Will Joe Rogan blink? Will the world’s most popular and powerful podcaster buckle as the censorious weight of the Globalist American Empire bears down upon him? The world is waiting to find out, but Rogan’s situation looked shakier than ever over the weekend after Spotify CEO Daniel Ek directly condemned Rogan for the first time:
There are no words I can say to adequately convey how deeply sorry I am for the way The Joe Rogan Experience controversy continues to impact each of you. Not only are some of Joe Rogan’s comments incredibly hurtful – I want to make clear that they do not represent the values of this company. I know this situation leaves many of you feeling drained, frustrated and unheard.
I think it’s important you’re aware that we’ve had conversations with Joe and his team about some of the content in his show, including his history of using some racially insensitive language. Following these discussions and his own reflections, he chose to remove a number of episodes from Spotify. He also issued his own apology over the weekend.
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.
Another criticism that I continue to hear from many of you is that it’s not just about The Joe Rogan Experience on Spotify; it comes down to our direct relationship with him. In last week’s Town Hall, I outlined to you that we are not the publisher of JRE. But perception due to our exclusive license implies otherwise. So I’ve been wrestling with how this perception squares with our values.
I deeply regret that you are carrying so much of this burden.
I know it is difficult to have these conversations play out so publicly, and I continue to encourage you to reach out to your leaders, your HR partners or me directly if you need support or resources for yourself or your team.
Ek went on to pledge $100 million, roughly the same amount as Rogan’s Spotify contract, to promoting content from “historically marginalized groups.”
The full mewling statement is available at Variety.
Certainly, the past two weeks have been some of the most trying of Rogan’s life. For years now, the Joe Rogan Experience podcast host has been willing to countenance viewpoints at odds with all of the forces and interest groups aligned with the Globalist American Empire. Dissidents from the establishment party lines promulgated by the military-industrial complex, the medical-industrial complex, and countless other oligarchic and globalist-aligned party lines have all been welcomed on to Joe Rogan’s podcast with open arms. For these grievous sins against the nascent New World Order, Rogan has come under an immense amount of pressure from the regime and its mouthpieces.
Rogan certainly didn’t help himself as he issued weak apologetic statements over the weekend, exposing his belly to the baying mob.
As pressure has intensified on Spotify and its star podcaster Joe Rogan, listeners reported that the company had quietly removed dozens of episodes of his show, while Rogan apologized early Saturday for his use of a racial slur in past episodes.
In an Instagram video, Rogan — whose talk show, “The Joe Rogan Experience,” is Spotify’s most popular podcast, and has been available there exclusively for more than a year — addressed what he called “the most regretful and shameful thing that I’ve ever had to talk about publicly.” A compilation video showed Rogan using the slur numerous times in past episodes of his show; it had been shared by the singer India.Arie, who has removed her catalog from Spotify in protest of what she called Rogan’s “language around race.”
Rogan said the compilation was drawn from “12 years of conversations” on his show, and that it looked “horrible, even to me.” The clips, he said, had been taken out of context, which he said included discussions about how it had been used by comedians like Richard Pryor and Redd Foxx, who were Black, and Lenny Bruce, who was white.
Sadly, if Rogan does get canceled or neutered, he will have earned it. Apologizing to a woke mob is never the correct strategy, ever. Apologies to the left never turn out well for a myriad of reasons, but here are two from scholar Richard Hanania:
First, although apologies can help heal rifts in relationships between individuals, people may apply different standards to controversies involving public figures. Research shows that a person who backs down in a dispute becomes less likable to observers, who may want to punish that individual.
Second, overconfidence, even to the point of breaking rules, causes people to view an individual more positively, as does social risk-taking. In particular, males who show social dominance are judged more attractively as potential mates. An individual who does not back down in the face of controversy shows confidence by not giving in to social pressure, and takes a risk by refusing to follow the conventional path. Some on the right openly suggest that part of Trump’s appeal lies in his refusal to apologize and his unwillingness to be “politically correct.”
