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“”I'm a classical liberal, a free thinker. And as much as I don't like to admit it, defending my liberal values has suddenly become a conservative position.
|—Dave Rubin, in a video collaboration with Prager U|
“”The Last Liberal
|—tagline on his Twitter page; we wish we were joking|
David Joshua "Dave" Rubin (born 1976) is a former progressive-turned-"classical liberal" and host of The Rubin Report on YouTube. Once a member of The Young Turks network, his content since leaving TYT has mostly been steered towards criticism of what he considers the 'regressive left'. On his show, he frequently/interminably discusses freedom of speech, feminism, political correctness and the Mainstream media.
Unfortunately, many of the guests Rubin has invited to his show are known to have ties to far-right movements such as the alt-right, neoreactionaries, Gamergate, and the men's rights movement. And when he does invite guests on the left, it is usually only to complain about "regressivism" (Classical liberalism, amirite?).
As of August 7, 2017, Rubin's YouTube channel has over 490,000 subscribers and over 116 million channel views. Rubin also makes over $27,000 per month on Patreon from over 4300 patrons, and has over 250,000 followers on Twitter.
Following work in stand-up comedy, Rubin began hosting The Six Pack podcast on SiriusXM and joined TYT in 2013. He first gained notoriety for tacitly defending Israel's conduct during their war in Gaza in 2014, coming in conflict with the entire TYT panel on a 40-minute-long debate. He later repeated this same defense of Israeli war crimes and regurgitating of anti-Palestinian propaganda to Secular Talk. In hindsight, this was our first real look into just how reactionary he always was.
In spite of supposedly being against 'safe spaces' and a proponent of debate, he decided to leave TYT in 2015 following political disagreements with Cenk Uygur. His show bounced between a series of formats and production companies (OraTV being one of them) before becoming an independent project in 2016. He now hosts his show from a "home studio" that looks like one of the fake living rooms in IKEA.
Views (and hypocrisy)
Identity politics and free speech
Rubin, who spends much of his time lamenting identity politics, claims to have worked as a stand-up comedian in New York from the late 90s. Little video evidence of this work is available online, besides one video from 'Hot Gay Comics' in which Rubin makes a series of bad jokes about gays and being gay. Rubin went on to host The Six Pack, a gay-themed podcast with topics such as National Coming Out Day, on SiriusXM and gay guests like Dustin Lance Black and Lance Bass (of NSync fame). But, remember - Rubin is completely against identity politics. Hrm.
Rubin claims that he was "barely out [of the closet as gay] at 27" and was hiding his appreciation of Queer as Folk from his college roommates. Ironically for a talk show host who advocates for free speech and claims that self-censorship is also troublesome, he seems to have spent a lot of time self-censoring an aspect of his identity that was the cornerstone of his early career. Free speech advocate Rubin, who has commented on a culture of "Oppression Olympics" from minority groups and has dismissed numerous controversies as "outrage culture", also posted a video criticising the "gay jokes" in Comedy Central's James Franco roast. This hypocrisy was best surmised when Rubin criticised Hillary Clinton for addressing a tweet to "White America", in spite of the fact that he has previously posted numerous tweets ridiculing people based on their whiteness. Without a trace of self-awareness regarding his own light-hearted jests on the matter, he later lambasted the 'regressive left' and their alleged proclivity to "demonize white people collectively and endlessly".
In spite of being critical of members of the "regressive left" that smear and name-call instead of debating ideas, Rubin enjoys insulting his own opponents via Twitter (his favourite slurs include "loser" and "clown").
Further proving his hypocrisy over free speech and how words can't hurt you, Rubin threatened to sue Mother Jones author Josh Harkinson for libel over an article titled "Cashing in on the Rise of the Alt-Right", where he is mentioned among various alt-right figures, some of whom (like Mike Cernovich, Lauren Southern, and Milo Yiannopolous) were feature guests on his show. Harkinson later updated the article to include Rubin's objection to the far/alt-right label, in which he says:
Rubin: "Let's do this publicly since that's how you [Harkinson] started it. I'm gay married, pro choice, against death penalty, pro pot legalization. Far right?"
