October 31, 2020

"After popular Spotify podcaster Joe Rogan had conspiracy theorist Alex Jones on his popular show 'The Joe Rogan Experience' earlier this week..."

"... Spotify CEO Daniel Ek defended Rogan's decision. 'We want creators to create. It's what they do best. We're not looking to play a role in what they should say,' Ek said... ... Spotify's policies 'do not entail what guests our podcasts invite on, it's more about the content itself.'...  Jones has been banned from publishing on Spotify since 2018 for 'repeated violations' of the platform's policy on hate speech....  On Spotify's Thursday morning earnings call.... Ek referenced Spotify's content policies as to why the episode is still available to stream. "We obviously review all the content that goes up.... But it's important to note that this needs to be evenly applied, no matter if it's internal pressure or external pressure as well, because, otherwise, we are a creative platform for lots of creators and it's important that they know what they expect from our platforms. If we can't do that, then there are other choices for a lot of creators to go to.'" 


I'm only about 43 minutes into this episode, but I've been enjoying the interaction with Joe. Jones is quite a motor-mouth, and he's an interesting contrast to Kanye West, who did a 3-hour show with Joe recently. West, another motor-mouth, is all about imagining things that could happen in the future, while Jones is about all what might be going on all over the place right now. That is both West and Jones are furiously jabbering about what we blasé humans cannot see. Joe is a great mediator, the normal guy who can channel them to us... whether that's good for us or not. 


Thanks to Spotify for sticking with free speech... and its contractual obligations to Joe. I predict that at some point in the future, Spotify will buy Joe out of his contract, and Joe will walk away with a big bag of money and be independent again. Which reminds me of Glenn Greenwald. Isn't he going to be suing The Intercept for breach of contract? And isn't he going to win? In any case, who cares about The Intercept without Glenn Greenwald? It just seemed like a platform for Greenwald to me. 

62 comments:

Achilles said...

Watching this Alex Jones is far more grounded in reality than the NYT's or WAPO.

This is the first time I have seen or heard Alex Jones speak in extended format. I have heard of him and I know he has a bunch of followers and I have heard clips.

He actually looks like he has legitimate sources of information.

BidenFamilyTaxPayerFundedCrackPipe said...

Not an Alex Jones fan - but so what. Not the point. with the current Stalinist-Chi-Com leftwing crack-down on free speech - we need MORE FREE SPEECH.

Crazy? So what

The real crazy, insane, frightening is the massive corrupt free speech squishing leftwing machine.

Michael K said...

Pierre Omidyar is the "angel" behind both The Intercept and The Bulwark. He can afford a few losses.

Stephen St. Onge said...

        I was a supporter of THE INTERCEPT.  Not any more.  "Get Woke, Go Broke."

Bill, Republic of Texas said...

Maybe the free flow of ideas is not dead.

Extreme media bias in this country is very real. Often it’s hidden under the cloak of “objective journalism.” At OutKick, we have a wide variety of opinions we publish every single day. I don’t agree with every opinion on this website. It would be impossible because we have so many opinions every day. But I am proud of the fact that OutKick represents the First Amendment wing of the First Amendment party.

This is his background:

For those of you who are new to OutKick: here are my presidential votes since I became a public media figure in 2004:

2004: John Kerry
2008: Barack Obama
2012: Barack Obama
2016: Gary Johnson
2020: Donald Trump

I also voted for Al Gore in 2000 and worked on his political campaign as a college student.

For much of my adult life, I considered myself a Democrat, but in 2016 that began to change. In 2016, I wasn’t happy with the choices between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump, so I voted for the Libertarian candidate, Gary Johnson. As a general rule, I have very many libertarian beliefs — I’m not a social justice warrior, but I also believe that adults, black, white, Asian, Hispanic, gay or straight, should be left to their own devices to pursue happiness as they see fit. I don’t care whom you marry. I don’t care whom you sleep with. I don’t care whom you worship. I believe you should have the freedom to make those choices.


Don't know who this guy is but he thinks exactly like me. Approved!

Achilles said...

35-60 minutes in there is an excellent discussion on global warming.

