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    Default The Incredible Shrinking Overton Window

    The Overton window is the range of ideas tolerated in public discourse, also known as the window of discourse. The term is named after Joseph P. Overton, who stated that an idea's political viability depends mainly on whether it falls within this range, rather than on politicians' individual preferences.[1][2] According to Overton, the window contains the range of policies that a politician can recommend without appearing too extreme to gain or keep public office in the current climate of public opinion.
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Overton_window

    today an interesting article at https://www.zerohedge.com/political/...overton-window
    Authored by Caitlin Johnstone via Medium.com,

    “The smart way to keep people passive and obedient is to strictly limit the spectrum of acceptable opinion, but allow very lively debate within that spectrum — even encourage the more critical and dissident views. That gives people the sense that there’s free thinking going on, while all the time the presuppositions of the system are being reinforced by the limits put on the range of the debate.”

    ~ Noam Chomsky

    The plutocrat-owned narrative managers of the political/media class work constantly to shrink the Overton window, the spectrum of debate that is considered socially acceptable.They do this by framing more and more debates in terms of how the oligarchic empire should be sustained and supported, steering them away from debates about whether that empire should be permitted to exist at all.

    They get people debating whether there should be some moderate changes made or no meaningful changes at all, rather than the massive, sweeping changes we all know need to be made to the entire system.

    They get people debating whether they should elect a crook in a red hat or a crook in a blue hat, rather than whether or not they should be forced to elect crooks.

    They get people debating violations of government secrecy laws, not whether the government has any business keeping those secrets from its citizenry in the first place.

    They get people debating how internet censorship should take place and whom should be censored, rather than whether any internet censorship should occur.

    They get people debating how and to what extent government surveillance should occur, not whether the government has any business spying on its citizens.

    They get people debating how subservient and compliant someone needs to be in order to not get shot by a police officer, rather than whether a police officer should be shooting people for those reasons at all.

    They get people debating whether or not a group of protesters are sufficiently polite, rather than debating the thing those protesters are demonstrating against.

    They get people debating about whether this thing or that thing is a “conspiracy theory”, rather than discussing the known fact that powerful people conspire.

    They get people debating whether Tulsi Gabbard is a dangerous lunatic, a Russian asset, a Republican asset gearing up for a third party run, or just a harmless Democratic Party crackpot, rather than discussing the fact that her foreign policy would have been considered perfectly normal prior to 9/11.

    They get people debating whether Bernie Sanders is electable or too radical, rather than discussing what it says about the status quo that his extremely modest proposals which every other major country already implements are treated as something outlandish in the United States.

    They get people debating whether Jeremy Corbyn has done enough to address the Labour antisemitism crisis, rather than whether that “crisis” ever existed at all outside of the imaginations of establishment smear merchants.

    They get people debating whether Joe Biden or Elizabeth Warren would win against Trump, rather than whether either of those establishment lackeys is a worthy nominee.

    They get people debating whether politicians should have corporate sponsors, rather than whether corporations should be allowed to interfere in the electoral process at all.

    They get people debating if the US should be pursuing regime change in Iran or Syria, rather than whether the US has any business overthrowing the governments of sovereign nations to begin with.

    They get people debating how many US troops should be in Syria, rather than whether that illegal invasion and occupation was ever legitimate in the first place.

    They get people debating whether to kill people slowly by sanctions or kill them quickly with bombs, rather than whether they should be killed at all.

    They get people debating whether or not some other country’s leader is an evil dictator, rather than whether it’s any of your business.

    They get people debating the extent to which Russia and Trump were involved in the Democratic Party’s 2016 email leaks, rather than the contents of those leaks.

    They get people debating what the response should be to Russian interference in the election, rather than whether that interference took place at all, and whether it would really matter if it did.

    They get people debating how much government support the poor should be allowed to have, rather than whether the rich should be allowed to keep what they’ve stolen from the poor.

    They get people debating what kind of taxes billionaires should have to pay, rather than whether it makes sense for billionaires to exist at all.

