Elon Musk: Mr. Pump & Dump
Three years ago, Elon Musk infamously tweeted he was taking Tesla Public.
It all started in 2018 when Elon tweeted he was “considering” taking Tesla private and indicated he had “funding secured”.
This tweet sparked a firestorm on social media and prompted the SEC (Securities and Exchange Commission) to launch an inquiry into the matter. As an officer or director of a public company, there are rules on what can be said to the public.
Did Elon Musk mislead investors?
Knowingly or unknowingly, the immediate consequence was a boost in the price of Tesla. The tweet sent the stock up 11% and had even caused a halt in trades for a portion of the day.
According to the SEC, a crime was committed and Elon Musk was charged with securities fraud for misleading tweets.
In the words of the SEC, Steven Peikin, Co-Director of the SEC’s enforcement division,
“Corporate officers hold positions of trust in our markets and have important responsibilities to shareholders”
”An officer’s celebrity status or reputation as a technological innovator does not give license to take those responsibilities lightly…. Taking care to provide truthful and accurate information is among a CEO’s most critical obligations.”
Does Elon Really Care?
As a billionaire leading the technocratic future, one would think he would aspire to a higher level of ethics and conduct. However, in Elon’s own words, his disrespect for the security commission and its rules is clear.
During a 60 minutes interview, a few months after the event, Elon is quoted as saying:
“I have no respect for the SEC [Security Exchange Commission]” — Elon Musk on 60 Minutes
Two years later, his sentiment hasn’t seemed to change after he gratuitously tweeted, “SEC, three-letter acronym, the middle word is Elon’s”
Elon Tweeting to Crypto
It would seem Elon’s use of Twitter to sway the market wasn’t just focused on Telsa. In early 2021, he set his sights on cryptocurrency.
With a following of over 40 million people and the rather small (relative) market capitalization of cryptos, it’s not rocket science to know his words would have an impact on the market.
In early January 2021, Elon Musk changed his Twitter bio to include #bitcoin, which many analysts believe helped to pump the price of BTC price to an intraday high of over $38,000.
A little later in the following month (February), in an SEC filing, Tesla announced that it had purchased $1.5 Billion in Bitcoin and also said that it would start accepting Bitcoin as a method of payment for its products.
Elon’s tweets regarding Bitcoin were making many investors worried, claiming that Elon’s involvement in the market has boosted the price of Bitcoin by +20%.
On March 24, 2021, Elon Tweets “You can now buy a Tesla with Bitcoin”
A few months later, Elon tweeted that Telsa would not be accepting Bitcoin as a payment method, stating environmental concerns and effectively causing a marked drop in the price of Bitcoin 12%.
Was this his first pump and dump? His antics were not just limited to Bitcoin, he has also been influencing other cryptocurrencies too.
He tweeted Doge, and it went up 20%.
Crimes Against Crypto
Elon’s tweets in and around cryptocurrency have got many investors upset and worried. Even the vigilante hacking group “Anonymous” posted a video online with a few words to say about Elon’s actions.
“It seems that the games you have played with the crypto markets have destroyed lives.”
So…Why does Elon still have a Twitter?
For some reason, we live in a world where the President of the United States is censored by Twitter 111 times, but a CEO accused of securities fraud for using Twitter is still allowed to continue this behavior?
For lesser crimes, many individuals have been prosecuted and jailed.
Why is Elon not in Jail?
Well, it may have a lot to do with who he is.
Who Is Elon Musk Anyway?
Elon is the Poster Child for the Future
Elon is leading the technocratic future and the poster child for the future. He is the face leading humanity into the technological future.
Why do we have one of the world’s most well-known billionaires pushing shit coins and manipulating markets? Maybe because he can do what he wants.
Let’s introduce another character for comparison purposes, non-mainstream rebel, maverick, and legend — John McAfee.
Enter McAfee: A Real Rebel, Maverick & Legend
If you are looking for a real-life rebel, look no further than John McAfee.
A genius in his own right, the inventor of the first commercial antivirus (McAffee AntiVirus), a former billionaire, outlaw, and overall badass.
You can love him. You can hate him. But you can’t ignore him.
I bring John McAfee into this discussion for the simple reason, he is a man who marches to the beat of his own drum.
Unfortunately, this also means that he doesn’t play well with others. This has got him into a lot of hot water, frequently incarcerated and even worse.
What Happened to John McAfee?
For the last few years, John McAfee has been a fugitive on the run. After being pursued by US authorities for possible securities violation, among the charges, a charge for promoting cryptocurrencies on Twitter.
That’s right, John McAfee was charged and imprisoned, among other charges, for promoting cryptocurrencies using Twitter.
Apparently, using Twitter to promote a cryptocurrency is a serious offense and crime punishable by fines and imprisonment.
In October of last year, while John McAfee was on the run, he was arrested at Barcelona’s international airport and jailed in Spain, awaiting the outcome of extradition proceedings.
Sadly, on June 23 of this year ( the same day John’s extradition to the US was approved), he was found dead in his cell.
Although his death has publically been ruled a suicide, in John’s own words, he said he wouldn’t kill himself.
He even got a tattoo to prove it.
It’s a tale of two cities…
It was the best of times, it was the worst of times — at least for John McAfee. It could be said that John is the true rebel and Elon simply upholding the party status quo. Nevertheless, Musk seems to be untouchable. Not so much for McAfee.
Maybe George Carlin Said It Best….
In 3 minutes and 15 seconds, George Carlin said it better than anyone.
Carlin’s words are as true today as the day he first said them.
Dear John, in the fine words of George Carlin —
It’s a big club, and you ain’t in it.
Why is Elon not Banned from Twitter?
Maybe he is the poster child for the future. Maybe not. Either way, the point is and will always be - Do your own research and form your own opinion.
Just because some guy on Twitter tweets, doesn’t make him an expert.
Technology has given us, especially celebrities, a voice to communicate ideas and beliefs to the world at large. At no other time in history have people had such large podiums to voice their opinions from.
Probably the greatest skill we can all learn in these technological times is the skill of forming an independent opinion through the use of well-developed critical thinking.