Along with approximately 70 other people, I attended the above this evening in the Langdale Hall, Witney where I heard a speech, the bulk of which I had heard before although in different words. Nigel was introduced by Steve Harris, S.E. Regional Organizer. A video was taken of the meeting, from which a dvd will be produced, sections of his speech put on youtube and possibly the party website. Topics Nigel covered were:
NoTW breaking the law and people should be surprised? - the need for a free press - Cameron keeping the press at arms length when in opposition, but having now got into bed with them - the Met employing 45 press officers, 10 of whom came from News International - was it any wonder that there was 'something rotten in the state of Denmark - that Yates, considered deficient in the NI matter, had also been in charge of the 'cash for honours' scandal and that that inquiry should be re-held - denunciation of NI being of 'false importance' with Greece on the point of needing a second bail-out and the people near a state of revolution - the worsening economic condition of America - his belief that the old 'party allegience' is breaking down - the bad state of affairs whereby the rights of offenders trumped the rights of the victims - that immigration had to be stopped from Europe, mentioning the strain on social services whereby EU nationals were now entitled to state benefits from the day of arrival - that the 2020 EU strategy was utter madness, citing that Germany has 22,000 wind turbines but is having to build 6 coal-fired power stations to maintain the demand for energy - that Clegg's wife is a director of a Spanish wind company - that the UK in effect has to go to Brussels with a begging bowl and ask for some of our money back, ending with the question: "Is this what a once great country has come to?"
Nigel spoke for 30 minutes, after which questions were taken, questions on:
Leaving the EU unilaterally, to which Nigel replied that were we to so do, we would be liable to a demand for payment coupled with a fine from the ECJ and that we could of course just ignore it as did the French over the 'beef war'. He hoped that it could be done amicably, by negotiation - the future of Ukip, which he said that short-term was to come first in the 2014 Euro elections after which a demand for a referendum would be difficult for the government to refuse, that after that he would campaign for small government, low taxes and self-governance - that he believes a radical change in Europe is taking place and cited the True Finns, the fact that in the age group 18-24 Ukip have a larger following than the LibDems in the North of England - that on the matter of our military defence Cameron is leading us into an EU military force, the rebuttal of which will be that the UK does not have the kit to be a major player and is thus unable to look after the security of our country.
Questions were terminated after 30 minutes by Steve Harris, at which point I left. The reason for that is at the commencement of questions he stated that he wouldn't take any from Ukip members, although he did, and that he would only accept those from 'faces he did not recognise' - which meant my raised arm was ignored, consequently my question was unable to be put.
I do not believe it advisable, nor sensible, to 'air dirty washing in public', suffice it to say that my 'sounding off', prior to the meeting, about the planning and 'pre-meeting work' which had been most noticeable by its absence, probably contributed to not being called to put my question.
Oh well, c'est la vie......................
Update: I have since been advised by the County Organizer that the attendance was in fact 98 plus two late arrivals.