    They get people impotently debating the bad things other countries do, rather than the bad things their own country does which they can actually do something about.

    They get people debating what should be done to prevent the rise of China, rather than whether a multipolar world might be beneficial.

    They get people debating whether western cold war escalations against the Russian Federation are sufficient, rather than whether they want the horrors of the cold war to be resurrected in the first place.

    They get people debating what extent cannabis should be decriminalized, rather than whether the government should be allowed to lock anyone up for deciding to put any substance whatsoever in their own body.

    They get people debating whether or not US troops should be withdrawn from Afghanistan, rather than whether or not there should be any US troops outside of the US.

    They get people debating whether or not Julian Assange is “a real journalist”, rather than whether or not they should set legal precedents that necessarily criminalize acts of journalism.

    They get people debating the subtle details of bail protocol, political asylum, embassy cat hygiene and leaking rather than whether it should ever be legal to imprison a publisher for exposing government war crimes.

    They get people debating what the punishment should be for whistleblowers, not what the punishment should be for those they blow the whistle on.

    They get people debating whether Fox or MSNBC is the real “fake news”, rather than whether the entirety of mainstream media is oligarchic propaganda.

    They get people debating about how the things everyone is freaking out over Trump doing were previously done by Obama, rather than discussing why all US presidents do the same evil things regardless of their parties or campaign platforms.

    They get people debating what should be done with money, not whether the concept of money itself is in need of a complete overhaul.

    They get people debating what should be done with government, not whether the concept of government itself is in need of a complete overhaul.

    They get people debating whether the status quo should be reinforced or revised, rather than whether it should be flushed down the toilet where it belongs.

    They get people angrily debating things they can’t change, rather than constructively working on the things that they can.

    They get people shoving against each other in opposite directions, while they swiftly build a cage around us all.

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    Default Re: The Incredible Shrinking Overton Window

    Indeed so, and more to boot--sadly.

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    Default Re: The Incredible Shrinking Overton Window

    So true.
    If we the world could follow the above, the world and civilisation would advance 1000's of years in it's development.

    That is where we should be and what a better world it could be.

    But we would be facing many catastrophes along the way.
    Pushing out those of the old system abusive ways, those with personal power and greed as their main agenda.
    I'm a simple easy going guy that is very upset/sad with the worlds hidden controllers!
    We need LEADERS who bat from the HEART!
    Rise up above them Dark evil doers, not within anger but with LOVE

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    Default Re: The Incredible Shrinking Overton Window

    Yep: professional trolls...

    From Thierry Meyssan, an analysis of the role of blatant fake news in the new propaganda schemes:


    by Thierry Meyssan Voltaire Network
    Damascus (Syria) | 5 November 2019
    For 18 years, we have been debating the strange evolution of the media, which seems to place less and less value on facts. We attribute this phenomenon to their democratization through social networks. It would be because from now on any person can become a journalist, that the quality of information would have collapsed. The right to speak should therefore be reserved for the elites.

    What if it’s exactly the opposite? If the censorship we are considering was not the answer to the phenomenon, but its continuity?

    Sisyphus painfully raises his rock to the top of the mountain of his ambitions, the stone then rolls inexorably down the other side to the underworld. Then he starts this absurd work again.Propaganda

    In political systems where Power needs the participation of the People, the purpose of propaganda is to get as many people as possible to adhere to a particular ideology and to mobilize them to apply it.

    The methods used to convince are the same whether one is acting in good or bad faith. However, in the 20th century, the use of lies and repetition, the elimination of different points of view, and recruitment into mass organizations were first theorized by British MP Charles Masterman, US journalist George Creel and especially German minister Joseph Goebbels with the devastating consequences that we know [1]. This is why, at the end of the two World Wars, the United Nations General Assembly adopted three resolutions condemning the use of deliberate lies in the media to provoke war and enjoining Member States to ensure the free flow of ideas, the only prevention of intoxication [2].

    While propaganda techniques have been perfected over the past 75 years and are systematically used in all international conflicts, they are gradually giving way to new techniques of influence in countries at peace: it is no longer a question of making the public adhere to an ideology and act in the service of power, but on the contrary of dissuading it from intervening, paralysing it.

