A few days ago I went to Belfast for the first time for several months, and was surprised to find the number of men women and children, from Eastern European countries, who were begging in the street. When you consider our Northern Ireland history, and the fact that we are an outpost of the UK, it gives some guide to the number of immigrants residing in Britain today. I draw your attention to a piece I wrote a long time ago entitled Beef Dripping, in which I tell a true story of a Water Board official who found that a row of houses that he wished to enter were owned by a man and wife, she sold iron holders, while he sang, outside Woolworths in Balham High Road. I have since been very sceptical of the needs of those who beg. What is more, I fail to understand, if the purpose of the immigrants is to swell our workforce, how and why are these people allowed to beg in the street?
My grandmother had a phrase ‘over egging it’ which implied excess in some form or another. I believe the current government is over egging the supply of identity cards, for its own purposes, and dragging its feet at the same time because it knows its proposition is unpopular. In ’39 we were all issued with identity cards and gas masks at the cost to the Exchequer. Now it is suggested that we are to be forced to have identity cards with a vast amount of personal information on them, at our own expense. The fact that we require identity cards nowadays is patent, but their purpose should surely be for identity verification, not every function that the government can slap on to them, and because it is a national need, they should be free of cost to the individual. If we need to have a card with personal information other than our identity, then we can obtain that at our own cost. As the immigrant situation and crime in this country are both now at a serious level, identity cards are clearly essential to help clamp down on illegal entry and crime of every sort, The Banks are always begging us to take out more cards, perhaps they could supply the other cards free of charge, with the additional information the government wishes us to carry.
The obvious corollary from discussing this burgeoning immigrant problem, is the effect on housing. If we’re having hundreds or thousands of people every month entering this country, they have to be housed somewhere. We are told that we need them to fill vacancies in our workforce. Clearly this is at the expense of those young people trying to get on the housing ladder, and either failing to, or being forced to undertake swingeing mortgages, rising in value daily, just to find somewhere to live. This is heinous. Like the penal system, the government does not apply cause and effect to the way it governs. I understand that it is currently possible to buy a house, do nothing to it, and in a month or so, resell it at a considerable profit. It doesn’t take the mind of an Einstein to assess that this is totally wrong, and that something should be done about it, to halt this incredible escalation in house pricing.