Author Topic: Elon Musk  (Read 10811 times)

Crafty_Dog

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ccp

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Re: Elon Musk
« Reply #1 on: April 29, 2022, 10:07:38 AM »
I think the Right's celebration of Musk might have been premature

 :|

Crafty_Dog

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Re: Elon Musk
« Reply #2 on: April 29, 2022, 10:37:32 AM »
What are you seeing?

ccp

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Re: Elon Musk
« Reply #3 on: April 29, 2022, 01:17:02 PM »
well Elon calls himself a liberal

no fan of far LEFT or Right

going for the 80 % in the middle

just wary of him

too soon to celebrate but certainly could not have been worse for us

prior to him

+ the dem lawyers playing every trick they can think of to cancel this out........


would not be surprised for Garland to step in ......




ccp

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Re: Elon Musk
« Reply #5 on: April 30, 2022, 11:45:06 AM »
what happens if Twitter responds and says we don't need Europe .......

who gets hurt more ?

Crafty_Dog

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Re: Elon Musk
« Reply #6 on: April 30, 2022, 12:30:11 PM »
From my FB page on this:


Robert-Anthony Viernes Delos Santos
Misleading headline... It would have done that regardless of whether Elon purchased Twitter.
Reply1h

Marc Denny
Robert-Anthony Viernes Delos Santos As an American the EU bureaucracy is not a forte for me, but isn't the point here that prior to EM the EU was happy with the twits at Twitter censoring inconvenient posts?
Reply1h

Robert-Anthony Viernes Delos Santos
 I think that's what the article wants you to think.
There's a new law. They expect any tech company to follow it. IMO, anything beyond that is adding political commentary.
Just like when gdpr came out, every company has to make sure the follow suit

Marc Denny
Robert-Anthony Viernes Delos Santos GDPR?
Reply1h

Robert-Anthony Viernes Delos Santos
Marc Denny there was a time before where you'd go to a website and you didn't see cookie consent banners. Adding user consent was part of gdpr to protect users data and privacy
Reply55m

Marc Denny
Robert-Anthony Viernes Delos Santos So THAT is why I am seeing that! Love it!

But I'm not getting how that is relevant to this:

" The legislation “sets out an unprecedented new standard for the accountability of online platforms regarding illegal and harmful content. It will provide better protection for internet users and their fundamental rights.”

"Although the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights and European Convention on Human Rights spells out protections for free speech, it carves out harsh regulations for “hate speech” and how it’s defined."

What I am hearing with those words is censorship.


Robert-Anthony Viernes Delos Santos
Marc Denny the relation is that countries expect you to follow their legislation. It's not a hit job on Twitter because Elon bought it. They would have expected Twitter to follow suit regardless of who owns it. 

I guess we'd both have to do some reading to learn how they define hate speech.

My perspective is more from a practitioner vs legal or political. I help companies with their marketing technology stack and make sure they follow applicable rules.

I have until 2024 to read up on how this changes things. Most companies wait last minute to make adjustments 🤣


Marc Denny
Robert-Anthony Viernes Delos Santos

"After Elon Musk’s offer to buy Twitter was officially accepted on Monday, the European Union threatened on Tuesday to sanction or even ban the platform if it doesn’t comply with a newly passed tech moderation law.

, , ,

"The EU reached a provisional agreement for the DSA over the weekend nearly a year-and-a-half after it was first proposed. The legislation “sets out an unprecedented new standard for the accountability of online platforms regarding illegal and harmful content. It will provide better protection for internet users and their fundamental rights.”

Understood that Euro legal theory on Free Speech is quite narrower than American (at least as American theory used to be!) and of course, countries "expect you to follow their legislation" but it sounds like what is happening here is a RESPONSE to EM buying Twitter. Thus, it precisely is what you call "political commentary" (i.e. an effort to politically intimidate).



Robert-Anthony Viernes Delos Santos
Marc Denny I guess that's fair. I'd have to look into the context of why that was stated in the first place. Was it an interview and they specifically asked about Elon? Or did he just bring it up on his own?


G M

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Re: Elon Musk
« Reply #8 on: April 30, 2022, 02:05:16 PM »
https://reclaimthenet.org/60-countries-sign-declaration-misinformation/

The creation of DHS-MiniTru is just a coincidence!

