Friday, February 4, 2011

Save our Public Libraries!

Over 450 public libraries in England are threatened with closure.
Details about tomorrow's Save Our Libraries day can be found here.

Please join the day of protest in defence of public libraries and join the fightback against market fundamentalism!

Market fundamentalism, this madness that's infected the human race, is like a greedy ghost that haunts the boardrooms and council chambers and committee rooms from which the world is run these days. The greedy ghost understands profit all right. But that's all. What he doesn't understand is enterprises that don't make a profit, because they're set up to do something different. He doesn't understand libraries at all, for instance.

Like all fundamentalists who get their clammy hands on the levers of power, the market fanatics are going to kill off every humane, life-enhancing, generous, imaginative and decent corner of our public life. We're coming to see that old Karl Marx had his finger on the heart of the matter when he pointed out that the market in the end will destroy everything we thought was safe and solid. "Everything solid melts into air," he said. "All that is holy is profaned."

You can read the whole of author Philip Pullman's wonderful speech in defence of public libraries here. An abridged version also appears in The Guardian.

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