Fake news, outrage culture and boycotts
Rubin has referred to organisations like the New York Times, CNN, the BBC and USA Today as "fake news", even claiming that he "won't watch" CNN as long as it employs Reza Aslan. However, Rubin has claimed that Rebel Media is "doing a pretty good job from everything I've seen", appeared on The Alex Jones Show to talk about the "Cult of the Left" and has featured with Tucker Carlson and Bill O'Reilly on Fox News. Following O'Reilly's firing from the network amidst a series of sexual harassment allegations, Rubin claimed that "the rejoicing of the destruction of public people is becoming increasingly dangerous".
In an uncharacteristic display of double standards, he had previously joked about progressives Keith Olbermann and Alec Baldwin being fired or suspended from TV networks, even going as far as to record himself calling the Capital One customer service line regarding Baldwin's "homophobic" comments and claiming that he had "a discussion with five gay people who all agree to never use [the company's] services again" because of its association with the actor. Free speech, y'know? Quelle suprise - Rubin has been critical of boycotts elsewhere.
Political identity and fiscal policy
"My positions basically haven't changed but I've watched as my team has gone off the deep end", says Rubin on his political ideas. If this is indeed the case, it appears that Rubin has been a conservative the whole time. Case in point, since 2016, Rubin has partnered with Learn Liberty, a project from George Mason University's Institute of Humane Studies, a libertarian think tank that receives part of its funding from the Koch brothers.
This is particularly true regarding "Rubinomics". In news that will shock nobody, Rubin has frequently espoused conservative positions in regards to taxation and claims that limited government is an issue about which he cares most. He has argued against raises to the minimum wage, claiming that it will force McDonalds to replace workers with iPads, and has been a critic of the estate tax. He has advocated for flat income taxes due to his belief in "real equality", with "some level" of progressive tax. None of these are progressive positions that the Left has suddenly abandoned.
In chastising the "regressive left", Rubin claims that "if you don't evolve the day they evolve, you're a bigot". However, when confronted with evidence of his previous progressive views on Twitter and accused of hypocrisy, Rubin defended himself by stating that "my feelings have changed as time has gone on", asserting that "[p]eople evolve, it's called being human. But some would rather attack" without a hint of irony. So it seems that the real rule is "if you don't evolve the day Dave Rubin evolves, you're a regressive".
Rubin also thinks he supports single-payer health care. We say "think" because Rubin thinks single-payer is a combination of public and private. He has doubled-down on this misunderstanding/ignorance of what single-payer actually is.
In recent years, Rubin's show has become a platform for relatively obscure individuals from far-flung corners of the Internet to espouse bizarre or downright extreme opinions with little to no recourse or push-back from the host. For instance, claims from guests that the Canadian Nazi Party was "backed up and egged on" by Jewish groups to increase hate crimes and suggestions that Barack Obama is a communist have gone unchallenged by Rubin.
Whilst decrying the so-called "regressive left" at every turn, Rubin has described guest Tommy Robinson, the former head of the far-right English Defence League with a string of violent and non-violent criminal convictions to his name, as "extremely moderate". Rubin has taken to Twitter to complain that his YouTube videos have been demonetized and his Amazon affiliation deactivated; it's almost as if advertisers and corporations want nothing to do with a show that allows ideologues to spout egregious views and get away with it scot-free.
Rubin is notorious for asking a series of big names onto his show through direct tweets. Many individuals ranging from the political sphere - Donald Trump, Hillary Clinton, Ivanka Trump, Kellyanne Conway, Bernie Sanders, - to the celebrity world - Cher, Carrie Fisher (RIP), Betty White, Howard Stern, Azealia Banks, Ben Affleck - have been invited in this manner. Shockingly, none of these high profile people have taken up the invitation to appear on a low-rent YouTube show recorded at someone's house and, despite Rubin's best efforts, the vast majority of his guests are fringe characters from niche corners of the internet (or even - in possibly his most narcissistic move yet - the show's own fans).