From my FB page on this:


Robert-Anthony Viernes Delos Santos
Misleading headline... It would have done that regardless of whether Elon purchased Twitter.
Reply1h

Marc Denny
Robert-Anthony Viernes Delos Santos As an American the EU bureaucracy is not a forte for me, but isn't the point here that prior to EM the EU was happy with the twits at Twitter censoring inconvenient posts?
Reply1h

Robert-Anthony Viernes Delos Santos
 I think that's what the article wants you to think.
There's a new law. They expect any tech company to follow it. IMO, anything beyond that is adding political commentary.
Just like when gdpr came out, every company has to make sure the follow suit

Marc Denny
Robert-Anthony Viernes Delos Santos GDPR?
Reply1h

Robert-Anthony Viernes Delos Santos
Marc Denny there was a time before where you'd go to a website and you didn't see cookie consent banners. Adding user consent was part of gdpr to protect users data and privacy
Reply55m

Marc Denny
Robert-Anthony Viernes Delos Santos So THAT is why I am seeing that! Love it!

But I'm not getting how that is relevant to this:

" The legislation “sets out an unprecedented new standard for the accountability of online platforms regarding illegal and harmful content. It will provide better protection for internet users and their fundamental rights.”

"Although the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights and European Convention on Human Rights spells out protections for free speech, it carves out harsh regulations for “hate speech” and how it’s defined."

What I am hearing with those words is censorship.


Robert-Anthony Viernes Delos Santos
Marc Denny the relation is that countries expect you to follow their legislation. It's not a hit job on Twitter because Elon bought it. They would have expected Twitter to follow suit regardless of who owns it. 

I guess we'd both have to do some reading to learn how they define hate speech.

My perspective is more from a practitioner vs legal or political. I help companies with their marketing technology stack and make sure they follow applicable rules.

I have until 2024 to read up on how this changes things. Most companies wait last minute to make adjustments 🤣


Marc Denny
Robert-Anthony Viernes Delos Santos

"After Elon Musk’s offer to buy Twitter was officially accepted on Monday, the European Union threatened on Tuesday to sanction or even ban the platform if it doesn’t comply with a newly passed tech moderation law.

, , ,

"The EU reached a provisional agreement for the DSA over the weekend nearly a year-and-a-half after it was first proposed. The legislation “sets out an unprecedented new standard for the accountability of online platforms regarding illegal and harmful content. It will provide better protection for internet users and their fundamental rights.”

Understood that Euro legal theory on Free Speech is quite narrower than American (at least as American theory used to be!) and of course, countries "expect you to follow their legislation" but it sounds like what is happening here is a RESPONSE to EM buying Twitter. Thus, it precisely is what you call "political commentary" (i.e. an effort to politically intimidate).



Robert-Anthony Viernes Delos Santos
Marc Denny I guess that's fair. I'd have to look into the context of why that was stated in the first place. Was it an interview and they specifically asked about Elon? Or did he just bring it up on his own?








Crafty_Dog

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Crafty_Dog

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Elon Musk to Iran's rescue?
« Reply #18 on: September 23, 2022, 08:13:50 PM »
Elon Musk Has a Better Iran Idea
His Starlink service could help protesters communicate.
By The Editorial BoardFollow
Sept. 23, 2022 6:24 pm ET

People clash with police during a protest following the death of Mahsa Amini in Tehran, Sept. 21.
PHOTO: STR/SHUTTERSTOCK

Protests have erupted in Iran again, this time over the death of a woman in police custody. The regime is cracking down as usual, but the Biden Administration and American entrepreneurs may have some help to offer.

Mahsa Amini, 22, died after she was arrested for allegedly violating Iran’s Islamic dress code. Iran’s morals police have become more oppressive, and women can be detained for even minor violations. Once a person is in custody, police can do more or less whatever they want without consequences.

Reuters says protests that began last weekend have spread to some 50 localities including Tehran. Demonstrators have yelled “we don’t want an Islamic Republic” and “Death to the Supreme Leader.” The government sent in riot police, and the human-rights group Hengaw said Thursday that at least 15 have been killed. Such demonstrations erupt periodically in Iran, and they may not jeopardize the regime. But they do reveal simmering unrest.

