UKIP's founder fed up with UKIP
Much like the rest of us... Yes, this article's from The Guardian, which is hardly sympathetic to the UK Independence Party's cause, but even so... Good stuff:
"Over the past seven years the disasters - many of them self made - have come thick and fast. Ukip has seen at least three leadership challenges, been infiltrated by racists, had a mass walkout of its national executive committee, faced allegations of intimidatory tactics, fought off claims of financial wrongdoing and battled threats of expensive legal action...
"Alan Sked, a lecturer at the London School of Economics, who founded the party, yesterday said Ukip was filled with the politically naive and intellectually challenged. Dr Sked had left the party in 1997 complaining of extremists and electoral doom. 'I kill myself laughing when I look at it now," he said yesterday. "It is a Westminster farce except it's not in Westminster.'
"It was all a long way from the ideals discussed in the party's infancy, when Dr Sked hoped to attract brilliant young graduates, political thinkers and intellectuals. Instead, he claims, Ukip was taken over by a group of 'aged xenophobes ... meaningless fuddy duddies with very little intelligence' who brought the Eurosceptic movement into disrepute.
"'There is a perfectly good intelligent case for Britain coming out of Europe, but people ... stand back in horror. I look at them and think if this bunch get into power I will flee to Brussels,' he said."
Damn straight. The rabid nonsense spouted by so many Eurosceptics is one of the major reasons I started to look at the other side of the argument - I simply didn't want to be associated with those people any more. Their alarmist, factually inaccurate rants against everything European were what turned me pro-EU.
There are still some very compelling Eurosceptic arguments, but the likes of UKIP simply aren't putting them forward, instead preferring to make headline-grabbing, often plain wrong pronouncements. Just as us pro-Europeans need a more effective "Yes" campaign, so too do the Eurosceptics need better spokespeople for the "No".