Notable guests from the New Center™
- Sam Harris
- Maajid Nawaz
- Milo Yiannopoulos
- Ayaan Hirsi Ali
- Douglas Murray
- Christina Hoff Sommers
- Peter Boghossian
- Ali Rizvi
- Larry Elder
- Michael Shermer
- Tommy Robinson
- Sargon of Akkad
- Ben Shapiro
- Gad Saad
- Mike Cernovich
- Paul Joseph Watson
- Steven Crowder
- Adam Carolla
- Dinesh D'Souza
- Blaire White
- Tim Pool
- Scott Adams
- Jesse Ventura
- Karen Straughan (of Honey Badger Radio infamy)
- That Guy T
- Chris "Ray Gun" Maldonaldo
- Jordan B. Peterson
- Cathy Young
- Cassie Jaye
- Dennis Prager
- Glenn Beck
- Lauren Southern
- Armoured Skeptic
- David Horowitz
- Tommy Sotomayor
- Brigitte Gabriel
- Bret Weinstein
- Laci Green
- Bill Whittle (of Pajamas Media)
- Katie Hopkins
- Richard Dawkins
- Sargon of Akkad - His (slightly crazier) British counterpart.
- Milo Yiannopoulos- His occasional partner-in-crime. Rubin has teamed up with him on his "Dangerous Faggot" tour and was even featured in an episode of his webshow when he was still at Breitbart.
- Sam Harris - Rubin is a fan.
- "PragerU: Why I Left the Left" (Feb. 6, 2017), YouTube
- Dave Rubin's Twitter page
- YouTube's About page on The Rubin Report
- Rubin Report's Patreon page
- The Young Turks: "Heated Israel-Palestine Discussion Erupts Into Passion & Honesty" (August 1, 2014), YouTube
- Secular Talk: "Kyle & Dave Rubin Debate Israel/Palestine & More!" (September 27, 2015), YouTube
- "ReasonTV: Dave Rubin's Political Awakening" (March 29, 2017), YouTube
- The Six Pack: "Gay is Awesome" (October 10, 2010), Vimeo
- The Rubin Report: "Sky Williams: Black! Gay! Gamer! Talking Black Lives Matter, SJW’s, & Victim Culture (YouTube Week)" (March 8, 2017), YouTube
- The Rubin Report: "Outrage Culture is Becoming Mainstream Culture" (March 15, 2017), YouTube
- The Rubin Report: "James Franco Roast: So Many Gay Jokes" (September 26, 2013), YouTube
- The Rubin Report: "Dave Rubin: Am I a Secret Conservative?" (April 5, 2017), YouTube
- "Cashing in on the Rise of the Alt-Right" (June 26, 2017), Mother Jones
- "Mother Jones Smears Liberal Talk-Show Host Dave Rubin for Daring to Interview ‘Alt-Right’ Figures" (June 20, 2017), National Review
- "Liberal Pundit Dave Rubin Accuses Mother Jones of ‘Libel’ for Falsely Labeling Him ‘Far Right’" (June 17, 2017), Heat Street
- "Mother Jones vs. Dave Rubin" (June 20, 2017), American Thinker
- The Alex Jones Channel: "Dave Rubin Joins Infowars LIVE To Talk About The Cult Of The Left" (March 9, 2017), YouTube
- "Political commentator: Why I'm no longer a progressive" (February 15, 2017), Fox News
- Dave Rubin Talks ‘Chick-Fil-A Appreciation Day’ With Bill O’Reilly (VIDEO) (August 2, 2012), HuffPo
- The Rubin Report: "The Left is No Longer Liberal." (January 25, 2017), YouTube
- "The Rubin Report and Learn Liberty Fight for Free Speech" (September 21, 2016), Learn Liberty
- The Rubin Report: "Live with Dave After the Presidential Debate" (September 26, 2016), YouTube
- The Rubin Report: "Mark Pellegrino and Dave Rubin discuss Capitalism and the Role of Government (full episode)" (May 27, 2016), YouTube
