Friday, 29 June 2018

UKIP's new memes are truly "dank"

Just a couple of days ago the leaders of the shambolic remains of UKIP announced that they'd hired the services of four of the most grotesque right-wing hatemongers on the Internet.

There's the guy who became famous for teaching his girlfriend's dog to do Nazi salutes at the phrase "gas the Jews" (Mark Meechan), an inexplicably popular white supremacist and Sandy Hook conspiracy theorist Youtuber commonly known as "map wanker" (Paul Joseph Watson), a guy who responded to a flood of rape threats against Jess Phillips by saying "I wouldn't rape you" as if he's only interested in raping women he finds attractive, accused the #MeToo movement of being "golddigging whores", and expressed sympathy with the misogynist mass murderer Elliot Roger (Carl Benjamin) and an extreme-right former Brietbart editor who advocated the benefits of sex between adult men and 13 year old boys (Milo Yiannopoulos).

Hiring these foul extreme-right self-publicists is a move straight out of the Donald Trump "no such thing as bad news" approach to publicity.

As far as UKIP are concerned the extremist views and actions of these vile characters are irrelevant, as long as UKIP gains some second-hand publicity through association with them.

The objective here is obvious. UKIP are desperately attempting to drum up support for their spectacularly imploding party by piggybacking on the large social media reach of these disgusting extreme-right Internet celebrities.

In a truly cringeworthy video address the leader of the Welsh UKIP branch Neil Hamilton (yes, he is the guy who was so corrupt and self-serving he even got booted out of the Tory party in the 1990s!) gleefully welcomed these four vile extremists into the party and said how he was looking forward to them producing some "truly dank memes" ...

On the very same day he was announced as a new UKIP recruit the paedophile apologist Milo Yiannopoulos immediately gave Neil Hamilton and the Ukippers one of the "truly dank memes" they were craving when he told an Observer journalist "I can’t wait for the vigilante squads to start gunning journalists down on sight".

Just two days after his comments about killing journalists a gunman entered the building of the Capital Gazette in Annapolis and gunned down journalists on sight, just as Yiannopoulos wanted, resulting in the death of five, and the grave injury of several more.

Then Yiannopoulos got himself banned from PayPal for sending a $14.88 payment to a Jewish journalist as a coded message to David Lane's 14 word fascist slogan and "Heil Hitler" (H being the 8th letter of the alphabet).

It's undoubtable that openly fantasising about the murder of journalists and sending coded references to "Heil Hilter" to Jewish people is publicity generating behaviour, but whether this kind of publicity ends up being of any benefit to a political party that has always fervently denied being fans of extreme-right terrorism and anti-Semitic abuse is another issue altogether.

The endlessly repeated Ukipper schtick that "we're not extreme-right racists, we just want to leave the EU" doesn't work so well when your party is actively endorsing a man who fantasises about acts of extreme-right terrorism and sends anti-Semitic abuse to Jewish journalists.

Just try to imagine the media outrage if Jeremy Corbyn (or even Theresa May for that matter) had recruited an online celebrity as a political ally, only for them to openly fantasise about extreme-right terrorist attacks against journalists and then send anti-Semitic abuse to a Jewish journalist within hours of their appointment.

But the British mainstream media seem to have little interest in the fact that UKIP have hired the services of some of the most vile people on the Internet in order to sponge publicity from their huge social media reaches, or even that by refusing to discipline their new member they're normalising and endorsing vigilante violence against journalists and anti-Semitic abuse.

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