Unless you’ve been under a rock for the past few days, you are likely already well-versed in the latest culture war brouhaha.
The dustup between legendary rocker Neil Young and legendary podcaster, actor, and standup comedian Joe Rogan has further divided those who worship at the altar of the COVID vaccine and those who dare to question an “official” narrative that further unravels with each passing day.
Specifically Young, who has a history of questioning scientific dogma himself, and who once had the gall to embark, with colleagues Crosby, Stills, and Nash, on the “Freedom of Speech” tour, has accused Rogan of pushing misinformation related to COVID vaccines.
And after Spotify refused to de-platform Rogan, Young pulled his music from the audio streaming service.
Fellow fossilized rockers Joni Mitchell and Nils Lofgren have threatened to follow suit, echoing Young’s demand that Spotify remove Rogan or risk an exodus of legacy talent.
Even goth seductress Elvira, who recently re-emerged to announce she was gay, has taken to Twitter to voice her support for Neil and Company.
Like moths to a flame, the rebel-turned-conformists cohort has seized on a final opportunity to grab the headlines that have so callously eluded them since their heyday. They need only line up behind Ole Neil to see their names in Rolling Stone one last time.
The result: a showdown between Boomer and modern-day counterculture icons. Fortunately it’s one Rogan should win, for three reasons.
First of all, Neil’s claim that Rogan is “potentially causing death” doesn’t hold water. Given that Rogan’s audience is primarily Generation X and Millennial crypto bros, exactly who is he putting in danger with this alleged “misinformation”? It’s the elderly that are most at risk from COVID, and I seriously doubt Rogan is a household name among the residents of Shady Acres.
Second, Rogan is perhaps Spotify’s biggest draw, with approximately 50 million listeners each month. Compare that with Young’s roughly six million and it’s a fairly easy calculation for the company. With clips like this one, it's no wonder Rogan is such a draw.
So Rogan looks in good shape to weather this storm unless bigger, younger names join Neil Young's exodus (his former bandmate David Crosby was attempting to reach out to Taylor Swift via Twitter on Monday).
Finally, and most importantly, Neil Young is in no position to declare what is valid information in regards to COVID, vaccines, or damn near anything remotely scientific.
He is neither a virologist nor an epidemiologist. Rather, he’s a talented musician whose brain has endured years of drug-addled hard living.
That being said, Rogan is no more a scientist than Young. But last I checked he wasn’t demanding adherence to any point of view; he merely raised important questions that need to be answered via the knowledge of actual experts.
You know, like the rest of us.
Despite our often very strong opinions about certain scientific issues, most of us have very little actual scientific knowledge to back up those opinions.
How many climate crusaders understand the true risks of nuclear power? And how many climate naysayers have studied the role of ocean currents in dictating global temperatures?
The answer to both, if we are being honest, is virtually none.
Rather, we take stances on such issues via a small network of trusted sources. Friends, websites, Fox News, CNN, podcasts, and sadly, sometimes entertainers.
Which is precisely why Young’s hostility toward Rogan is so confusing.
While Neil may find Rogan’s sources suspicious, as is his right, he is siding with a cabal of “experts” whose record on COVID, and nearly everything else, has been so disastrous that it would be comical were it not tragic.
If you find Rogan guest Dr. Robert Malone’s citing of “mass formation psychosis” questionable, wait until you find out who still thinks the virus came from a bat.
It’s Young’s, not Rogan’s, information sources who championed the disastrous lockdowns that ruined the lives of millions, sent suicide rates skyrocketing, and gave us our current runaway inflation nightmare, all while doing nothing to contain the virus.
These same “experts” repeatedly dismissed therapies such as Ivermectin and monoclonal antibodies in an effort to push the vaccine. But an increasing amount of research is validating the idea that these therapies can save lives in the fight against COVID.
There’s been plenty of misinformation spread alright, albeit not by Joe Rogan.
Rather it’s Neil’s side that deals in questionable facts and half-cooked theories, as they are ideal instruments for increasing their political power and strengthening their grip on society.
You know, the type of thing Young himself once railed against.