Elon Musk: Tech Genius! Green Warrior! Biz King! Good Oligarch?

c.a.

The Living Force
FOTCM Member
Elon loves and flourishes from his pump and run games.


Elon Musk just bought a $3 billion stake in Twitter Inc., because when you’re the world’s richest human you can toss billions around like poker chips.
This may be just another piece of performance art from Musk, who has alternately endorsed and pooh-poohed Bitcoin to great effect. He’s also taken to Twitter to hype altcoins such as Dogecoin and Shiba Inu, while simultaneously warning followers: “Don’t bet the farm on crypto!”


“True value is building products & providing services to your fellow human beings, not money in any form,” he cautioned, which may be easy advice to give when your net worth is $273 billion, your electric vehicle company is surging and you can shoot your own rockets into space.

A day later, Musk, who fashions himself a “free speech absolutist,” was on the social media platform again: “Given that Twitter serves as the de facto public town square, failing to adhere to free speech principles fundamentally undermines democracy. What should be done?” This time he didn’t bother with a poll, asking: “Is a new platform needed?”

All of this follows Musk’s ongoing battle with the Securities and Exchange Commission, which has been monitoring his Twitter posts for a very good reason: They move markets. Musk maintained in a court filing that the SEC’s oversight seems “calculated to chill his exercise” of free speech.

So despite ample room in which to exercise his speech — and aggressively trying to curtail the free speech of some of his critics — Musk evidently feels aggrieved. What’s not clear is why Twitter is his target.

His Twitter rants and raves have been wide-ranging and unfettered. He once tweeted, then deleted, a meme comparing Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to Hitler. He’s tweeted transphobic memes. He's slagged a British cave explorer as a “pedo guy.” That’s a lot of free speech, and Twitter hasn’t done a lot to curtail it.

One explanation for Musk’s sensitivity might be found in his libertarian leanings. Belated efforts by social media platforms to constrain some of the most virulent forms of political propaganda have raised the hackles of that crowd (along with far-rightists and Trumpistas). Now Musk has at least fired a shot across Twitter’s bow by purchasing 9.2% of its stock — which is also much less expensive than doing the same to Facebook (a 9.2% stake in Meta Inc. would have cost him about $58 billion).

Does Musk want to take over Twitter? I don’t think so. The company’s financials aren’t great, and running social media companies is hard. The car crash that is former President Donald Trump’s social media experiment, Truth Social, is a cautionary tale for Musk. Does Musk want to name some people to Twitter’s board of directors? Maybe. That would allow him to have some say over its affairs without spending too much time or money.

That’s worrisome, because it’s not ideal to have a free speech absolutist who isn’t absolutely in favor of free speech at the helm of — or even close to — a media company. Musk has already received a nice pop on his Twitter stake. The shares jumped 26% on Monday after his investment was disclosed in a regulatory filing. He’ll stick around longer, of course, and speculation that Twitter may be in play will further inflate his holdings.

But Musk probably isn’t in this for the money. He’s in it to make a point. And he’s in it to scare Twitter’s management. Somebody who has complained that his free speech is being “chilled” should, perhaps, be sensitive to those nuances. But that would assume that Musk is more of a philosopher than a bully.

This column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of the editorial board or Bloomberg LP and its owners.
To contact the author of this story: Timothy L. O'Brien at tobrien46@bloomberg.net

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Germany creates its own quagmire as its Tesla plant faulters without Russian Gaz.

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Mayb

Jedi
Reuters reports Twitter will hold an 'all-hands meeting' with employees at 1400 PST (or 1700 ET) to discuss Elon Musk's offer to purchase the social media platform.
Saudi Prince Alwaleed just rejected the offer, via Twitter:

"I don't believe that the proposed offer by @elonmusk ($54.20) comes close to the intrinsic value of @Twitter given its growth prospects. Being one of the largest & long-term shareholders of Twitter @Kingdom_KHC & I reject this offer."


TWTR board hired Goldman to "advise" it that the Musk $54.20 offer is too low. Only problem: Goldman has a SELL rating with a $30 price target.
 

c.a.