Alex Jones is better at explaining what is going on than I am.

rcocean said...

Its good Rogan had Alex Jones on, even though he's a kook.

Lars Porsena said...

AJ is sounding less and less the crackpot and more and more a jaundiced commentator.

Dr Weevil said...

Am I the only one here who can't help reading "contractual obligations" in the voice of the evil South African consular official saying "diplomatic immunity" in Lethal Weapon 2?

Achilles said...

Go to 60 minutes in,

Rogan's mind is blown.

YoungHegelian said...

When these clowns tell you how awful Alex Jones is & how he should be de-platformed, remember that these are the same clowns who back in 1999 de-platformed Speedy Gonzales.

They're not against "hate speech" at the margins. They're censorious bastards who seek to suppress anything they disagree with.

wendybar said...

Alex Jones has been proven to be more credible than people in the Pravda media like George Snufalufagus....Talk about Conspiracy theories...the Pravda media should own up to the ones they have been spewing for 5 years...Time to ban them, and kick them off the air for life.

Kevin said...

Thanks to Spotify for sticking with free speech.

It’s on the ballot this year, for those of us who show up and vote.

Francisco D said...

I like Joe Rogan, although he is not the sharpest knife in the drawer. Perhaps that makes him a good fit with Alex Jones and Kanye West.

He is an excellent conversationalist, sort of a macho Larry King. I was impressed with his recent interview with Gad Saad. It was clear that Dr. Saad is much sharper and more knowledgable, but Joe was not the least bothered by it. His ego did not get in the way. He strikes me as a real mensch.

greg said...

Alex Jones was beat down. He couldn't hide it with 3hrs of telling stories. Way to much whiskey for me, but, hey it's his body. Saw a side him that I liked. Like when he invited Tim to go eat a big steak with him after the show. Or inviting Joe to his house. When AJ prophecies his soon death was sad creepy for sure. Joe was one step ahead of spotify, by googling every crazy claim Jones made finding support for the stories I thought unbelievable.

Achilles said...

1:38 is going to make Ann uncomfortable.

JAORE said...

Thanks to Spotify for sticking with free speech...

Yeah. And here's to those that vote FOR free speech (i.e. against the D party).

I am far from cruelly neutral on that topic. It is the driving force in my current political stand against the left.

Achilles said...

The money shot is at 1:42:00 to 1:42:37.

The leftists are trying to normalize censorship with the help of big tech and have no moral high ground to stand on.

Keep reading the NYT and WAPO Ann.

Don't listen to the trashy stuff.

Achilles said...

1:46 the alcohol starts kicking in.

He also calls AOC and the rest of the crew the 4 horsemen.

He will be going to jail for using the wrong pronoun soon.

He is predicting war after Trump wins the election.

bagoh20 said...

I always believed what I had heard - that Jones is a crazy person, but I never really listed to him. After watching him on Rogan, I have a completely different opinion. He's just very suspicious of authorities and open minded about alternative theories at the same time. I think that's pretty healthy considering recent revelations, and it explains why he gets so much crap thrown at him. If you readily buy what the entrenched powers are telling you, you are a sucker at this point. They have been exposed as blatant liars for at least the last four years.

Chris Lopes said...

"Its good Rogan had Alex Jones on, even though he's a kook."

Yes he most certainly is. Ironically enough though, trying to keep him off the air gives him much underserved credibility. It's like his opponents really want to prove his point for him.

Achilles said...

“Every moment that we are not focused on the fact that there are 220,000 Americans who have died from this virus is good for him. So in that sense, as he incites additional violence against people who are just trying to save one another’s lives. It’s good for him. And that’s why I don’t want to talk about him endangering public servants lives. I want to talk about what he hasn’t done and that’s his job. The Trump virus response is the worst in the globe. I mean in the world, it’s the worst 8 million people have been have contracted covid-19, 220000 dead. We’ve got people in food pantry line who never would have imagined that they be there and no light on the horizon because our numbers keep going up.”

“This is a gravely serious moment for all of us and if you’re tired of wearing masks or you wish you were in church this morning or watching college football or wish your kids were in school in person, it is time for change in the this country and that’s why we’ve got to elect Joe Biden.”

bagoh20 said...

