Rebranding the BNP

Ah, the BNP. The good old British National Party. And Nick Griffin. Poor old Nick. Things aren’t going so well for Nick, I’m afraid, not like they used to, back when he could get himself booked on Question Time and win council seats by the score as the protest vote of choice. But no longer. It’s over, Nick. You lost. You lost Burnley, for heavens’ sake, and if there was ever a town tailor-made for the BNP protest vote it was Burnley. But you’ve been outwitted by the bigger parties, the proper parties, and you’ve been trumped by UKIP as the party of protest.

How Nick must hate Nigel Farage. I doubt he could hate him more if he were black. Nigel isn’t everyone’s cup of tea, a lot of people think of UKIP as closet racists (although many more don’t), but still, if they’re racist at least they’re in the closet. Nick and his pals had to open the door and walk right out, made a half-arsed effort to pretend not to be racists any more (to appease the majority) and made sure their core realised they still were. How else could they get the vote?

Well Nigel’s shown them how. You can be populist without being overtly racist. Shocking, isn’t it?

So perhaps it’s time Nick thought about change. Something radical. I suspect people make radical suggestions about what Nick Griffin could do with his life fairly frequently, but he needn’t worry, this isn’t that type of suggestion. This is advice, genuine advice, and it’s free. Granted, it’s coming from someone who knows less about the reality of politics than the average radish, but the average radish is probably more politically astute than the average BNP campaigner so Nick should probably take whatever he’s offered.

The thing is, Nick has spent years trying to claim that his party isn’t what it used to be. The BNP, says Nick (out of one mouth), is a proper, mainstream political party, with serious policies and ideas about everything from Anschluss to Zyklon B. The BNP isn’t a party of racists, a party of thugs, not any more, says Nick. They’ve all gone, fled to the EDL and Combat 18 (do they still exist?) and wherever it is people too demented for Nick Griffin call home these days. When he used to talk (out of his other mouth) about the terrible threat from all the Muslims and the Jews and the Blacks and the Gays, these people used to listen to him. But they’re not there any more.

So – here’s the radical idea. Nick should retire that mouth completely. Sew it up. Speak out of the one, “sensible” mouth. Say the same old crap, about how you’ve changed and you’re sensible and people from every country and ethnic or religious background or sexual orientation have a place in the BNP now. But back it up by, for instance, no longer tweeting the addresses of gay couples who are cross that they’re not allowed to share a bed. But we won’t believe him, the rest of us. Why would we? They’re still the same old BNP, after all.

So change the BNP. Really change it. Kick out the old guard (yes, Nick Griffin is the old guard, but that’s a bridge he’ll cross later, no doubt). And then do something even better.

Change the name.

Simple as that. Rebrand. Change the name. If you don’t want to be associated with the bunch of racist morons that “used to” run the BNP, change the name of the party. Call it British Future or Empire Revisited or some gibberish like that, it doesn’t matter, it’ll be the best publicity you ever get, because it’ll be free, you’ll be invited onto every political show out there to talk about it, and you’ll be able to hold out your hands and say look, come join us, we have exorcised the demons of the past and now we are the best future you’ve got.

Now, you might ask, why am I doing this? Why give advice to a bunch of people I detest (and make no mistake about it, I do detest them)?

Because here’s the thing. The BNP’s been around for years, and it’s been spouting this “we’re not what we used to be” crap for most of those years, which means somewhere along the line someone inside the party must already have made this suggestion. But they didn’t take it up. And I can’t for the life of me think why, except for two reasons.

The first is that it’s all bollocks. They are still a bunch of racists, and their period as the opportunist party, the party of protest, was just the briefest of days in the sun. They’ll spend the rest of their political existence scuttling around under the rocks like the insects they are.

And the second is much simpler. Even if it were all a lie, even if they were still a bunch of idiot racists, why not use the lie? Why not keep spinning that same old line, but spin it better than ever, win a few votes back from UKIP, peer out from under that rock for a moment and glimpse daylight?

Why not? Oh, that’s easy.

They’re just too damned stupid.

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If you liked this, please comment and share, and don’t forget to take a look at some extracts from my soon-to-be-published novel Without Due Care here.

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