With the EU referendum having given them a result of which they approve, the upcoming General Election gives the motley convocation of saloon bar propper-uppers at UKIP a problem: they can’t campaign for Britain to leave the EU, as this is already happening. So what can they do to get the attention of the voters? This has clearly taxed party leader Paul Nuttall, aka the “Bad Bootle Meff”. And we now know his answer.
An' then I pulled the f***in' trigger, but it still didn't stop me bein' a total f***in' divvy
This is because Nuttall, with his early-Alexei-Sayle-meets-Pub-Landlord schtick, fetched up this morning on The Andy Marr Show (tm) to extol the virtues of casting a vote for the party of Himself Personally Now. His pitch was, not to drive it around the houses for too long, that there should be action taken against Scary Muslims (tm), because they were multiplying at a rate which caused him grave concern.
So Nuttall wanted to ban the burqa. Why was this? “We have a heightened security risk at the moment and for CCTV to be effective you need to see people’s faces”. Very good, so would Sir like to repeal the motorcycle helmet law? Perhaps he’d like to ban his pals at the EDL from using all those face-coverings for which they are so notorious? But the UKIP leader did have another reason why he wanted to campaign against Muslims.
“There’s the issue of integration. I don’t believe that you can integrate fully and enjoy the fruits of British society if you can’t see people’s faces. And, you know, look at some of the statistics. 58% of Muslim women are economically inactive”. Will banning the burqa, which the vast majority don’t wear, make them suddenly become economically active? Er, no.
And then came the first jaw-dropping howler: Nuttall said his party’s idea would make us good Europeans: “What happens in France for example is there’s a fine and what we’re doing is we’ll come in line with other European countries such as Belgium, Bulgaria, there’s a ban for example in the City of Barcelona, some places in Italy and indeed Angela Merkel’s talking about this in Germany at the moment”.
Yes, the leader of UKIP, the most anti-EU party in the UK, is arguing for the UK to follow what other EU member states are allegedly doing, as a time when we’re leaving the EU. Also, UKIP claims to be a libertarian party, as Marr pointed out.
Then came the other howler, as Nuttall argued for the end of Sharia tribunals. Why do this? “Because I don’t believe that we should have a [parallel] legal system in this country” was Nuttall’s answer. But there is no parallel legal system in this country. Civil disputes can be addressed by employing lawyers, but can also be resolved through mediation, which is where Sharia tribunals, and the Jewish Beth Din, come in.
And would Nuttall also abolish the Beth Din, then? Er, no he wouldn’t, because “The Jewish population in Britain, orthodox Jewish population is falling. It’s about a quarter of a million now. The issue surrounding Sharia is that the Muslim population is doubling decade on decade. It’s three million now, it’ll be six million soon”. Yes, someone claiming to be a serious politician says they breed like rabbits, so we have to take action against them.
Paul Nuttall is a desperate, barrel-scraping bigot, abandoning any semblance of libertarianism so he and his pals can go on an Islamophobia bender. No thanks.