The protests also show the importance of getting information to Iranians about what is happening in their own country. Internet access abets resistance to the regime by allowing dissenters to coordinate and reassure each other that they aren’t alone. Iranian authorities know this is a vulnerability and have moved to control the internet.

Our contributor Hossein Ronaghi, who has criticized Iran’s pursuit of a “Chinese model of limited national intranet,” said in a video that he narrowly escaped an attempted violent arrest Thursday. Secretary of State Antony Blinken said Iran “cut off access to the Internet for most of its 80 million citizens” amid the protests, and authorities also restricted access to WhatsApp and Instagram.

Enter Elon Musk, who said on Twitter this week that he would seek an exemption to sanctions to make his satellite-internet system Starlink available in Iran. Mr. Musk has already provided Starlink services to Ukraine that have helped soldiers and civilians maintain communication despite Russian jamming.

U.S. law gives the executive branch broad discretion over enforcing sanctions, and on Friday the Treasury Department issued a license to “expand the range of internet services available to Iranians” and help “the Iranian people be better equipped to counter the government’s efforts to surveil and censor them.”

Mr. Musk’s SpaceX didn’t respond to a query about whether any additional sanctions barriers remained. But the Treasury license also clears the way for other American companies to help the Iranian people get online.

The Obama Administration failed to support the Green Revolution in 2009 as it sought a nuclear deal. So far the Biden Administration is supporting the right to protest, but it can help Iranians the most by helping them know the truth about their leaders.


Crafty_Dog

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Tucker on the Goolag vs. Musk
« Reply #20 on: October 19, 2022, 10:51:58 AM »

Crafty_Dog

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Crafty_Dog

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D1 on security risks of Musk at Twitter
« Reply #23 on: November 02, 2022, 03:42:01 PM »


https://www.defenseone.com/ideas/2022/11/how-elon-musks-twitter-buy-raises-cybersecurity-risks-rest-us/379213/

Ignore the defense of pre Musk Twitter.  Some points worth considering in here.




ccp

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the entire LEFT
« Reply #26 on: November 18, 2022, 07:12:57 AM »
is intent on bringing Musk's twitter down

CNN's "reliable sources " on Drudge this am:

https://view.newsletters.cnn.com/messages/166874088300551417e61c43c/raw?utm_term=166874088300551417e61c43c

from the shysters to MSM to H wood to DNC
to the genZ(zzzzz) employees

since Twitter can no longer function as a de facto arm of Democrat Party
it MUST be shut down

looks like Musk must clean it up top down




DougMacG

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Re: Elon Musk
« Reply #27 on: November 18, 2022, 09:13:41 AM »
Local paper front page today suggests Twitter is a troubled company with all these employees "leaving".

Seems to me they were fired and are being replaced by people who might want to work for a living, and not just censor non-narrative content.

Also, it will take time to replace all the bot and troll posters that made up old twitter.



Crafty_Dog

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Elon Musk fires Jim Baker
« Reply #30 on: December 07, 2022, 12:19:19 PM »
https://www.theepochtimes.com/elon-musk-fires-twitters-general-counsel-and-ex-fbi-official-james-baker_4907660.html?utm_source=Morningbrief&src_src=Morningbrief&utm_campaign=mb-2022-12-07&src_cmp=mb-2022-12-07&utm_medium=email&est=YDJfdx9J37W6TXQKdXjdehYIa0N1JvgYasZz02xecxmS9jhCl0IHvudbXZ%2B9trxyhKdD

Twitter owner Elon Musk confirmed that one of its top officials, James Baker—a former FBI general counsel—was “exited” from the company on Tuesday amid concerns that were raised about his “possible role in suppression of information.”

“In light of concerns about Baker’s possible role in suppression of information important to the public dialogue, he was exited from Twitter today,” wrote Musk on Twitter. Musk did not offer any more details on Baker’s exit or what role he played at the firm.

Musk, the new owner of Twitter, was responding to an article penned by Jonathan Turley, the George Washington University law professor and political commentator, who noted that Baker was a former FBI general counsel. Baker has not issued a public comment about his apparent departure from the social media firm.

It came days after Musk provided internal Twitter information to journalist Matt Taibbi, who had published details about the social media platform’s decision to essentially censor the New York Post’s report about Hunter Biden’s laptop in October 2020.

