It is ironic that the most popular politician in the UK, Nigel Farrage of the United Kingdom Independence Party (Ukip), is also the most despised by the elite. And because the elite is now well and truly embedded in the party of what used to be the working man, Farage is excoriated by both Tory and Labour Parties.
Although the Ukip Party scored massively in the European Election last year and swept the board, it did badly in the General Election this year even though it polled over 4 million votes, enough to have got a few score MPs into the House of Commons if he’d had proportional representation instead of our first-past-the-post system. If we’d had the Alternative Voting system (in which second preference votes can be also be added if necessary) then Ukip might even have become the largest party.
The recent monthly Economist Ipsos Mori poll — and rhe reason why Nigel Farage was invited to write an opinion piece in the Daily Telegraph this morning — places immigration at the top of the list of public concern — for the first time ever time ever recorded — above the National Heath Service and the economy. The reason is that although the present government have stopped the millions of immigrants from Bagladeshi and Africa being allowed in by the former Labour administration, the annual ingress has been replaced by European economic migrants (300,000 a year at present).
The big problem for Farage, however — and the reason why Ukip will probably never get a larger vote than 4 million people (about 14% of those who voted) — is that he is sending a confused message. He cannot make up his mind whether Ukip is an anti-mass immigration or an anti-European Union Party. Because we’ve had something like 30 or 40 years of very subtle, almost sub voce, propaganda from the Brussels Commissioners then something like 60-70% of the UK population are as still in favour of the UK’s membership of the EU as they were (slightly) in the last referrendum in 1973. Thus on a joint ticket the electorate is ambiguouos when considering Ukip.
What Farage should have done is to pitch Ukip — and called it a different name while he was at it — against mass immigration only with the EU policy taking a background seat along with other sub-policies. That way he would have dug into many Tory voters and scored more than 4 million — probably at least 6 or 7 votes, which would have given him quite a few dozen seats even in our present system. The bonus woud have been that because out-of-work Europeans are now pouring into the UK (albeit to mainly low pay jobs) then this would have caused many more Tory MPs of the present administration to become anti-EU. It would certainly nhave been enoug to — becuase of the usual peer pressure effect — to have caused the present government to turn against membership of the EU.
A subsidiary — but important reason — why the name should have been changed also (to the English Nationalist Party?) is that we donlt have a United Kingdom any longer. We have a Scotland which is on tnhe verge of breaking away from England. We have a Wales Assemby which, while not independent yet takes pains to adopt policies which are different fromengland whenever possible. We have a Northern Ireland which is still pretty much ungovernable and which, as far as most of the population os the UK is covnerned, could be towed away into the middle of the Atlantic and sunk for all they care. And finally, we have an England which is becoming increasingly divided between London and the rest, and there is already a call for an English Parliament separate from the House of Commons.
So now we come to America. It, too, is not a united country. It, too, will want to start dividing in due course, mainly becuiase it, too, is subejct to the London-like growth of supr-cities and the increasing gao between about a prosperous over-class — probably about the same percentage, 15%, as ours — and the rest. But much more to the point at present is that it suffers from major immigration.
And, further to the same point, Donald Trump is preaching against mass immigration and, so we are invormed over here, despite making horrendous anti-feminie gaffes last week his popularity is rising fast in America. And, the Republican Party being what it is, if Trump continued to do well in the opinion polls (and running against a woman Democrat cadidate would only enhance him) and is chosen as the GOP candidate then he could be President next time. The Amerrican Founding Fathers, with their electoral college system, tried to guard again anybody like Trump ever becoming President, but it might fail this time. Well, what would my America readers think about that, I wonder?
The basic mistake America is making is exactly the same mistake that all advanced countries with more than, let us say, a population of 20 million, is making. This is that advanced nation-states that are too large are already dividing into parts. The modern specialised global economy places a premium on high education and high (increasingly scientific) expertise. The nation-state, a product of the artillery regiment of the last three centuries has reached its sell-by date when the domestic problemes of governments become too big for them to handle. All institutions have a lifetime. Ours — the UK, Germany, America, what have you — China in due courtse also — will have to evolve new forms of governance.
Perhaps if Donald Trump concentrated hard on immigration and is ultimately elected as the next President then he’ll provoke America into into smaller more efficient entities — perhaps quicker than we are struggling to become over this sidde of the pond.