How does this deadly nonsense continue?

Have you no decency, Joe Rogan? Here we go again, with the popular podcaster peddling another conspiracy theory.

Joe Rogan’s streak of terrible COVID-19 takes continued this week when he baselessly suggested the White House faked President Joe Biden’s booster shot on live TV out of fear that he could have dropped dead in the moment.

After Biden took questions from reporters while he received his third dose of the Pfizer jab earlier this week, Rogan used his massively popular Spotify podcast to wonder aloud if it was a “real booster.”

When his guest, former CIA officer Mike Baker agreed, suggesting that it was merely “performance art,” Rogan dug deeper into his latest conspiracy theory.

“I don’t think they would take the chance,” the host said. “I think if they were going to give him a booster shot, the last thing they would do is give it to him live on television. What if he dies? What if he blacks out? What if he gets it and faints? Because people have had very bad reactions, like in the moment, for whatever reason.”

Such nonsense. This is a common trope, pretending that the vaccine is actively harmful. It’s not. Claiming that is leads to horrific situations like this, in which an evil quack goes into a hospital and lies to an elderly man suffering with COVID-19.

Watch as 67-year old Joe McCarron, hospitalized with Covid-19 in Ireland, is urged by a fanatical anti-vaxxer and covid-denier to check himself out of the hospital while a doctor calmly, kindly, and patiently explains why that would not be a good idea for someone in his condition and urges him to stay, saying that he was very ill and could die if he went home. But the person with McCarron badgered him to leave and he finally acquiesced. Two days later, he was back in the hospital with breathing problems and subsequently died.

The quack, Antonio Mureddu Gravegliu, literally told the man that the hospital was going to kill him. The Garda are “investigating”, I don’t know what — they’ve got the guy recorded lying to the patient and urging him to leave the hospital’s care.

Rogan is part of the chain of chaos and death. Why isn’t he being investigated?


  1. brucegee1962 says

    Why can’t some of these personal injury lawyers who seem to be everywhere in this country justify their existence and launch a group civil suit against all of these loons on behalf of the families of everybody who has died because they listened to all this terrible advice? They might have to do some venue shopping, but it wouldn’t be that hard to launch the suit someplace with a sympathetic jury. Take Carlson and Fox News for everything they’ve got, up to and including the clip-on ties.

  2. raven says

    Here is my Covid-19 virus vaccine story.
    Nothing happened.
    A sore arm that I had to think about to notice that went away in a few days.
    This is common.
    3 out of 4 vaccine recipients don’t have any significant side effects.
    Except for Sore Arm, 3 Out of 4 People Didn’t Report COVID-19 Vaccine Side Effects

  3. raven says

    We’ve all seen the common antivaxxer meme.

    followed by

    Strangely enough, they are afraid though.
    Very afraid of a Hi Tech vaccine with very low side effects that can save them from death or serious permanent disability.

    That they are not afraid of the Covid-19 virus is just cosmically stupid.
    Some things you should be afraid of as a matter of common sense and survival. I’m afraid of rattlesnakes, alligators, heart disease, cancer, fundie xian terrorists, Donald Trump, GOPers, and antivaxxers overfilling our hospitals.

  4. Doc Bill says

    I got the booster and dropped dead!

    Oh, wait, I didn’t.

    My reaction was the same as Jab #2: mild chills the morning after and a day of malaise. Actually, malaise is my normal day before coffee, but Pfizer Malaise is a 24-hour fog. Reminds me of Philosophy 101 back in the day. Anyway, the next day I was my old curmudgeonly self, shouting at clouds.

  5. foolishleader says

    That is probably the most fitting image for him I have seen. That is almost exactly the image my brain fills in for the name Joe Rogan.

  6. christoph says

    @ Doc Bill, # 4: I got the second shot back in June, and it turned me into a hideous rampaging mutant.*

    *Didn’t actually happen.

  7. erik333 says

    Here in Sweden, both times i got a vaccin jab, people were expected to to wait sitting in an area where we could be monitored for 15 minutes afterwards. Presumably this wasn’t only to entertain the staff, but that some people might have immediate adverse reactions. I don’t think this was limited to the Pfizer vaccine however, as there were three differend brands at least being administered, maybe they would’ve used the same procedure for placebo as well. shrug

  8. Akira MacKenzie says

    ave you no decency, Joe Rogan?

