#UKIP Myth 1: #Common Sense

Our dear old local UKIP candidate John Stocker is still talking about Common Sense with every breath, just as he was in 2010.

The Gentleman Businessman

‘The Gentleman Businessman’ by Asbjorn Gundersen in Adventures in Tory Land http://amzn.to/1GpXY1F

I have to admit I use it myself quite a lot, usually snootily (shame) about parents who ‘have no common sense’. Why don’t they use some common sense? etc.

But I mean something different from John Stocker. I mean, ‘It didn’t work last time so why are they doing it again?’ ‘So and so NEVER does X, so why do they keep banking on their kid doing something he/she never does actually do?’

Yes I know I’m being obnoxious but at least I’m rational. When I talk about common sense, I’m talking about using past evidence as a guide to one’s plans, one’s ‘policies’. I’m asking for evidence-based policy.

But Stocker means something else. Common sense for Stocker means taking his daily life as a paradigm, and assuming that his personal experiences in his life will be a good guide for an entire nation’s policies. This is not evidence-based, because he doesn’t present evidence that a nation is the same as a household – the same as his household.

Nations are more complicated than households – which are complicated enough! I want policies based on what nations and governments have done and experienced, not on what J Stocker has done, even though I know he has lived an interesting and varied life. So I’m afraid there have to be some experts in there, such as economists, preferably arguing with each other, and public health researchers, dare I say it a sociologist or two….

Thomas Paine's pamphlet 'Common Sense' 1775 advocating American independence

Thomas Paine’s pamphlet ‘Common Sense’ 1775 advocating American independence

Adventures in Tory Land: Democracy in Middle England, tales of the canvassing trail, is available as an ebook and paperback through Amazon and in Waterstones St Albans. Yours for £2. For a laugh, click here! http://amzn.to/1GpXY1F

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