Vox Political is not the only website to have run a post-mortem on yesterday’s (October 9) by-elections – its the latest mass-media darling, as Paul Bernal makes clear in his latest article.
What makes his different is his conclusion as to why people voted UKIP in such large proportions in both elections. You should visit his site and read most of the article for yourself, but here’s the part that seems most relevant:
“The blame game is an easy one to play – which is part of the reason for the success of UKIP. They play it better than almost anyone, convincing us sometimes that the EU is to blame for everything, sometimes that immigrants are to blame for everything, sometimes both. Sometimes they blame ‘LibLabCon’. It’s easy to do. And yet it misses the point.
“In the end, the problem isn’t with ‘someone else’. It’s us.
“That’s the scariest thing about yesterday’s election. Not that it’s somehow unrepresentative of how we are, but that it might [not] be. The things that UKIP uses as dog whistles, the racism, the homophobia, the xenophobia, the desire to blame people weaker than ourselves, only function as dog whistles because there’s a lot of racism, homophobia and xenophobia about. It taps into something about us. Of course it’s only part of UKIP’s appeal, because the other call to arms, the one against the self-serving Westminster Elite, hits another critical nerve. The Westminster elite are self-serving, disconnected and deserving primarily of contempt. Farage is quite right about that – though he conveniently fails to mention that he’s one of them in almost every way. The trouble is, it is us that have let them get that way. And we continue to do so – even by voting UKIP.
“I don’t have any answers. I don’t think there really are any answers. When we’re fighting against ourselves, it’s hard to find them. We really are our own worst enemies.”
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