip website!
Bingley may have changed his party label from Labour to UKIP, but his Labour – indeed Blairite – instincts for police-State-style control over free speech are still active.
However stupid this protester’s placard may have been (it said ‘No Country for Old WHITE MEN’ ), to demand that she be prosecuted for waving it is surely way over the top and utterly absurd that a UKIP Home Affairs spokesman should demand it.
After all, nobody has demanded that Mr Bolton’s girl friend should be prosecuted for having written that Meghan Markle will “taint the royal family with her negro blood”…
UKIP believes in freedom of speech! Bingley must surely go!
Respectfully, Torquil Dick-Erikson.
Finally, a press release from Gareth Bennett AM who is the Welsh representative on the NEC. This is also about Free Speech. Watch the video – the hecklers are Labour AMs, nicely underlining the point made by Torquil Dick-Erikson above:
UKIP Assembly Member for South Wales Central, Gareth Bennett, has hit out at plans to expand the number of Members in the National Assembly for Wales.
On Wednesday (Feb 6th), the Assembly Commission announced plans to consult members of the Welsh public on proposals to increase the number of Members from the current 60, to 80 or possibly even 90, at an eye watering cost of £12 Million for the first year alone, according to a report “A Parliament that Works for Wales”.
Speaking after a hard hitting UKIP Opposition Day debate, Gareth said ”UKIP is the only Party in Wales committed to challenging the cosy Cardiff Bay establishment. We will fight these changes and demand that any proposed expansion can only go ahead after the Welsh people have had a say by way of a referendum.”
A consultation is due to open next week and UKIP Wales is calling on supporters to rally against the Cardiff Bay bubble. Gareth said “The last thing Wales needs is yet more politicians. Our schools and hospitals are failing and the money could be better spent on improving services for ordinary Welsh people, not on an already bloated Assembly Establishment.”
Here’s the video: