For the crime of hosting medical viewpoints on Covid and vaccines that challenge the corporate media narrative, Joe Rogan has found himself in the middle of a boycott attempt by a handful of artists and a bevy of enraged blue checkmarks on Twitter. Meanwhile, the Chinese Communist Party has carried out human rights abuses against everyone from Uyghur Muslims in Xinjiang to political dissidents to residents under its oppressive Covid regime, and will be rewarded with the honor of hosting the 2022 Winter Olympics in Beijing.
Joe Rogan has described himself as being on the political left, and even endorsed socialist Sen. Bernie Sanders for president in 2020. He’s no Tea Partier or even a Republican.
Yet Rogan — who has survived cancellation attempts before — is again the target of rage for hosting guests like Dr. Robert Malone on his show, “The Joe Rogan Experience.” Malone, who was instrumental in developing mRNA vaccine technology, criticized Covid medical mandates and highlighted the vaccine’s inability to prevent infection or transmission, describing the unilateral thinking bloc of corporate media, government, and their submissive Covid disciples as a “mass formation psychosis.”
Merely giving Malone a platform for discussion has made Rogan the target of calls for Spotify to take down his podcast, which was the music streaming platform’s top listened-to podcast in 2021. Spotify’s failure to immediately and unilaterally cancel Rogan for facilitating something that used to be called freedom of speech has led artists like Neil Young, Joni Mitchell, and Springsteen guitarist Nils Lofgren to boycott Spotify.
Podcaster Brené Brown also announced she would stop making her Spotify-exclusive podcasts “until further notice.” A group of 270 doctors and scientists sent a letter to Spotify urging the company to crack down on “misinformation” like they insisted Rogan was supposedly enabling. Even Mr. and Mrs. Meghan Markle expressed their “concerns” about Spotify’s hosting of supposed misinformation. Amid this barrage, Spotify saw its stock value tumble by billions.
Meanwhile, blue check marks on Twitter fanned the cancellation flames, while Twitter did its best to highlight the ire in its “trending” section.
Rogan responded to the boycott efforts on Sunday night. “The problem I have with the term ‘misinformation,’ especially today, is that many of the things that we thought of as misinformation just a short while ago are now accepted as fact,” he argued. “Like for instance, eight months ago if you said ‘If you get vaccinated you can still catch Covid and you can still spread Covid,’ you would be removed from social media. … Now that’s accepted as fact.”
But then Rogan endorsed Spotify’s decision to put a disclaimer on “controversial” discussions like his own. “I’m very happy with that,” he said, also noting he would “most certainly be open” to following guests like Malone with other “experts” who push the Covid establishment narrative.
It’s insane that Rogan’s earnest desire to allow competing views into the discussion prompted such backlash. The thought police want to boycott a podcaster — and not just a podcaster but the platform that hosts him — but no one seems that interested in a much bigger opportunity to boycott a far more sinister threat.
This Friday, the Winter Olympics begin in Beijing, China. For many reasons, the CCP is a problematic host for the competition. These include the recent suspicious disappearance of Chinese tennis star Peng Shuai after she accused a high-ranking CCP official of sexual assault. This prompted outrage from the Women’s Tennis Association, even as the International Olympic Committee appeared to be helping Chinese authorities in downplaying concerns for Peng’s safety.
China also deserves censure for its criminal mishandling of the Covid-19 virus, which has reportedly killed more than 5 million people. Chinese leadership didn’t officially notify the World Health Organization about the new virus until Jan. 3, 2020, even though by Dec. 27, 2019, the virus had already been sequenced and several people, including a health-care worker, were infected.
After Dr. Li Wenliang, a doctor in Wuhan, blew the whistle on Dec. 30, 2019, that “several individuals … were diagnosed with SARS-like cases and quarantined in the hospital where he worked,” Li was suspiciously hospitalized and said to have died of Covid-19, although his initial tests for Covid were negative and he didn’t test positive until after he was hospitalized. Another Wuhan doctor, Dr. Ai Fen, spoke out after Li’s death, saying she had also been pressured to stay silent by authorities. Two weeks later, she had disappeared.
Besides its treatment of Covid whistleblowers, China has abused its citizens with inhumane lockdowns. A month ago, a woman who was eight months pregnant lost her baby after a hospital rejected her “because her Covid test was a few hours too old.” A second pregnant woman reported a similarly tragic situation.
Also, most infamously, the CCP continues to round up Uyghur Muslims in the country’s Xinjiang province and force them into “reeducation” camps where there are reports of indoctrination, gang rape, forced labor, organ harvesting, rooms full of torture instruments, and forced abortions and sterilizations.
The U.S. State Department estimated in 2018 the CCP had forced possibly more than 2 million people, mostly Uyghur Muslims, into camps in Xinjiang. The Australian Strategic Policy Institute used satellite data to identify 380 camps in 2020, but Reuters reported in 2018 that the number could be as high as 1,200. Last year, Trump’s outgoing Secretary of State Mike Pompeo made the United States the first nation to officially acknowledge China’s treatment of the Uyghurs as genocide.
Yet, while the U.S. and a few other countries including the U.K. and Canada have announced a “diplomatic boycott” of the games in Beijing, the West happily allowed the IOC to plan the 2022 Winter Olympics there. There’s an argument to be made that boycotting the games this late would simply let China win, or that there wasn’t enough time to relocate them.
But it’s also true that the IOC announced Beijing as the host city back in 2015, a heads-up that gave Western governments plenty of time to object to China’s criminal human rights record (which we knew years ago was abysmal). To wait until the last minute and then cry that it’s “too late!” is as lazy as it is dishonest.
It’s also been reported that athletes and attendees at the Winter Olympics this month are required to download an app on their phones that has been demonstrated to spy on users’ audio and send it to Chinese servers to be “analyzed.” So any strategizing between athletes and coaches better not take place with a cell phone nearby — not to mention this is an insane invasion of privacy.
But instead of pushing back against a genocidal communist dictatorship (and an International Olympic Committee that abets it, along with many U.S. corporations), the American thought police are too busy shutting down a liberal podcaster for daring to ask a guest on his show for interesting opinions. Then again, maybe China’s dictatorial regime doesn’t offend them that much anyway.