    Rogan could conceivably respond one of two ways:

    1) “Who needs decency when you’re got money?”

    2) (Drug-addled stupor) “Whhhaaaa?”

  9. Jake Wildstrom says

    Presumably this wasn’t only to entertain the staff, but that some people might have immediate adverse reactions.
    That’s the standard practice here in America as well. But while adverse reactions are possible, they’re pretty rare, and also typically have a delayed onset. I’m sure that Psaki (or her team, or whoever was publicizing the event) had a “Five minutes after the shot, Joe isn’t feeling too good” plan if they needed to hustle him off the stage to recover.

    As for the risk of immediate bad effects? As I understand it, syncope is a possible reaction to any injection at all (regardless of what it’s of), but is a lot rarer for intramuscular instead of intravenous, and is pretty damn rare to begin with except among those who have a pre-existing disposition to faint when injected. The likelihood of that happening is so low (given that Biden has presumably not previously shown any such predisposition) that their energy would be better spent on purely random catastrophic health occurrences than any immediate bad result of an injection.

  10. says

    Off topic, but our Spider-king’s powers are great and terrible. Shortly after he left FB, the whole thing is down today.

  11. mamba says

    #11, Here in Canada it’s the same thing, though I was talking to one of the nurses while waiting my 15 minutes, and they told me that the MOST COMMON reaction they see is people feeling faint or heart racing or sweating or anxiety.

    The catch? The patients ALL had those symptoms BEFORE THEY GAVE THE SHOT! The nurse was telling me that 9 times out of 10 the person’s approaching the chair sweaty and nervous and absolutely convinced they were going to die or something. So of course the placebo effect kicks in and suddenly their heart is racing and they feel tingly and faint! For them, the waiting period was to get them reassured mostly…they they go home no issues after talking to staff.

    As for ACTUAL REAL reactions? At the clinic I was at run by the hospital itself, they say maybe 5…all passed within minutes.

  12. says


    Reactions are very personal. A colleague of mine got the same Janssen vaccin a day later than I got it.

    I felt a little bit tired about a day later. (Nothing that a good night’s sleep couldn’t fix, though.)

    He took a sick day and spent it in bed.

    I’m pretty sure I had vaccinations that were worse when I was little; smallpox comes to mind. According to my parents, I definitely didn’t enjoy that one, even though I don’t really remember it. Like everybody of my generation, I still have the scar.

  13. robro says

    I think the 15 minute waits after the jab are for severe anaphylaxis reactions, which are different from the malaise the day after you get the shot and more dangerous. The caution might be the result of the not fully tested status of the vaccines, but I don’t know that for certain. I’ve never had a wait for the flue, shingrix, or pneumonia shots.

  14. notaandomposter says

    would it surprise me terribly if the pres got his vaccine booster the day before and they chose to inject saline for the photo op? not really. publicity photos are staged in various ways all the time. (and in this particular instance there is no reason to doubt that the president got his booster, nor that he did it live on camera- like I said it wouldn’t surprise me- but why bother?) It’s the reason posited by Rogan and his ilk that is BS. Any side effect wouldn’t be instantaneous enough to justify faking the photoshoot (adverse reactions take a few minutes to a few days – and the media’s attention span is shorter than that -there’s nothing to see here) – the mundane reasons to stage the shot (bad lighting, convenience, security etc.) vs. “the real shot might instantly kill you'”

    there won’t be any consequences for Rogan – 1st amendment and all that – until he actually gives (what a court sees as) medical advice, then he’s practicing medicine without a licensee- until then the defense so often put out the by political commentators will be used: ” a reasonable observer wouldn’t believe he was stating a fact, so not liable for what was said”

  15. Pierce R. Butler says

    … his guest, former CIA officer Mike Baker agreed…

    How far does this go towards explaining US foreign policy/covert ops over the last few decades?

  16. christoph says

    @ Pierce R. Butler, # 17: The operative word for “former CIA officer” is “former.” Wouldn’t be the first time a (presumably incompetent) and former CIA officer used the prestige of his former position to hawk BS. There’s a former CIA officer with an ad on YouTube peddling an unarmed combat system guaranteed to give you victory in any situation.

  17. says

    I had a very unpleasant reaction to the second shot, but if they start dispensing boosters, I am going for one. I will trade one-two days of feeling crappy for the risk of several weeks of feeling crappy with possible permanent health damage, or even death, any time.

