As I have said many times before, I cannot wait until June 23rd comes and goes and we can (hopefully, so long as we vote to Remain) stop talking about the EU every second of the day in increasingly inane ways. The one thing I will really miss – and I mean this in all sincerity – is the Leave.EU campaign group backed by Arron Banks.
We live in dark political times. So now more than ever, the comfort that is to be gained by watching a group of people who stand for something you detest acting like the most laughable bunch of idiots imaginable is substantial. Yesterday, Leave.EU tweeted a picture of Jean-Claude Juncker, David Cameron and Michael Gove in bed together (badly photoshopped, relax). The caption read: “Michael Gove. Against Article 50. Whose side is he on?” Okay, the tweet was deleted fairly sharpish, but only because the reaction they got must have made them realise the depth of stupidity involved in the orginal action.
That tweet is one of the most perfect examples of bad campaigning ever. It is a rich cornucopia of “what not to do” 101. Where to start? Slagging off people who are visibly on the same side as you are in a referendum campaign is the stupidest thing you can do, period, so we’ll start with that. It’s a binary question, so all that matters for the time being is whether the person in question agrees or disagrees with you on the proposition being put to the people. But there’s just so much more to talk about. Such as the fact that it is slagging off not only a senior politician who backs Leave, but the one who is has the most gravitas (not to mention the Leaver with the most reach with Conservative voters, who will most likely be the swing vote in all of this). But even better than all that, doing so by citing his opposition to an EU treaty no one who hasn’t spent time lobbying in Brussels is likely to even have heard of.
I’m glad that Leave.EU never really factored in the designation stakes – it would have been unfair in a democratic sense to have given official status to anyone but Vote Leave. Besides, it’s so much better to have them as outsiders, even within the anti-EU community – it just suits their personality somehow.
They make me wonder why so many people who are anti-politics and anti-establishment are also really, really bad at politics. Can’t they see that they need to understand that which they attack in order to change the country in the way in which they would supposedly like to? But perhaps that isn’t what folks like Leave.EU really have in mind anyhow. I worked with some people on the Yes to AV campaign that I am convinced to this day would have jumped off a bridge the day after polling day had AV won out – they would never have been able to live with the idea that 50% of the British public agreed with them in regards to their little pet project. Perhaps this is just more of the same – people who froth with rage but really deep down want things to remain pretty much as they are so that can go on frothing.