A Surprising UKIP

I came across a couple of interesting articles about UKIP today, written by two “impartial and expert” political scientists. The first set out to debunk one myth about UKIP:

Myth No 1: Ukip’s supporters are all grumpy Tories

It is certainly true that new recruits to Ukip are more likely to have voted for the Conservatives in 2010 than any other party. But portraying the Ukip rebellion as simply a split on the Right glosses over two important facts.

First, focusing on trends since 2010 is misleading. Ukip has only recruited most strongly from the Conservative Party since the Cameron-led government began. When Labour were in charge of the country under Tony Blair, and then Gordon Brown, Ukip picked up more support from Labour than from the Tories.

It goes on:

Ukip’s supporters look more like Old Labour than True Blue Tories. Ukip’s supporters tend to be blue-collar, older, struggling economically, and often live in poorer, urban areas, with big pools of support in the Labour heartlands of the North. Middle-class suburbanites do not dominate Ukip. They shy away from it.

In fact, Ukip are Britain’s most working-class party. Blue-collar workers are heavily over-represented. Middle-class professionals are scarce. Such voters often express as much hostility to the Conservative party as they do to Labour.

The second article sets out to demolish another myth:

Myth No.2: Ultimately, this is about Europe

Despite mounting evidence to the contrary, the myth that Ukip’s support is driven by voters with an obsessive interest in Britain’s relations with Europe remains well entrenched. The underlying logic is clear enough: Ukip were founded as an anti-EU pressure group, their leaders talk a lot about Europe and so their voters must similarly be motivated by mistrust and anger toward those Eurocrats in Brussels and Strasbourg. This myth is having a profound impact on British party politics, leading many to assume that holding a referendum on the country’s EU membership is the only possible way of fending off the Ukip challenge….

Euroscepticism alone is seldom enough to prompt a switch to Ukip – it is a necessary condition, but not a sufficient one

This can be illustrated by comparing Eurosceptic Brits who intend to back Ukip, with Eurosceptic Brits who do not (a comparison that we develop more fully in our book). As shown below, there are some important differences between these two groups of voters. While both voice concerns over Europe, those who plan to follow Farage are more clearly also motivated by a wider set of concerns. They are more likely to see immigration as a problem. They are more likely to express negative views toward migrants. They are more dissatisfied with the way British democracy is working. They are more likely to think Government and elites are dishonest and, and untrustworthy. They are more likely to think the established political class is not treating them fairly. And they are more likely to feel as though they have no political influence.

Ukip voters may be opposed to the EU, but they are also deeply hostile to the domestic political establishment and deeply concerned about immigration and its effects.

It all seemed entirely plausible. And it makes me much more like other UKIP supporters than I’d thought I was. For I thought that it actually was made up of Conservatives disenchanted with David Cameron, and I never think of myself as conservative (although I seem to becoming more conservative by the day).

For I’m anti-EU, and I’m deeply hostile to the domestic political establishment. The only thing I’m not deeply concerned about is immigration (although I may become so next week).

But neither article touches on the real reason why I’m a UKIP supporter: which is that I’m a smoker, and UKIP is the only party offering a relaxation of the smoking ban. And I’m also disenchanted with the political establishment for the exact same reason. And I’m disenchanted with the EU for that reason too.

The smoking ban almost completely defines my politics.

And I rather suspect that it might well define a lot of other smokers’ politics as well, particularly the urban working classes, who’ve been hit the hardest by it.

But nobody ever seems to see this. Not even these two “impartial and expert” political scientists. And I bet that’s because they simply didn’t ask. It never occurred to them that there might be something else bugging these UKIP voters, something hidden in plain sight.

I wonder if they’ll ever find out?

And another sick Public Service Announcement: This is what happens when you slack off from school:


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18 Responses to A Surprising UKIP

  1. harleyrider1978 says:

    Itd be simple enuf for me. Im tired of the major parties screwing everybody. They are suppose to fight each other,not take the same bribe money and vote for the same nannystate laws they should be against at least one side!

    Its voter frustration with both parties that drives UKIP support as they now have an OPTION!

  2. prog says:

    Truancy increases the risk of being blown up by a mine? Judging by events in the US in recent years I’d have thought there’s a greater chance of being killed by some nutter if you don’t bunk off school…

  3. jaxthefirst says:

    I’d go with that Harley. I think that there are a lot of people who are just glad that there is at least a glimmer of a choice now, are pleased that the stranglehold that the Big Three have had on politics for the last century or so is finally being challenged, and are welcoming the opportunity to support that challenge.

    But for those of us who are both Eurosceptic and smokers, UKIP seems like the first glimmer of light at the end of what has been a very, very long tunnel. Of course, there’s always the chance that if they ever found themselves in any position of power they too would let us down just like all the other parties have done. But at least, being an unknown quantity, no-one can know that for certain, so there has to be a feeling of “well, they can only be as bad as the others; it’s impossible to be any worse.” Any port in a storm, as they say. And of course, the Big Three parties, having had various periods with some real power to wield, have proven themselves, time and again, to be disappointing at best and downright harmful at worst, whether for those of us who despise the EU or for those of us who despise the smoking ban. Or both.