The left-wing baying mob also doesn’t deserve an apology because its “trauma” is insincere and its anger is fake. It is the phony, manipulative anger of an abuser who wants to hurt others, and enjoys doing it. To such creatures, an apology is only a sign of weakness, inviting further demands and more aggression.
The mob’s obsession may feel odd to some. Despite his dissident, conservative, and right-wing guests, Rogan is not particularly ideological at all. He endorsed Bernie Sanders for president in 2020 and voted for Gary Johnson in 2016. Rogan is, in essence, a low-attachment swing voter, open to a wide variety of candidates.
The lesson to be learned here, then, isn’t simply that the range of tolerable opinion is narrower than ever, although that might be true. More revealingly, the “Crush Rogan” campaign shows that the establishment views cementing its own power and legitimacy more important than simply stamping out any and all dissident ideologies.
Rather than concern itself with stamping out any and all fringe ideologies, the Globalist American Empire is more petrified of anyone and anything that grows large enough to present a challenge to its legitimacy and power—anyone that it cannot cannot control, intimidate, buy off, or destroy. In the information war, the regime is more concerned with enforcing a certain loyalty among its subjects to certain approved sources of information, as we pointed out in a previous piece on Covid narrative control:
In big picture terms, then, that means the crusade against misinformation is not a tool designed to enforce belief in any particular piece of information, or “the truth” write large. Instead, it is designed to enforce loyalty to certain sources of information. The only way to be entirely safe from the misinformation label is to mindlessly reaffirm the latest declarations from a handful of official and quasi-official outlets. The push to demonize misinformation is therefore a push to consolidate all narrative control in the hands of a few regime-approved (and regime-compliant) institutions.
Rogan is a focal point of hatred not because his views are particularly “extreme” or “offensive” to dominant left-wing sensibilities. It’s because he is popular, unpredictable, and practices a studied independence from the narratives of the regime.
Fans of The Joe Rogan Experience will often say they are avid listeners because Rogan, despite his massive success, is basically a “normal guy.” He has a sense of humor. Joe Rogan’s modus operandi is to have open and honest conversations with people he finds interesting, whether they are comedians, writers, scientists, businessmen, politicians, or public intellectuals. The conversations will go for hours, without effeminate screaming, hectoring, nagging or shaming. If Rogan and his guest are uncertain over a certain point, they will Google the topic right there on the spot. Rogan will speak with essentially anybody, and his interviews are conducted without any element of propaganda, or political hectoring, or predetermined conclusions.
Even if Rogan personally wants to keep the nature of his show completely unchanged, there is now enormous pressure, from both the outside and Rogan’s own subconscious, to dial things back — to not have that unusual, edgy, or dissident guest who could blow up into another controversy.
Despite having an Average Joe persona, Rogan also distinctively straddles many different cultural spheres. People who watch a cable news show like Tucker Carlson Tonight are tuning in because they are into politics. But Joe Rogan is a much larger cultural phenomenon. Though Rogan has drawn attention for his influence on political topics, he is also long-established in the world of sports (as an MMA announcer and practitioner) and the world of entertainment (as an actor and comedian).
In this respect Rogan in many ways echoes the unique position of Donald Trump in 2016. Other candidates had previously trumpeted Trump’s political positions long before 2016, but none of them could replicate his combination of celebrity, name recognition, media savvy, personal wealth, and big-name friends and connections. Only Trump could be Trump.
Similarly, in the world of commentary, only Rogan can be Rogan. Not only is his podcast the most popular in the world, it’s not even that close. Rogan’s nearest rivals are all either ensemble operations or focused on very specific topics like true crime or politics. In the world of general, host-driven podcasts, Rogan stands alone.
What does that mean? It means that, just like Trump, Rogan really can be a threat to the existing order if left unchecked. Unlike other more explicitly ideological voices, Rogan is unpredictable. One day, he’ll speak to Graham Hancock, a writer who promotes unconventional theories of long-lost ancient civilizations. Another day he will feature boxing superstar Mike Tyson. On the next show he might have on unfunny establishment comedian Amy Schumer. But on the following day, Rogan might have a rollicking five-hour conversation with Alex Jones.
