Before I proceed, let me make several things clear… Firstly, although I have a certain fondness for Mrs. T (that whole ‘facing down communism at the crucial moment in history’ thing cuts you a great deal of slack with me), I am not a Tory: I just happen to think Britain needs an effective and differentiated opposition party. Secondly, I personally do not vote for anyone as I am opposed the entire system of kleptocratic populism called ‘democracy’, particularly as it is practiced in Britain… but as I realise as I cannot wish it away, I have to address democratic politics. Thirdly, although I find Roger Knapman pretty impressive for what I have heard of his views so far, I also think some of the things certain members of the United Kingdom Independence Party stands for are truly odious and amongst its ranks are to be found no small number of crackpots, conspiracy theorists and crypto-fascists.
I mention that last point because if you are going to vote for the Tory Party (and therefore obviously hold democratic politics and the Tory Party in vastly higher esteem than I do), you might do well to ask yourself why are you voting Tory?
If it is because you like the idea of broadsheet reading Grandees with their safe pair of hands on the tiller of state and trust them to do whatever they see fit in your name (i.e. you are a Ted Heath/Michael Heseltine/Chris Patten fan and therefore support Labour Party-Lite), then please stop reading now and piss off, I am not talking to you… and anyway, what on earth are you doing reading a blog like Samizdata.net which is written by people like myself who utterly despise you?
If however you vote Tory because you think the Anglosphere approach of not conflating state and society is vastly preferable to the state-centred systems which generally prevail in Continental Europe… or you have the notion that British politics of any sort should be made in Britain rather than Brussels (and yes, I suppose I am talking to no small number of Labour supporters here too)… then you have a very simple decision to make.
If you want force to the Tory Party to support traditional civil society rather than have it do nothing mote than debate the speed with which Britain acquiesces to a regulated and therefore politicised existence more in tune with Continental norms… then you must send the message that continued support for Euro-statism is not acceptable to you. And the only way you can do that is not just to abstain, but to vote for the UKIP. Only that sends an unmistakable message why you did not vote for them.
And if by doing that you cause the Tory Party to lose to Labour yet again… so what? If you care enough about the Tory Party, you will do whatever it takes to demonstrate the electoral cost of saying platitudes like ‘In Europe but not ruled by Europe’ whilst demurring to regulation after regulation from Europe which indeed amounts to being ruled by it.
Vote UKIP, at least until you have clubbed some sense back into the Tory Party.