The saga of podcaster extraordinaire Joe Rogan and the music/audio platform Spotify took a predictably nasty turn last week. There ought to be consequences, and Rogan should blow up the status quo.
Not that I want to tell Joe Rogan his business. He’s built an audience of some 11 million people per podcast episode, and he’s done it with a format most people wouldn’t expect. Rogan does interviews that can last three or four hours, well past the time frame most experts would say is marketable. And he’s done it without focusing on any subject in particular.
Rogan’s show will cover virtually everything under the sun — politics, media, healthcare, fitness, comedy, and more. In one hilarious episode, Rogan had a talking sex doll on the show and his freakout level went off the charts. What makes Joe Rogan interesting is that he’s curious and he doesn’t limit himself. He’ll ask questions, and he’ll examine every premise.
The Powers That Be among our utterly brainless, atrociously evil ruling class don’t like Joe Rogan. They don’t like him because he’ll ask those questions. This came to a head when Rogan had two medical experts, Drs. Peter McCullough and Robert Malone, on as guests in December and January. McCullough and Malone offered devastating indictments of the official/ruling-class narrative of COVID-19, presenting fact-filled reasoning to cast extreme doubt on virtually everything you’re supposed to believe about the virus.
The McCullough interview can be found on Rumble here. The Malone interview is here. Rumble doesn’t take down discussions of COVID in which a point of view that differs from that of the known liars Anthony Fauci and Jen Psaki can be found.
Rogan’s point of view on COVID, that he’s not impressed with the ruling-class narrative and is willing to give an airing to dissidents like McCullough and Malone, which other less successful media outlets will not, comes from personal experience. Last year, when Rogan caught the virus and treated it with, among other things, ivermectin, he was vilified as a crank and a fabulist by several media outlets including the failed sexual escapade venue disguised as a cable news channel called CNN. That channel’s hosts attacked Rogan for treating COVID with “horse dewormer,” a staggeringly irresponsible characterization of a drug whose inventors won a Nobel Prize for medicine for its properties as applied to humans and which has been prescribed millions upon millions of times around the world for all kinds of ailments.
More than 50 studies have shown the drug to have positive effects in reducing symptoms or aiding recovery for COVID patients, but the National Institutes of Health says there is not enough data to recommend it as a treatment for COVID.
You already know all this. You also already know that when CNN’s in-house medical expert Sanjay Gupta, who had sat by and allowed the channel’s idiot hosts to characterize ivermectin as snake oil on air, was humiliated when he was a guest on Rogan’s podcast. Rogan forced Gupta to admit the statements of CNN talking clowns like Brian Stelter and Don Lemon about “horse dewormer” were lies.
Having been defamed by the ruling class’ media outlets, and aware of the fact he’s drawing more than 10 times CNN’s audience, Rogan decided he was free to pursue the truth any damn way he pleased.
But after the Malone interview went viral, it was taken down by YouTube. And members of the Biden administration began openly discussing the need to deplatform and cancel Joe Rogan. That began the frenzy which is now spiraling out of control.
Rogan started getting heat from Spotify, the podcast and music platform on which his show rests and with whom he has a four-year $100 million contract. Assumedly at Spotify’s urging, he issued a half-apology for his COVID heterodoxy, which was a mistake.
This happened as a number of washed-up recording artists from the 1960s and 1970s whom nobody thinks are relevant anymore, among them Neil Young and Joni Mitchell, took the meaningless and virtue-signaling step of demanding Spotify pull their music off its platform if Rogan were to remain.
Spotify did. Most of America chuckled at the stupid wokeness of a Neil Young. A southern man don’t need him around anyhow, after all.
But the woke mob smelled blood. Before you knew it, Spotify was quietly taking down archived Rogan podcasts where sensitive content was discussed. This supposedly was done at Rogan’s behest — you can believe that, or not.
And then things got truly ugly.
