King empire

Elon Musk, king of government grants, suddenly worries

The House of Representatives waited for the Congressional Budget Office to rule on how the Build Back Better law would affect the deficit, before finally passing President Biden’s signature legislative package. The Senate would now wait until it can sit down with the Senate parliamentarian and determine what may actually be in the bill. But let’s face it, this all just kills time until the most important voice in the room – Elon Musk – speaks on the matter.

Monday evening, during an appearance at a the Wall Street newspaper conference, the CEO of Tesla and SpaceX made his best impression of Emperor Commodus and gave the green light to the Build Back Better Actl. “Honestly, I could just handle this whole bill,” Musk said. “Don’t let him pass. This is my recommendation.

The proclamation might surprise. After all, the Build Back Better Act has been hailed as the most significant climate legislation the country has ever seen, delivering record levels of investment for the clean energy transition and shifting away from fossil fuels. . Musk would care very deeply about climate change: he said that “climate change is the greatest threat facing humanity in this century”, and he warned that if left unchecked, devastation caused by climate change could “cause more destruction than all the wars in history combined.”

So why doesn’t Musk want the government to pass a bill that represents the best possible chance, you know, avoiding all of that? Well, that adds a bit to the federal deficit, and apparently it just won’t be enough. “We have spent so much money, the federal budget deficit is insane,” he said. “We are running this incredible deficit. Something must give.

If it were up to Musk, he would like to see the government save money by ending “all subsidies,” including many included in the Build Back Better Act and the accompanying bipartisan infrastructure deal that would directly benefit builders. of electric vehicles by rapidly developing the charging infrastructure. nationwide and offering tax credits for the purchase of electric vehicles.

It should be right down Musk’s aisle considering he runs the business which, by its own accounts, has manufactured about two-thirds of all electric vehicles in the United States. This is exactly why Musk opposes additional subsidies.

Elon Musk has one guiding principle: make money for Elon Musk.

Here’s what’s left unsaid in Musk’s little rant against deficit spending and government grants: He’s one of the biggest beneficiaries. Musk’s companies, including Tesla, have received around $ 4.9 billion in government grants. This includes a major investment from the Department of Energy to build its first models of electric cars and Obama-era tax credits that made people buy these cars. Tesla owned the market then, which benefited the most. Now there are competitors coming up, and suddenly Musk is worried about the budget deficit.

Take a look at how things turned out in Europe for Tesla. Tesla dominated the electric car market across the continent for years, until governments started cracking down on emissions. More and more automakers have started offering electric alternatives, and Tesla’s market share has shrunk significantly. Its lead is also poised to evaporate in the United States if other manufacturers are offered the same benefits as Tesla.

Musk may also be disappointed that the Build Back Better Act provides additional subsidies for electric vehicles made by unionized workers, something the CEO of Tesla has been very actively trying to do within his company. He illegally fired a worker involved in union organizing, threatened workers with loss of stock options if they chose to form a union, and posted anti-union tweets. Meanwhile, Tesla intentionally obscured information about employee injuries, ignored worker complaints about stressful and physically taxing work, and fired workers to stay home rather than return to work during a pandemic. Looks like these union campaigns may have some validity, eh?

None of this should come as a surprise from Musk. On the surface, he gives the impression that he has ideals and that he will defend them at all costs. The reality is, he’s a self-interested goober who will do and say whatever benefits him. He befriended Donald Trump, although Trump denies the reality of climate change, which Musk calls the greatest threat facing humanity. He poured money into the coffers of Republican politicians who fought tooth and nail to prevent action on climate change because he wanted them to be treated favorably in his trade dealings – the same reason why he gives dough to the Democrats.

Elon Musk has one guiding principle: make money for Elon Musk. Anything that resembles a principled position, such as opposing deficit spending or government grants, can change at any time.