The Spectator

In defence of e-bikes

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Identity politics

Sir: Your lead article (‘On board’, 12 August) highlights numerous issues related to refugees, but does not offer much in regard to why this country is a magnet for economic migrants. You state that this is a rich country. How can this be the case when government debt is 100 per cent of GDP? Further, when we cannot provide adequate services in healthcare, education and housing, why should we take in migrants who cannot make an immediate contribution to the country’s tax base?

The reasons that this country is so attractive are, firstly, the English language, which we can’t do much about. Secondly, we have an easily accessible benefits system, including healthcare. And most importantly, there is no need to carry an identity document, making it possible to disappear into the informal economy. The civil rights brigade complain about the need to carry a card; but if you have a passport or a driving licence you are already in the system. It would be quick, easy and cheap to issue cards to at least half the population. 

Lindsay Jamieson

Sherborne, Dorset

Protect and survive

Sir: William Moore summed up the attempts by the left, the Welsh and Scottish governments, the RSPB, Natural England and people such as Chris Packham and the fawning National Trust and United Utilities in bringing their ‘values’ to the countryside (‘Bad sports’, 12 August). Packham – who has the grandstand given to him by the BBC and hopes to be the next David Attenborough – runs a very slick campaign called Wild Justice. Its intention is to destroy country sport and a way of life for many that is unknown to the vast majority of people because we are an urban society. 

The evidence that grouse moors are successful in conserving curlew, lapwings, merlin, hen harriers and other species – and that game shoots help native birds over the winter – is overwhelming.

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