Elon Musk advised CNBC’s David Faber on Tuesday that he would not care if his inflammatory tweets scare away potential Tesla patrons or Twitter advertisers.
“I’ll say what I want, and if the consequence of that is losing money, so be it,” stated Musk, who owns Twitter.
Musk has for years tweeted controversial gadgets, together with conspiracy theories and feedback his critics have referred to as broadly discriminatory.
His protection got here after Musk caught renewed criticism for a tweet during which he likened liberal billionaire and Democratic donor George Soros to X-Men villain Magneto, a Jewish Holocaust survivor.
“He wants to erode the very fabric of civilization. Soros hates humanity,” Musk tweeted Monday.
Musk has beforehand criticized Soros, whose household workplace, Soros Fund Management, not too long ago lower its stake in Tesla. Soros, who can also be Jewish, is a favourite goal of proper wing pundits and politicians and sometimes the topic of anti-Semitic assaults. Soros and his household escaped the Nazis throughout World War II.
Critics stated Musk’s tweets about Soros match a bigger sample of assaults on the 92-year-old investor and Democratic donor. “Musk’s likening Soros to Magneto isn’t casual; it’s a nod to harmful antisemitic tropes of Jewish global control,” tweeted Alex Goldenberg, an analyst on the Network Contagion Research Institute. Israel’s Foreign Ministry, likewise, stated Musk’s tweets had “anti-Semitic overtones.”
Musk on Tuesday denied he is an anti-Semite. “I’m a pro-Semite, if anything,” he stated when Faber requested him concerning the criticism. Musk has additionally beforehand tweeted and eliminated memes utilizing Hitler.
Faber on Tuesday additionally requested Musk why he tweeted a hyperlink to somebody who stated a mass taking pictures at a Texas mall earlier this month is perhaps a part of “a bad psyop,” or “psychological operation.” Investigators have probed whether or not the shooter, whom police killed, had expressed white supremacist views since he wore a “RWDS” patch, a reference to the phrase “Right Wing Death Squad,” which is utilized by extremists.
“I thought this ascribing it to white supremacy was bulls—,” Musk stated, including that he thinks there is not any proof the shooter was a white supremacist. “We should not be ascribing things to white supremacy if they’re — if it’s false.”
Since Musk took over Twitter final fall, the social media community has skilled a pointy decline in promoting income as manufacturers and corporations assessed adjustments to the platform and a few referred to as out its outspoken new proprietor.
Last week, Musk employed former NBCUniversal promoting chief Linda Yaccarino to switch him as Twitter’s CEO, a transfer extensively seen as a strategy to jumpstart Twitter’s advert enterprise. She began Sunday.
Disclosure: NBCUniversal is the father or mother firm of CNBC.
–CNBC’s Lora Kolodny contributed to this report.