    Here in CZ there was too a waiting room for people who received the shots, where we were told to wait 15 minutes. I did not inquire about whether something happened to someone or not, but I can say nothing happened at either of my or my parent’s shots. Just a room full of bored people looking at their phones and buggering off as soon as possible. There was also nothing in the news about anyone collapsing in these waiting rooms whatsoever.

    But the quacks with their nonsense-peddling were successful here too, unfortunately. Only about 55% of people got their vaccination and then the numbers stopped rising, indicating that about 30% of our population are idiots. The remaining 15% are people under 12 years and those with legitimate medical reasons to not get vaccinated.

  18. Drew Needham says

    On the bright side, Facebook seems to have put itself in Facebook jail to hide from the blowback that resulted from the whistle blowers coming out last night.

  19. unclefrogy says

    there are questions that arise about this particular “ex CIA” guy as well.
    why is he not still active CIA, does his politics effect what he is saying, is he also pushing a book,
    I would suspect anyone who is a guest on this pod cast of not being objective at the least as well as having some personnel ax to grind.

  20. whheydt says

    My experience with the “sit and wait after the shot” has applied to all vaccinations in recent years, including flu vaccine.

    However, because I have a known adverse drug reaction (it’s to albuterol, which has NOTHING in common with vaccines), they made me wait 30 minutes. So my advice is, bring a book.

    (When discovered, the albuterol reaction would have killed me–it shut down my breathing–if I hadn’t already been in a post-op cardiac intensive care ward.)

  21. says

    The maxim goes, “if it bleeds, it leads”. But in the case of fake vaccine panic, we could say “if it scares, it shares”.

    Taiwan’s substandard “news” have been playing up the panic for months. There have been deaths after vaccinations, but like this trash headline from June finally admits at the end, the man had a history of strokes before dying of a heart attack, post-vaccination. The CECC have investigated all the deaths after vaccination, and all involved elderly people already in poor health. None were or could be attributed to a vaccine.

    To which all the local anti-vaxxer twits reply “coverup!” I really hope the foreigners who do this get deported.

  22. slithey tove (twas brillig (stevem)) says

    I too had to sit for 15 minutes after the 2 doses. I didn’t ask why, just took it as “just in case”.
    After 2nd dose, my arm was sore and felt generally unsettled, for a day. 2nd day after, all of nothin.
    Even so, still cannot understand the hesitancy. The side effects are far less than the disease itself.
    Why take the risk when the cost of safety is so low?
    I try making analogies, and give up; knowing no one will listen, or change their mind.

    One thing I see, reading too much into it, is people have trouble comparing risks. The risk of harm from the vaccine versus the risk of catching the disease are difficult to quantify, my impression is they are orders of magnitude different, vaccine risk being far smaller.

    rambling now, oh well, see ya later

  23. PaulBC says

    raven@2 After the second Moderna shot, I spent over a day with worse chills and aches than I normally get with the flu. I went for a walk hoping to shake it off and found myself a half mile from hope desperately wanting to get home and into bed, so I turned around and dragged myself back… slowly.

    Anyway, it was well worth it, and I would have been skeptical I made any antibodies otherwise. I avoided taking any Tylenol, though maybe that was superstitious. My daughter, who’s immune-suppressed, felt fine, but she also didn’t make any antibodies until she eventually got a booster.

  24. PaulBC says

    “a half mile from hope” should say “a half mile from home” (though I like the phrase; I will need to find a use for it)

  25. says

    I just responded to a spotify email promotion by telling them I’ve deleted spotify from all my devices and told them why. I’ve been thinking about focusing on either pandora or spotify and this fool helped me decide.

  26. Koshka says

    A few years back when I got the flu shot, they asked me to hang around for 15 minutes. I was going to ignore this when a young woman who go the shot 5 minutes before me fell down, taking a display case with her. She was okay. I think ther needle had freeked her out a bit. After seeing this I am happy to wait 15 minutes to make sure all is good.

  27. nomadiq says

    Once again conspiracy theorists fail to use Occam’s Razor. The simplest explanation for why Biden would get a booster shot live on camera is that the chances of an adverse reaction are so unbelievably small it’s more likely that at that same moment he could just naturally stroke out or have a heart attack (he is old after all). Getting the vaccine is so incredibly safe you have to go to incredible lengths to deny it – fuck these people’s motivated reasoning.