The Living Force
FOTCM Member
Obama must be proud of this useful idiot.


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Elon Musk. Twitter Inc. A $43 billion takeover offer. And a sharp intake of breath from the microblogging platform’s 217 million users.

Beyond his desire for an edit button and some vague comments about “free speech” and Twitter’s “extraordinary potential,” we can’t know for sure what Musk has in mind for the San Francisco-based company. Let’s set aside concerns over whether he would, as owner, be a responsible steward, and examine the cold, hard financials.


The richest person in the world’s $54.20-a-share offer (420 – geddit?) values Twitter at $43 billion. In the filing announcing the bid, Musk said that was 54% higher than Twitter’s share price at the end of January, just before he started building his existing 9.2% stake in the firm. It’s a particularly convenient date to pick: the stock was trading near its lowest level since mid-2020.

Character Limit

Musk started buying Twitter shares at their lowest point since July 2020

The average share price over the prior 200 days was actually closer to $57, which would make today’s offer something of a discount. And for all his talk of it being a “best-and-final offer,” everybody knows that Musk can afford to pay more. He’s worth $259 billion, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index.

The key question for investors is whether they could make better returns if they held onto their stock. Analysts don’t seem to think they could. At least, not any time soon. On average, their 12-month target price for Twitter stock—i.e. the price they expect it to hit at some stage in the next year—is just $44.42. And it has been a rough three years for investors. The stock has returned just 4.6% a year, massively underperforming the S&P 500’s 18% average returns. You could forgive them for thinking Musk’s offer might be a good opportunity to cash out.


Opportunity is the key word here. The stock has been tumbling ever since a disappointing earnings outlook in October. Chief Executive Officer Jack Dorsey has departed, with former Chief Technology Officer Parag Agrawal taking his seat. In other words, Musk is striking at a moment where the stock is low and the new leadership hasn’t had a meaningful opportunity to change that trajectory.

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Musk seems to believe that he can do just that. He told the board he wants to “unlock” the company’s potential. If that potential is so great, investors might quite rightly ask, shouldn’t they also benefit from the financial upside?

Social Capital

Twitter's market capitalization remains a fraction that of rival Meta Platforms
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Source: Bloomberg

Doing so would, of course, require patience. On the current earnings trajectory, Musk could expect to make just a 4% annual return on his ownership of Twitter by 2025. That’s a long way from covering the social media firm’s cost of capital. He would need to double earnings to get anywhere near that. Can Twitter get close to Meta Platforms Inc. financially? Whereas the Facebook parent made some $35 in profit last year per daily active user, Twitter made less than $10. That’s a lot of upside if Musk can get it right.

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irjO

The Living Force
FOTCM Member
I dunno, seems like Musk is doing a good thing trying to get control of Twitter and stop all their muting of non-mainstream voices. He's even roasting the Saudis in the process!

I’m kind of puzzled by his actions, on one hand he is doing spaceX along with NASA programs and God knows what secret programs might be doing in the background, he is very rich obviously and doesn’t do that much with its money (in the good sense) you would think he is 100% puppet of his master the “PTB major” like Bill Gates for example.
On the other hand, his comments and opinions are not that irrational, many times he is very coherent and points things towards the truth (in a few occasions that is) and then does movements like the one with Twitter that would make totally sense!
I would take the entire thing as distractions because at the end I think it is, but makes you wonder a little bit.
 

bjorb

The Living Force
FOTCM Member
I would take the entire thing as distractions because at the end I think it is, but makes you wonder a little bit.

Many are under the idea that only ruthlesness can bring entrepreneur success.

But the key is being a true innovator. OSIT.

Though other people say that Musk stole all the ideas that brought him to this point. I don't know, must be a lot of ideas he stole that happen to work out.
 

gottathink

The Living Force
FOTCM Member
It is tempting to assume very public figures, whether they are politicians or billionaires, are either with us or against us. That they somehow are not complicated individuals grappling with being human and their own egos as we all are.