The truth of the future always sounds crazy in the present, and never turns out as expected by nearly anyone. That's why I'm at least open to the wildest ideas about it. The past does little to inform you about where it will go other than that humans tend to repeat their mistakes in an unpredictable but inescapable rhythm.

Lyle Smith said...

My thoughts exactly about the Intercept. What were those imbeciles thinking in killing their golden goose?

tim maguire said...

I worked my way through most of the Alex Jones interview. It was a slog. He may be right about most things he says, but he's all over the board and can’t stick to a topic and if he says something you want to hear more about, well, forget it. In half a second he’ll be talking about something completely different because he swears it’s related. And he crowds out the other guest. He's kind of an asshole about that.

The Greenwald interview a couple days later was really good, everything Jones could have been if he wasn’t so manic.

n.n said...

I like Joe Rogan, although he is not the sharpest knife in the drawer

He is a competent host, who reports, mediates, and manages a variety of topics and people with exemplary effect.

Jeff Brokaw said...

So a big content platform is siding with free speech? In 2020?

Huh. Maybe this is the beginning of the end for this unbelievably shitty year.

CWJ said...

Dj's principled stand in the face of dividing is as refreshing as it seems to be rare. Thanks for posting this bit of good news.

CWJ said...

Ek's not DJ's. What a strange bit of autocorrecting that was.

Sternhammer said...

In a year the Intercept won't exist and Greenwald will be bigger than ever. There won't be any point in Omidiyar sinking any more money into it.

Tina Trent said...

Joe Rogan's discussion of his own life with Jordan Peterson on Peterson's show is fascinating. Rogan is a true self-taught man and extraordinary empath. He falls for a lot of nonsense but he's a great interviewer because he really gets into whatever his guest brings to the table. I'm afraid he's going to submit to a lot of leftist fascist censoring on his new platform, which is a shame.

I once spent a year listening to Alex Jones every day, for a project on the ideological range and domestic and foreign funding of conservative media. He is hilarious but I couldn't square enjoying him with his abuse of gun crime victim families and truther notions abusing dead firemen and police. Here's an interesting profile: https://www.austinmonthly.com/alex-jones-is-mad-as-hell/

My final analysis: he has been at least partially funded in the past by a range of foreign entities seeking to manipulate the cusp of libertarian/leftist truthers, but that's not his entire gig. This funding happens across the political spectrum. It's really spy versus spy versus Mexican Oligarch out there. Nobody has clean hands, including Greenwald, which is especially unfortunate for him because "clean hands" was sort of his brand, except maybe for his year or so lawyering for a hairy-balls gay porn website.

Bygones.

bagoh20 said...

"Three in custody in France after Nice attack."

Wow, tough crowd in France. France, where nice isn't good enough.

Jupiter said...

Pickle-juice tastes like water? Is that anosmia is like?

Joe Smith said...

"I like Joe Rogan, although he is not the sharpest knife in the drawer."

He's $100 million sharp, so he's got that going for him...

I don't know why one of these platforms doesn't hire lefties, righties, and all things in the middle and just let them go.

Other than calling for someone to be killed, I wouldn't censor ANYTHING.

Seems like you would get more listeners that way.

Jupiter said...

I'm about 20 minutes in. Thus far, Alex Jones is batting 1000. Interesting that he described Robert Maxwell as a front for "Intel agencies". Ahem (((Mossad))) cough.

hawkeyedjb said...

The Intercept without Glen Greenwald is just MSNBC lite.

donald said...

Bill, Republic of Texas, look up Travis’s “boobs and the first amendment” with CNN hack Brooke Baldwin. It’s golden.

donald said...

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=TcWOQKbEPD0

Boy is she pissed.

n.n said...

"After popular Spotify podcaster Joe Rogan had conspiracy theorist...

Schiff? Schumer? Pelosi? Clinton? Biden? Obama? Oh, theorists, not conspirators. Some theorists, too.

