Moderate politicians are increasingly jealous of all the attention that corrupt leaders seem to be getting; and would ‘definitely’ like to break a few laws themselves – but more politely. In order to do this, they need to reach out to the extremist elements in society, while retaining plausible deniability – a bit like visiting Jeffrey Epstein’s private island, but only for the windsurfing.
The key is branding, if we call nationalism, ‘patriotism’, is that different enough? How Trumpy can we go, without going the full Alan Sugar? Does racism count if you wink or only if you get commissioned by a BBC comedy producer? Commented one MP, who was busy courting the fascist vote: ‘These sorts of people really seem passionate, they love uniforms and get invited to all the best rallies. I just want a piece of the action, any action – provided it’s not affirmative action.’
There is still the nagging doubt, if right-wing nutjobs are can so easily appropriate nationalistic symbols – maybe there’s a reason for that? You hear a lot of people fight to preserve ‘Rule Britannia’ but very few swastika-wearing skinheads seem to defend ‘It’s Raining Men’ by The Weather Girls.
Moderate focus groups are already trialling slogans such as ‘Racists please vote for us, but ixnay on the racism until we get elected’ or ‘Britain First’ for short. Remarked one bemused voter: ‘I can be proud of my country, proud of my countrymen but still be deeply ashamed of my politicians’.