This party present perhaps the biggest problem for those deciding who to vote for. Its not that anyone with half a brain-cell thinks that a UKIP government would be a good thing, its that in many ways their local candidate selection processes epitomise localism - as far as I can tell all you have to do is fill in a form and you're a candidate. How else can you explain the fact that no two UKIP candidates seem to have the same policies, on nearly anything?
But that means that its perfectly feasible for a UKIP candidate to be spot on with regard to cycling. Possible, if perhaps not very likely.
Now I've got to go as far as East Chesterton to see the nearest UKIP candidate who responded to Cambridge Cycling Campaigns questions, a Peter Burkinshaw. Quite a tough ward for UKIP that one - Ian Manning vs. Clare Blare is the fight we'll all be watching, it's looking like a LibDem - Labour battle. Manning ain't a bad chap and has a good record as a councillor, but as you know the Liberal Democrats are about as popular as the clap in a boarding school. UKIP usually get squeezed out - for me the question is whether thats because of the party or the candidate. Lets look see how he answered the questions...
Now, on the subject of cycle provision in and around new developments:
You are asking for benefits paid for by other road users.Gosh. Okay... So he doesn't understand how the roads are paid for? We have to assume these candidates are being genuine, so for the moment at least lets assume he isn't taking the p1$$.
I would prefer more car parks.
On to the key (for me) question of evidence based policing:
Cyclists are by far the most undisciplined road users.
On several occasions, I have had to stop or dodge cyclists riding through red lights when
crossing at pedestrian crossings. More police attention to cyclists would be useful.
Cars are not a danger to other road users, provided they in turn act sensibly.
It should be borne in mind that motorists have to pass a driving test. Cyclists are not tested for competence or knowledge of road signs and traffic lights.
So, no. He doesn't support evidence based policing, he supports policing based on his own prejudice. Show him data that demonstrates few harmed by bikes and hundreds harmed by cars, and he doesn't care - he's had to dodge cyclists you know, bloody cyclists coming over here ruining our country, bugger off back to Bikeland or wherever the hell you come from. I don't know, youth of today, wasn't like that when I were a lad. You could tear down the roads at whatever pace you like, they knew their place then you know, these uppity cylists. Now they want jobs, houses, the right to vote, bloody cyclists.
Is the stuff Bozza is doing for cyclists any good? Would he do it here? Do we even have to ask?
No. This proposal amounts to theft from the people who pay to use roads and the benefit given to those who don't.
Oh, of course. Because there's a road tax which goes into the road fund, and anyone who says otherwise is just some namby pamby weirdy beardy yoghurt knitting liberal who wants to steal from hard working, oppressed motorists and spend the money herding lentils into their yurts.
Now you could be temtped to give up on his ranting right about now. Don't, you'll miss some comedy gold. I mean, put this in context; this was a survey done by Cambridge Cycling Campaign to help those who look at their site (more cyclists) decide who to vote for. This candidate has been so staggeringly dumb as to insult those people - he hasn't even tried to sugar the cyclist-hating pill he's trying to ram down our throats.
We've then got assorted 'cyclists don't pay' kind of comments so why should we get facilities, a vow that nothing should be done on Orchard Park to fix badly linked up facilities that won't even cost the County Council anything (this is just spite!), an insistence that the Milton Road shared use facility is okay if cyclists stick to their half (much of this route doesn't have 'halves' and isn't segregated in any way; thats why its called 'shared use' Mr. Burkinshaw... The clue is in the name. Do you see what they did there? 'Shared' use?). He answers a question about the Green Dragon bridge with anecdotes about cyclists abusing him on another bridge entirely (I'm increasingly thinking they're abusing him because they know who he is - its not general abuse he's getting from idiotic cyclists for being in the way, I think people might know who he is and they're being highly specific in their insults), before closing with this absolute corker:
Why are there cycle tracks on Hill's road on both the road and footpath?
Road space is required for motorised vehicles who pay for it. It shouldn't be wasted on people who don't.
Just for your information, I walk to most places in Cambridge, but you should bear in mind that if everybody cycled, there would be no roads to ride on.
What is "sustainable transport"? Is it using things that other people pay for?
It transpires that Mr. Burkinshaw is wrong in every possible way. There are cycle tracks on Hills Road on the road and the footpath because for reasons best known to the County Council designing one high quality facility is too hard, they'd rather give us two poor ones. Road space isn't paid for by motorised vehicles; such things are inert lumps of metal that pay nothing. Road space is paid for mostly via council tax, which we all pay. VED covers fuel efficicney; if you don't want to pay it get a Prius or a Nissan Leaf or any of the other low emission vehicles. Roads were not built for cars. Sustainable transport is using things you've paid for but doing less damage to the local and global environments...
Wow. This guy has set out to alienate half of the population of the city - the half that regularly cycle. He's got half the potential electorate he might have had - he's going to lose. This has made local news, its had national comment. I was talking to a proud UKIP supporter from well outside that ward (from Milton in fact) who has stated that he'll never vote UKIP again after this. Mr. Burkinshaw, your frothing at the mouth, misinformed cyclist hate has ballsed this up for you. You. Are. Going. To. Lose. Why would anyone seek to make absolutely sure they can't win?
I was going to say 'lets not be too harsh on UKIP, look, here's their nominee for Gamlingay who is like a breath of fresh air' but Mr. Burkinshaws comments are so stupid that I feel like I've had myIQ beaten down by a mallet and I don't believe that UKIP deserve further coverage.
In conclusion, I flat out don't care which ward you're in - a vote for UKIP is a vote for the party that provided a platform for Mr. Burkinshaw. Vote Tory, LibDem, Labour, Green, even Loony if you're in Bar Hill, vote anyone but UKIP.
When you put a cross in the UKIP box, angels weep for you. Their kind of stupidity is infectious - like head lice or the zombie apocalypse plague. Don't catch it.