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Leith on life: Libertarianism in the playground

What would Isaiah Berlin have made of the soft play centre?

By Sam Leith  

The scene in Little Dinosaurs was an ugly one. The scene in Little Dinosaurs, to be fair, is always a pretty ugly one: it’s a “soft-play” centre—a well-padded indoor-adventure playground cum climbing frame through which north London’s most energetic under-sixes bound and romp and shriek while their dispirited parents sip milky coffees and listen out for the siren-wail of minor injury.

Ordinarily, such shouting as there is is directed at members of the pre-school community. But on this occasion, it was mother-to-mother, and the vehemence of the altercation was enough to blow spume off the top of my cappuccino. Mother…

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