I perceive him as bold, somewhat eccentric, and clever in his own way. He too has an ego; being both “good” and “bad” like the rest of us struggling along to figure ourselves out.

My guess is Elon Musk is an anomaly to the control system much like Trump. Whether he serves himself or others maybe is an internal struggle for him.
 

c.a.

The Living Force
FOTCM Member
I dunno, seems like Musk is doing a good thing trying to get control of Twitter and stop all their muting of non-mainstream voices. He's even roasting the Saudis in the process!
There's a a good number of syndicated news outlets that seem feel the same way. Fox news is just one of many that feel his intention's
are good for the public, (on social media platforms).

I'm not sure either what his final role will be in the coming changes currently underway.

Me, I think he continues to expose his true pantological agenda, which is also a good sign of common sense, perhaps.

Published April 14, 2022 4:59pm EDT Videos
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TECHNOLOGY
While Musk bids to buy Twitter, Californians chime in on what they would do

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MSNBC’s Katy Tur warned viewers on Thursday about the immense consequences that could follow if Tesla CEO Elon Musk could buys Twitter.

Following the tech mogul’s announcement that he has offered to purchase Twitter, liberal commentators and news figures criticized the move as potentially damaging to social media. On "Katy Tur Reports," Tur commented on Musk's proposal and discussed how Twitter affects democracy.

TWITTER LEFTISTS LOSE IT AFTER ELON MUSK OFFERS TO BUY THE SOCIAL MEDIA GIANT: ‘I AM FRIGHTENED’

"Twitter is very tricky, and it’s had a large effect on democracies abroad, but also here as we saw last year with the insurrection and as we saw in 2016 with the election," Tur said.

New York Times contributor Kara Swisher noted that Musk’s previous 9.1% Twitter stock purchase already put the company "under leverage" over whether to allow former President Trump to rejoin the platform.

"This is a company that is under leverage and a lot of people looked at it, but it has a lot of hair on it, including Donald Trump, speaking of hair, and whether to bring him back. You know, without Elon Musk, they have to think about if he runs for president and if he wins whether they can let him back on it, but they are under enormous pressure to do so," Swisher said.

"There are real and devastating consequences for using that platform to lie. And we’ve seen it, we’ve seen it happen," Tur argued.

She added, "It’s kind of funny, Elon Musk wants to buy it but there are massive, life and globe-altering consequences for just letting people run wild on the thing."

AXIOS WRITER PANICS ABOUT ‘WORST-CASE SCENARIO’ MUSK TWITTER TAKEOVER: BEHAVING LIKE ‘SUPERVILLIAN’

Trump was banned from Twitter back in Jan. 2021 following the Jan. 6 Capitol riot. Many conservatives called out Twitter at the time for what they considered a form of censorship. If Musk is successful and ends purchasing the company, many wondered whether he plans to reinstate Trump’s Twitter account.

Swisher noted how several Twitter employees have shown apprehension at this purchase and which could complicate the deal. Tur reported that Musk has since said that there is a "Plan B" should Twitter refuse his offer.

Katy Tur and NYT contributor Kara Swisher discuss Elon Musk's bid to own Twitter

Katy Tur and NYT contributor Kara Swisher discuss Elon Musk's bid to own Twitter (MSNBC)

"He was asked if there was a Plan B and he laughed and said ‘there is,’" Tur said.
"However, you feel about it, that’s what Tony Stark would say," Swisher added.

Lindsay Kornick is an associate editor for Fox News Digital. Story tips can be sent to lindsay.kornick@fox.com and on Twitter: @lmkornick


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Ryan

The Living Force
FOTCM Member
I dunno, seems like Musk is doing a good thing trying to get control of Twitter and stop all their muting of non-mainstream voices.
I agree. Musk is an inventor who by circumstances or destiny has assumed a very prominent role on the world stage, and has a lot more in common with regular folks than pathocrats like Schwabby and Gatesbaum. He's not going to save the world by himself, but when you factor in Trump, Putin and Xi - who knows what might happen yet?
 
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