What Should Liberals Do About Elon Musk?

Eric Medlin

History instructor. Writer. Rising star in the world of affordable housing.

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74 Responses

  1. Oscar Gordon
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    says:

    Let’s just say I have little faith in the ability of the further lefts ability to manage an ego like Musk without shooting their own damn foot off and making an enemy of him.Report

  2. North
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    I dislike the base concept that liberals qua liberals have much of a problem with Musk. I mean he clearly violates SEC rules by using his celebrity to inflate stock assets to his own profit and so should be fined etc accordingly but the people he mostly ticks off seem to be leftists on the verging on antiliberal fringe. As for Twitter- I wish him well and hope Musk burns it to the ground.

    That said the idea of enlisting him to help fight climate change seems like good idea to me. Dunno if Musk himself would go for it though. Most billionaires don’t seem to have much mental interest in ideas they don’t come up with themselves (or claim to anyhow).Report

    • InMD in reply to North
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      I’m with you. When Elon does good he is good. When Elon does bad he is bad. I won’t shed tears if his taxes go up or the workers on the Tesla floor decide to unionize but I don’t see him as an enemy either.

      Generally I don’t think we should be in the business of lionizing billionaires (and I gather he has a… strange cult of personality) but of all of those to specifically go after he strikes me as a strange choice, for the reasons Marche states below. His companies have at least in theory developed some useful things that could eventually scale for everyone. If we’re going to have billionaires that’s what we want them to do, as opposed to just playing financial market roulette or strip and sell value they didn’t create.Report

    • Doctor Jay in reply to North
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      The entire concept behind Tesla is to fight climate change. I don’t think anyone needs to “enlist” Musk to fight climate change. He’s already done more to fight climate change than most people on the planet. Consciously.

      I do think most will have a hard time getting him to do anything other than exactly what he thinks is the best thing to do. And he’s definitely not an orthodox thinker.Report

      • Michael Cain in reply to Doctor Jay
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        In a different field, Elon’s SpaceX is the only outfit that looks like they started from “return humans from a Mars landing” and worked backwards to what they needed. Heck, even NASA’s Artemis project lunar landing and return reeks of, “…and then SpaceX provides a miracle or two.”

        Now, the question is whether Congress will continue to pour all that money down the SLS/Orion rat hole, or just give SpaceX the (relatively smaller amount of) money to just do it.Report

    • Oscar Gordon in reply to North
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      says:

      It does seem interesting how people seem to be equating Twitter with free speech, as if the loss of Twitter would somehow gravely impact the free exchange of memes ideas.Report

  3. Chris
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    says:

    Interesting post, Elon.Report

  4. CJColucci
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    Why should liberals, as such, “do” anything about Elon Musk in particular? And do they want to? (Calling him out for being an a*****e doesn’t count as “doing” anything.) When he breaks rules or laws, he should be whacked like any other rich miscreant. And Musk may be a useful poster boy for policies that might mitigate the malign influence that the uber-rich in general — not just Musk — have over entirely too much of the world. I suppose there is a “non-zero” number of Twitterati and so forth that make stupid noises about Musk. It’s a big country, after all. But as far as I can tell there is no Musk problem to solve and damn few people, especially damn few consequential people, who think there is one and want to do something about him, in particular. Pointing and laughing, again, doesn’t count.Report

    • Chip Daniels in reply to CJColucci
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      Wait wait wait.
      You’re saying that liberals want Elon Musk treated just like any other citizen??

      Not to be treated as the Big Man On Horseback, the Cincinattus who is given complete power to solve all problems while we all stand around watching in awed and humble silence?

      Or to be treated as an Enemy Of The State and have the government pass laws that target him for daring to speak out in opposition?

