For some reason, perhaps out of boredom or curiosity, I found myself following Joe Rogan’s twitter account. Because I do not have an actual titter account, by follow, what I mean is, I kept a Chrome browser tab open of his account, which I periodically refreshed.
After about a week of this, it occurred to me that Mr. Rogan tweets very little, in spite of being someone who has positioned himself as a prominent commentator of the ‘culture wars,’ and whose podcast centers around topical events, such as a recent interview with Douglas Murray in which they discuss the Portland riots, among other things. So you would think he would do way more tweeting, but he is surprisingly taciturn, only tweeting a handful of times over the past week, mostly to promote episodes of his podcast or to correct things he got wrong (such as in regard fires in Portland). Contrast that to Trump, who doesn’t go for more more than 6 hours without tweeting, and who sometimes fires off as many as six or more tweets in rapid succession, in a single sitting.
This week associate justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg died. Both sides are losing their minds over this. Will Trump fill the spot? (who knows) Will Roe v. Wade be overturned? (never, even if Trump were given the carte blanche to pack the court with 9 appointees of his own choosing, no one has the guts to touch the issue) Yet Rogan’s Twitter timeline is bereft of any commentary of her passing–not single mention at all, of what is arguably one of the biggest political stories of of the year. You would think that if anyone would hastily drop their 2 cents on the issue, it would be someone who is as outspoken as Joe Rogan, but nothing. Maybe he doesn’t know the issue well enough to have an opinion. And because most opinions are bad or wrong, by virtue of the fact that people’s understanding of issues is at best superficial, or at worst, wrong (usually based off of something heard from someone else, without any attempt at independently verifying the claim,) there is something refreshing about someone who withholds having or voicing an opinion, and thus further fanning the flames of the culture wars, even if under pressure to do so.
I have also observed that the smartest of guests, typically scientists, physicists, tech entrepreneurs (such as Elon Musk), and also IDW-pundits (such as Ben Shapiro, Tim Pool, Douglas Murray), tend to get the best reception in terms of positive feedback in the comments and up-vote/down-vote ratio, whereas politicians, nutritionists, actors, comics, and activists tend to get a more lukewarm reception. Smart guests are able to converse about a wide range of topics, and can take the show in any direction they or Joe pleases, whereas less intelligent guests are limited to their profession/domain of expertise, and cannot stray far from it without sounding naive. It is hard to imagine someone like Roger Stone conversing intelligibly about quantum physics, but a omni-genius such as Eric Weinstein can easily converse about the stuff Roger Stone talks about.
Eric Weinstein has to be the smartest person I have ever heard on a podcast or when hosting his own podcast, The Portal. His understanding of math, physics, history, culture (everything pretty much) is unrivaled by any guest or host. Sam Harris , Dave Rubin, Jordan Peterson, etc are smart, but Eric Weinstein uses terms like “gauge theory” in conversation with such ease and familiarity despite it being a very complicated math concept. His breadth of knowledge is just so vast. I remember him in a half hour segment talk about wresting, then talk about music, and then topology, etc. He spoke about the Supreme Court, such as Bork and his theory of how the fall of the Warren Court is the progenitor of modern far-left liberalism. It should just be Eric interviewing himself and do a podcast about that, because he is the only person who is his intellectual equal.
There was also a recent episode featuring MIT AI expert Lex Fridman, and the first half hour or so they discuss everything but AI, such as ’60s rock and roll. They guy knows everything, similar to Eric discussing wrestling, and then switching to gauge theory and the Supreme Court. It just goes to show how smart people tend to have a very broad stores of knowledge, contrary to the belief that smart people tend to only be specialists; yes, maybe they are specialists in so far as their work is concerned, but they are generalists in terms of knowledge.