Epoch Times Photo
Former FBI General Counsel James Baker testified before the House judiciary and oversight committees on Oct. 3 and Oct. 18, 2018. (Samira Bouaou/The Epoch Times)
And minutes after Musk confirmed Baker’s departure on Tuesday, Taibbi wrote: “On Tuesday, Twitter Deputy General Counsel (and former FBI General Counsel) Jim Baker was fired. Among the reasons? Vetting the first batch of ‘Twitter Files’ – without knowledge of new management.”

Taibbi indicated that Baker was in charge of reviewing and releasing the “Twitter Files.”

“The news that Baker was reviewing the ‘Twitter files’ surprised everyone involved, to say the least. New Twitter chief Elon Musk acted quickly to ‘exit’ Baker Tuesday,” Taibbi also wrote on Tuesday evening. “Reporters resumed searches through Twitter Files material—a lot of it—today. The next installment of ‘The Twitter Files’ will appear” in the near future, he wrote.

Baker, notably, was referenced in special counsel John Durham’s court filings in a case targeting former Clinton campaign lawyer Michael Sussmann, who had met with Baker in 2016 and, according to Durham, allegedly lied to Baker about who he was working for when he relayed information about a secret communications channel between the Russian government and then-candidate Donald Trump. He was hired by Twitter in 2020 as the firm’s deputy general counsel and vice president after leaving the FBI.

Hours before Musk’s post on Twitter, Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio), the likely incoming chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, raised speculation about Baker’s role at Twitter.

“FBI Agent Timothy Thibault tried to shut down an avenue of the Hunter Biden investigation,” he wrote, referring to alleged whistleblower testimony about Thibault, which the former official categorically denied in a statement to The Epoch Times earlier this year. “Then, Twitter hires former FBI General Counsel James Baker who helps give the company an excuse to suppress the story,” added Jordan. “Coordination?”

Letter
Republicans on Tuesday also issued a letter (pdf) to Baker, which suggested that he still worked at Twitter’s headquarters in San Francisco, and asked him to contact the House Oversight Committee and appear before the panel during the next Congress.

Citing new information released by Twitter, Baker allegedly “played a key advisory role in the decision to censor” the New York Post’s report about Hunter Biden’s overseas business deals ahead of the 2020 General Election.

It added that Baker “wrote in an email—after Twitter censored the laptop story—that ‘we need more facts to assess whether the materials were hacked'” and said Baker had “advised that the story should remain censored, nonetheless.”

The letter was referring to new information posted by Taibbi the past weekend, which showed Twitter managers moved to block the NY Post’s report about Hunter Biden’s laptop without then-CEO Jack Dorsey’s knowledge. Taibbi published alleged internal emails that were given to him by Musk showing Twitter executives debating on what to do with the NY Post’s report.


Ultimately, Twitter blocked sharing of the NY Post story amid allegations that it was part of a Russian disinformation plot, while the newspaper was blocked from accessing its account for more than two weeks. It was later determined that details of the story and information sourced from the laptop were authentic.

At the same time, Taibbi’s posts revealed that Twitter’s management was responding to requests from then-candidate Joe Biden’s campaign team, who appeared to be communicating with the social media company’s executives via back channels.

“I support the conclusion that we need more facts to assess whether the materials were hacked,” Baker wrote in October 2020, according to a screenshot posted by Taibbi last weekend. “At this stage, however, it is reasonable for us to assume that they may have been, and caution is warranted.”

Baker added that “there are some facts that indicate that materials may have been hacked,” according to the screenshot. He did not provide those facts.

The Epoch Times has contacted Baker for comment.




Crafty_Dog

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Elon Musk to step down from Twitter?!?
« Reply #34 on: December 19, 2022, 06:27:36 AM »
We see here a primal example of why our Founding Fathers gave us a Constitutional Republic and not a Democracy.

