The Overton window of political possibility is the concept that there are a limited range of ideas the public is willing to consider and accept….
Politicians can only be effective by advocating policy that fits within the Overton window … Disruptive groups are the ones who can expand or contract the Overton window.
In the case of COVID-19, the use of the noble lie has been used by government and world health officials as well as legacy media sycophants to restrict and even close the Overton window regarding issues such as mask use, vaccination strategies, and lockdowns. To be explicitly clear, the Overton Window is a political concept which is being actively manipulated to constrain scientific discourse.
Seen it all before, in climate change (née global warming).
Government officials are intentionally acting as those disruptive groups which limit the window by co-opting media outlets, social media and big tech through NGOs, The Trusted News Initiative and three letter agencies.
Through NIH media campaigns, Dr. Anthony Fauci, Dr. Francis Collins and many others have acted to limit or close the Overton Window. They have also effectively used smear campaigns both against groups and individuals to limit the Overton Window and keep their policy positions from being questioned by the public and to expand governmental authority.
There is now a deep understanding of the political science behind the Overton Window, and the idea is being used to market ideas to the public in ways never thought of before by governmental organizations and agencies. …
Fauci began the vaccine campaign stating that it would require 60% of the population to be vaccinated to achieve herd immunity. He consistently nudged up the percentage of people required to be vaccinated to achieve what he calls herd immunity. He started at 60%, then went to 70%, 85% , 90% and finally over 100% vaccinated with boosters. Long after it was clear that the virus would be endemic, he was still advocating for herd immunity to push for vaccines, vaccines for children and vaccines mandates.
As the concept of the Overton Window has become embedded in our political sphere and public discourse, the ability of governments to manipulate the Overton window has become normalized. The use of big tech, social media and MSM by governments to control the Overton window is now a standard pattern of behavior. …
Omicron is the disruptive event that has expanded the Overton window:
The new variant of COVID-19, Omicron, has exploded onto the scene. This variant is different in five essential ways:
- More infectious and will soon be the dominant variant in the USA
- Less pathogenic
- Poorly matched to currently available vaccines
- Natural immunity is providing good protection against Omicron
- Disease symptoms are more similar to the common cold
As some governments are now touting a 3rd, 4th or even 5th booster as mandatory, various groups, influencers and even the WHO to some extent — including main stream media outlets — are beginning to question the whole public policy response in the face of the emerging data about Omicron.
Suddenly, some of the data exposing that these vaccines are not as safe and effective as once thought are showing up on places like Twitter and Linked-in and the posts aren’t being removed (ergo, overtly censored). The WHO is questioning the need for universal vaccination and boosters, even suggesting the boosters may “prolong” COVID. Even some main stream media outlets, such as Real Clear Politics are promoting articles that are outside of the BBC-led “Trusted News Initiative” narrative.
In the meantime, President Biden is working hard to limit the what the public believes by promoting the meme that the unvaccinated will face a “winter of severe illness and death.” Unfortunately for him, he forgot to follow the “Overton Golden Rule” — politicians can only detect the Overton window, and cannot act to contract or expand it. So in this case, public response to his pronouncement about a winter of severe illness and death was met with derision by many.
The expectation of a contest of ideas is so old fashioned and quaint, because the thugs controlling public discourse and pushing the narrative are so overt now.
hat-tip Scott of the Pacific, Stephen Neil