      This idea of yours, that he is no different than you or I, seems radical. No wonder liberals are struggling.Report

  5. Fish
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    I propose that liberals do…nothing…about Elon Musk.Report

  6. Pinky
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    I’m no expert here, but hasn’t he done more for green energy technology than anyone else?Report

  7. Marchmaine
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    “He is both a peddler of conservative ideas and an obscenely wealthy individual”

    He’s clearly wealthy probably obscenely so; but I can’t tell if Liberals can no longer tell what conservative ideas are or there are no conservatives whose ideas matter — probably both — but the very notion that Elon Musk is a peddler of them is a strange turn of events.

    *Side note, as I’m fond of saying, the problem with Billionaires isn’t that they *have* money its that they don’t *spend* enough of it. Musk is kind of a weird use-case. On the one hand he takes his money and spends it on thing that builds other things; real things: cars, spaceships, solar panels, tunnels. Counter-point, he does tend to siphon govt subsidies for many of his projects. Counter-counter-point… govt subsidies are designed to attract capital by reducing risk/costs – so he’s chasing high risk endeavors where the govt wants high risk investment… spaceships, green energy, etc. But at the end of the day, unlike most billionaires (esp. Tech Billionaires like Musk) he’s actually built somethings that might actually be useful – esp. on things Liberals say they want more of … hence the govt. subsidies. Which is a long side note to say that Musk is a weird dude doing billionaire things that liberals want billionaires to do. Except mess with Twitter. Weird.Report

  8. Damon
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    I pledge that if I ever achieve “Musk” $$ I will burn all social media to the ground.Report

    • Marchmaine in reply to Damon
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      I pledge that if I ever achieve Musk $$ I will end AI. Unless that’s how I achieved all my Musk $$.Report

    • Pinky in reply to Damon
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      The trick would be killing Twitter so that something like it doesn’t grow back. Or is there some possible way to reform it? For some reason I think about Reddit, a horrible mess but at least it has groupings. I wonder if that’d work to make Twitter a bit more fraternal. Like instead of just peer pressure to tear down, there would be peer pressure to cooperate. Definitely the blue checkmark semi-approved status has got to go. And there’s truth to the idea that a $1 per year membership fee changes people’s conduct.Report

  9. Kazzy
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    About a decade ago, a pitcher named Armando Galarraga was one out from a perfect game when an umpire blew a call and cost him it. The call was obviously wrong and bad, clear to everyone in the moment and more egregious on replay. Folks were outraged. All, except, Galarraga, who famously shrugged it off. He was lauded for his composure and sportsmanship and everything else.

    A few days or weeks later, he lost his cool over some other call he disagreed with, flipped out, and, if memory serves, was ejected from the game. Suddenly the hero and model for sportsmanship had a more complicated public image. On one of the talking head shows where they were discussing whether Galaragga was a hero or a villain, someone said something that stuck with me [paraphrased]:

    “You’re never as good as you seem at your best moment nor as bad as you seem at your worst moment.”

    I haven’t followed Musk closely. At least one friend is a bit of a fan boi of his but I honestly know little more about him than he is rich, smart, and weird. But he also seems like a good encapsulation of that idea: He’s neither the hero he seems to be when he’s doing good nor the villain he seems to be when he’s doing bad. He, like most folks, is somewhere in between and because he doesn’t fit neatly into a box, we struggle with him and end up with think pieces like this.

    What should ANYONE do about Elon Musk? I dunno… evaluate his individual actions/words and respond accordingly. Why is anything more needed?Report

  10. John Puccio
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    “Liberals would very much like to silence Musk or curb his influence.”

    Perhaps what “liberals” could do is embrace the liberal idea of not silencing people they disagree with … Start there.Report

    • Chip Daniels in reply to John Puccio
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      What’s wrong with us stripping Musk’s companies of their special privileges as punishment for saying things we dislike?Report

      • Jaybird in reply to Chip Daniels
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        Just get it through the legislature first.

        Unless it started as a ballot initiative. Then have a second one.Report

        • Marchmaine in reply to Jaybird
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          says:

          50-years of stoned Libertarian theory on how to end all Govt. Subsidies landed on Disney and Electric Cars.

          Which proves that and $$ spent on think-tanks and policy wonks is a wasted $.Report

      • John Puccio in reply to Chip Daniels
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        says:

        You mean like what Desantis is attempting with Disney in Florida?