Elon's weakness here runs the risk of undoing all that he has accomplished here.

https://dailycaller.com/2022/12/19/twitter-vote-elon-musk-step-down/?utm_source=piano&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=breaking&pnespid=67Y8UHlEPqYH3PvQqzSpSIucuwijT5tyK7Gm3PZspANmtKTq9M.U14O8zYECIrCa0JBTEpMh


Crafty_Dog

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Re: Elon Musk
« Reply #36 on: December 22, 2022, 06:03:18 AM »
Elon Musk Announces Deletion of 1.5 Billion Twitter Accounts and New Feature

Elon Musk , Announces Deletion of 1.5 Billion Twitter Accounts , and New Feature for Users’ Tweets. In a series of tweets, Musk announced he will remove 1.5 billion accounts from Twitter in the coming weeks. . Fox News reports that Musk said the decision to delete these accounts was to free up usernames for current users. . According to Musk, the soon-to-be deleted accounts have not been logged into "for years." . These are obvious account deletions with no tweets & no log in for years, Elon Musk, via Twitter. The early December 9 tweets also included the promise of a new feature that will allow Twitter users to see how many people read or react to their tweets. . The early December 9 tweets also included the promise of a new feature that will allow Twitter users to see how many people read or react to their tweets. . Tweets will show view count in a few weeks, just like videos do. Twitter is much more alive than people think, Elon Musk, via Twitter. Fox News reports that the changes come as part of Musk's planned shift away from regulating the speech of its users. Musk also recently released internal documents revealing how Twitter execs had influenced the platform, suspended users and reduced visibility on accounts and posts. Musk also recently released internal documents revealing how Twitter execs had influenced the platform, suspended users and reduced visibility on accounts and posts. According to Musk, Twitter's pervasive content moderation was a decision made , "at the highest levels of the company,". ... but without the knowledge of CEO Jack Dorsey, with former head of legal, policy and trust Vijaya Gadde playing a key role, Elon Musk, via Twitter. ... but without the knowledge of CEO Jack Dorsey, with former head of legal, policy and trust Vijaya Gadde playing a key role, Elon Musk, via Twitte

Crafty_Dog

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WSJ: Elon Musk and Tesla's stock price
« Reply #37 on: December 28, 2022, 05:34:45 AM »
The Great Tesla Stock Repricing
It’s healthy for the car maker, but can Elon Musk’s finances handle it?
Holman W. Jenkins, Jr. hedcutBy Holman W. Jenkins, Jr.


Dec. 27, 2022 6:13 pm ET


A car connected to a charger at a Tesla dealership in Littleton, Colo. June 27, 2021.
PHOTO: DAVID ZALUBOWSKI/ASSOCIATED PRESS

How much money Elon Musk has in the bank suddenly has become a general societal concern. Fans, investors and employees of his non-Tesla businesses, including Twitter, realize that it’s Mr. Musk’s Tesla wealth that helps keep them afloat.

Tesla shareholders realize how much they have been supporting his other endeavors, which compete for his attention.

In the latest news about one of the strangest corporate acquisitions ever, Twitter’s bankers are reportedly trying to reduce calls on Twitter’s faltering cash flow. How? By having Mr. Musk personally take over some of the company’s corporate debt, using yet more of his Tesla shares as collateral.

This would be a brave stand if it were really needed to preserve Twitter from bankruptcy. But things get complicated for two reasons: his board’s requirement that he put up $100 of Tesla stock for every $25 of borrowing, and Tesla’s epoch-making plunge, down another $14 on Tuesday.

Mr. Musk gets blame from his most loyal investors for triggering the selloff because of his Twitter engagement, his Tesla stock sales, the potential for margin calls, and his off-color tweeting.

But an occasion for re-rating Tesla was coming anyway. The company has shed a monumental $900 billion in market cap and is still richly priced for a car maker with its growth prospects.

For years analysts justified its share price by saying Tesla wasn’t a car company, it was another Apple. Meaning what? Apple isn’t some free-spirited, uninhibited innovator spinning off new industries in all directions. It’s basically one thing, an iPhone company.

Tesla is one thing, a car company. For a lot of reasons, profit margins on cars will never be as attractive as profit margins on iPhones. And just as no reason exists to believe Apple could dream up another money-spinner equivalent to the iPhone, no reason exists to believe Tesla will invent a product or service to transcend the competitive predicament of a car company.

I made myself unpopular years ago by pointing out that the established, union-employing companies dearest to politicians’ hearts would also be lured into making electric vehicles by the same subsidies that lured Tesla. These companies operate under an additional political dispensation, thanks to our fuel-economy regime, which lets them lose money on EVs to preserve the inflated pickup-truck profits they earn behind a 25% pickup import tax in place since LBJ.