Rogan’s eclectic interests in part explain how his audience has ballooned to gargantuan proportions. With 11 million listeners per show, the audience for The Joe Rogan Experience more than doubles that of any other cable news host.
— #OnAmission4Gold (@KelvinGastelum) February 7, 2022
Those two factors combined make Rogan a threat to the Globalist American Empire. Unless he is shackled by Spotify, Rogan could plausibly end up giving a platform as large as CNN, Fox, and MSNBC combined to any idea he chooses. Already, Rogan has exposed the mainstream to the many questions about January 6 and expressed enthusiasm for the convoy of Canadian freedom truckers. With a single program, Rogan in the future could instantly lend massive momentum to similar anti-regime civil disobedience movements in the United States.
This perceived threat, more than any specific views Rogan holds, is why the campaign to destroy him is so intense.
Indeed, after Rogan’s apology, media vultures sensed vulnerability and amped up the ruthlessness of their relentless and coordinated campaign.
The media hate everything that Rogan and his show represent. The modern press arrogates itself enormous power to decide what is good for America, what “narratives” can be publicly expressed, and who is allowed to be platformed, yet at the same time they very obviously do not want the best for the people they purport to lead. They do not want Americans exposed to genuinely substantive content; they do not want them to appreciate diversity of thought, detailed debate, or factual nuance. They want the people to be passive recipients of only approved propaganda.
The relationship between the press and the public is psychologically abusive, akin to that between an abusive wife and her henpecked, neutered spouse. Just like an abusive spouse, the press loves to turn children against their parents, and just like an abusive spouse, the press makes dramatic threats (“This will be the end of democracy!!!”) about what will happen if the public tries to ignore them or refuse their demands.
The psychologically abusive press cares about defending the regime’s legitimacy and preserving its power more than simply policing any and all heterodox speech directly. What does that mean? Among other things, it means that the regime can tolerate outsiders and “dissidents” for quite a long time, no matter how noxious or heretical their views, as long as they remain obscure or impotent. It is only when said outsiders become big enough to influence the masses and threaten elite legitimacy and power that the hammer will come down, and quickly. Despite his benign takes, Joe Rogan will always face far more intense pressure than a neo-Nazi podcaster with ten subscribers, or even a right-wing talk radio host speaking only to tens of thousands of viewers whose message might be far more radical than Rogan’s.
This phenomenon explains why the regime went into meltdown mode over January 6, but not the BLM riots, even though BLM riots caused far more death and destruction, and at one point even threatened the White House itself. Ultimately, every major demand from BLM was just for more of what the Globalist American Empire already wants: More anti-white racism, more redistribution, more urban anarcho-tyranny, more toppled statues, more power to the state. For the powerful, the BLM riots were a tool.
sometimes I forget that this was a real CNN chyron pic.twitter.com/NQM81ioGtD
— Abigail Marone 🇺🇸 (@abigailmarone) February 4, 2022
Perhaps Rogan’s best response to the berserk outpouring of real and contrived outrage would have been to show critics the consideration they deserved by simply saying nothing at all. Failing that, he should have called out their fake outrage without conceding an inch. Certainly, former President Donald Trump had the right idea in a statement issued from Mar-a-Lago:
Joe Rogan is an interesting and popular guy, but he’s got to stop apologizing to the Fake News and Radical Left maniacs and lunatics. How many ways can you say you’re sorry? Joe, just go about what you do so well and don’t let them make you look weak and frightened. That’s not you and it never will be!
Great Advice For Joe Rogan From President Trump pic.twitter.com/4udd4zmZr3
— The Columbia Bugle 🇺🇸 (@ColumbiaBugle) February 8, 2022
As Rogan issued his humiliating apology, Spotify also yanked 70 episodes of his podcast — nearly 4% of his entire catalog — off the platform. A large share of the removed episodes featured comedians, suggesting that Spotify simply decided a general posture against all comedy before Year Zero would be the best and safest policy.
