Please can I recommend this article by Theodore Dalrymple on the Takimag site as excellent, thought-provoking reading. It begins:
'Walking through Amsterdam recently, a paradox that I had long noticed in an inchoate way formulated itself clearly in my mind. It was this: A century ago, there would have been one clothes shop for every hundred well-dressed people. Nowadays there is one well-dressed person (if that) for every hundred clothes shops. What accounts for this strange reversal of ratios?