    This strategy corresponds to a so-called "democratic" organization of society where the public has the capacity to sanction Power, which was rarely the case before.

    It has spread over the past 18 years with the "War on Terror". Many intellectuals have stressed the absurdity of this expression: terrorism is not an enemy, it is a military technique. However, we cannot wage war on war. Even if we did not understand it at the time, the invention of this paradoxical expression was intended to institute the era of post-truth.

    Post-truth
    Let us take the example of the recent execution of Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi. We all know that a helicopter squad cannot fly low across northern Syria without being seen by the population or spotted by Russian air defence systems. The narrative that is told to us is clearly impossible. However, far from questioning what we consider propaganda, we are discussing whether the Caliph, cornered by the US Special Forces, blew himself up with two or three children.

    At other times, we would have agreed that an essential element of this story being impossible, we cannot take seriously the other elements that are before us, starting with the death of the Caliph. Now we think otherwise. We accept that this factual element has been falsified, a priori for reasons of national security, and we consider the rest of the narrative as authentic. In the long run, we will forget our concern with this or other elements and publish encyclopedias that will tell this beautiful story with its most unlikely elements.

    In other words, we instinctively understand that this narrative does not tell facts, but conveys a message. We are therefore not positioning ourselves in the face of the facts, but in the face of the message as we have understood it: as Osama bin Laden, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi was executed; Power remains in the United States of America.

    To move our consciousness from facts to message, speech writers have an obligation to deliver an inconsistent narrative. It is not an unfortunate mistake on their part that is repeated, but a technical requirement of their work.

    In classical propaganda, the aim was to tell coherent stories, if necessary by concealing certain facts or falsifying them. Not anymore. Because we no longer try to convince with beautiful stories, if necessary by getting comfortable with reality. But we are addressing an intermediate state of consciousness through which we convey messages. We are aware that this helicopter affair is impossible, but we can reason by eliminating it from our field of consciousness. A part of our intellect has been inhibited.

    We lie to ourselves.

    We can find a very large number of examples of the use of this packaging technique in recent years. All those I could mention will make most of my readers nervous because each example requires us to recognize that we have been fooled with our own complicity. We hate to have our mistakes pointed out to us.

    A small example anyway. It is ancient, but fundamental. It still plays a vital role today. During the attacks of September 11, airlines immediately published complete boarding lists of passengers and personnel who had died. Two days later, the FBI Director presented his account of the 19 hijackers who, in his opinion, had carried out the attacks. However, none of them, according to the airlines’ first-hand accounts, had boarded the four aircraft. His version is therefore impossible. Eighteen years later, however, we continue to discuss the personalities of these individuals.

    Antidote
    For the past 18 years, we have been told that by offering everyone the ability to express themselves on a blog or social networks, technological progress has devalued public speech. Anyone can say anything. In the past, only politicians and professional journalists had the opportunity to express themselves. They ensured the quality of their interventions and writings. Today the vulgum pecus, the ignorant crowd, takes bladders for lanterns and spreads fake news.

    However, it is exactly the opposite. Leading politicians, starting with President George Bush Jr. and Prime Minister Tony Blair, have assumed inconsistent speeches to inhibit the reactions of the public in general and their constituents in particular. This technique substitutes absurdity for truth as others substituted lies. It has destroyed the functioning of the democratic systems that ordinary people are trying to restore with their means.

    CRT televisions display 625-line images. It suffices that one of them be blurred for us to perceive so it alone in the image. On the same principle, it is enough to hear a single different point of view for the lies of omnipresent propaganda to be obvious. That is why propaganda, when it lies, requires relentless censorship. But if the lie introduces an inconsistency into the discourse so that this inconsistency becomes voluntarily obvious, alternative points of view should no longer be censored. On the contrary, we must let them express themselves and highlight them by publicly denouncing some of them as fake news.

