In quite a lot of current articles like this one at Futurism, Elon Musk has been described as damaged. Particularly, one creator conversant in the Twitter buy mentioned, “Elon didn’t simply break Twitter, Twitter broke Elon Musk.”
To justify that assertion, the creator factors to a number of incidents that Twitter staff instructed him about. In a single case, Elon Musk is claimed to have retreated into his workplace at Twitter HQ and locked himself in. For causes not absolutely defined, Twitter staff virtually referred to as the police as a result of they reportedly had causes to imagine he’d hurt himself.
The creator claims that as public opinion of Musk fell, Musk’s psychological state fell with it, as a result of he cares deeply about his public popularity.
To be clear, all of this data comes second and third-hand. Anybody alongside the way in which might have mentioned one thing unfaithful or be exaggerating the reality. However, it does come from a reputable creator who’s well-respected within the discipline for this kind of behind-the-scenes reporting and writing, so it’s not simply an web rumor.
However, whether or not it’s true or not, it’s one thing that ought to give EV advocates pause. Anybody can fall prey to psychological well being issues, so we’ve acquired to suppose lengthy and onerous about having one man have a lot affect and management over the trade.
I Don’t Imply This Disparagingly
Earlier than I delve deeper into this problem, I wish to make it fairly clear that I’m not scripting this to harm Elon Musk. It’s well-known that I’ve some deep disagreements with the man, particularly over LGBT rights points and a few of his less-informed statements about firearms rules. However, on the identical time, I’ve additionally written articles about how we must always deal with eccentric geniuses like Elon Musk higher if we wish to thrive as a civilization and even invited Elon Musk to have lunch and shoot at Cybertruck steel.
Like most different CleanTechnica writers, I used to admire and look as much as Musk. He had principally taken a cussed and unchanging trade and drug it into the EV transition kicking and screaming. He additionally has been a significant power for reforming house journey, one other trade/endeavor that had fallen into a foul rut.
So, I’m actually not making an attempt to harm his popularity. I’m genuinely involved for the man and type of perceive what he’s going by way of (I personally know precisely what it’s wish to fall for miserable far proper doomsday propaganda). However, on the identical time, we’re coping with a difficulty that deeply impacts the way forward for our species, so there’s not room for limitless slack right here.
The Drawback: Tesla Is Close to-Synonymous With EVs
Anybody who is aware of a lot in regards to the EV trade is aware of that Tesla is far-and-away the most important participant. Tesla’s promoting the vast majority of EVs. At the least in the USA, the corporate has the biggest, most dependable charging community. The corporate’s identify is so deeply related to EVs that almost all anti-EV rhetoric is focused at Tesla’s shortcomings, even when different EVs don’t share them.
It doesn’t assist that almost all EV followers are additionally Tesla followers and sometimes Stans. When one thing goes mistaken with one other firm’s EVs (particularly charging), dozens of Stans will present as much as inform everybody, “Ought to have purchased a Tesla.” or, “Don’t purchase any EV that isn’t a Tesla.” I believe a very good chunk of those accounts are faux, however I do know many are actual folks.
So, for higher or worse, we’re now ready the place if Tesla falls, the EV transition in the USA and in lots of different locations additionally falls.
Questionable Choices Have Been Made
I do know everybody isn’t going to agree with my opinion right here, however I don’t suppose Elon Musk’s questionable decision-making has been restricted to his bombastic Twitter conduct.
For one, the corporate has invested some huge cash in a state that’s hostile to it. Positive, Texas welcomes the manufacturing unit close to Austin and the entire jobs that go along with it, however on the identical time, they nonetheless don’t enable Tesla to immediately promote its vehicles within the state. There are numerous workarounds, however Cybertrucks being constructed on the Texas manufacturing unit may need to be shipped out of state and introduced again for Texas patrons.
In different phrases, getting conservatives to say good issues about you on Twitter for letting them doesn’t imply they’ll begin supporting EVs.
Talking of the Cybertruck, now we have to contemplate how lengthy it has been since that announcement. I personally haven’t favored the factor from the start, however it grew on many individuals (like a fungus). However, altering opinions among the many Tesla Standom doesn’t imply the corporate’s incapability to deliver the factor to marketplace for 4 years (probably 5 years earlier than full manufacturing) goes away.
I get that progressive and groundbreaking merchandise take time, however we are able to’t assume that there aren’t any alternative prices to delays like this. As an alternative of creating the truck Tesla’s first pickup, Musk might have simply performed a small pickup like the favored Ford Maverick on the identical platform because the Mannequin 3 and Y. At the least one such Tesla pickup has been in-built a storage, so Tesla might have introduced that to market shortly and made cash whereas taking time getting the Cybertruck proper.
What’s unhappy is that analysts and writers instructed Elon Musk that the Cybertruck wasn’t a good suggestion from the start. As an alternative of listening to critics, or higher but having folks inside the corporate to present him counterpoints, he appears to have surrounded himself with sure males who inform him what he desires to listen to.
One other questionable choice is the corporate’s method to gigacasting. On the floor, it seems to be a very good method to lowering automobile manufacturing prices, however a broad number of automotive analysts and writers are warning the trade that this might result in unrepairable vehicles after collisions. There are additionally issues with a minimum of one buyer discovering a cracked body on a brand new automotive constructed this fashion!
I do know the Stans are going to mob the feedback telling me that I’m mistaken about all of this, and I’ll get the same old “Elon Musk has achieved greater than you ever will!” tripe. However, I’m nonetheless of the opinion that avoidable errors have been made by a person who seems to be shedding grip on actuality.
Even when I’m fully mistaken, it’s by no means sensible to place too lots of your eggs in a single basket. The trade wants to attain a extra numerous mixture of leaders.
Featured picture by Tesla.