Is Elon Mask a fraud? These are some Quora answers.
by Gyalten P. Tsering
Tesla/SpaceX are the quintessential American frauds. This means they are not based on outright lies but on gross exaggerations and wishful thinking backed by great PR and propaganda. Many previous American frauds like invasion of Iraq and the exaggeration of American military capability are based on this layout.
The most breakthroughs have happened through government backing. But Musk is basically a welfare king and a private man. He often implies that he is spending money from his own pocket which he obviously is not. Also, he has not actually put forward any real tech advance till now and is famous only for promising things which have not been done.
To put this in perspective, Bill Gates raked in the moolah only after he developed windows without anticipation to revolutionize PC industry. Same with Google guys and Steve Jobs, in every case the innovators first made step forward and then cashed in on it. But Musk has done nothing other than hd streams of rocket landings.
The tech of rocket is basically the same as developed by Russians in the 70s(without supercomputers). There is no, I repeat no breakthrough since then. But more disturbingly, space x is promising that a rocket can be used multiple times (like a commercial airline) to bring down the cost and make it like a passenger airline. The only problem is that it cannot be done with current tech. It is a well-known fact that making a new rocket/shuttle is far more reasonable than reusing the same as the cost of failure is too high.
Space x is a scam company being kept afloat through govt subsidy which would not be so bad if it did not divert resources from researchers who have real chance of breakthrough.
Coming to Tesla, why a company that sells (or gives away) a few thousand cars a year being valued more than a company that sells millions of units? Making discussion about it taboo and stick to the dogma that Tesla is an innovator and skeptics are just jealous or fools. But let us look at the electric car market. Making electric cars and setting up battery stations like petrol pumps is in no way a revolutionary idea (it is also not eco-friendly, because electricity comes from mostly fossil fuels). True breakthrough will have to be in battery technology that radically increases storage capacity, if you get batteries that can store energy 50–500 times the current capacity then that is a real innovation and the person who does it surely deserves to be a billionaire. Car design and sleek looks are not important/secondary, the real breakthrough has to come in battery storage so that a car can go 2000 km without the need to recharge (which will be eco-friendly).
However, Musk does not even talk about this and spends all his time making pretty designs with the same shitty batteries that last as long as a smartphone. Tesla’s problems are not that it can never be profitable, profitability should not be the concern as most great ventures started without profit motive (space race, mobile, internet etc.) It is that Musk has become a billionaire without making a tech advance which every single tech billionaire did before (Bill Gates, Steve Jobs, Google guys- all made the breakthrough first and then cashed in). Musk also has diverted the attention and govt funding from anonymous researchers who have a chance of making an energy storage breakthrough.
So, in conclusion, Musk is a typical American fraud and a braggart who sucks at exactly what he claims to be great at.
by Eray Özkural
Musk is certainly a fraud. He has zero technological breakthroughs, and cool inventions of his own. He apparently doesn’t have enough IQ. He just hired some engineer’s way smarter than himself, and is good at being a PR clown.
He claimed that:
AI is the devil; it will kill us all.
We live in a simulation. (Some idiots watched The Matrix.)
Nanotechnology is bullshit.
Tesla self-driving is better than human (it killed people, made a lot of accidents that shouldn’t have happened).
Re-usable rockets are a great innovation in space (no just wasting funds and holding back progress). I think this is only half true, it did achieve great cost savings in the launch market, and achieved market domination, but it is by no means a significant breakthrough in space, at least it looks like it wasn’t his invention, looks like he just hired engineers that made a scrapped NASA project. He seems like just a mediocre programmer with no understanding of advanced engineering in any field.
My verdict is that Musk is a typical American fraudster, like a lot of Silicon Valley entrepreneurs.
He is however great at raising funds, selling visions, and paying engineers to build cool stuff. That doesn’t mean the image his PR machine projects is entirely factual, though.
by Jared Fox, PhD Computer Science
Musk has allegedly committed significant fraud on multiple occasions. It appears from the insider testimony and other evidence that he does that whenever he needs to raise money or pump up the Tesla stock price or bail himself out from bad investments. He is a compulsive liar, just lying reflexively even when there’s no reason for it. He’s a massive narcissist. He endangers the lives of people by putting out buggy cars and software, but overhyping their capabilities so that people trust them and some die as a result of trusting the systems too much. I think the evidence is strong that he belongs in jail.
I used to think Musk was a genius saving the world. But then I spent a lot of time looking into things and realized I was totally wrong. Maybe he was trying to save the world at one point. But at this point he is one of the world’s greatest conmen. Tesla may have started (without Musk BTW) with good intentions. Same with SolarCity. But at some point, any theoretical humanitarian motivations for the firms were cast aside and replaced with furthering Musk’s own ambitions to be adored.
I only started to realize the extent of his fraud when he conned Tesla shareholders into bailing out his and his cousins’ investments in SolarCity. I don’t have the time to go through all the details. But he 1) learned that SolarCity was on the verge of bankruptcy, 2) knew the SEC was going to force them to disclose this, 3) manipulated the Tesla board he controlled to approve the acquisition before the disclosures were public, 4) invented the fake Solar Roof product as a way to convince people that there was a good reason to buy the firm, even though the product did not exist and even the demo was fake, 5) conned the shareholders into bailing him and his cousins out.
There have been many other acts of major fraud along the way. To this day Musk has effectively killed people by pretending that Autopilot and Full Self Driving features are not only safe, but are even safer than human drivers, even though he knows that the software is buggy, the hardware is insufficient, and the system has killed people.
Musk belongs in jail. If there’s any justice for wealthy celebrities in this country he will end up there.
from JEWISH VIRTUAL LIBRARY
Elon Musk is the founder and CEO of SpaceX, a company that builds space shuttles for private use and for NASA. He is also one of the founders of PayPal and Tesla Motors. Musk is an American but was born and raised in Pretoria, South Africa. He has received degrees in business and physics from the Wharton School and the University of Pennsylvania. His parents are of Dutch, English and Jewish descent. In his career, Musk has worked at Paypal, Tesla Motors, and SolarCity.