J. Farmer said...

Alex Jones comes from that odd corner of the anti-government right that is animated by the "new world order" conspiracy. It shares a lot of features with the Christian Identity movement but with less emphasis on concepts like "Zionist Occupied Government" or explicit white identity. It became most prominent in the aftermath of the Ruby Ridge and Waco catastrophes but faded in popularity during the second half of the 90's, in part because it was blamed for inspiring and/or encouraging the Oklahoma City bombing.

That the federal government engineered the OK City bombing to implement a secret agenda of control is the organizing principles of Jones' way of thinking. He sees domestic terror incidents as either organized by shadowy forces in league with the government (e.g. 9/11) or as fabricated, staged incidents (e.g. Sandy Hook) that are used as pretexts for seizing weapons from citizens, detaining Americans without charge, and instituting a worldwide totalitarian police state.

Jones is enough of an independent thinker to not uncritically absorb the narratives pushed by the media. He essentially advocates a very crude version of elite theory but has a very simplistic understanding of bureaucratic functioning and how power dynamics work in society. The mistake people like Jones make is to look at social outcomes and think it was all cooked up by a dozen guys in a room somewhere rather than emerging from disparate groups pursuing their own self-interests. Their line of thinking is almost always top down rather than bottom up. It's similar to the reasoning that leads people to support intelligence design theories over evolutionary theories.

Jones is popular because people rightly distrust mainstream media sources, but his fanbase has really just managed to escape the fire for the frying pan. Jones' is first and foremost a businessman and a showman. The conspiracy theorizing is just the gimmick to get you off the street and listen to his pitch.

Kevin said...

I always believed what I had heard - that Jones is a crazy person, but I never really listed to him.

The political left needs boogeymen. It's much easier for them to say, "He's worse than X," than to actually debate the argument itself.

It's also why they defend the most reprehensible people in their own party -- so they can't be turned into weapons agains them.

Their power no longer comes from ideas and debate, but from shunning, cancelling, and assigning deplorability by association.

MayBee said...

I listened to Rogan talk to Greenwald yesterday. It was interesting to hear Joe talk about how he sees his show.
I haven't listened to it before, but it is that rare conversational talk format.

Imagine if CNN had something like that, instead of whatever it is they are doing.

buwaya said...

AJ doesn't often get such a platform as Rogans, so it seemed to me he was desperate to get everything he could into it. That MAY explain the scattered masses of material he was pushing, his life work it seemed.

He was a firehose of stuff because he probably felt he had to get as much as possible out there.

What I get from him and all other sources of inconvenient information is that there are masses of unexplained facts and incidents that may or may not be connected, but all of which are incompatible with the default world view pushed by the American social consensus. The mistake of most conspiracy theorists is that they are driven to create an alternate comprehensive world view with almost as limited information as the unenlightened citizen.

There has always been a reluctance to deal with this mass of inconvenient... things, but in most cases subsequent official information justifies the conspiracy theorists, to a degree anyway. The default world view is at least as defective as that of any given conspiracy theorists.

What is clear is -
a. The conventional view is thoroughly wrong and useless to anyone trying to understand what is going on.
b. That there are powers actively trying to suppress information.
c. That nearly all public policy decisions are made in secret by powerful but mainly obscure persons pursuing unknown interests. Whether there is one such cabal (unlikely) or many, we don't know.
d. Many of these powers, US-based or global, really don't like you Americans. Or for thst matter most of the rest of us either.
e. Paranoia is the only sensible outlook.

buwaya said...

"Their line of thinking is almost always top down rather than bottom up."

It is always "top down". This sort of thing is not born from secret societies of electricians or taxi drivers. There may be several or many "tops", but its all tops.

Lawrence Person said...

Speaking of Rogan, here's a post on Glenn Greenwald and the Democratic Media Complex that includes his complete interview with Rogan.

Maillard Reactionary said...

I have to agree with you there, J. Farmer @2:40PM. Conspiracy theorists (and their theories) set off my internal BS alarm. Along with gurus, mystics, cult leaders, and gnostic mumbo-jumbo of all kinds.

