“Modernity has brought great comforts and freedoms, but it brutishly smashes down, too. The Internet (and this recession) is destroying fine old local papers. Higher booze prices and the smoking ban are destroying pubs. Similarly, we all know how hard the world of Amazon and Google has hit the small bookshop. Life without papers and pubs is an intolerable prospect. Would there be any point in leaving home at all if bookshops went too?”–Andrew Marr in a Sunday Observer piece headlined, “How intolerable life would be without books and bookshops.”

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