Joe Rogan’s Sufferer Grift | by Emily Pothast | Might, 2021

The ‘anti-woke’ podcaster is paid nicely to perpetuate the established order

Earlier this week, Joe Rogan was widely mocked for claiming on his podcast that the logical end result of “woke” discourse is that “straight white males” will not be allowed to speak or go outdoors:

You possibly can by no means be woke sufficient that’s the issue. It retains going. It retains going additional and additional and additional down the road. For those who get to the purpose the place you capitulate the place you conform to all these calls for, it should ultimately get to “straight white males usually are not allowed to speak.” As a result of it’s your privilege to specific your self when different folks of coloration have been silenced all through historical past. Will probably be “you’re not allowed to go outdoors.” As a result of so many individuals had been imprisoned for therefore a few years.

Many people pointed out the sheer absurdity of a man who will get paid $10 million a month to provide one of many world’s hottest podcasts complaining about being silenced. Final month, Rogan told his tens of millions of listeners that younger, wholesome folks most likely don’t must get the Covid vaccine, sparking vital outrage. Clearly, not having the ability to freely say no matter pops into his head will not be an issue that Rogan truly suffers from. And but, to categorize him as merely delusional misses the purpose of publicly making such claims.

Rogan is a performer. He could be value many tens of millions of {dollars} in actual life, however his persona is that of a rough-around-the-edges working-class sort who could be enjoyable to take bong rips with in case your concept of enjoyable is getting stoned with a man who may casually drop the n-word. To his credit score, Rogan does an excellent job of presenting himself as somebody his audience can establish with. In accordance with a 2020 survey, 71% of his viewers was male, and their common age was 24. The individuals who hearken to Rogan aren’t particularly wealthy—solely 19% made greater than $100,000 a yr, in response to the identical survey—however they aren’t particularly prone to be experiencing financial precarity, both—greater than half of his viewers reported making over $50,000 a yr. As not too long ago as a number of years in the past, Rogan’s goal demographic would have probably seen themselves as upwardly cell, with an abundance of financial and social prospects. That they most likely not really feel that approach is one thing we should contemplate if we’re to know the social operate that Rogan’s narrative of “straight white male” victimhood is serving.

Many individuals identified the sheer absurdity of a man who will get paid $10 million a month to provide one of many world’s hottest podcasts complaining about being silenced.

The impact of neoliberal financial coverage over the previous a number of a long time has been an erosion of financial prospects for just about all working and middle-class Individuals. Employees are working longer hours for much less pay and fewer job safety whereas the wealth of CEOs has skyrocketed. Given this example, it will be logical to count on an uptick in resentment towards those that are straight taking advantage of the disparity. The instant objective of “anti-woke” (or “anti-PC”) rhetoric—which has existed underneath varied guises as a right-wing boogeyman for many years—is to assist deflect resentment away from the ruling class onto teams which are much more marginalized inside the identical exploitive system that the resentful are themselves caught in. “Anti-woke” commentators depend on the truth that dynamics like racism and sexism exist already, utilizing these dynamics to craft stereotypical “social justice warriors” (or “critical race theorists”) who may be blamed for the lack of wealth and perceived standing of younger white guys whereas the billionaires lining their pockets at everybody else’s expense slip by unnoticed.

As Jane Mayer outlined in her e-book Dark Money: The Hidden History of the Billionaires Behind the Rise of the Radical Right, “anti-PC” discourse is huge enterprise, with billions of {dollars} of funding available to content material creators whose work helps protect the foundational fantasy of capitalism: that those that are rich and highly effective basically deserve that wealth and energy. This fantasy exists in stress with the financial actuality that individuals who work arduous don’t at all times get forward. This stress could also be obscured, partly, by way of narratives that blame social justice advocates for stopping common white guys from amassing wealth and energy fairly than on the inequalities constructed into the system itself.

That is the place Rogan and his $100 million Spotify contract enter the image. Whereas Rogan makes a giant present of inviting folks from throughout the political spectrum onto his podcast—even endorsing Bernie Sanders’s 2020 presidential bid—as a rule, each he and his visitors are spouting some type of capitalist apologia (that’s, once they’re not speaking about colonizing the galaxy). As an example, in a November 2020 dialog with Complete Meals CEO John Mackey, Rogan told his viewers:

The issue lots of people have with capitalism is that they attribute capitalism to greed. I don’t suppose there’s something incorrect with contributing to a greater neighborhood — making healthcare extra inexpensive or free, making schooling extra inexpensive or free. However human beings want incentives to carry out.

If something, the occasional leftist commentary that seems on Rogan’s present serves to bolster the notion that Rogan’s personal attitudes are middle-of-the-road and due to this fact signify a voice of purpose. This “everyman” persona is used to information the perceptions of his largely younger viewers in instructions which are extra pleasant to what could be termed a more-or-less libertarian agenda. A 2019 survey performed by the Cato Institute discovered that younger folks had been much more probably than their boomer and Gen X forebears to have a optimistic perspective towards socialism. Not solely that, the survey revealed a big pattern towards younger folks embracing the assumption that wealth is extra prone to be the results of exploitation than one thing that’s “earned.”

The “straight white male” victimhood narrative may be most readily understood as a response towards this pattern. The best risk to capitalism is younger folks getting clever to the grift; “anti-woke” discourse seeks to attract battle strains inside the working class by getting younger folks—particularly those that occur to be white and/or males—to facet with the ruling class and towards everybody else on civil rights points. This technique, which has been openly adopted by the Republican Celebration, is explicitly geared toward undermining solidarity, and sadly, it usually works, even amongst individuals who contemplate themselves “leftists.” It has been famous that Rogan’s present particularly appeals to people who are lonely. This loneliness straight displays the emotions of social alienation that happen when decrease and middle-class white males are inspired—on the behest of the shadowy billionaires who fund “anti-woke” discourse—to imagine that the battle they have to be preventing is with folks of various races and genders inside their very own social courses fairly than taking over those that have rigged the system to their very own profit.

Rogan presents himself as an outsider who tackles points the mainstream media received’t contact; in actuality, his weekly viewers of tens of millions is about as “mainstream” as media will get. It’s on this context that Rogan constantly reveals himself to be an enormously highly effective voice for the financial and social established order. His “anti-woke” narrative isn’t simply delusional, it’s debilitating. He’s paid tens of millions of {dollars} per week to promote his listeners the concept that they’re victims fairly than potential brokers of optimistic change.

Rogan’s viewers is massive sufficient that they rework the world in the event that they wished to. His rhetoric of “straight white male” victimhood appears geared toward ensuring they don’t.

#Joe #Rogans #Sufferer #Grift #Emily #Pothast



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