Elon Musk, the richest person in the world, often attempts to make himself seem relatable, but his comments about the GameStop stock rise and consequential stock exchange restrictions make it apparent that his actions are entirely performative.
Musk strives for a positive image on social media, attempting to make himself relatable through posting memes on Twitter and employing vernacular often used in gaming. His endeavor to make himself a friend of the working class, despite his ostentatious and unethical amount of wealth directly harming billions of working class people every day, is both laughable for its absurdity and scary for its apparent appeal to some.
Although his ventures to be liked by the public are arguably problematic, his comments on social media and the audio app Clubhouse about the GameStop stock scandal undeniably show his deadly duplicity. Musk questioned the CEO of Robinhood, the company responsible for halting trading for GameStop, stating, “What happened last week? Why couldn’t people buy the GameStop shares? The people demand answers, and they want to know the truth.” Musk, who has made his career from his father’s money, which came from South African emerald Apartheid mining, does not care about the poor or the neglected; rather, he cares about himself.
An expose on one of Musk’s Tesla factories revealed that it had an injury rate higher than any other comparable auto manufacturer. He has tried to suppress unionizing at his factories, which is illegal, and he has also tried to get around shelter in place restrictions and is infamous for treating his workers badly.
The icing on the cake of his hypocritical tirade, however, was when he tweeted that the discussion-board site Discord went “corpo,” (corporate) when it shut down a GameStop trader forum. Musk, who is the definition of corporate, as he does not support taxing the rich, is a complete hypocrite.
Musk’s status as a billionaire, especially as the richest person in the world, makes him an inherently unethical person. His extreme amount of wealth skews the global wealth distribution and hurts billions of people daily. His choice to keep more money than he can ever spend all for a title is infantile and disgusting.
Elon Musk built his wealth on lies and immoral actions, and he does not deserve the wealth he possesses, especially as a child dies from hunger every 10 seconds and one in nine people in the world go to bed hungry. For him to hold such an obscene amount of wealth, knowing that he is warping the global wealth distribution, is sickening.
Also, fossil fuel air pollution causes almost one in five deaths globally each year, and Musk is a huge contributor to climate change, as he values profit over environmentalism. Many Americans reject criticism of billionaires’ unethical actions or legislation aiming to tax them higher, claiming that they are upholding American values by being “innovators” and personifying the “American Dream.” How hoarding wealth while your fellow citizens live paycheck to paycheck and struggle to feed their children upholds what America represents baffles me. There is nothing American about watching the world burn while refusing to turn on the hose that could put out the fire.
Elon Musk is not a good person, and he is not a friend of the working class. Any message that he preaches about being one is mere propaganda, and he should be taxed higher immediately.