Political favoritism has shifted against Tesla. Small example: The subsidized charging network the Biden administration is building devalues the competitive advantage Tesla created for itself by building its own charging network.

Clearly now, Tesla won’t have the electric-vehicle market to itself. Whatever growth that market affords—and fans and skeptics remain divided—will be fought over fiercely with other companies.

These makers have learned from Tesla—electric vehicles, for most buyers, are indulgence cars, like GM’s giant, sold-out electric Hummer, or Ford’s $56,000 Lightning pickup, or its $70,000 Mustang Mach-E GT.

They aren’t the tiny runabout Nissan Leafs or Prius-like hybrids that Ohio State University guru Chris Atkinson preaches are the best use of a lithium-ion battery if the goal really is to displace CO2 emissions.

The job of stock analysts is to rationalize the stock prices the world hands us, on the reasonable assumption that prices convey meaningful information. To solve the mystery of Tesla’s share price they resorted to the presumption that Mr. Musk would conjure some unforeseen source of future profits.

Government policy also is rationalized. Joe Biden, it’s explained, is subsidizing electric vehicles to reduce emissions. But does this really describe either motive or effect? He and his aides may have merely identified a way voters will let him spend money and channel it to business and labor groups that support him.

In obvious ways, EV subsidies actually encourage emissions: to build the cars, to mine the minerals for their batteries, to charge them up. In the great lacuna that’s seldom mentioned, if EV drivers are subsidized to use less gas, it becomes cheaper for someone else to use more.

The policy bubble hasn’t popped yet even if the Tesla bubble has, revaluing the car maker in a manner that is healthier and more realistic in the long run. The biggest test for Mr. Musk was always going to be the company’s repricing in line with the opportunities of selling cars into a crowded and competitive car market.

The timing is bad, from a pending expected recession to China’s Covid chaos, spiking minerals prices and declining consumer confidence. It isn’t the best time for Mr. Musk to encumber his Tesla stake with forced sales and possible margin calls. He suddenly has a lot riding on the Cybertruck, Tesla’s bid to catch a share of the protected profits that other car makers have long milked from the closed U.S. pickup truck market.
« Last Edit: December 28, 2022, 08:16:37 AM by Crafty_Dog »


ccp

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Nader target => Musk
« Reply #39 on: February 25, 2023, 01:06:44 PM »
I had no idea Nader was even still alive :

https://www.thestreet.com/technology/elon-musk-attacked-by-an-old-and-powerful-enemy

seems to me Nader should. target the Dem party for pushing green
perhaps Obama Biden
but of course he would not.

Crafty_Dog

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Elon Musk rapes BBC reporter
« Reply #40 on: April 12, 2023, 11:19:42 AM »
« Last Edit: April 12, 2023, 06:38:37 PM by Crafty_Dog »


ccp

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Musk :enemy of the Left
« Reply #42 on: May 29, 2023, 06:54:15 AM »
another hit piece :

https://www.washingtonpost.com/technology/2023/05/28/elon-musk-texas-spacex-boring-bastrop/

all he does is try to get our side to be able to speak

but that is not allowed
how dare him ruffle the Left feathers

Crafty_Dog

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ccp

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Re: Elon Musk
« Reply #44 on: June 22, 2023, 05:14:20 AM »
https://www.bbc.com/news/business-65981876

I would pay to see this; not sure who to place the bet on:

lets see Zuckerberg is 39 Musk 52. +1 for Zuck

Zuckerberg is a trained killer ( :wink:) ; Musk apparently has maybe more experience - > While Musk described himself as a "bookish" kid, the billionaire said he studied karate, judo, and Brazilian jiu jitsu his youth. The billionaire also wrestles. Last year, Musk said on Twitter that he managed to "throw the world champion sumo wrestler" at a party..

thus maybe a draw ?

Musk I believe is larger than Zuck thus +1 to Musk

So tough to say who would win

I know who I would want to win..........



ccp

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better idea
« Reply #45 on: June 23, 2023, 06:43:08 AM »
I was just thinking I would rather see Zuckerberg go against Daniel Penny....


