Looking down at a mince pie covered in lovely cream, I am reminded by my wife looking at my waist that sometimes in terms of desirability less is more! UKIP has always promised to be a party that makes big changes to the way the UK is governed and represented. While we have the stomach for it, I would like us to consider another side to UKIP that other parties have ignored – stability.
The most obvious change that UKIP will bring about is a controlled and planned exit from the EU and whilst we have many other policies, the EU has become responsible for so many facets of UK life that it has to be a central theme for any political party that wants to make a difference. There can be no change in the UK without considering its compatibility with the EU and the bureaucrats: the EU is continually justifying their existence with a myriad of jumbled priorities and regulations. This means that one of the biggest and certainly the most obvious sign of change with a UKIP government would actually be the presence of stability. We cannot predict what the EU will do, or what influence they will seek to have next and the only way to provide stability for families and businesses is to have independence.
Whilst the other parties try to present a vote for UKIP as a shot in the dark or a roll of the dice, we have the opportunity to show that in reality UKIP is the party that can deliver only as much change as is needed or wanted, rather than an act of faith in the EU. I have spoken to potential UKIP voters who are put off voting for independence because they have been convinced that UKIP would be a leap into the unknown. There are blue supporters who are scared of red… or the red’s who will never vote blue. It’s frustrating because if the only reason to vote for the established parties is the fear of the unknown and the established parties are committed to the EU then people are voting for familiarity but are actually giving the EU legitimacy to change the character and laws of the UK in ways which may not be easily remedied.
So, what can UKIP do? I would like to suggest we are bold, not just in what we promise we would like to change, but in what we are prepared to leave alone for the sake of stability whilst a considered rather than ideological assessment is made of the country following independence.
I worked as a Police Officer for a couple of years and I saw targets changed so frequently that only the newest recruits and the most ambitious supervising officers were aware of the latest change. As a school governor I saw the care and curriculum requirements change so often that the changes became the focus rather than the teaching. I am sure there are numerous examples of other professions where constant interference has infuriated the employees and those affected by its delivery just as much.
UKIP needs to make some urgent changes to the UK: controlled exit from the EU, control of the borders of the UK, fair application of the laws of the UK, and a consideration of the interests of the UK first and foremost. However, we don’t have to make change for changes sake and if we can show that UKIP has the maturity to be trusted with this responsibility then it will become a virtuous circle where more people will trust UKIP with their vote.
I would like UKIP to commit to a package of changes that will be made and a promise of areas that will be left untouched for a defined period of time following the general election. It fits with the common sense approach of the party, because if we could grant teachers, policemen, nurses and countless others the chance to do their job without trying to reinvent their part of the wheel, we could genuinely make the UK better.
Sometimes less really is more, the UK needs a chance to recover from the constant barrage of demands that successive governments have placed on normal workers, often at the behest of the EU. I hope I’m not alone in wanting a significant change in the politics of the country, but one of the changes I want the most is the prospect of an independent UK that will say no to pointless change.