How to solve a problem like Nigel Farage?
Nigel Farage is currently the golden boy of British politics, it is impossible to pick up a paper or turn on the news without seeing Nigel Farage. And since his debating victory against Nick Clegg he has only become more popular, it is fair to say Nigel Farage is defiantly helping UKIP in the polls. He has a natural affinity with working people and those who feel the political class ignores them, but for some reason rather than taking a page from his book the main party leaders take swipes at the UKIP leader every time they get a chance and so far all this has led to is the increasing popularity of UKIP and Nigel Farage.
UKIP have hit a rich seam of British anger and it is not just over Europe it is the general high handedness of the political class. People are fed up of spin, fed up of the party line and fed up of they did this they did that politics. Both Labour and the Conservatives need to look at how UKIP is playing politics and start doing something similar, UKIP does not have a big media machine like the main parties but its popularity still is rising. And the rise of UKIP actually confirms what many people believe about the political class today, UKIP were ignored then they got more popular and they were ridiculed by the main parties but still they got more and more popular. This show what people think about the main parties, your either too small to matter and when your opinion gains some traction if it does not fit the political centre ground the main parties try to discredit it, as the last Labour government did on immigration. UKIP keeps getting more popular because it is not a main Westminster party, they are an old style political party, they are not all polished and shiny but rough and ready, Farage goes to pubs and drinks British beer, he sounds and looks like a man who would stick up for Britain. While David Cameron seems to be largely hot air when it comes to dealing with Europe and Ed Miliband is struggling to lead his own party never mind the country
But how do the main parties get some of UKIP’s success? I think it’s simple, they need to listen to Nigel, he is in touch with the politically disenchanted and those who vote but who are sick of both Labour and the Conservatives. It is not hard to see what these voters want they want to be taxed less they want to be able to afford a beer in the pub and they want a job. These are all things the Conservatives should be doing anyway, it is not the market that is causing prices of beer to rocket it is tax and policies such as a 1p cut to beer duty actually means nothing in practice. The main parties have to acknowledge that immigration can be bad for some groups in society and do something to protect these people from immigrations more damaging effects. Such as enforcing the minimum wage, and as other European countries do removing people if they come here and don’t work for a long period of time. Set up proper apprentice schemes like Germany has and give people the hope of a career if they go into more practical education.
UKIP is just offering people what they have been moaning about for a long time now, and the only reason they are not more popular is that they are new and are seen as a little unsafe, a little sexist and a little racist. The Conservatives and Labour should be using this perception not to attack UKIP but to take some of their more popular policies and watch voters start to reconsider voting UKIP. However this may already be too late, the main parties have spent to long attacking UKIP and failing to listen to them, yes the Conservatives are offering a referendum on Europe but there is now more to UKIP than just Europe. If UKIP continues to be ignored then they could be a force that’s here to stay and in the long run that should give Labour sleepless nights rather than the Conservatives.