Elon Musk: I’ll say what I want even if it makes me lose money

During an interview on CNBC, Elon Musk defended his right to say inflammatory things on Twitter, even if those statements cost him money. He seemed to briefly disengage after being asked why bother tweeting. And he finally quoted The princess Bride to explain his arrogant attitude towards what he shares on Twitter.

It was a very strange interview.

The interview came after a series of particularly troubling tweets for Musk, in which he promoted conspiracy theories about a mass shooting in Texas, was accused of anti-Semitism after claiming George Soros “hates humanity” and retweeted debunked theories about crime and race.

After a series of mostly mild questions about Tesla and time management, CNBC’s David Farmer asked why he tweets conspiracy theories and makes statements that have been criticized as racist and anti-Semitic, especially when they could lose him customers and harm others. the companies he runs.

After an extremely long and awkward pause, Musk referenced the scene from the 1987 film. The princess Bride, in which Mandy Patinkin’s Íñigo Montoya character confronts the man who killed his father.

“He says, ‘Offer me money. Offer me power,’” Musk said. “‘I don’t mind.'”

“You just don’t care,” Faber replied, to which Musk just stared at him. “You want to share what you have to say.”

“I’ll say what I have to say, and if the consequences are losing money, so be it.”

Finally, Musk said: “I’ll say what I have to say, and if the consequences are losing money, then so be it.”

As the CEO of a public company, there are limits to what Musk can say, on Twitter or elsewhere. If you tweet misleading things about Tesla, shareholders will sue you, as they did after you tweeted about taking the company private at $420 a share. (The shareholders lost the lawsuit, and Musk was found not liable for their losses.)

His tweets have caused him all kinds of headaches over the years. His private tweet in 2018 landed him a $40 million fine from the Securities and Exchange Commission and lost him the Tesla chairmanship. He is currently under a consent decree with the SEC that requires a lawyer to approve his tweets about Tesla before he can post them. A federal appeals court recently ruled against Musk’s attempts to overturn the consent decree.

We’ve been through all of this before. Musk is asked why he tweets inflammatory things, and he points to his following to justify his increasingly unhinged behavior, as if a large portion of those followers aren’t just playing games. His followers and shareholders beg him to stop tweeting, but he doubles and triples them, over and over again. It is, one might say, inconceivable.


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