UK Party Leader Attacks Satirical Mobile Game Made By Teenagers Interested In Politics

from the well-okay-then dept

Nigel Farage, head of the British political party UKIP (United Kingdom Independence Party), is certainly an interesting character. UKIP is something akin to a vastly more organized version of the Tea Party here in the United States, in that their policies are typically further to the right of the more common conservatives within the political system. Farage is known to be controversial, to say the least, in part because of some opposition to his party’s policies (which probably applies to most leaders of political parties in general), but more so because he often times enjoys getting in front of reporters and cameras and doing really stupid things, such as going ad hominem on a group of politically-minded teenagers who created a satirical mobile game jabbing at UKIP’s policies.

A phone app made by school students and featuring a character called Nicholas Fromage kicking immigrants off the white cliffs of Dover has been criticised by the Ukip leader, Nigel Farage. Farage claimed the game, developed by a group of sixth-formers from Canterbury Academy, was “risible and pathetic” and that it had “crossed the line”, despite saying he welcomed the opinions of young people.

The game, which is again clearly parody, is a cartoonish jab at some of UKIP’s policies with regards to immigration. Without taking any stand on the issues being discussed by the game, it seems almost too facile to point out that Farage’s taking on of the students, particularly going so far as to call their efforts “risible and pathetic”, is ill-conceived at best. To leave those attacks with a footer claiming to welcome the input of younger generations simply serves to spotlight how dumb this is. Open dialogue ought to be a politician’s best friend, particularly for the leader of a self-ascribed libertarian-leaning party. The school where the teenagers developed the game, thankfully, has the children’s backs.

But the school’s principal, Phil Karnavas, has defended the app, which he says is a bit of fun to celebrate “brilliant, traditional British satire”.

“It’s a bit rich, bearing in mind some of the things the members of Ukip have said, for their leader to say they have crossed the line. Mr Farage can’t have it both ways. He cannot expect young people to engage in politics and then criticise what they say when they do.”

Imagine instead if the footer had been the entirety of Farage’s response. What if he had simply said that he welcomes the input of younger Brits and suggested that political interest from the young is a good thing? After all, for all of the ribbing in the game, some of it quite sharp, the whole thing was framed by a disclaimer that the point was to create political dialogue. For Farage to pretend like some kind of line was crossed simply makes him look more childish than the children he attacked.

[Farage] said: “Those elements are risible and in many ways pathetic. I think I’m quite well known for having a sense of humour.”

Pro-tip: if you have to tell a reporter about how everyone knows you have a great sense of humor, you don’t have a great sense of humor.

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Comments on “UK Party Leader Attacks Satirical Mobile Game Made By Teenagers Interested In Politics”

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PaulT (profile) says:

Re: Simple mistake

Like most xenophobes and hardcore right-wingers, he welcomes any exercise of free speech that he happens to agree with. Opinions that differ from his own preconceived notions are to be feared and rejected, doubly so when new technology is utilised to make them. Subtlety and satire are beyond his ability to comprehend (even satire as unsubtle as this).

He’s probably just frustrated that he can’t blame this one on immigrants, his go-to scapegoat for everything up to and including him being late for public appearances (yes, really).

sorrykb (profile) says:

But the school’s principal, Phil Karnavas, has defended the app, which he says is a bit of fun to celebrate “brilliant, traditional British satire”.

I’m pleasantly surprised to see a principal who appreciates satire (and freedom of expression). That’s good news.

Also of note (from the school’s “principal introduction” page):

All I ever really wanted to do was to create a school that I would have liked to have gone to, in which children are happy, safe and excel.

TruthHurts (profile) says:

This slides, yet another ill-timed comedian is imprisoned...

Yes the joke was ill-timed, and crude, but was still a joke.

So what does the U.K. do? Arrest the person because he has a sick sense of humor.

While here, they let things slide.

Interesting choices indeed.

Nice to know the U.K. is consistent in it’s… erk – wait, no it isn’t. If one slides, the other certainly should as well.