- "Hey this is Dave Rubin, let's talk about Classical Liberalism." (June 22, 2017), Reddit
- Tom Bloke's post:
Bloke: "[A]nd here is @Lauren_Southern saying a Jewish group helped start the Canadian Nazi Party because they wanted more hate crimes"
- The Rubin Report: "David Horowitz and Dave Rubin: Communism, Trump, and Leaving the Left (Full Interview)" (March 17, 2017), YouTube
- Another post from Bloke's Twitter:
Bloke: "Rubin says Tommy Robinson strikes him as 'extremely moderate'. Tommy Robinson confirmed for The New Center™"
- The Rubin Report: "The Rubin Report Fan Show! (All 20 Interviews)" (May 20, 2016), YouTube
- The Rubin Report: "Rubin Report Fan Show: South Carolina, Sweden, Cambodia, Hungary, New Zealand (1)" (May 1, 2017), YouTube
- The Rubin Report: "Rubin Report Fan Show: Jordan, NYC, UK, Germany, California (2)" (May 2, 2017), YouTube
- The Rubin Report: "Rubin Report Fan Show: Tennessee, Canada, Brazil, Israel, Kyrgyzstan (3)" (May 3, 2017), YouTube
- The Rubin Report: "Rubin Report Fan Show: Czech Republic, Texas, Gulf Region, Russia, Australia (4)" (May 4, 2017), YouTube
- The Rubin Report: "Sam Harris and Dave Rubin Talk Religion, Politics, Free Speech (Full Interview)" (September 10, 2015), YouTube
- The Rubin Report: "Sam Harris and Dave Rubin: Islam, Trump, Hillary, and Free Will (Full Interview)" (July 15, 2016), YouTube
- The Rubin Report: "Maajid Nawaz and Dave Rubin Discuss the Regressive Left & Political Correctness (Full Interview)" (October 2, 2015), YouTube
- The Rubin Report: "LIVE with Maajid Nawaz: Muslim Reformers, Islamism, and Combating Extremism" (June 23, 2017), YouTube
- The Rubin Report: "Milo Yiannopoulos and Dave Rubin: Gamergate, Feminism, Atheism, Gay Rights (Full Interview)" (October 9, 2015), YouTube
- The Rubin Report: "Milo Yiannopoulos and Dave Rubin Talk Donald Trump, Censorship, and Free Speech (Full Interview)" (March 25, 2016), YouTube
- The Rubin Report: "LIVE with Milo Yiannopoulos for The Rubin Report Power Hour!" (June 21, 2016), YouTube
- The Rubin Report: "Ayaan Hirsi Ali and Dave Rubin Discuss Her Life, Islam and the Regressive Left (Full Interview)" (October 30, 2015), YouTube
- The Rubin Report: "Ayaan Hirsi Ali and Dave Rubin on Political Islam, Sharia Law, and “Islamophobia” (Full Interview)" (May 10, 2017), YouTube
- The Rubin Report: "Douglas Murray and Dave Rubin Talk Free Speech, ISIS, Israel (Full Interview)" (November 6, 2015), YouTube
- The Rubin Report: "Christina Hoff Sommers and Dave Rubin: Feminism, Free Speech, Gamergate )Full Interview)" (November 27, 2015), YouTube
- The Rubin Report: "Peter Boghossian and Dave Rubin: Critical Thinking, Atheism, and Faith (Full Interview)" (December 18, 2015), YouTube
- The Rubin Report: "Peter Boghossian and Dave Rubin on Postmodernism and Bad Journalism (Full Interview)" (June 23, 2017), YouTube
- The Rubin Report: "Ali Rizvi and Dave Rubin: Atheist Muslim Speaks Out (Full Interview)" (December 24, 2015), YouTube
- The Rubin Report: "Larry Elder and Dave Rubin: Conservatives, Black Lives Matter, Racism (Full Interview)" (January 15, 2016), YouTube