        Do you really want to live in a country where thought crimes are punished because they can be?

        I personally don’t.Report

        • Chip Daniels in reply to John Puccio
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          says:

          Sorry. You already do.

          The support for authoritarianism is surging and doesn’t look like it is going to crest anytime soon.Report

          • Jaybird in reply to Chip Daniels
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            It’s different when authoritarianism goes through the legislature first, though.

            If you want to argue that there should be a set of things that don’t fall under the jurisdiction of the government except to protect those things, I might be willing to entertain the idea… I mean, I know that the game is iterated and all… but, in the short term, I think that defining anything the government does that you happen to not like as “authoritarianism” has been attempted before by people who smoked a lot more marijuana than you do.

            And they failed.Report

            • Chip Daniels in reply to Jaybird
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              Different why?Report

              • Jaybird in reply to Chip Daniels
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                It has to do with the nature of representative government versus the nature of authoritarianism.

                Like, if you see the two things as different at all, of course.

                If you don’t, it might be confusing why something that would be bad if a dictator did it would be any different when it went through a representative legislature.

                “I’m only interested in outcomes, I don’t care about the process!”

                “Yeah, well, I’ll let you get back to critiquing authoritarianism, then.”Report

              • Chip Daniels in reply to Jaybird
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                says:

                I’m not seeing any form of reasoning in here.Report

              • Jaybird in reply to Chip Daniels
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                It has to do with going through a particular process via the representatives of the people first.

                If you don’t see that as relevant at all, then you don’t see that as relevant at all.

                Personally, I’m a fan of there being a large set of things that count as not being under the government’s jurisdiction. Then we can say “hey, the government is sticking its fingers in pies that are not its pies to stick its fingers in!” and then call that authoritarian.

                What are the pies we’re upset about here?
                Zoning? Taxation?

                Only crazy people don’t think that zoning or taxation ought to fall under the government’s legislative powers.

                And this isn’t even an executive order or anything like that. It’s a bill passed by the legislature before being signed into law by the executive.Report

              • Chip Daniels in reply to Jaybird
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                Your logic is flawed and if followed will lead you to bizarre places like a generalized hostility to a republican form of governance.

                But maybe reflect on your use of “going through the process” as the operative words.

                That maybe it isn’t a matter of the process but the intent and outcome.Report

              • Jaybird in reply to Chip Daniels
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                says:

                Your logic is flawed and if followed will lead you to bizarre places like a generalized hostility to a republican form of governance.

                Heh. Hee hee hee.

                But, anyway, there is an out if you believe that there are areas outside of the government’s jurisdiction.

                But if you believe that everything falls under the government’s jurisdiction, you might find yourself in a situation where you’re yelling “NO DON’T LEGISLATE LIKE THAT!” instead of “Nunya”.

                This might be one of those things where you can’t comprehend something not being your business, though. If you live in a world where everything that isn’t condemned is therefore celebrated, I imagine that someone saying “Nunya” comes across as them hiding something from you.Report

              • Philip H in reply to Jaybird
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                And this isn’t even an executive order or anything like that. It’s a bill passed by the legislature before being signed into law by the executive.

                With no committee debate and no details. None of the normal legislative process was followed. It was basically the Governor asking the legislature – in a special session called to rubber stamp his preferred gerrymandered congressional district map – to do away with this district to retaliate against a private business exercising its First Amendment rights. No way you slice it, there’s nothing good there in process, nevermind the actual bill – which essentially increases local taxes in two counties to account for the services the counties will have to provide, including debt service. Call me nuts, but Republicans increasing taxes in two counties to get back at a business that might have embarrassed the governor is bad process, bad policy and a really bad look in an election year.Report

              • Jaybird in reply to Philip H
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                Well, every dark cloud has a silver lining.

                I imagine that Florida will turn against Desantis and make him politically toxic before 2024.

                Let’s face it: Whomever wins in 2024 will do it by winning Florida too.