Woke mobsters scoured old Rogan podcasts and found instances where he had said the “N-word.” Never once had he called anyone that, but he’d used it — either quoting others or using the word in various contexts where you’d otherwise say “N-word.” Rogan thought, not surprisingly as a truth-seeker and a stout defender of the First Amendment, that using the word rather than dancing around it would be a way to take a stand for free expression.
But now there’s a montage making the rounds of the internet with Rogan saying it, and supposedly that’s evidence that Joe Rogan is a racist. He’s being held up to a level of scrutiny no human could withstand without damage, and the cancel mob is out for Joe Rogan.
What’s worst about this is something Rogan acknowledged in a second apology he issued, which was another mistake — you never, ever apologize to the woke mob. Rogan’s simple use of the word as a person of pallor, regardless of context, is verboten, and in his apology, he claimed that was correct.
It is not.
The N-word is absolutely ubiquitous in mainstream media, so long as black people are using it. Nobody is saying it’s OK to use it as a racial slur, but the idea that one group of people can use a word with alacrity and other groups of people are forbidden is absurd in what’s supposed to be a free country. Either everybody is afforded full use of the English language or nobody is; otherwise, we are neither colorblind nor free.
But absurd or not, they’re calling for Joe Rogan to be canceled. He questions the official narrative on COVID, and he took liberties with the pious shibboleths of the Woke. For shame!
There’s a problem, though. Which is that Rogan is worth every dime of that $100 million Spotify is paying him. Nobody else in the podcasting/talk radio/talk TV is generating an audience of 11 million like Rogan is. Tucker Carlson is next and he’s not quite 3 million people on his best day.
Spotify ought to be defending Joe Rogan to the hilt and taking a stand for free speech, and Spotify ought to be scolding some of these washed-up clowns attempting to stoke a crisis in order to recover some relevance by informing them that, were the standards applied to Rogan applied to them, Spotify might have to take down their content as offensive, too. The music industry has been a place where the envelope of decency has been pushed over and over again, after all.
But that isn’t what happened. In a letter to Spotify employees, CEO Daniel Ek attempted to throw Rogan under the bus while hanging on to that audience. He apologized to Spotify’s workers for things Joe Rogan said years ago in contexts that were not outwardly offensive, but said this:
“While I strongly condemn what Joe has said and I agree with his decision to remove past episodes from our platform, I realize some will want more. And I want to make one point very clear – I do not believe that silencing Joe is the answer.”
“We should have clear lines around content and take action when they are crossed, but canceling voices is a slippery slope. Looking at the issue more broadly, it’s critical thinking and open debate that powers real and necessary progress.”
And on Monday, Rumble CEO Chris Pavlovski sent Rogan an open letter offering to match the four-year, $100 million deal he has with Spotify to host his entire catalog with zero censorship.
Rogan ought to use this as leverage against Spotify. His position ought to be that the whole catalog of Rogan podcasts goes back up at Spotify and a public commitment to free speech without censorship or cancel-culture deplatforming be Spotify’s position going forward, or else he’s gone.
Should Joe Rogan host his podcasts at Rumble, that platform would instantly become a top-tier web destination (Rumble isn’t far off the pace; as of last month it was up to 39 million monthly active users) and it would change the game significantly. We’ve already seen Rumble’s commitment to freedom, and not just due to the volume of uncensored content which appears there. Over the weekend, when GoFundMe attempted to steal some $9 million in funds donated to support the Freedom Convoy trucker protest in Canada, a Christian crowdfunding platform called GiveSendGo stepped forward to host the fundraiser and immediately was hit with denial-of-service hacks and server issues. Rumble jumped in to offer GiveSendGo server space and engineering support.
Unless lovers of freedom band together and provide a liberty economy capable of standing on its own, abuses like GoFundMe’s cancellation of the truckers and Spotify’s selling-out of Rogan will only continue.
There is just one way to stop a bully. It’s to whip him so badly that he realizes his course of action will only result in pain. And they’re trying to bully Joe Rogan, just like they’re bullying all of us. It isn’t acceptable and the time to fight back is long overdue.