“A good newspaper man sticks out the neck whenever there is need to.”
Imagine a Harry Potter world where the muggles not only knew magicians existed but feared and hated them.
“It had taken the orderly mind which science had drummed into the human race to make [paranormal kinetics] finally work.”
As usual, lots of preaching. Simak’s stuff may have been cutting edge half a century ago but it boring now. Unlike however many modern SF writers, he managed to get the science right so the story is not glaringly dated by the sea change in technology since. (Do you know what a “lunch pail” is?)
“A good idea to have a line of retreat laid out.”
Premise: man is trapped. Simak’s essentially correct, man is trapped on earth. Decades of science fiction notwithstanding, humans will never walk freely on the Moon nor Mars even if they were terraformed to earth-likeness because both lack a magnetosphere. The radiation would eventually kill all exposed life. The same applies for travel (at non-relativistic speeds). We’re trapped (for now).
“The finger of God stretched out to touch your heart.”