                So this is, ironically, good news for the Democrats in the long term.

                Hurray.Report

              • Michael Cain in reply to Philip H
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                The obvious question to ask seems to be, “The Florida constitution gives counties the authority to create special districts within their jurisdictions. What stops the two Florida counties from creating two special districts which, combined, occupy the same space as the Reedy district, with the same powers, with whatever directors Disney tells them to put on the boards, and inherit Reedy’s assets and obligations?”Report

              • Chip Daniels in reply to Jaybird
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                says:

                Like I said if you begin with an flawed premise then add a string of poorly reasoned connections you will find yourself in a very strange place.

                To start with:
                Why do you start with the premise that authoritarianism “has to do with” going through a particular process?
                How is this supported? Even a casual glance at 20th Century history shows that this is false. All manner of authoritarian and democratic governments have similar processes, with wildly different results.
                Authoritarianism doesn’t “have to do with” any particular process.

                Second, the shifting to “areas outside of government’s jurisdiction” is disconnected from what proceeded it- is limiting the scope of government in opposition to legislative process, or in congruence with it, or entirely unrelated?

                And in any case, once again a cursory glance at history shows plenty of authoritarian governments which had limited scope, things that are “nunya” but are terrifyingly oppressive.

                So none of this seems to have any logical structure that leads to any conclusion.Report

              • Jaybird in reply to Chip Daniels
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                says:

                Why do you start with the premise that authoritarianism “has to do with” going through a particular process?

                I am saying that there are processes that can be more authoritarian and processes that can be less authoritarian.

                The “representative democracy” one is on the less side.

                “BUT YOU ADMIT THAT IT *CAN* BE AUTHORITARIAN!”

                Of course it can.

                This is why I’m a fan of areas that fall outside of government jurisdiction.

                All manner of authoritarian and democratic governments have similar processes, with wildly different results.

                Um. No? They seem to all appeal to being “the voice of the people”, that’s for sure! But the 20th century had stuff like Germany, the US, *AND* the USSR.

                Authoritarianism doesn’t “have to do with” any particular process.

                But the ones that are representative democracies are different than the autocracies.

                Second, the shifting to “areas outside of government’s jurisdiction” is disconnected from what proceeded it- is limiting the scope of government in opposition to legislative process, or in congruence with it, or entirely unrelated?

                It’s connected to the whole “authoritarian” thing. If there are areas where it does not matter whether or not you are one of the “authorities”, then I get to say “Nunya”.

                And in any case, once again a cursory glance at history shows plenty of authoritarian governments which had limited scope, things that are “nunya” but are terrifyingly oppressive.

                Sure. Democracies as well.

                But the representative democracies were different than the dictatorships.

                So none of this seems to have any logical structure that leads to any conclusion.

                It’s a follow-on to your assertion that “The support for authoritarianism is surging and doesn’t look like it is going to crest anytime soon.”

                You seem to think that just getting the right authorities in authority will fix the problem.

                I think that getting more stuff to be “Nunya” will alleviate the problem somewhat.Report

              • Chip Daniels in reply to Jaybird
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                says:

                You appear to be arguing that authoritarianism flows from flawed structures and is independent of the character of the people operating the structures.

                If so, “citation needed” and ” linear chain of logic needed”

                Like, provide support for your assertion that representative democracies have different processes than dictatorships.Report

              • Jaybird in reply to Chip Daniels
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                says:

                Like, provide support for your assertion that representative democracies have different processes than dictatorships.

                You mean the difference between a bill becoming a law and a single guy writing a document and then saying “this is now the law”?

                Surely you cannot be asking what you wrote.Report

              • Chip Daniels in reply to Jaybird
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                says:

                So the Politburo writing a law and Stalin saying “this is now the law” are different things?

                Or, is the Politburo passing a law different than the US Congress passing a law?Report

              • Jaybird in reply to Chip Daniels
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                So the Politburo writing a law and Stalin saying “this is now the law” are different things?

                Yes.

                Or, is the Politburo passing a law different than the US Congress passing a law?