    • harleyrider1978 says:

      Well one thing for sure they are gonna get a lot of MP seats coming up! I don’t think enough to get prime minister for Nigel. But maybe enuf to force a coalition government and thatd be enuf to get the fucking ban repealed!

  4. harleyrider1978 says:

    Vince Harden Here’s what another ASH spokesperson said 7 years ago. “When I interviewed her in 2004, Amanda Sandford of Ash acknowledged unintentionally that much secondary smoking science is unscientific. She said: “A lot of the studies that have been done on passive smoking produce results that are not statistically significant according to conventional analysis.” In plain English, that means that if secondary smoking were not already the focus of a torrent of moral sanctimony, few reputable scientists would dare to assert that it causes lung cancer, heart disease or any of the other life-threatening conditions with which it is routinely associated.”


  5. harleyrider1978 says:

    Derek, London, 11 hours ago

    All you anti smoking evangelists won’t be laughing at the increase in your tax if they do ultimately ban smoking , whatever happened to live and let live , how about you get on with your life and i’ll get on with mine

    74 thumbs up and 5 down the Nazis took a beating by the public on this story

    Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/debate/article-2548372/If-let-Nanny-State-hound-parents-smoke-cars-I-dread-think-itll-pick-next.html#ixzz2rwCpgSD8

  6. harleyrider1978 says:

    Will they ban E-cigarettes next?
    IT has taken many accidents before holding mobile telephones whilst driving was made illegal and even now enforcement is difficult.

    Smoking, eating and tuning in radios or sat navs can result in a dangerous driving charge, so how long will it take to outlaw driving whilst puffing an ‘electronic cigarette’?

    These devices are too cumbersome to be held between lips so must be hand-held, again, this leaves only one hand for driving. Today at the Mountbatten Roundabout I saw such an incident.

    The lady involved struggled with gears and steering with one hand, whilst clutching on to what could only be described as a mini torch in her mouth.

    This device may be great to wean smokers away from tobacco and its health risks, but will cost lives in motor accidents.

    The law needs changing now whilst the trend is in its early stages.


  7. harleyrider1978 says:

    Effects of Cigarette Smoking on Performance in a Simulated Driving Task
    Sherwood N.

    Human Psychopharmacology Research Unit, University of Surrey, Milford Hospital, Godalming, UK

    A double-blind study was conducted to investigate the psychomotor effects of cigarette smoking on a 1-hour computer-based simulation of driving comprising continuous tracking and brake reaction time tasks. Twelve minimally abstinent smoker subjects were asked to operate the simulator on four occasions while smoking single cigarettes yielding varying levels of nicotine (< 0.1, 0.6, 1.0 or 2.1 mg) but similar levels (8–10 mg) of tar. Data were transformed with regard to baseline scores to counter day-to-day differences in performance and showed brake reaction times to be improved after all active treatments (p < 0.01) but tracking accuracy to be enhanced after the two cigarettes of middle strength alone (p < 0.05). These results suggest that, among smokers, cigarette smoking may improve driving performance and that there may exist an optimal nicotine dose for the enhancement of cognitive and psychomotor function.

  8. Walt says:

    UKIP seems to share many of the same goals and much of the same constituency as the US Tea Party. Though I too at least have believed that it’s mostly made up of disgruntled Republicans and newly-fledged Libertarians and is pretty much the “Leave us alone, goddamit” party. What beats hell out of me, having watched some of their rallies on television, is how the left has so successfully and wrongly tarred them as racists and loonies so that therefore much of our suburban middle class and the mainstream Republicans don’t want to get near them. A big mistake for the R party, IMO.

    As for the immigration issue much like the gay marriage issue, the wrongly established meme is that to oppose unbridled immigration or gay marriage means you hate immigrants and homosexuals, neither of which is so. But again, the onslaught of propaganda works (as we all know too well).

    The video was the best laugh I’ve had today. Almost like one of those sci-fi movies where some kind of Leviathon rises from the sea to punish the carefree evil doers. (Surprised they weren’t also shown smoking to symbolize their decadence.) The logical caption isn’t Stay in School, but Don’t Play on an Army Base or else, at the least, Stay In School Long Enough To Learn How To Read.

  9. junican says:

    To be positively ‘FOR’ UKIP, purely and only on the grounds of a desire to disassociate from the EU ideal, would depend upon the nature of the ‘EU Ideal’.
    I don’t think that it is fanciful to believe, even without proof, that the EU is an artificial construct. It still contains the sensible idea of a big, free market, with “standards”, but it will fail (and possibly disastrously so) because it ran with ideas which could be disastrous without the originators of the plan being castigated and impoverished.
    The situation in Cyprus is a case in point. Much ado was displayed in the press,but no ado was displayed in the EU regarding how the mess in Cyprus developed.
    What I contend is that such events should be plain and obvious to Financial Scientists. In fact, I would contend that the facts WERE plain and obvious, and that many persons made stacks of millions of pounds/dollars WITH THE UNSTATED COLLUSION of administrators.
    The horror of the situation in Cyprus was collusion.
    Bigger and bigger equals more and more corrupt.

