Marshall McLuhan

If it works, it’s Obsolete

CBC TV – Take 30 (Program) – McLuhan predicts ‘world connectivity’ 1965

Marshall McLuhan on the media

Video Playlist:

Quotations are copyright © 1986, McLuhan Associates, Ltd.

  • The story of modern America begins With the discovery of the white man by The Indians.
  • Only puny secrets need protection. Big discoveries are protected by public incredulity.
  • Whereas convictions depend on speed-ups, justice requires delay.
  • The nature of people demands that most of them be engaged in the most frivolous possible activities—like making money.
  • With telephone and TV it is not so much the message as the sender that is “sent.”
  • Money is the poor man’s credit card.
  • We look at the present through a rear-view mirror. We march backwards into the future.
  • Spaceship earth is still operated by railway conductors, just as NASA is managed by men with Newtonian goals.
  • Invention is the mother of necessities.
  • You mean my whole fallacy’s wrong?
  • Mud sometimes gives the illusion of depth.
  • The car has become the carapace, the protective and aggressive shell, of urban and suburban man.
  • Why is it so easy to acquire the solutions of past problems and so difficult to solve current ones?
  • The trouble with a cheap, specialized education is that you never stop paying for it.
  • People don’t actually read newspapers. They step into them every morning like a hot bath.
  • The road is our major architectural form.
  • Today each of us lives several hundred years in a decade.
  • Today the business of business is becoming the constant invention of new business.
  • The price of eternal vigilance is indifference.
  • News, far more than art, is artifact.
  • When you are on the phone or on the air, you have no body. <!–
  • Tomorrow is our permanent address.
  • –>
  • All advertising advertises advertising.
  • The answers are always inside the problem, not outside.
  • “Camp” is popular because it gives people a sense of reality to see a replay of their lives.
  • This information is top security. When you have read it, destroy yourself.
  • The specialist is one who never makes small mistakes while moving toward the grand fallacy.
  • One of the nicest things about being big is the luxury of thinking little.
  • Politics offers yesterday’s answers to today’s questions.
  • The missing link created far more interest than all the chains and explanations of being.
  • In big industry new ideas are invited to rear their heads so they can be clobbered at once. The idea department of a big firm is a sort of lab for isolating dangerous viruses.
  • When a thing is current, it creates currency.
  • Food for the mind is like food for the body: the inputs are never the same as the outputs.
  • Men on frontiers, whether of time or space, abandon their previous identities. Neighbourhood gives identity. Frontiers snatch it away.
  • The future of the book is the blurb.
  • The ignorance of how to use new knowledge stockpiles exponentially.
  • A road is a flattened-out wheel, rolled up in the belly of an airplane.
  • At the speed of light, policies and political parties yield place to charismatic images.
  • “I may be wrong, but I’m never in doubt.”

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