                How is the Politburo chosen?

                Direct election? Appointment?

                Because, believe it or not, “representative democracy” is a term I used deliberately.Report

              • Chip Daniels in reply to Jaybird
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                says:

                You need to explain the existence of elected bodies which are authoritarian.Report

              • Jaybird in reply to Chip Daniels
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                says:

                Then we’re worse off than I thought.Report

          • John Puccio in reply to Chip Daniels
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            You didn’t answer my question, but no matter. Follow up Q:

            When did you learn to stop worrying and love authoritarianism?Report

      • North in reply to Chip Daniels
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        Do we approve of Republicans doing it to Disney?Report

        • Saul Degraw in reply to North
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          This another example of Republicans doing the right thing for all the wrong reasons. I am not sure special districts like that should exist in a civilized democracy.Report

          • Chip Daniels in reply to Saul Degraw
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            says:

            It’s not even the right thing.

            Little discussed is that the legislation does NOT remove all special districts.

            Only Disney’s, but all others are still in effect.

            And amidst all the chuckling over how the Mighty Mouse is going to kick DeSantis’ butt, is the fact that every medium and large company in Florida is watching and self-policing pretty much as they are doing in China.

            And like I mentioned yesterday, even being a loyal party member is no guarantee of safety. Disney was a faithful funder of the Party for decades, but one modest comment made them the Enemy.Report

            • Michael Cain in reply to Chip Daniels
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              It eliminates all districts created by the state — as opposed to by cities and counties — before 1968. There are a handful of other districts that qualify. They’re the reason that districts being abolished are allowed to petition the legislature for reinstatement. The legislature will, of course, reinstate every district that asks except Disney.Report

            • Pinky in reply to Chip Daniels
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              Just for clarity’s sake, you’re saying that Disney has been loyally Republican until they did one thing that angered Republicans?Report

              • Jaybird in reply to Pinky
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                They reliably remove gay scenes from movies for the Chinese audience as well as minimize people of color on Chinese-release movie posters.

                What could possibly be more Republican than that?Report

              • Chip Daniels in reply to Pinky
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                Yes.
                Not partisan Republican, but has been a reliable donor to Republican candidates and causes since forever.Report

              • Pinky in reply to Chip Daniels
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                Most big companies donate to candidates on both sides of the aisle. I’m not asking this to put you on the spot, but can you back up the implication that Disney is more reliable in donating to the right than the left? The campaign contribution data is a mess to go through, and I’ve never been able to do it. As for issues advocacy, do you include social justice causes as being on the liberal side? If so I’d be stunned if Disney donated more to conservative causes than liberal ones.Report

              • Chip Daniels in reply to Pinky
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                says:

                OK I see we are in the “He was never a loyal party member” territory.

                Disney has always carefully managed to avoid the appearance of partisanship, but they have always been a reliable donor to candidates who promise things like deregulation and lower taxes.

                It is only in recent years that the “social justice” issues, AKA human sexuality issues have become important enough to mark them as Enemies Of The State, and even then, it isn’t because of anything they have done, but by what they have said.

                Like, there is nothing about Disney’s policies which marks them as particularly liberal by American standards.
                Had the head of Disney not made a statement about the Florida law, none of this would be happening.

                Disney went from Responsible Corporate Citizen to Enemy Of The State in the span of a single sentence.Report

              • Pinky in reply to Chip Daniels
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                For years Disney has been reliably pushing the liberal line in its productions and its charitable donations. I’m surprised anyone would argue with that. They are “passive-progressive” (to steal a word from Red Letter Media) in that they’ll edit out their agenda for international markets, and maybe some liberals don’t consider them sufficiently loyal. But they’re as liberal a company as those two hippies who make ice cream.Report

              • Chip Daniels in reply to Pinky
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                I can see how you would get here, if you track the movement of pro-LGBTQ statements and the content of their movies.
                And also if you consider their Republican policies on taxes and regulation to be unimportant compared to the socially progressive stuff.

