The Guardian doesn’t really seem to understand this country

Critics said his comments represent the “ugliest side of Ukip” and “overlap with the far-right”, in spite of the efforts of party leader Nigel Farage to create a disciplined election machine ahead of the European elections.

Asked on Tuesday about the charter, Batten told the Guardian he had written it with a friend, who is an Islamic scholar, and could not see why “any reasonable, normal person” would object to signing it.

Batten also repeated his view that some Muslim texts need updating, claiming some say “kill Jews wherever you find them and various things like that”.

“If that represents the thinking of modern people, there’s something wrong, in which case maybe they need to revise their thinking. If they say they can’t revise their thinking on those issues, then who’s got the problem – us or them?” he added.

Leave aside entirely whether you or I agree with the statement for a moment (I most certainly agree with the second part of it). Think instead for a moment about it as politics. Is this likely to gain votes or not?

And if it does indeed, as I think it will, gain votes then what on earth can be wrong with expressing such views in a democracy? Isn’t this rather the point of the whole democratic game? To ascertain the wishes, desires and opinions of the demos and then to appeal to them?

7 comments on “The Guardian doesn’t really seem to understand this country

  1. No, no, Timmy. The purpose of politics is to ascertain the wishes, desires, opinions of the demos and then to appeal to them, and having appealed to them go on and do what you were going to do anyway.

    The Graun gets this. They’re entirely happy for their favoured politicos of the moment to carry out their plans regardless of the wishes of the demos (having first lied to the demos to get into power). But they don’t approve of UKIP’s plans so don’t want them in. Whether or not UKIP’s approach is to be open before the election about what they would do after the election is irrelevant.

    On the main issue, islam is rather more of a demographic threat than a terrorist one, a potential problem in whose context one would hesitate to offer anyhing called a “solution”. Which is why it is clever of Batten to concentrate on islamic violence rather than the intolerance that is tolerated (but not actively promoted) by millions of European muslims.

    In fact most non-muslims would also be quite happy to have a totalitarian dictatorship that squished other people but let them alone. I don’t think liberal freedom stuff comes naturally to many people, muslim or otherwise. Which is sad.

  2. Cast your mind back to say when Red Ken was voted out as Mayor of London — all the bien pensants were calling that a “failure of democracy”. Clearly they regard the ballot paper as a multiple choice exam, and people have to get the correct answer for it to be democratic.

  3. “THE GUARDIAN DOESN’T REALLY SEEM TO UNDERSTAND THIS COUNTRY”

    Were you thinking of Portugal or The Czech Republic, Tim?

  4. “Far right” is simply Guardianese for “anyone we don’t like”. They describe Marie Le Pen’s Front Nationale as “far right” despite the fact that about 30% of the electorate in France supports the FN. A party which gets anything near 30% of the vote is by definition not “far” anything.

  5. Especially when Marine Le Pen’s “far right” policies are as statist and authoritarian as the far left.

  6. I suggest that Batten sign his own charter, and Muslims can if they wish sign an alternative document renouncing biblical versus like Numbers 31:15-18 – “kill every male among the little ones, and kill every woman that hath known man”.

  7. PaulB, academically that’s a fair point, but it doesn’t engage very far with the real world, does it?

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