    The antidote to post-truth is not the verification of facts, this has always been the basis of the work of journalists and historians, it is the restoration of logic. This is why a new form of censorship is needed today. Most Facebook users have been logged out at one time or another. In countless cases, users are unable to understand why they have been censored. They search in vain for which prohibited word would have been detected by a computer, or which uncivil position would have been prohibited by a supervisor. In reality, what they are often accused of and arbitrarily sanctioned for is restoring logic to their reasoning.


    Translation Roger Lagassé


    [1] “The techniques of modern military propaganda”, by Thierry Meyssan, Translation Pete Kimberley, Voltaire Network, 18 May 2016.

    [2] “Journalists who engage in war propaganda must be held accountable”, by Thierry Meyssan, Voltaire Network, 16 August 2011.
    Last edited by Hervé; 5th November 2019 at 13:10.
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    Default Re: The Incredible Shrinking Overton Window

    Political commentator Joshua Treviño has postulated that the degrees (stages) of acceptance of public ideas are roughly:
    1. Unthinkable
    2. Radical
    3. Acceptable
    4. Sensible
    5. Popular
    6. Policy
    Me:
    1. Assumed Systematically (Willfully) Ignored
    2. Label it as "Extreme" or "Nuts" or "The Fringe"
    3. Artificial 'Paradigm Change': Plausible, Considering, Imagine
    4. "Makes Sense To Do", Mass Media Promotions & Extensive Suggestive Repeatings
    5. Orchestrated Push via Collectivism, Group Think, Peer Pressure, Mass Indoctrination via MSM Networks
    6. Policy, Unjust (Insane) Laws, Orwellian Dystopian Technocracy
    ~no need2follow anyone only consider to broaden (y)our horizon of possibilities
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    Default Re: The Incredible Shrinking Overton Window

    Shattering The Overton Window

    Authored by Robert Gore via StraightLineLogic.com.

    Aim your rocks at glass houses.

    The Overton window is the range of policies politically acceptable to the mainstream population at a given time. It is also known as the window of discourse. The term is named after Joseph P. Overton, who stated that an idea’s political viability depends mainly on whether it falls within this range, rather than on politicians’ individual preferences. According to Overton, the window frames the range of policies that a politician can recommend without appearing too extreme to gain or keep public office given the climate of public opinion at that time.

    Heaven forbid anyone appear too extreme. Our rulers keep discourse safely within the Overton window by allowing debate about the details of what the government does or doesn’t do. However, those who question the necessity of particular government agencies or programs, or government in general, are beyond-the-pale extremists and cast into the Abyss of the Unacceptable, one zip code over from the Abyss of the Deplorable.

    The Federal Reserve has been much in the news lately. The term “repo” is shorthand for a repurchase agreement. The repo market allows those who own securities to sell them to lenders and repurchase them on a set day at a higher price. The difference between the sale and the repurchase price is interest to the lender. The repo market is huge, providing short-term financing for hundreds of billions of dollars worth of transactions daily, primarily in government and agency debt.

    On September 16 the repo market blew up. Short term repos usually carrying interest rates of 1 or 2 percent required rates approaching 10 percent for the market to clear. The Fed stepped in, offering massive fiat credit to push rates back down. It wasn’t just a one-time glitch. Since then, the repo market has required substantial and repeated injections of Fed fiat credit. The Fed has announced injections totaling close to half-a-trillion dollars, or $500 billion, over the next few weeks to prevent the market from seizing up over year-end, when demand for repo financing is traditionally brisk. That will take the Fed’s balance sheet to around $4.5 trillion, the high reached after the last financial crisis.

    There are plenty of articles about the causes of the blowup and its implications and SLL has reposted some of them. Not alone among commentators, SLL’s best guess is that markets are seizing up under massive and ever-expanding US government debt. Unless the Fed buys what nobody else wants, the market will crash and rates will skyrocket. Time will tell. Without getting further into those weeds, the incident follows a pattern inherent in any government-central bank sponsored system of fiat credit creation.

