Elon Musk acts like a spoiled baby on the internet

Elon Musk is breaking the typical billionaire mold … thanks to his spoiled-baby attitude on the internet. Tesla’s CEO has been especially bad this month, although restraint has never been one of his attributes.

22/11/2021

by Molly Roberts
Para The Washington Post

The recent wave of provocations began when he launched a poll in Twitter in which he asked his followers if he should sell 10% of his shares in his electric vehicle company.

The move looked like full democracy in action, but it was likely a feint by an inventor who pretty much behaves equally as a street artist and a tycoon. Musk he had to sell at least $ 10 billion worth of stock to pay a tax bill that expired in the summer and was already a ticking time bomb. The plan, later revealed in documents of the Securities and Exchange Commission, it was arranged in advance.

The richest man in the world then proceeded to tweet a vulgar insult about the profile picture of the senator from United States Ron Wyden (democrat for Oregon), after the legislator called for an income tax for ultra-millionaires. Look it up if you want — the mocking tweet has over 98,000 likes — but suffice it to say, I wasn’t allowed to post it here. Musk brought college humor to preschool levels by abbreviating the words “profile picture” to “pp.” You do not need to specify the details.

To end, Musk lashed out at him senador Bernie Sanders, since a relatively characteristic tweet was taken from the senator of Vermont as a personal attack. “We must demand that the extremely wealthy pay their fair share. Period, ”the 80-year-old independent politician tweeted. “I always forget that you are still alive,” he replied. Musk. Later: “Bernie it does not produce, it only removes ”.

The detail is that the only thing Musk is producing here are problems. For those who attack, of course, but also for him and potentially for his company, whose shares fell almost 20% after the rogue of the survey in Twitter. At least until they started climbing again.

What’s happening here? Musk He has never been an ordinary citizen, but neither is he a tech mogul of the XXI century common. Others don’t do this kind of thing. Mark Zuckerberg You generate controversy (and raise eyebrows) when you use an absurd amount of sunscreen or claim that freedom of expression is important. Jack Dorsey It outrages critics for being heavily involved in what it calls biohacking. Jeff Bezos he wears a cowboy hat after returning from space, or pioneers mass management strategies that result in alarming conditions for his warehouse workers (Jeff Bezos owns the Washington Post).

These scandals and pseudoscandals sometimes have to do with products or aspects of production. Sometimes they are related to the people who control everything, but when that happens, moguls rarely foment the ruckus. In fact, they are very careful about what they show about themselves, as if they have an algorithm that curates not only their platforms but also their personalities. This strategy is safer for business. What’s more, there is a certain prestige in having that condition of “untouchable”. This is how you show that you are at a higher level: by keeping calm and not allowing people to get too close.

But Musk He’s practically begging to be touched: yes, for his adoring fans to kiss his hand, but also for regulators and investors to pull his ears.

Maybe it’s a ingenious and pseudo-rebellious strategy like the rest of the ambitious ideas of Musk. The millionaire sells brand-new cars and crazy adventures in space, but he also sells himself: not in the old and flawless way, but in the new way of the web, where you throw the good, the bad and the ugly into the world. at the same time so that no one can know for sure which parts are genuine and which ones pose. The public is forced, even obsessed, to follow the riddle.

And if the riddle around Musk It is what keeps the financiers betting on him, his magnetism is what keeps his true believers believing. Perhaps the general of this army of fanboys he acts like an internet troll because his soldiers are or resemble that. Billionaires don’t rudely poke fun at little-known lawmakers, but those who make their living on forums like Reddit and 4Chan if they do it. By acting like I’m one of them, Musk He encourages his flock to think that they can become like him, further fueling their devotion. So, of course, it also works to trick them into believing that their financial future depends on their votes via Twitter.

There is always the possibility that this is not – or not exclusively – a strategy, but loneliness: a desire to be in the fray instead of overlooking it because it is in the best interest of your success. But that performance is what sets him apart from others and what will probably keep him there, apart. Musk He is no ordinary citizen, and the premise that he could ever be is so ridiculous that his performance only makes his theatrical antics more apparent.

Musk he will never look normal because he is not really willing to be normal. Otherwise, you would shut your mouth and pay your taxes.