- The Rubin Report: "Larry Elder and Dave Rubin: Real Racism, Trump, Fake News, and More (Full Interview)" (January 27, 2017), YouTube
- The Rubin Report: "Michael Shermer and Dave Rubin: Skepticism, Conspiracy Theories, Libertarians (Full Interview)" (January 22, 2016), YouTube
- The Rubin Report: "Ethics and Morality in the Political Process (Michael Shermer Part 1)" (November 14, 2016), YouTube
- The Rubin Report: "Free Speech and Self Censorship (Michael Shermer Part 2)" (November 14, 2016), YouTube
- The Rubin Report: "Tommy Robinson and Dave Rubin: Islam, Immigration, and Pegida (Full Interview)" (February 5, 2016), YouTube
- The Rubin Report: "Sargon of Akkad and Dave Rubin: Gamergate, Feminism, Regressive Left (Full Interview)" (February 12, 2016), YouTube
- The Rubin Report: "Sargon of Akkad and Dave Rubin: Trump, Libertarians, and the Alt Right (Full Interview)" (December 9, 2016), YouTube
- The Rubin Report: "LIVE with Sargon of Akkad: Internet Trolls and Brexit Polls" (June 20, 2017), YouTube
- The Rubin Report: "Ben Shapiro and Dave Rubin: Conservatism vs Leftism and Free Speech (Full Interview)" (February 19, 2016), YouTube
- The Rubin Report: "Ben Shapiro and Dave Rubin: Trump, the Alt Right, Fake News, and More (Full Interview)" (December 16, 2016), YouTube
- The Rubin Report: "Gad Saad Interview: Sam Harris, Atheism, Political Correctness" (August 8, 2015), YouTube
- The Rubin Report: "Gad Saad and Dave Rubin: Academics, Free Speech, Atheism and Religion (Full Interview)" (February 26, 2016), YouTube
- The Rubin Report: "Dave Rubin, Lalo Dagach, and Gad Saad Discuss Waking Up to The Regressive Left" (February 29, 2016), YouTube
- The Rubin Report: "Dave Rubin, Lalo Dagach, and Gad Saad on Debating The Regressive Left" (February 29, 2016), YouTube
- The Rubin Report: "Dave Rubin and Gad Saad: Censorship, Religion, Secularism (Full Interview)" (August 19, 2016), YouTube
- The Rubin Report: "Gad Saad and Dave Rubin: Psychology of Trump, Men vs Women, and Robotics (Full Interview)" (August 11, 2017), YouTube
- The Rubin Report: "Mike Cernovich and Dave Rubin: Donald Trump and the War on Free Speech (Full Interview)" (March 18, 2016), YouTube
- The Rubin Report: "Paul Joseph Watson and Dave Rubin: Libertarians, Trump, and the Immigration Crisis (full interview)" (April 8, 2016), YouTube
- The Rubin Report: "Steven Crowder and Dave Rubin Talk Trump, Cruz, Abortion, and Climate Change (Full Interview)" (April 12, 2016), YouTube
- The Rubin Report: "Adam Carolla and Dave Rubin talk Comedy, Atheism, and Donald Trump (full interview)" (June 10, 2016), YouTube
- The Rubin Report: "Dinesh D'Souza and Dave Rubin: Hillary Clinton, the Democrats, and Trump (Full Interview)" (July 29, 2016), YouTube
- The Rubin Report: "Blaire White and Dave Rubin: Transgender Debate, Islam, Black Lives Matter (full interview)" (August 12, 2016), YouTube
- The Rubin Report: "LIVE! After The Inauguration of Donald Trump" (January 20, 2017), YouTube