  28. says

    When his guest, former CIA officer Mike Baker agreed, suggesting that it was merely “performance art,” Rogan dug deeper into his latest conspiracy theory.

    What’s funny about this to me is that I would call it standard conservative projection. I figured when Rogan claimed to have contracted COVID, he was lying. And when he claimed to have kicked it after just a couple of days of horse paste, that reinforced my skepticism. Talk about your ‘performance art.’

  29. tuatara says

    So, Rogan believes that….

    …people have had very bad reactions, like in the moment, for whatever reason.

    Sounds like Rogan is scared of a little needle. Fear is obviously a factor for him.

  30. gromflake says

    Perhaps it’s time for Spotify to have a think about deplatforming people with such dangerous views? It would be socially responsible and might save them from losing a few customers, either from unsubscribing from the service, or from dying of covid.

  31. PaulBC says

    I think it’s high time we stopped talking about deplatforming and moved on to defenestration. (Note to the powers that be: just kidding.)

  32. snarkrates says

    Paul BC, Look, I’m not a violent man, but I think anything below a third-floor window ought to still be on the table.

  33. Jazzlet says

    snarkrates American or English third floor? (We start with the floor on the ground and call it … the ground floor, so American second floor is our first floor …)

    I couldn’t even find where the needle had gone in for either of my vaccinations, not even by prodding to find a sore spot.

  34. blf says

    @41, I suggest a compromise: Use whichever definition of “third floor” you like, just make sure there is a deep pit (ideally with spikes) below the chosen window. Or a moat filled with hungry alligators.

  35. Ed Seedhouse says

    @26: ‘“a half mile from hope” should say “a half mile from home” (though I like the phrase; I will need to find a use for it)’

    Check a map. There is a “Hope” in British Columbia for example, and I wouldn’t be surprised if it were a fairly common name for a town. I have been literally a half mile from Hope on many occasions since most of the main roads from the west cost to the interior go right through it.

  36. DanDare says

    I get annoyed at the dismissal of vaxxine caution. I think it makes people less trusting.
    I especially hate “I got the jab and I’m fine”. If the jab actually killed 80% of its recipients that comment would still be true.
    Here in Oz the government is hot to trot on Astrazennecca. Our drugs administration keeps stats and shows that 1 in 50k patients have a thrombosis event within 30 days. That is not insignificant. If you had that stat for car trips we would have over 150k near fatal car accidents a year. We actualy have less than 20k.
    Some people compare AZ danger to sky diving. I don’t care. I compare it to taking Moderna or Phizer. I get my Phizer jab on Friday as does my 26yo daughter. My wife gets hers next Teusday.
    I’m still getting shrill SMS from the government saying I must get an AZ today. They can stick it where the sun don’t shine.

  37. John Morales says

    DanDare, your point is well-made, however, you are ignoring the baseline.

    Every year 30,000 Australians develop thrombosis(1, 2), including deep vein thrombosis (DVT) and pulmonary embolism (PE), costing the Australian health system $3.8 billion per year in today’s value(3). Blood clots are responsible for the top three cardiovascular killers: stroke, heart attack, and VTE. In Australia, there is one stroke every 10 minutes, and an average of 21 Australians die from a heart attack each day(4). Blood clots are responsible for an estimated 10% of all deaths in Australia, and yet up to 70% of these are preventable(5).


    Australia’s population is 25.7 million, so the population likelihood of a thrombosis event in any case is 58 per 50,000 (incidence ÷ population × 50,000).

    (Quite a bit more than 1)

  38. DanDare says

    John that is true however the administration does attempt to screen out the coincidental thrombosis events in their stats. Especially filtering out by age and health. Obviously they can’t rule out some portion of the recorded events being likely regardless of the AZ jab.
    Anyway, since I tend to be afraid of travelling in a plane and think its worth buying lottery tickets its not surprising I am unhappy about the thought of AZ. Since I have a choice to pick a jab that doesn’t scare me I choose that.
    Having the government yell at me about my choice is irritating.
    And of I didn’t have a choice I’d take the AZ.

  39. John Morales says

    Fair enough, DD. As I wrote, your point is well-made.

    I myself had the AZ some months ago, but that’s because I wanted to get vaccinated ASAP.