Time for someone to kick the U.K. leadership in their collective arses, since it appears that’s where they’ve stowed what they use for brains.

PaulT (profile) says:

Re: Re:

“A game no-one has every heard of”

So, only popular speech is to be protected now?

“and looks like crap”

Only a fool thinks that the graphics of a game is in any way related to its quality, doubly so if the point of a game is to make a political point. Is political speech only valid if it looks pretty now?

“then you invent some headlines around it.”

Which part of the headline is inaccurate?

jameshogg says:

I’m from the U.K. Farage is a professional troll (seriously, Google his name and tell me that doesn’t look like a troll face) along with the rest of UKIP. They steal right-wing votes from the mainstream right-wing Tory conservative party because UKIP sees the Tories as being too warm and cosy with Europe.

They are a bunch of separatist lunatics who want to blame all of Britain’s woes on the European Union. We already have a separatist movement in my home country of Scotland in the form of Scottish nationalist separatism. Enough problems as it is, without these British nationalist separatists adding to them.

We seriously need a party committed to state unity over state amputation that is anti-nationalist and pro-internationalist. And we haven’t got one. The closest thing we’ve had to such a global movement in recent history were the international socialists that were hostile to U.S. imperialism and Soviet Union imperialism alike. It died when socialism died, and all the nationalist cracks are appearing as a result (as well as bullshit alliances between the so-called “left” and far-right extremist Islamist movements).

The Simpsons can still on rare occasion be funny during their long-prolonged new episodes that just don’t seem to end. This is a joke I saw that sums up UKIP and their sympathisers perfectly. Mr Burns has a memory lapse and has to be educated by Smithers on the history of Europe:

Mr Burns: What happened?

Smithers: World War One.

Mr Burns: Then what?

Smithers: Treaty of versailles

Mr Burns: Then what?

Smithers: World War Two.

Mr Burns: Then what?

Smithers: Cold War.

Mr Burns: Then what?

Smithers: Fall of the Berlin Wall.

Mr Burns: THEN what?

Smithers: European Union.

Mr Burns: European UNION?!? Good heavens.

PaulT (profile) says:

Re: Re:

“Farage is a professional troll”

Which would be all well and good if he hadn’t managed to con people into voting his party some actual parliamentary speech. Given that his party has some actual leverage in the running of the country (whoever small that might currently be), his ideas need to be publicly revealed, mocked and countered. Simply ignoring the xenophobic idiocy isn’t going to work at this point, unfortunately.

Sadly, a party running on the positive counterpoint to his party’s obsessions isn’t going to be so effective. His base are the people who think that Daily Mail headlines are accurate – not the brightest or most intellectually curious bunch.

tqk (profile) says:

We seriously need a party committed to state unity over state amputation that is anti-nationalist and pro-internationalist.

internationalist: a member or adherent of a communist or socialist International.[*]

That train left the station. Hell, let’s go back to city states. They were more controllable.


plebeian says:

Ukip are tories, pretending to be plebs to con plebs into voting tories.

TORIES: get poor people to blame poorer people.
too many poor people strugling in the UK now
UKIP: get poor people to blame immigrants and immigration.

Don’t blame tories for cuts. Don’t blame tories for austar ity. Don’t blame tories for lowering taxes on the rich. Don’t blame tories for raising vat. Don’t blame tories for low inerest rates and high inflation.

NO, don’t blame tories for ideologically making poor people poorer…..blame immigrants.
That’s ukip. Ukip are literally tories. That is a fact.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re:

Tories, in Canada must be quite the same as in the UK then. Although I doubt Harper would form a coalition with the NDP (the official opposition which is more left than the Liberal party, although they removed all “socialist” parts to their party constitution) which that creep Cameron did.

But yes those who vote conservative unless in the 1% vote against their interests, that seems a universal rule. Except in Reverseland, er, australia, where the Liberal party is “Conservative”, and there’s no Conservative party.

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