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Ukip Can't Turn Back the Clock

10/11/2014 17:17 GMT | Updated 10/01/2015 10:59 GMT

Whilst delivering some leaflets I knocked at the door of a man in late 60s or early 70s - he quickly announced he was a Ukip supporter - in fact he seemed very keen to tell me that. We had a chat - he said that the EU was a bad thing and said we should leave it - I said that I thought we needed to change how it works and suggested that we were not that far apart on that subject.

Then he said something like "What happened to all the old customs - that dancing around the pole thing?" We decided he meant maypole dancing. To him, his reasons for supporting Ukip seem to include a longing for the old customs - a longing for the past. Did he also mean a time in the past when there were fewer immigrants? To be fair he did not say that.

It is ironic that the custom of maypole dancing may well have originated in Germany and is also a custom in many other countries in Europe. And it turns out that even morris dancing may have had its origins as a 'Moorish' dance with some Spanish connections - is seems even the past changes when you look at it.

I don't mean any disrespect to him, but I think this comment was revealing - this man wants a return to the past and seems to think that Ukip can deliver that and I don't think he is the only Ukip supporter who thinks this way.

No doubt he will vote for Ulip should they stand someone in his area - but I know he will not get what he wants because it doesn't exist anymore - and probably never really did. Societies change all the time and communities in the UK have been changing for centuries through immigration and - if you go back far enough through invasion.

Ukip will ultimately disappoint (because all parties do in the end) - at the moment Ukip are many things to their supporters - an alternative to the establishment, a 'friend' to the ordinary man (not so much for women judging by some comments from them) and their supporters hope they will stop all this uncomfortable change and maybe even turn back the clock.

In reality they promise little more than wanting us out of the EU even though we appear to be doing well whilst in Europe with a growing UK economy. They want to stop immigrants coming here even though immigrants can bring wealth and do some of the jobs we don't want to do - and such is their issue with foreigners - they don't even want to give aid to other countries - except perhaps to foreign Christians.

No one knows for sure what would happen if we left the EU but we do know for sure that we are not doing badly being in the EU - our economy is growing again and employment is up. The EU is very far from perfect and needs to change but we will take an enormous risk if we leave and no one can know what would happen to the UK. Why not be in partnership with other Countries - is it just because they are foreigners?

Mr Farage argues that the EU is undemocratic that it costs us money but he has already admitted that even if it is good for our Country's wealth he would still want to leave. He would rather we were poorer as a nation than work with other countries. Research has shown that in recent years immigrants from Europe bring more wealth than they cost in support - but we should not kid ourselves that means anything to Ukip.

There are many inequalities in this Country - low pay for many workers - women not paid an equal wage for the work they do - benefits being cut to those with least - but this is not the fault of the EU or immigrants coming to the UK - and it certainly isn't the fault of the foreigners who receive our aid. Leaving the EU and some how stopping immigrants coming into this country will not remove these inequalities.

Large scale immigration causes problems in some of our communities and there should be appropriate controls on immigration - but Ukip don't call for more resources being put into those communities - instead they encourage people to blame foreigners for all our ills.

The man I was talking to doesn't live in a diverse community - it is almost entirely white British so it can't be a matter of him reacting to what he sees in everyday life. He like many Ukip supporters seems to buy into the fear of change and, perhaps, the fear of foreigners and difference that Farage exploits.

Things will be challenging for the Lib Dems next year - Labour seems to want to lose the election and the Tories will go on looking after the wealthiest - but Ukip will do nothing but feed resentment and create scapegoats - and they certainly can't bring back the past.