    Credit expands faster than underlying economic production until interest and principal can no longer be paid and credit begins to contract. Governments and central banks meet that inevitable consequence with a still greater expansion of fiat credit, setting the stage for the next contraction and expansion. How successful governments and central banks are in forestalling economic and financial catastrophe is merely a detail. The important point is that the cycle, each successive crisis larger than the previous one, is a feature, not a bug, of fiat credit systems. Eventually they all crash.

    Will the repo market be the tipping point for the next credit contraction? Apparently it already is, judging by the Fed’s frantic response. However, focusing on the details keeps the debate within the Overton window. Instead, ignore the details and look at the destruction wrought by the fiat credit system since inception. The dollar is worth about 2 percent of what it was in 1913 when the Fed was created. The Fed has amplified rather than damped economic fluctuations (for a masterful exposition of the destructiveness of US, European, and Japanese central banks the last several decades, see “The Japanization of the European Union,” Jesús Huerta de Soto, SLL, 12/13/19). Which prompts the Overton window-shattering question: why do we need central banks in the first place? The Overton window-shattering answer: we don’t.

    We’re not yet to the point where shattering questions are asked about central banks or other government or government-aligned institution, but we’re well into stage one: the realization that the status quo is not working for anyone but a small sliver of the population. Stage two has also launched: recognition that promoters of the status quo lie incessantly. So too has stage three: things keep getting worse.

    The lying is incessant. The Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons’ (OPCW) official conclusions about an alleged chlorine attack in Douma, Syria were unsupported by the evidence and several OPCW investigators raised unaddressed objections at the time. The findings were skewed to support propaganda justifying retaliatory airstrikes by the US, UK, and France. Justice Department Inspector General Michael Horowitz’s report detailed the FBI’s lies and deliberate omissions of exculpatory material to the FISA court. The Washington Post recently published what are being called the Afghanistan Papers, culled from a trove of Freedom of Information Act releases. Numerous military and civilian officials lied about America’s eighteen-year and counting war in Afghanistan from its inception.

    This is a couple of weeks’ disclosures concerning official prevarication. The OPCW story hasn’t received much coverage in the mainstream media, while the IG report and the Afghanistan Papers have. They’re the tip of the iceberg. While more people are seeing the iceberg that’s above the water line, the Overton window and pervasive official secrecy still obscures the much larger part floating below the surface.

    It probably doesn’t matter. There is one bedrock truth about governments: they are based on coercion, violence, and fraud. It’s easy to mistake lack of public reaction to stories like the above for insouciance or mental sloth, but many people have internalized that governments repeatedly lie, they don’t need the details. They don’t have time to follow all the stories or to speak out and protest the undeniable lies and injustices—they have lives to lead. There are often nasty reprisals for those who speak out or protest, and they know that, too. But an ever-increasing percentage of the populace know in their bones that contemporary governance is rotten to its evil core. Whatever trust that once existed between government and the governed is long gone and it’s not coming back.

    What visibly agitates people are officially promoted issues and the attendant propaganda when they clearly see the effects on own their lives and well-being. Donald Trump rode immigration to the White House, astounding legions of pundits and self-proclaimed experts who endlessly assured us that illegal immigrants don’t take jobs, commit crimes disproportionate to their numbers, run drugs, or soak up welfare-state benefits. The unwashed masses rejected the assurances in favor of their own experience and knowledge.

    Once a person or institution loses trust, propaganda and “explanations” only increase skepticism and cynicism. The crowd promoting anthropogenic, apocalyptic global warming climate change is the same one that’s promoted open immigration, welfare and warfare states, and central banking, among other follies. Climate change is nothing more than a Trojan horse for more coercion, command, and control, ultimately leading to global government.

    The “deniers” reject the supposedly settled science. Science is never settled, there are only hypotheses that offer more explanatory and predictive power than previous hypotheses. Nobody listens to messages from messengers they don’t trust, and resorting to hysterically hectoring harpies doesn’t help the cause. AOC can take care of herself, but using a sixteen-year-old stooge is particularly reprehensible. Patriotism was once the last refuges of scoundrels, now it’s “the children” (see Clinton, Hillary, It Takes a Village: And Other Lessons Children Teach Us, 1996, Simon & Schuster).