    If our Government does not disassociate from this corruption, and encourage other States to do so, then it is itself grossly corrupt. Of course, I only include current politicians as ancillaries. Cameron etc fail utterly. None of them have either the courage of Churchill or the intellectual rigour of Enoch Powell.As far as I know, Cameron, Milliband and the boy Clegg have not got any real and substantial intellectual expertise. If they have, they certainly seem to avoid displaying their erudite expertise.
    But their lack of erudite expertise is what SHOULD BE the strength of our system of Government. Genuinely humble politicians should seek advice from various sources, not always academic. Imagine in WW2 if the gearing up of industry had depended upon the likes of Arnnott, Duggan, Hastings, and similar blatherers, I mean that not one of them have any actual expertise in any real ‘science’ or ‘engineering’. In that sentence, ‘science’ means ‘theory’, and ‘engineering’ means ‘putting into practice’.
    However, the Zealots have coolly and systematically buggered science and engineering up. Curious that proper scientists have not complained.


    Revolution is needed. That revolution could come from A MASSIVE CHANGE IN UNIVERSITIES from blathering about how to play the piano to actually playing it.

    In smoking terms, that means that the Zealots have to be FORCED to PROVE every assertion. I leave you with that thought.

  10. I’ve been voting UKIP for several years now. Of course, to be free from Brussels, but also because they don’t follow the agenda of the other three (or four if you include the SNP up here) of furthering ideological subversion to hasten national destruction. (Just ask if you need that link to the Yuri Bezmenov video again!)

    Not sure why some of UKIPs’ leaders aren’t calling for treason trials. If the masses continue to vote in LibLabCon puppet governments then getting Blair, Cameron, Clegg and others banged to rights for their treason should make the others behave.


  11. beobrigitte says:

    The smoking ban almost completely defines my politics.

    Indeed, At this point in time I am experiencing what it feels like being a VALUED customer again. I would like to be treated the same in England. A COMFORTABLE smoking room in pubs/cafes etc. would most certainly invite me out again.

  12. Bill says:

    Changing the driver isn’t going to stop the car from going over the cliff.

  13. prog says:

    I doubt UKIP will have much representation in parliament come next election. But it’s becoming a significant player in LAs, which are riddled with ratz (elected or not). That said, what concerns me is the poor quality of some UKIP spokespeople. Some seem to have the habit of engaging mouths before brains, particularly re immigration.

    • nisakiman says:

      Yes, I’d agree with that statement. I guess their problem is that they have a relatively small pool of talent to call on, so inevitably some less than able people are going to find themselves in quotable positions. Which of course doesn’t do UKIP any favours.

      Personally, my support for UKIP isn’t just the EU issue, or the immigration issue, although I do agree they are both things which need addressing. Predominantly my support stems from their approach to freedom of choice, and also, I have to admit, the fact that I find Farage an appealing prospect as a leader. He reminds me of those men who became great leaders, despite, or perhaps because of, their eccentricities. Think of the cigar-chomping, champagne swilling Churchill. How far would he have got in today’s political climate? He wouldn’t have got beyond the PC first base. God, we have an utterly colourless bunch at the moment; totally lacking any vestige of imagination or leadership.

  14. Rose says:


    Do I need to join the smokers’ clique to be treated fairly at work?

    Previously –

    Secretarial: No smoke without gossip – 1998

    “Judi James, a management trainer who recently published a survey with the Industrial Society entitled Sex at Work, believes that employee relations – both personal and business-related – actually thrive in a furtive environment. “You have this little coterie which shares a vice and which bonds together; it’s a similar environment to a school common room. It’s not like e-mails, where people are paranoid that everybody can read them.”

    “Some employees may believe the keys to power are to be found among the ashtrays. But David Butcher, director of general management programmes at Cranfield School of Management, says that’s not the case: “Most networking which makes any difference is done on a senior management level. Smoking rooms are more of a social club than anything else. ”

    And again.

    The solidarity of street smokers – 2010

    “Judi James, a behavioural and workplace expert, believes there is more at stake for smokers than just a nicotine top up.
    “Smokers’ workplace bonding has always given them a very unfair advantage,” she says.

    “There’s something about the act of rebellion, it breaks down the hierarchy between people who wouldn’t normally speak to each other. It’s a shared act of naughtiness and when people have got a fag on, the normal rules of communication don’t apply.”

    The default body language of smokers is gossipy and conspiratorial – even if they’re not gossiping she says – and this can create suspicion amongst non-smokers.”

    “So would a mass dispersal bring a swift end to this ad hoc bonding?”
    “Ms James thinks if it leads to smokers taking a walk then this networking opportunity will be lost as humans don’t move in groups, especially across different social groups.”

    You don’t have to smoke to join the smokers, they really don’t mind.

    • smokingscot says:

      Sorry Rose, that doesn’t work for me. I’ll happily speak to anyone actively smoking outside because we’re there by force and in almost all cases, reluctantly. Also I like to get their views on the ban, politicians and the whole TC issue. Way better than that irksome intro about the weather.

      For the rest, my usual rules apply. Ignore them and hopefully they’ll cease and desist. If they don’t then fag done, so am I!

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