The Elusive Politics of Elon Musk

Mr. Musk has objected when politicians have tried to characterize his views as in sync with their very own, insisting that he would relatively depart politics to others, regardless of ample proof on Twitter on the contrary. When Mr. Abbott final yr defended a strict anti-abortion legislation that made the process just about unlawful in Texas by citing Mr. Musk’s assist — “Elon constantly tells me that he likes the social insurance policies within the state of Texas,” the governor stated — Mr. Musk pushed again.

“On the whole, I consider authorities ought to not often impose its will upon the individuals, and, when doing so, ought to aspire to maximise their cumulative happiness,” he responded on Twitter. “That stated, I would like to remain out of politics.”

If that’s the case, he usually can’t appear to assist himself. He heckles political figures who’ve taken a place he disagrees with or who’ve seemingly slighted him. Mr. Musk’s response to Senator Elizabeth Warren after she stated that he ought to pay extra in earnings taxes was, “Please don’t name the supervisor on me, Senator Karen.”

After one in every of Mr. Musk’s Twitter followers identified that President Biden had not congratulated SpaceX for the profitable completion of a personal spaceflight final fall, Mr. Musk hit again with a jab paying homage to Mr. Trump’s derisive nickname “Sleepy Joe.”

“He’s nonetheless sleeping,” he replied. A number of days later, he criticized the Biden administration as “not the friendliest” and accused it of being managed by labor unions. These feedback got here just some weeks after his insistence that he most well-liked to remain out of politics.

Few points have raised his ire as a lot because the coronavirus restrictions, which impeded Tesla’s manufacturing operations in California and nudged him nearer to his resolution final yr to maneuver the corporate’s headquarters to Texas. That transfer, nevertheless, was very a lot symbolic since Tesla nonetheless has its predominant manufacturing plant within the San Francisco Bay Space suburb of Fremont, Calif., and a big workplace in Palo Alto.

Over the course of the pandemic, Mr. Musk’s outbursts flared dramatically as he lashed out at state and native governments over stay-at-home orders. He initially defied native laws that shut down his Tesla manufacturing unit in Fremont. He described the lockdowns as “forcibly imprisoning individuals of their houses” and posted a libertarian-tinged rallying cry to Twitter: “FREE AMERICA NOW.” He threatened to sue Alameda County for the shutdowns earlier than relenting.

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