                But that raises a question, of why they would do such a thing.
                Like was the plot of Frozen dictated by the progressives in the corporate boardroom, or was it a response to the market demand for content that is socially progressive?Report

              • Pinky in reply to Chip Daniels
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                says:

                “I can see how you would get here, if you track the movement of pro-LGBTQ statements and the content of their movies.”

                I’d say the social agenda in general, but I’m glad we can both acknowledge this point.

                “And also if you consider their Republican policies on taxes and regulation to be unimportant compared to the socially progressive stuff.”

                I think any progressive company is going to feel very strongly about *its own* taxes and regulation.

                “But that raises a question, of why they would do such a thing. Like was the plot of Frozen dictated by the progressives in the corporate boardroom, or was it a response to the market demand for content that is socially progressive?”

                That’s a complicated question. Entertainment companies work in both art and finance, and artists typically do lean liberal. I think the inclination is to get mainstream enough for the finance people and liberal enough for the artists, and that always means nudging the window leftward. You can talk about the country moving more progressive on sexual issues as if it’s been organic, but you’d have to admit that movies and TV have been riding that edge since 1968 or so.Report

              • CJColucci in reply to Pinky
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                Remember the old joke about the ambitious starlet who was so dumb she f****d the writer? There are lots of dumb “starlets” out there who have no idea who really calls the tune in the entertainment industry.Report

              • Marchmaine in reply to Chip Daniels
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                I dunno dude… here’s the link to Open Secrets:
                https://www.opensecrets.org/orgs/walt-disney-co/totals?id=D000000128#totals-affiliates

                Overwhelming support for Dems among individual contributors and affiliates.

                There’s one big mystery that perhaps someone with better google skills can track down… it seems that a single contributor funded the MAGA America First Action PAC to the tune of about $10M — but, this is the weird part, A1A is funded by “dark money” non-disclosed donors via American Policies… so I have no idea how that $10M donation is tracked/allocated. You’d think there would be some headline to the effect that Disney Big Whig funds MAGA thingy (and maybe there is!) but I couldn’t find it.

                Even so… if that’s the case, it’s 1 guy at Disney vs. every other Donation.Report

              • Pinky in reply to Marchmaine
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                I don’t like to rely on the support of individual contributors, even board members, as an indicator of a company’s politics. I’ve looked through Open Secrets before, and unless there’s some trick to the site, I can never find substantial donations. That’s why I posed the question as: can you demonstrate that the company supports rightward candidates more than leftward? If there’s a way to do that, it would answer the question. Barring that, I’m going to look at the company’s social agenda spending and of course their product.Report

              • Chip Daniels in reply to Marchmaine
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                The entertainment industry is like Toontown.
                The on-stage talent is liberal, the suits, less so.

                In fact, this latest escapade shows that.
                The suits at Disney didn’t give a rip about the law, but the Toons demanded it.Report

              • Marchmaine in reply to Chip Daniels
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                Other than Marvel Entertainment there’s no way that the split is suits vs. talent.

                FX: $425k (D) to $2k (R)
                Disney Studios: $341k (D) to $0.2k (R) [236.00]
                ESPN: $197k (D) to $7.5k (R)

                The only one with near parity?

                21st Century Fox: $198k (D) to $165k (R)

                This is Suits and Talent together.

                Except Marvel… who’s the defector? Hulk? Maybe Ironman? Probably that country f*ck Green Arrow.Report

              • Chip Daniels in reply to Marchmaine
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                says:

                Hey maybe I’m wrong then.

                Maybe the entire entertainment industry has migrated over to the Democrats.

                What we need are some thinkpieces explaining the astonishing collapse of Republican support among private business, and suggestions for how to win them back.Report

              • Marchmaine in reply to Chip Daniels
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                says:

                Heh… ‘maybe’ . Probably needs more study. Has anyone checked in on the Universities? How are those folks? Still tweed coated curmudgeons?

                I think I read those think pieces you’re looking for… they were breathless concern over people who could afford boats but not space ships.Report

              • Chip Daniels in reply to Marchmaine
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                What I am seeing is the estrangement of the Republican Party from almost all institutions.

