Let there be no mistake, though – my disappointment originates not in the fact that Bill Etheridge MEP allegedly made the remarks in the first place, but in the universal disparagement of this as a Bad Thing.
According to the Mail on Sunday (so take this with a pinch of salt), Mr Etheridge told UKIP Youth Conference members in Birmingham: “Look back to the most magnetic and forceful public speaker possibly in history.
“When Hitler gave speeches, and many of the famous ones were at rallies, at the start he walks, back and forth, looked at people – there was a silence, he waited minutes just looking out at people, fixing them with his gaze.”
It is true that I enjoy criticising UKIP and its members’ crazy ideas very much and take as many opportunities as possible to do so.
I also enjoy a good laugh.
The prospect of Kippers strutting about like demented chickens, giving the evil eye to all and sundry, has been welcomed with hilarity at VP Towers – as has the possibility that this behaviour may scare off potential voters before the candidates have uttered a single word.
It seems Mr Etheridge has failed to grasp the fact that this speech style worked for Hitler because – like it or not – he was immensely charismatic and could make it work for him, and his speeches were tailored to reinforce the effect. With the best will in the world, it is hard to imagine Brummie Kippers achieving the same feats of mesmerism.
Notice also that Mr Etheridge did not mention the other notable characteristic of Hitler’s speeches – flatulence.
As above, so below; when Hitler started to speak, slowly and quietly, he would begin delivering short gassy messages from the rear, in similar tempo and at similar volume. As his speech became louder and faster, so did his sphincter.
How surprising that Mr Etheridge omitted to mention this!
Did he not realise it would bring the house down if one of his students, finishing a speech, accompanied his final line of something like “We need breathing-room!” with a 21-bum salute?
Follow me on Twitter: @MidWalesMike
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