The real world is not the tidy understandable world that they posit. The fact that regularities and patterns arise in it is a mystery, not proof of a conspiracy (or design). (Gentle reader--just look up how often pi or the Fibonacci Series occur in Nature--and the disparate contexts in which they do--if you don't see what I'm getting at.) But we are wired by evolution to spot patterns and filter out noise. This works well, but only up to a point. We did not really start to make progress in understanding Nature until we learned that we must doubt everything, especially what we think we know to be true.

Humans led by confirmation bias aft gang agley, as Burns might have said.

Maillard Reactionary said...

Kevin burns Althouse at 12:31 PM.

Hurts so good.

paminwi said...


“Blogger JAORE said...
Thanks to Spotify for sticking with free speech...

Yeah. And here's to those that vote FOR free speech (i.e. against the D party).

I am far from cruelly neutral on that topic. It is the driving force in my current political stand against the left.”

This is why I personally can not square Althouse not voting.
If we lose the 1st Amendment all the other garbage she loves could be affected.
Maybe someone in power decides the NYT should be shut down. How would she survive? (Said snarkily!)

Truly though I think she’s not voting because downloading her drivers license to get an absentee ballot was a bridge too far and now she’s scared to vote in person because COVID!
And not voting is an easy cop out!

Jupiter said...

Jones is right about AGW, but he can't seem to make himself sit still and explain why he's right. Plus, he's a bit confused about the time scales. There was a zillion times more CO2 in the atmosphere back in the T-Rex day, and the sun was hotter, too. But that's got zip to do with the ice cores, which mostly go back half a million years or so. But as he started to say, before he interrupted himself three different ways, we had better hope CO2 causes GW, because otherwise, we are headed into another glacial era (which, like most people, he calls an "Ice Age"). And the Earth cannot support 10 billion people during a glacial era, or likely even 1 billion.

narciso said...

alex jones is not a creative thinker, this 'crisis actor' garbage, instead of pointing out how soros and the joyce foundation have set things in motion, but there's as much crazy garbage out there, you tipped me off to baldings world, real data, which they have tried to cover with a cloth,

paminwi said...


“Blogger JAORE said...
Thanks to Spotify for sticking with free speech...

Yeah. And here's to those that vote FOR free speech (i.e. against the D party).

I am far from cruelly neutral on that topic. It is the driving force in my current political stand against the left.”

This is why I personally can not square Althouse not voting.
If we lose the 1st Amendment all the other garbage she loves could be affected.
Maybe someone in power decides the NYT should be shut down. How would she survive? (Said snarkily!)

Truly though I think she’s not voting because downloading her drivers license to get an absentee ballot was a bridge too far and now she’s scared to vote in person because COVID!
And not voting is an easy cop out!

J. Farmer said...

@buwaya:

It is always "top down". This sort of thing is not born from secret societies of electricians or taxi drivers. There may be several or many "tops", but its all tops.

By top-down and bottom-up, I am not referring to position on a social hierarchy. I am talking about how phenomena can emerge from the synergistic effects of different systems operating in an interconnected and interdependent way. This dynamic is often what is referred to by the phrase "the appearance of design."

Night said...

J. Farmer said...

Jones is enough of an independent thinker to not uncritically absorb the narratives pushed by the media. ...

Jones is popular because people rightly distrust mainstream media sources

** I agree with J. Farmer. Alex Jones seemed like a fring shock jock to me. Where he was trying to be Howard Stern. I listen to neither of them unless Joe Rogan interviews them. Alex Jones became persona non grata to me when he abused Michelle Malkin.

However in this more sober podcast. Notice Rogan was sober. And notice Jones then produced a lot of information that would make you think. Shock Jock

walter said...

"Thanks to Spotify for sticking with free speech... and its contractual obligations to Joe."
Reads more like they are open to censoring if the content doesn't suit them.
Just not this time...

Night said...

The modern world is full of an increased level of noise. There is only time for so much quality content. Rogan and Althouse and ScottAdams and Sam Harris provide me a good clear view of thinking? That's probably 4-6 hours of content a day. Adams and Althouse are super posters. If either of them had half the Chinese connections Hunter Biden has they would be regional drug lords.

NYT, New Yorker, CNN, FOX, ABC, CBS, NBC are all in my distant past. I only encounter them anymore if one of the podcasters mentions them.