                There was a time, let’s say in the 1950s era when virtually every institution like universities, churches, businesses, high culture and civic organizations were on very warm terms with Republicans.

                Maybe it began with culture, where writers like Mailer and Vonnegut and the Beats and the Blacklisted Hollywood figures bitterly criticized the American conservatives.

                And maybe it was the universities that found themselves at odds with the social policies of the Republicans.

                But recently it seems like the Republicans have estranged themselves even from Wall Street and the free market crowd, and have nothing but scorn for civic groups like Scouts and any organization that can be accused of being “woke”.

                This seems remarkable.Report

              • Pinky in reply to Chip Daniels
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                It’s called the Gramscian march, and I’m surprised you’re just noticing it.

                If Wall Street money were conservative, New York would be a Republican city and state. The largest financial institutions have made themselves look too big to fail to both parties.

                As for other institutions, I have to quote a tweet I saw recently from David Burge (I don’t know anything about him, so that’s not a recommendation, it’s a citation):

                1. Identify a respected institution.
                2. kill it.
                3. gut it.
                4. wear its carcass as a skin suit, while demanding respect.
                #leftiesReport

              • Chip Daniels in reply to Pinky
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                says:

                Explain how that happens, that leftists “kill” institutions.

                As opposed to, just persuading their fellow citizens of the rightness of their cause.

                What you’re doing here is validating my criticism that Republicans refuse to accept any such thing as a loyal opposition. Any opposition to Republicans is by definition unfair and illegitimate.

                For example, I favor strict gun control laws. But I accept that my position is not popular. I don’t doubt the righteousness of gun control, but I accept that for whatever reason a majority of my fellow Americans have rejected my ideas, but they are still good and loyal citizens.

                I’m not getting that from Republicans.Report

              • Pinky in reply to Chip Daniels
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                says:

                That tweet was a little bit cute, and I’m not going to defend it as gospel. It is true though that the left, starting in about 1968, got serious about joining institutions such as in the press and education, and broadcasting their messages to the next generation. I’d say they tend to destroy those organizations by making them lose focus and turn political.

                You mentioned the Scouts. The Boy Scouts had a traditional purpose that kept them focusing on building fires and treating wounds. The Girl Scouts didn’t have as strong an identity, and they became more radicalized over the years. I don’t think the right ever considered scouting the enemy, but they criticized and fought things they thought were wrong about it. Looking at it on a Gramscian scale, I think it’s pretty obvious that the Scouts have been stripped of their traditional elements.

                There are a whole lot of tangents we could pursue on this topic. One great one is something they were talking about recent on The Daily Wire. They were contending that the right has traditionally done things at the local level, then the left took over the large institutions, and in response the right has tried to fight to gain control of the large institutions. We’ve lost our natural perspective. We’re builders, not redistributers.Report

              • Pinky in reply to Chip Daniels
                Ignored
                says:

                One other thing. I think you do have a respect for people who disagree with you, certainly on something like gun rights. But you’ve put a lot of people who disagree with you on other things into a basket of deplorables. I think you’ve done what you’re accusing the right of, and I think it leads you to think of the right as doing it. You know I’ve said many times that I think you’re very wrong, but not motivated by hate. But a lot of the left doesn’t think of its opponents as good and loyal citizens.

                When you post things like “those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities”, I get that it’s out of concern, but from across the field it can look like hatred.Report

              • CJColucci in reply to Pinky
                Ignored
                says:

                Do you get overtime in this Hall Monitor gig?Report

          • Brandon Berg in reply to Saul Degraw
            Ignored
            says:

            This strikes me as overdramatic. What is uncivilized about the status quo? Do they practice ritual human sacrifice? Is the Purge actually a documentary series filmed at Disney World in a secret collaboration between Universal and Disney?Report

  11. Saul Degraw
    Ignored
    says:

    Nothing except tax him more and use that money for social services. Elon Musk beclowns himself on his own.Report

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