Nevertheless, for now, Rogan survives. The question now is: In what form? Daniel Ek’s statement is positive but also ominous. Rogan may stay on the air and censorship may not be the answer for Ek, yet a large share of his catalog has been memory-holed, and future episodes may carry content warnings.
But let us have hope yet. There are several reasons to believe that Rogan will resist this temptation. Many assumed Rogan was immediately finished when he signed his deal with Spotify back in May 2020. Many counted him out and assumed he was, essentially, taking a $100 million payoff in return for not doing anything controversial ever again. But Rogan proved the doubters wrong: That fall he had Alex Jones on for another appearance (and took major heat for it), even though Spotify had already banned Jones’s show from their service. He had on Jordan Peterson, James Lindsay, Alex Berenson, and of course Robert Malone. The show’s spirit survived and Rogan’s celebrity became as big as ever.
What’s more, a new report out from Paul Joseph Watson at Infowars suggests that, far from being defeated and depressed, Joe Rogan is as fired up and raring to go as ever after a Sunday evening spent performing stand-up comedy and hanging out with Alex Jones:
Despite coming under a sustained and unprecedented censorship assault from the establishment, it will come as a surprise to some that Joe Rogan is more defiant and happier than ever.
Rogan’s Spotify podcast has come under repeated attack over the last few weeks by the establishment due to the comedian hosting doctors and other commentators who have challenged the official pandemic narrative.
This was compounded over the weekend by another contrived controversy after a number of clips of Rogan saying the n-word in conversation were edited together.
However, after radio host Alex Jones spent the evening with Rogan, his friend for 20-plus years, after Rogan’s stand-up show at the Vulcan Gas Company club in Austin, it was immediately apparent that Rogan feels more positive than ever about his role in the fight against cancel culture.
Rumors of Rogan’s demise have been greatly exaggerated, with Jones reporting Rogan has never seemed happier, more focused and more energetic.
The UFC commentator’s buoyant mood was exemplified by his new 2 hour show at the Vulcan, during which he debuted new material that went down like a storm. [Infowars]
This report from Infowars is sure to energize the Joe Rogan fanbase and the millions of conservatives, Republicans, independents, and even free-thinking liberals and leftists who are cheering for him to defy the establishment harpies, censors, journalistic bootlickers and oligarchic interests arrayed against him. According to Paul Joseph Watson, Rogan is eager to resume podcasting and fight the good fight:
The comedian also revealed that the clarifications he issued over the contrived vaccine and n-word controversies were not planned or calculated as a result of pressure from Spotify, but his own personal decision to address his fanbase with integrity and honesty.
Rogan believes the establishment is committing political and cultural suicide by targeting him for cancellation, and that we are approaching a major tipping point when it comes to the basic right of human expression and independent thought.
The comedian is excited to represent a symbol of free humanity and a truly authentic expression of dissident thinking against regime orthodoxy in these unprecedented times.
Indicating that he will share more good news on his podcast soon, Rogan remains ever the happy warrior.
He’s invigorated, audacious, and he’s not going anywhere. [Infowars]
After January 6, 2021, a massive array of business, media, political governmental, and judicial factions took an incredibly united front to crush what they called a “coup.” The Jan. 6 protests, which to most Americans were a ho-hum affair that might have gotten a little bit out of control for an hour or two, posed a much more profound threat to their legitimacy.
The insular, inward-looking, and incestuous regime does not care a bit about principle, or law and order, or our norms, our “Our Democracy.” Unless something or someone threatens its legitimacy and power, the regime simply don’t care.
Joe Rogan, to his enormous credit, has become a threat. And hopefully, he will remain one, simply by continuing to be himself, talking to whomever he wants, and asking whatever questions he feels like. So how about it, Joe? Let’s talk about Ray Epps sometime.
.@joerogan Discussing The Curious Case Of Ray Epps & January 6th
"He did it pre-January 6th, he did it during the January 6th thing, and that this guy has faced no legal charges whatsoever, and people are like well wtf is going on here?"https://t.co/6bbWmMWKxX pic.twitter.com/IRZnXUO2yq
— The Columbia Bugle 🇺🇸 (@ColumbiaBugle) November 21, 2021
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