Musk: Attacks on Trump pointless
In a Wednesday interview, billionaire inventor and tech entrepreneur Elon Musk said that constant attacks and protests against US President Donald Trump will achieve little in tackling issues such as climate change.
Speaking to the website Gizmodo, Musk said that the president won’t yield to protesters and is more likely to be swayed by reason.
“This is something we need to strive for and the more voices of reason that the President hears, the better,” the mogul told reporters via Twitter Direct Message. “Simply attacking him will achieve nothing. Are you aware of a single case where Trump bowed to protests or media attacks? Better that there are open channels of communication,” he added.
A number of President Trump’s policy positions have stirred controversy, including his stance on climate change, which he has referred to as a “hoax” since as far back as 2012.
Shortly after Trump’s inauguration, the White House’s website page on climate change disappeared. Trump has also signaled his intention to repeal Barack Obama’s Clean Power Plan.
Musk, who is an advisor on Trump’s Strategic and Policy Forum, is known for supporting clean energy through ventures such as Tesla Motors, which builds electric cars, and SolarCity, which focuses on renewable energy.
“CO2 [carbon dioxide] isn’t exactly pollution, but it does cause warming and slight acidification of water if very large quantities are dug from deep underground and added to the surface cycle,” he explained, adding “we won’t ever go to zero CO2, but the rate over time should be dropped far below what it is today.”
Musk proposed achieving this through a “carbon tax” that would progressively tax activities producing greater carbon more heavily taxed.
“Start low and increase it until the desired outcome is achieved. This can be offset by a reduction in other taxes, like sales tax, which is quite regressive. This is analogous to taxing cigarettes and alcohol more than fruits and vegetables, which everybody agrees makes sense. We should have higher taxes on the things that science says are probably bad for us than those that are probably good for us,” he said.
In his interview with Gizmodo, Musk expanded upon his tweets describing Tillerson as a “competent” CEO who also supports the idea of a carbon tax. Other members of Trump’s cabinet team have been described as climate change skeptics, such as his pick to head the Environmental Protection Agency head, Scott Pruitt, though Pruitt did concede that human activity is affecting the climate “in some manner” during a hearing before Senator Bernie Sanders.
Tesla chief executive Elon Musk, a constant source of intrigue (to me at least), is busy positioning himself as the “voice of reason” that lies between Silicon Valley and the White House.
I’ve written at length about President Trump’s relationship with the technology heartland.
On the one side, you have the likes of Paypal founder and major investor Peter Thiel, who is now very much part of Trump’s inner circle.
On the other, you have tech bigwigs like Apple’s Tim Cook and Alphabet’s Larry Page, who were cooperative but mostly quiet when honouring the then President-Elect’s invite to meet him at Trump Tower last year.
Little has been said about that meeting since. The silence from most of Silicon Valley has been deafening – to the frustration of many here – but you get the sense that could all change if the companies are called upon to implement any policy decisions they consider unethical.
For instance, there’s a growing list of employees at tech firms who have noted they will refuse to work on a “database” of minorities, if asked. All hypothetical, of course.
Until such a thing happens it seems much of the tech elite are just keeping their heads down.
musk actually makes sense here:
“Simply attacking him will achieve nothing. Are you aware of a single case where Trump bowed to protests or media attacks? Better that there are open channels of communication,”
he then moves on to promoting a carbon tax..they never give up..