- The Rubin Report: "Interview with Journalist Who Left Milwaukee Due to Racial Violence (Tim Pool)" (August 16, 2016), YouTube
- The Rubin Report: "Antifa and UC Berkeley: LIVE with Tim Pool" (April 17, 2017), YouTube
- The Rubin Report: "LIVE with Tim Pool: Alternative Media, Alternative Facts?" (June 20, 2017), YouTube
- The Rubin Report: "Scott Adams and Dave Rubin: Creating Dilbert, Trumps Tactics, and the Alt Right (Full Interview)" (September 2, 2016), YouTube
- The Rubin Report: "Jesse Ventura and Dave Rubin: Marijuana, Trump and Hillary (Full Interview)" (September 9, 2016), YouTube
- The Rubin Report: "Karen Straughan: Female Men's Rights Activist (YouTube Week)" (September 12, 2016), YouTube
- The Rubin Report: "Thunderf00t: Scientist Criticizing Feminism and Brexit (YouTube Week)" (September 16, 2016), YouTube
- The Rubin Report: "That Guy T: Libertarian, Anti-Feminist, Atheist, Anarcho-Capitalist (YouTube Week)" (September 15, 2016), YouTube
- The Rubin Report: "Chris Ray Gun: Musician Battling Gamergate, Regressive Left and Social Justice (YouTube Week)" (September 14, 2016), YouTube
- The Rubin Report: "Jordan Peterson and Dave Rubin: Gender Pronouns and the Free Speech War (Full Interview)" (November 18, 2016), YouTube
- The Rubin Report: "LIVE with Jordan Peterson: Free Speech, Psychology, Gender Pronouns" (May 5, 2017), YouTube
- The Rubin Report: "Cathy Young on Russia, Putin, Regressive Left, and Alt Right (Full Interview)" (October 14, 2016), YouTube
- The Rubin Report: "Cassie Jaye on Feminism and Men's Rights Activists (Part 1 of 2)" (October 24, 2016), YouTube
- The Rubin Report: "Cassie Jaye on The Red Pill and the Men's Rights Movement (Part 2)" (October 24, 2016), YouTube
- The Rubin Report: "Dennis Prager and Dave Rubin: Religion, Israel, Gay Marriage, and Trump (Full Interview)" (January 20, 2017), YouTube
- The Rubin Report: "Glenn Beck and Dave Rubin on Trump and the "Muslim Ban (Full Interview)" (February 3, 2017), YouTube
- The Rubin Report: "Lauren Southern and Dave Rubin: Milo, Immigration, and Violent Protests (Full Interview)" (March 3, 2017), YouTube
- The Rubin Report: "Armoured Skeptic: Skeptic Tackling Religion, Atheism, and Authoritarians (YouTube Week)" (March 7, 2017), YouTube
- The Rubin Report: "Tommy Sotomayor and Dave Rubin: Racism, the Black Family, and Victimhood (Full Interview)" (April 7, 2017), YouTube
- The Rubin Report: "Brigitte Gabriel and Dave Rubin: Terrorism, The Muslim Brotherhood, and Linda Sarsour" (May 19, 2017), YouTube
- The Rubin Report: "LIVE with Bret Weinstein: Evergreen State College Racism Controversy" (May 30, 2017), YouTube
- The Rubin Report: "Laci Green LIVE: Red Pilling, Sex, and Constructive Dialogue" (July 14, 2017), YouTube
- The Rubin Report: "Bill Whittle and Dave Rubin: Trump, Russia, and the Biased Media (Full Interview)" (July 28, 2017), YouTube
- The Rubin Report: "Katie Hopkins and Dave Rubin: Identity Politics, Islam, and Hate Speech (Full Interview)" (August 4, 2017), YouTube
- The Rubin Report: "Richard Dawkins and Dave Rubin: Live at the 92nd Street Y" (August 9, 2017), YouTube