The other day Joe Rogan went viral after a clip circulated from his recent 3-hour podcast with academic intellectual Eric Weinstein. Eric, the brother of Bret Weinstein, an equally well-known figure in the world of online academia, is a mathematician and economist. 

The clip that went viral found Rogan hypothesizing that he would vote for Trump over Biden. However there is a lot more worth unpacking from the long-form conversation, as Weinstein discusses the approach used by the government during this pandemic. In particular, Weinstein takes issues with the way the government is approaching the use of masks, or perhaps better put, the lack thereof, for certain persons that actually need masks the most.

It is an interesting point, and honestly a scary fact to think about, regarding people who work in hospitals and prisons being told they are not allowed to wear masks (!) despite the fact that a mask would definitely help protect anyone from COVID-19. There have been reports as recent as last week that confirm that corrections officers are not allowed to wear a mask, or bring masks into work with them. This fact was echoed in the recent message Taxstone shared on his twitter last week-- he confirmed that Riker's Island corrections officers are not wearing masks or any sort of protective gear at all, risking infection of themselves and the prisoners. At the same time, NPR reports how hospitals are not letting hospital workers wear masks, despite the obvious fact that people in hospitals would need them the most, especially considering that we now know that the more a person is exposed to this virus, the worse their infection often is. The reasoning as to why these hospital workers are not allowed to wear a mask, or bring their own mask, is entirely unclear, and apparently changes every time someone asks. 

"Civil disobedience," Eric Weinstein urges during the episode. 

"The fact that these people [who work in hospitals and prisons] are told they can't talk to the press, and they write to me, 'my mother was asked to do this, my uncle works in the prison, he's not allowed to wear a mask, I send him a mask, he's not allowed to bring a mask.' What the hell is wrong? It is time for these people to resign, and it is time for us to remember that we have the ability to turn over our own government," Weinstein said in response to the masks protocols being touted across the U.S., and the messaging from the government surrounding masks. 

He continued, "We are so unprepared as a nation, and we have been sold out for so long by our self-appointed leadership class, who nobody wants. That we either remember who we are and how this game is played...This is a pre-war footing. The transmission mechanism is that you have everybody stay in doors, because you're worried about deaths of accountability-- which is, I don't think they're worried about the number of deaths, I think they're worried about deaths that result from triage, and would result in career-ending action. And then, if we all have to stay home while they replenish our supplies, then the economy goes into recession, recession can become depression, depression leads to armed conflict, and armed conflict leads to war-- that would be a transmission mechanism, from these stupid masks, to stop something that nobody can handle."

"It is time to revolt. This leadership class is unworkable," Weinstein claims.

He added later, "They know that the people who need them [masks] most, have very weird rules. There's this whole thing about the States versus the federal government, there's this thing about price gouging. There's all sorts of things that are stopping this mask thing from being sorted out."

"Twitter said we will now be removing tweets if you contradict official authoritative health sources. So that's just what I did: surgeon general is lying, CDC is lying, World Health Organization is lying. Come at me," Weinstein threatened, getting his rap beef lingo on.

The entire conversation is not fully centered on COVID-19 talk, but it's heavy within the first hour of the podcast episode. Check out the full episode below.