I despair

I found the results of the Immingham ward elections while checking the local paper’s website. It’s grim reading.
For the non-looney voting public at least. There’s no way I’m going to be nice about UKIP or their voters so if you don’t like it go away now.

The results (as reported in The Grimsby Evening Telegraph):

D. Bolton (Labour) 960
A. Warwick (UKIP) 952
S. Swinburn (Cons) 787
M. Reed (Green) 112
A. Smith (TUSC) 49

This is frightening. Eight votes between the top two parties. What on earth were people thinking?

UKIP are the party that have one highly advertised policy: get the UK out of the EU. They also have a few policies they keep quiet about, to the extent that I tried finding a comprehensive manifesto on their website and failed. Nonetheless there’s information around if you dig; if you look under the ‘Issues‘ tab on their website, or on some of the political websites.

Where to start? Their website I suppose is obvious, since getting hold of a copy of their manifesto is difficult, it’s the next best option. For a party that claims it ‘doesn’t hate foreigners’ a lot of its ‘Issues’ certainly seem to be demonising them. Basically everything that’s wrong is the fault of the EU.

Less blatant is their veiled reference to Sharia law.

• The law of the land must apply to us all. We oppose any other system of law.

Er, I might be wrong but the law does apply to everyone already. What other systems of law? It’s fairly obvious to anyone with half a brain cell that they’re referring to Sharia law.
To quote the Independent from July last year,

Currently, Sharia rules are not formally recognised or included in British laws.
But a network of Sharia courts has emerged to deal with disputes among Muslim families…
A few are officially recognised tribunals, operating under the Arbitration Act

That quote is from a piece about The Law Society providing advice to solicitors about the drawing up of Sharia compliant wills. If you read to the end you’ll find that they are being opposed and are only guidance not laws.

On to other topics: First, are you worried about climate change or the environment? UKIP reckons it’s not real. The biggest challenge facing the planet and they are in denial. They also want an end to green taxes and subsidies to wind farm development. Purely from a local view, that’s stupid. The Humber is developing an offshore wind industry, that should provide work for a not inconsiderable number of people. If they’re so hot on prosperity, why are UKIP so determined to shut down a developing industry? Just to make it worse they want to develop fracking. Fracking is associated with water pollution. It has been banned already in several countries. In my opinion fracking is merely a last ditch attempt by people too scared of change to hold on to some form of petrochemical based civilization, it’s like coal tar sand extraction on that respect. Just accept things have to change and stop making excuses.

Next up, UKIP demand an end to various cuts to services yet also want less tax. How are services to be paid for with less money? They also want a flat rate of tax for everyone. Now, that seems fair until you realise that a person earning £100,000 a year isn’t going to feel the pinch as much as someone earning £15,000 a year (full time, just over minimum wage), say if the tax rate is 20%. But that’s the thing, UKIP have this proposal but no details. So we don’t know if their flat rate of tax is going to be 5%, 50% or somewhere in between.

And  finally, UKIP want to:

Remove the UK from the jurisdiction of the European Court of Human Rights

Why? Human rights, the defense of, is surely a generally good thing?

At no point anywhere in the UKIP website are there any detailed proposals, costings, or evidence to back up their claims.

So if the official UKIP website is a bust where else should we look. Completely unprofessional to suggest it, but try a search engine. I searched for ‘Ukip policies’. The results gave me some information.

They want to get rid of paid annual leave entitlement. What sensible working person votes for a party that will basically make it impossible to have time off work?
You want evidence obviously, I mean, I could be making all this up… So, here’s a quote from section 3.1 of their small business manifesto:

“UKIP would put an end to most legislation regarding matters such as weekly working hours, holidays and holiday, overtime, redundancy or sick pay etc

.”

They want to get rid of maternity pay and parental leave. That’s right ladies and gents, you have kids and want to spend time with your precious during the first few month of their lives, knowing you’ve got a job to go back to and a minimum income? Sorry, UKIP won’t let you.

…UKIP proposes to vastly simplify this legislation.  It would be up to each employer to decide whether to offer parental leave and this would be one of the items included in the standard employment contract (see above). An SME which refuses to offer parental leave will either have to offer young women higher salaries than other businesses which offer a long leave period or they will simply have to recruit from a smaller pool of potential employees.

This is the same party who’s leader suggested working mothers were of less value than men, and that to be treat equally women must give up family life. The same demand is not made of men, obviously.

I don’t like UKIP, Nigel Farage has a face made for slapping and his party are unpleasant. What really interests me is the number of people voting for them. In Immingham (Population 11507, total votes cast 2860)  33.2% of votes went to UKIP. The Lib Dem-Con coalition government got in on a similar minority in 2011. Please tell me I’m not the only one who finds this a disturbing idea? If the Conservatives can elbow their way to power on a minority, what stops an even more right wing party doing the same thing?

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