 :evil:





Crafty_Dog

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Taiwan PO'd Musk calls it China's Hawaii
« Reply #49 on: September 15, 2023, 09:28:05 AM »
Taiwan Rebukes Elon Musk for Describing Island Democracy as China’s Hawaii
Taipei implies that the American entrepreneur has sold out to Beijing and points to the country’s censorship of X
By Joyu Wang
Sept. 14, 2023 9:01 am ET


TAIPEI—Elon Musk drew scathing criticism from the government of Taiwan after he described the self-ruled island as China’s equivalent of Hawaii, with the Taiwanese Foreign Ministry implying the Tesla CEO had sold himself to Beijing.

Speaking remotely at a technology conference in Los Angeles this week, the billionaire doubled down on earlier comments backing the contention of Communist Party leaders in Beijing that Taiwan is a part of China.

“From their standpoint, maybe it is analogous to Hawaii,” he said while addressing an audience at the All-In Summit, describing the island’s de facto independence from China as an arbitrary state of affairs that continues “mostly because the U.S. Pacific Fleet has stopped any sort of reunification effort by force.”

Taiwanese Foreign Ministry spokesman Jeff Liu hit back in an unusually blunt response at a press briefing on Thursday, pointing to the entrepreneur’s extensive business ties in China.

“We can’t tell whether or not Musk’s free will is for sale. But Taiwan is not for sale, that’s for sure,” Liu said.


Taiwanese Foreign Minister Joseph Wu said on Musk’s social-media platform X, ‘Mr. @ElonMusk other than money, there is something we call VALUES.’ PHOTO: SAM YEH/AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE/GETTY IMAGES
As other American executives rethink their relationship with China, Musk is pushing to deepen his ties with the world’s second-largest economy. Tesla has a sprawling factory in Shanghai and said in April that it plans to build a second one in the city to manufacture its Megapack energy-storage product. Top Chinese officials offered him a warm welcome when he visited China later in the spring.

Musk has repeatedly expressed views that align closely with Beijing’s position in recent months, including on Taiwan, despite his company’s complex relationship with China and declining market share in the country.

The Communist Party vows to take control of Taiwan—by force if necessary—despite never having ruled the island. Taipei has pursued closer ties with Washington in recent years, making its status a central flashpoint in relations between the U.S. and China.

After Musk said in a television interview in May that people should take China’s claims to Taiwan seriously, Taiwanese Foreign Minister Joseph Wu replied on the Musk-owned social-media platform X, formerly known as Twitter, “Mr. @ElonMusk other than money, there is something we call VALUES.”

Thursday marked the first time that Taiwan’s Foreign Ministry responded to Musk’s comments in a formal press briefing. Liu took a swipe at Musk’s willingness to do business with China’s authoritarian regime despite portraying himself as a free-speech advocate.

“Musk ignores that Chinese people have neither freedom of speech, nor internet freedom,” he said. “The fact remains that Chinese people still can’t access the social-media platform X today.”

Musk didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.


For decades, Taiwan has looked to its east coast as a safe haven to survive a Chinese invasion until allies, particularly the U.S., can arrive to assist. But PLA activity around the island’s east has thrown that strategy into question. Illustration: Adam Adada

Wu weighed in directly on X late on Wednesday, likening Musk’s acceptance of Chinese censorship to “turning off @Starlink to thwart #Ukraine’s counterstrike against #Russia.” That is a reference to the disclosure in a coming book that Musk denied Ukraine access to his satellite-based internet service to disrupt a drone attack on Russian ships based in Crimea.

The verbal sparring came amid a flurry of military activity in the region.

On Saturday, the guided-missile destroyer USS Ralph Johnson and Royal Canadian Navy frigate HMCS Ottawa sailed through the Taiwan Strait, according to the U.S. military, in a so-called freedom-of-navigation operation.

Two days later, the Chinese aircraft carrier Shandong sailed toward the western Pacific Ocean to the southeast of Taiwan on Monday for training, according to Taiwan’s military. On Wednesday, Taiwan’s defense ministry tracked 68 Chinese warplanes flying sorties near the island, with 40 of them entering its air defense identification zone.

September is when China’s military typically carries out drills, though the recent Chinese activity was also likely a response to the U.S. exercises, according to Lin Ying-yu, a Taipei-based military expert.