Temujin said...

You are correct about The Intercept without Glenn Greenwald. It is done. Too bad they don't realize it.

I continue to be impressed with Joe Rogan. I don't listen to Alex Jones. But I'm impressed that he (Rogan) had Jones on. I like that he has people crossing all lines on his show. It is very interesting. And he lets them talk. Even more interesting. He engages, and keeps things going, but he lets them talk.

He will make the upper echelon of Spotify nervous after awhile and they'll sign him a large check to leave. At which point, he may start his own media company, which seems to be the thing to do now for those who find themselves with cash and outside of the corporate media structures.

Banjo said...

It's a sad commentary on my willed alienation from the popular culture that I'd read about these guys but never saw them in action. Alex Jones I understood was a nutcase and Joe Rogan was popular. That's it, all I knew. But I see now that Rogan is a very bright regular guy who asks sharp questions and Jones is a brilliant eccentric who seems to have been right about a lot of things. Thanks for the introduction.

Howard said...

With the rising popularity of QAnon among the unwashed, Alex Jones seems middle class.

J. Farmer said...

@Banjo:

Jones is a brilliant eccentric who seems to have been right about a lot of things.

I agree he can be amusing, especially when he does his wide-eyed hollering routine, but he's never really been right about anything. Even when armed with legitimate facts, they're just plugged into the same narrative he has pushed for over 20 years. Oftentimes, Jones will simply make shit up as he goes along. The conspiracy mongering is just what Jones does in between pitching products, like vitamin supplements, to his credulous audience. He is a modern day version of the old tent revival conmen.

Tina Trent said...

Jupiter -- interestingly, Mossad is one of the foreign entities pushing money at libertarian campaigns here. I and others strongly believe but cannot prove that Alex Jones is one of their recipents, because it is in Israel's interest to have, in Jones, a voice speaking the language of libertarian/leftist truthers while offering a nuanced pro-Israel message, which is definitely what Jones does. He's also in the bag more obviously for Putin and has several ties to RT, Putin's openly funded demoralization propaganda machine, which also appeals to disaffected leftists and libertarians in equal measure. Matt Taibbi has a good book looking at the politically ecumenical adherents to trutherism.

There is no longer any difference between the agitprop quotient of fringe so-called "conspiracy theorists" and that of the MSM, and to an astonishing degree they nearly all recieve money from foreign or foreign-promoting, anti-American domestic sources, be it the NYTimes being carried by Mexican billionaire Carlos Slim to run pro-open borders claptrap, or Washington Post quietly taking money from Chinese Dommunist sources, or Glenn Greenwald, Huffpo, and the Never-Trump Bulwark all being funded by Iranian (parents) radical Pierre Omidyar, or every journalism program and academic online media department in the country being funded by Soros. It's all typical anti-American demoralization propaganda.

What's frightening is that these same people are now turning their attention to online platforms with the goal of suppressing speech. They are using the EU and UN models of "hate speech" rules to label and suppress all conservative voices. If Biden wins, the First Amendment is toast. That alone is cause enough to vote for Trump. And Howard, they will come for you too once they're done targeting people with consistent conservative and Republican principles. So at least that's one silver lining.

daskol said...

One thing Alex Jones showed in this interview: he knows what shit to sling on Joe Rogan, and what kind of bullshit to leave for his own show. He was highly prepared with provocative and discordant facts which he could substantiate, and left out the truther stuff.

I subscribed to Greenwald's substack, as well as Taibbi's a few weeks ago. In terms of defending the 1st amendment and a rowdy version of free speech, what Althouse does in linking to these things is far more significant than scanning a piece of paper with an old white man's name on it in a HS gym. Stop whining.

daskol said...

The new podcast is great, but I wish Althouse would move to substack. It's the best self-publishing platform out there, and it seems like a great way for prominent dissidents to monetize their work without any compromise to our nouveau oligarchy. I hope we are seeing a renaissance of the distributed world that was so exciting at the dawn of the blogosphere. Let a thousand substack newsletters bloom, or even better, let a thousand similar platforms launch. Fuck the gated web, and fuck Google. They don't deserve you.