Elon Musk, who is currently pursuing a $43 billion bid to take over Twitter, compared Microsoft founder Bill Gates to the new "pregnant man" emoji, saying "in case you need to lose a boner fast." This after Musk confronted Gates about short-selling Tesla stock. In essence, this is a bet by Gates against electric car-maker Tesla.
Gates reportedly told Musk he hadn't closed that out, and was still holding a short. This would indicate a bit of hypocrisy on the part of Gates, who as he is pursuing "climate change philanthropies," is financially betting against an electric car company that is making change in the auto industry instead of talking about it or funding awareness initiatives.
This was shown via screen grabs of apparent text messages between the two tech billionaires. Musk asked Gates: "Do you still have half a billion dollar short position against Tesla?"
"Sorry to say I haven't closed it out," Gates replied. "I would like to discuss philanthropy possibilities."
"Sorry, I cannot take your philanthropy on climate change seriously when you have a massive short position against Tesla, the company doing the most to solve climate change," Musk said.
Musk said that he had heard from "multiple people" at a recent TED event that Gates had a "half billion short against Tesla," noting that yes, he'd asked Gates about it.
After he posted the comparison of Gates to the "pregnant man" emoji, Musk suggested that the "shadow ban council" was reviewing the tweet.
Gates had previously criticized Tesla, telling The New York Times that while he thinks Tesla "is one of the greatest contributions to climate change anyone’s ever made," Tesla was doing "easy stuff, like passenger cars."
"We're basically not doing enough on the hard stuff: steel, cement, meat," Gates told the Times, "And sadly, the things people think about — the electricity, passenger cars — are a third of the problem. So we have to work on the two-thirds."
"If all you pay attention to is those short-term metrics, not the green premiums across the board, then you miss out on what is the longest lead time, which is the hard stuff," Gates said.
It was likely Gates' focus on health that made Musk make the comparison to the "pregnant man," as Gates could be seen to be exhibiting hypocrisy both with his concerns over health versus his personal actions, just as with his concerns over climate change versus his actions against Tesla.
When Gates was asked by CNBC about his short on Tesla, he said: "I don't talk about my investments, but I think [Musk] should be very proud of what he's done."
Donald Trump Jr. backed Musk's claim.
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