    The 1910-1920 decade kicked off the long bull market in government.
    • In the US, we got the Federal Reserve, the income tax, direct election of senators, and Prohibition.
    • The world got World War I and the Treaty of Versailles, the Middle East sliced up into European satrapies, the Bolshevik Revolution, and the Spanish Flu.
    The next hundred years was a montage of government-sponsored horrors: the Great Depression, World War II, tyrannical dictatorships, mass slaughter, nuclear weaponry, terrorism, environmental degradation, the American military-industrial-intelligence-media-academic complex, and an unprecedented explosion of debt to pay for it all. Yet, after the bloodiest century in human history, in which governments killed an estimated 100 to 200 million people not counting the wars, questioning the legitimacy and necessity of governments is still outside the Overton window.

    Arctic blasts of reality are set to shatter that window and freeze all those who believed its double panes would protect them. It’s necessary because the current system is never going to improve itself. Only a full demonstration of the horrors of the old and unimproved will open people’s minds to the possibility of something different, something new and improved. Stage four is system collapse and we’re on the cusp. It will be the direct result of the last century’s follies and will spell the end of the bull market in government.

    The widespread dissatisfaction with the way things are, even before collapse, portends something much more ominous ahead. Brexit, Trump, Catalonia, Hong Kong, the Yellow Vests, and the other protests and unrest are relatively minor perturbations. Reform and separation are their predominant themes, not rebellion and overthrow. Reform, unfortunately, is impossible; entrenched elites’ money and power flow from the corruption. Separation and secession are the last, best hope for any kind of semi-peaceful resolution of the tensions besetting the world.

    The Civil War was fought to preserve the federal government’s control of the states. The Overton window puts beyond question that the Civil War permanently vanquished all consideration of secession. However, the centrifugal forces of decentralization and devolution are waxing. Eventually they will hurl present political arrangements against the wall. Doesn’t some sort of peaceful breakup make more sense than an inevitably bloody and doomed effort to preserve the unwieldy dominion of the corrupt, parasitic, and bankrupt federal government?

    For those of us bent on upending present political arrangements, it’s more logical to lay claim to part of the country as the US splats against the wall than to try and reconstitute a government to govern the sprawling American land mass, and a disparate and ideologically incompatible population of 330 million. Part of something is better than all of nothing. Texit or Appalachexit would be far easier than restoring a Constitutional republic to the whole of the United States. And there’s a tactical advantage to advocating for peaceful secession rather than violent revolt: the former won’t get you thrown in jail—yet, unless you’re in Catalonia or China—the latter might.

    Let those who want to remain safely within the Overton window have their welfare and warfare state, their central bank, their faltering empire, and their domination by parasitic government. Let the rest of us discover freedom, true peace, and self-sovereignty in one or more breakaway provinces.

    Surely if these outside-the-window notions are merely crackpot fantasies our efforts will fail and we’ll come skulking back, recognizing Washington as our one true master and begging for reunification. And if our efforts succeed? That’s stage five, a prospect we’re not to supposed to think of, dream about, or strive for, the stuff of our rulers’ nightmares. It’s why they installed the Overton window in the first place.
    Last edited by Bill Ryan; 28th December 2019 at 20:32. Reason: added paragraph breaks for easier reading of this very interesting article

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    Default Re: The Incredible Shrinking Overton Window

    This piece sums it all up nicely. Unfortunately, it will fall on deaf ears and dumbed-down minds.

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    Default Re: The Incredible Shrinking Overton Window

    From what I see, the Overton window is related to the idea that, usually, the most centrist candidate wins. So the discussions become what the mainstream population wants. Elizabeth Warren, Bernie Sanders and AOC are fading. Too radical for most people, especially the independents. Most interesting here is that the constant propaganda message that socialism is acceptable has convinced a large segment of under 30's. The Overton window reflects people's desire for stability and preserving the status quo. And a way for the rich bastards to control the discussion.

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