Elon Musk doesn’t innovate anything

Named 2021’s “Person of the Year” in TIME Magazine, Elon Musk has slowly but surely climbed the social ladder, now being hailed as one of the most famous and innovative people of the 21st century. His flagship businesses, Tesla and SpaceX, appear to be pioneers in their respective industries, continuing to grow. However, with his recent acquisition of Twitter, Musk has proved himself to be virtually inept with single-handedly running an entire social media app. He has received a monsoon of criticism in the past two months, something that I believe was a long time coming.

Incriminating information about Musk has been progressively revealed, like how his patented Tesla cars were exploding at a much higher rate than other vehicles, due to the flammable lithium-ion batteries that Tesla inexplicably employs. Combined with Tesla’s self-driving car prototypes consistently hitting pedestrians, people have started to lose trust in Musk. Some Musk fans, however, remained undeterred. Musk is unique in the fact that he is the only mainstream billionaire with a strong fandom behind him. They look up to Musk like he is the most important human being to ever walk the Earth. To this day, you cannot criticize Elon Musk in any capacity without some people getting incredibly defensive about their favorite billionaire, as if they are truly getting something for defending him in the long run.

The thing that Musk’s fans hate to talk about most, however, is the simple fact that Elon Musk is not an inventor. He is an investor. He did not found Tesla, he did not design anything for SpaceX and he didn’t even found PayPal, the company that he cites as the true start of his career. The most he has ever been cited for designing at Tesla are some minor parts on his self-driving Tesla model, which I have already discussed the effectiveness of. Tesla was originally the creation of Martin Eberhard and Marc Tarpening, and SpaceX is a nearly completely government-funded contractor whose name is the only thing that Musk can take credit for.

Most recently, Musk has come under fire for his gigantic buyout of Twitter. The criticisms began after mass layoffs, when he fired over half of all Twitter employees. Musk would also be criticized for reinstating banned accounts like that of Kanye West and Donald Trump. Trump did not return to the app, but West immediately began to post anti-semitic rhetoric as soon as he was back on. He would soon be banned, but only after several weeks of the initial tweet being posted. This seems to be clear callousness on Musk’s part, likely hoping to score more points with the “anti-cancel culture” crowd. However, he is now more despised than he’s ever been, getting resounding “boos” at his guest appearance during a Dave Chappelle show in San Francisco. Keep in mind, Chappelle is one of the most divisive comedians working today, and shares many of Musk’s politics. Thus, it is a sign that nearly the entire audience didn’t want him to be there.

The tide is turning on Elon Musk, going from one of the most revered names in the tech industry to barely more than a pathetic libertarian media pundit. I believe that Musk was a fraud from the beginning, rooting all back to his wealthy childhood as the son of a venture capitalist who destroyed the South African ecosystem in order to create an emerald mining empire. Musk has, and will continue to be at the very top of the economic food chain. If he isn’t able to see the monster he is, then the most I can hope for is that his fans will.