Kicking off this series honouring modern-day dissidents, heretics and dangerous thinkers is the always thoughtful, always affable and genuinely curious Dave Rubin. Condemned by louder sections of the chattering classes as some sort of gateway drug to political extremism, Rubin is one of the most popular and laid-back linchpins of a cultural phenomenon which has become known as the intellectual dark web.
Describing himself as a classical liberal, Rubin's philosophical and political journey has been followed and replicated by thousands of men and women throughout Western society over the last two decades. The numbers are climbing by the day.
As a one-time panellist and contributor for the extremely progressive Young Turks Network, Rubin has spoken at length about his personal development from progressive firebrand to fierce critic of identity politics and passionate defender of individual rights. Always thoughtful, kind and intellectually curious, his long form interviews on the Rubin Report are some of the most watched, commented on and beloved political content on YouTube, although he's also branching out onto other platforms such as Bitchute because not even an openly gay married man is safe from the ideological outrage mob that stalks our society in search of victims to lynch and lives to ruin.
The popularity of the Rubin Report proves there is a growing appetite for the kind of serious and honest intellectual debate which has been almost entirely absent from mainstream news for some time. Realising that there was a yawning gap in the ideas market, Rubin has dared to sit down with many intellectual movers and shakers who simply do not trust the mainstream press to give them a fair hearing and a reasonably balanced exploration of their ideas.
This is why shows like the Rubin Report are the cutting-edge of a rapidly developing and maturing alternative media that will not be censored, silenced or browbeaten by the political and media establishment. This is why other heretics like Ben Shapiro, James O'Keefe, Candace Owens and Tim Pool are only too pleased to chat with Dave in his high spec home studio. They do so because they know he has no interest in gotcha journalism, having been excoriated, misrepresented and outright libelled by more than one card-carrying “journalist.”
And the establishment wonders why trust in the mainstream media is at an all-time low.
Having seen the machine from the inside, Rubin knows only too well that there's something rotten at the core of our cultural, economic and political settlement; and he's fearless in trying to understand the powerful cultural and intellectual forces that are shifting beneath the surface and making their presence felt in every aspect of our lives.
Although the Rubin Report is hugely popular online, it's a five minute history of Dave's personal intellectual journey which has netted him the most supporters and detractors. His five-minute video for PragerU entitled Why I Left the Left has netted an impressive ten million views so far, while his follow-up on the subject of tolerance is catching up fast with six million plus.
In the final equation, Dave Rubin is a genuinely nice guy with a genuinely open mind. However, that mild manner hides a steel spine as he's fearless in saying what he thinks but also humble enough to change his mind. His discussion with Larry Elder regarding systemic racism is legendary.
Whether he wanted it or not, Dave Rubin has become something of a figurehead and unofficial spokesman for the intellectual dark web community, neatly encapsulating many complex philosophical and political ideas into an intellectually and morally coherent world view.
No wonder the establishment wishes he would just go away.
If anyone reading this is wondering just what the hell is happening to the world right now, then by far the best place to find answers is to turn off the TV, unplug the phone and watch whichever episode of the Rubin Report takes your fancy. Just remember that there's no going back once you've heard a heretic speak the truth.
No wonder the establishment has always hated heretics so.